I am starting to think games like these are truly the best

#1 Posted by super2j (1653 posts) -

Games that everyone has low expection for and or dont really get too much advertisement. The can surprise me very easily.

I played Nier, and while i knew it reviewed very so so, I really loved the way the story was and even the gameplay was good enough that enjoyed what i experienced. the same can said about poorly reviewing spiderman web of shadows except flipped around( amazing game play, meh story). Now I am playing Binary domain and I am getting this feeling. I never get it with triple A games. So far the only other game I remember feeling this with is Nier. I dont know how to describe it, maybe a low level excitement?

In any case Binary Domain has a light action movie like story (in a good way) and a great game behind it. The only issue i have with it is the way the controls on pc are, shooting is fine and the VO going on going on as the game is playing is approaching Uncharted (the game) levels, people talking and better yet asking your opinion (ex. first time Faye is in the group).

So this feeling, which is best described as "i have no idea what can happen next because I know this is an unpolished diamond and parts of it will wow me".

Are there any games that did that for you?

for comparison sake:

Something like Uncharted 2, gears etc. They gained a lot of mindshare hard and fast. everyone knew of them and they scored incredibly. So when i played them, i enjoyed them and was "wowed" but its not the same feeling. I hope that helps clarify what I am looking for.

#2 Posted by Benny (1947 posts) -

I know it's almost impossible since you post on a video games message board and presumably keep up with the industry but maybe you're paying too much attention to reviews and buzz around games?

Personally I only played uncharted 1 & 2 for the first time 4 months ago and Uncharted 2 BLEW ME THE FUCK AWAY. I still think that's one of the best looking games released to date and even though I knew about the reviews and the 'AAA' development it had going for it I think I enjoyed it more because I played it separate from the buzz and excitement and allowed the game itself to wow me rather than let the expectations dictate my experience.

I also played Nier to completion and saw all the endings and was blown away by that game too, and I think I enjoyed it so much because of how unique it is, not because of its mid tier budget or whatever.

Perhaps not knowing what to expect & uniqueness is probably what drew you to the games rather than the AAA development? Just wondering is all, it's an interesting thought.

Dark Souls for me felt like this, it got a reputation for everybody knowing almost nothing about the game or what to expect, and being completely unique.

#3 Posted by Klei (1768 posts) -

Dante's Inferno. It had excellent sound design and a pretty unique twist on GoW's combat. Nobody liked it.

Alan Wake. I loved that game, yet, it was received very poorly by players.

Brutal Legend. Loved it, I liked it's RTS aspect, but I agree it was too short. Most people just bitched it down.

#4 Posted by Ramone (2959 posts) -

I think if you want to have a wider range of experiences with games you have to ignore reviews to an extent or at least ignore the little voice in your head that says any game that got less than 4 stars (or whatever metric it is) isn't worth playing. I've just ordered Binary Domain and I'm expecting good things based on the reception it got on here from both the staff and the community.

Also Spiderman: Web of Shadows was fun as hell.

#5 Posted by SamStrife (1282 posts) -

Binary Domain took me by complete surprise. I wasn't expecting anything too special but I found my best gaming experience of 2012 with it. Whilst it obviously isn't the game of the year, it was to me based purely on me having the most pure and fun experience with it.

I am a firm believer that following everything since announcement, watching all the trailers and reading all the interviews is detrimental and as such I watch the announcement trailer and maybe the first proper one and I'll follow nothing more of a game until I actually play it. It makes them so much more fun that way.

#6 Posted by Atlas (2430 posts) -

I kinda get what you're getting at - I haven't played Binary Domain, but there are certainly games that I have a certain warm fuzzy feeling for, because they surpassed my expectations or are wildly underrated by the wider internet game community. My main examples of this would probably be The Saboteur, and to a lesser extent, Mount&Blade: Warband. But - and it's a big but - let's not get ahead of ourselves. It's important to remember that a game that games that are charming, or underrated, or surprised you, or came along at exactly the right time, can sometimes receive massively inflated amount of personal esteem.

No matter how much I like the pulpy story and atmosphere of The Saboteur, and think it's an under appreciated game...it's also quite flawed, the story is silly, and there are tons of open-world games that play way better. Mount&Blade is a much better game mechanically, but it's also very niche and has a narrow range of appeal; it also looks like dogshit. You can't objectively compare these kinds of experiences to highly polished, technically proficient, and mechanically dense games.

So we should value the games that penetrate the jaded super-informed culture of "hardcore gamers", but let's put things into perspective.

#7 Posted by morrelloman (606 posts) -

Too much coverage is a bad thing. It is more likely to ruin something than to enhance your experience. That said, I bet if you looked around enough you could find some really positive reviews of games like Binary Domain or Neir. That is why it can be good to look at many sources of information to see if there are things about a game that you would like. Don't let reviews affect your expectations so much, Trust your sources, and trust your gut. There is always going to be a chance you like something.

#8 Posted by super2j (1653 posts) -

@Ramone: @SamStrife: That little voice at the back of my head is hard to ignore. And for the most part i stopped looking at reviews because Quicklooks are good enough. I see the game for a long period and then i hear of any positives and negatives by the Staff, and videogame podcasts also inform.

@Atlas: Yes, what you say is true. It bothers me when people ask me what to play because I dont know if they will receive the flawed game in the same fashion that I did.

#9 Posted by djou (858 posts) -

One game that I don't see mentioned in the talk about all the craziness in Binary Domain is Vanquish. IMO it has the same level of craziness with similar mechanics, a 3rd person cover based shooter with humungous robots. If anything the mechanics are more bat shit than BD since the game adds a sliding mechanic where you can jet around the terrain.

I would definitely categorize it in the criminally underrated, unpolished gem column. I never understood why there wasn't more love for the game since it was directed by Shinji Mikami.

The story is the same incomprehensible Japanese weirdness with a cigarette smoking DARPA agent battling some type of Cold War conspiracy.

I picked this up as a budget game and was blown away. The campaign is short, maybe 6 hours, and released by Sega. If people are into BD I would look into this one as well.

#10 Posted by ImpendingFoil (555 posts) -

I heard some decent things about Binary Domain and a friend of mine wanted to get me a gift for Christmas that was less than $20 so I just said to pick this up. I am glad that it really worked out because I have been having a ton of fun with this game so far, even with the multiplayer which still has a decent amount of people still playing.

It is a real shame that this bombed as hard as it did, I really would have liked to see more.

#11 Edited by Animasta (14648 posts) -

@morrelloman said:

Too much coverage is a bad thing. It is more likely to ruin something than to enhance your experience. That said, I bet if you looked around enough you could find some really positive reviews of games like Binary Domain or Neir. That is why it can be good to look at many sources of information to see if there are things about a game that you would like. Don't let reviews affect your expectations so much, Trust your sources, and trust your gut. There is always going to be a chance you like something.

there was like, one positive review of Nier.

actually there were 5 but 4 of those were of the soundtrack.

and OP, I am so with you, but thats because you mentioned binary domain AND Nier

oh, and for other games that did that... I'd say E.Y.E. Divine Cybermancy. The story is impenetrable but the game part is so fun

#12 Posted by ItBeStefYo (1021 posts) -

@super2j: I know exactly what you mean, great example, maybe the best example of this is Deadly Premonition.

I don't think its just because they are not advertised though, Persona 4 made me feel a similar way and it's a hugely popular game, for good reason.

#13 Posted by StarvingGamer (8016 posts) -
#14 Edited by GetEveryone (4455 posts) -

@super2j: I've been thinking about this a bit recently.

There isn't much room for middle-of-the-road titles any more. For the most part, we're moving towards crowd-sourced/indie or AAA.

That being said, there's greater room for experimenting with these titles. They aren't afforded the same budgets as the bigger titles, and so aren't expected to turn as great a profit. The developers should be seeking to try different things, but most aren't. If you look at titles like Binary Domain, Shadows of the Damned (feel free to add your own to this), they don't have a huge marketing push, but the developers have tried to "break out" from this perceived notion of being mediocre by appealing to certain styles/fully-developing a specific mechanic or what have you.

They fill a similar role to games like Enslaved. That game was intended to be a wild success, and despite being a "AAA-title" was a somewhat mediocre beat-em-up, with a fantastic story and lush environments. So it failed miserably, and that hurt both the developers and industry . But it nailed certain things... and it's remembered for that. So stripping back the production value somewhat and reducing costs means they aren't in such economic danger; they can rely heavily on word-of-mouth, as opposed to multi-million dollar advertising campaigns, and aim to capture a specific audience.

The issue is, if I ran a studio at the moment, these are the sorts of games I'd avoid. They cost less to make, but how relevant are they when we have film stars advertising AAA-titles that go on to out-gross movies. Of course, this is one of the issues that's lead to a multitude of studio closures in the last few months.

If you look at the state of the industry at the moment, it is in flux and there's basically 2 diverging/emerging markets. Kickstarter , the humble bundle campaign, Minecraft , Steam Greenlight etc have legitimized the indie-market. Further, there's been a far greater emphasis on seasonal releases of AAA-titles. If you can develop smaller titles on a fraction of the budget with smaller teams where is the motivation to spend a lot more on a title that may only meet it's budget back? Rather, wouldn't you instead spend far more on a product that has the ability to generate huge amounts of revenue. It's a gamble, sure, but preferable to effectively throwing money away.

...I have no idea how I ended up typing this. I came into work on the weekend with the intention of getting shit done and instead I write a meandering treatise on this shit.

I may expand on this and turn it into a blog post.

#15 Posted by smiddy (353 posts) -

I picked this up in the steam sale and like a lot of others was really impressed with what I've found, especially in terms of characters and story.

Sure Bo was a little over the top, but every game could do with some comic relief. And while Faye was nearly ruined with that ridiculous "armour" I think she and the rest of the team came across as very believable characters. I'm sure I wasn't the only one to be blown away how, at times, the voice acting and character animation was top of the class. There were literally moments when a character would do some little movement or facial expression which would shock me due to it's quality.

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