Videogame Discussion Thread

Discussion in 'Geek Cave: Computers, Tablets, HT, Phones, Games' started by sphinxvc, Oct 9, 2015.

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  1. zerodeefex

    zerodeefex SBAF's Imelda Marcos

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    I love Metroid dread but it’s got strong competition for the best metroidvania of 2021, forget GoTY.

    Psychonauts 2 gets my vote. Fucking fantastic.
     
  2. Melvillian

    Melvillian Friend

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    Another one for Psychonauts 2. It's so good.
     
  3. fraggler

    fraggler A Happy & Busy Life

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    It Takes Two was an absolute blast to play through with my GF. Great co-op game play mechanics and some truly wonderful fantastical environments. Story was a touch basic and heavy handed and it was very tough to actually root for the characters for a while, but it was a wonderful experience over all. Highly recommended if you have someone local you want to test your relationship with.
     
  4. Alondite

    Alondite Acquaintance

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    I really hate that term, "Metroidvania" for a number of reasons.

    For one, it implies that Castlevania and Metroid are so similar in design that they can essentially be lumped together and treated as the same thing. This could not be further from the truth; only a handful of Castlevania games have any adventure elements at all, and the ones that do still differ from Metroid in significant ways that make them fundamentally different video games.

    Second, it's a genre label that has no meaning unless you're already familiar with the two franchises it references. That alone makes it a bad genre tag, but it also doesn't reference mechanics at all, so it doesn't communicate the moment-to-moment gameplay that one actually experiences while playing. That moment-to-moment experience is the defining aspect of any game.

    A better genre would be "Platform Action-Adventure," because it references both jumping as a primary function (platform), as well as concrete melee and/or projectile combat (action). The quality that leads most people to call a game a "Metroidvania" is an interconnected game world that grows as the player gains access to new abilities, but this is just an aspect of adventure games. Zelda does it, too, and nobody calls Zelda a Metroidvania.

    Beyond that, there are things Metroid does that no other game in the genre does that make it special, and unlike any other game claiming to be a "Metroidvania," or Metroid-like at all. Its level design, advanced movement tech, the way it punctuates negative space, how almost every upgrade provides new mechanical functions and functional utility, rather than simply augmenting existing functions (increased damage, things like that), etc. etc. are all things that no other game in the genre has successfully emulated. This keeps Metroid head-and-shoulders above the rest of the genre. I genuinely don't think there's another game in the genre that even comes close.
     
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  5. LetMeBeFrank

    LetMeBeFrank Won't tell anyone my name is actually Francis

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    I've only played Super Metroid and Symphony of the Night, but I preferred sotn. I've been meaning to play more of both series though.
     
  6. Alondite

    Alondite Acquaintance

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    SotN is pretty good, but it would have been better if it were structured like a typical Castlevania because it doesn't do anything with its adventure elements beyond bloating the game with negative space. It's level design is also really mediocre, especially in the upside-down castle where even basic mobility is an issue for no real reason or payoff. Its also held back by its RPG elements, which undermine the generally concrete nature of its interactions by adding a layer of abstraction, again, for no real reason or payoff. It aped aspects of Super Metroid's design for the sake of it without really understanding what makes them work.

    Of the probably several thousand games I've played over the last 30 years, Super Metroid might be the single best. Its movement tech combined with its level design gives it an astronomically high functional ceiling and gameplay potential. That's likely why it still has a thriving speedrunning community almost 3 decades after its release.
     
  7. scblock

    scblock Friend

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    I don't see how the term Platform Action-Adventure says anything about the gameplay at all. Like the term Metroidvania It still requires familiarity with other games that fit the genre, and doesn't touch at all on the world expanding with your abilities. As in you see a door or a platform or corridor but can't access it. But you know you will later when you gain the right tools. It's a useful reference-based shorthand, not unlike referencing Dark Souls or Soulsborne for games of that type.

    Metroidvania is a well understood term at this point and the common references for "what does it mean" refer people back to Super Metroid and Symphony of the Night, which pretty well form the basis of the definition.

    Also, that last paragraph could equally describe Symphony of the Night, Hollow Knight, or Ori & the Blind Forest. The Metroid games are some of my favorite of all time, but I can't help but read this post as anything other than tribalism. We should be thrilled there are so many excellent games that scratch this itch.
     
  8. Alondite

    Alondite Acquaintance

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    "Platform" specifically references jumping as a primary gameplay function. How do you get onto a suspended platform without a jump of some kind?

    "Action" is more vague, I'll admit, and is really a catch-all for games with concrete mechanics as primary functions, as opposed to RPGs which are defined by the abstraction of concrete mechanics into other (typically mathematical and/or RNG-based) forms.

    The world expanding with your abilities is the defining element of adventure games. If a game isn't structured in that way, then it isn't actually an adventure game.

    Super Metroid and Symphony of the Night are only superficially similar video games. Their moment-to-moment gameplay is very different. Pointing to one term that supposedly refers to both of them makes that term even more unnecessarily vague than it already is. "Metroidvania" doesn't actually communicate anything because Castlevania and Metroid offer fundamentally different gameplay experiences. I've gone into games like Ori and Axiom Verge (among others) thinking I was going to be getting a Metroid-like experience only to be sorely disappointed because they widely miss the mark.

    The last paragraph absolutely cannot be used to describe any of the games you mentioned. Symphony of the Night has virtually no movement tech, its world-expanding abilities are barely integrated into the overall flow of gameplay and instead function as keys in lock-and-key type barriers that only rarely crop up, and its level design doesn't encourage varied or creative use of its movement tech in the way that Metroid does (largely because it doesn't have any).

    Ori and Hollow Knight have their own issues, though in different ways and to varying degrees. Ori's interplay is excruciatingly shallow, not to mention that it does dumb things like using finite resources as both a means of upgrading and for unlocking pathways without giving the player any way of knowing which they should opt for at any given time. Its level design degenerates into linear solutions rather than developing into emergence and expression like Metroid does. It does a better job than SotN at integrating its abilities into regular gameplay, but they're still functionally more limited than Metroid's abilities. It has a ton of other issues, too, but none specifically related to the topic at hand.

    Hollow Knight would have been better without adventure elements altogether, because the deepest and most engaging moments in the game are boss battles. The lack of any real mechanical integration into its level design makes it more like jumping through hoops for the sake of it than a gameplay challenge to be solved and conquered. It would have been a better game if it were more like Shovel Knight or Mega Man.

    And none of the above games executes any degree of folded level design, much less to the degree that Metroid does.

    I'm a stickler for discrete and effective terminology when discussing video games, because the current state of games criticism and analysis is abysmal, which leads to games becoming increasingly more shallow and increasingly less engaging because people don't know how to effectively discuss game design or provide useful feedback on how to get the most out of an interactive system.
     
  9. zerodeefex

    zerodeefex SBAF's Imelda Marcos

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    Are you going to complain about the conflation between input lag and output lag next? This is the dumbest fucking hot take I’ve seen in a while and it’s a perfect example of the kind of dumbass nitpicking that makes 99.99% of the world laugh at audiophiles. Metroidvania is an industry accepted term at this point and it’s not going away. You can get on a soapbox about it but it's an acceptable classification for games nowadays.

    With regard to your opinion, you're entitled to it but this is pretty fucking subjective. I’ve been playing both Metroid and Castlevania since the NES and have a soft spot for 2D platform adventure games in general. Hell, I bought a gameboy advance day 1 as a broke college student working to pay my way and missed a few meals at the time just to play CotM and, later, fusion. In my opinion, there are many, many things Ender Lillies does much better than Dread. If I’m going back a little further, I’d peg both Ori games above it as well.

    Hollow knight is a tough one since I strongly dislike the aesthetic but the gameplay was good enough for me to finish it and the DLC. Either way, your dumb elitist take is tired and the kind of shit we’re trying to break down a bit more of here.
     
  10. Alondite

    Alondite Acquaintance

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    This has nothing to do with audiophiles. Go to any knowledgeable game design community and you'll find the exact same concepts being discussed, it's only the average gamer who's never given any consideration to design who finds it to be a "hot take."

    Whether or not it's accepted doesn't change the fact that "Metroidvania" is a dogshit term that only further obfuscates important concepts and undermines constructive discussion that could lead to better games. Whether you care to delve that deep into game design is up to you, but choosing not to doesn't change the fact these concepts are real, and that they matter. Communicating clearly matters, too.

    You're entitled to your opinion, too, but based on your posts, I'd say you understand jack-fucking-shit about the topic and you've given me zero reason to actually take you seriously, especially given how close-minded and needlessly aggressive you're being. Why do people get so sensitive about video games? Spoiler alert: Playing video games for entertainment doesn't teach you anything about game design or what makes a video game high-functioning (read: a good video game).

    "Elitest." Be more insecure why don't you. "I'm not familiar/can't identify with the concepts or ideas you're presenting, but I've an interest in the topic so I'm going to just assume you're being condescending." Grow up. I hold this position because video games have been incredibly important to me throughout my life (far moreso than audio and music, even), and I love them and want them to be the best that they can. What you call "nitpicking" I call "really fucking important aspects of game design." Ironic that you say you're trying to "break down" thinking like mine when that's exactly what game design communities are trying to do with truncating thinking like yours.
     
  11. scblock

    scblock Friend

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    OK, it's clear you're not interested in an actual discussion of this. Just pushing your personal opinion as "truth". Done.
     
  12. YMO

    YMO Chewbacca's hairy brother

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    I thought video games was for fun...not long ass paragraphs?
     
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  13. Alondite

    Alondite Acquaintance

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    No, I'm just not interested in having YouTube comment-grade discussion with people who clearly have no interest in the complexities of game design or any discussion that might reveal that their favorite games are *gasp* shallow and under-designed examples of sheer mediocrity. Carry on, I have other places where I can have interesting and meaningful discussion about video games.
     
  14. YMO

    YMO Chewbacca's hairy brother

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    I'll see you on /v/.
     
  15. Alondite

    Alondite Acquaintance

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    Yeah, because 4chan is where game designers and developers gather to talk shop about game design on a level equal to the level of audio discussion that happens here.

    No, here actually: https://www.designoriented.net/

    Feel free to join the community. And you can expect to not be attacked for your ideas while you learn new things to appreciate about games you already love. Or maybe learn that your favorite games are actually kind of shit. Oh well; Sonic Adventure is a shit game but I love it anyway, because that's how opinions work.
     
  16. YMO

    YMO Chewbacca's hairy brother

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    Dude I don't give a fuck about having a ten plus hour conversation about game design. I could do other cool things like bang bang the GF, listen to this killer album, go outside since it isn't hot as balls ATM in Florida, have a beer, watch a good movie and....actually just play video games for fun.

    If you are a game developer, then that's cool. This thread is just Friends talking stuff about video games, not having a PHD about "the backtracking of maps of an FPS single player mode," or why "arcade games aren't welcoming enough for new players."

    We are just a bunch of sweaty guys at times just talking random crap about video games and what we like about this topic on a headphone forum. Like...talk the shit and have fun?

    I work and do a lot of things, last thing I want is to spend less time on video games just to be a random guy on the internet talking about a topic that can last for ten hours about why this game design was crap....All while having your video games gathering dust since who cares about playing video games when you can just talk about it online and be a random Youtube video maker online who have fat opinions.
     
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    Last edited: Jan 11, 2022
  17. Alondite

    Alondite Acquaintance

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    Well it's obvious that video games aren't as important to you as they are to me. Without them I probably would have killed myself years ago, because my life growing up was less than great and video games were all I had to turn to for comfort. So sue me for being passionate about something incredibly important to me.

    Deep-dive discussions on game design are fun to me, and clearly not to you. That's fine. I don't see why you need to be so rude, though. I'm not insulting you or telling you what games you should or shouldn't like. I like plenty of games that I wholly acknowledge are shit, because what makes a game well-made and what makes them fun for a given individual are not inherently the same things.

    Have a nice day.
     
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  18. YMO

    YMO Chewbacca's hairy brother

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    Look @Alondite I understand why people use video games to escape their life's issues. I did that more than once in the past since at times I had low points in my life to the point I wanted to shoot myself in the head. However, you are being a giant Autist with your posts (since you aren't getting the hint) and your Elitism attitude. This isn't the thread or place for that, as stated here we are just a bunch of folks at your local bar chilling and talking stuff/crap. This is also why you are getting dislikes. It is not what you said, it is how you are saying it and presenting yourself with your posts here.
     
  19. abraxas666

    abraxas666 Friend

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    Aand back to our regular programming... So I was finally able to get my hands on an X Box Series X, and replaced the downstairs old DLP TV with an LCD gaming projector that can do 120hz at 1080p.

    Been playing a bit of Elder Scrolls online, and bought Final Fantasy XV with all the DLCs. I will probably buy Forza Horizon 5 as it looks amazing. And might even give the new flight simulater a gander.
     
  20. YMO

    YMO Chewbacca's hairy brother

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    Does anyone game on a TV with VRR? If so, do you care to use this feature?
     

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