Stealth Games Don't Have to Be So Niche

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#51 Posted by TheCrimsonKing (32 posts) -

Since when have stealth games been "niche," exactly?

Many of the stealth games released in the past 15 years have been multi-million sellers. The Metal Gear franchise has sold 30+ million copies. Splinter Cell has sold over 20 million copies, of which most weren't the watered down stealth game that was Conviction. The Hitman series has sold over 8 million copies of its' games. The latest big stealth game to be released, Deus Ex: HR, sold 3 million copies and the original sold near that too. Also, while Assassin's Creed is focusing less and less on stealth, there are still heavy stealth elements in the series, and it has been the fastest selling new IP of this generation!

Sure, when compared up against the sales of the most broadly appealing (and, not coincidentally, most bland) first and third person shooters that dominate sales charts these days, the sales of stealth games fall short. Does that make EVERY game that isn't a bland, catch-all shooter a niche title? No!

Just because most publishers have shied away from the challenge of making a stealth-heavy game this generation when it is easier (and more profitable) to make a shooter doesn't mean that the sizable audience for stealth games has suddenly vanished since the beginning of this console generation.

#52 Posted by hermes (1349 posts) -

My problem with the genre are all the fail states that require to be stealthy or die. At one point, missions that were instant fail if you get spotted became as annoying a design cliche as escort missions. I agree with people that say AC and Batman were prime examples for well designed stealth because you got to recover from a failed stealth. If you approached those situations in a frontal way, it was a game over, but you could still survive having been spotted.

#53 Posted by zeekthegeek (381 posts) -

Man, those obscure Niche games like Metal Gear Solid, Assassin's Creed, Splinter Cell, Hitman. Nobody plays those right?

#54 Edited by Zleunamme (647 posts) -

The comparison of stealth and horror games is like comparing apples with oranges. Combat in those two genres is means to empower players a little. Not being passive all the time. If player are going engaging in fire fights all the time, it becomes an action game.

An example people have mentioned is the Batman Arkham games. Some enemies have access to guns and Batman doesn't. Fighting the enemy head on is not practical. Sneaking around is means of reaching the goal without getting killed.

The love/hate relationship for stealth games stems from going against how game is designed. Look at game like Metal Gear Solid, Splinter Cell and early Hitman games. There is the trial and error aspect mentioned before. If the player gets caught and tries to brute force their way out the problem. Those games games get harder by being overwhelming the player. Then frustration seeks in.

Stealth games is not an exclusive genre. There have been plenty games since MGS 2 that used stealth mechanics in some fashion. Bully, San Andreas, Manhunt, Beyond Good and Evil, and Fallout 3 for example. There is also other games that tried to shoe horn stealth for the sake of it--which I can't remember.

Stealth and combat can work together if it is done right. I wish Nels Anderson the best of luck on his game. If people have time, check out the MGS HD collection quick look to see how awesome Patrick is at playing a stealth game.

#55 Edited by Lamashtu (254 posts) -

Ever get the feeling Giant Bomb usually has the wrong guy reviewing stealth action games? Respect to Jeff and all, but seriously, 4/5 for DX:HR and he played it as a shooter (hate to be *that guy*, any Deus Ex fan will tell you that's the wrong way of playing a Deus Ex game) and a 5/5 for the Syndicate reboot?

#56 Posted by JackOhara (227 posts) -

@Brodehouse said:

I find it completely baffling that someone can like the first three Silent Hill games and think Downpour is junk. It's Silent Hill to a fault. Combat is clumsy, you run from most enemies and try to isolate the ones you do want to kill for safety. The puzzles actually make more sense now. If you hated the old games I would completely understand disliking Downpour. I think you might have some nostalgia or maybe you want to like the old games more than you actually liked playing them.

My main problem with stealth games is feeling like the prey when the story tells me I'm the predator. If Sam Fisher or the Hitman are supposed to be the most dangerous men in the world, how come they can lose a straight gunfight against common thugs? Solid Snake is the worst example, he's less effective with a gun or his fists than the common henchmen he's supposed to be superior to. Batman and Assassin's Creed nailed it, in that you're a predator who is using stealth because it's tactically efficient, not because you're clumsy and useless. Stealth should be a fun way to gain an advantage, not an arduous and annoying necessity to maintain.

If the game was actually about me being weak and incapable and having to hide just in order to stay alive, I would understand. That could be fun on its own, if it controlled well and you were shifting through hiding spots quick and clean. But they always try to make it intentionally clumsy and I hate that.

The premise of both Hitman and Splinter Cell include that stealth is something that should be maintained at all times as you are always outnumbered and outgunned. This makes for some really intense nail-biting moments when you are trying to perform a complicated kill and get away with it, or hide a body when you know somebody is coming. You play those games in a way so that when you finish a mission, it would appear that you weren't even there.

Batman and Assassin's Creed have stealth elements to them, but I really wouldn't go as far as to call them stealth games, so I don't understand why people are bringing them up. Agent 47 and Sam Fisher might be very effective when dispatching single enemies, but they aren't superheroes, they're humans. A bunch of dudes shooting at a person with machine guns is proven to be effective in taking them out. If you want to play a bullet sponge I'm afraid you are barking up the wrong tree.

If you dislike what I am describing here, then you probably don't like stealth games, plain and simple. But remember, not everyone is you.

#57 Posted by anubite (8 posts) -

Assassin's Creed and Hitman: Anything (besides Absolution, possibly) share absolutely nothing in common. Assassin's Creed is not a stealth game. To suggest so is foul.

AC is an action game where you play as a serial killer of big political targets. There's no stealthy-assassination. Gameplay has always been, run up to someone and kill them - run away. That's not stealth. That's not even finesse.

Hitman: Blood Money is a good game. It's the most "action-y" of the Hitman games besides the first, but it blends action with stealth and finesse /so/ incredibly well, that the amount of action in the game is excusable.

Thief 1,2, and 3 are all stealth games with various amounts of possible action to them.

VTMB can be a stealth game. Same with Deus Ex. Both of those games have sublime stealth-design for their respective genres.

Stealth gameplay isn't about the duck-waddle or the "reacting vs the doing" in video games. Stealth gameplay lends itself to an open environment, where designers focus on good level design. Skyrim, for instance, has lame level design. You have some corridors and some enemies placed in them and you just walk forward and kill things. Deus Ex drops you in a zone and says, "Do X". There are 10 ways you can accomplish X, half of which probably involve some amount of stealth. That's what makes Deus Ex fun - I have the control to do what I want and the game is designed well enough that it can be flexible to my whims. Assassin's creed is a lienar roller coster, where you're given one way to do something and expected to do that one thing to accomplish that one mission that feeds into killing that one guy.

If you don't like stealth games, it's for the wrong reasons. Stealth games are their core are how all action games should be designed. I'm sick of rail shooters - they're a cheap game to make and produce. They have no substance. They aren't fun.

#58 Posted by Alphazero (1533 posts) -

Great article, thanks.

I still like being the badassiest badass to ever assbad. I think being the stealthiest stealther that ever stealthed is just another variation on that. Not that that's a bad thing.

#59 Posted by HerbieBug (4193 posts) -

@deerokus said:

I've never really classed the Hitman games as stealth games. They're hiding-in-plain-sight/puzzle games.

Yep. Particularly if we're talking about Blood Money. It's all about casing the parts of the level that don't require a costume to walk around in safely. Looking for possible NPC's that are wearing clothing that could be useful in getting closer to your goal, then following that NPC until they walk into a secluded area for quiet drugging. :)

To Patrick: there is one thing that makes stealth less fun or unpalatable for players who fall short of the category of stealth purist. Fail states. That's it. That's what most people hate about stealth. It's not the slow traversal of the level or the being quiet or the paying attention to your surroundings. It's GAME OVER when you get spotted from across the map by the eagle eye NPC. Most good stealth games have a certain degree of flex to them that allows you to carry on even after detection. Hitman is excellent at it. If you get caught, your punishment is a simple matter of killing every living thing in the level and receiving a bad score at the end. The game more than adequately supplies you with the tools to slaughter your way through like this. You play quiet and careful in Hitman because the game is far more rewarding when you do so. It is one of the few series out there where having to spray entire building with automatic rifle fire is the disappointing outcome.

It's funny to me how pervasive marketing theory on stealth games implies that they don't sell well. There is no evidence of that. There is a difference between focus tester opinion and actual sales. More actiony and more dumb does not necessarily mean broader audience. The same is true for complex RPG's.

#60 Posted by JackOhara (227 posts) -

@anubite said:

Assassin's Creed and Hitman: Anything (besides Absolution, possibly) share absolutely nothing in common. Assassin's Creed is not a stealth game. To suggest so is foul.

AC is an action game where you play as a serial killer of big political targets. There's no stealthy-assassination. Gameplay has always been, run up to someone and kill them - run away. That's not stealth. That's not even finesse.

Hitman: Blood Money is a good game. It's the most "action-y" of the Hitman games besides the first, but it blends action with stealth and finesse /so/ incredibly well, that the amount of action in the game is excusable.

Thief 1,2, and 3 are all stealth games with various amounts of possible action to them.

VTMB can be a stealth game. Same with Deus Ex. Both of those games have sublime stealth-design for their respective genres.

Stealth gameplay isn't about the duck-waddle or the "reacting vs the doing" in video games. Stealth gameplay lends itself to an open environment, where designers focus on good level design. Skyrim, for instance, has lame level design. You have some corridors and some enemies placed in them and you just walk forward and kill things. Deus Ex drops you in a zone and says, "Do X". There are 10 ways you can accomplish X, half of which probably involve some amount of stealth. That's what makes Deus Ex fun - I have the control to do what I want and the game is designed well enough that it can be flexible to my whims. Assassin's creed is a lienar roller coster, where you're given one way to do something and expected to do that one thing to accomplish that one mission that feeds into killing that one guy.

If you don't like stealth games, it's for the wrong reasons. Stealth games are their core are how all action games should be designed. I'm sick of rail shooters - they're a cheap game to make and produce. They have no substance. They aren't fun.

I think this guy puts it rather well.

#61 Posted by Kayrack (288 posts) -

man the amnesia part sent shivers down my spine

#62 Edited by Mustachio (242 posts) -

Oddly enough although I do think the Hitman games have a large emphasis on trial and error, I actually made a concious effort to avoid just restarting a mission if I screwed up during Blood Money. It changed my play style completely but also had its own kind of reward when I started simply piecing possibilities together without having to experiment with all the parts of a trap. Also, people that kept restarting until they got what could be considered an 'ideal' result may have also missed the feature in Blood Money in which you would become more notorious if you screwed up a mission (I am unsure if this was also in the previous games). My attempt at the suburb level was a complete and utter disaster, but I continued on to see how it would effect the rest of the game. It made later levels much tougher, and the risks much higher, but that in turn required me to adapt. There were several missions in which I performed a 'perfect' hit on my first try, and that feeling you get while you walk to the exit, as Ryan Davis pointed out, is priceless.

Honestly though, I understand why people restarted so much. Failure stings non more-so than in a stealth game, where the entire mission simply falls apart at the slightest mistake. Ultimately I would cede that although Hitman is a trial and error game, it just depends on whether you're OK with only having one trial and carrying the errors with you for the rest of the journey.

#63 Posted by Dan_CiTi (3147 posts) -

"Cool PC game words about how PC games are the only games that are any good."

#64 Posted by GERALTITUDE (2857 posts) -

Stealth games aren't niche, they're just less common than other genres. In recent years they've been especially rare and relatively smaller releases relative to the last generation. But you wouldn't call Westerns niche because there's so few now. I hate to get "serious" but in general I find that too much writing about video games treats it as a software and not a creative endeavour. The "now" in games rarely considers the past. I understand coverage must be about new games but doesn't everyone play old games still? Do you really only play the newest games, release after release, never going back?

That style of gaming and talking about games perpetrates an "old things are obsolete" mentality that is really detrimental for games. Vinny knows this at least! A good book is never obsolete. The argument that the visuals or graphics mar the experience by way of becoming "out-dated" is clearly subjective, so I don't know why that's ever brought up.

Also: the gameplay in Mark of the Ninja is very similar in design to that of Metal Gear. I'm surprised neither Patrick or Nels Anderson brought it up, considering the topic of the article. The supposed lack of 2D stealth games is HILARIOUS to even mention without MG. I understand the most recent undertakings of the franchise weren't to everyone's liking, but, in my opinion, there's no mystery as to how you make a good stealth game. Metal Gear Solid: Tactical Espionage Action. The name says it all.

#65 Posted by GERALTITUDE (2857 posts) -

@firecracker22: I had this exact thought today!

Good stealth games have only one fail state, just like every other genre: death. Some exceptions apply.

But yes, what you say is true. There is a hospital level in Siphon Filter 1 or 2 where the fail state is simply being seen, which happens a lot in a game with no mechanics to support stealth.

#66 Posted by ArbitraryWater (11418 posts) -

So anyways, Thief is a pretty great series.

#67 Posted by freakin9 (1080 posts) -

It's funny when stealth games try to appeal to gamers like me. You inevitably find yourself thinking... I think I broke the game, isn't this a stealth game? As you run through levels.

#68 Posted by Roger778 (953 posts) -

Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell (the first game) is one of my all-time favorite games of all time, mainly because it really does feel like a stealth game. Grabbing guys from behind and dragging them into a dark corner, shooting out lights with a silenced pistol, and quietly sneaking around while crouched. Those are a few reasons why I love the game so much. It rewards you for taking your time, and being smart.

#69 Posted by ozzdog12 (856 posts) -

@Flacracker: Conviction was great and Absolution will be great.

#70 Posted by EndlessLotus (109 posts) -

One does not simply infiltrate into Mordor....

#71 Posted by Deusoma (3000 posts) -

I clicked on this because I read the title as "Stupid Games Don't Have to be so Niche" and wanted to know what the definition of a stupid game was. Mildly disappointed.

#72 Posted by TheDudeOfGaming (6078 posts) -

Play a stealth game, shoot everyone in the level with an AK-47.

#73 Posted by Cybexx (1147 posts) -

Stealth Bastard is another 2D stealth game, don't let the name throw you its worth checking out, especially since its free.

#74 Posted by dropabombonit (1484 posts) -

Good article, I will be sure to check this game when it comes out. Patrick your problem seems to be that you aren't play the horror or stealth games that are the best in genre. MGS games are still great stealth games but if you get caught, you can shot your way out

#75 Posted by charmless (5 posts) -

@Alphazero said:

Great article, thanks.

I still like being the badassiest badass to ever assbad. I think being the stealthiest stealther that ever stealthed is just another variation on that. Not that that's a bad thing.

Agreed!

#76 Posted by Snarkasaur (27 posts) -

I can't see how a 2d game could be stealth based. That seems boring to me, not that I won't probably check this one out when/if its released.

#77 Posted by MordeaniisChaos (5730 posts) -

My issue with Stealth games is that the AI always behaves a bit differently, and never realistically. If an organic thing happened and I lost my cover because of it, I'd be fine. When one AI triggers every other AI on the map with an instant Detective-Vision's Eye View of my exact position, that's just stupid. I want an AI that reacts the way I expect, and I want every bit of interaction between two things in the game world, be it player and AI, player and environment, environment and AI, to be clear in the way they would be in reality. I want a sandbox to go loose in and use my own intelligence to figure this stuff out.

I want games where you can't just walk across a kind of dark hallway because the guy looking down it is 30 feet away. If I was on post, I'd see that. I'm not blind, neither should the security forces in the ___ I'm infiltrating be. But I also don't want to see the crap that AI's do to pinpoint my exact location, I don't want absolute outcomes. It shouldn't be "he saw me, all AI are alerted." It should be "he caught a glimpse of me, informed those near him, and went to investigate. If he sees nothign, things return to normal, if something catches his attention during this, he encourages those near him to be on alert or investigate with him, and if he sees nothing, he should go back and assume it was nothing. Then, if any of them see anything after that, they should react knowing that they already saw one thing, this time it probably isn't a trick of the light and go to a higher state of alert.

The thing that makes the Stealth genre so often full of trial and error (which can be fun, don't get me wrong. That's how I played Alpha Protocol and I actually loved the stealth in that game) is the contrived AI. They do a lot of things that don't make any sense. Either they are completely mentally handicapped in one situation or psychic xray vision having super geniuses. Real humans can see more than 5 feet in front of them, they can hear someone sneaking up on them in most cases, and act organically. What I mean by organically is they do things that make sense, and are intelligent (ie, not walking the exact same path with the exact same timing every time) which lets the player predict the AI's behavior, but is also able to do something that isn't exactly as anticipated, so that the player has to adjust and adapt to a situation on the fly.

@anubite: When I played the first Assassin's Creed, the thing I loved about it was that all it really did for most of the assassinations was tell you who to kill, and give you suggestions on a good way to do so. I usually spent a lot of time investigating the area and planning out my kill to make sure I could get a clean kill and more importantly, a clean get away.

#78 Posted by StingingVelvet (569 posts) -

Stealth is one of my favorite genres and most of the things people bitch about it with it are things I actually enjoy. Hell, I even loved Velvet Assassin, great game IMO. It's important to remember when writing articles or reviewing games that humans are a diverse group and enjoy different things. How anyone can enjoy loot grinds like Borderlands or Diablo is beyond me, but people do... I enjoy stealth games, the "old traditional" kind complained about here.

#79 Posted by Lokno (385 posts) -

If they implemented rewind like Jeff suggested I think stealth could be pretty cool. Seriously, that was a great idea.

#80 Posted by Grievus (19 posts) -

I enjoyed Conviction. But maybe that's because I didn't ever really use the prepare and execute. It made things way too easy. But the stealth kills in that game were great.

#81 Posted by Fozimuth (170 posts) -

@Brodehouse said:

My main problem with stealth games is feeling like the prey when the story tells me I'm the predator. If Sam Fisher or the Hitman are supposed to be the most dangerous men in the world, how come they can lose a straight gunfight against common thugs? Solid Snake is the worst example, he's less effective with a gun or his fists than the common henchmen he's supposed to be superior to. Batman and Assassin's Creed nailed it, in that you're a predator who is using stealth because it's tactically efficient, not because you're clumsy and useless. Stealth should be a fun way to gain an advantage, not an arduous and annoying necessity to maintain.

If the game was actually about me being weak and incapable and having to hide just in order to stay alive, I would understand. That could be fun on its own, if it controlled well and you were shifting through hiding spots quick and clean. But they always try to make it intentionally clumsy and I hate that.

His name is 47, not "the Hitman." He uses stealth because he isn't supposed to exist. He's tough, but he's still just a tall dude with an expensive suit. He's not going to cartwheel out of danger or drop 20 feet and land on somebody. The first 2 games definitely were too clumsy and unforgiving, but Blood Money made some changes so that the game is more focused on planning and observing rather than memorizing the patrols of every single guard. Also being able to clear a whole mission with just a silenced pistol with a scope, because the guns are much more accurate.

As for Splinter Cell, it has the Tom Clancy name branded on it, and all of those games started off going for realism. Sam probably isn't wearing a heavy kevlar vest, and it doesn't matter how much of a badass you are in a gunfight because bullets still kill. Even if they are generic incompetent South American militants, it doesn't mean they can't aim a gun or their bullets are any less deadly. The same should apply to Snake, especially because some of the people he sneaks around actually are elite soldiers, but he's a bullet sponge and the games have always had clumsy controls, so I'm not sure if all this applies.

Sam and 47 are dangerous because they DON'T get shot. They aren't magically bullet-proof or avoid injury through sheer experience, it's because they're good at what they do, which is not being seen, and not being shot. I don't think a "real people" situation like the first 3 Splinter Cells or the Hitman games is comparable to an Italian nobleman with the world's strongest fingertips or freaking BATMAN. Not the same type of games, not the same types of stealth.

#82 Posted by Brodehouse (9518 posts) -

@Fozimuth said:

@Brodehouse said:

My main problem with stealth games is feeling like the prey when the story tells me I'm the predator. If Sam Fisher or the Hitman are supposed to be the most dangerous men in the world, how come they can lose a straight gunfight against common thugs? Solid Snake is the worst example, he's less effective with a gun or his fists than the common henchmen he's supposed to be superior to. Batman and Assassin's Creed nailed it, in that you're a predator who is using stealth because it's tactically efficient, not because you're clumsy and useless. Stealth should be a fun way to gain an advantage, not an arduous and annoying necessity to maintain.

If the game was actually about me being weak and incapable and having to hide just in order to stay alive, I would understand. That could be fun on its own, if it controlled well and you were shifting through hiding spots quick and clean. But they always try to make it intentionally clumsy and I hate that.

His name is 47, not "the Hitman." He uses stealth because he isn't supposed to exist. He's tough, but he's still just a tall dude with an expensive suit. He's not going to cartwheel out of danger or drop 20 feet and land on somebody. The first 2 games definitely were too clumsy and unforgiving, but Blood Money made some changes so that the game is more focused on planning and observing rather than memorizing the patrols of every single guard. Also being able to clear a whole mission with just a silenced pistol with a scope, because the guns are much more accurate.

As for Splinter Cell, it has the Tom Clancy name branded on it, and all of those games started off going for realism. Sam probably isn't wearing a heavy kevlar vest, and it doesn't matter how much of a badass you are in a gunfight because bullets still kill. Even if they are generic incompetent South American militants, it doesn't mean they can't aim a gun or their bullets are any less deadly. The same should apply to Snake, especially because some of the people he sneaks around actually are elite soldiers, but he's a bullet sponge and the games have always had clumsy controls, so I'm not sure if all this applies.

Sam and 47 are dangerous because they DON'T get shot. They aren't magically bullet-proof or avoid injury through sheer experience, it's because they're good at what they do, which is not being seen, and not being shot. I don't think a "real people" situation like the first 3 Splinter Cells or the Hitman games is comparable to an Italian nobleman with the world's strongest fingertips or freaking BATMAN. Not the same type of games, not the same types of stealth.

... Who made any reference to them getting shot? What are you talking about? Why does everyone think when I say "they can't handle a gun worth shit" I'm saying "they die too fast!"

Old stealth games forced you to use stealth because you couldn't do anything reliably. You were too weak and useless to be able to take a single person out unless you had snuck up on them. Has nothing to do with fighting huge groups of enemies or 'he shouldn't be able to take bullets'. It had to do with your accuracy being piss poor after 10 yards, enemies that could take bullets in the back and head and then raise alarms, mechanics and movement that are slow, awkward and clumsy., and any detection requires you to start the mission over because every enemy in the level knows exactly where you are permanently. And that's horseshit.

Conviction basically only fixed the movement and the detection trope and people got up in arms. Even though your enemies still took bullets and raised alarms, even though you can't reliably shoot anything more than 10 yards away. Giving you the ability to move and hide 'turned it into just another shooter'.

Bah, you know what, forget it. I'm never going to be able to convince demagogues to stop being demagogues.

#83 Posted by SuperLuigiBros (9 posts) -

Has anyone played Stealth Bastard?

http://www.stealthbastard.com/

2D platformer with stealth gameplay that is totally great. And it's free!

#84 Posted by JackOhara (227 posts) -

@Brodehouse said:

@Fozimuth said:

@Brodehouse said:

My main problem with stealth games is feeling like the prey when the story tells me I'm the predator. If Sam Fisher or the Hitman are supposed to be the most dangerous men in the world, how come they can lose a straight gunfight against common thugs? Solid Snake is the worst example, he's less effective with a gun or his fists than the common henchmen he's supposed to be superior to. Batman and Assassin's Creed nailed it, in that you're a predator who is using stealth because it's tactically efficient, not because you're clumsy and useless. Stealth should be a fun way to gain an advantage, not an arduous and annoying necessity to maintain.

If the game was actually about me being weak and incapable and having to hide just in order to stay alive, I would understand. That could be fun on its own, if it controlled well and you were shifting through hiding spots quick and clean. But they always try to make it intentionally clumsy and I hate that.

His name is 47, not "the Hitman." He uses stealth because he isn't supposed to exist. He's tough, but he's still just a tall dude with an expensive suit. He's not going to cartwheel out of danger or drop 20 feet and land on somebody. The first 2 games definitely were too clumsy and unforgiving, but Blood Money made some changes so that the game is more focused on planning and observing rather than memorizing the patrols of every single guard. Also being able to clear a whole mission with just a silenced pistol with a scope, because the guns are much more accurate.

As for Splinter Cell, it has the Tom Clancy name branded on it, and all of those games started off going for realism. Sam probably isn't wearing a heavy kevlar vest, and it doesn't matter how much of a badass you are in a gunfight because bullets still kill. Even if they are generic incompetent South American militants, it doesn't mean they can't aim a gun or their bullets are any less deadly. The same should apply to Snake, especially because some of the people he sneaks around actually are elite soldiers, but he's a bullet sponge and the games have always had clumsy controls, so I'm not sure if all this applies.

Sam and 47 are dangerous because they DON'T get shot. They aren't magically bullet-proof or avoid injury through sheer experience, it's because they're good at what they do, which is not being seen, and not being shot. I don't think a "real people" situation like the first 3 Splinter Cells or the Hitman games is comparable to an Italian nobleman with the world's strongest fingertips or freaking BATMAN. Not the same type of games, not the same types of stealth.

... Who made any reference to them getting shot? What are you talking about? Why does everyone think when I say "they can't handle a gun worth shit" I'm saying "they die too fast!"

Old stealth games forced you to use stealth because you couldn't do anything reliably. You were too weak and useless to be able to take a single person out unless you had snuck up on them. Has nothing to do with fighting huge groups of enemies or 'he shouldn't be able to take bullets'. It had to do with your accuracy being piss poor after 10 yards, enemies that could take bullets in the back and head and then raise alarms, mechanics and movement that are slow, awkward and clumsy., and any detection requires you to start the mission over because every enemy in the level knows exactly where you are permanently. And that's horseshit.

Conviction basically only fixed the movement and the detection trope and people got up in arms. Even though your enemies still took bullets and raised alarms, even though you can't reliably shoot anything more than 10 yards away. Giving you the ability to move and hide 'turned it into just another shooter'.

Bah, you know what, forget it. I'm never going to be able to convince demagogues to stop being demagogues.

I don't know what 'stealth' games you are playing, but if you are saying your character couldn't shoot accurately past 10 yards then are you are most definitely not playing Splinter Cell or Hitman. I've sniped people countless times in both games (with sniper rifles and silenced machine guns, SC2000K with a scope in Splinter Cell). In no Splinter Cell or Hitman game has there been 'any detection requires you to start the mission over because every enemy in the level knows exactly where you are permanently', discounting specific missions where no alarms was a requirement. You almost always have the opportunity to slip back into the shadows or get another disguise. Movement and controls in these games are deliberately made to be slower than most to give the game a more methodical pace. It really sounds like you want to play a shooter with some stealth elements, not a fully fledged stealth game. To quote Not the same type of games, not the same types of stealth'.

#85 Edited by Sooty (8082 posts) -

@Brodehouse said:

My main problem with stealth games is feeling like the prey when the story tells me I'm the predator. If Sam Fisher or the Hitman are supposed to be the most dangerous men in the world, how come they can lose a straight gunfight against common thugs?

Are you serious? Of course they can lose to a gunfight against multiples, they're still men, and men bleed when they get shot. Do you think the ending of Mr and Mrs Smith is what the Hitman and Splinter Cell games should be like? Good grief.

The danger of Fisher and 47 comes from their skills in stealth and CQC, not being able to withstand more bullets than any other man. It's still stupid how much damage you can take in most games when shot, and let's not get into boss fights that last 10 minutes despite you shooting the boss in the head 100 times. Fuckin' dumb. Video games.

#86 Posted by Brodehouse (9518 posts) -

@Sooty said:

@Brodehouse said:

My main problem with stealth games is feeling like the prey when the story tells me I'm the predator. If Sam Fisher or the Hitman are supposed to be the most dangerous men in the world, how come they can lose a straight gunfight against common thugs?

Are you serious? Of course they can lose to a gunfight against multiples, they're still men, and men bleed when they get shot. Do you think the ending of Mr and Mrs Smith is what the Hitman and Splinter Cell games should be like? Good grief.

The danger of Fisher and 47 comes from their skills in stealth and CQC, not being able to withstand more bullets than any other man. It's still stupid how much damage you can take in most games when shot, and let's not get into boss fights that last 10 minutes despite you shooting the boss in the head 100 times. Fuckin' dumb. Video games.

GAAAAAAAHHHH

#87 Posted by drizzlestick (2 posts) -

Ha

#88 Posted by littlehippie (16 posts) -

@gladspooky said:

@TentPole said:

@Brodehouse said:

I find it completely baffling that someone can like the first three Silent Hill games and think Downpour is junk. It's Silent Hill to a fault. Combat is clumsy, you run from most enemies and try to isolate the ones you do want to kill for safety. The puzzles actually make more sense now. If you hated the old games I would completely understand disliking Downpour. I think you might have some nostalgia or maybe you want to like the old games more than you actually liked playing them.

But it isn't hip to hate the old games and it is even less cool to like the new ones.

There's nothing cool about liking any video game over another.

You're either looking for "trendy" or "elitist," not "hipster."

As a trendy, elitist hipster I find this offensive.

Also, I'm better than you.

#89 Edited by Chroma_Auron (112 posts) -

@anubite: I agree.

Thief, the first 4 Splinter Cell games, Metal Gear series and Hitman are not "Trial and error games" as that implies failing stealth means a game over instantly. Those games are about thinking, planning and experimenting. Even if your plan goes wrong you can defend yourself with very little frustration. They are very much allow you to be predator as you are an unkown threat that can come out of nowhere. Predator does not mean killing swarms of enemies while being loud. What the author wants is plenty of hand holding and that is fine for an easy mode but their is a reason why stealth games many have difficulties to chose from and should.

My advice would be to play the game as it should be played, not how you want it to be played. I find it helps me like games that I would normally dislike and I'm talking about mainstream games like GTA.

#90 Posted by Chroma_Auron (112 posts) -

@GERALTITUDE: the Syphon filter series did have more trial and error stealth, but it did support stealth with the crouch function and predictable pathways that isolated enemies.

#91 Posted by Outlaw_Star421 (2 posts) -

Unit 13 has some great stealth action gameplay readily available for when you want to feel like a bad ass ninja! The best part is that most of the times it's not forced upon you so you can go in guns blazing if you like or silently murder in the shadows like a spook!

#92 Posted by Outlaw_Star421 (2 posts) -

@StingingVelvet: I agree with you 100% I find looting absolutely boring, yet 6.3 million Diablo III fans love it, go figure!

#93 Posted by Sammo21 (3199 posts) -

@popmasterruler: Your opinion. The Assassin's Creed games are what you make them. You can play predominantly stealth if you want or just go in and do action. They are stealth but only if you bother with it.

#94 Posted by Soapy86 (2619 posts) -

I love Giant Bomb. I really do. But they desperately need someone on staff who doesn't wince or whine at the thought of video games that aren't 100% aimed at the masses.

#95 Posted by BitterAlmond (401 posts) -

@Soapy86 said:

I love Giant Bomb. I really do. But they desperately need someone on staff who doesn't wince or whine at the thought of video games that aren't 100% aimed at the masses.

Jeff and Alex both love the mainstream games, and I don't think Ryan minds them much either.

Plus, your complaint is invalid in this case; this article is all about niche games coming into the spotlight. It is all about games aimed at the masses.

#96 Posted by Lind_L_Taylor (3962 posts) -
@littlehippie said:

@gladspooky said:

@TentPole said:

@Brodehouse said:

I find it completely baffling that someone can like the first three Silent Hill games and think Downpour is junk. It's Silent Hill to a fault. Combat is clumsy, you run from most enemies and try to isolate the ones you do want to kill for safety. The puzzles actually make more sense now. If you hated the old games I would completely understand disliking Downpour. I think you might have some nostalgia or maybe you want to like the old games more than you actually liked playing them.

But it isn't hip to hate the old games and it is even less cool to like the new ones.

There's nothing cool about liking any video game over another.

You're either looking for "trendy" or "elitist," not "hipster."

As a trendy, elitist hipster I find this offensive.

Also, I'm better than you.

Everyone relax. At least they found Spock's Beard in this article!
#97 Posted by Spectre767 (8 posts) -

I'd love to see some developers actually hit the mark with a stealth game, the perfect balance between the elements.

#98 Posted by Viggo (13 posts) -


stealth makes stealth games tick

#99 Posted by RedRoach (1174 posts) -

@anubite: Did you play AC1? You could not survive in that game without stealth, particularly near the end. It got to the point where the moment a guard see's you they were attacking you.

#100 Posted by Jedted (2317 posts) -

My problem with stealth games is not a lack of patience but when certain objectives have time limits that adds a lot of un wanted stress for me. Like is Assassin's Creed for example, when your tailing a target and you loose the line of sight. When i see the timer on the screen i quickly rush to find my target again and that sometimes leads to me making some dumb mistake and exposing myself to the gaurds.

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