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Romero on Making an Old School FPS: "I Have Plans"

Famed designer John Romero tweets a response to the question about whether one of the creators of DOOM and QUAKE has "given up on making a good old school FPS." His answer is unequivocal: "Definitely not! I have plans..." He did, however, quickly debunk kneejerk speculation this might be Daikatana II. Thanks Janic.

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25. Re: Romero on Making an Old School FPS: Mar 11, 2012, 21:33 Dev
 
vrok wrote on Mar 11, 2012, 20:50:
You're using singleplayer story as the indicator of whether an FPS is mediocre, good or spectacular? Or did you just forget that the S in FPS actually stands for shooter?
You can "shooter" AI monsters, or "shooter" other players, in either case its a "shooter."

Some people prefer single player, some prefer multiplayer, and a few even like both. However, I think long term longevity has always relied on multiplayer (see CS and TFC and TF2, etc). In a single player shooter game its usually only playable a few times and people move on after a short time (perhaps like the classics for some is occasionally replayed years later). Whereas with people into multiplayer, a game is often played hours a week for months or years.
 
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24. Re: Romero on Making an Old School FPS: Mar 11, 2012, 20:50 vrok
 
Bhruic wrote on Mar 11, 2012, 15:27:
a big part of what made ID great was missing...

You know, I was thinking about this a bit, and what it comes down to is that I don't think id was ever great. It was a lack of comparison. There was nothing spectacular about Doom beyond the novelty of it. There was nothing spectacular about Quake beyond the technical innovation.

An easy example is Half Life (I know id didn't make it, but irrelevant to the example). What made Half Life stand out was its comparisons - FPS at the time didn't have storylines - or, not compelling ones like HL. It stood out from the games of its time based on its uniqueness. But imagine if the original HL wasn't made, some other game did the "storyline FPS", and HL was released today - modern graphics, but otherwise the same story. It might be considered "good", but that'd be the extent of it.

The same is true of what id did. They pioneered a genre, and the lack of competition made their products really stand out. But it was that lack of competition that made them appear great - not their actual products. Now that there is plenty of competition, id no longer has anything to make it shine over the rest. But that just points out the fact that it wasn't game excellence that they were recognized for - it was that no one else was doing what they did.

And that's why Rage was a disappointment, like Doom 3 was a disappointment, like Doom 4 will likely be a disappointment. They relied on the pioneering edge to make their games stand out, and now that they've lost that, they have nothing to fall back on. And I can't see Romero changing that, even if they were to get back together.
You're using singleplayer story as the indicator of whether an FPS is mediocre, good or spectacular? Or did you just forget that the S in FPS actually stands for shooter?

id did what they were best at, good gameplay, and especially good level design. If you wanted a story you'd go read a book or play an adventure game. As a result they did multiplayer better than anyone. HL, Unreal, or whatever else you can think of never even came close. Tribes was the only one that was even passable and that was partly because of a bug and partly because they took CTF/TF from Quake and expanded upon it.

It was only when CS started growing that the Quake franchise got sidelined and eventually overshadowed completely by modern warfare style team based shooters. To this day the Quake franchise remains as the only truly competitive 1on1 FPSs.

This comment was edited on Mar 11, 2012, 21:37.
 
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23. Re: Romero on Making an Old School FPS: Mar 11, 2012, 20:01 Asmo
 
Fantaz wrote on Mar 11, 2012, 17:04:
A lot of ppl would disagree with you, and even think the opposite of your example given with Valve. In my eyes ID was the true great innovator, pioneer and the greatest game company of the 90's, and Valve was simply copying ID. For Valve, mods like Counter-Strike greatly contributed to the success of Half-Life and I think if ID would have opened up more to the modding community like Epic Games and Valve then they could have had a mod hit which would excel their games also.

Innovation does not always equal a great product. Wolfenstein/Doom were a hell of a lot of fun at the time, but it's hard to be objective about it considered that there just wasn't that much to compare it to.

Bhruic is right though imo, HL1 was the first time I was blown away at the narrative of a FPS, whereas Doom was just a high action game, the storyline didn't really matter, and Quake's storyline was non existent/tacked on. Another example would be Deus Ex which, despite having plenty of flaws, had a particularly awesome narrative.

I give ID a lot of credit for blazing the trail so that people like Valve could build upon that legacy, but I don't believe they are nearly as inherently skilled at making a great game (as opposed to pioneering technology) as they are given credit for. I haven't really enjoyed one of their singleplayer games since Doom 1/2 (although I played the hell out of Q/Q2/Q3 MP).
 
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22. Re: Romero on Making an Old School FPS: Mar 11, 2012, 19:58 Ventura
 
id software needs to just bite the bullet and get the band back together.

I'd be up for that. They say the whole is greater than the sum of its parts, and both Romero and Carmack have done nothing really noteworthy since they split.

If the team responsible for the original Doom series and Quake 1 got back together, that'd get my attention.
 
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21. Re: Romero on Making an Old School FPS: Mar 11, 2012, 19:57 Beamer
 
[VG]Reagle wrote on Mar 11, 2012, 19:43:
Perhaps he has plans to make you his bitch!

That's why it's important to know he's not a big guy - less fear of such things occurring!

Plus everyone says he's exceptionally nice.
 
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20. Re: Romero on Making an Old School FPS: Mar 11, 2012, 19:43 [VG]Reagle
 
Perhaps he has plans to make you his bitch!  
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I am much better now.
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19. Re: Romero on Making an Old School FPS: "I Have Plans" Mar 11, 2012, 19:10 Beamer
 
So, I'd say the main thing I learned at GDC (I did not have a pass for talks) is that I am taller than John Romero, by a decent amount.

Worth the trip for that alone!
 
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Music for the discerning:
http://www.deathwishinc.com
http://www.hydrahead.com
http://www.painkillerrecords.com
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18. Re: Romero on Making an Old School FPS: "I Have Plans" Mar 11, 2012, 18:08 Hump
 
Daikatana multiplayer was a lot of fun.  
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17. Re: Romero on Making an Old School FPS: Mar 11, 2012, 17:17 Mad Max RW
 
Ahem. They *did* have the original Team Fortress. Quake 1 was the peak of modding. We will never see a time like that again.  
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16. Re: Romero on Making an Old School FPS: Mar 11, 2012, 17:04 Fantaz
 
You know, I was thinking about this a bit, and what it comes down to is that I don't think id was ever great. It was a lack of comparison. There was nothing spectacular about Doom beyond the novelty of it. There was nothing spectacular about Quake beyond the technical innovation.

A lot of ppl would disagree with you, and even think the opposite of your example given with Valve. In my eyes ID was the true great innovator, pioneer and the greatest game company of the 90's, and Valve was simply copying ID. For Valve, mods like Counter-Strike greatly contributed to the success of Half-Life and I think if ID would have opened up more to the modding community like Epic Games and Valve then they could have had a mod hit which would excel their games also.
 
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15. Re: Romero on Making an Old School FPS: "I Have Plans" Mar 11, 2012, 16:46 vermin
 
hehe. nevermind daikatana 2, although that would be hilarious, he should just try making daikatana again. and do it right this time. :-DD  
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14. "I Have Plans" Mar 11, 2012, 15:41 space captain
 
too busy making twitter his bitch  
Go forth, and kill!
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13. Re: Romero on Making an Old School FPS: "I Have Plans" Mar 11, 2012, 15:29 Ratty
 
I'd look forward to playing it if I had an IPad or smartphone.  
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12. Re: Romero on Making an Old School FPS: Mar 11, 2012, 15:27 Bhruic
 
a big part of what made ID great was missing...

You know, I was thinking about this a bit, and what it comes down to is that I don't think id was ever great. It was a lack of comparison. There was nothing spectacular about Doom beyond the novelty of it. There was nothing spectacular about Quake beyond the technical innovation.

An easy example is Half Life (I know id didn't make it, but irrelevant to the example). What made Half Life stand out was its comparisons - FPS at the time didn't have storylines - or, not compelling ones like HL. It stood out from the games of its time based on its uniqueness. But imagine if the original HL wasn't made, some other game did the "storyline FPS", and HL was released today - modern graphics, but otherwise the same story. It might be considered "good", but that'd be the extent of it.

The same is true of what id did. They pioneered a genre, and the lack of competition made their products really stand out. But it was that lack of competition that made them appear great - not their actual products. Now that there is plenty of competition, id no longer has anything to make it shine over the rest. But that just points out the fact that it wasn't game excellence that they were recognized for - it was that no one else was doing what they did.

And that's why Rage was a disappointment, like Doom 3 was a disappointment, like Doom 4 will likely be a disappointment. They relied on the pioneering edge to make their games stand out, and now that they've lost that, they have nothing to fall back on. And I can't see Romero changing that, even if they were to get back together.
 
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11. Re: Romero on Making an Old School FPS: Mar 11, 2012, 15:19 Frags4Fun
 
Dev wrote on Mar 11, 2012, 15:10:
I think regardless of what he calls his FPS, its going to be compared to Daikatana.

My thoughts exactly!
 
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10. Re: Romero on Making an Old School FPS: Mar 11, 2012, 15:14 Teddy
 
AnointedSword wrote on Mar 11, 2012, 14:30:
I will keep an eye out for his work. We can call him names and condemn him to hell but when he left ID...a big part of what made ID great was missing...

I tend to agree. When he left an important part of what made ID great was lost. The catch is, it goes both ways. Since leaving, Romero hasn't had a team that has compensated in the areas that HE doesn't do well. It's left his games just as mediocre (or worse) than what ID's put out since.
 
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9. Re: Romero on Making an Old School FPS: "I Have Plans" Mar 11, 2012, 15:10 Dev
 
I think regardless of what he calls his FPS, its going to be compared to Daikatana.  
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8. Re: Romero on Making an Old School FPS: Mar 11, 2012, 15:04 CJ_Parker
 
Romero has plans? May God have mercy on our souls...

 
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7. Re: Romero on Making an Old School FPS: Mar 11, 2012, 14:30 AnointedSword
 
I will keep an eye out for his work. We can call him names and condemn him to hell but when he left ID...a big part of what made ID great was missing...  
If you were right, I would be agreeing with you.
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6. Re: Romero on Making an Old School FPS: "I Have Plans" Mar 11, 2012, 14:11 KilrathiAce
 
Romero is just chillin havin a bud, dont ask him stupid questions!  
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45 Replies. 3 pages. Viewing page 2.
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