State of the Gaming Address; Games Used to be So Epic
By Kei Beneza (dividelife), OnRPG Journalist
I remember a time when video games didn’t receive such harsh criticisms. Back then, the term “good game” was more of a personal opinion rather than a big “8.0” you see at game review sites. If you think about it, picking a game used to be so simple; gamers would just get titles that had great box art. No, gamers didn’t need to see the fat “9” to know that Power Rangers: The Movie, for the Super Nintendo was an awesome game. In the good old days, games weren’t treated like movies. There were no rants regarding grinding, no fanboy raging on bad graphics, and definitely no complaints regarding repetition. There was always something positive about each game and there’s nothing wrong with grabbing the low-selling titles on the shelf. So what happened to the good old days? What stops gamers from grabbing the last copy of Clive Barker’s Jericho from Gamestop? Let’s find out…
Games Aren’t Getting Any Cheaper
I’m not sure if it’s the economic crisis speaking, but games aren’t exactly getting cheaper. Now days we have games that actually charge people to play, even after they buy the box! . This could be associated with pay to play MMOs like World of Warcraft and Warhammer Online. Fourteen bucks per month? That’s like a new game every 3 months. Some games also charge people for downloadable content such as extra missions (seriously… MISSIONS!) and extra armor (we seriously have to pay to wear this?). I suppose getting a game isn’t so easy now that people need to pay more to unlock extra items.
“Why play -censored- when -censored- has more players? I’m still gonna pay whether I like it or not, so why do I have to test other games when this one’s been proven good?”
Typical, yet we can’t blame people for thinking this way as playing three games at the same time only takes your credit card bill up bythree notches.
The Online Era
I suppose picking a game used to be easy; you would only be playing with people who were close to you. Unless you’re an arcade player, the only Ken your Ryu will be facing would either be your brother or your friend. Since some games (or consoles) require you to pay for online content (let alone the ability to play online), you must always get the game that’s sure to satisfy your subscription fee. No use using Xbox live if you’re gonna play Guilty Gear Overture right? Believe it or not, it is majority rule that keeps us from playing the games we like. Such antics like stereotypical scoring revolve around this, hence the picky purchasing.
Scoring and Reviews
Not really saying that reviews are dumb (yeah, saved myself there), but people should always keep in mind that these reviews are written by a single gamer, meaning everything stated is only one opinion out of many. In my opinion, no gaming experience or job credentials can completely justify how good a game is. Unless the game has glitches or obstructions that hinder the gamer from finishing the game COMPLETELY (*cough Tomb Raider fail), we should always respect the idea that some games were made for specific people. I mean, you don’t expect an RPG hater to give Chrono Trigger a perfect 10 right?
Games (or at least some of them) that fail to meet the system’s capabilities are no longer welcome in today’s era. If I must explain, I think Megaman 9 only pushed through because of its lineage. You don’t expect most people to buy games that have NES graphics right? Especially if they’re running on an uber pimped up PC. Believe it or not, games (or ideas for games) are continuously being slaughtered by our rapid upgrades. Some games are meant to look a certain way, though it’s kinda sad that they won’t see the light nor be able to capture the gamers’ hearts.
Gamer 1: People Who Got Sick Of Similarities
I’m not sure if it’s the “in-thing” today, but I’ve seen tons of stereotypes plaguing review sites and forums regarding the different genres of gaming. We’ve reached a certain point where games are having a hard time evolving, possibly due to the rapid upgrades stated earlier. Now, games that share the same elements with different games are being picked on.
“Hah! Grinding again? It doesn’t offer anything new… so dump it!”
Each game gives a unique experience. We didn’t really compare Metal Slug to Contra now did we? Regardless of their similarities, each of them takes players into their own respective virtual world. Now instead of saying “OMGSAUCE DIS EES TOTALIE COPEYIING WORLD OF WARCRAFT!”, go play it and see how well it stands on its own.
Gamer 2: People Who Look For Similarities
In opposition to the one mentioned above, some prefer seeing games that are similar to their personal favorites, hence the Final Fantasy fanboys who won’t stop judging American RPGs. The first one was already annoying, but this one’s worse (fanboys, I mean). On a side note, the discreet version of this type of gamer is okay, especially since they respect the fact that some games were created for specific gamers. In the MMO perspective, we see tons of games that copy the very essence of a certain game, incorporating it into their project as though it was original. Though rated abysmally for its mirror-play, some gamers actually like it because of the similarities. It’s not a bad thing… More like personal preferences.
Games Are Not Movies
As far as I’m concerned, games should not be treated like movies, nor should they be bashed and killed like the whole nation depends on it. I sure do miss those days, when gamers focused more on the pros rather than the never ending cons. Let’s take Jean Claude Van Damme’s Street fighter movie for example. You know it sucks big time, and hell it was funny seeing Sagat in a tux, but who knows? Maybe the kids liked it. Games are games. They are played, not criticized. Not your cup of tea? Then it’s simply just NOT THE GAME FOR YOU.