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Re: Devil's advocate? I guess? *lengthy*
Date: 5/17/13 2:32 pm
In Response To: Re: Devil's advocate? I guess? *lengthy* (Postmortem)

: I'm cool on all your other points (except I still don't think the Flood would
: be as scary without more buildup, and it may discourage players who think
: the game will be survival horror throughout), I trust your vision for its
: execution, rather than my interpretation of your descriptions. :P But I
: feel the need to stop and comment on your remark below.

: I agree. To get the full experience, the intended emotional journey, all the
: games need to be played in order. Hell, at this point if you want the full
: experience, you pretty much need to read the books as well. I'm the sort
: of person who goes out of my way to experience things as they were
: intended to be experience. Can't access Star Trek IV? Well I'm not going
: to jump ahead to Star Trek V, I'll wait to get my hands on all the films
: so I can watch them straight through (thanks Dave). I read all my books in
: order, and try to play all my games in order.
: But that's the thing, with the format of our medium, sometimes it's
: ridiculously hard to go back and find an old game to play through unless
: it was one of the most popular ones of its time. Anniversary solved this
: issue for Halo players, but if you think about it, because you can't pick
: up Halo 2 just browsing through stores (you have to intentionally seek it
: out), Halo 2 at this point is probably the most underplayed Halo game. And
: what's going to happen when we jump to a new console, and we hit that
: point where 360 games stop being sold in stores?

: My point is this: Yes, people should be playing through in order, as they
: should with all media. But it belies a misunderstanding of the medium to
: assume that games' formats are set up in a way that supports or encourages
: this. In order for a game to sell, and for a franchise to remain
: successful, it needs to live off of the sales of the latest game in its
: series. And if you're streamlining the experience with the intention of
: catering to old players, new players are going to play it, get frustrated,
: put the controller down, and go out and tell their friends not to buy it
: either.

: Game marketing is tailored to sell the latest and greatest, and our
: understanding is that, yes we may be missing out on some story by skipping
: earlier installments, but we're also doing ourselves a favor by skipping
: over the games with less developed mechanics and diving right into the
: more polished experiences that have been tested from year to year. For
: people who only want gameplay (but maybe would really enjoy the story if
: they had started from the beginning), they'll only be set on the latest
: and greatest.

Ah, but I think some of the earlier entries had the more developed and polished experiences. :)

: It's really easy to slip into the mindset of designing an experience that
: builds off of what came before... and stop focusing on everything else.
: But it's incredibly important to keep all of your audience in mind. All of
: the people that will be paying you for the game, so you can continue
: making them. You can't cater to a niche market for a full game, not
: without incredible risk. Now maybe Halo is a game that's worth taking that
: risk on... but I personally, as a fan of Halo, find it dismaying to think
: that someone who has never played Halo before may pick up this theoretical
: game for the first time, find it frustrating and hard to understand, stop
: playing, and never try Halo again in their lives. Think of what they'll be
: missing out on, and how catering to them just a little bit more would
: better open up the door to an exploration of past games.

Just like with the people who watch Return of the King or play Mass Effect 3 and tell me they didn't understand what was happening and thought it was poor.... My response would be, "Well, obviously..."

If you don't have the foresight to give a sequel or a third part, or even a fifth part, some special treatment and patience because you didn't try earlier parts... that's probably the person's fault and not the responsibility of the story/movie/game to fix. I've tried a few sequels/spinoffs that got me interested in what came before because of my confusion and ignorance. It gives you the passion to go search through the library to discover the real history behind it all! This has been the case with Star Trek lately for me.

But I also try a lot of demos on Live and get so bored so quickly with 90% of them because they bog the game down hand-holding me through every aspect of the game and its story. I want a game to keep my brain and controller busy, gosh darn it! :)

I could totally see including some sort of prologue video or a training level you can access from the main menu, but I definitely wouldn't some people who aren't interested in trying something from its actual start to bring down the real campaign for everyone else. (Also, I can play every Halo game on the 360, so I don't see why it would be hard or expensive to go find the originals on eBay.)

If you try to cater your sequel to make sure every single person is happy, even the people who have never played Halo or an FPS before, I think you'll end up making a game that, paradoxically, no one likes, hah...

You're probably right about everything you're saying, of course. I'm just not interested in making the game that will make the most money, but making the best game that game can be, and I have faith that if you reach for that, it will pay off in the long run. And these opinions are why I live in a mansion and sip on champagne every night, of course.

: You can't be sure yours would be unique if you're not aware of what you're
: getting closer/further away from.
: You should at least play Starcraft II if you ever find the time for it. It
: stands really well on its own, it's ridiculously fun to play for an RTS,
: and I think you'd find yourself surprised by how interesting the fiction
: is. There's a lot, especially with the Zerg, that I think Halo creators
: need to be aware of.

Great, more games I'm supposed to play! :P

I think there are heaps of concepts in Halo that rub elbows with vast amounts of science fiction... and I think that's okay. In fact, I think its awesome if authors borrow ideas and go off and tell their own version. I know Halo has allowed me to retrace its roots back to some great science fiction novels.

I think stories of all kinds always end up similar to other stories, especially when you're looking for shared traits, because as humans who observe and catalog everything we experience, even when we don't mean to, it's just nigh impossible not to borrow elements from something, somewhere.

And I think even if a root idea is intentionally taken from somewhere, different people will spin similar nuggets into unique stories. No two people will write the same tale, even if given the same prompt. There's lots of great quotes by famous authors about this... I was trying to pick one, but there's just too many!

So yeah, what I've always found important is that you don't get caught up worrying about your own ideas being too similar to somebody else's or wasting time purposefully differentiating yourself from other works because its simply unnecessary. There's no way you're going to create the same end product ---unless you're copying of course.

343i needs to find the story Halo is already telling, not try to artificially differentiate it from or inject it with some other game or story.

And I did try Dead Space once.... I made it down a hallway, screamed, and turned it off. :D

Messages In This Thread

Shield and Sword: The GraveyardLeviathan5/15/13 9:11 pm
     This is how it should be.Nikko B2015/15/13 9:24 pm
           TrueZackDark5/15/13 9:43 pm
                 Very true.robofin1175/16/13 12:50 am
     Giggity *NM*ZackDark5/15/13 9:41 pm
     Devil's advocate? I guess? *lengthy*Postmortem5/16/13 10:23 pm
           ^Thumbs up, would read again. *NM*ZackDark5/16/13 11:35 pm
           Re: Devil's advocate? I guess? *lengthy*General Vagueness5/17/13 10:16 am
           Re: Devil's advocate? I guess? *lengthy*Leviathan5/17/13 12:19 pm
                 Re: Devil's advocate? I guess? *lengthy*Postmortem5/17/13 12:55 pm
                       Re: Devil's advocate? I guess? *lengthy*Leviathan5/17/13 2:32 pm
                             Re: Devil's advocate? I guess? *lengthy*breitzen5/17/13 6:17 pm
                                   Re: Devil's advocate? I guess? *lengthy*Postmortem5/17/13 6:29 pm
                                         Re: Devil's advocate? I guess? *lengthy*Leviathan5/17/13 6:32 pm
                                         Re: Devil's advocate? I guess? *lengthy*breitzen5/17/13 7:34 pm
                             Re: Devil's advocate? I guess? *lengthy*Mr Daax5/17/13 7:32 pm
                                   Re: Devil's advocate? I guess? *lengthy*Leviathan5/17/13 7:34 pm
                                   Re: Devil's advocate? I guess? *lengthy*breitzen5/17/13 7:40 pm
                             Re: Devil's advocate? I guess? *lengthy*General Vagueness5/18/13 11:54 pm
                       Re: Devil's advocate? I guess? *lengthy*General Vagueness5/18/13 11:28 pm
                 THIS partMacGyver105/17/13 1:37 pm
                       Re: THIS partTDSpiral5/17/13 9:54 pm
     Re: Shield and Sword: The GraveyardGeneral Vagueness5/16/13 10:25 pm
           Re: Shield and Sword: The GraveyardPostmortem5/16/13 10:34 pm
                 Re: Shield and Sword: The GraveyardGeneral Vagueness5/16/13 10:59 pm
                       Re: Shield and Sword: The GraveyardPostmortem5/16/13 11:17 pm
                             Re: Shield and Sword: The GraveyardGeneral Vagueness5/17/13 10:19 am
                                   Re: Shield and Sword: The GraveyardLeviathan5/17/13 11:32 am
           Re: Shield and Sword: The Graveyardscarab5/17/13 8:54 pm
     Re: Shield and Sword: The GraveyardGeneral Vagueness5/16/13 10:31 pm
           Nay!ZackDark5/16/13 11:39 pm

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