Most overrated 2012

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#51 Posted by sdharrison (476 posts) -

haha okay man. Back this train up. I'll recap:

*I played TWD after all the GOTY, podcasts, awards, discussion, etc.

*I enjoyed it for its story, characters, voice acting and ability to mine tension out of dialog. However, I quickly discovered that its promises of player choice were an illusion, and significant chunks of the game are either devoid of gameplay (that is, things to do in the gameworld mechanically), or saddled with sequences that tend to detract from the flow and pace of the story.

*I reflected on that for a few minutes, and thought it was an interesting topic to discuss.

*I logged on to giantbomb.com and made a thread.

What you asked was how I reconciled the parity of opinion between the media and consumers. I said that isn't my business. IE: I don't know. All I know is, I feel like my case for this game being a textbook case of overpraise is airtight.

#52 Posted by MetalGearSunny (6986 posts) -

@Bourbon_Warrior said:

It's a cool story but really nothing else

fuck off Kenny

#53 Posted by sdharrison (476 posts) -

@notdavid said:

Some people like adventure games. Some people don't. You can't really judge a game based on standards put in place by genres it doesn't belong to. If you compare the shooting in episodes 3 and 4 to something like Call of Duty, of course it sucks. If you compare the puzzles to something like Braid, you're not going to get a lot out of them. But if you compare it to what the classic LucasArts adventures, King's Quest series, and Infocom text adventures did with using the medium of games to immerse the player in a world or story, TWD did some pretty mind-blowing stuff with the plot and actually improved on the game mechanics of adventure games in general.

Did it? I thought it told a very well acted story about death, loss and family set against society collapsing. Just like a lot of movies and books. Except I could WASD around, choose when to say certain lines and sometimes was asked to tap Q then E.

Then I thought it stripped out a lot of mechanics in service of telling a story, and didn't ask a whole lot of the player in terms of input beyond dialog.

Then it seemed like it told me my choices mattered when they actually didn't.

#54 Posted by StarvingGamer (7915 posts) -
@sdharrison Right, except for the fact that people can only speak to their own experiences. They aren't going to couch their opinions based on the fact that someone somewhere might not agree. TWD has plenty of shortcomings, but none of them took away from my enjoyment of the game or prevented it from being one of the most effectively affecting stories I've ever had the privilege to enjoy. TWD is rated appropriately, you just aren't looking for the same things as most other people when it comes to games.
#55 Posted by notdavid (815 posts) -

@sdharrison said:

@notdavid said:

Some people like adventure games. Some people don't. You can't really judge a game based on standards put in place by genres it doesn't belong to. If you compare the shooting in episodes 3 and 4 to something like Call of Duty, of course it sucks. If you compare the puzzles to something like Braid, you're not going to get a lot out of them. But if you compare it to what the classic LucasArts adventures, King's Quest series, and Infocom text adventures did with using the medium of games to immerse the player in a world or story, TWD did some pretty mind-blowing stuff with the plot and actually improved on the game mechanics of adventure games in general.

Did it? I thought it told a very well acted story about death, loss and family set against society collapsing. Just like a lot of movies and books. Except I could WASD around, choose when to say certain lines and sometimes was asked to tap Q then E.

Then I thought it stripped out a lot of mechanics in service of telling a story, and didn't ask a whole lot of the player in terms of input beyond dialog.

Then it seemed like it told me my choices mattered when they actually didn't.

Monkey Island didn't have player choice period. The Sam and Max series never had mechanics beyond light puzzle solving and dialog trees. Adventure games are all about creating a world to immerse the player in, and Walking Dead totally achieved what it set out to do in that regard. If you're only looking at the plot, any classic adventure game could be a book or movie. These games are more about immersion, though. And TWD succeeds at using the medium to immerse the audience.

#56 Edited by sdharrison (476 posts) -

@StarvingGamer:

I'm looking at how a game is released technically, what its gameplay consists of, what mechanics are in place and how they play out and how everything fits together as a cohesive package.

Is that not fair to do for a video game, or is TWD just a holy and untouchable NEW thing in media that musn't be subjected to such rough critique? Sorry man, but after reading posts here, I feel even stronger about my initial points. TWD was a solid interactive story, but lied about its mechanics, had pacing issues with gameplay, and was released with some significant technical issues.

Sorry, its the truth. Still a good game. Overrated.

#57 Posted by McGhee (6094 posts) -

YOU HAVE NO IDEA WHAT YOU ARE TALKING ABOUT DmC IS THE MOST OVERRATED GAEM OF 2012

#58 Posted by MegaMetaTurtle (414 posts) -
@MetalGearSunny

@Bourbon_Warrior said:

It's a cool story but really nothing else

fuck off Kenny

Hey, leave off! His wife and kids just died!


...

*Bourbon_Warrior will remember that*
#59 Posted by sdharrison (476 posts) -

hahaha

#60 Posted by BaconGames (3280 posts) -

Logically if you did not like a game that got game of the year awards, then by virtue of the delta size then yes it is the most overrated game of 2012 in your experience.

#61 Posted by StarvingGamer (7915 posts) -
@sdharrison You'd have a leg to stand on if it weren't for the fact that ratings are 100% subjective. Maybe if someone did a mechanical/technical analysis and gave TWD a 10/10 based solely on that, there'd be something worth discussing. But when it comes to something like a video game, mechanical and technical issues only matter as far as they impact your overall enjoyment.
#62 Posted by sdharrison (476 posts) -

@BaconGames said:

Logically if you did not like a game that got game of the year awards, then by virtue of the delta size then yes it is the most overrated game of 2012 in your experience.

This dude gets it.

#63 Posted by BaconGames (3280 posts) -

@sdharrison said:

@BaconGames said:

Logically if you did not like a game that got game of the year awards, then by virtue of the delta size then yes it is the most overrated game of 2012 in your experience.

This dude gets it.

I think the problem is more your bulletpoint criticism than the core logic of the post. Formatting it like that and throwing it on these boards is only asking for the very responses you got.

#64 Posted by MetalGearSunny (6986 posts) -

@MegaMetaTurtle said:

@MetalGearSunny

@Bourbon_Warrior said:

It's a cool story but really nothing else

fuck off Kenny

Hey, leave off! His wife and kids just died! ... *Bourbon_Warrior will remember that*

I DON'T CARE YOU KILLED LARRY YOU BASTARD

...but you're right Lily is a total bitch

#65 Posted by sdharrison (476 posts) -

@StarvingGamer said:

@sdharrison You'd have a leg to stand on if it weren't for the fact that ratings are 100% subjective. Maybe if someone did a mechanical/technical analysis and gave TWD a 10/10 based solely on that, there'd be something worth discussing. But when it comes to something like a video game, mechanical and technical issues only matter as far as they impact your overall enjoyment.

lol I get it man, you dug TWD. But my critique isn't subjective. It's overrated, but still good. The damn thing has issues that got glossed over. Significant, real issues.

#66 Posted by Klei (1768 posts) -

2012 was a particularly weak year in gaming. When downloadable titles gets GOTY, it usually means that the full retail competition wasn't all that strong. We clearly had good games, like ME3, Diablo3, Max Payne 3, Borderlands and Xcom, but that's about it. Walking Dead was a nice experience, but it was a very flawed one. Is it overrated? I think so. Because there's a lot of adventure point'n'click games out there that have a strong narrative and inventive puzzles but unfortunately, don't get much credit because they don't have zombies in it.

#67 Posted by sdharrison (476 posts) -

Oh and btw, enough of this "Subjective opinions are subjective so you can't have an opinion on that opinion but that's just my opinion."

We're talking about it. People that get paid money to review games said things about it. We're going to talk about that like it matters because it kind of does. Grow a pair and get ready for it.

#68 Posted by ImmortalSaiyan (4673 posts) -

@Klei said:

2012 was a particularly weak year in gaming.

I would disagree with this. I don't think 2012 is as bad a year as people are saying. A few fantastic games were released and many good ones as well.

#69 Edited by coakroach (2486 posts) -

It's incredible, fuck you.

#70 Posted by sdharrison (476 posts) -

@ImmortalSaiyan said:

@Klei said:

2012 was a particularly weak year in gaming.

I would disagree with this. I don't think 2012 is as bad a year as people are saying. A few fantastic games were released and many good ones as well.

I have been in both camps on this - all things considered, I've come around to the "2012 wasn't bad". I do think it was a mediocre year for AAA mass market games. But, I didn't play AC3 or Halo, so...

#71 Posted by Fredchuckdave (5174 posts) -

XCOM is more overrated, so there.

#72 Posted by sdharrison (476 posts) -

@coakroach said:

It's incredible, fuck you.

lol

#73 Posted by audioBusting (1461 posts) -

If it's not bad why is it "most overrated 2012", there are bad games/movies/people/etc being rated way too highly in 2012. It sounds like you're... baiting... for a specific kind of response here.

Online
#74 Posted by sdharrison (476 posts) -

@audioBusting said:

If it's not bad why is it "most overrated 2012", there are bad games/movies/people/etc being rated way too highly in 2012. It sounds like you're... baiting... for a specific kind of response here.

Because I think the gulf between what I heard/read/watched in praise of the game in comparison to some fundamental issues with it was larger than any other title I followed and played this year.

I don't get why this is hard to understand lol

#75 Posted by StarvingGamer (7915 posts) -
@sdharrison How is it not subjective? Objectively, the weak mechanics and technical flaws exist, yes. But the extent to which those issues detract from the experience is entirely up to the players. No one that I've listened to has glossed over these problems. The praise that the gaming press has heaped on TWD has always been couched in the acknowledgement of its shortcomings.

Your argument is 100% subjective.
#76 Edited by sdharrison (476 posts) -

You know what, I think you're right.

Hence, nothing is ever really worth discussing or criticizing, or reading, or doing, or seeing. It's all subjective. Let's just swallow poison juice and end this.

But really, The Walking Dead was hilariously overrated by a frothy gaming press and the zeitgeist of overhype was born. It was incredibly shallow in terms of gameplay, deceptively oversold its choice mechanics and shipped with considerable technical issues across all platforms. The praise train got going because it was a simple game to play with lots to talk about in a review. People love it because its a fabulous interactive story, and works well as a downloadable.

It is overrated. Sorry.

" Objectively, the weak mechanics and technical flaws exist, yes."

Great, case closed. That's my point.

And yes, obviously I understand your point: Doesn't matter because those shortcomings didn't have to do with how people FELT about the game because FEELINGS are subjective. Yep, understood. It's still overrated by the professional game media.

#77 Edited by PrimalHorse (71 posts) -

It sounds a lot like your expectations weren't met based on following the media's reaction. It took me years to get out of following games until release, xcom did catch me in its net I admit, I find often just a recommendation from a friend and going blind into games really helps me enjoy a game for what it is. Binary Domain was great fun as I had no idea what to really expect.

For what its worth on the mention of the choice system not working out to be truly unique. I never went in expecting some sort of mass effect define your Lee's tale experience, I got the impression the writers were trying to show that you can't always make a choice in harsh conditions but you have to make a decision, in that respect I really enjoyed it, because making some of those decisions felt rough on the nerves. I felt it was best enjoyed in the moment, I think it was that great connection that has spurred such a buzz, because its rare to get that kind of experience from a video game. That sucks about technical difficulties though, I played it on pc and was lucky to not encounter anything.

#78 Posted by sdharrison (476 posts) -

@PrimalHorse said:

It sounds a lot like your expectations weren't met based on following the media's reaction. It took me years to get out of following games until release, xcom did catch me in its net I admit, I find often just a recommendation from a friend and going blind into games really helps me enjoy a game for what it is. Binary Domain was great fun as I had no idea what to really expect.

That's fair to say. I admit I was surprised at how little was delivered with the choices though - that was shocking regardless of my expectations.

#79 Posted by StarvingGamer (7915 posts) -
@sdharrison So because you don't understand the difference between objective and subjective you're going to take your ball and go home? I have no problem with you not liking the game, and if I thought there was anything approaching an intelligent conversation to be had with you I would have engaged you on those terms. But until you stop trying to insist that your subjective opinion is the objective truth, there's no discussion to be had.

Yes, the game has shallow mechanics. Yes, there are numerous technical flaws. But none of those problems detracted from the game enough to stop it from being the most memorable experience of 2012 for myself and a majority of the gaming press. That is our subjective truth.
#80 Posted by floodiastus (1262 posts) -

@sdharrison said:

Late to the party, and victim to all the hype, I finally finished TWD today. Not bad, but the way the whole gaming press got weak in the knees for this title is baffling to me.

*Choices don't matter that much.

*Actual gameplay mechanics are incredibly weak

*Every version of the game has technical shortcomings

*Xbox version is straight up broken on 4gb machines, and nobody really seemed to care all that much in the mainstream press.

It's a solid character driven story with excellent voice acting that does some interesting things with tension. It has pacing problems, lack of gameplay mechanics, technical problems and oversells the impact of your choices.

Ever heard of "greater than the sum of it's parts" ?

#81 Posted by sdharrison (476 posts) -

@floodiastus:

The Affleck movie about nuclear war?

#82 Posted by floodiastus (1262 posts) -

@Fredchuckdave said:

XCOM is more overrated, so there.

This, I loved the original x-com and although I don't have a problem with them remaking it and simplifying things. It just did not hold my attention very much, it felt a little clunky tbh.

I am also a HUGE turn-based fan, but still something was missing and I cannot put my finger on what it is. :(

I will still vote that game up any day though since we must encourage turn based games.

All in all, the GOTY choices were such an optimistic look into the future of gaming. Both adventure games AND turn based games made a come back which is reassuring in an age where military shooters seemed to step in and take over everything previous years.

#83 Posted by project343 (2809 posts) -

While all your points are certainly something you could argue for, The Walking Dead was still the best narrative experience of 2012 for me (video game or otherwise). It is leagues ahead of Bioware stuff narratively (which I adore), it puts all the other Walking Dead content to shame, and it marks a hopeful future for the adventure game genre.

#84 Posted by TheStandardToaster (116 posts) -

@project343: spot on

#85 Posted by project343 (2809 posts) -

@sdharrison said:

@StarvingGamer said:

@sdharrison You'd have a leg to stand on if it weren't for the fact that ratings are 100% subjective. Maybe if someone did a mechanical/technical analysis and gave TWD a 10/10 based solely on that, there'd be something worth discussing. But when it comes to something like a video game, mechanical and technical issues only matter as far as they impact your overall enjoyment.

lol I get it man, you dug TWD. But my critique isn't subjective. It's overrated, but still good. The damn thing has issues that got glossed over. Significant, real issues.

But they weren't glossed over. They were talked about again and again by nearly every outlet... yet most of them still felt the experience that the game delivered outweighs whatever inconsequential or trivial issues it has.

#86 Posted by TheStandardToaster (116 posts) -

@project343: brad repeatedly said in the bombcast that it was fucked on the xbox version but it did not stop him from having a great experience.

#87 Posted by Mirado (983 posts) -

Why the fuck are so many people trying to club this duder to death?

He didn't mention DmC or sexism, after all.

#88 Posted by sdharrison (476 posts) -

Here's an idea for a game that will take the gaming world by storm:

Cormack McCarthy's "The Road". Cell shade the characters from the movie, separate the dialog into trees and use existing audio from the actors. Split it into various vignettes that involve walking around slowly and clicking on points of interest to gather items to trigger more dialog. When tense moments come up, use a simple quicktime mechanic that either moves the story or failstates. Add in some emotionally evocative music and DONE. Surely that'll net 5 stars, 10/10s, and 95%s from every major publication.

#89 Posted by floodiastus (1262 posts) -

@sdharrison said:

@floodiastus:

The Affleck movie about nuclear war?

wish I had a fish so I could IRC slap you!

#90 Posted by Psykhophear (939 posts) -

The Walking Dead deserves its popularity and fame because it successfully brought Adventure games back to the mainstream audience. It's also amazing that the developer managed to make a zombie game without emphasizing too much on the typical violence and gore settings. Instead, it was more on the story and the characters; and I thought it was a brilliant game design.

About the game mechanic flaws; it's an Adventure game. It's meant to not have solid controls but terrific storyline instead. I grew up playing Adventure games on DOS and I had no trouble playing the Walking Dead from start to finish.

#91 Posted by Ryuku_Ryosake (202 posts) -

All in all The Walking Dead was the best game of 2012. Sure you had a lot of games with perfect mechanics and little to no technical issues but TWD resonated much more with a large section of the gaming community. I would hazard to guess some of the reasoning behind that has to do with a lot of games with 3 at the end and it being real late into the console cycle. Basically right game, right place, and right time lead to TWD being the best game of 2012.

#92 Posted by KrypticKiller (190 posts) -

@ChinaDontCare said:

It was my Dark Knight Rises of 2012, so much Hype really not that good in any way.

That movie was indeed shit. The Walking dead was a great game though.

#93 Posted by project343 (2809 posts) -

@sdharrison said:

Here's an idea for a game that will take the gaming world by storm:

Cormack McCarthy's "The Road". Cell shade the characters from the movie, separate the dialog into trees and use existing audio from the actors. Split it into various vignettes that involve walking around slowly and clicking on points of interest to gather items to trigger more dialog. When tense moments come up, use a simple quicktime mechanic that either moves the story or failstates. Add in some emotionally evocative music and DONE. Surely that'll net 5 stars, 10/10s, and 95%s from every major publication.

Adorable. :)

#94 Edited by sdharrison (476 posts) -

I'd wager that there are people are at Telltale thinking "Really? Okay... " to the effusive praise.

Good for them, and good for the genre that it got plucked this year to be resurrected. I would love to see more story driven games that put a premium on voice acting. Maybe pretty soon we might get some that involve solid, fleshed out gameplay, a stable engine and true choice and consequence. TWD was a great interactive story, but it has to be judged also as a piece of gaming software. Again, it's good. Not great.

#95 Posted by sdharrison (476 posts) -

And to be fair, I think it's most important contribution was as a cold shower for the game development industry. Gee, maybe it actually PAYS to inject a little emotion into your projects

#96 Posted by StarvingGamer (7915 posts) -

@sdharrison said:

TWD was a great interactive story, but it has to be judged also as a piece of gaming software. Again, it's good. Not great.

Sure, by your subjective opinion. And by the subjective opinion of the majority, it was one of the greatest pieces of gaming software of 2012.

#97 Edited by sdharrison (476 posts) -

Wrong. It wasn't.

;)

It's overrated. Want me to repeat the reasons again so you can say some stuff about opinions again?

And also, quit speaking for the majority lol. I'm only talking about the gaming press, not humanity

#98 Posted by StarvingGamer (7915 posts) -

@sdharrison: No, it's clear that you're not willing to comprehend the difference between subjective and objective.

And you're right, I should let the majority speak for themselves.

#99 Posted by ValiantGrizzly (498 posts) -

"All these other people's opinions are clearly wrong, they are simply too dumb to describe the quality of this game - I alone am capable of this."

This thread, in a sentence.

#100 Posted by sdharrison (476 posts) -

@StarvingGamer said:

@sdharrison: No, it's clear that you're not willing to comprehend the difference between subjective and objective.

And you're right, I should let the majority speak for themselves.

Nah, I'm just trolling you man - relax.

I still fully stand by my statements though. Even more than when we started this discussion. My opinion of the game might have actually gone down even. The more I think about it, the less credit I think it deserves.

It has a very emotionally manipulative story and score, and the keystone element of the game is evoking emotion. I'm not sure how to break this to everyone but... That happens a lot. In music, in movies, in books. It's a regular thing, with literal books written on how to do it. The ONLY thing TWD does, is apply those tropes and mechanisms to a downloadable video game with barebones systems, gameplay and technical stability. If having an emotional response to animated characters is such a profound and moving experience, go watch WALL-E and prepare to lose your mind in complete ecstasy.

TWD is very, VERY close to being just a digital movie. And while everyone may think it's the revitalization of the adventure genre, I'd be very careful what you wish for.

Overrated.

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