MeatBoy's forum posts

#1 Posted by MeatBoy (51 posts) -

Go play some Sleeping Dogs. It's a great game in and of itself, not to mention that it's perfect as a break from XCOM when the strategizing gets to heavy. Just take some time to enjoy the great atmosphere and cool characters of SD in stead. I've done all that I feel like doing in that game (most side missions except for some grindy stuff), and I really hope they make some more quality story DLC.

I have only played XCOM for a few hours and I love it, but I plan on taking my time and playing it in smaller chunks. I think it will be more enjoyable that way.

#2 Edited by MeatBoy (51 posts) -

@Winternet: I agree that it can be seen as a reductive definition, but it depends on how you interpret "interesting decisions". Either way I used it only to make that specific point. It´s actually really more about what makes a good game as apposed to either a bad one or something that isn´t a game. (again from a systems perspective)

Wouldn´t you say that in a good game, the decision to either shoot the guy behind the barrel or the guy in the window, can be expected to be an interesting one? (In the sense that choosing on or the other represent different strategies and has different consequences.)

#3 Posted by MeatBoy (51 posts) -

@EXTomar said:

@Masakari said:

I agree with them... So yeah. Stuff like Flower or Dear Esther arent video games, imo. They are interactive experiences.

So you mean they are like all video games since it seems that video games feature interactive experiences.

That's just bad logic. Games feature interactive experiences, but that doesn't mean that all interactive experiences are games.

#4 Posted by MeatBoy (51 posts) -

@Winternet said:

one could have an argument that To The Moon is more of a game than The Walking Dead ever was.

How so?

I say The Walking Dead is a game. To The Moon is way harder to define.

The difference? Let's pick a definition to compare with. Sid Meyers classic definition is simple and straight forward: A game is a series of interesting decisions. (It doesn't necessarily cover everything perfectly, but it's good enough to get the point across.)

Does The Walking Dead have interesting decisions? Hell Yeah.

Does To The Moon have interesting decisions? Hm...

What ever your answer is, this sums up why this discussion exists to begin with.

@FearMyFlop said:

If it's an interactive world I can manipulate in any way, it's a game.

Nope, that could just be a simulation. A simulation isn't necessarily a game. If you add rules and goals that require you making interesting decisions to proceed, your getting somewhere. Of course you could just add those rules and goals yourself and turn a simulation into a game.

@Oldirtybearon said:

I think where the disconnect occurs is in the term itself. Video game. It's an archaic phrase that was only ever coined to highlight the fact that games were played on a screen. The "games" we have now can hardly be classified as "games" in the traditional sense, but yet we still cling to that phrase because we haven't come up with something more apt yet.

Hopefully it'll happen soon, because if I have to listen to another ignorant crackhead say The Walking Dead isn't a REAL game, I'm liable to break a 40oz over their head.

Video games are actually more closely related to games in general than you might think. My guess is most game designers will tell you that designing game systems is very similar, regardless of whether the medium is digital or analog. If you think about it, whether you're playing XCOM or Battlefield, the similarities to many board games are pretty obvious. Some experiences push the limits of what can be defined as a game though, but does that really mean that we need a whole new word for the whole phenomenon?

@Gargantuan said:

If TWD isn't a game then none of the classic point and click adventure games are games and that would be fucked up. I don't see how this is even a discussion.

Classic point and click adventure games have puzzles. Puzzles are obviously games. TWD has some puzzles, but it's more about the choices you make which also makes it a game from my perspective at least. Does To the Moon have puzzles. Not really, right? That's why it's a discussion.

#5 Edited by MeatBoy (51 posts) -

I play PC games on my 40 inch TV all the time but I probably wouldn't use it as my primary display. Bigger screen gives lower pixel density when resolution stays the same. At 40 inches that makes text kind of uncomfortable to read. A smaller screen size might be fine though. Also as far as I know a lot of TVs won't support more than 60Hz input which is great for gaming, that can also be kind of uncomfortable while reading.

A TV might also give you a problem with input lag if you like playing with a mouse and keyboard. At least make sure you get a TV that has some kind of "game mode" to minimize input lag. You won't notice any input lag as much if you play with a controller though. If you didn't notice input lag with the TV you already have, maybe it's won't be a problem for you either way.

Also, changing inputs and settings can be kind of slow and clunky on many TVs.

#6 Edited by MeatBoy (51 posts) -
#7 Posted by MeatBoy (51 posts) -

Wonder what retail is thinking now.

#8 Posted by MeatBoy (51 posts) -

Thanks for all the great replies.

@LikeaSsur said:

I agree with this. A lot of people hated what happened in episode 3, but I thought it was great. It's kinda like real life: Just because you said Sentence A does not mean you will get Consequence A. That's just how life works.

Exactly. Also, games might have choices, but not necessarily the choices you want. That's something people should come to grips with. Again, it's just like real life.

@Klei said:

Well, I didn't see it that way. To me, it felt more like '' hey, its cool you chose something, but we're bringing you back to ours because it's easier to make a general ending that way ''. I felt like none of my choices mattered. The whole '' .... remembers you told the truth, remembers you being rude '' etc didn't really matter at all so far, even towards the characters who just end up dying a couple minutes later. I feel like whatever I'm going to choose, it won't matter in the end.

I think you should rethink what it actually means that something "matters". This explains it quite well:

@YI_Orange said:

Second, this is probably cliche, but it's the journey that matters, not the destination.

You could say it doesn't matter whether you save Doug or Carley because they both die anyway, but it does. They're totally different characters and I ended up so attached to Carley I got legitimately pissed at Lily.

Choosing to kill the first brother in the barn. Is that gonna matter in the long run? I sincerely doubt it, but in that moment where it showed Clem looking at me, I felt like shit. That's what's important to an experience.

Not every decision is going to impact the end, but it's going to impact something, whether it is the way parts of the story play out or how the player reacts to the events.

This is exactly what I mean. The players experience during the game isn't cancelled out by characters dying. The events still happened and they affected you the way they did, no matter what happens next.

Also, this is an important point I didn't really touch on:

@WilliamHenry said:

I think the people who want the story to be tailored to their exact choices don't understand the technical limitations of the medium. This isn't a choose your own adventure book where you can just write the choices. Making video games is incredibly difficult and expensive. I don't think the medium is advanced enough technically to truly create a game that is tailored exactly to a player's choices. It will get there eventually, but its not there yet.

I'm just not so sure it's what the industry should be striving for. While branching storylines can be cool, it's not the most important part of a good game narrative. Also, the technical limitations might go away at some point (or already have), but the economic ones probably won't.

There's also something to be said about the fact that crafting just one compelling, dramatic, dynamic, entertaining storyline, is hard enough. Making a bunch of variations that are just as good, is next to impossible. I think I'd rather have the best version the writer can manage, than risk getting something mediocre, just because I expect the luxury of choosing.

#9 Posted by MeatBoy (51 posts) -

!!!The Walking Dead Spoilers ahead!!!

This post is partly a reply to this blogpost by . In stead of going on and on in a comment, I decided to make my own post. Go read it first though to get some context.

In short, the post I link to above make some great points about choices in games like The Walking Dead, and how suspension of disbelief is important to the experience.

I would just like to add that this isn't just about illusion of choice. It's also about what people expect from choices in games. I have always been puzzled by the fact that some people, knowingly or not, seem to define "player choice" as being able to decide the outcome of games. What I feel that both Mass Effect and The Walking Dead do well, is presenting you with meaningful and affecting choices along the way, but not letting you decide the outcome of their stories.

An obvious example is in The walking Dead where I can save Carly/Doug once, but he/she dies later on because of what Lily does. That doesn't make my choice meaningless. I still made a choice that affected my character and the group. Not to mention myself as the player. The events that follow just didn't play out like I wanted them to. In this case that should be considered a good narrative twist, not a shortcoming of the game. For me at least, this was the most powerful moment in the game yet. It made me really angry, and that's not because it was unavoidable on a mechanical level, but rather because it was avoidable within the narrative. Lily didn't have to shoot that character that I cared about, and that made it all the more affecting.

It seems to me that people who focus too much on controlling consequences, are too concerned with the mechanics of player choice and forget about the role playing aspect. The only thing you should be able to do is make the choices you think are right. What consequences those choices have, aren't up to you (just like in real life, I might add). Sometimes they affect the narrative outcome and sometimes they don't. Either way they can affect both your perception of your character and your experience with the game and that's the most important thing, right? Whether or not the outcome of those choices manifest as different endings, branching storylines or something else, isn't that important to the players experience. (Although that can be cool of course).

To sum up my point, there is a difference between choosing between alternatives presented to you, and being able to choose the outcome. Games should be about making interesting and hard choices, not choosing consequences. After all, what's interesting about that?

#10 Posted by MeatBoy (51 posts) -

@Ares42: I couldn't agree more. Seems like they thought that the flashy xp popups and loot would replace the sense of adventure the last game had without anyone noticing. Disappointing to say the least. Simply put, grinding is not fun.