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Video Game Development (then and now)

dDave

Well-Known Member
V.I.P.
This is somewhat inspired by the "Now vs. Then" thread about music. This one pertains to games though.

I've been thinking about this a lot lately, video game development seems to have slowed down quite a bit over the years. These days it seems as if the only thing developers really focus on (for the most part) are graphics. Everybody is running around with the HD craze and I feel as if there is a strong refusal to even so much as remember the roots of many games.

80s (and late 70s)
-Introduction of the home console
-First games with storylines
-8bit sound and graphics
-D-Pad (and A, B, Select, Trigger, and Start buttons)
-Reign of the side scroller
-Digital Joystick
-Game Cartridges


90s
-First games on a disc
-Invention of the Analog joystick (and reverse pitch)
-16 bit graphics and sound (early 90s)
-32 bit graphics and sound (late 90s)
-First fully 3-D game environments
-WASD control scheme invented
-Multicore processing invented
-Spoken Dialogue in games (some with synced lip movement)
-First Dual stick controller (PSX controller revised)
-First Online gaming experience
-Invention of DVD media
-Surround sound enabled games
-Refinement of many genres (FPS, RPG, RTS, Platformers, etc.)
-First true cooperative play
-Standardization of the home computer (rise of the internet)

00s (and through 2013)
-64-bit processing
-Multi thread processing invented
-Development of MMORPG
-Graphical Enhancements (Including SLI and Crossfire)
-Invention of motion controls
-Introduction of digital markets (no physical game needed)
-Introduction of Touch Screen Gaming
-Consoles Integrate Home Computer functionality
-Invention of Blu Ray
-720p and 1080p standardized (I call this the "HD Craze"


So as you can see, development has really slowed down. I'm sure that I missed many key things in development, but I got quite a few of the important ones. Why has game development slowed down so much?

Most people I know absolutely refuse to touch an older game, they use excuses like "the graphics are too terrible" or "there's no online capability" or my personal favorite, "It's just too old."

It seems as if almost every single popular game is either a sports game or it's a fps game (and usually quite violent). Now, don't get me wrong, I do enjoy shooting things, it's just that it's been done so much. It feels as if every new game released for the insane price tag of $60 is pretty much the exact same game.

We also haven't seen very many new ideas for games, the same few franchises have been dominating the market for over a decade at this point (CoD, Halo, Warcraft, etc.) My question is where are the new games? How can we be on Halo 4 (though it's technically Halo 7 or something :lol:) or have something like 9 Call of Duty games? Doesn't anybody come up with any new ideas anymore?

The 90s really were the golden age of video games, is it possible to get this back?

But Dave, there's a lot of development within those series.

Why is that? What's so hard about coming up with some new ideas every once in a while? I see everybody recycling the same ideas over and over again and it's getting really old. They really couldn't come up with a better name for a Halo game then "Halo 4"? I realize that there has been plenty of development, it's just that there aren't any new game concepts.

Developers recently have been especially guilty of focusing way too much on graphics and not nearly enough on control scheme, gameplay mechanics, and storyline. Games used to really capture a rich atmosphere, they don't do that any more. It seems as if pretty much all games these days look the same and play the same way. I don't have an issue with HD, in fact I think it's great, but can we focus on a bit more and try to make each popular title as revolutionary as they were back in the day?

Thoughts?
 
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Konshentz

Konshentz
Games used to really capture a rich atmosphere, they don't do that any more. It seems as if pretty much all games these days look the same and play the same way.
Have you played any of the Uncharted games? Or the new Batman games? The new Tomb Raider?

All of those games have incredible atmospheres.
 

dDave

Well-Known Member
V.I.P.
Have you played any of the Uncharted games? Or the new Batman games? The new Tomb Raider?

All of those games have incredible atmospheres.
I have actually played Uncharted and I would agree that the atmosphere is pretty good. My only complaint about the game is that it feels very automated, what I mean is that you can just press a button to kill somebody is some advanced way, the platforming feels automated as well. Just a small complaint though.

While I haven't played Batman: Arkham City as much as Uncharted (which was close to about 5 hours), I have played the game. I find that I really liked the focus back to the comics and even had voice acting from the cartoon. I never played Arkham Asylum, probably should. I should probably get them for PC at some point, I've never really been a fan of dual joysticks over WASD.

As for Tomb Raider, I played several of the older games. I have not yet played the new one which apparently came out just 8 days ago.

When I said that most of the major games feel like the same game, I was speaking generally. Just take a look at the list of best selling games in 2012. It's very weighted to sports games and fps. I also think it's interesting to note that not a single new franchise is on that list. Every game is labeled with at least a 2 or higher. US best-selling games of 2012 announced | Technology | guardian.co.uk

I'm being very nitpicking though.
 
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