So the other day I was chattin' with some guys over Skype. One of 'em's livestreaming Skyrim and it gets to this part where he's lookin' over some items; this is early on in the game, so they're all leather and useless and junk. So I say, "Man, this shit pisses me off." And of course, this vague statement gets a rise out of 'em, so I elaborate that I'm talkin' about all the throw away items in your standard RPG.
I'm not into the whole deal of obtaining better and better loot and leveling up your character; I prefer a game designed around me developing my own skills, not a character's. Hand in hand, ya got this system of giving the player weaker equipment at the beginning of the game and the loot keeps getting better. But, like, this sucks 'cause yer just gonna end up with a bunch of junk over time; the stuff's literally designed to be thrown away. It ends up all unbalanced, you're gonna end up with a certain set of equipment in the end, and all the other items just get left in the dust. It all just ends up boiling down to the raw numbers 'cause the system is just flawed at its core by setting a concrete numerical value to a player's skill.
See, I like a game where the items all have their uses and remain useful over the course of the game. There could still be a lot of 'em, but having all that and keeping it balanced? It'd be a heck of a game, that's for sure. And a player should grow with the game as well, not just sit back and watch the character do all the development. Like, the leveling system made sense back in the days of tabletop RPGs, 'cause you've got a system based around telling the story of an adventure, and ya gotta find some way to set consistent values to all this fighting that's going on, otherwise thing's 'd just devolve inta chaos and get kinda boring. 'Cause what's the fun when you're just godmode blastin' through shit just by flappin' your gums?
But vidjagames are a far more interactive medium, y'know? You can grow with the character. Sure, your impact on what happens is still represented by numbers off somewhere in the data, but the ability you have for manipulating these numbers changes over time (hopefully for the better; if the game is designed well it should come naturally).
"Yeah, well... That's just, like, uh, your opinion, man."
So these couple of guys I'm talkin' to are just like, "Whatever, dude." See, they're down with all that junk that's grindin' my gears. They're more content to just sit back and let things paint by the numbers. "What's so bad with that?"
"Man, I didn't say it was bad, I just said it pisses me off."
"So we have to share your opinion?"
"I didn't say that shit either! I mean, feel free to join me, but I ain't gonna pull yer leg."
"So what are you complaining about?"
"I'm just fuckin' tired of seeing it!"
See, the issue weren't that we gotta abolish the RPG standard. Now, I don't think I'd bat an eyelash; it's a boring system of menu flicking and I've only really valued RPGs for the story, something that could only be improved in my eyes by being part of a game with a more engaging form of play. But hey, if other people like it, I see no reason they shouldn’t get to have their fun.
But I don’t exactly feel like I’m getting my fun either. It feels like you either gotta like Shooters or RPGs now, or you’re just S.O.L. And amongst RPGs, they always seem to fall into the same traps of bloated inventories and bestiaries where the only difference between things is their numerical value.
So the guys I’m talkin’ to are kinda into game design themselves and they’s just lookin’ at me like I’m some kinda alien. They believe that hardly anyone thinks the way I do and the stuff I like is just niche and wouldn’t make any money. They said that when making games you should target the largest audience possible.
But see, I don’t think action is as niche as they say it is. Even if it was, it’d be pretty foolish to only make games in the popular genre ‘cause then it’d get flooded with competition and you’re not gonna make any money unless you’re just the best there is.
So, y’know, not us.
So am I right? Wrong? Right about some things and wrong about others? Am I really so underrepresented? Is action a dying breed or are there a buttload of games that I’m just unaware of? Is it futile to appeal to a niche audience? Is it futile to make games for a saturated audience? Is it futile to continue living? Is American actually a decent type of cheese?
I don’t know.
AnastasMember Since 30 Sep 2012
Offline Last Active Mar 06 2014 03:32 PM
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