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disorderlyvision
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Does anyone dislike involved storylines in platformers?

by disorderlyvision Sat Mar 30, 2013 12:41 am

In my opinion the platformer is a genre that doesn't need a storyline. They are about level design and good controls. Why do most of the modern games feel they need to put 20 minute cut-scenes into the game. One of the reasons I have always enjoyed retro-platformers is the 'pick up an play' nature. Title screen.... start button.... level one, go!

I got some Wii games a couple weeks ago, and I was just giving them all a quick test run. I put in the Wario game and had to sit through like a half hour of cutscenes and dialog before I could play. It just seems so unecessary to me. I don't care about Wario's story, I just want to play the game.

I get my Story fix playing RPG's, adventure etc. Platformers, shmups, racing games etc can skip the story and focus on the game play.
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Cronozilla
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Re: Does anyone dislike involved storylines in platformers?

by Cronozilla Sat Mar 30, 2013 1:36 am

I think for action, platformer, and action adventure, I prefer a sort of story told through the world approach.

I think one of the reasons why all those old NES games enthralled us so much is our imaginations filled in the gaps. It's a case of viewer fulfilling art, I suppose.
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Re: Does anyone dislike involved storylines in platformers?

by Gamerforlife Sat Mar 30, 2013 2:08 am

I think a good story makes any genre better, if it's handled well. Watching too many cutscenes or reading too much dialog in any action oriented genre can be annoying though (cough Metal Gear cough)
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Re: Does anyone dislike involved storylines in platformers?

by Retronomy Sat Mar 30, 2013 11:03 am

I do appreciate a story in my games, even more so if the story is involved. Although, 20 minute cutscenes is excessive in any genre, really. Most platformers tell their story passively in the background. But I do like the occasional game that breaks away from this and tries to tell a story in a more active fashion. These kinds of stories work particularly well with platformers that encourage/require exploration, such as metroidvanias.

You mentioned stories in shmups, one good example I have found is in Tyrian, which allows you to unlock story segments and read them in between stages, but only if you want to or care. They are otherwise entirely ignorable if you just want to shoot stuff.
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Re: Does anyone dislike involved storylines in platformers?

by Erik_Twice Sat Mar 30, 2013 11:18 am

Cutscenes are 90% bullshit. You don't make a good game by splicing a movie into it.
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disorderlyvision
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Re: Does anyone dislike involved storylines in platformers?

by disorderlyvision Sat Mar 30, 2013 11:57 am

Retronomy wrote:You mentioned stories in shmups, one good example I have found is in Tyrian, which allows you to unlock story segments and read them in between stages, but only if you want to or care. They are otherwise entirely ignorable if you just want to shoot stuff.


Yeah, I could handle something like that. I guess what I am really complaining about is the forced cutscenes. I don't even really mind the games that let you hit a button and skip all the scenes/dialogue. It's the ones' like the Wario game I mentioned in the OP, that won't let you skip, and forces you to sit there for 20-30 minutes watching some nonsensical story before you get to any game play. A lot of games do that, Wario was just the most recent one, and I was irritated about it the whole time I was sitting through it.

And it seems games have gotten worse about it over the years. When I was growing in you'd pretty much put in a cart and 20 seconds later you's be playing the first level. Now practically every game feels it needs some grand introduction and has a 20 minute fmv. I just think there a certain genres that really don't need it.

Mario games are a decent example. On the NES/SNES, put in the game, press the start button on the title screen... play. Perhaps a dialogue box here and there "oh no, the princess has been kidnapped" or a "Sorry the Princess is in another castle" at the end of a boss. That's it. play the game and enjoy. All the modern Mario's (galaxies, sunshine, even the 2d NSMB wii) all start out with cutscense.
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samsonlonghair
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Re: Does anyone dislike involved storylines in platformers?

by samsonlonghair Sat Mar 30, 2013 1:00 pm

I just picked up Sonic Colors yesterday. Cool game so far. Thank god I can skip the cut scenes though. I haven't been able to sit through a single one so far. The ability to skip a cut scene makes a big difference.
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Re: Does anyone dislike involved storylines in platformers?

by Xeogred Sat Mar 30, 2013 1:04 pm

Yeah it's moreso an issue with most gaming in general nowadays. I almost felt alienated for a second jumping into Demon / Dark Souls for not telling me anything or holding my hand, and I completely loved that.
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Re: Does anyone dislike involved storylines in platformers?

by samsonlonghair Sat Mar 30, 2013 1:39 pm

I think it bears mentioning that the very first video game story was in the archetype platformer, Donkey Kong. We can complain about storylines in platformers, but that's exactly where they originated.


Wiki wrote:Donkey Kong is the first example of a complete narrative told in video game form, and it employs cut scenes to advance its plot. The game opens with the gorilla climbing a pair of ladders to the top of a construction site. He sets the Lady down and stomps his feet, causing the steel beams to change shape. He then moves to his final perch and sneers. This brief animation sets the scene and adds background to the gameplay, a first for video games. Upon reaching the end of the stage, another cut scene begins. A heart appears between Jumpman and the Lady, but Donkey Kong grabs the woman and climbs higher, causing the heart to break. The narrative concludes when Jumpman reaches the end of the rivet stage. He and the Lady are reunited, and a short intermission plays. The game then starts over at a higher level of difficulty.

The whole article

Food for thought.
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J T
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Re: Does anyone dislike involved storylines in platformers?

by J T Sat Mar 30, 2013 4:44 pm

samsonlonghair wrote:I think it bears mentioning that the very first video game story was in the archetype platformer, Donkey Kong. We can complain about storylines in platformers, but that's exactly where they originated.


Not to be a total nitpicky pain in the ass, but there were text adventures before that, like Colossal Cave Adventure (5 years prior to the release of Donkey Kong).
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