Denis Dyack says games shouldn't be previewed until finished

#1 Posted by Hexogen (766 posts) -
http://www.joystiq.com/2011/05/09/silicon-knights-denis-dyack-still-wary-of-game-previews-hints/

I asked Dyack about his outspoken views against the preview process. "In my view, the ultimate model requires our industry to not show games until they are ready," he told me, echoing his past sentiments. "I'm not saying get rid of previews, because previews are a good thing," he clarified. "What I am suggesting is that our industry should not do previews until the game's completed."

I can't really tell from the article whether his view is that games shouldn't be previewed until they're ready, or that games shouldn't be previewed until they're finished. He alternates between wording suggesting both. To me those are two totally different things. I can get behind the sentiment that you shouldn't preview a game until the part you're previewing is ready. It doesn't have to be release ready, just make sure that all the systems being shown off in that particular preview are up to par. If the demo's quality isn't definitely going to be satisfactory in time for the preview, don't show it.

But if he's insinuating that games shouldn't be shown off until they're mostly finished, I think he's crazy. It's important to get as many people hyped about your product as you can before release, but that excitement takes time to build. And if you want people to talk up your game, you need to give them something to talk about. I just don't think it makes sense to remain mum on a game's features until just a few weeks before release, at least for most games. Yeah, some of the big franchises could probably do just fine with that model, but if you're promoting a new IP or something that's not already a multi-million seller, you need to get positive publicity early. Early previews are a great way to accomplish that. They can also give you feedback on some pretty major aspects of the game, so you can make adjustments before release. If you preview the game a month before release and it gets a bad reception, it's probably too late to fix all the problems.

There's other stuff I could address, but I don't want this to turn into a TL;DR kind of post, so I'll stop here. What do you guys think about Dyack's opinion on previews?

#2 Posted by KaosAngel (13765 posts) -

This the fool that got his ass handed to him by kids on NeoGAF and made that shitty ass game for 360 that's been in development since the PSone?

#3 Posted by RecSpec (3678 posts) -
@KaosAngel said:
" This the fool that got his ass handed to him by kids on NeoGAF and made that shitty ass game for 360 that's been in development since the PSone? "
Oh god I remember the NeoGAF debacle. 
#4 Posted by Doctorchimp (4063 posts) -

I think it's up to the developer if they want to show off their cool shit or not.

Too bad X-men Destiny is a cool idea that is a taken in a wrong direction though....

#5 Posted by zityz (2360 posts) -

Oh  Dennis Dyack. Always saying stuff that only crazy people say.

#6 Posted by EvilTwin (3324 posts) -

I'm pretty sure he's been saying this for 3 years. 

#7 Posted by Enigma777 (6047 posts) -
@KaosAngel said:
" This the fool that got his ass handed to him by kids on NeoGAF and made that shitty ass game for 360 that's been in development since the PSone? "
Yes.
#8 Edited by Slaker117 (4835 posts) -

If a developer thinks it's ok to show a game early, why not? I get resisting publishers who want to media blitz before the devs think it's a good idea, but if they have something they actually want to show off, I see no reason not to.

If Dyack is saying "not until they are ready" I don't think anyone would disagree. It's kind of a "well, duh" thing. If he is saying "not until they are finished", that's stupid.

Also, I don't think it's possible for Too Human to come up without me watching that old video thing. It's just too damn amazing.

#9 Posted by BraveToaster (12590 posts) -

I had to google this guy to see if he's important.

#10 Posted by Hexogen (766 posts) -
@EvilTwin said:
" I'm pretty sure he's been saying this for 3 years.  "
Now that you say that I had to go look it up, and you're correct. Now that I read that I really think he's missing the point of previews. He seems to think that they're predictions of the future, which is way off the mark, at least in my eyes. Maybe other people interpret previews differently, but I see them simply as a peek at what the game is shaping up to be. It's not like it's the final consideration of the game--that's what a review is.
#11 Posted by buzz_clik (6837 posts) -

So... no Two Human previews in the near future then?

Moderator
#12 Posted by rectum_abominae (158 posts) -
@Hexogen: Well, Denis Dyack is fucking crazy.  Topic over.
#13 Posted by Kyreo (4600 posts) -
@Axxol said:
" I had to google this guy to see if he's important. "
#14 Posted by LoSkully (8 posts) -

Honestly.........

Previews be okay with ....... Trailers/Screenshots......... but not when they put out demos when game is only 50% done, plus it be good if reviewers kept opinions to themselves and think more on optimistic side than negative, especially when a company is trying out a new idea or concept........ gaming companies have been in "FEAR FACTOR" for a while now, and dont like to do things/think outside of the box.... and games seem to be getting shorter and shorter with more sequels... than actual experience.... it like going to theaters to see matrix movie 2 and getting "To Be Continued".   Honestly while in some cases squeals create less room for error, and previews help improve to show what they done to make this version better from last....

Taking away Loot System in Mass Effect 2 kinda ruined the game for me.....

Console Gaming Companies need to stop trying to do what F2P MMOs are doing by creating clones on top of clones in many of F2P mmos and keep coming out with a new clone each year....and doing hit and miss... and actually sit down..... like Blizzard and get into mind set of   "Not Releasing Till Quality is Good Enough" that the real success to a gaming company.

BOTTOM LINE..... Present Working Demos for Conventions, with strict policy about Video Taping, and maybe Demos being released 2-4 weeks before offical release, with previews of interviews, screen shots, or specific 100% completed footage of gameplay.   In the end something might rub a player wrong way and they wont buy the game while for others it might fit like a glove.

#15 Posted by rectum_abominae (158 posts) -
@LoSkully: Why the hell should reviewers be optimistic?  Do you WANT to waste your money on shit games?  Developers are only "in fear mode" because the economy sucks, which has lead to homogenization.  Not to mention idiots like you waste money on games you got hyped up for, so now vidjagames are big business.  Thanks, dick.
#16 Posted by smitty86 (686 posts) -

If he means ready, then I agree completely. No need in showing an early version of a game if it will do more harm than good.

If he means completed, it makes no sense because it is then no longer a preview. By then it is pretty much a review.

#17 Posted by MordeaniisChaos (5730 posts) -

Right, because it's not like people need to be informed and get pumped up about a game and know if they should pay attention before release.
They should be ready, yes. They should not be FINISHED. It's not really a preview if it's done. Previews are supposed to show how the game is coming along, and the direction it seems to be taking. Reviews are for people wanting to know how the game is, previews are for people wanting to know what the game might be like. Previews are pretty much the only way small games can ever exist and be successful, they are the only way devs can get feedback from real people and change the major issues (ie, drastically altering a character's appearance) that are pointed out.

Previews are not only good for pretty much everyone, but are also never going anywhere.

#18 Edited by LoSkully (8 posts) -
@rectum_abominae said:

" @LoSkully: Why the hell should reviewers be optimistic?  Do you WANT to waste your money on shit games?  Developers are only "in fear mode" because the economy sucks, which has lead to homogenization.  Not to mention idiots like you waste money on games you got hyped up for, so now vidjagames are big business.  Thanks, dick. "

because it can kill the game before developers can complete it.

When i think of a preview i think of 1/2 year before release date at least, i have purchased many games..., and if you do your research correctly on a game it very low rate that a bad game might be bought.... you cant base also your opinion just on 1 preview.

But if your a popular site... you can destroy the game and the motivation of the developing team before it even out, in some cases too much negative from public might have the HQs just pull the plug on the project all together.

The problem is not the previews but the budget/pressure from companies to release the game fast.  (That the reason why there are two companies working for Call Of Duty series otherwise they would had sucked REALLY BADLY.....if 1 company had to release new one every year)

Diablo 3 is a good preview.... and companies should learn from that...... every time hype might seem like it dieing, they released new class info/trailers/information/screen shots...

I been waiting for Diablo 3 from the day i finished Diablo 2 before the expansion was even announced.

P.S.  Youtube = best Preview
#19 Posted by benjaebe (2783 posts) -

Somehow, this doesn't surprise me coming from the guy that made Too Human.

#20 Posted by iam3green (14388 posts) -

he speaks crazy. when a game is finished that means it would be a review. when it is in the middle of being developed that means it's a preview. he say that previews are good except when they are finished. pretty crazy stuff he speaks there.

#21 Posted by rectum_abominae (158 posts) -
@LoSkully: So because a preview COULD ruin a game's chances of selling, GB et al should write positive reviews.  

Imagine a world where everyone writes nice, happy reviews for games that turn out to be shit.  What will you do, wait on the review which WILL say negative things about it?  Have you considered that maybe a developer aborting a project early on might be a GOOD thing for them?  Imagine all the resources they'll waste if they complete a game, then trash all that work.  Nothing would kill the industry sooner.

You don't know what you're talking about, ace.
#22 Posted by sopachuco13 (390 posts) -


Denis Dyack was saying the same thing during the run-up to Too Human because of the bad coverage from the previous E3. This is one of the first times since Too Human that Denis has brought the crazy out. He has been keeping pretty silent for a while. I would hope that if he wants to push this no-preview agenda, he would get some backers to stand by him. But, for now it is just "crazy" Denis standing on a soap box.

 

I agree with the others that a game would never get very far if there wasn't continually new preview coverage of games. I like Denis Dyack. He is a fucking genius. But, he comes off as crazy because of the avangelism that he rode all the way to the release of Too Human. He was humbled by that games reception, hopefully. Now, lets hope that he and his team get back to what they do, which is making some good games. Dyack got "Dikatana'd," but hopefully he can pick up the pieces.

#23 Edited by redbliss (647 posts) -

I think everyone pretty much understands what a preview is, so I think it is fine. Previews are great because they keep consumers informed on the game and how it is going. Reviewers and gamers know that previews are not full reviews, so i dont know what the problem is with them. Games definitely should not be reviewed until the game is finished. Maybe Denis Dyack was talking about reviews. I am going to assume he meant reviewed and not previewed.
#24 Edited by Siphillis (1286 posts) -
@Kyreo said:

" @Axxol said:

" I had to google this guy to see if he's important. "
"
Glad to see we're putting our wiki to good use.
#25 Posted by BraveToaster (12590 posts) -
@Siphillis said:

" @Kyreo said:

" @Axxol said:
" I had to google this guy to see if he's important. "
"
Glad we're putting our wiki to good use. "

Oh, you mean the wiki that only has three sentences about him?

#26 Posted by Siphillis (1286 posts) -
@Axxol said:

" @Siphillis said:

" @Kyreo said:

" @Axxol said:
" I had to google this guy to see if he's important. "
"
Glad we're putting our wiki to good use. "

Oh, you mean the wiki that only has three sentences about him?

"
I'm surprised the man even warrants three sentences.

Here's a rule of thumb I've found: the more vocal the personality, the lesser the talent.  Compare David Cage to Shigeru Miyamoto, or George Broussard to Sid Miere.   Anyone who spends a considerable amount of time and energy to experiment with forums obviously isn't deeply involved in their work.    
#27 Posted by l4wd0g (1815 posts) -

He id doesn't want to preview his game, that's his prerogative. It may hurt the games hype, but not showing the game until it's good is probably a good idea. I don't really like previews as the reviewers are usually way too kid to a game.

#28 Posted by norton123 (311 posts) -

Just let him be Denis Dyack. It's easier that way. 

#29 Posted by Subjugation (4693 posts) -

Sounds like someone is afraid of people finding out their game is bad before it hits shelves.

#30 Posted by mazik765 (2315 posts) -
@norton123 said:
" Just let him be Denis Dyack. It's easier that way.  "
Truest statement in this thread.
#31 Posted by Yanngc33 (4496 posts) -

That kind of defeats the purpose of a preview. Also this is coming from the idiot who made Too Human

#32 Posted by GalacticPunt (983 posts) -

Good gravy, in 2011 Denis Dyack is still blaming negative press previews and the Unreal Engine for Too Human's weak sales.  Too Human didn't sell well because
1)  A great deal of the technical weirdness cited in the previews was still in the shipped game, and they were rightfully dinged in the reviews for it
2)  There wasn't necessarily a giant audience for cyber viking dungeon-crawlers on the Xbox360 the year it came out

That being said, Eternal Darkness was awesome and Too Human was still strangely addicting.  I hope the X-Men game turns out well, and the rest of the Too Human trilogy eventually happens.  As I was watching Thor this weekend, I was jonesing to collect more cyber runes.

#33 Posted by chrissedoff (2034 posts) -
@Siphillis said:
" I'm surprised the man even warrants three sentences.

Here's a rule of thumb I've found: the more vocal the personality, the lesser the talent.  Compare David Cage to Shigeru Miyamoto, or George Broussard to Sid Miere.   Anyone who spends a considerable amount of time and energy to experiment with forums obviously isn't deeply involved in their work.     "
you shut your goddamn mouth! this man made blood omen and eternal darkness.
#34 Posted by Little_Socrates (5649 posts) -

This is the guy who's been making Too Human since the PS1 era and was previewing it for years?


Well, maybe he learned how bad things can get personally.
  
  Also, why was this not yet posted?
#35 Posted by Underachiever007 (2468 posts) -

Denis Dyack says a lot of things.

#36 Posted by Vexxan (4598 posts) -
@Axxol said:
" I had to google this guy to see if he's important. "
Had to do that too. He seems like a crazy person.
#37 Posted by DougQuaid (1267 posts) -

So.. when is he coming on the Bombcast to go on a 2 hour long diatribe about how previews are bad?

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