5 Things that Need to Change in Gaming

By Mike on 7:47 pm

Filed Under:

Is 2008 going to be a banner year for gaming or are we in for another 1983 style crash? Gaming has certainly improved and the systems we're playing on are more powerful than ever. However, there are some major issues that need to be solved.

5. Eliminate In Game Advertising
Ok, in game advertising has its place. Seeing ads on the boards in sports games adds to the realism of the game. However, I don't want to see ads for Burger King or whatever in first person shooters or driving games. The worst ones are the ads that have absolutely nothing to do with the game itself. They simply become an eyesore. EA is infamous for doing this. In game ads have not made games cheaper. They are of no benefit to the gamer, only to the developers. In game ads have to go.

4. Graphics Aren't Everything
I've seen too many games that are all graphics flash but have no game substance. While games look better than ever, there are a lot of visual wonders that are quite frankly crap. We need to focus on the core aspects of the game such as programing, gameplay, and storyline then move up to graphics. Not graphics first, blow the entire budget, and release a sub-par game.

3. Better Quality Control at the Programming Level
As I mentioned a while ago, there are many quality control issues in game programming. PC games are especially notorious for this but since they can be easily patched, the issue tends to fly under the radar. However, PC gamers shouldn't be forced to wait for patches ad infinitum to fix problems that should not have made it into the final product. What ever happened to game testers? The problem is that distributors are putting harsh time constraints on developers and games get released before they're finished properly. I would also like to inject that the inclusion of DRM into games, especially PC games, is bad programming as they often cause more harm to legitimate users than anything else.

2. Encourage Small, Independent Developers
I fear that big companies like EA, UBIsoft, and Activision buying up small developers will end up harming the industry in the long run. Some of the best games have come from small independent developers. However, with companies like BioWare being bought up by the big three, the quality of the games released tends to decline dramatically. Another issue is that big distributors tend to suck the creativity out of games. Distributors like to play it safe but that's why their in house games suck so much. It's good to be independent.

1. Make Gaming More Accessible
Wii has proven that if you make it easy, they will come. PC gaming has always been expensive but there's no reason that you can't make games that run well on non-SLI, Core 2 Extreme systems. While they are visually stunning, they aren't accessible to people. From about 2001 to 2006, it was entirely possible to comfortably game on a $500 system. That trend seems to be reversing. We also need to revive some genres to give better variety. Not everybody likes MMOs, first person shooters, and car racing games, yet that's all we seem to be getting. Kudos to Telltale for bringing back the adventure game. Those are what I'm talking about. Games that are fun, easy to get into, and don't require IBM's Bluegene to run.

0 comments for this post