All About oblivion-girl
4Dec 07As of now I have cancelled my paid subscription to GS. Due to what happened to Jeff Gerstmann, I will no longer be on GS. I will truly miss all of my new friends....but not this site. I willleave my PS3 ID here for any friends to add me. When I purchase a 360 I will update that ID as well. I hope to see allof you on the PS3 an 360. I can not abide by a place that has done injustice to a fellow journalist The report on the front page here was the final straw Article by:Staff.....yea right! I will try and find someone who wants my union as well..goodbye
Definition: Trend (n.) - the general course or prevailing tendency. A leaning towards, a fad, a novelty.
So why do trends exist? Because they are familiar, they enable standards, and they just make life easier. In the case of video games, trends help companies maximize sales while reducing costs because gamers will purchase what they are accustomed to. But easier isn't always better. Here are eleven reasons why:
11. The perfect woman.
She's as pretty as pie and as tough as any of the guys... in fact, she effectively is one of the guys, never mind the next-gen jiggle physics. Why do so many games depict females as flawless-looking, cleavage-flaunting, Uzi-toting killing machines? This bad trend is nothing much new, really, for an industry that has long marginalized women both real and virtual. The games industry isn't alone, of course -- Hollywood perfected this trend years ago. But it still sucks, and proves that this industry has some maturing to do.How about a regular average heroine with small breasts?
Chief offenders: Nariko (Heavenly Sword), Ada Wong (Resident Evil 4), Lara Croft (Tomb Raider Legend)
10. Bloom effects.
Ico for the PS2 was one of the earliest games to use bloom lighting effects, which creates a soft, glowing appearance to in-game lighting. The technique seemed fresh then, but now it feels more like an overused Barbara Walters camera filter than a way to build atmosphere. Bloom effects and blown-out HDR lighting are the lens flare of twenty-first century video games -- developers should employ them sparingly.
Chief offenders: Halo 2, Halo 3, Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, Fable
You are an elite supersoldier, perhaps the last of your kind, genetically perfected in a laboratory to kick ass and...blah, blah, blah, you know the drill. The number of games that feature this cliched sci-fi premise is growing at an alarming rate. We blame Halo, which sold like hotcakes and apparently convinced game developers that genetically enhanced supersoldiers were the new black.
Chief offenders: Halo, Crysis, F.E.A.R., Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots
8. Regular soldiers, for that matter.
Grunts, SWAT teams, special forces -- enough already! Perhaps the glut of military-themed games is an artistic reaction to the real-life Middle Eastern conflict, or maybe it's just lazy developers sticking with a formula that works. But there's no law that says players need to star as a tough-as-nails soldier in every action game. Why not a fresh-faced street cop (ala Resident Evil 2)? Or a normal teenage girl (Silent Hill 3)? Soldiers are great and all, but can't we play as someone else for a change?
Chief offenders: Company of Heroes, Battlefield 2142, Medal of Honor, Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter, Rainbow Six: Vegas
7. Using every button on the controller.
We're all for enhanced interactivity, but that doesn't mean developers should max out all 14+ buttons (counting the d-pad and analog sticks) on the Xbox 360 and PS3 controllers. Here's a hint for developers: less buttons is almost always preferable to more. You may have to sacrifice or consolidate a few game actions (such as the jump, crouch, and use buttons found in nearly every shooter). But the payoff, simplicity, is usually worth the effort. And the proof is in the pudding; Nintendo has already made intriguing -- and immensely profitable -- inroads on this front with the easy-to-use Wii and DS.
Chief offenders: Halo 2/3, F.E.A.R., Splinter Cell: Double Agent
6. Licensed soundtracks.
Popularized by 1999's excellent Tony Hawk's Pro Skater, licensed soundtracks caught on quick and never looked back. Sadly, gamers are left with far fewer titles sporting original (and memorable) soundtracks. Pop quiz: from memory, name one of your favorite original game soundtracks. If Zelda and Mario come to mind, remember these scores were written some 20 years ago... by a programmer, no less! We like pop music as much as anyone, but we miss original game scores more. Without them, The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion and Shadow of the Colossus just wouldn't be the same.
Chief offenders: Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, Burnout series
Activision, EA, and other big publishers may think they're being smart be releasing overhauls of their cash cow franchises every year. But in reality they're signing a deal with the devil. When you make a commitment to release annual sequels, you're saddling your mega-brand game with a perilously short development time and soaring expectations. Over time, battle-fatigued fans may begin to lose interest in the yearly exercises, particularly if each sequel is merely an incremental improvement. Confusion is a major factor, too. Quick: can anyone name the key ways in which Tony Hawk's Project 8 is different from Tony Hawk's American Wasteland? What about Burnout 4 and Burnout 3? Fundamentally, they're all the same.
Chief offenders: TheTony Hawk, Splinter Cell, and Call of Duty series, among many others
4. Rising game prices.
This is probably just the anti-inflationist in me, but I detest paying the new-gen games tax -- $10 more for what is, essentially, the same game experience as last gen. Granted, games aren't the only products plagued with rising prices, but after being raised on the $50 price point, it just seems wrong to pay more. It's like turning the $1 store into the $1.10 store. Publishers: let's see if we can't reverse this progression. And don't even get me started on the ridiculously priced "special edition" games. No, I don't need to spend $130 for a flimsy plastic mask and a behind-the-scenes documentary that shows some programmer coding his life away.
Chief offenders: Pretty much every Xbox 360, Wii, and PS3 game
We appreciate episodic content when it makes sense. And we like digital distribution, too, when it's reasonable. We just don't want to pay for them if publishers keep pricing games at the $50-60 dollar mark... especially for a couple of new songs (::ahem:: Guitar Hero II) or a mandatory online map pack (::ahem:: Halo 2). Just because cell phone companies charge $2 for 30-second ring tones doesn't mean publishers have the all-clear to charge $6.25 for some karaoke version of Higher Ground. More consistent pricing would go a long, long way here.
Chief offenders: Halo 2, Lumines Live, Guitar Hero II (Xbox 360)
2. Gangsta themes.
The ingredients: give players a sandbox world, crowds of innocent bystanders, mini-objectives for when they get tired of robbing the same store for the umpteenth time, and viola! You have yourself a gangsta game. The problem is, most gamers don't find these themes to be subversive anymore, robbing them of their precious edginess. Take away the thrill of the controversial hook and all we're left with is a mediocre third-person shooting/driving game that would've look dated in 2003. If you like these kinds of games, fine; more power to you. But if you're sick of the gangsta game glut, blame Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas and its record-breaking sales.
Chief offenders: 50 Cent: Bulletproof, Saints Row, Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, Scarface
1. World War II themes.
Since the dawn of video games, publishers have released roughly 350 World War II-based titles. I'll spell it out for you: that's 350 WWII-themed games all centered around a conflict that lasted six years, which averages out to about 18 games per year during the modern era of gaming. The Allies won. Can't we be done with it? Or at least bring the number of games down to no more than a half-dozen per year? Sheesh. At least Resistance: Fall of Man played with a fun sci-fi alternate WWII timeline. But so many other games have resorted to reenacting increasingly obscure skirmishes in the WWII European front*. Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare gives us some hope...though it still transgresses on another pet peeve of ours.
Chief offenders: Company of Heroes, Call of Duty 3, Brothers in Arms: Highway to Hell, Medal of Honor: Airborne, countless others
This isn't to say gaming needs to be turned onto its head; far from it. It would just be nice if our culture embraced extra fresh ideas from time to time (nudge, nudge, developers). But to help with that, we as gamers need to "vote with your wallets" as they say. Get to it!
This also is in no way saying that I dislike an of the games mentioned. Many of them I do like highly, except for that Trend Flaw in each listed. So what do you all think?
and call me a bisquit!! ^_^
Hello everyone. Ah...the smell of Turkey is almost upon us. The season is kicking off with loads of new games coming out for the new systems. Anybody for a side dish of Mario Galaxy Surprise? Be sure to pass the Eye of Judgement! Who invited Jericho to the party? Be sure to quote the Assassins Creed before you eat! Let us pray for those in Uncharted Territories! Eat too much and you will have a Mass Effect. Then again...you can always wait for Nights and have a journey of dreams
All said and done...this year will be a gaming feast for everyone! What is on your plates? I know that mine will be over stuffed! Better whip out the Rock Band to soothe my soul!
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