Posted by: maddrcliche | June 2, 2011

Mix It Up

Hello pretty ones, sorry it’s been so long since my last post.

So whatever happened to all those nice mini-games? Remember in Final Fantasy VII when all of a sudden you were riding a motorcycle and hitting guys with your sword while protecting your friends who were riding in a van? Or when you rode a Chocobo in a race? Or piloted a submarine? Or commanded an army? It made the adventure feel all the more epic for throwing in these occasional shifts in gameplay and made the world feel much more dynamic. Then the next game in the series came along and there was just some crappy card game. Why not have more of these? Someone please tell me why game designers are so afraid to think outside the box and make something new.

I recently played L.A. Noire and it was amazing. Don’t get me wrong, it has its flaws and there were moments where I got really annoyed with the interrogation system, I’ll admit, but all in all it was a totally unique experience and I would recommend it to any gamer just because of that. Games don’t need to be a slave to genres, developers should mix and match things to realize whatever their vision is. L.A. Noire is a brawling, driving, shooting, adventure game, and that’s what makes it awesome. Final Fantasy VII has all these different mini-games and it makes you feel like the adventure you are a part of is on a much grander scale than other RPGs.

Why can’t a first person shooter have a dynamic conversation system with branching pathways? Why can’t a giant mecha game have dating sim elements where you interact with the other pilots? Why can’t a survival horror game have you collecting clues and piecing together evidence to bring a masked serial killer to justice? Games are such a unique medium for telling a story and there are so many ways different elements could be brought together to create something new and exciting, yet most games come out just follow the same cookie cutter design as each game that came before it.

Don’t get me wrong, I have a fun time playing a first person shooter with regenerating health and a cover system with my friends, but why is it they are all the same? Surely game designers can aspire to more than “Gears of War in ____ setting” or “Halo in _____ setting”. That’s why I love games like L.A. Noire or Deadly Premonition, they feel like something you’ve never seen before, and I heartily recommend both of them if for no other reason than that.

Okay, this was a short post, but it seemed like an interesting topic and it’s been on my mind. Adieu!


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