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Me, Myself, and I: The Single Player’s Lament

GamingLives.com talks about the ever increasing multiplayer element of games encroaching onto the single player side of things.

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Flavor2560d ago (Edited 2560d ago )

Heaven for-fend you have to compete against other human beings.

Sorry that you have so much difficulty playing with others. Or that you are simply too slow and clumsy to be competitive, yeah, what’s that word -

incompetent?

Did the big boys say mean things to you online? Were your feelings damaged? Want a nap?

Hard to aim at someone because they would, you know, keep moving? Or shoot back at you, not like those safe, friendly AI?

You don’t like multiplayer, fine. Cool story. Don’t go trashing developers, games, and players because they are enjoying something you don’t like and/or are bad at. It is popular for a reason.

There wasn’t some suit crunching numbers who burst into a boardroom screaming that multiplayer meant money – they simply asked gamers what they enjoyed, and looked at how people were using their products. Once you compete and interact with living, thinking human beings – and all the good and bad things that come with it – playing with yourself becomes just that.

Single player isn’t going away any time soon and is still the dominant game type across all platforms and genres. And if SP were to suddenly die out tomorrow, you can always mute the mics of those intimidating, unruly youths that plague your nightmares.

CadDad2560d ago

I don't think he's complaining about multi-player modes or players who prefer multi-player.

I think he's complaining that he can't avoid it if he wants to complete a games rewards system and he feels that multi-player can and does take away from the single player experience.

It's easy to call him incompetent, clumsy, or slow, but even if all of the above were true, it boils down to pot//kettle since you don't want him trashing things you enjoy, you trash his opinion in the same way.

I'd venture a guess that I've been gaming longer than most and I've out-grown multi-player shooters and the like, it has nothing to do with my level of skill at games. I just don't enjoy them anymore for many of the reasons the author mentioned and probably a few others if I really thought about it. I like trophies and achievements, but I won't subject myself to hours of grinding with strangers unless it's in my control whether I get the trophy or not, a lot of multi-player rewards are completely out of my hands so I don't go for them.

It's a difference of opinion about what makes a game fun, pretty standard stuff, no need to get all defensive about what you like.

cogniveritas2560d ago

I think the article was better thought out than some of your comments give it credit for. But, my opinion is that the rise of multiplayer is giving developers an excuse to slack on their development of intelligent A.I. My impression of what I got from your post is that you equate multiplayer opponents as a superior challenge compared to A.I. opponents in games. My question is why aren't developers taking on that challenge and proudly boasting their focus on innovating better partner & enemy A.I. Not to mention the whole idea of A.I. that you can speak with and get responses from seems to be a challenge no one is openly working on for mainstream games.

The idea of creating better A.I. is so that you don't feel like you're playing alone. But rather than trying to achieve that A.I., developers are safely creating new map packs and guns and telling gamers to have at it.

PooEgg2560d ago

@Flavor - Ever consider the reason some people don't enjoy multiplayer games is that they simply don't want to associate with people who fly off the handle when someone has a opinion that differs from their own, because really those types of people are not any fun to be around.

etherfiend2559d ago

This comment was also posted on the original article, so I'll post my response here too (and thanks to those like CadDad & Cogniveritas for the supportive comments):

Incompetent? – At no point did I say I failed at them, just pointing out that some are unfair to new players unless they are willing to put in hours of constant death to get up to speed on maps, etc. Some people will always be better and fair play to them, but deliberately ostracizing the new players isn’t going to bring new fans.

Did the big boys say mean things to you online? -No, just mostly pointless dribble littered with profanity.

Were your feelings damaged? – No, some random won’t hurt my feelings, but even if I were caressing a bruised soul, it doesn’t mean that the aggressive attitudes are valid. Banter, acceptable trash talk, sure – but the all too common diatribe of nonsense can’t honestly add any enjoyment to anyone but the player that likes the sound of his own voice.

Want a nap? – Yes please! =D

Hard to aim at someone because they would, you know, keep moving? Or shoot back at you, not like those safe, friendly AI? – Not at all, I don’t think I mentioned this at all and if that is what you took away from this piece then I apologise.

It is popular for a reason. – Yes. No way I could argue against that, my argument isn’t that multiplayer shouldn’t exist, it’s that there is a place for multiplayer and it encroaching a number of singe-player IP’s is not the right fit. The Red Faction example proves my point, hardly anyone is playing the online offering merely months after release, that could have been another chapter in the story. On the flip side removing multiplayer from Gears of War 3 would have been silly, it suits the multiplayer environment and has a lot of success there.

As for the money thing, well the slew of online passes, map-packs, etc means money is always a factor, and by adding multiplayer they aim to extend the life/income of the product – it was pretty much alluded to by Cliff Bleszinski recently: “Because gamers have gotten savvy to the world of rentals and used games, so if you ship a game with a campaign that isn’t 300 hours, you’re going to be a rental. We want to make sure we have a deep multiplayer suite.”
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/...

Thanks for the comment though, I expected a few people to throw some counter-points my way.

+ Show (1) more replyLast reply 2559d ago
harrisonxxi2560d ago

I would rather have a game with fantastic multiplayer than a game with fantastic singleplayer. The reason is simple. You can only play the sp so long before it becomes stale, while the mp gives you far more bang for your buck in the long run. Plus gamers have shown that they vastly prefer a solid multiplayer experience to a solid singleplayer experience, and companies have followed where the people are putting their money.

Also building an AI is horrendously difficult.

kma2k2560d ago

Seems more & more each day im the minority, for the most part i ignore all multiplayer & love singleplayer. The two exceptions of multiplayer i actually enjoyed are Assasins Creed & Horde mode on Gears 2. Other than that i have no interest in any multiplayer.

PooEgg2560d ago

Generally, I prefer single player games, because I like to focus on the game I am playing without distractions that others bring. I don't have anything against multiplayer, but I do think that some games should stay single player, because tacking on a multiplayer mode just to please the masses often results in mediocrity. I think the gaming market can support both multiplayer and singleplayer, so I don't understand why developers don't just make 100% multiplayer or 100% single player games and leave it at that.

Derpy2559d ago

Personally I'm more of a single player myself and I agree with much of this article. Playing online once and a while is fun, but after a hard day, it's nice to just enjoy a game by myself with no need to worry about stepping on others toes or them stepping on mine. Also it's nice to play the game how I want with no hassling from online bullies or hackers. Though I prefer single player games, I have nothing against online games or those that enjoy them, but it's wrong of the gaming market to assume that that's what everybody wants.