Wassup!? Wassup!? Remember how I expressed concern in the last article I wrote regarding Mass Effect Andromeda. How I said how games are stupidly leaning towards graphics while disregarding or even worse, simplifying the gameplay? Well I’ve found a great example for of what exactly what I’m talking about.
I found really cool game called Strafe. Now if you’re a fan of Doom or Quake games, new ones were the old ones regardless, it is very likely that you will absolutely fall in love with this one. Before I say anything, here’s a video of this game showing you what it’s all about in this 20 minute footage. Now you’re not required to watch the whole 20 minutes of gameplay to understand what it’s about, feel free to skip and cut parts and just look for the gist of it. Here it is:
Now take a look at this game footage and try to compare it with Andromeda. No one’s talking about graphics and how fancy they are. No one’s telling you to come back once you have a 4K resolution display. This is not meant to be watched, it’s meant to be played. This is a video game. The graphics are pixelated yet incredibly charming, and what’s more important no one gives a shit, because guess what, we’re here to play not to appreciate how advanced and good-looking your technology is. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love good graphics in video games, but putting graphics OVER gameplay should never be a priority for any developer.
This game doesn’t even have set the level design. It’s procedurally generated. It’s a common feature for many rogue like games. If you’re unfamiliar with the terms, rogue like basically means that each time you die in a game, you will have to started all over again. It gets better. Not only will you have start over but the world itself will change. Nothing will ever be the same twice (or at least that’s what many developers are aiming for) so you will have a fresh, new and unique experience each time you play this game. And while I’m quite aware that this is not everyone’s “cup of tea” as my friend would say it, I’m pretty sure that the majority of gamers will love this game. Especially the ones that grew up playing first-person shooters on their computers more than 25 years ago.
The thing that bothers me the most is that I believe that video games as we know them and as we love them are starting to die off. While I believe the change is a natural way things I also think that we should always strive for improvement and advancement rather than alienation. Because this is what it is. If we allow companies to sell games that look pretty and do nothing beside that, eventually will end up interactive movies, and while absolutely love games like Heavy Rain that is pretty much an interactive movie, I would not like to see every other videogame being like that.
Think about it next time you’re looking for a new game to play. Think about whether you want to actually actively spend your time playing something or would you simply prefer to watch or read it. There are plenty of books, there are plenty of movies, maybe should pick one of those instead? Please, don’t alienate gaming, let it be what it is, let it be was always meant to be.