Sunday, June 21, 2009

Thoughts on a recent Penny Arcade

Tyco explains Gabe's feelings about Tiger Wood's PGA 10 (I assume) as " if your golf game allows you to shoot thirty under par, it's probably not a simulation of golf. He's not sure what it is, but it's not that."

Gabe himself goes on to say "Immagine if every time you tackled a guy in Madden your players got stronger. Then immagine you could buy footballs that flew further or were easier to catch. Sure some people might like it but most fans would say "this isn't football"."

Both times I read those lines I had a bit of a laugh and thought 'welcome to my view of FPS games'

I think it is funny that often you see reviews of FPS where people launch the criticism of them being unoriginal, and then point out specific game-play angles that are rehashed...or even laud a FPS original, but they never seem to point out to me what is the most glaring cliché angle: Presenting all firearms as Super-Soakers that squirt out lead. It's like we still have movies with the villain all dressed in black tweaking his mustache, and no one ever mentions it.

Of course, only the fans of football would raise a clamor about Gabe/Madden NFL 2012, and here you are being criticized by a fan-base similar in size to the number of people following cricket in the USA.

IMHO one aspect that could improve most games is a wider array of weapons (both firearms and other) to choose from. I think stumbling upon a new gun in a shooter game is akin to getting Fat Epics in WOW, something just a little bit better, different, or new is going to get attention. Think back to playing L4D and the first time you came upon the improved think if they had a 3 tier system instead of a 2 tier system.

I'll add more in the comments later.

1 comment:

andrew said...

Video games seem to revel in the world of SMGs, where you need to spray a bunch of bullets a the baddies, but there really isn't any recoil, the gun climbs up very little on it's own, and the individual shots are pretty weak. Oh, and ranges are damn short.

Of course, the same thing happens in TV and Movies. Jack Bauer or the cast of Lost are constantly running around with handguns when they have access to rifles, or even worse 'dual wielding' Video games seem like they aways want to make handguns a viable option so they balance the weak up-wards and the strong (everything else) down-wards. Movie directors love to use handguns (as do the guys who make movie posters) partly because you can get the actor to hold the gun right next to his face and get some 'dramatic' close-ups.

Clearly, what is needed is a shooter that instead of progressing as handgun-> SMG-> assaultrifle1-> assaultrifle2-> assaultrifle3-> rotarygrenadelaucher-> plasmacannon

is a game that goes through a few different types of handgun, and the top few slots are where you find the H&K MP5 and the FN P-90 (guns that are way high on the 'cool meter' due to TV and movies...heck to go full circle Tycho even uses the P90 as reference )

This way the game-players get to revel in Berettas or Glocks or Colt Pythons or 1911s (45s to you) and the myriad of other handguns you ALWAYS see in movies but rarely see (or if present...rarely use) in video games.

A side-benefit of this whole scheme is it would force FPS designers away from the overused World War 2 battlefield as well as Alphabet-Soup Ninjas vs Terrorists.

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