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PhilipMichaelNorris

What Would YOU Like To See In Today's Games?

16 posts in this topic

Hi all, another question for the devs out there...

What would [i]you [/i]like to see in games as far as mechanics, plot devices, art styles, etc. that either do not exist (to the best of your knowledge) or have been largely overlooked/overshadowed in the past? I was going to be selfish in this post and ask specifically for your thoughts regarding RPGs & FPS genres, but I figured the question would benefit if open to [i][b]all [/b][/i]ideas.

Also, feel free to share any stereotypes and cliches, etc that you are sick of, and yet remain persistent in today's games.
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You don't see enough turnips in games these days. Zombie turnips. From Mars. Yes, that'd be cool. And it should have one of those physics engine things. But not a physics puzzle game, make it more like a rescue the princess RPG.

Now that I have that out of my system... although I go looking for a game that's a strategy, or block puzzle, or time management game, RPG, physics puzzle, or whatever sort of game I'm in the mood for, I can't say that I'd like to see any particular mechanic in a new game. It isn't any one mechanic, game element, or artistic element that makes a game fun. There have been games that have hooked me despite having horribly bad elements. There have been games that were very well polished that I can't stand to play for more than 30 seconds and that's if it can get my attention at all.

I can tell you though that I've played a fair number of physics puzzle games lately and, in general, I'm a little tired of them (for now). Most games I've played lately have been flash games. I'm a little surprised that there aren't more games that are more "pick-up / set-down". Quite a few flash games seem to be designed for play sessions that are > 15 minutes. That is, it's not unusual for a level to take longer than that to complete.

I am especially tired of annoying tutorials. Although I don't know the solution for that, there's a balance between helpful guidance and restrictive hand holding that should be sought after.

And it should be needless to say but do your best to make sure that players don't fall into some sort of balance trap. The sort of thing where players get stuck because they didn't level up their characters or units or whatever in a certain way. That's happened in two flash games that I've played recently.

Also, I do enjoy games that are meant to be played much longer like RPGs, but it'd be tough for me to nail down what draws me to a particular game. I'm torn when it comes to the hand-holding in the RPGs that I've played the past couple years. On the one hand, looking for one specific square foot in a vast game world based off the vague description of an NPC, isn't something that I want to be focused on for too long. However, there needs to be something to mitigate the feeling of following a predetermined script.

I have written a number of short reviews of flash games in my blog / journal. It may or may not be of help determining what elements you would want to include in your own game. After all, it's only one opinion.
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Better developed original storylines and major unexpected plot twists. I love a game that keeps me guessing only to find out the truth and have my mind blown.
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Constant storytelling. Don't make me kill dudes for an hour in a random cool place and afterwards vaguely tie it to the story. In both starcraft and freespace 2 the story was told between the missions and [b]during[/b] the missions. I hate the feeling that level designers made the level first and afterwards it was made to fit into the story.
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Better evaluation and integration of user-created content, and better tools for creating said content.

I'm basically thinking of Halo Reach, where the Forge system lets people create their own multiplayer maps, so there are literally thousands out there waiting.Of course, most of them are really bad but just going by sheer volume (you have to assume that some of them are actually good), tons of actually decent content is being left to die.
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Personally, and not saying what I have to say is "right in every way", but I'd like to see, gee I dunno, more gameplay?

I mean, yeah, created content is cool. It opens up a whole new way of user-interaction and creativity.

Non-linearity is a great concept too. Being able to play a game from any direction is a nice idea to have and lets us move on almost at our own pace.

Story telling is also a fun way to decorate a game. It's like having your regular glazed donuts and then filling them with lots of delicious jelly. But for me, it becomes a pain when the only way to find out what happens next is to "solve this puzzle" or "talk to this guy" or "go back where you came from". I feel like it's a constant struggle to progress when it's so much easier to pick up a kids book where I can just turn the page with relative ease! And they have pictures! Don't get me wrong though, I do love a well-executed story telling. BioShock for example. Oh, just thinking about it makes me want to play it right now. HOWEVER, the same draw-back applies. If I want to replay the game, I also have to replay those cut-scenes and all the dialogue. Sometimes I just want to fill someone's face full of lead and beat them with a wrench. Why can't I do that without Andrew Ryan whining why he's so right and I'm so about to be dead? Good for you, Ryan. Good for you,

I can't say much about RPGs. I've had a few good ones in my time, but I can't always sit down and watch numbers rise and fall. Most of the time, I want to collect little dots, chase blue ghosts around, and eat fruit. Is that too much for a simple Pacman to ask these days? I like games where I can pick up the controller or double-click on an icon and play. And when I want to stop, I stop! While I'm on topic, let me tell you why KOTOR (Starwars: Knights of the Old Republic) did so well in this area. It's an RPG that I could pick up and play anytime. It's "save anywhere on the go" feature made life so nice. Get this, you could even save during battles! I didn't have to worry about killing that 20-foot tentacle monster before I find out what happened to Ryu-kan's lost pet Uncle or Chibitsu's dead parents like most RPG games these days. In KOTOR, I started the game, ran circles around some innocent NPCs, fought battles, learned character points (they also made back-stories optional!), and I saved and quit when my Spaghettio's were about done. No hassle.

Puzzle games are good. I like puzzle games. GOOD puzzle games that is. If I can sit down and understand the mechanics in about 10 to 15 minutes of clicking random buttons on the flashy screen, I figure it's a good game. Especially if there's some form of motivation. Remember Solitaire? Everyone gets a kick out of cards flying amok all over that green screen. Puzzle games need that too. Take Angry Birds for instance. You're flinging mad and infuriated fat birds. That knock things over. And getting coins. etc. Basically, if it's easy to understand, entertaining to play, but at least has many challenging levels, it's a good puzzle games.
A bad puzzle game is quite the opposite. I don't want to read your 12 page PDF you made your intern do for your company that states the three articles on how to play your puzzle game. I don't care how intelligent your target audience is, Einstein wouldn't have played it either. He was too busy inventing things and expanding science. Your Extreme Mahjong would not hold his attention for more than 3 seconds or however long it is relative to him.

So what do I want? Gameplay.
If it's an RPG, let me enjoy leveling up and killing baddies so I can find out what ever happened to Ryu-kan's lost pet Uncle. Don't make me struggle to enjoy it. I don't have the time.
If it's an FPS, you're an FPS. You're supposed to shoot things. Give me something good to shoot at and don't make me wish I was at an arcade dishing out my 25 cents to play Deer Hunter. Damn aiming.
If it's a puzzle game, give me something I can wrap my head around. Naturally these things become complicated over time so start somewhere simple. If you do it right, soon I'll be thinking with Portals.

Don't let flashy graphics or cheesy story plot be the center of the focus. If I wanted a movie, I'd go to a cinema. If I wanted to read a book, I'd steal How The Grinch Stole Christmas from my neighbor's stockings on Christmas. If you do have a new graphics shader or fancy shmancy storyline, allow the game to tell it too. I don't want Christopher Walken have to stop the game every 10 minutes and struggle to explain everything.

Gameplay.
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I think multiple choice dialogs are pretty bad and slow down the playing experience. Usually you first have to read the choices, than listen to the character say it, then listen to the answer etc. This is not how talking works in the real world. I'd like if my answers were based on my character and my playing style and automated for the most part. The game shouldn't interrupt for conversations. You should be able to walk away while the NPC is talking and the NPC should follow you or say "ok you don't want to listen, gfy".
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I would like to see persistent worlds outside of MMOs. Something like the way chromehounds did it, where individual matches are small, but they have an impact on a larger game world. You essentially had a world map that you could slowly take over by taking part in matches occurring on the front line. Winning like 1000 matches would win your army the territory.

It made it feel like your performance had a larger impact on the overall game world.

I'd also like another MMOFPS like planetside. That game was fun

edit: basically a persistent world more focused on world progression than character progression I guess would be what I want.
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WWIIOL has that- ranks only limit what classes you can get (and even then there's few to go around). The whole point is to fight for your country, not the gloryz. Too bad it's terrible. My opinion.
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Something different.

If it's an RPG, don't feature 10-year olds beating the crap out of gargantuan dragons with their white/black/red magic shit. Don't insert guns as ancient forbidden technology into a story that begins with sword and arrows and magic. I swear, all these RPGs out there feature the same shit over and over again. No, I don't want to see "Heal" ability in my [i]White[/i] mage skills. Why does Heal always have to be "White" magic? Why is there "Heal" at all? And fuck Paladins.

If it's a FPS, don't feature handguns and shotguns as your first weapons and rocket launcher and lazer-pew-pew as your later weapons. Fuck, why don't you just give a rocket launcher at the beginning of the game just so you can blow shit up for a while and give laser in the next mission to make holes with? I don't give a fuck about FPS stories, so you can be creative there or stick to the old blowing-up-aliens storyline is fine with me. Just be creative with the weapons. And I don't want to see moving platforms and be jumping on them on FPS. I can't see where my feet land, and I hate to guess.
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Non-linearity is a big one, especially for open world games. I would like to see games that have more dynamic experiences and less scripted experiences. Like in open world games, instead of having the same three people asking for help, it would be really cool if that happened because of the decisions of multiple AIs interacting together. It would be really immersive. I don't know how far off we are from that sort of experience though. We can all hope I suppose
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1) Libertarian design. I don't want to work for a king, dictator or save some da princess. Let me choose my mission...Or even warp a mission to my own ends. Like allow me to save a princess and then ransom her myself.
2) No more menus for doing simple things like climbing a ladder, choosing a spell, etc.
3) Less eye candy in favor of more players or a smarter AI.
4) Have an AI that cheats the better a person does, especially in a team game. Make it a rare thing to make it to the end of a level.
5) Score rewards for carrying horrible players through a level. Make it to where people want to play with them and not ban them outright.
6) More hack banning.
7) No more medieval/quasi-medieval/feudal japan themes. No wizards, dragons, etc.
8) No more politically correct characters. More racism, sexism, racist sexism, you name it. Make people feel uncomfortable for playing as their character. And then have a censored mode for laughs.
9) [url="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h8a5zUPx3Bs"]More Dick Cheney.[/url] [url="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7FuI6_SOeLs&feature=related"]The guy is gold.[/url] [url="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MPsqL81Etxg&feature=related"]You can't go wrong with him as a character.[/url]
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Such a broad question, I'm not sure if it can be answered usefully. I mean, I'd like an interactive romance novel RPadventuresim with male courtable characters and either arcade or ccg or maybe tactical combat. I can't imagine there's a ton of other people just wishing for a game like that though. :P I'm quite tired of epic fantasy and any kind of dark setting, but there are plenty of people out there who do want that. FPSes I just don't want at all because they give me motion sickness. Again that applies to less than 20% of gamers. (Though now I'm vaguely curious whether there are any notable humorous and/or romantic FPSes.)
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[quote name='froop' timestamp='1312558880' post='4845058']
I think multiple choice dialogs are pretty bad and slow down the playing experience. Usually you first have to read the choices, than listen to the character say it, then listen to the answer etc. This is not how talking works in the real world. I'd like if my answers were based on my character and my playing style and automated for the most part. The game shouldn't interrupt for conversations. You should be able to walk away while the NPC is talking and the NPC should follow you or say "ok you don't want to listen, gfy".
[/quote]

your last statement... lol, i like your style.
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Content and lots of it! So much I could never play it all. Also needs to be quality content. Not just walls of text or infinitely repetitive quests.
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