Most big budget games “forget about the gameplay,” says indie dev

IncGamers: Innovation only happening in the indie space?

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matgrowcott1910d ago (Edited 1910d ago )

Asides from a few gems, the indie world is generally equally as guilty as this. Too many developers focus too much on a single "innovative" feature and forget that a single feature isn't enough to make a game fun.

For that reason, I'm actually a little tired of indie devs professing as if they know everything about saving the industry. Not necessarily in this case - he was agreeing with somebody else and he was approached directly about this subject - but so many of these small developers seem to want to differentiate themselves from the games coming out from big publishers that sometimes they forget to look at problems in their own games and in the games coming from their peers.

iamironman1910d ago

While I agree with your second point, I don't agree with the first.

"a single "innovative" feature" isn't enough to make a game fun.

I think it is.

Angry Birds, Cut the Rope and Braid are good examples.

Yes, this being N4G, and me mentioning iOS game, is going to attract some negative attention. But it's true, those are good games that achieve exactly what they set out to do and do so with a single core feature.

Freakazoid20121910d ago

He didnt say every game was that way, just that most are. Out of how many thousands of games on iOS are actually good? You named 3 and there should be more but not enough to say that he is wrong that the majority hasn't.

One I can think of on PC is Portal but for that one game I can name off 10 bad ones.

Alos881910d ago

There is nothing innovative about Angry Birds.

iamironman1910d ago

the point is nothing to do with whether iOS games are good. the point is that a single feature can make a good game.

sure, there are more made examples than good, but that's true with all mediums and game types.

there are more bad songs than good. more bad movies than good. more bad games than good.

matgrowcott1910d ago (Edited 1910d ago )


But I'd say that Angry Birds, Cut the Rope and Braid all have fantastic level design. It's not the single feature that makes the game fun, but the way in which it is implemented, the way that it is supported by graphics and general design.

There are very few indie games that have come out in the last couple of years that haven't had a hook, something that I suppose you could call innovation. In almost all cases, if a game has been successful it has been because the basic gameplay has been perfected and then built on using the single feature that sets them apart from the crowd.

Velocity is a good example of how I feel this hook is best done. Great gameplay that could have worked with or without the teleportation. It doesn't feel tacked on though, almost like it's always been a staple of the genre.

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Summons751910d ago

Really? Darksiders, Metal Gear, Uncharted, halo, Souls series, Bioshock, Farcry, Battlefield, Final Fantasy...they all say Hi

iamironman1910d ago

i love uncharted, but it's not the best example as far as gameplay is concerned.

darksiders isn't a great example, either. good game but it borrows gameplay elements from lots of other games and puts them in one place.

Summons751910d ago

So? It dosen't mean it's not great gameplay. It's smooth and fluid and fun that's all that matters. Games have been borrowing ideas from other games for decades but that dosen't make them any less fun.

Moncole1910d ago

He said "Most big budget games" not "All big budget games"

abzdine1910d ago

passionate people make innovative games. Others who only see us as money bags only think of screwing customers by releasing games as fast as possible and without taking time of thinking about new ideas and concepts.

3-4-51910d ago

Everybody forgot about the least 90% of dev's.

It's the one things a lot of Japanese and Nintendo games have really mastered over the years. Like Dragon Quest for example. where as Final Fantasy has kind of abandoned the basics and keep trying/ adding complex battle systems that drive people away from what was once a GREAT franchise.

Here are somethings I look at in games.

1.) Controls has to control very smoothly. This has to be top notch.

2.) Music - it's more important than people think. It creates the memories that last with you 10+ years. GO play any of your old favorite games without the music ? Probably not half as good right ?

3.) Level design - It's become way to complex and complicated. Dev's need to go and look at Super Mario 64 and how much QUALITY content they packed into each world/painting , while also giving us variety.

The world didn't have to be bigger than that, and every inch of them usually had some personality.

4.) Simplify the combat itself, but then give us enough options and customization to keep it fresh. We don't need 30+ attack and spells/skills.

5.) Customization - Embrace it Dev's....and we will love you for it, by giving you our money.

6.) Be Creative - it seems like Dev's all want to " do a version of ___________ game " ....
- Create your own unique IP. But make it stand out without being annoying. Which brings me to my next point.

7.) STOP IT with the annoying characters. Don't you comprehend that we hate this ? Don't you realize it keeps you from selling more games and thus you make less money ?

Why would you want to annoy the people who's money you rely upon to stay in business ? It's freakin stupid !

STOP IT NOW ! We've had enough !

8.) Stop focusing on just 1-2 features. Master the basics and then give us as many quality features as possible.

9.) Colors ! There are 5-8 Millions of colors visible in the human spectrum. Learn how to use them .

Why is it that 80% of games consist of Black, Grey, dark grey, brown, light brown, pee yellow, puke yellow, Red, dark red, fire red, Dragon red, blacker black, slightly less black.......and that is it ?????

Open up your mind and you Palette. There are a lot of people to blame this one on...not just the artists.

10.) Get away from doing " Dark" games. The industry in a whole is obsessed , it seems, with death and destruction and killing and evil ugly things.

What about the rest of the beautiful world around us or your own imaginary beautiful world that you can create for us out of nothing ?

The industry as a whole is far too close minded. And that is mostly because of who runs these companies.