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Different Games for Different Players

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Mankz 17th June 2008, 09:29 Quote
Very interesting article indeed.
Bauul 17th June 2008, 10:32 Quote
I agree, very interesting. It's a bit of a vicious circle, a certain type of people made the first games, so a certain type of people played them and spent money on them, so the same certain type of people made more games for the certain type of people playing them. Hopefully though as the games market becomes bigger and more profitable, companies can afford to take slight risks, such as Portal.

I think there are games that cater to all subsections and demographics of players, but there are a hell of a lot more of some types than others. Spore and Quake, for example, cater to polar opposites in terms of demographics, but you could count the games like Spore on one hand (and one finger if you're counting developers), where as games like Quake you'd need hands like something out of Spore to count them on. I think the expertise to create games for older/fairer/different playing style gamers does exist in the market, and it wouldn't be hard to tap into it, IF the money was there to push such games, which is where the problem lies.

As I said in the Girl Gamers thread, if all the guy gamers in the world spontaniously stopped playing games, and it was left to girls to fund the industry, I guarantee games would very quickly be designed with no regard for guys at all, and we'd all be sitting her going "Is the industry stiffling itself only catering to girls?"
Orlix 17th June 2008, 10:41 Quote
Good questions. To answer one, I am 37 years old and love CSS, specially gun games. I also love CoD4. They are short bursts on playing and when you get tired you just quit. No need to wait until your game is at a place where you can save. I also do not mind if the graphics are simple like lot of custom CSS maps or more elaborate as CoD4.
Now I am getting into WOW, well adicted is more like it, and have issues because I cannot play just 30min. If you are in the middle of a quest in a dangerous area, it is more difficult to quit.

PD: the link of the team of female engineers point to the Gigabite production floor with female operators... I hope it is a miss link :)
Mentai 17th June 2008, 10:45 Quote
There are innovations in certain aspects. One game I'm intently following at the moment is Mirror's Edge. It's an FPS platformer I guess, emphasising running and jumping places and hand to hand combat rather than gunplay. It has a fantastic style to it artistically as well. I'm hoping it'll be the portal of this year, it just looks like so much fun to me, even if it's probably very linear.
Great article though, had me thinking.
[USRF]Obiwan 17th June 2008, 11:08 Quote
hey! I'm 37 and i like shooters...

Damn now everyone knows how old i am.. not good, not good at all
Xtrafresh 17th June 2008, 11:32 Quote
You can basically split women into two groups... but i wouldn't do it if i were you

My personal theory is that big studios are the problem. Not their capitalism or managerism, but the number of people working on a game. If one guy works on a game, he'll have had a brainwave and some inspiration that caters to his idea of what makes a good game. If an extra person joins, he will add ideas of his own, and the design will end up somewhere "in the middle". Two dots on a chart can have an average that's still pretty far from the total average, but as you keep adding more dots (people), you inevitably keep moving ever closer to dead centre.

On a sidemote, i was in a gaming clan once that was 30% women, age ranged from 11-83 (!), plus we had 20nations and 6 continents represented (we tried, but could not find anyone from Antartctica :D)).
EvilRusk 17th June 2008, 12:06 Quote
The movie industry is often accused of similar practices of ape-ing existing styles without originality. The financial backers are in the industry to make money, and they want assurances that they will get back more than they put in. They don't necessarily want to take risks with the kinds of production values seen today. It's not like 10 years ago when you had literally hundreds of niche games, as the benchmark for production quality has been set much higher now, and the risks of failure are greater as a result.

However, in the movie industry we see films that buck the trend. Open Water and Blair Witch are two very cheap examples of something that doesn't fit the copy-paste blockbuster mold. Both made a lot of money and both cost very little to produce. Essentially the low cost of development meant it was a viable risk to make something that didn't clone the last blockbuster. I guess we see that with games too, like Audiosurf compared to Crysis for example, which however you dress it up was just another alien shooter.

The strength of internet games (I mean like bejeweled and other flash type games) and things like steam/xbox market place/ps3 mean smaller cheaper download type games will be the source of the next original ideas. The big studios will keep to their rigid recipes, too afraid of failure to vary them, whilst the homebrew developers without massive budgets will try to capture market share through originality.

When the Wii came out I thought Nintendo had lost the plot and were committing financial suicide. The controllers looked like something from a NES, the console was no where near as powerful as the xbox 360/ps3 were expected to be, and I massively overestimated how many people would be worried about looking stupid whilst playing it. Needless to say it is a phenomenal success and drew in huge numbers of people previously alienated by gaming.

Maybe we aren't sitting in a pit of unoriginality, maybe we are at the beginning of a golden age of gaming.
Crunch77 17th June 2008, 13:10 Quote
Nice article.
Sidenote: you mentioned looking for a website for older people. The majority of visitors to www.gamerswithjobs.com are at least adults. A website highly recommended.
Being 31 myself I enjoy almost all genres of games. I really enjoy fps and rpg games. I do abhor the term: twitch game/fps shooter though. It implies that it is just a reflex, rather than something you can train and takes skill.
Timmy_the_tortoise 17th June 2008, 13:11 Quote
ALMOST spilt beer over Mark Rein? What a disappointment, Joe.
Mentai 17th June 2008, 13:52 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Crunch77
Being 31 myself I enjoy almost all genres of games. I really enjoy fps and rpg games. I do abhor the term: twitch game/fps shooter though. It implies that it is just a reflex, rather than something you can train and takes skill.

A twitch FPS is a genre of it's own imo though. I see where you're coming from, but flicking your wrist to hit someone in the head in counter strike is necessary a lot of the time, whereas you wouldn't be doing that as a heavy in TF2 for example. Both games take skill of different kinds, and sometimes I will feel like playing one over the other, depending on how twitchy I feel. But then I'm 19 still :P
cebla 17th June 2008, 14:45 Quote
I personally wouldn't have called counter strike a twitch game. If you play in a clan and do wars there is a lot of strategy and thinking that goes into it. I always thought of twitch games as more like quake or UT where it’s all very fast paced and you never stop running, hoping, jumping or shooting.
proxess 17th June 2008, 14:50 Quote
why aren't there games that allow us to explore?
Crunch77 17th June 2008, 15:18 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by cebla
I personally wouldn't have called counter strike a twitch game. If you play in a clan and do wars there is a lot of strategy and thinking that goes into it. I always thought of twitch games as more like quake or UT where it’s all very fast paced and you never stop running, hoping, jumping or shooting.

I was actually thinking of UT, when I wrote that, which imo requires loads of practice, tactics and quick thinking.
MachineUK 17th June 2008, 15:32 Quote
I agree with cebla on this one.......for me, a twitch game is UT where the game is almost entirely based on reaction and speed of movement(although practise DOES make perfect). Other FPS games......BF, CSS and COD4 are different in that you can plan attacks etc.

I think that FPS will always MAINLY be a male dominated game genre as (IMO) girls/ladies just dont have an interest in these types of games. If your talking about games in general, then although people might disagree, the Wii has bridge some of the HUGE gap that is other types of gamers.

Changing the minds of people is a very hard thing to do, and this is where I feel the games companies have a hard job. Enlightening different potential consumer to a game is almost impossible if that person thinks that computers and/or gaming is nerdy.........(not me by the way, love games.....literally have not exited Mass effect since i bought it!!)........just putting a slant onto this!! ;-)
Timmy_the_tortoise 17th June 2008, 15:32 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by proxess
why aren't there games that allow us to explore?

There are.. There just aren't any based upon exploration.

There's plenty of games which encourage exploration, but none (especially not FPSs) in which the main game mechanic is based entirely on exploration.
MachineUK 17th June 2008, 15:38 Quote
How about the game Myst........anyone remember that? Think it was mainly what you could call exploration.(point and click i suppose)
Timmy_the_tortoise 17th June 2008, 16:03 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by MachineUK
How about the game Myst........anyone remember that? Think it was mainly what you could call exploration.(point and click i suppose)

Not First Person, though.
Timmy_the_tortoise 17th June 2008, 16:03 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Timmy_the_tortoise
Not First Person, though.

Or was it? I'm confused now...
Adnoctum 17th June 2008, 16:18 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by MachineUK
How about the game Myst........anyone remember that? Think it was mainly what you could call exploration.(point and click i suppose)

I have recently completed a multimedia/games design degree.
A part of the course was creating a mod using Hammer/Source engine, creating a story and characters. ALL of my fellow students (future game developers??) went the FPS/horror route, aping HL2 and others like it.
I decided to create a Myst-like mod with puzzles and not a bullet fired nor a drop of blood spilt. It was pretty good, and it stood out like a shining gold bar amongst a lot of grey rocks.

The lesson to be learnt from this is that all too many in the industry either lack imagination or lack the skills to create something different. I think there is a huge market for something different, and it took Nintendo to expose it.
Like many here, I looked at the Wii (Oh, how I laughed at that name!) when announced and said (publicly) it was doomed to be another obscure Japan-only console.
How great would Myst be on the Wii??
MachineUK 17th June 2008, 16:38 Quote
Myst is first person......but not a shooter. :)

Adnoctum, congrats on the originality of your mod!! Look forward to your Myst/Wii incarnation!! ;)

Its a shame that big name gaming producers find it too much of a leap of faith to go ahead with the original and sometimes weird concepts that the minority of the gaming world produce!

Thank god for the people at valve and the like that go out of their way to look for them and open the source engine to the masses.........all hail! :)
CardJoe 17th June 2008, 16:52 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Adnoctum
I have recently completed a multimedia/games design degree.
A part of the course was creating a mod using Hammer/Source engine, creating a story and characters. ALL of my fellow students (future game developers??) went the FPS/horror route, aping HL2 and others like it.
I decided to create a Myst-like mod with puzzles and not a bullet fired nor a drop of blood spilt. It was pretty good, and it stood out like a shining gold bar amongst a lot of grey rocks.

The lesson to be learnt from this is that all too many in the industry either lack imagination or lack the skills to create something different. I think there is a huge market for something different, and it took Nintendo to expose it.
Like many here, I looked at the Wii (Oh, how I laughed at that name!) when announced and said (publicly) it was doomed to be another obscure Japan-only console.
How great would Myst be on the Wii??

Can we see?
dr-strangelove 17th June 2008, 17:23 Quote
Nice article, I think the problem is that games developers take a good game idea (Doom in the case of FPS games) and over the years have dumbed it down so that it's lost most of it's charm. In the rush to make games more 'accessible' or more 'mainstream' they've taken away the things that really made those games special, I mean when was the last time you looked for oddly colored sections of wall in an FPS hoping there was a secret room behind it?

In relation to the whole women gamer thing i wish someone would explain that to my sister since I can hardly tear her away from Morrowind and Oblivion
MachineUK 17th June 2008, 17:34 Quote
Can we see?[/QUOTE]


That would be cool..........
Anakha 17th June 2008, 18:30 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Timmy_the_tortoise
Quote:
Originally Posted by MachineUK
How about the game Myst........anyone remember that? Think it was mainly what you could call exploration.(point and click i suppose)

Not First Person, though.

Myst *WAS* first-person. As was Riven, Myst III, and Myst 5.

Uru wasn't (Though all you needed to do was hit F1 to drop into 1st-person mode).

Personally, I can't wait for "something" to happen with Myst Online: Uru Live. Which is dead (Again), since GameTap killed it earlier this year. That game was awesome, and had new content coming out for it all the time. New ages and the like.
EmJay 17th June 2008, 19:23 Quote
I'm one for world-building games. My current faves are Heroes of Might and Magic 3 (turn-based strategy, 2D, ugliest graphics I have ever seen, but really really well balanced strategy), Age of Empires (RTS, 2.5D, also pretty ugly), and WoW (crafting and economics, I find leveling to be a chore). All these games are really built around the combat, though, with world building on the side - I wish someone would reverse that.

How about an MMO with only a few levels (10 or so), items that wear out and have to be replaced every so often, and crafters make items at least as good as what you can get from fighting? And maybe have a massive world-scale storyline, where you can slowly drive back and defeat the enemy? MMOs don't have to be static. The game might come to an end within a few years, but a well written and guided plot could keep a world full of players very, very entertained for a long time.
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