That’s when you start thinking weird sci-fi stuff
You know eventually, you just kinda stop tasting these.
That’s when you start thinking weird sci-fi stuff.
Is that? Is that you?
Now, I’ve never made one myself,
But rumor has it, there’s a lot of things you have to take into account when designing a game.
Obviously, the gameplay itself and the aesthetic are what grabs a consumer’s eyes.
You pop the hood and now we’re looking at the hardware
We’re looking at the software.
What kind of engine you got here?
What kind of code your running?
Are you making your own?
What are the strengths?
What are the limitations?
And somewhere else, on a nice island, there’s
someone sleeping on a pile of money dreaming
I won’t bore you with the details, basically you
take the number of yachts you want to buy and
divide by a hundred – don’t forget to adjust for
But keep in mind, video games are a relatively
younger entertainment medium, so we haven’t
we haven’t exactly figured out how to balance
money, gameplay, and hardware yet.
After years and years, we now have definitive
proof that there’s diminishing returns when
chasing after next-gen graphics.
The pixels can only get so pretty and having
extra polygons isn’t drastically changing how I
feel about Madden NFL games.
On the money side of things, I will always
advocate for the welfare of the consumer,
so, while not overtly shady, I personally believe
the gaming industry needs to stop with all the
Don’t flirt with me.
Name your price and be done with it.
To complicate matters even further, video game
immortality has entered the room,
and we need to talk about this elephant before
the inevitable stampede.
Video game longevity depends on three things:
active development, active player base, and
Modern relevance is the most obvious because
popular games are played, shocker!
It’s also the most volatile factor, as relevancy
can come and go at the drop of a hat.
Games rise, fall, and rise again like the
changing tide with little rhyme, reason, or means
to engineer success.
In this day and age, the only way to make sure a
game stays dead is by making it unavailable to
the public– isn’t that right, Konami?
I know you want to pretend PT never existed.
So as long as the bones are publicly available,
nerds can gather around to form an active player base.
But not everyone is as brave to try things.
Some will settle for a faint pulse, but others
take more convincing.
More promises are required before they settle
down, and for them active development is the only
sign of life they will settle for.
Back in my day, there was no need for these kinds
It was everyone’s understanding that no game was
meant to last.
As we assimilated with the internet our
understandings evolved with it.
Yeah, yeah… I know.
These existed in PC land, but were not
commonplace on consoles –even the master race
needed physical discs to continuously update
their favorite games.
Developers made forever-vows to fans with their
They couldn’t promise that our favorite game
would last forever, but they promised us future generations.
The bloodline WILL continue.
Yet, some developers had the forethought or the
good fortune, to develop their games on hardware
that could be upgraded as time went on.
League of Legends, Minecraft, and Runescape are
over 14 human years old.
To put it in perspective – that’s almost 3 Wii U
and they still consistently dominate content
creator pop culture.
Rising and falling – admittedly, the video game
elders are predominantly multiplayer functions,
but immortality can be bestowed to single player
games as well – Dwarf Fortress is proof of that,
and Todd Howard’s got some weird cloning
obsession going on with Skyrim.
Let go Todd. Just let go. It’s been over 10 years
With all that in mind, the games industry has to
make a choice: design for now, or design for forever.
On one hand, I applaud Nintendo’s stoicism in the
face of the inevitable.
They’re putting their foot down. New consoles and
Their promise they choose to make is pedigree.
Ah, you wanna play the old games aye? Buy the old
You want to play the new games? Well, buy the new
They never put anything on sale. So, I don’t like
it but I do respect it as a consumer.
I know where I stand, I know where Nintendo
stands – and it makes it harder for them to get
sneaky grabs at my wallet.
On the other end of the spectrum, I do like some
games that bite the bullet early on.
I hold nothing against developers who set out to
just make a game. They see a potential future
so they upgrade the hardware for active
You got your DOTA 2’s, you got your CS:GO’s – and
I don’t play either.
These games have always been what they’ve always
Once again, I may not like it but I do respect it.
But there’s two kinds of games that I wag my
finger at – I don’t respect these at all.
Firstly, the games that are created from the
beginning with the sole purpose of immortality.
They have no vision and hardly any flavor.
Secondly, you got the games that aren’t built to
last, but they pose the promise as if they do.
The only thing either of these game archetypes
thought through was they wanted it to last forever.
And by it I mean the money flow.
They got your Battle Passes, your dailies, your
weeklies, your seasons.
Your converted currencies that take forever to
These games are filled to the brim with things to
do beyond just what the game offers.
Because it really doesn’t offer that much.
Play this game mode this many times.
Do this interaction this many times and then come
back tomorrow – same time and do it again.
I only need one reason to play a game: I enjoy
playing the game.
These games are becoming so needy regardless of
Blizzard launched Overwatch with a full-blown
esport scene on day one then they rereleased
virtually the same game but with a more
aggressive reach for your time and wallet this
Call of Duty trying to cash in on the battle
royale trend so they release their own free-to-
play model alongside their regular titles.
Halo may be improving with time, but what a sad
state of affairs Infinite began with.
AAA studios are selling me IOUs, and, as much as
I would love to blame the higher ups for tainting
the smaller innocent indie darlings, I got an
uneasy feeling it was the other way around.
At the very least, the indie scene might’ve found
their way into these nasty habits independently
through kickstarters and other crowdsourcing
Figured out dangling the same carrot over and
over can potentially bring in more money than
simply selling the carrot outright.
But don’t let my sparkling negativity fool you
into thinking we’re past the point of no return.
I’m genuinely hopeful for what the future will
bring from the video game immortals.
Open modding and active voting from the
playerbase is a great example of keeping track of
the community pulse.
Games can have a second, third, or fourth chance
My main and most vocal concern is the money
hungry missteps selling empty promises makes it
difficult to be a savvy consumer.
How can you write a game off as not worth my
time – a rushed piece of trash if it can change eventually?
How about on the other end?
How are my purchases safe from the games I do
enjoy when they can ship of Theseus itself into
something completely different in later years?
No purchase is safe.
In a backwards upside down kind of way, part of
my gaming fatigue at times comes from these
wannabe forever games that are popping up.
There’s something freeing about playing a game
that sets out to entertain you for a few fleeting moments.
And it doesn’t matter if it succeeds or fails.
It just didn’t try to keep me busy for as long as
And there’s equal joy to be found in games that
do keep trucking along that keep on being
developed but they don’t demand I pay attention
to their every promise.
Have a little nostalgia for another Terraria
run – ooh look! That’s new.
But what I’m describing is no different than what
mobile games already employ.
and the free to play market has been going in
None of this is new, it’s just becoming more
commonplace and creeping into the rest of the
game industry as trends tend to do.
It’s slipping outside of the industry even.
Into car companies, social media, movies, you
Capitalism, at its core, is meant to create
healthy competition by killing off those lacking in quality.
But what happens when those lacking in quality
have lost the ability, and the common decency, to
crawl into a hole and die?
You get these games that won’t settle anymore for
They want your bodies.
They want your time.
They no longer want to pop into pop culture, they
want to be the only culture that’s poppin’.
And ya can’t spell culture without “cult”.
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