Jump to content
rllmuk
therearerules

Things We Take For Granted In Modern Games

Recommended Posts

I played and completed Onimusha yesterday, and whilst it was enjoyable, there were a few things in it which I'd completely forgotten about from previous generations. Things which I'm pretty sure I used to list as things I wanted from new generations, but then forgot what it was like to play without them.

  • Skippable cutscenes. These days you skip cutscenes by accident, and can even pause them. Back then you died against a boss, you better believe you're sitting through that 5 minute cutscene again. And again. And again.
  • A vaguely decent camera. Even in non-prerendered background games where you can't see the enemy directly in front of you because of the artistic camera angle, back before the right thumbsticks cameras in 3D games were uniformly terrible.
  • Auto checkpoints! Even in games considered harsh by modern standards, death usually means a slight inconvenience. As opposed to kicking you back to the title screen and you hoping you saved recently.
  • Some sort of budget put into voice acting. Exhibit A

 

 

  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The homogenised controls and gameplay that make the majority of large budget games feel like yet another reskin of a bunch of games you've played since the ps3/360 era.

For most big budget games nowadays, watching a minute of gameplay footage makes it extremely easy to imagine what the game is going to feel like to play(because it plays like all the other games).

Even in the ps2 era, games that looked similar and were in the same genre could have pretty big differences in control scheme/systems.

  • Upvote 5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sleep/save status modes.

 

Being able to stop playing - even without making it to a checkpoint (which is probably 10mins away) and picking up from where you left on the following day.

 

 

  • Upvote 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Real-time physics? Admittedly there's always room for improvement, but there was a time when having physics simply meant that dead bodies ragdolled a bit - now we have random objects being knocked over in worlds all of the time...

  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Knowing what to do and where to go next. Most games have a map or screen prompts or some sort of instruction on the pause menu.

 

Go back a few generations and you had none of that. I remember spending days wandering round and round Tomb Raider levels not knowing where to go. 

 

Dark Souls/Bloodbourne are an exception to this.

  • Upvote 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
30 minutes ago, smac said:

Automapping.

 

Complete lack of manuals. I'm not convinced this is a good thing.

I miss good old manuals especially for SNES RPG games. Did anyone deface them by actually writing notes in the Notes section?

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Things we take for granted - Their abundance.

 

They're everywhere, PCs, consoles, tablets, phones, Fire TV sticks etc. You can play on the bog, on the bus, in the waiting room, as a passenger in a car/train etc.

 

The amount of readily available games is even more amazing, how many people had a "pile of shame" back in the SNES/MD days? Not many.

 

I can't help but think that having access to so many games at all times spoils the magic a bit, like when PS1 games became easy to copy and blank CDs were pennies, you'd get loads of games and play each one for five minutes. I did the same recently with apple arcade, flicked between titles and never really found anything to get my teeth in to.

 

Anyways, old man mode off. Having lots of games is a good thing, but it requires will power to stick at just a few and really appreciate them.

  • Upvote 5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wireless controllers. If consoles started using wired joypads again two things would be guaranteed:

  • A&E waiting rooms would be packed with people who had toppled and faceplanted their coffee table
  • Practically every machine would be dented to buggery from all the times they had been unceremoniously yanked from the TV stand
  • Upvote 8

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Writing - It was a rarity that a game had a well written script, it's still not quite there yet, but it's waaaay better. It's also not compromised by genre or by "it's well written but it doesn't play great" or "it plays well but the story sucks", we get solid games with good stories these days across genres, and games that aren't' exclusively RPGs.

  • Upvote 4
  • Downvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Global launches: You used to wait a year to see some software releases in Europe , and console launches could be even worse, fortunately gaming is seen as an international market now rather than back in the day where Japan got all the attention and everyone else played second fiddle.

 

Games not being cut down for different markets. I'm thinking here of Sega's baffling "let's cut the online modes out of our online games on our console that we're selling on the marketing of being online because it's cheaper to localise only half a game". The gaming industry collectively went up 10 IQ points when they died.

  • Upvote 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
19 minutes ago, RubberJohnny said:

Global launches: You used to wait a year to see some software releases in Europe , and console launches could be even worse, fortunately gaming is seen as an international market now rather than back in the day where Japan got all the attention and everyone else played second fiddle.

 

This has been reversed to a certain extent, with Japan being a bit of an afterthought these days.

PS4 came out in Japan months after the western launch. XBOX One came out in America/UK in Nov 2013, Japan in Sept 2014.

Lots of indie/smaller western games either come out years later in Japan or sometimes never. The psvr store in Japan vs the west is a joke.

 

Even if you start looking back at N64/Dreamcast/Gamecube/Xbox games, the number of big name games that never got released in Japan is surprising. Stuff like Cruisn for N64 and MSR for Dreamcast never came out in Japan, Burnout 2 was a PS2 exclusive, as was timesplitters 2,  Outrun 2 Coast to Coast, (which most of us think of as a game that was best on xbox), was a PS2 exclusive in Japan. Sonic and All Stars Racing Transformed wasn't released on Vita in Japan. 

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

To be fair, in Japan, there’s no real difference between “PS2 exclusive” and “on the PS2 and Xbox”.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, womblingfree said:

Half-decent voice acting. 

 

It is still terrible in Japanese games. Dragon Quest XI has atrocious English voice acting, particularly if you're from the UK. They've tried to do UK regional dialects with some characters, but using American voice actors, and it is excruciating. One of the characters has a Dorset accent that takes a tour around the whole country every other sentence. 

 

I'm not normally one of those people that insists on original VO, but I can't play Dragon Quest XI without the Japanese voices, unless I play it on mute or turn off the dialogue.

  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
17 hours ago, Nick R said:

had missed the solution when it was published in a magazine,

 

Not having to buy a bunch of magazines each month for reviews, demos, previews and hints & tips (how else did you do the rubber chicken puzzle?). I get most of my buying advice in here, now.

 

Also not convinced that's a good thing, given some of the great games mags that have gone to the wall.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Just now, Isaac said:

 

It is still terrible in Japanese games. Dragon Quest XI has atrocious English voice acting, particularly if you're from the UK. They've tried to do UK regional dialects with some characters, but using American voice actors, and it is excruciating. One of the characters has a Dorset accent that takes a tour around the whole country every other sentence. 

 

That's a shame - Yangus in IX was one of my favourite examples of localization. Guv'nor.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Games that don't have a plot, and don"t lead you by the hand because they want to be movies.

 

You don't see this much outside of the indie game sector, if at all.   

 

Imagine Contra 3 as a new release today. There would be someone in peril that needs rescuing, a cut scene showing the princess  being abducted and so on. You would start the game and instead of running and shooting the game would pause and an info bubble would appear saying "use the d pad to move" and it wouldn't let you play until you did. Then you would run for 3 seconds until it paused again to explain that the shoot button, you know, shoots things.  No-one lets you just start, and find out what happens when you press the buttons by pressing the fucking buttons.  The story to Contra is "shoot everything" and as soon as you start to play you know exactly what to do. And when you complete it (1993 spoiler alert) you fly out on a helicopter whilst everything blows up. There was no point or purpose or story, and it didn't need one. 

 

I can imagine a Crazy Taxi remake where you have to adjust the gear ratios, refuel, stick to the speed limits and transport photoreal Kardashians to photoshoots.  Gaming strives to be epic in scale and it's crept up on us over time to the point there aren't enough hours in the day to play them all properly. I miss arcade action.

  • Upvote 3
  • Downvote 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

From the points in the OP i was reminded of a recent replay of Conker's Bad Fur Day, which was groundbreaking in its day for the top platforming fun, the speech and cinematics, the humour and so on.  Play it today and you can see how much the industry has changed.  The platforming is horrible, cut scenes last ages and can't be skipped, the writing is dreadful and the voice acting is obviously a bunch of programmers who think they are funny. I can't think of another game that demonstrates how much production values in games have changed.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Everything seems to have a levelling up system or crafting system these days, fucking everything.  It’s why I love indie games so much, and Nintendo. 

  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Cappuccino Kid said:

Loading. Not quick loading, just reliable loading full-stop, rather than:

 

- Put in the tape

- Adjust the volume wheel to the level that (you think) worked for this game previously. Extra points if your volume wheel has special marks tippexed on based on previous success.

- Type 'Load""'.

- Wait 10 minutes.

- Loading fails 9 minutes 50 seconds in. 

- Analyse why loading failed. Was it the volume? Was it because you typed 'Load""' rather than 'Load "nameofgame"'? Was it because you turned away from the tv for a couple of minutes?

- Repeat 2-5 times.

- When game eventually loads, play it for 2 minutes, remember you don't like it, and start process again with a new game.

I used to sit perfectly still like some stick insect so as not to cause disruptive floor vibrations around where my computer was set up on the floor. 

 

Plus I never knew what the weird metal antenna/wire was that hung out from my C64 tape deck. 

  • Empathy 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue. Use of this website is subject to our Privacy Policy, Terms of Use, and Guidelines.