Page 190 of 339

Re: Games Beaten 2016

Posted: Mon Jul 18, 2016 11:37 am
by Ack
Exhuminator wrote:
Ack wrote:Then go play the other swansong of the waning days of the genre.

I take it you weren't a fan of CiNG's glorious works.


Haha, oh no, it's just that their stuff I see as a revival period for point-and-click style gameplay. 1998 marks the end of the genre's dominant period on the US scene. CiNG doesn't really get going in the US until the late 2000s, and point-and-clicks finally see a true major comeback with the rise of the indie devs we now have. We're now in what I'd consider to be a second great age for the genre, but there's a decade in there where it's pretty much dead for all but the most hardcore of fans.

Re: Games Beaten 2016

Posted: Mon Jul 18, 2016 12:08 pm
by Exhuminator
Ack wrote:1998 marks the end of the genre's dominant period on the US scene.

As far as prominence goes, I can agree.

As far as fantastic entries into the genre goes, I cannot. Quite a few excellent high budget adventure games were made during 2000-2005, even if the mainstream critics chose to be oblivious in light of other genres.
Ack wrote:CiNG doesn't really get going in the US until the late 2000s, and point-and-clicks finally see a true major comeback with the rise of the indie devs we now have.

I think what I was getting at there, is with the rise of the DS, and its large body of adventure games, the genre had a tangible resurgence at least in the handheld realm.
Ack wrote:but there's a decade in there where it's pretty much dead for all but the most hardcore of fans.

Well now I get what you're saying. Before it seemed you believed that after 1998 no more good adventure games were made, but I just read it wrongly that way. But yes, the adventure genre is strong in today's mainstream market if you count sales from studios like Telltale Games, Quantic Dream, and Spike Chunsoft. Also adventure games are popular on mobile these days.

Speaking of adventure games this is my next jam:
Image

It's literally been sitting on my PC shelf since 2002. I think 14 years is long enough for proper reserva.

Re: Games Beaten 2016

Posted: Mon Jul 18, 2016 12:10 pm
by isiolia
1. Rise of the Tomb Raider (Xbox One)
2. DOAX3 Fortune Edition (PS4)
3. Uncharted 4 (PS4)
4. DOOM (2016) (PC)
5. Halo 5 (Xbox One)
6. Dark Souls (PC)
7. Call of Duty (PC)
8. Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare (PC)
9. Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain (PS4)

Clocked nearly 71 hours doing 47/50 of the missions and a decent number of side ops. Didn’t bother completing the missions 48-50 as they’re challenge versions of previous ones. I did try 48, but it’s kinda cheap, and also one that I’d want Quiet back for, and I didn’t feel like jumping through that particular hoop. Practically speaking, I think I’ve seen most of the actual story included, and could spend tens more hours 100% clearing it (game says 56% as it is).

(spoilering the rest for length, not spoilers)

I actually picked back up on the game I started back when it released, and it took me a couple sessions to get back into it. Part of that was coming to the realization that running between things to do is often not a particularly effective way to tackle them. The game environment is open, but works better when not treated entirely that way. I started enjoying it a lot more when I started calling for a helicopter to pick me up more often.

Another thing I intended/tried to do was swap to playing as a different character. As has been pointed out on the internet, one can actually play through (most of) the game as any of your personnel that you can put in the Combat unit. That includes women, though pretty much all of the opposing soldiers are men (offhand, the only exceptions are Skull sniper units, and Quiet), so female recruits only come from rescues.
After making a point to do the prisoner rescue side-ops to diversify my workforce, repeating an earlier mission a few times to rank up Seething Coyote, the blonde Russian communications officer I forced to do field work… I ran into the need to be using Snake in order to trigger a side-op event. ._.

Swapping characters meant running back out to the helicopter platform, calling a chopper, getting on the chopper, “starting” a mission to let me pick the loadout (to include character), backing out of it, and restarting the side-op to land back on the platform, jump off the chopper, and run back down to Quiet’s cell.
While I’m sure there are fairly few times when Snake would be required (and that not be noted in-game), I figured it’d just be safer to swap back to using him, given how not-quick swapping characters is. It’s to Kojima Production’s credit that it’s even an option though, even if it’s not 100% “there”. There are also little things, like enemies still saying “he” when referring to you, or people still yelling “SNAAAKE” when you die, etc. Flip side, a lot of voice work was implemented that has no other purpose than letting you play as a female character.

In general though, the game just has a way of making basic actions take longer. Playing a Bethesda open world game, for example, if you want to fast-travel to a quest location, it takes seconds. In MGSV, you call a chopper, you wait for the chopper, you get on it, you take off, you get back to the mobile command center, you go back to map, pick a landing zone, wait through the animation/cutscene, and finally can jump off…and probably still have to run a little to get to your objective.
Far more immersive, but also far, far more time consuming. Ultimately, the process is quite tedious, given that the game intends for you to do it hundreds of times. Things that are less common, like checking in at different points of Mother Base, can take even longer.

We have had Metal Gear games that use the basic model, but far more concise. The PSP entries are like that, particularly Peace Walker, which is the primary game that the Phantom Pain follows up, both narratively and mechanically.

Years ago, Hideo Kojima indicated that MGSV would be more like a TV show than a movie, referencing (at least) reduced amount of cutscenes and things. He incorporated that notion into the game to a fair degree. For example, each mission has quick opening and closing credits, a fair bit of which credit in-game characters. Apparently they wanted to use an “80s action filter” for some of it, but it was too intensive for the older platforms.
I think the parallel could be taken further – the mostly-canned animations for getting on/off the helicopter, for instance, could be stock shots.
Even down to the way the story is told through the missions. As I grumbled about in the “What are you playing” thread, a fair number of missions are for fairly inconsequential stuff, at least as far as the actual game story is concerned. On considering it though, it’s comparable to what a lot of TV shows would end up like. Essentially, MGSV has two chapters, or what’d be seasons. The first, more drawn out, that’s mission 1-31 or so. The second “season” pads things out with repeats/challenge missions, but moves forward with a lot of plot development and twists in the unique episodes. Ultimately, it leaves off with open-ended plots, along with at least one big completely unresolved one, which could be a “third season” that it didn’t get renewed for.

Looking at the game from the “I wanna be a MOVIE” angle of most of the others in the series makes it seem awkward. Considering it as a two-season box set of a Diamond Dogs TV show…and it comes together more logically. I don’t think that’s a particularly unique thought (there are multiple edits on Youtube towards that end, even). Just saying, I think it actually “works” that way.

Even some of the remnants of intended plots that got reduced or dropped (which MGSV has a few of) work in that context. It makes it more interesting to look those up, or pore over the tapes (which largely replace codec conversations…it still means there’s hours of stuff to listen to though).

I’m skeptical that Kojima intended for quite all of the parallels to TV shows that are possible, as not all are positive. Still, I think the resulting game is worth spending time with. It just takes a lot more time – and more effort – to get as much out of as earlier entries basically forced on the player.

Re: Games Beaten 2016

Posted: Mon Jul 18, 2016 12:21 pm
by Ack
Exhuminator wrote:
Ack wrote:1998 marks the end of the genre's dominant period on the US scene.

As far as prominence goes, I can agree.

As far as fantastic entries into the genre goes, I cannot. Quite a few excellent high budget adventure games were made during 2000-2005, even if the mainstream critics chose to be oblivious in light of other genres.
Ack wrote:CiNG doesn't really get going in the US until the late 2000s, and point-and-clicks finally see a true major comeback with the rise of the indie devs we now have.

I think what I was getting at there, is with the rise of the DS, and its large body of adventure games, the genre had a tangible resurgence at least in the handheld realm.
Ack wrote:but there's a decade in there where it's pretty much dead for all but the most hardcore of fans.

Well now I get what you're saying. Before it seemed you believed that after 1998 no more good adventure games were made, but I just read it wrongly that way. But yes, the adventure genre is strong in today's mainstream market if you count sales from studios like Telltale Games, Quantic Dream, and Spike Chunsoft. Also adventure games are popular on mobile these days.

Speaking of adventure games this is my next jam:
Image

It's literally been sitting on my PC shelf since 2002. I think 14 years is long enough for proper reserva.


Yeah, it's like this. Go on GOG, look up point-and-clicks, and arrange them by release date. There are roughly 45 entries GOG offers between 1986 and 1998, quite a few of which are compilations of whole series. Then you hit 1999-2008, and there are fewer than 15 here. Sure, some of them are quite good, including the 2007 Sam and Max entries. But it's a sharp decline. Then from 2008 and on, you're looking at whole pages of games again. Sure, some great games came out in the 2000s, but it was nowhere near what we saw before in terms of quantity. That is why I say the genre basically died with the release of Grim Fandango. The numbers just weren't there anymore, and they don't really come back until you start seeing revivals of LucasArts games again. After that, the door just opened, and now we're seeing tons. We have gone from the Golden Age to the Silver, I suppose.

1998 is also around the time game publications stop putting out awards for point-and-clicks. That I always found to be another telling sign of genre decline.

Re: Games Beaten 2016

Posted: Mon Jul 18, 2016 12:32 pm
by Exhuminator
Ack wrote:Then you hit 1999-2008, and there are fewer than 15 here. Some of them are quite good, including the 2007 Sam and Max entries. But it's a sharp decline.

A sharp decline in output I totally agree with. A sharp decline in quality not so much. For example, The Longest Journey is often cited as the greatest adventure game of all time, and it released in 2000. So what I'm simply saying is; while there weren't as many adventure games being produced during the time period you cited, there were still a few great ones produced nearly every year during that span. I'm just saying for hardcore adventure fans, they weren't starved for quality, but quantity sure.

Re: Games Beaten 2016

Posted: Mon Jul 18, 2016 1:08 pm
by Ack
Oh, I agree with you. Video game genre death and decline doesn't mean a total loss of that kind of game though or an end to quality product in what we get, just that they're no longer nearly as prominent as they were, and despite the quality entries are often not noticed by the majority or make it as one-off hits that don't lead to revivals.

When I think of video game genres that have declined or died, I think of SHMUPs, RTS, Point-and-Clicks, Survival Horror, Platformers, Beat 'Em Ups, 2D Fighters, etc. We're still getting quality titles in these genres, they're just nowhere near as prevalent as they were in their heyday and don't seem to attract the mass attention they used to. Quite a few of these have seen revivals at times too, or they just evolved in such a way that we have some kind of offspring.

In this particular case, I say the Point-and-Click went into decline with the release of Sanitarium and Grim Fandango in 1998(with Grim Fandango now regarded as a commercial failure), the abandoning of the SCUMM engine, Tim Schafer leaving Lucasarts, and Sierra leaving game development while its ownership changed hands. Sales were slumping around this time, while sales for genres like FPS were soaring.

Re: Games Beaten 2016

Posted: Mon Jul 18, 2016 1:26 pm
by Exhuminator
Ack wrote:Sales were slumping around this time, while sales for genres like FPS were soaring.

Absolutely, the rise of affordable and relatively powerful 3D hardware in the late 90s accelerated FPS to the forefront of PC gaming.

For the sake of posterity though, here's some quality PC adventure games that released during the time period you cited earlier. By quality, I mean adventure games I think don't suck. I'll just go with top 3 per year:
1999
Discworld Noir
Gabriel Knight 3
Amerzone: The Explorer's Legacy

2000
The Longest Journey
Escape from Monkey Island
Dracula: The Resurrection

2001
Myst III: Exile
Dracula: The Last Sanctuary
Necronomicon: The Gateway to Beyond

2002
Syberia
Shadow of Destiny
Sherlock Holmes: The Mystery of the Mummy

2003
Broken Sword: The Sleeping Dragon
Runaway: A Road Adventure
Uru: Ages Beyond Myst

2004
Syberia II
Myst IV: Revelation
Return to Mysterious Island

2005
Myst V: End of Ages
Still Life
Echo: Secrets of the Lost Cavern

2006
Al Emmo and the Lost Dutchman's Mine
Dreamfall: The Longest Journey
Secret Files: Tunguska

2007
Destination: Treasure Island
Runaway: The Dream of the Turtle
Sherlock Holmes: The Awakened

2008
Sherlock Holmes: Nemesis
Dracula 3: The Path of the Dragon
So Blonde

Re: Games Beaten 2016

Posted: Mon Jul 18, 2016 1:30 pm
by Ack
Exhuminator wrote:
Ack wrote:Sales were slumping around this time, while sales for genres like FPS were soaring.

Absolutely, the rise of affordable and relatively powerful 3D hardware in the late 90s accelerated FPS to the forefront of PC gaming.

For the sake of posterity though, here's some quality PC adventure games that released during the time period you cited earlier. By quality, I mean adventure games I think don't suck. I'll just go with top 3 per year:
1999
Discworld Noir
Gabriel Knight 3
Amerzone: The Explorer's Legacy

2000
The Longest Journey
Escape from Monkey Island
Dracula: The Resurrection

2001
Myst III: Exile
Dracula: The Last Sanctuary
Necronomicon: The Gateway to Beyond

2002
Syberia
Shadow of Destiny
Sherlock Holmes: The Mystery of the Mummy

2003
Broken Sword: The Sleeping Dragon
Runaway: A Road Adventure
Uru: Ages Beyond Myst

2004
Syberia II
Myst IV: Revelation
Return to Mysterious Island

2005
Myst V: End of Ages
Still Life
Echo: Secrets of the Lost Cavern

2006
Al Emmo and the Lost Dutchman's Mine
Dreamfall: The Longest Journey
Secret Files: Tunguska

2007
Destination: Treasure Island
Runaway: The Dream of the Turtle
Sherlock Holmes: The Awakened

2008
Sherlock Holmes: Nemesis
Dracula 3: The Path of the Dragon
So Blonde


Now, for the sake of posterity, please tell us how many of these became mainstream hits.

Re: Games Beaten 2016

Posted: Mon Jul 18, 2016 1:37 pm
by Exhuminator
Ack wrote:Now, for the sake of posterity, please tell us how many of these became mainstream hits.

Now now, to do so implies I disagreed with your original stance, which I did not.

For what it's worth though; The Longest Journey, Dreamfall, and The Myst games sold rather well from what I've read.

Re: Games Beaten 2016

Posted: Mon Jul 18, 2016 1:38 pm
by Ack
Exhuminator wrote:Now now, to do so implies I disagreed with your original stance, which I did not.


I know, but I'm having a laugh that both of us like having the last word.