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Onemind

Are games too long?

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I''ve been thinking about what I would like to see in the gaming industry. One of the things near the top is shorter, cheaper games. Admittedly, some games like Final Fantasy and NWN need 70+ hours of game play to tell the story, but how many times have you played a game where at least 5 hours were just filler. I''d like to see more games that that cost $20 bucks with about 15 hours of gameplay. Right now, only large companies can afford the art/level/programming resources required for a normal game. Instead of huge teams working together on a 50 hour epic, those teams could be broken up, and more games could be made. Making game shorter would let more people get exposer. For example, when the motion picture industry was starting (i.e. black and white films), many of those films would be three hours long - simply because people were used to stage shows (which are still very long). As movies progressed tho, they became shorter. Now a three hour movie is very abnormal. Just throwing out an new idea. Please post your thoughts!

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quote:
Original post by Onemind
Admittedly, some games like Final Fantasy and NWN need 70+ hours of game play to tell the story, but how many times have you played a game where at least 5 hours were just filler.



Here, I disagree, and I''m talking about FFX. (I''ve not played Neverwinter Nights.) It took me between 55 and 60 hours to beat Final Fantasy X. This is far too long for my liking. In my opinion, the length causes it to lack replayability. Then, the ending blatantly sucked anyway, so I''m not sure I''d care to play it again. It took me 55-60 hours to beat a game that sucked in the first place. The story didn''t even need to be that long. It would''ve been better if it had been dwindled down... a lot.

Metal Gear Solid 2 took me twelve hours to beat the first time I played it. I''ve beat the game about four or five times since my first time, each time after taking about nine to ten hours. MGS2 does not lack replayability. AND THE ENDING DIDN''T SUCK! The story wasn''t horribly drawn out, either, even though it was a sequel with a bunch of references to the first game.

What''s truly sad is that I can beat MGS and MGS2 and enjoy it in less time than it takes me to beat FFX, which I didn''t enjoy that well.

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Call of Duty single player was intense but short, 4-5 hours roughly it took, but incredible moments =). Aside from some of the dumb commando missions.

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I disagreee. I found FFX to have a good ending and was disappointed with the ending to MSG2. I have replayed both MSG2 and FFX so maybe I am weird. I tend to prefer games that are longer but a lot of it depends on how they implement it.

If it is longer simply because they add a lot of repetitive stuff then I really hate that, an example of this is Deus Ex. The whole game was pretty much someone telling you to go someplace and retrieve something because they suck too much to do it themselves. By the end of the game I just wanted to hurry up and get it finished only to find all three endings to be extremely lacking. If it is long because it has an involving story then I probably wont mind too much (FFX, Chrono Cross).

Most of the time though I am disappointed to get a game and find out it is really short, like Red Faction or Maximo (I beat Maximo in a weekend). I feel like I wasted my money which is why I tend to buy my games used.

"Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day, drown a man in the water and the fish will eat for a week!

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Mark of Kri only takes about an hour on average per level. The first one is about 20 minutes, but the last few are a bit longer. Lots of fun, lots of replayability, and a story that, while simple, doesn''t fail to amuse me. I also like that they tell the story during "load" times. Nothing worse then five minutes of story followed by another minute of loading. FFX has way too much "down time". I tend to go to other things while my characters are advancing the story.

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if the price matched the game play time, then sure, but atm we are seeing short games (Unreal 2 for example) at long game prices.
To use your film industry thing, I pay for a film it costs me £5 and last about 90mins, however something like Les Mis, a proper long show, last a lot longer and costs upwards of £50 a go iirc

The problem is however, even short games have huge production costs, and they need to gain that money AND make a profit, thus we get short games at long game prices.

I wouldnt mind seeing short and cheap games, dont get me wrong, i''m just doubtfull that it will happen because of the price/cost problems..

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As you say, game developers rely too much on ''fillers'' to boost gameplay time. I think that, not only they should focus on quality versus quantity, but difficulty should be increased, too. I hate the feeling of beating a 15/20 hours long game with no real challenge to it. It''s just shallow...

This may sound a little extreme but, back on the 8 bit era, games were hard; in fact, they used to be INSANELY hard! But gameplay was ok, so you did keep coming back for more. Even now, more than 15 years after, I haven''t been through many of those games, and I still plug in my MSX every now and then to give them a try, ''cause I actually enjoy the challenge.

So, I''m not talking about stepping back to the sometimes frustrating difficulty of ''Abu Simbel Profanation'' and the likes, but I do believe that games nowadays are waaay too easy; thus, games supposed to last for some 8-10 hours are beaten in just 8-10 hours. I say, let''s turn this 8-10 hours into 12-15 hours of actual game play through an increase on difficulty! I want to enjoy each and every one of my playing time hours, squeeze the most fun out of them, not spend my time admiring the landscapes or defeating wave after wave of sterile foes. No rush == no fun == no bang for my buck.





"Senri no michi mo ippo kara (A journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step...)"

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quote:

originally posted by JoriathLionfort
This may sound a little extreme but, back on the 8 bit era, games were hard; in fact, they used to be INSANELY hard! But gameplay was ok, so you did keep coming back for more. Even now, more than 15 years after, I haven't been through many of those games, and I still plug in my MSX every now and then to give them a try, 'cause I actually enjoy the challenge.



Yes, games have gotten easier, but I think thats mainly due to the amount of time it takes to play a modern game. I could beat Mario III in a few hours, of couse I've probably played Mario III more than just about any other game ever made. Why? Its got some many secrets. Games are so long now that nobody wants to replay them and find all the extra stuff. As many of you pointed out, game cost in the millions of dollars, and selling a game for $20 is pretty well unheard of anymore.

I think part of the problem with the gaming industry is the lack of middle ground. Right now a developer has two options.

1) Spend millions on a triple A title that will be sold in retail stores
2) Create a shareware game and try to put it on as many Game Paks as possible

Option 1 is pretty well out of the question for any indie dev, so that leave option 2. When was the last time you anxiously awaited a sequal to a shareware game? We need some sort of middle ground! To clarify middle ground - TV is the middle ground between Sundance Films, and Big Stuido films. Very few TV actors/directors become as wealthy as their movie counterparts, but they still manged a good living. We need some way for talented individuals to get thier product to the masses without spending millions in the process.

Ok, rants over...

[edited by - Onemind on February 8, 2004 12:31:08 AM]

[edited by - Onemind on February 8, 2004 12:32:51 AM]

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In my opinion yes. There are a lot of games that are fine for 5-10 hours, but after that just start boring me. I would rather play a short (5-10 hour) high quality game that cost me $20-$30 then a 100 hour game with tons of filler that costs $50-$60. Most hardcore gamers would probably disagree with me though.

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