Gameplay vs. Graphics: The Eternal Struggle
I posted this over on MMORPG.com, but I figure it’s just as appropriate to post here:
Included in this article are various corporate talking heads spewing their usual excuses for shallow games that appeal only to WoW kiddies:
- “The market demands better graphics, so that’s what we’re going to give them.”
- “Getting stuck and frustrated is no fun; we make sure the player always knows what to do in order to progress in the story.”
- “Even if the game is less complex, the graphics make up for it.”
On the plus side, they get Richard Garriott to talk about his next big project! — “It’s basically a game in which you’re living out your life. And you can do anything you want.”
I wish we had more of this sort of cutting-edge debate over here on MMORPG.com, instead of just rehashes of the same old topics over and over. Didn’t want to post the whole article for copyright reasons, but it’s well worth reading to get a good sense of how important and timely this new issue of trading solid gameplay and real challenge for snazzy graphics and hand-holding is. This is something we’ve got to talk about now, before computer gaming is changed forever.
I’ve played most of the newer games they mention, and while they’re fun enough, I guess, they just don’t offer the kind of real experience and involvement that older games did, and if this kind of focus on pandering to the lowest common denominator and simplifying gameplay with built-in cheats and published cluebooks continues, eventually, real games that have depth to them will just vanish or be reduced to niche markets.
Again — this is a great article, and I recommend that anyone on MMORPG.com who is passionate about how modern games are being dumbed down to appeal to more consumers read it. It really places the issue into the proper perspective.
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