Poll

Do you think that it's fair to dismiss a game for being "short"?

Yes
2 (11.1%)
No
8 (44.4%)
It Depends
8 (44.4%)

Total Members Voted: 18

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Author Topic: "It's Too Short"  (Read 13595 times)

WarpRattler

  • Paid by the word
« Reply #15 on: June 06, 2010, 05:35:10 AM »
Uh, last time I checked, video games aren't about leaving a lasting impression on the player. They're about having fun.

Being repetitive also has little to do with quality. Entire franchises - hell, entire genres - have been crafted around the same repetitive gameplay across numerous entries spanning a decade or more. And repetition isn't magically more acceptable in some genres than others - if the player is honestly having fun, a hundred hours of a repetitive RPG is no less valid than putting a hundred hours into learning a repetitive fighting game. (Just as long as the RPG player doesn't start claiming to be skilled because of this.)

As an addendum to bobman's last statement, though, many cries that a game is too short are unwarranted, and sometimes come from the person making the claim playing the game wrong. As an example, look at professional reviews of home ports of some arcade games, in which the reviewer credit-feeds through the game and then complains that it's too short because they "completed" it in one sitting. (Worse, they'll sometimes also say it's "too easy" because you can just throw credits at it until you reach the end.)

Turtlekid1

  • Tortuga
« Reply #16 on: June 06, 2010, 06:32:03 AM »
So basically, saying a game "is too short" means the game sucked and didn't make a lasting impression on you, like good games do.
Or, on the other hand, it was one of the best games you'd ever played, and you simply would've like to have more of it to enjoy.
"It'll say life is sacred and so is death
but death is life and so we move on"

Glorb

  • Banned
« Reply #17 on: June 06, 2010, 11:09:09 AM »
Portal is used as the quality/quantity yardstick when talking about game length, but I'm in the camp that says that while it's good, it could've used a little extra...something. It feels like a large part of the video game experience was just sort of left out. There's about twenty-some chambers of tutorials that are practically impossible to fail, then a couple hard ones, then all of a sudden you're embroiled in a life-or-death struggle against a computer actively trying to kill you while running around the compound's dilapidated maintainence areas. It's like that big "MISSING REEL" part of Death Proof, except a lot more fluid. Honestly, looking back on the game, people give it a lot more credit than it deserves. It's fun, yes, funny, sometimes, and has a truly unique gameplay mechanic. But a fun gameplay mechanic and couple internet memes do not make up for the fact that it's an anorexic experience, a game with a beginning and an end but no middle.
every

ShadowBrain

  • Ridiculously relevant
« Reply #18 on: June 06, 2010, 11:13:32 AM »
Well, yeah, it's a little overrated, but it still felt like a cohesive, satisfying gaming experience to me.

I'm amazed that Brian didn't note the innuendo in this thread's title.
I am getting a little rusty... but in my defense, most potential jokes would've fallen into the largely passe "that's what she said" territory.
"Mario is your oyster." ~The Chef

WarpRattler

  • Paid by the word
« Reply #19 on: June 06, 2010, 01:13:28 PM »
I would rather have no middle (Portal) than too much middle (a lot of games, particularly some of your really generic JRPGs).

« Reply #20 on: June 06, 2010, 06:35:59 PM »
So basically, saying a game "is too short" means the game sucked and didn't make a lasting impression on you, like good games do.

Bad games can leave a lasting impression too. See Zero Wing (l recall people talking about how bad it was long before it became an internet meme) or Yoshi's Story (ok, terrible noises in this case. EEEEEAAAAAOOOOHHHH! EEEEEAAAAAOOOOHHHH!)
Kinopio is the ultimate video game character! Who else can drive a kart, host parties, play tennis, give good advice and items, and is almost always happy??

Chupperson Weird

  • Not interested.
« Reply #21 on: June 06, 2010, 07:36:23 PM »
Uh, something tells me you don't even know what people talked about Zero Wing for.
That was a joke.

CrossEyed7

  • i can make this whatever i want; you're not my dad
« Reply #22 on: June 07, 2010, 01:22:49 AM »
Yoshi's Story is a very good game.
"Oh man, I wish being a part of a Mario fan community was the most embarrassing thing about my life." - Super-Jesse

« Reply #23 on: June 07, 2010, 02:04:44 AM »
Or, on the other hand, it was one of the best games you'd ever played, and you simply would've like to have more of it to enjoy.
This is very possible, in which case [see the end of my last post].

« Reply #24 on: June 07, 2010, 03:26:40 AM »
My favorite video game of all time can be finished in 3 hours if you skip the cutscenes, so I try not to criticize games for being too short.
Luigison: Question everything!
Me: Why?

« Reply #25 on: June 07, 2010, 04:26:08 AM »
TF2 has cutscenes?

A note on the Portal talk: The main reason Portal is "overrated" is the clash between what people expected and what Valve delivered. As the contents of the Orange Box solidifed people were A) Super-hype for Ep. 2  B) Mega-hype for TF2  C) Mildly curious about Portal. All we expected, and all that was advertised, was that Valve had bought some tiny student group's project (and hired the students) and were throwing this little puzzle game into the bundle as a bonus, and because it was too small a thing to sell normally. No one but no one expected a plot, wonderful humor, an all-time great villain, a Jonathon Coulton song, busting out of the puzzle rooms into the Half-Life universe, and everything else we got.

Glorb's last post spoke of how he thought something felt left out of Portal, but it's quite the opposite. The game delivers far more than you expect going in. He says it has no "middle", but the middle is the period where you start discovering bloody handprints and the hideouts "outside" of the puzzles. The middle is the part before you escape the chambers, but after you begin to wonder about the game's universe instead of thinking of it as A Puzzle Game.

This all would have been ruined, of course, if Valve had acted like a normal company and spoiled the magic with trailers and magazine articles and demos. But they didn't; they played it straight just talking about the portal mechanic and I love love them for it. Of all the realizations I've come to in my life, perhaps the one that has improved my enjoyment of life the most is that MARKETING IS YOUR ENEMY. Over the last couple years of avoiding info, not watching trailers, and not playing demos of anything I was remotely interested in, games, movies, and books are incredibly more potent experiences. You don't have to say, "here's the demo section". You don't already know all the best one-liners. You don't know that Mel Gibson's daughter is going to die within ten minutes.

So, if you want a better life: close your eyes and plug your ears at the movie theater, don't read the blurb on the back of that book, and do not play that demo if you already know you're getting the full game.

This is why you people watching YouTube vids of the end of SMG2 baffle me. You seem the same as people who decide to kill themselves. Spoilers are mind-suicide, the destruction of an experience that can never be recreated. Don't do it. There's so much to live for!

Turtlekid1

  • Tortuga
« Reply #26 on: June 07, 2010, 06:22:50 AM »
The experience can also never be played for you.  Watching gameplay =/= playing it yourself.  The word "experience" implies that you are the one doing the experiencing.  That can only be taken away if you let it be taken away, not because you watched a trailer or played a demo (incidentally, some of us have finite quantities of money to spend on frivolous things like video games, and said trailers and demos help us decide whether we're actually going to want to play said games after we've spent said money on them).
"It'll say life is sacred and so is death
but death is life and so we move on"

« Reply #27 on: June 07, 2010, 08:54:47 AM »
Uh, something tells me you don't even know what people talked about Zero Wing for.

You're right. I don't. I just recall hearing people literally say "This game is bad!" when talking about it.
Kinopio is the ultimate video game character! Who else can drive a kart, host parties, play tennis, give good advice and items, and is almost always happy??

WarpRattler

  • Paid by the word
« Reply #28 on: June 07, 2010, 10:57:18 AM »
What Lizard Dude is saying is why some of the best demos and trailers involve things that aren't in the game or movie at all (though it also means he's missing out in these cases). Demos like that of Audiosurf, Beat Hazard, and many casual games, where you have full access to everything but only a limited amount of plays or time to play, also work well. These games don't have plots to spoil, so their creators can deliver a demo that lets you see how the game itself works without worrying about spoiling anything. Another example would be the Final Fantasy XII demo packed in with Dragon Quest VIII, which let the player experience how the combat worked, and nothing more.

And Turtlekid, as I already said, the complaint that you have limited funds holds no water in this day and age. Even without pirating games, there are more games out there than you could ever hope to possibly play in a single lifetime. Download some freeware games and play those. Instead of worrying about whatever fancy new game is coming out for the PS3 or Wii, get some last-gen games you missed and play those. Buy a few five- and ten-dollar games on Steam (not Eternity's Child) and play those.

Try getting more games than you have time to play like the rest of us, and suddenly you'll never have to worry about having to replay games or whether games are too short!

Glorb

  • Banned
« Reply #29 on: June 07, 2010, 12:39:02 PM »
LD, I respectfully disagree that "the clash between what people expected and what Valve delivered" is the reason I or anyone would think Portal is overrated. People expected a straight-up portal-creating puzzle/adventure game, which they fully delivered. They didn't expect it would also have a slowly unraveling, cryptic story, which it delivered in spades and which cemented the game's reputation.

I stand by my assertion that the game is lacking a big chunk of what it needs to be a good game, and not just a cool series of puzzles packaged with a collection of funny voice clips and premade internet memes. From a purely gameplay standpoint: It has a ramp-up, but then throws you into an endgame and final boss fight. It gives you no breathing room to truly explore the possibilities of the portal mechanic outside of "omg, i can fall forever!!" since, as soon as the game removes your training wheels, you're 90% done and all that's left are a couple test chambers, the facility's abandoned backrooms, and the end.

People are loath to criticize Portal because it is truly an excellent game. People just like to project their own dream game onto their memories of it, something aided by the game's short length and legitimately funny moments. It's just like how Half-Life is a good game, but not the masterpiece of postmodern storytelling and drama people play it up as.
every

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