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Author Topic: "A WINNER IS YOU!", AKA Weegee's Required Reading #1  (Read 6142 times)

« on: February 04, 2011, 03:38:22 AM »
Why is it that so many video games deny the player recognition for beating them? Are developers really too lazy to implement a post-game mode or accolade to acknowledge one's completion of a game, or do they assume players would prefer to fight its final boss over and over and over and over and over ad infinitum? To bring this to its logical extreme, a game that doesn't save after being beaten might as well not save at all.

Thoughts?
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WarpRattler

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« Reply #1 on: February 04, 2011, 05:32:00 AM »
I understand where this is coming from, but...honestly, I can't think of many games I've played even semi-recently that suffer from it.

There's, uh...Symphony of the Night, and that was the PSP version by way of The Dracula X Chronicles, so when you reach the true end you unlock more stuff. Most of the post-SotN Castlevania games do something along those lines, and on the other side of that coin, Metroid games since at least Super (I haven't played M2) mark a completed save file.

Most arcade shmups and ports of such list your stage completion on the scoreboard as "ALL" or some variation thereof if you finish the game, and shmups developed for home consoles to start usually have some sort of unlockables given for game completion in addition to that (usually more game modes, or things like Gradius V's edit mode).

The RPGs I've been playing all mark for completion and/or have New Game Plus-type modes.

Thinking about it, all of these are Japanese games. Aside from VVVVVV and Super Meat Boy, which do track a completed game, the only western games I've really been playing recently are strategy games like Civilization IV and AI War, both of which are the sort of game where tracking completion would be silly (and AI War has achievements anyway).

Turtlekid1

  • Tortuga
« Reply #2 on: February 04, 2011, 08:16:57 AM »
I haven't really played any games that don't recognize completion lately, either.  Uncharted 2 has trophies, and Kindgom Hearts: Re:coded has trophies and a save file thing.  Minecraft can't really be completed in the first place.
"It'll say life is sacred and so is death
but death is life and so we move on"

« Reply #3 on: February 04, 2011, 08:31:38 AM »
Well first, this "recogniztion" exists now on 100% of the games for 360 and PS3 because of achievements. And second, I agree with WarpWrattler and Turtlekid1 that this guy is kind of living in the past. Have you run into this problem in anything recently, WeeGee?

Quote
To bring this to its logical extreme, a game that doesn't save after being beaten might as well not save at all.
^ This is retarded though. Because I don't treasure save files as though they were priceless jewels like you OCD kids do.

WarpRattler

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« Reply #4 on: February 04, 2011, 11:48:23 AM »
But what if your achievements got wiped?

I don't exactly treasure my save files unless I've put literally weeks worth of hours into the game (doesn't happen), or I've unlocked or cleared something that required me to go through an effort I really don't want to deal with again.

That said, I've already had DJ Max Portable 3 wipe my data once, and if it does it again I'm throwing the UMD at a wall.

Kimimaru

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« Reply #5 on: February 04, 2011, 01:20:16 PM »
I don't really care whether a game indicates if you beat it or not. "Beating" the game holds a different meaning for every player. Some players feel that they have only truly completed the game once they did everything and obtained 100% (me in most cases), while others think that completing the main quest is enough. Yes, it's nice to know if the game has been beaten on a certain file, but if you open up a friend's file and see that he/she has like every item, etc, I think it's safe to assume that your friend beat the game on that file.
The Mario series is the best! It has every genre in video games but RTS'! It also has a plumber who does different roles, a princess, and a lot of odd creatures who don't seem to poop!

« Reply #6 on: February 04, 2011, 05:12:15 PM »
Have you run into this problem in anything recently, WeeGee?

I agree that it's far more prevalent in older games, but the issue still remains in current-gen titles like LoZ:TP and M&L:BIS.

Come to think of it, most of the Mario RPG series is notorious for cheating players out of a complete game.

SMRPG - Freezes at "THE END" like most SNES games do.
PM - Eternally loops the fireworks sequence until the console is reset. I remember leaving that game on for six hours in hopes of eventually being given a chance to save and retain my completion.
M&L:SS - Resets without saving after credits. Beanbean Castle Town remains ruined and deserted forever. Whoever decided not to have the town restored after Bowletta is defeated should die in a fire.
PM:TTYD - This is Mario's greatest role-playing adventure for many reasons, including the fact that it rewards the player to a permanent resolution. All RPGs should do it like this.
M&L:PiT - As a proverbial slap in the face, the player is forced to manually undo their completion of the game in order to continue playing it. One of the rare instances in which I wanted Miyamoto to go **** himself.
SPM - Follows in the noble footsteps of TTYD by keeping the final boss dead. This bodes well for PM3DS.
M&L:BIS - Standard reset-without-save ending.
YYur  waYur n beYur you Yur plusYur instYur an Yur Yur whaYur

ShadowBrain

  • Ridiculously relevant
« Reply #7 on: February 04, 2011, 07:29:37 PM »
Yeah, Nintendo seems to have a track record of that in quite a few of their older games, but I'd agree that--at least in my experience--it's not a prevalent enough issue anymore to merit an article.
"Mario is your oyster." ~The Chef

« Reply #8 on: February 04, 2011, 07:59:39 PM »
I don't think most games going back to the last save point before the boss is neccesarily a bad thing. If I've spent any amount of time trying to get to the final battle (mostly in RPG games), then I hope to do that battle again.

I do like that some recent games allow you to save after the final boss (like PM2 and SPM are good examples). I wish more games would take advantage of that function, but it's not a huge issue.
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??

Kimimaru

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« Reply #9 on: February 04, 2011, 08:07:47 PM »
M&L:PiT - As a proverbial slap in the face, the player is forced to manually undo their completion of the game in order to continue playing it. One of the rare instances in which I wanted Miyamoto to go **** himself.

Are you referring to when Stuffwell tells you that he can activate some time mechanic to bring you back to before some of the final events happened? If so, I never found a problem with that; you're able to go back and fight the last boss right away anyway.
The Mario series is the best! It has every genre in video games but RTS'! It also has a plumber who does different roles, a princess, and a lot of odd creatures who don't seem to poop!

« Reply #10 on: February 04, 2011, 08:17:05 PM »
One of the worst offenders I've played so far is Final Fantasy: The 4 Heroes of Light. Once you reach the final boss, Chaos, the entire world is in an endless state of despair. Day and night are replaced by an ominous purple twilight, and most NPCs speak of nothing but the imminent apocalypse. Beating Chaos returns the world to balance... until you're forced to reset the game. Then everything goes right back to doomsday mode. Developers,



Are you referring to when Stuffwell tells you that he can activate some time mechanic to bring you back to before some of the final events happened? If so, I never found a problem with that; you're able to go back and fight the last boss right away anyway.

That's exactly my point; THE FINAL BOSS SHOULD BE GONE FOREVER AFTER YOU KILL IT. If you want a rematch, start a new file as you would to re-fight any other boss.
YYur  waYur n beYur you Yur plusYur instYur an Yur Yur whaYur

Black Mage

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« Reply #11 on: February 04, 2011, 08:30:40 PM »
Maybe some warning that we are going to post spoilers without using, I don't know, spoiler tags would be nice in the future.

I was planning on playing 4 Heroes of Light at some point.
« Last Edit: February 04, 2011, 08:38:34 PM by Black Mage »

« Reply #12 on: February 04, 2011, 08:55:45 PM »
Well, I learned one thing today.

Miyamoto is apparently the head of Alpha Dream.
As a game that requires six friends, an HDTV, and skill, I can see why the majority of TMK is going to hate on it hard.

« Reply #13 on: February 04, 2011, 09:13:38 PM »
He is?! That's awesome!!

This sorta makes me think of another point about games in recent years: I don't think the difficulty of games has changed all that much, but rather the information we recieve about them. You can read about secrets and tricks to a game you're thinking about buying.
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??

Turtlekid1

  • Tortuga
« Reply #14 on: February 04, 2011, 10:17:40 PM »
Remember when I mentioned Kingdom Hearts: Re:coded?  One great thing about that game is that you can explore worlds after you've beaten them, or replay the episode and relive whichever part(s) of the story you like.  More games need mission replay.
"It'll say life is sacred and so is death
but death is life and so we move on"

WarpRattler

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« Reply #15 on: February 05, 2011, 03:59:56 AM »
I don't think the difficulty of games has changed all that much, but rather the information we recieve about them. You can read about secrets and tricks to a game you're thinking about buying.
Except the difficulty of games has changed. All kinds of things are done nowadays that make games easier, or worse, actively remove gameplay from the realm of player skill. "RPG elements," AKA grindable level systems and stat-based combat, are the biggest offenders and are prevalent in many genres today. Some other examples are simple control modes in fighting games, looser timing windows in rhythm games, and auto-aim and regenerating healthbars in first-person shooters (though, to be fair, auto-aim and its kin are all but necessary for console FPS to work with existing controllers).

Yes, mechanic spoilers can make games easier, sometimes pathetically so. We've had that discussion before. But the Internet didn't magically make games easier.

ShadowBrain

  • Ridiculously relevant
« Reply #16 on: February 05, 2011, 09:19:41 AM »
Put simply, I think it's a combination of three factors:

1) Ease of accessibility to game help.
2) Longtime gamers becoming better at games in general.
3) Features both minor and major that have been summarily implemented over time to make games more accessible.
"Mario is your oyster." ~The Chef

WarpRattler

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« Reply #17 on: February 05, 2011, 11:01:42 AM »
Not everyone uses walkthroughs and guides*.
Longtime gamers getting better at games might matter if games were being developed with that in mind. How many recent retail games actually were?

*By which I mean, for example, going to GameFAQs to find how to solve every puzzle in the cloisters and how to unlock everyone's secret equipment and the bonus aeons in Final Fantasy X. I don't mean, for example, looking up a fighting game character's move inputs, especially when that stuff's usually accessible in-game nowadays.

Kimimaru

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« Reply #18 on: February 05, 2011, 04:36:46 PM »
Longtime gamers getting better at games might matter if games were being developed with that in mind. How many recent retail games actually were?

This actually does matter; I used to have trouble in Illusion of Gaia for SNES back in the day, but I played it a few months ago for the first time in years and easily beat it. This is not the only game I have experienced this with; I can beat Super Mario Bros. 3, Megaman X, and various other games more easily than I was able to years ago, even if I haven't played them for a while.

Most older games were difficult because of bad controls and collision detection. That does not mean that newer games aren't hard, though; many offer higher difficulty modes.
The Mario series is the best! It has every genre in video games but RTS'! It also has a plumber who does different roles, a princess, and a lot of odd creatures who don't seem to poop!

« Reply #19 on: February 05, 2011, 05:11:56 PM »
Keep in mind that you probably weren't as good at video games ten years ago as you are today.
YYur  waYur n beYur you Yur plusYur instYur an Yur Yur whaYur

Kimimaru

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« Reply #20 on: February 05, 2011, 05:37:30 PM »
That is exactly my point. Games aren't necessarily getting easier; I'm just getting better.
The Mario series is the best! It has every genre in video games but RTS'! It also has a plumber who does different roles, a princess, and a lot of odd creatures who don't seem to poop!

WarpRattler

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« Reply #21 on: February 06, 2011, 03:49:29 AM »
Kimimaru, that didn't answer my question or disprove my point.

Of course longterm gamers getting better helps with older games, but I'm talking about newer stuff. Again, the whole "longterm games getting better" thing doesn't matter for newer games, because a lot of newer games are designed to be easier than older games in the first place. (Play Puyo Pop Fever or any of the other modern Puyo Puyo games and compare to Puyo Puyo Tsuu, or compare DanceDanceRevolution on PS3 to a lot of the DDR games that came before it. Look at Mario Kart Wii versus previous entries, or at modern Tetris versus Tetris from fifteen years ago.) If newer games were made to be as difficult as older games (or more difficult) and longtime players could get through them with ease, there'd be a point there, but for the most part games aren't being made that way.

"Most" older games weren't difficult because of bad controls or poor collision detection; it was mainly just the bad ones that were like that. Plenty of games were difficult without having those problems. They still don't matter because we're talking about newer games, not older ones.

Newer games might have difficulty settings, but again, that still doesn't matter for this argument if the high-end difficulty setting is still lower than the difficulty of older games.

ShadowBrain

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« Reply #22 on: February 06, 2011, 01:51:44 PM »
I don't get it, are we debating about whether or not games have collectively gotten easier, or complaining that they have?
"Mario is your oyster." ~The Chef

Turtlekid1

  • Tortuga
« Reply #23 on: February 06, 2011, 02:27:26 PM »
Both, depending on which post you're reading.
"It'll say life is sacred and so is death
but death is life and so we move on"

Kimimaru

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« Reply #24 on: February 06, 2011, 05:34:53 PM »
Look at Mario Kart Wii versus previous entries

I found the entire Mario Kart series to have roughly the same difficulty.

"Most" older games weren't difficult because of bad controls or poor collision detection; it was mainly just the bad ones that were like that. Plenty of games were difficult without having those problems. They still don't matter because we're talking about newer games, not older ones.

Super Mario Kart was a good game, but the steering was absolutely terrible on that. The original NES Megaman series (at least the first few) wasn't really hard, but unfair instead. Remember the Wall Shooter boss in Megaman 2? You needed to use EXACTLY all of your Crash Bombs to defeat them, and that's if you don't destroy the barriers first and die after. Nothing else hurts them, and if you run out of Crash Bombs you're out of luck because there are barely any weapon refills at the checkpoint you go back to after you die.

That is an example of unfair, not difficult gameplay.

As for your argument about regenerating health in FPS games, that's made so that players don't always have to go looking for health in multiplayer. Health packs would be useless anyway since you die so quickly. I do think, however, that regenerating health should not be in the single player modes.

Except the difficulty of games has changed. All kinds of things are done nowadays that make games easier, or worse, actively remove gameplay from the realm of player skill. "RPG elements," AKA grindable level systems and stat-based combat, are the biggest offenders and are prevalent in many genres today.
 
Yes, mechanic spoilers can make games easier, sometimes pathetically so. We've had that discussion before. But the Internet didn't magically make games easier.

What I think most developers are doing is adding more gameplay features. This leads the games to become easier over time since you have so many more options, unlike older games. If older games weren't as limited as newer games, they'd have the same exact difficulty level. You also have to take a look at a game like Super Mario World. You're equipped with two of the best power-ups in Mario history: Yoshi and the Super Cape. I haven't seen a recent game that allows you to skip through entire levels (excluding warps) as effortlessly as you can in Super Mario World.

There are, however, newer games designed to be difficult. The entire Ninja Gaiden series is difficult, from NES to present; Demon Souls is another tough game to beat.

My stance on this issue remains that, although newer games may bring in features that make them easier, they still have the same difficulty levels as older games in most cases. I can beat New Super Mario Bros. Wii just as easily as Super Mario Bros. 3 or Super Mario World.
The Mario series is the best! It has every genre in video games but RTS'! It also has a plumber who does different roles, a princess, and a lot of odd creatures who don't seem to poop!

« Reply #25 on: February 06, 2011, 09:18:51 PM »
Quote
PM:TTYD - This is Mario's greatest role-playing adventure for many reasons, including the fact that it rewards the player to a permanent resolution. All RPGs should do it like this.

No!  Thanks to that, I can't re-experience the final battle and ending without going through the whole bloody game again.  Would Super Mario World really be better off if it saved at the ending?  You'd be forced to go through the whole game if you just felt like fighting Bowser again!

« Reply #26 on: February 06, 2011, 09:50:47 PM »
Platformers are a different case because they have so little story to speak of.

If you're going to complain about being unable to re-experience TTYD's final battle, shouldn't you be complaining that every boss can't be fought again? Unless they implemented a rematch in a logical way (i.e. you somehow deliberately resurrect her for a grudge match), making the final boss re-fightable would only cheapen the exerience.
YYur  waYur n beYur you Yur plusYur instYur an Yur Yur whaYur

WarpRattler

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« Reply #27 on: February 07, 2011, 01:57:55 AM »
Kimimaru, I'll agree that that Mega Man 2 boss was poorly-designed...but don't you come back with full ammo if you die?

As for regenerating health, there are more than enough great multiplayer first-person shooters that lack regenerating health to make a case for it being unnecessary.

Some features can make games less difficult, yes, and a lot of games end up having those features and being easier as a result. Legitimate difficult games like Ninja Gaiden, Demon's Souls, and Platinum Games' releases are exceptions, not the norm.

Being able to beat new games as easily as older ones only means that at most they've got an even difficulty level, which means the new games aren't harder, which was my point. (Though SMB3 and SMW are bad examples because they're ****-easy anyway.)

Kimimaru

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« Reply #28 on: February 07, 2011, 04:03:02 AM »
You don't come back with full ammo, unfortunately.

I see where you're coming from, but what is the fine line between "old" and "new"?
The Mario series is the best! It has every genre in video games but RTS'! It also has a plumber who does different roles, a princess, and a lot of odd creatures who don't seem to poop!

WarpRattler

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« Reply #29 on: February 07, 2011, 05:55:26 AM »
For the sake of this argument I'd describe "new" as anything on Xbox 360, Wii, PS3, DS, or PSP, as well as PC games that have come out since the 360 came out (November 2005, I believe). I'm also primarily considering standard retail releases, not indie titles and freeware; this is mainly to exclude artsy non-games and generic RPGs, platformers, shmups, and Breakout clones made by ten-year-olds finding game creation software for the first time. It still counts licensed titles and obscure Japan-only visual novels, however.

You wouldn't want to count last-gen as "new," anyway - the massive number of JRPGs that were released on the PS2 and GBA would drag your argument into the street, shoot it dead, and leave the corpse hanging from a streetlight.

« Reply #30 on: February 12, 2011, 10:38:34 PM »

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