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Games are not good anymore? Too many publishers publish mediocre crap.


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The 90s was my favourite era for many reasons: 2D genres perfected on the 16-bit platforms, the breakneck pace of technological change, the explosion of creative possibilities from the jump to 3D, 3D game design conventions not yet settled and fewer games built on the same engines so much more diversity in the feel of the games, technical limitations of the hardware leading developers to largely eschew realism in favour of more abstract art styles, PC and handheld gaming coming of age, Pokemon becoming a pop cultural phenomenon.

 

Let's not kid ourselves though, there were a huge amount of mediocre games! Far more than today I'd wager. The Game Boy and PS1 in particular were full of them. It doesn't detract from that era though as there were so many classics and no-one remembers the mediocre games or plays them any more. 

 

Today's gaming is the same: there are still mediocre games but there are still classics. It's not quite as exciting for me (as it's the inverse of many of those aspects I listed about the 90s), but there are still more than enough interesting games to keep me playing - too many in fact given I'm still trying to catch up on stuff from previous gens alongside playing some new stuff.

 

OP - play The Return of the Obra Dinn if you haven't already. Best game of recent years.

 

 

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2 hours ago, Dudley said:

Your post is well timed with mine, only 2 of those got any particular exposure on release with a 3rd one getting so now it's been picked up for release on Switch and Game Pass.

It's one of the benefits of curated services like gamepass and epic's free game thing. Stuff has a chance to find an audience it might not otherwise.

 

Most of the storefronts are terrible for making things easy to discover - if your game hasn't had a marketing spend it has a couple of days to attract people on the new release page of the consoles (and less on steam). One of them needs to come up with gaming's equivalent of Spotify's recommendations algorithm because the half baked efforts they have just now don't cut it. 

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On 14/04/2021 at 20:13, R0b said:

I too miss the days of crap PS2-era movie tie ins; 3D and online not being a meaningful option; less diversity of developers; game remakes/rereleases/conversions existing since the GBC; and a vast barrier of publishers meaning indie offerings were, compared to today, zero. 

Yes of course, that's exactly what I was saying. 

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Watch dogs 2 received favorable reviews. 7.5-8/10 from most outlets which is a joke. Splinter Cell 2002 did a better job than Watch Dogs in terms of letting you play the smart tech guy. Assassins Creed Valhalla mostly 8/10 and 4/5. A bland piece of garbage devoid of imagination and creativity. The perfect example of lazy cut and paste game design. The game is an exact copy of the previous titles with a few adjustments, in the same way all Ubisoft games are lazy copies of previous titles. 

 

People dont complete games anymore. Its been a reoccurring them on this forum. No, no its not because you dont have the time for it. Its because you wont make time for it because deep inside you dont like the game you are forcing you to play.  

 

 

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I like the environments in Assasins Creed games. I think they're genuinely breathtaking.

 

The gameplay isn't up to much, but it gets you from A to B.

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1 hour ago, Stevie said:

Watch dogs 2 received favorable reviews. 7.5-8/10 from most outlets which is a joke. Splinter Cell 2002 did a better job than Watch Dogs in terms of letting you play the smart tech guy. Assassins Creed Valhalla mostly 8/10 and 4/5. A bland piece of garbage devoid of imagination and creativity. The perfect example of lazy cut and paste game design. The game is an exact copy of the previous titles with a few adjustments, in the same way all Ubisoft games are lazy copies of previous titles. 

 

People dont complete games anymore. Its been a reoccurring them on this forum. No, no its not because you dont have the time for it. Its because you wont make time for it because deep inside you dont like the game you are forcing you to play.  

 

 

 

1 hour ago, deerokus said:

Stop playing ubisoft games. 

 

He's subscribed to Ubi+ (not sure why given he seems to hate the typical Ubisoft game).

 

Have you tried Immortals @Stevie?  Its still very much an Ubi open world game, just crossed with Zelda, but its the most charming thing they have put out for years.  Its also quite funny

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Just now, dreamylittledream said:

 

 

He's subscribed to Ubi+ (not sure why given he seems to hate the typical Ubisoft game).

 

Have you tried Immortals @Stevie?  Its still very much an Ubi open world game, just crossed with Zelda, but its the most charming thing they have put out for years.  Its also quite funny

Ah! I knew there had to be somebody with that subscription in the world.

Agreed on Immortals. 

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2 minutes ago, El Spatula said:

You're not allowed to. Apparently.

 

Well there are some ethical considerations recently to be fair.  And even though I love the loop  and the gameplay hooks I'll be the first too admit they are almost a genre in themselves

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27 minutes ago, El Spatula said:

You're not allowed to. Apparently.

You're allowed to! But playing exclusively ubisoft games then bemoaning the entire art form is like saying all TV is shit when you only watch itv. 

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Or indeed complaining that heavy metal is too loud and thus music is shit while refusing to listen to anything other than heavy metal.

 

Quote

Watch dogs 2 received favorable reviews. 7.5-8/10 from most outlets which is a joke. 

 

 

This is interesting though because 30 years ago Amiga Power made this exact argument against magazines that used the dreaded 73% as an average.  That people would buy a game rated that and think "Well the best game ever is less than a quarter better than this and this is shite, therefore games are shite".

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On 14/04/2021 at 15:26, Stevie said:

 

Whenever I talk to people who know nothing about games I always tell them that games is like a combination of books and films. It combines the best of both worlds. Some of my best memories in life are from games, but for the past 8 years or so Iv'e started to lose interest in games simply because I feel that the industry is so streamlined and stagnated. Its all so bland and toothless. It doesn't arouse my curiosity. It doesn't require me to think. 

 

I used to love open world games. I remember when GTAIII came out, it just blew my mind. I remember thinking that if they could make GTAIII several times bigger then it would be the best game ever created. Fast forward 20 years and I never completed GTA5 because it got old...and boring. I rarely complete games, and I often install games (Gamepass/Ubi+) that I immediately uninstall because I think the games are low effort crap.

 

I installed The Division 2 today, played for about 20 minuted before I uninstalled it. I started playing it and not before long I reached a point where I was walking towards chest high walls and I just knew that it would be a firefight. I mean whats the point? There is no tension, there is no suspense, when you see chest high walls you know its there because you are going to hide behind it when firing at the enemy. Games get more and more streamlined, and the quality is dropping. I also installed Watchdogs 2. Played for a few minutes (didn't uninstall) but I got a strong feeling that the freedom/mechanics in the game was just artificial sweetener placed there to make me think I was playing a game that had anything that required me to use my brain. Its all a ruse.

 

Titles like The Last of US gets rated as GOTY/best games ever simply because they tell a story, have a narrative, and catches the player by surprise. All games should have a story and a narrative that makes you think, but we are served games that requires very little thinking or reflection. 

 

I'm about to give up gaming completely. The only games that keeps me interested is grand strategy games, but I might as well be playing table top games. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Take a break and play smaller games.

I felt like that for a while. I think it was Life is Strange that hooked me back into really enjoying games (especially single player games) again.

 

Remember that the games industry has grown tremendously as well. Whilst that means there are big blockbuster games, there are also a ton of smaller creative titles that I'm glad are available.

 

Pick something completely out of left field and see if it clicks, or tackle your backlog. I posted in games I completed in 2020 thread about it, but although I haven't got around to the big PS games  (I have God of War sitting on my shelf and it's never even been in my PS4) I finally got through an old Point & Click PC game in my backlog, and really enjoyed it.

 

 

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On 14/04/2021 at 16:50, Vemsie said:

I think the last Ubi game I bought was the (actually excellent) Rayman Legends.
There's so much good stuff these days, from super cool indie games with unique concepts like Return of the Obra Dinn and Outer Wilds to mechanically rich games like Nioh (2), Sekiro and DOOM Eternal to unique VR experiences like Paper Beast, Astro Bot, Resident Evil 7, Lone Echo and Alyx to gameplay sandboxes like Prey, The Phantom Pain and Hitman 3. Even in AAA you'll get things this year like Returnal, in which you're a middle-aged female astronaut trapped in a cycle on an alien planet that changes upon each death, Deathloop, in which you're stuck in a timeloop on an island where you have to kill multiple targets before everything resets while being hunted by an assassin, and Ghostwire Tokyo, in which you fight Japanese spirits with magic karate. And then there's smaller, but interesting stuff like Sifu, Kena, Jett: The Final Shore, Death's Door etc. It's an embarassment of riches.

Also, grab a friend and play It Takes Two.

Also, man I forgot how cool upcoming games really are - I wish I had more time to play them! 

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7 hours ago, Marlowe said:

OP - play The Return of the Obra Dinn if you haven't already. Best game of recent years.

 

 

Absolutely do this. Its one of the best games ever and genuinely unique. 

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On 15/04/2021 at 00:25, Bojangle said:

Titanfall 2... terrible?

 

Bring back negs immediately. 

 

Depends on which part he's referring to. The single player was excellent, but multiplayer wasn't a patch on the first game which nailed it so fucking hard out of the gate that the only way from there was down. :(

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Gaming is a bit like music at the moment for me. People lament that there's a dearth of good stuff but the truth is you just have to look harder for it. I wouldn't expect Spotify to let me know where the next big thing in cosmic sludgecore is coming from, you have to go trawling through Bandcamp or whatever. If you rely on major outlets to tell you what's big you're going to miss out.

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Although I guess music is different in that it's at least possible for a much smaller artist to make something of the same "Technical quality" as a major one.

 

Not really true with games, which doesn't make them worse games of course but changes the first impression.

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54 minutes ago, moosegrinder said:

Gaming is a bit like music at the moment for me. People lament that there's a dearth of good stuff but the truth is you just have to look harder for it. I wouldn't expect Spotify to let me know where the next big thing in cosmic sludgecore is coming from, you have to go trawling through Bandcamp or whatever. If you rely on major outlets to tell you what's big you're going to miss out.

Is there a site people could visit that has a good focus on Indies and games that try to be different?

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25 minutes ago, moosegrinder said:

Hahahah!


Just laughing at my post it’s really very helpful no? It just comes across as rude. I was offering another perspective that might result in discussion with some who don’t agree with the OP. 

 

For what it’s worth I would clump yourself together with a few other poster’s who’s constant “discerning viewpoint” I find to be quite grating. 

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5 minutes ago, bradigor said:

He was likely laughing at me. And my awful attempt to self promote.

 

Ah! In that case I do apologies to Moosegrinder, if it was actually intended at your post! 

Certainly, in this case quoting would help!

 

I guess I'm a little short with this stuff, as I'm finding some of the rllmuk vibes to be a bit grating and negative, very much of recent.

...really down on games that I often wish I could be playing right now, but most of the time I'm stuck at work during the day.

Opinions are opinions though and I'm not trying to police anything, people are of course entitled. 

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16 hours ago, Stevie said:

Watch dogs 2 received favorable reviews. 7.5-8/10 from most outlets which is a joke. Splinter Cell 2002 did a better job than Watch Dogs in terms of letting you play the smart tech guy. Assassins Creed Valhalla mostly 8/10 and 4/5. A bland piece of garbage devoid of imagination and creativity. The perfect example of lazy cut and paste game design. The game is an exact copy of the previous titles with a few adjustments, in the same way all Ubisoft games are lazy copies of previous titles. 

 

People dont complete games anymore. Its been a reoccurring them on this forum. No, no its not because you dont have the time for it. Its because you wont make time for it because deep inside you dont like the game you are forcing you to play.  


Reviews are shite. I don’t know if it was a perspective thing where I was just aware of some more interesting outlets for a while but they all got shut down, but engaging with reviews now always reminds me of the OPSM and Gamesmaster days. Is it a big budget game from a major publisher? 7/10 minimum, probably 8 or 9. Is it something there’s a lot of hype around which toxic children will abuse you for not liking? 9/10 minimum. 
 

The last place I was still paying attention to reviews from was Easy Allies and they honestly started to feel like they were generating the scripts with an algorithm. The same phrases and the same positives for games that are often the same as the last one in the series. Ludicrous fawning over the latest Ubisoft garbage. I just got to a point where I decided I was wasting my time listening to them as I’ve heard it all before. 
 

Again, smaller places like this with personal opinions that are well articulated are far, far more valuable for discovering games and hearing about their relative merits than organised reviews can ever be. There’s a sense that if you want to keep getting the latest Ubisoft, Sony, activision etc games for review you’d better say nice things about them and honestly I don’t trust people who get all their games for free and need to keep getting them to ensure they get review clicks the same day as everyone else. 

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