Spec Ops Multiplayer Is a "Cancerous Growth"

#1 Posted by SharkEthic (1004 posts) -

http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/119332-Spec-Ops-Multiplayer-Is-a-Cancerous-Growth

It's really refreshing hearing a the lead designer of a game being so candid about a subject like this, and I couldn't agree with him more.

Granted, the campaign is only roughly 4 hours long, but the story is pretty much perfectly paced and would only have suffered from more padding in part due to the tedious gun play. In a perfect world, 2K would have just left well enough alone, had the developers make the game they really wanted to make, left out the multiplayer and released the whole thing for $30.

Anyway, that's my two cents, and I have to admit that I never even touched the multiplayer, so I guess my question is: Did any of you guys play the multiplayer? And did you feel like it added something good to the Spec Ops experience? Or did you, like me, think it's mere existence actually detracted from the whole thing?

#2 Posted by Phatmac (5721 posts) -

Seems like he's being honest, but I don't see any reason that they could have at least done something to improve the multiplayer. Perhaps not with the gameplay, but add some story or an interesting situation in multiplayer? I'm speaking of sheer ignorance, but I find it odd that the lead designer would throw Darkside studios under the bus. While I feel some sympathy for Yeager I don't believe that we're getting the full story here.

#3 Posted by MiniPato (2721 posts) -

Having not played Spec Ops, I still agree with the sentiment. Don't cram multiplayer in where it isn't needed. It's a waste of resources for something people will never play or only play for 30 minutes and decide they want to go back to Call of Duty. But a lot of people do judge whether they'll buy a game or not based on how much playability they get out of it and multiplayer is an easy way to try and win them over.

#4 Posted by SharkEthic (1004 posts) -

@Phatmac said:

Seems like he's being honest, but I don't see any reason that they could have at least done something to improve the multiplayer. Perhaps not with the gameplay, but add some story or an interesting situation in multiplayer? I'm speaking of sheer ignorance, but I find it odd that the lead designer would throw Darkside studios under the bus. While I feel some sympathy for Yeager I don't believe that we're getting the full story here.

From the little I've seen of the multiplayer, Cory Davis' version is pretty much exactly like I imagined it going down. A bunch of suits yelling at them to tag on a multiplayer component because, well, because Call of Duty and it's trail of money. It's all speculation and we only have one persons point of view on the matter, but I bet it's fairly close to being the full story.

#5 Posted by Ravenlight (8040 posts) -

The multiplayer in Spec Ops: The Line is the platonic ideal of "tacked-on." Like, if you look close enough, you can see the scotch tape holding it together.

I'm actually glad that they didn't dedicate more than what seems like the bare minimum of resources to the multiplayer, because the work they did on the campaign is so good.

#6 Posted by Yummylee (21260 posts) -

Crap, it's just occurred to me that I still haven't played Spec Ops yet! But yeah, I agree with you entirely. I have no interest in the multiplayer, which is shared amongst most I'm sure, and Spec Ops would have served better as a single-player only game released at budget price, perhaps even as an exclusively digital release at that. It certainly would have pushed me to buy Spec Ops: The Line sooner rather than later; I mean it's still mostly being priced at around £30 on consoles, which is ludicrous.

I'm only speaking here for myself of course. Given the amount of years and resources they may have dumped into Spec Ops, it's possible that they couldn't afford to release it any lower than £40/$60 and decided to ship in some shoddy multiplayer addition so as to justify the price a little more.

#7 Posted by jonnyboy (2920 posts) -

Even games where it's not entirely bad, it can feel really out of place, like Mass Effect 3, Bioshock 2, Dead Space 2, Rage (ID game with no deathmatch but car combat?).

I don't always think it's a bad thing though, Uncharted 2&3 took their unnecessary Multiplayer and did some pretty interesting things with the co-op aspects of it.

#8 Edited by Tennmuerti (8005 posts) -

Wow he totally shits all over that other studio (Darkside).

No matter how right he is about the MP, that is a completely shitty and distastefull way to say it. There are simple ways to be more tactfull about it and it comes down to being a decent human being yourself. He is basically absolving their own studio of all guilt while shoveling all the shit on others. Especially when it comes to completely smearing partners you have worked with. Who knows what timelines, resources or budgets they had to work with. He could have easily brought up all those issues without resorting to such heated childlish mud slinging.

Bad form.

#9 Posted by Shaka999 (453 posts) -

I don't see why publishers want to force a multiplayer component onto everything. Yeah, Call of Duty makes bunches and bunches of money, but adding multiplayer components hasn't worked for... well, any other non-triple A release. Part of me thinks it's that current major publishers (like 2K) are stuck on that $60 price point, so rather than sell a short single player game for $30, they decided to attached a half-assed multiplayer and up the price. (Yeah I know that's probably not accurate, but who knows)

#10 Posted by Demoskinos (14563 posts) -

I played a few rounds of it and its like... okay... I guess? I mean there isn't anything inherently worse about the gameplay than the campaign its just there is ZERO reason to give two shits about it. If your going to invest in a military shooter for multiplayer its going to be Call of Duty or Battlefield. I've been yelling about this for years now. Having a good single player experience is enough sometimes. No multiplayer , No Co-op just focusing on making the Single Player experience worth coming back to again and again.

#11 Edited by Tennmuerti (8005 posts) -

Not surprised at the escapist crowd (reading their comments) holding up "truth" as some kind of sacred torch.

Brings to mind countless anecdotes and folk cautionary tales of many cultures on the subject of going overboard with the whole "full on hardcore truth all the time" shtick.

Just because what you are saying to peoples faces is naked truth doesn't mean you aren't a giant asshole.

(even tho i agree with the overall tacked on MP sentiment)

#12 Posted by Torrim (327 posts) -

If you're going to make a game that took about four and a half hours to complete and ask for a full retail price for it, consumers are going to weight it out. Just having multiplayer is probably enough for some people on the fence to drop down the cash. You just can't get away with releasing a shooter without multiplayer these days and the reviews would have hammered the game for it.

#13 Posted by The_Nubster (2047 posts) -

Like others have said, he was kind of a complete fucker about saying it, even though it's really obvious at how half-assed and unnecessary the multiplayer component is.

#14 Posted by Lazyaza (2167 posts) -

Yep, game didn't need it at all. The only reason anyone should check out Spec Ops is for the fucking awesome campaign. In 4 hours I had a more meaningful, satisfying and memorable experience with Spec Ops than I did any other shooter this generation.

#15 Edited by Ravenlight (8040 posts) -

After actually reading the article (who does that?) I've got to agree with . Yager lead designer Cory Davis' comments about the Darkside's (studio that worked on the MP) efforts are just distasteful.

The multiplayer game's tone is entirely different, the game mechanics were raped to make it happen, and it was a waste of money,

The MP is definitely lackluster but damn. This motherfucker is burning bridges left and right.

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