A Defence of Resident Evil Survival Horror Controls.

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#51 Edited by Stonyman65 (3806 posts) -

I've never had a problem with those controls. I totally understand why people would hate them, but I think it actually worked in the game's favor to help add tension and some strategy to the movement. Half the fun of those games was going "oh shit, what's around this corner? What can't I see?" and when you did have to bail out, it was even more "oh shit oh shit oh shit don't screw up!"

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#52 Edited by Yummylee (24646 posts) -

@fitzgerald said:

I haven't had time to read it yet, but the formatting and layout of this post is beautiful! This is literally the best looking forum post I have ever seen.

lol ta. Though I would say it's probably formatted about on par with most of the other blogs that get posted around here.

@onekillwonder_ said:

That said, even as a huge fan of old school survival horror, I don't think a survival horror title needs those controls to work. They are a defining characteristic of the genre from that era, not the genre as a whole. I do really miss camera angles, though...there's something really intriguing about seeing exactly what the developer wants you to see at any given time. It's great for sustaining tension, and in certain cases, giving a game a real cinematic feel that would otherwise be lost.

Yeah, course. The Last of Us primarily plays like a game of the modern era, yet still encompasses a lot of the concepts one associates with survival horror. Though as it goes on it definitely situates itself more into that of a straight action game, with most combat encounters commonly requiring you to kill everything to move on. Though the vulnerability of Joel by way of his static health, shakey aim, and of course scarce resources at hand still stand for a lot of what I enjoy about survival horror. But giving the player more opportunities to potentially sneak if not run past encounters with infected/hunters I would have definitely appreciated.

And then there's still The Evil Within, which looks to play very much like RE4 at first glance only with your ability to move & shoot. Though if the previews are to be believed it will also still incorporate much of what survival horror encompasses.

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#53 Posted by Video_Game_King (36564 posts) -
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#54 Edited by Yummylee (24646 posts) -

@video_game_king said:

Hasn't that always been a risk of the survival horror genre? It's part of why I think any successful horror game has to ditch the combat entirely to milk the most fear.

I don't think so. I'd say there's room for both; Silent Hill games in particular with or without combat (by ''without combat'' I'm referring to Shattered Memories) are effective for what they attempt. Though sometimes you need that combat, that ability to fight back in small bursts to give yourself a bit of relief or a quick shot of exhilaration while you're running away from a horde of whatever, otherwise it can potentially get to be a bit boring, or maybe even too stressful.

Plus just because a survival horror game isn't scary doesn't mean it's not an especially good survival horror game. Most Resident Evil games of course aren't all that scary, especially when you look back nowadays. The remake I still think has its moments, though, due to its fantastically crafted and incredibly dense atmosphere throughout the whole thing. Really, it's just like how there are plenty of horror movies that, while they're not particularly scary, are still fun and worthwhile experiences nonetheless.

@stonyman65 said:

I've never had a problem with those controls. I totally understand why people would hate them, but I think it actually worked in the game's favor to help add tension and some strategy to the movement. Half the fun of those games was going "oh shit, what's around this corner? What can't I see?" and when you did have to bail out, it was even more "oh shit oh shit oh shit don't screw up!"

Indeedly!

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#55 Posted by Video_Game_King (36564 posts) -

@yummylee:

I'm still not a particularly big fan of combat in survival horror games. Fear requires vulnerability, so giving yourself the tools to deny that vulnerability does a lot to fuck up the feeling of fear (in that now you can fight against the thing that's threatening you). I remember in some interview for Mark of the Ninja, one of the developers commented that they were against combat features in that game because players would always use it to get through the challenges, even if that made the game less fun and efficient. I feel something very similar happens with survival horror games. Makes sense, since survival horror and stealth both stress very similar gameplay aspects (albeit from different perspectives).

I'd also chime in about how I'm not a fan of the term "survival horror", but given that Resident Evil's entering the discussion without being scary, it seems that term still has its use. RE would be a horror themed game, since it evokes horror without scaring; Clock Tower would be survival horror, since it evokes horror to scare. Hmmm......can a survival horror game exist without an overt horror dressing?

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#56 Edited by Yummylee (24646 posts) -

@video_game_king: I Am Alive comes to mind. Hell, most rogue-likes echo a lot of what survival horror games are typically known for as well. As for 'Survival Horror' as a genre name, I'd say it basically covers most games that are designed with the intent to give the player a feeling of vulnerability within a horror theme. Though the degree of vulnerability differs of course, between whether you're micro-managing a limited set of supplies for the sake of combat, or for there to be no combat at all. They should also typically involve a great deal of exploration and puzzle solving, though I suppose that isn't necessary.

That The Evil Within looks to feature a lot of that is maybe why Mikami is so Hell-bent of reiterating on how it's a ''pure'' survival horror game, in that he's trying to emulate survival horror of yesteryear but within more modern gameplay conventions. That, and because it's very likely making for a really good marketing term in this day & age given the lack of what passes for survival horror in big budget games.

It's still somewhat of a strange & nebulous term all the same, but I think classifying it with the basics of ''player vulnerability based around horror setting'' is what would make the most sense.

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#57 Posted by Video_Game_King (36564 posts) -

@yummylee:

I'd still err more toward no combat, because implementing combat requires a lot of control. The player's combat abilities would have to be limited at all times to the point where they would frequently be completely unable to defend themselves. Durability (a la Silent Hill: 0rigins) wouldn't work, given how random and artificial-feeling that can be, so you'd have to limit ammo as much as possible so the player always knows that this one shot could be their last. Perhaps REMake achieves this. I should play that sometime. (That one came up because I also thought that you'd have to be put into situations that force you into combat, or at least make non-combat noticeably more difficult. Tough choices in games and all that.)

It's not so much the meaning that bothers me as it is the name. The hell's survival add to the meaning? It's a lexical vestigial organ.

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#58 Edited by Yummylee (24646 posts) -

@video_game_king: That's why I mentioned how traditional boss battles in these sorts of games tends to clashe with what survival horror is supposed to encompass. Though you don't necessarily have to make your character a gameplay cripple or anything, but should instead make the enemies comparatively strong. That's why zombies and monsters are best for being the common enemies of the game, because they're traditionally known for being able to withstand a lot of punishment. So long as there's more enemies than there is bullets, then I'd say they're on the right track.

I also disagree with degradable weaponry being artificial and random, because usually the alternative to guns is of course melee weapons. But having a melee weapon degradable would of course be the equivalent of giving your handgun only so many bullets. If you're referring to how quickly they tend to break... well, video games and all that. It's something I'm more than willing to suspend my disbelief over for the sake of game design.

And Survival Horror is very likely a translation goof if anything. Only once it picked up speed as a makeshift genre name post-Resident Evil, they figured it might as well stick. When you think about it ''Resident Evil'' doesn't make a whole lot of sense, either!

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#59 Edited by impartialgecko (1941 posts) -

@yummylee: What are your thoughts on Condemned: Criminal Origins? I find that game creepy as all hell yet it's a game where you spend most of your time smacking the living shit out of addicts and homeless people. To me it fell well within the Survival Horror category.

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#60 Edited by Yummylee (24646 posts) -

@adam1808 said:

@yummylee: What are your thoughts on Condemned: Criminal Origins? I find that game creepy as all hell yet it's a game where you spend most of your time smacking the living shit out of addicts and homeless people. To me it fell well within the Survival Horror category.

I haven't played Criminal Origins, but I have played its sequel. And... games like the first Dead Space and Condemned 2 at least do tend to throw a wrench in things, because they definitely feature a typically heavy degree of atmosphere befitting of horror, but at the same time combat plays a pretty significant part. They're definitely horror games, though, in that a core theme is one of horror. Though I guess I wouldn't say I ever really felt all that vulnerable in Condemned 2, and the combat is fun and fulfilling in a way that I always looked forward to getting into more of it.

I probably wouldn't classify 'em as survival horror, because even the original Dead Space is basically RE4 on a space station, complete with common enemies often dropping supplies at your feet. Ammo and general supplies I never felt was much of a concern overall, and Condemned 2's brawling is too emphasised and, in a weird way to put it, fun. It's a little too empowering is maybe a better way to put it. Though like I said I haven't played the first Condemned, but I would assume its sequel didn't rock the boat all too much concerning its design.

I dunno. Video game genres, amiright???

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#61 Posted by crithon (3979 posts) -

hot diggity, got me in the mood to replay RE1.

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#62 Posted by impartialgecko (1941 posts) -

@yummylee said:

@adam1808 said:

@yummylee: What are your thoughts on Condemned: Criminal Origins? I find that game creepy as all hell yet it's a game where you spend most of your time smacking the living shit out of addicts and homeless people. To me it fell well within the Survival Horror category.

I haven't played Criminal Origins, but I have played its sequel. And... games like the first Dead Space and Condemned 2 at least do tend to throw a wrench in things, because they definitely feature a typically heavy degree of atmosphere befitting of horror, but at the same time combat plays a pretty significant part. They're definitely horror games, though, in that a core theme is one of horror. Though I guess I wouldn't say I ever really felt all that vulnerable in Condemned 2, and the combat is fun and fulfilling in a way that I always looked forward to getting into more of it.

I probably wouldn't classify 'em as survival horror, because even the original Dead Space is basically RE4 on a space station, complete with common enemies often dropping supplies at your feet. Ammo and general supplies I never felt was much of a concern overall, and Condemned 2's brawling is too emphasised and, in a weird way to put it, fun. It's a little too empowering is maybe a better way to put it. Though like I said I haven't played the first Condemned, but I would assume its sequel didn't rock the boat all too much concerning its design.

I dunno. Video game genres, amiright???

Basically, it's all action-adventure racing poker to me.

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#63 Edited by egg (1666 posts) -

RE1 sucks but the controls are actually not a problem for me. Had RE been a better game I would probably have been a stern defender of its controls. By comparison I believe in RE4 controls and appreciate it any time a game doesn't use Halo style controls. (except maybe Metroid Prime, since lock-on is very mundane, and it is a game that actually would have benefitted from free look, nay, it probably could never have functioned any other way) Hell I even like PSP shooters, almost as though the fact alone it uses buttons to aim makes it different enough from sticks to be able to appeal to me.

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#64 Posted by Video_Game_King (36564 posts) -

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