I do enjoy the bizarre storm of comments for the Beyond Two Souls review, which has lead me to believe some people don't know what a review actually is.
What is the fascination with attributing pleasing numbers to something you may have not have even played? Why does this affect you so?
A review is not gospel. It is not anything other then a rough guide. A persons opinion, with stated fact and if you're lucky you might get to know that humans tastes behind the writing, get a real sense of what that person may or may not personally enjoy. The best reviews are honest to that reviewer.
I tend to try demo's, take a opinion from more then one source, or more importantly gravitate toward the things I enjoy. I'm me and I know what me likes! I know I'll like Disgaea regardless if its a 8 or a 10. If a few publications had lower scores and honest reasons (and genuine flaws) as to why its only a 6... I might dig a little deeper. Find out what it is people don't like. Judge it on what I want from the game.
How many of us enjoy games nobody else does? I liked Dark Void, I don't have the willpower to explain why, but it was fun little game and it was exactly what I expected. I wouldn't go around demanding everyone I know must play it. What I'm getting at here is Europa Universalis IV isn't a 10 out of 10 for everyone!
A review is incredibly handy for when a Sim City comes out. I mean who knew that would be such a bloody mess. Saved me money there. If you love passive gaming experiences, this review may at the most, make you consider your purchase, or have a little ying to other yanging reviews. Information is power and more detailed opinions cannot hurt the consumer and to help navigate what you may or may not enjoy.
Really what I'm trying to say is, please, lay off the "here comes the shitstorm" popcorn gifs.
What do you mean I have to write more. Sigh. Fine.
its completely mad to keep referencing the golden age of film to a completely different medium.
When gaming makes the history books there would be no Citizen Kane. You would have a movement, or selection of pieces which tie into a generation of consoles. A natural progression of a theme. It wasn't just Mario or Sonic. It was Mr Nutz, Zool... and many many others, a contribution of developers. Hell, I suspect the Snes, megadrive rivalry could be considered the golden age.
One day in the future whilst we have our oculus rift playboy devices we'll look back at what we consider to be our own personal Citizen Kane game. But gaming is a very different beast.
Really the point I'm getting at is games is its own art. Generally a team game which feeds off modern technology, modern ideas, trailblazer's... a whole movement. A Citizen Kane moment will not happen. Its a buzzword lazy Journalists piss out as an explanation shortcut.
Is pong the Citizen Kane of gaming... yer.. why not. Was made in 1972, hugely popular, was the birth of gaming, first successful game, and hey... was copied over and over. The birth of popular gaming and the birth of a new medium. Why not indeed. Now I'll fuck off.
Edit - Thank you for the excellent comments. Inspired me to write a better piece and and to think it through.
I've backed a load of Kickstarters at this point. I'm a huge fan of backing a team directly. Huge fan of freeing teams from creative blockers. Huge fan of funding my personal niche.
I love the Neverhood.
So why did I pull out of the Kickstarter. Mostly gut feeling. I'd seen a fair few Kickstarters I wanted to fund on paper but something screamed no (mostly Mr Wallet of Wallet Hall). I'd never pulled out of a Kickstarter before.. was surprisingly easy to do.
Now I've received a fair few update emails from the Armikrog team (every day pretty much) and the previous two bothered me slightly. Directly begging the backers to put in more money and asking us to Blitz facebook. On one hand I understand the promotion and desire to create this game. On the other hand... piss off. I already coughed up and I'm not going to bother anyone on facebook. That's what Candy Crush Saga is for.
But this didn't really bother me. It's a gut feeling. Tennapel's personal beliefs didn't change my opinion. The feel of the Kickstarter wasn't for me. Maybe it was the email updates tone in general... I'm not sure. What I am sure of is that I don't feel the need to back this project.
Maybe someone smarter then me can tell me why I feel the way I do.
Next year Jeremy buys Footmall 2013 and sells last years version to contribute towards to this miraculous purchase event. Jeremy would not have done this without selling. He just might have felt narked at buying the same game with a superficial update, but at a lesser cost...
Wee Tiny Tim buys a game he could not have afforded at full price. Mother has a crippling addiction to faberge eggs and money is tight. One day Wee Tiny Tim will have a steady income (if he survives the TB) and there is a good chance he will buy his games new. He might even buy Footmall 2015.
Two sets of long term customer (in one poor example) that the publishers actively want to eradicate.
Then there are those who are on the fence with games or genres that dont immediately appeal to them. But at a lower cost they might take a punt on something out of their comfort zone, who knows, they might even lend it to a friend. This epiphany might lead to a brand new purchase. Another group alienated by consumer mistrust and publisher abuse of power.
After this new generation dies will the servers remain? Can we still acquire and play our old games when the xbollox and ps4 winds down. When that hard drive dies can I reacquire my favoured games? Will I have to re-buy everything again? Would it be a total arse to lend a game to a friend... Can I lend? Why is the customer always wrong, is it because the publishers can get away with practices no other entertainment medium can get away with? If so is this because the mainstream media still to this day treats gaming with sneering contempt. A hobby for the nerds and socially awkward.
Are we going to sleepwalk into a console wide SimCity launch with transparent lies so perfectly outrageous future historians will call this the brown age of console gaming.
Publishers are so short term is completely amazes me they got the job in the first place. All they see are walking cash-cows and I hope the milk runs dry... sour.... no... dry.
Anyway... lets finish on some buzz-words. Exclusive! To your console only! No-one else can play YOUR games! Dont let that POOR play YOUR games that you BOUGHT! SYSTEM EXCLUSIVITY FOR YOUR TWATTING CONSOLE ONLY!terms and conditions apply.
Disclaimer - Jeremy Pickles doesn't even like Footmall.
We are precious about our obscure passions. Forever wanting them to stay hidden from the prying eyes of the hated general public. The general public who play those silly touch screen phone games, who simply don't understand games like we do.
Some games are obscure for good reason, others the inspiration behind whole genres. The classic Herzog Zwei inspiring the concept of real time strategy which had piss poor AI but even now influences games of today such as Brutal Legend, which forever (on many a gaming forums) seems derided as a poor, misleading, missed opportunity of a game. Will such a game be regarded well in years to come?
I fondly remember an Amstrad game called "How to be a Complete Bastard". It had a genius concept. Make everyone at the house party (you crashed) leave.You could get drunk, piss in plant pots and generally act like the title suggests. It also featured Ade Edmondson. This whole idea has never been revisited (or has it? - cue X-Files music) and dammit I would love to play a modern version. I'm sure a lot of you would too.
I spent hours upon hours playing Gravity Power and Hunter on the Amiga and I don't think I had ever proclaimed their virtues for the world to hear. Maybe part of me finds pleasure in indulging in a secret that the rest of the world somehow missed.
Obscurity is becoming rarer these days. I found everything I thought obscure on the internet in seconds....
I miss those games which had the personal rather then corporate touch. Those games have become rare indeed in the big budget world. It seems you need the big creative name to inspire quirky new gaming concepts (oh hai Mr Kojima) and that saddens me and directly diminishes our own obscure games of today. Now is that a bad thing? In the interests of new and exciting ideas... yes!
The only upside to the behemoth of modern gaming is the reinvention of "indie" gaming which is a good thing for all. Small low cost games that divert in other directions other then shiny graphical power and could well inspire future big budget gaming.
Will games such as Resonance of Fate, Haunting Ground, Folklore become someone's obscure classics in the future? With the holy power of internet it's pretty hard for even the most bizarre modern game to remain hidden... in fact games like "Holy Invasion of Privacy, Badman! What Did I Do To Deserve This?" flourish on the idea of it being one of those precious hidden gems ( I spoke of in my first paragraph)... we all know about Badman.
The long and short of this article is... does anyone remember an arcade game in the 16-bit era where you're a transforming side scrolling spaceship that transforms into a robot? You know.... like R-Type.... it's doing my head in...