Where's My Spectator Mode?
We all like challenge. Most of us who like challenge like competition. Those of us who like competition are likely to enjoy watching two sides go at it. So when you combine that with the love of video games, you get a very enjoyable and even a guide to those who don't find themselves doing well in a particular game. With what I feel is such a wonderful option to give gamers, why isn't it everywhere?
I didn't start playing online shooters until a few years after the currrent generation of console games had started. I was fairly new to shooters in general with only Halo 2 under my belt and a few others that aren't worth mentioning. When Uncharted 2: Among Thieves was nearing release, I decided to pick myself up a PS3. Aside from the fact that I turned out to be rather talented at the game, I enjoyed the game's offerings. One of those things was the cinema mode. What is more satisfying than watching myself or another player beast around a map other than doing it myself? It was a feature that I wish was in every multiplayer game, but found it wasn't.
Almost a year later, I pick up Resistance: Fall of Man. Now, this is easily my favorite single-player shooter ever, but I have to say the multiplayer left a bad taste in my mouth. I have nothing against it and I respect those who find it to their liking, but it just wasn't my thing. But while I WAS playing it (kind of), I stumbled across spectator mode, which allowed me to view other players' games. I thought this was probably one of the coolest features I'd ever run into in a video game, but it was even better because instead of just looking through an orbital camera, I was able to walk around and jump as if I was actively participating in the match. Then there's the ability to watch other player's race in Gran Turismo 5 - the only problem being is that you take up a space in the lobby even if you just want to watch, which can understandably annoy some people. But how cool is that?
I can only wish that more games would adopt a set-up similar to that found in FoM. I thought it was a great feature in a game that not too many people play anymore, but what if it was implemented in a new and/or popular game like Resistance 3 or Battlefield? Imagine the epicness of being able to soar across a huge map in real-time and witness a full-scale battle taking place. Wouldn't that be cool? Or maybe a more personal teabagging by a live player? Double the fun!
With a few more games giving cinema mode to gamers this year, I hope this starts a much desired trend in my future purchases. Having access to these modes regardless of what I'm actually playing would be like a dream come true. I might have to wait until the next generation or beyond, but I really hope I don't. These modes truly complete the multiplayer experience and give the community a stronger connection.
I think that if there was one thing I could make standard in all future multiplayer games, it would be to include a Cinema and Specator mode. You can learn, lay back, laugh, or watch a friend finish his game instead of waiting at an uneventful lobby screen. I'm sure I can find some people here on N4G that would agree with me, no?