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SA-Magic

Why have publishers made 2D extinct?

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Grr! Why have publishers made 2D extinct? Don''t give me crap about publishers saying they''ll be able to publish 3D games. That factor has delayed Simon the Sorceror 3 (now STS 3D) The best technology will sell...though I suppose that answers my own question- they just want to make the most money? Design is only existing primarily in great developers like Ion Storm and a few others. Pfft! There are plenty of fans that would play 2D adventure games that retain the same atmosphere and ''feel'' their favourites did. Fan-made games like IndyProject (http://www.indyproject.de) are fairly popular. These games would sell to a degree, I''m sure.

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How many people still buy vinyl records? Audiophiles and DJs only. The common consumer buys CDs and (increasingly rarely) cassettes. How may people still buy Betamax tapes? Well, that''s easy - there are none to buy!

Okay, a more pertinent example: how many people buy Windows 3.x software? What? I can''t hear you; speak up! That''s right, none (except for some obscure corporate clients). And why is that?

It''s called evolution and commerce. There''s a huge novelty factor in the latest technology, but it also allows us to do things we previously couldn''t (compare DVD and VHS). In a few years, audio cassettes and VHS tapes will have gone the way of the 8-track - and DVDs and CDs after them.

Isn''t it therefore logical that if your consumer base demands a particular type of product that you, since your objective is to make a profit, would supply? 3D is in high demand now, and even developers prefer it because of the increased flexibility for effects and implementation (many "2D" games are actually written in 3D, employing those principles to make a better simulation). In fact, it seems that it''s always people who haven''t yet themselves learnt 3D programming who argue in favor of 2D the most.

I will grant you this concession: 2D gameplay still lives. Many games are 3D (or even employ a "2D" presentation) but have 2D gameplay. The majority of RTSes and RPGs instantly spring to mind. But would you rather have an RTS in which you can use the terrain topology to your advantage (because of the underlying 3D mechanics) or a flat-ground simulation where the only cover might be hiding behind a boulder?

The choice is yours.

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I strongly dislike 3D games. But luckily there are others like me still around, so there is still a market for 2D games. If they should ever be gone, I will simply make no games anymore. Simply as that.

But maybe we have a "real virtual experience" at that time. Where you can really smell, touch and feel things. That would be real cool then and definately better than 2D. On the other hand people will still play chess then, so 2D might never die.

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Oluseyi, I agree it's evolution- but it's still terrible they're forcing us away from classics. 2D games were really fun, it just seems stupid that publishers will NOT take on a 2D adventure game, in the case of Simon the Sorceror, simply because of the style.

Edited by - SA-Magic on January 15, 2002 4:09:19 PM

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Yeah it sucks that publishers don''t make any more "2D" games whether they''re fake 2D or real 2D. I miss a lot of the 2D games of the past personally, and while there are some good 3D games made these days, most of them suck in my opinion. There was a time when a lot more good games came out, during the 2D era. Now it seems all the money in the budget goes to special effects and gameplay is left out in the cold.

Personally I''m making a 2D game using OpenGL (orthographic mode) because it allows me to do accelerated rotation (and scaling) and alpha blending. I didn''t however, spend a lot of time on the graphics engine. In fact the graphics engine is a very small part of my game. I don''t understand why people think that if they have a graphics engine they have a game, this is so not true. And everyone seems to be working on a 3D engine these days.. As if a 3D engine means you have a game. Anyway, sorry for getting off the topic but I had to get that out.

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Guest Anonymous Poster
quote:
Original post by Torn Space
Many of the latest games are still 2D.

Civ 3, the Sims, SimGolf, Disciples II

All 2D.


The players in the sims are 3D.

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It is completely wrong to assume that because companies make 3D games it must be the case that this is what people want. A lot of people are in fact very attracted to good quality playable 2D games. Cossacks was a major hit last year and currently is my fave game, with an add on and a sequel currently in the works. People voted with their feet on that one and it sold bucketloads. The problem with publishers is that they are all a bunch of in secure fools in suits who dont actually play enough games to know gameplay from a hole in the head, but they DO see the difference between 2D and 3D. 3D card maufacturers and people selling graphics engines tell them 3D is better and they believe it. If it was up to marketing men, chess would be converted to a 3D game (funny how the multilevel chess from star trek never caught on dont you think...)
The problem with developers is they simply do not have the cash to make a game that might not get picked up by a publisher, so they churn out ''Generic 3D shooter IV'' in an effort to get signed. Developers that buck the trend with games like The Sims, Cossacks or Rollercoaster Tycoons often make huge profits, but strangely nobody seems to notice.
3D does NOT even always make a game look better, in fact it can make it worse. Empire earth is a good 3D RTS, but its graphics arent as nice as the hand drawn sprites of Age of Empires II.
There are a lot of companies that think they can make games because they understand 3D math and how to push polys around. This isnt true now and never will be. Companies like Ensemble and Maxis have learned how to make good games first, and worried about how to represent them later which is how it should be.
There are some games (esp strategy ones) that will probably never be true 3d, however easy it gets to code. We are land-bound animals who plan strategy in 2D. if we were birds we might have different strategys... but i digress.

There will always be demand for 2D games. If its filled by hobby coders doing indie games then all the better.


http://www.positech.co.uk

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quote:
Original post by Supernova
There was a time when a lot more good games came out, during the 2D era. Now it seems all the money in the budget goes to special effects and gameplay is left out in the cold.

There was a time when a lot more good movies came out, during the 30s-60s era. Now it seems all the money in the budget goes to special effects (and nudity - Halle Berry was reportedly paid $1 Million specifically to bare her breasts in Swordfish, which bombed anyway) and story/drama/adventure/real entertainment is left out in the cold.

There was a time when a lot more good music came out, during the instrumental era. Now it seems all the money in the budget goes to making the artists/bands/videos more visually attractive/sensual (ie, special effects) and true artistry is left out in the cold.

See a trend here?

I fully agree with you, but when you have a world in which people are increasingly giving up their right to independent thought and allowing others to tell them what they should be watching/playing/listening to... well, we''re fucked.

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quote:
Original post by Oluseyi
How many people still buy vinyl records? Audiophiles and DJs only. The common consumer buys CDs and (increasingly rarely) cassettes.


That''s a different thing. CDs and vinyl records are just different media. They both store the same information (music). 2D or 3D is a different matter. 2D games are not any better or worse than 3D games, they''re just different. Tetris is great in 2D, you could make a 3D version, but it wouldn''t be any better, it would just be different.

3D games are good in a lot of situations. 2D games are good in different situations.

John B

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quote:
Original post by JohnBSmall
That''s a different thing. CDs and vinyl records are just different media. They both store the same information (music). 2D or 3D is a different matter. 2D games are not any better or worse than 3D games, they''re just different. Tetris is great in 2D, you could make a 3D version, but it wouldn''t be any better, it would just be different.

That, sir, was why my next line was "A more pertinent example."

*shrugs*

It doesn''t defeat the argument anyway.

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quote:
Original post by Oluseyi
It doesn''t defeat the argument anyway.



It wasn''t meant to defeat the argument. It was meant to point out that while:
CDs are better than vinyl
WinXP is (probably) better than Win3.x (please don''t turn this into a windows debate)
DVD is better than VHS

3D is not inherently better than 2D.

Anyway, I don''t want to start a war.

John B

"It''s not how many dimensions you use, it''s how you use them that counts." - me

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quote:
Original post by JohnBSmall
CDs are better than vinyl

Just like 3D and 2D, not necessarily. There''s a particular sound unique to vinyl - that crackling noise as the pick skips and passes over little dust particles. Agreed, CDs have a greater storage capacity, longer lifetime and suffer less degradation. However, in some instances vinyl would be preferrable.

Which is how I view 3D. 3D is a much better approximation of the real world, so if you''re trying to simulation something even remotely possible in our universe... Even overhead strategy games (ostensibly 2D) can benefit from being 3D. So we agree, but just don''t state it in similar fashion. I consider 3D generally "better" than 2D, but in certain specific situations clearly the wrong choice. As you said, "it''s how you use them that counts."

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1. 2D games aren't dead. Other people have already pointed that out, but I figured I would chime in.

2. Vinyl LP sound quality is *superior* to CDs...for about the first 100 or so plays. After that, CDs reign supreme.

3. Beta is *the* format for production quality video. VHS is only used for consumer products.


DavidRM
Samu Games


Edited by - DavidRM on January 15, 2002 7:46:12 PM

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quote:
Original post by DavidRM
2. Vinyl LP sound quality is *superior* to CDs...for about the first 100 or so plays. After that, CDs reign supreme.



...and assuming that you have top notch equipment, and that it is maintained in perfect condition. Unless you have a multi-thousand dollar record player in perfect condition, I doubt the quality would come anywhere near a $50 CD player.

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My opinion on this whole topic is kinda split. I do kinda agree with the trend towards using 3D to replace 2D, even for games that arent stirctly 3D in nature. Yes many of these games would look better with hand drawn 2D tiles, but I think we are just at a transition phase here, where companies learn slowly what does work & what doesnt work, where artists learn to think a bit differently when they design graphics, and where programmers learn more how to generate "2D-quality" 3D graphics. A lot of the stuff going on now, especially with advanced graphics techniques like shaders, will help(are helping) programmers. And with this process, artists/modelers need time to learn how to adjust their work to take full advantage of this stuff. 2D graphics has been stable for a LONG LONG time, but even after several years of being mainstream, 3D graphics is still very immature. So I guess I see where 2D has its benefits NOW, but in the long run 3D is where its at, and if companies dont adopt 3D now that will only make the transition take longer.

On the other hand, I have one other unique perspective with 3D which it seems I NEVER see anybody bring up: people who CANT play 3D games. My wife cant play a lot of 3D games because they just plain make her sick. This is especially true in 1st person view or 3rd person (where the camera follows the character). The movement of everything makes her dizzy. It was funny, one time I was playing Unreal Tournament and kicking major behind, and she needed me to do something. So I told her I couldn't stop or it would screw up my game. I told her I would do it, but she had to take over my game for a minute while I did it. She was only playing for like 2 minutes, but she was noticably disoriented by the time she was done (and I was a little proud, she at least go me a kill:-) ). Not all 3D games do this. For the most part, she is fine with games that use 3D to simulate a side scroller, and most racing games are fine with her. I think for the most part her problems are when the camera does more than just slight/gradual movements (side scrollers and racing games seem to have pretty smooth camera movement).

It kinda sucks for her too, because all these new games come out, and every time we look at the back cover we have to question whether or not she can play the game. And all of her old favorite games are moving (or have moved) into 3D, especially into 1st person.

Does anyone else have (or know anyone who has) these problems?






Edited by - LordKronos on January 16, 2002 9:41:48 AM

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as technology advances, soon 3d will be able to perfectly simulate 2D stuff, including style and texture. the bottom line is that 3d is more imperical -the world is 3d, so should models of it be. it saves space, time, and is the rave -go 3d!

for example, the great fallout:tactics. 2d -it devours so many resources it is scary. the fallout peoples are making fallout3 in 3d, but plan to retain the styles and feel from the 2d titles.

3 years ago they wouldnt have dreamed of making a 3d fallout - the technology simply wasnt ready.

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LordKronos: the only game that made me sick like that was Wolfenstein 3D. Don''t know why though.

Going back to the topic though, the problem with 3D games is they''re very EXPENSIVE to make. Eventually, most (if not all) companies will buy 3D engines and modify them to their needs. Game budgets are out of control as it is, and the further we go the worse it will get. Licensing 3D engines (and other stuff like that) is a good thing though, because it will free developers to work on the gameplay. Half-Life is a good example of that.

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I''ve been watching this thread since yesterday and always find this topic a good read.

I personally don''t believe 2D is dead at all. Sure it has a much smaller market than it did 5 years ago, but that doesn''t mean it''s going anywhere.

I won''t bother to mention names of 2D games since it has been done already, but the point is that the technology used (2D vs. 3D) does not make a great game.

The technology is simply a vessel in which the game designer wishes to present his/her vision. My personal favorite style is pre-rendered 3D graphics in a 2D game. To me it features the best quality of graphics found in any game (I personally believe that today''s 3D graphics still look way to blocky even in the best 3D game).

Anyways, as most of us are hobby or budget/shareware developers, I think chosing a technology should be based on factors such as personal vision of the game, technical (both programming and artistic) abilities, and available resources (funds, software, etc.). Your goal should be creating your game the way you want it. What the rest of the world is doing shouldn''t mean squat.

borngamer

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Imagine a game like Monkey Island 2 or Day of the Tentacle, but instead of concentrating on amazing geforce 4 graphics (!), it''s all applied to design, with brilliant gameplay and puzzles. And it''d last for ages. I''m sure a lot of people, especially LucasArt old timers, would lap that up. Right?

Ah well. At least IndyProject (Fate of Atlantis 2) is in the works. =)

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quote:
Original post by LordKronos
Does anyone else have (or know anyone who has) these problems?

I''ve read about it. It''s apparently an inability to compensate for the unrealistic motion and positioning presented in certain 3D games (most notably FPSes). I''m sure she''ll have absolutely no problems if you could hook UT up to a VR headset.

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Guest Anonymous Poster
I think demand and whatever people want and agree with is only consequence of the ammount of marketing and advertising, from 3D games are better than 2D to the war against terrorism is right and cool, with a lot of advertising you don''t need to care about what people want, most of the editorial content of magazines is paid, anyway I still prefer 2D games rather than all the 3D ones.

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As long as we view images on 2D screens, there is no valididity in the idea that 3D should replace 2D because it is a closer model of reality. Games are not a model of reality ... they are art and entertainment. They are art, because they expose to us the vision / creation of another human being. They are able to be as realistic or abstract as the creator and technology allow. But more realistic is not in any wat better from either an art OR an entertainment point of view. Entertainment wise, I''ll admit that I find the graphics of HALO to be much more compeling than Doom ... and the game more fun because of it. But isn''t it interesting to note that people don''t always like realism. Like action movies, or hot chick with boob jobs, or explosion sounds in outer space ... etc etc etc ... and in games ... almost everyone I work with fondly remembers "time pilot", "combat", "joust", and "cinepede" ... all of which are decidedly unrealistic ... even though they are not purely abstract games such as "tetris", they still benifit from their simple, extrarealistic (read extra as in extramarital affairs ... ) interfaces, which allow the player to simply concentrait on the mechanics and fun of the actual game, instead of being burdened by their slight failings in modeling reality. I find movies and games which are mostly realistic much more disappointing in their shortcummings, than media which is completely unbound by the real world.

That''s my $0.05 ... keep the change.

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I think that what is meant by 3d being a more accurate representation of reality is (bear with me):

Ideally when writing a program that is intended to mimic reality you''ll want to be able to apply as many real-world principles as possible. The pinnacle of this would be able to write a program that simply creates all of the laws of physics in a game environment, then all of the objects in the game are appropriately affected.

To get closer to this we would use a 3d engine rather than a 2d engine because it allows movement on all 3 of the planes that we ourselves use for daily interaction (the 3 physical dimensions).

There were references to how one can still make a "2d" game utilizing a 3d engine. Personally, I''m not sure how that would look other than an example like Paper Mario where there were pseudo-2d graphics in a 3d engine. A game I am working on presently uses 3d model-renders in a 2d engine. So the graphics might look 3d while actually requiring only 2d object collision (a much simpler form of collision, in my opinion).

Charles Galyon

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quote:
Original post by Xai
As long as we view images on 2D screens, there is no valididity in the idea that 3D should replace 2D because it is a closer model of reality.

Gee, then I guess we''ve been watching movies totally wrong all along. We should have been looking for a way to "flatten" them to two dimensions instead...

Your statement is a crock. Feel free to disagree.

quote:
Games are not a model of reality ... they are art and entertainment. They are art, because they expose to us the vision / creation of another human being. They are able to be as realistic or abstract as the creator and technology allow. But more realistic is not in any wat better from either an art OR an entertainment point of view.

So, if the subject matter of a game is close to a possible real-world situation, we should still ignore "reality." So we shouldn''t try to create more realistic physics and motion in sports games? So we should pursue more realistic intelligence behaviors and gameplay options in the so-called "strategy" and "role-playing" genres. Good God, man, you''re asking us to go back to the Dark Ages of Computer Gaming!

I understand what you''re trying to say, but you fail to consider than "realism", art and entertainment are not mutually exclusive (nor are you limited to 2 out of 3). Realism is the objective in all games that mirror real-world situations (most notably flight, combat and racing/driving simulations) - but only so much as does not detract from the art and entertainment.

See Game Design for more discussion.

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Yeah I can't play 3D games they make me feel sick. As for publishers not signing 2D games that is rubbish. Remember Baldurs Gate? They made 4 games with that engine. Age of Empires 1 and 2?

I love 2D games with prerendered graphics. I have always hated 3D games because I can see that creatures are composed of polygons (yuk!). The scenery is often repetitive and sparse. 9 times out of 10 the games lack originailty and are dull. You always need the latest hardware to play them. When you have bills to pay are you going to spend $2000 to play the latest 3D game? Nah... Don't think so!

I have seen screen shots of a 3D engine recently that made everything look like it was prerendered. However until I see a playable demo I don't believe it. As for 2D programmers feeling intimidated by 3D I wouldn't worry about it. In a couple of years 3D engines will be so cheap and easy to use that all programmers will be able to use them. Not using these engines would as unthinkable as artists not using programs like 3D Studio Max.


Couldn't resist replying to Oluseyi:

>Gee, then I guess we've been watching movies totally wrong all >along. We should have been looking for a way to "flatten" them >to two dimensions instead...

>Your statement is a crock. Feel free to disagree.

Movies have been flattened to 2D. They are the equivalent of 2D prerendered games.



Edited by - Davaris on January 17, 2002 5:41:32 PM

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