Op Ed

Cliffski’s Blog - Size Doesn’t matter.
Is Halo a better game than World of Goo? Personally, I probably enjoyed WoG better, but I haven’t finished either game, so I have no idea which is longest. Clearly, game length didn’t vaguely factor in for me. And That doesn’t put me in some minority either. A huge chunk of gamers never finish games. I’ve been gaming since pong and only ever ‘finished’ 3 games in my entire life. I got bored with Half Life (yes really) and Half Life 2, and Bioshock, and almost any game you care to mention. When I read about how some l33t haxxor ‘finished’ a game in 8 hours, I find it laughable. Imagine bragging about ‘finishing’ war and peace in 2 days. The idea is to enjoy the experience, not race to the end as fast as you can.

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19.
 
Re: Op Ed
Aug 18, 2010, 15:00
19.
Re: Op Ed Aug 18, 2010, 15:00
Aug 18, 2010, 15:00
 
Cliffski's stereotype of the speedrun 'leet haxor' is mistaken. Quake Done Quick is a testament of hundreds of hours of practice... more comparable to reciting Hamlet than speed-reading it. (I hope that's both the first and last time Quake and Hamlet are ever used in the same metaphor)

However, I strongly agree with the main point of his post - a game shouldn't be judged by its length. Final Fantasy XII made me give up with a howling IS THIS EVER GOING TO END, and the last thing I want to see is FF XIV touted as 'twice as long'!

Edit: I think I should add that this is why we have critics. If most gamers are going to give up halfway through Diablo and Bioshock, SOMEONE needs to take the social responsibility of saying that it's totally worth hanging in there.

This comment was edited on Aug 18, 2010, 15:07.
18.
 
Re: Op Ed
Aug 18, 2010, 14:57
Kxmode
 
18.
Re: Op Ed Aug 18, 2010, 14:57
Aug 18, 2010, 14:57
 Kxmode
 
Bitterbug wrote on Aug 18, 2010, 12:41:
How exactly do you disagree with him saying he got bored of games?
If he said "I'm hungry." would you disagree with that too?

Is it really hard to understand? I wasn't bored with Half Life, Half Life 2, Bioshock and almost any game he might have cared to mention. I disagree with his critique that most games are boring. Understand now?
"Listen, Peter... with great horsepower comes... the sickest drifts..." - source
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17.
 
Re: Op Ed
Aug 18, 2010, 14:51
17.
Re: Op Ed Aug 18, 2010, 14:51
Aug 18, 2010, 14:51
 
Wowbagger_TIP wrote on Aug 18, 2010, 14:32:
That just seems silly to me. If a game is so bad or annoying that I have no desire to finish it, that's a perfectly valid and informed opinion. Plus, I don't have to play shite to completion, making my life more pleasant.

There's a lot of apologists on the Internet who always insist that a game only hits it stride at some imaginary gameplay length. In some cases maybe a good game becomes a great game or etc but for the most part I find it a convenient fanboy parachute more than anything else. FFXIII is a good example of that. As if the gameplay changing at the 20+ hour mark somehow excuses the previous hour upon hour of corridor based snoozefest with poor characterization and a story best described as convoluted.
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16.
 
Re: Op Ed
Aug 18, 2010, 14:43
16.
Re: Op Ed Aug 18, 2010, 14:43
Aug 18, 2010, 14:43
 
And thus, because YOU don't care about how long a game is, (other) developers shouldn't care either, and people that DO play a game to completion are just shit out of luck, right?

If you don't care how long a game is, why do you fucking care if a certain subset of gamers would like to see long games again? I'll never understand that fucking mentality. It's the same as when people bitch about quicksaves ruining a game. DON'T FUCKING USE IT IF YOU DON'T FUCKING LIKE IT.

Similarly, if you're so easily bored by everything in existence that you can't even finish a game like Half-Life, then stop fucking COMPLAINING about it. Revel in the fact that you have the attention span of a goldfish, and leave everybody else who DO get invested in a good game for 15 or 20 hours to enjoy those 20 hours in fucking peace, instead of joining the brigade who keeps bitching that games should be "an hour at most." or insane fucking shit like that.

Creston
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15.
 
Re: Op Ed
Aug 18, 2010, 14:36
Prez
 
15.
Re: Op Ed Aug 18, 2010, 14:36
Aug 18, 2010, 14:36
 Prez
 
I always wondered why people who rarely finish games always seem to think that is some kind negative against gaming. I always take it to mean that the person in question has a significantly stunted attention span.
“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”
- Mahatma Gandhi
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14.
 
Re: Op Ed
Aug 18, 2010, 14:32
14.
Re: Op Ed Aug 18, 2010, 14:32
Aug 18, 2010, 14:32
 
If I start a game, I oblige myself to finish it, even though I have a mental list of about 7 games I still have to finish, I'm working on it. Yeah, it sometimes leads to me playing shite, but at least I can have a valid opinion of the game having played it to completion. Sometimes it leads to the discovery of hidden gems.
That just seems silly to me. If a game is so bad or annoying that I have no desire to finish it, that's a perfectly valid and informed opinion. Plus, I don't have to play shite to completion, making my life more pleasant.
"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, but wiser people so full of doubts." -- Bertrand Russell (I think...)
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13.
 
Re: Op Ed
Aug 18, 2010, 14:13
13.
Re: Op Ed Aug 18, 2010, 14:13
Aug 18, 2010, 14:13
 
If I start a game, I oblige myself to finish it, even though I have a mental list of about 7 games I still have to finish, I'm working on it. Yeah, it sometimes leads to me playing shite, but at least I can have a valid opinion of the game having played it to completion. Sometimes it leads to the discovery of hidden gems.
12.
 
Re: Op Ed
Aug 18, 2010, 13:37
12.
Re: Op Ed Aug 18, 2010, 13:37
Aug 18, 2010, 13:37
 
PropheT wrote on Aug 18, 2010, 13:10:
Size doesn't matter as much as replayability, but it does matter. War and Peace is long because it needed to be to tell its story, and a good video game follows the same formula. The best games are as long as they need to be to accomplish what they set out to do.

I second that. Problem is many modern games have shallow/mediocre gameplay AND are short in hours.
11.
 
Re: Op Ed
Aug 18, 2010, 13:32
11.
Re: Op Ed Aug 18, 2010, 13:32
Aug 18, 2010, 13:32
 
For me its about the experience as a whole. I've finished Demons Souls about six times now and still play it for the PvP once in awhile. It's a tremendous all around experience with very little actual story telling surprisingly. What little characterization is present would be described as vague at best but still remains compelling.

So I don't think that there is any particular factor you can point to with a game and say that it is the most important. Length, gameplay, sound design, immersion and so on are all more important as a whole than individually.
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10.
 
Re: Op Ed
Aug 18, 2010, 13:10
10.
Re: Op Ed Aug 18, 2010, 13:10
Aug 18, 2010, 13:10
 
I've finished three games in the last two weeks, so maybe I'm just a different kind of gamer... but if you make no effort to finish a game and just play it for the experience, aren't you ignoring part of that experience?

I like the characterization and storytelling in games, as juvenile as it is a lot of the time. If I don't finish a game it's because the story wasn't worth seeing to the end, or the characters weren't interesting enough for me to want to find out what happens to them.

I tend to enjoy RPG's more because of this, but not exclusively; not if a developer puts enough time into "the experience" rather than just making things look good or explode in interesting ways.

Size doesn't matter as much as replayability, but it does matter. War and Peace is long because it needed to be to tell its story, and a good video game follows the same formula. The best games are as long as they need to be to accomplish what they set out to do.

9.
 
Re: Op Ed
Aug 18, 2010, 13:00
9.
Re: Op Ed Aug 18, 2010, 13:00
Aug 18, 2010, 13:00
 
I wanted to like GSB, i really did. i didnt. Halo3 on the hand was good, and i did finish it. :\

Everyone on Bluesnews is synical, get over it.
edit: i cant spell, this is my disclaimer.
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8.
 
Re: Op Ed
Aug 18, 2010, 12:54
8.
Re: Op Ed Aug 18, 2010, 12:54
Aug 18, 2010, 12:54
 
That's not necessarily true. The game could be so good that you've played it over and over and over again, finding shortcuts, zipping through the difficult parts with ease. I remember doing just that with Super Metroid back in the day and there are plenty of YouTube videos demonstrating speed-runs for practically every game under the sun.

I've also seen plenty of television programs or news segments talking with speed readers and their phenomenal ability to read and digest gargantuan novels in record time. In a modern world obsessed with productivity, speedily performing a task is something that's highly regarded by many people.

What I find interesting is how Cliffski makes the claim that the length of a game has no bearing on how good it is, that most people don't finish playing a game...but then he holds up War and Peace as an example of good literature and scoffs at the notion of someone bragging about finishing it quickly specifically because it is known for being a lengthy novel.

Is "War and Peace" a better piece of literature than "Dead in the Family"? Personally, I probably enjoyed "Dead in the Family" better, but I haven't finished either book, so I have no idea which is longest.
7.
 
Re: Op Ed
Aug 18, 2010, 12:52
7.
Re: Op Ed Aug 18, 2010, 12:52
Aug 18, 2010, 12:52
 
I finished Half-Life and had fun all the way through, at least twice. With Bioshock, I only made it around half-way or so before i got bored with it.

I think I'm one of those that gets bored with games rather easily. This is generally because the game is repetitive, like Torchlight, or where the game mechanics are shallow and I can already see exactly how things are going to play out, and don't feel like going through the motions. Even worse are those games that are difficult in ways that basically make me have to figure out what the hell the developer was thinking when he built a certain level or puzzle or whatever. That's just way too much like work for me. Games that lack a certain internal consistency are annoying. Trial and error mechanics, because they just make random things work differently than any other instance of that thing, are highly annoying.
"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, but wiser people so full of doubts." -- Bertrand Russell (I think...)
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6.
 
Re: Op Ed
Aug 18, 2010, 12:43
6.
Re: Op Ed Aug 18, 2010, 12:43
Aug 18, 2010, 12:43
 
He's posting an editorial, of course people are going to inject their own preferences into it in a discussion based on it.
Avatar 51617
5.
 
Re: Op Ed
Aug 18, 2010, 12:41
5.
Re: Op Ed Aug 18, 2010, 12:41
Aug 18, 2010, 12:41
 
How exactly do you disagree with him saying he got bored of games?
If he said "I'm hungry." would you disagree with that too?
4.
 
Re: Op Ed
Aug 18, 2010, 12:26
4.
Re: Op Ed Aug 18, 2010, 12:26
Aug 18, 2010, 12:26
 
When I say that I beat a game in 8 hours, it's a complaint, not some kind of brag.
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3.
 
Re: Op Ed
Aug 18, 2010, 12:26
Kxmode
 
3.
Re: Op Ed Aug 18, 2010, 12:26
Aug 18, 2010, 12:26
 Kxmode
 
The idea is to enjoy the experience, not race to the end as fast as you can.

I agree.

I got bored with Half Life (yes really) and Half Life 2, and Bioshock, and almost any game you care to mention.

I disagree.

Is Halo a better game than World of Goo? Personally, I probably enjoyed WoG better, but I haven’t finished either game, so I have no idea which is longest. Clearly, game length didn’t vaguely factor in for me. And That doesn’t put me in some minority either. A huge chunk of gamers never finish games. I’ve been gaming since pong and only ever ‘finished’ 3 games in my entire life. [...] When I read about how some l33t haxxor ‘finished’ a game in 8 hours, I find it laughable. Imagine bragging about ‘finishing’ war and peace in 2 days. [...]

I'm indifferent.
"Listen, Peter... with great horsepower comes... the sickest drifts..." - source
Avatar 18786
2.
 
Re: Op Ed
Aug 18, 2010, 12:20
2.
Re: Op Ed Aug 18, 2010, 12:20
Aug 18, 2010, 12:20
 
I got bored with Half Life (yes really) and Half Life 2, and Bioshock

You're doing it wrong.
1.
 
Re: Op Ed
Aug 18, 2010, 12:08
1.
Re: Op Ed Aug 18, 2010, 12:08
Aug 18, 2010, 12:08
 
OK, but if the point is to enjoy the experience and not "race to the end" like you said - what if finishing the game and putting closure to it, is a big part of the enjoyment?

So go ahead, laugh and be judgmental towards the gamers who race to the finish line. I personally won't. How many of these same gamers, who you've criticized, bought any of your games, Cliffski?
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