flackbyte's forum posts

Avatar image for flackbyte
flackbyte

98

Forum Posts

60

Wiki Points

1

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

@peacebrother: Missing out on the discussions of specific games is not as much of a problem as the segmentation itself, because it makes some macro stuff harder like deconstruction, intertextuality, talking about the medium etc.

Avatar image for flackbyte
flackbyte

98

Forum Posts

60

Wiki Points

1

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

#2  Edited By flackbyte

@peacebrother: Just to be clear, I don't have fear of missing out. I play what I play and miss a lot of stuff. The point is that, because everyone does that, talking about video games as a medium is harder.

Avatar image for flackbyte
flackbyte

98

Forum Posts

60

Wiki Points

1

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

@jkz said:

Man if you think video games are paralyzing in that regard try picking out a book. My "to read asap" list is a good 60ish books long and I'm still a couple hundred years behind new releases.

That is a great point. I read a lot and I don't have the same problem. Possibly because I like old books. The only way for me to read and be in an environment to have a conversation about it is having a book club, which I already do and love.

Avatar image for flackbyte
flackbyte

98

Forum Posts

60

Wiki Points

1

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

#4  Edited By flackbyte

@void said:

Haven't you heard? This is the best time to be playing video games.

Look at it this way: The games you don't play will still be there waiting for you later and will be in an even better shape and more affordable than at launch in most cases. They're not ruined. (Except for multiplayer games, if you wait too long.)

Again. Looking at them just as products, you are 100% right.

The problem to me is that the best time to have a discussion about a given game even with the fragmented gaming audience is at release, when the most people will have played it at more or less the same time. The only way to play older games and have a discussion about it is having some sort of gaming book club. I've tried it. It's hard to coordinate people to do that.

Avatar image for flackbyte
flackbyte

98

Forum Posts

60

Wiki Points

1

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

@dray2k: Just to be clear. The times I put are just to get to credits in a games. 100% takes twice or more the times I posted. Also talking about art is really important for the development of a given art form, my point is that is much harder, nigh impossible with games. The "you don't have to complete it" is questionable, imagine if I said to you "I read half of the first Lord of the Rings Book, I got the feel of it. Here's my analysis.".

Avatar image for flackbyte
flackbyte

98

Forum Posts

60

Wiki Points

1

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

This is just a thing that's been bugging me. So let me throw some numbers, talk a bunch and you tell me what you make of it, okay?

204*.

That's the number of all movies that had a limited or wide release in Theaters in the US and/or Canada in 1985.

Some more numbers:

4207*.

That's the number of games released on Steam in 2016. Not all games, not even all PC games; that's just the games on Steam that year.

At first glance the problem seems to be that Steam, or any marketplace, needs quality control. That's not new, it does; but that doesn't solve what to me seems to me an unsolvable problem related to video games. Too many good games.

To illustrate that, let's go back to 1985 and look at a "busy" release schedule looks like in movies:

  • Rambo: First Blood Part 2 (96 min) - May 22
  • Fletch (98 min) - May 31
  • Goonies (114min) - June 7

16 days. 3 (arguably) good movies come out. People can watch, re-watch, talk about them, have opinions, change their opinions. Even being released close to each other, they have room to breathe.

Now Back to 2017. Let's take a look at what a busy week looks like in Video Games:

  • Horizon Zero Dawn (21h*) - Feb 28
  • Torment: Tides of Numerara (27h*) - Feb 28
  • The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild (44h*) - March 3
  • Nier: Automata (19h*) - March 7

7 days between Horizon and Nier. Three good¹ games come out. You have 7 days to play Horizon, Torment and Zelda before Nier comes out. Mainlining the three games will take you 92 hours. That just playing them beginning till end, not stopping to look around or do side stuff. 13 hours per day. Playing in the most efficient, unwasteful and unfun manner possible. Just once. Beginning to end. Not letting them breathe. Not that you have the time, because, shit, it's a week later and you have at least 19 more hours to put on Nier: Automata.

Curation doesn't solve that problem. Those are four good games. There's nothing in them that wouldn't pass quality control.

If you just look at games as products to be consumed, this is a dumb problem. The more variety of products in the market the better for the consumer. Curation is enough not to let the trash in and people will play what they want to play.

But looking at games as an art form, that starts to present a problem to me. Too many games fragments the gaming audience. Who has time or money to experiment, to explore new games when you have too many of them? Who, that wasn't already a fan, took time this year to try out Persona 5? Probably not too many people. What about Divinity 2? That's a really good game. It's also a good game that will take you at least 56 hours.

Fragmentation makes it harder to talk about video games as a medium, as an art form. It's harder for other games to use intertextuality, deconstruction, or subversion - things that require a common vocabulary. It's harder for people to talk about something if they are not speaking the same language.

Even people whose job is to play games can't handle the amount being released. In a couple of weeks the staff of Giant Bomb is going to sit down and talk about the games they played this year. If you been listening to the podcasts, you know you can expect a lot of "yeah...I fell out of it" and "that didn't seem like my kind of game so I didn't play it".

Not throwing shade at GB here, this is a problem for everyone outside and inside of games coverage.

There are too many games. Too many good games. Good games that don't have enough time to breathe before the next one comes out.

Just wanted to put that thought out there. I don't know what to make of it. Maybe someone else will

¹ - Good enough that they should be played and talked about.

Avatar image for flackbyte
flackbyte

98

Forum Posts

60

Wiki Points

1

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

Just an update. As good as this game is in terms of mechanics and the first half of the puzzles, it kinda runs out of steam in the second half. There isn't much effort to tie in the dialogue to most of the puzzles and the difficulty curve take an astounding hike with a whole new mechanism being introduced on the second half of the last chapter! There's much to love in this game, but the ending made me feel little bit cheated.

Avatar image for flackbyte
flackbyte

98

Forum Posts

60

Wiki Points

1

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

This might be my favorite zachlike yet. Loved all of them so far (have yet to play infinifactory), but the polish and reasonableness of the difficulty curve in Opus Magnum are really good. Also, can we talk that they designed an original solitaire abstract board game AS AN ASIDE to the game?! Really solid game.

Avatar image for flackbyte
flackbyte

98

Forum Posts

60

Wiki Points

1

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

I smiled my way through this video remembering a great segment in UPF in which they watched his coverage of E3 1997.

Loading Video...

I love how he clarifies: "curvature of the 'P'...Fuck-Man!"

Here's the UPF segment:

Loading Video...

Avatar image for flackbyte
flackbyte

98

Forum Posts

60

Wiki Points

1

Followers

Reviews: 0

User Lists: 0

#10  Edited By flackbyte

@billymaysrip Thanks, but I'm looking for buddies to compete in leaderboards in general. Just simple One-upmanship and having a reason for getting scores in games. You know?

But thanks for the recommendation. I'll check it out.