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  • GameSpy: Can There Ever Be a Game of the Year? - Page 1
    vote This sort of details exactly the problem with the whole concept Game of the Year is an entirely subjective thing which needs to be determined on a per user basis For example a couple of years ago we gave Metroid Prime our overall Game of the Year award I played through 14 of the game before finding it so repetitive monotonous and hard to control that I put it away never to be touched again Doesn t really sound like my game of the year huh Now granted fans have a chance to speak up for themselves in the yearly Gamer s Choice voting That s cool although inevitably what happens is whichever juggernaut came out that year wins anyone really think that Halo 2 isn t going to get Xbox game of the year from the fans I m not necessarily complaining about any of this I understand that human beings have an inherent desire to rate and rank things I ran the GameSpy Forums for years after all I also understand that while no Game of the Year is going to satisfy every single user those titles which are in contention usually have a pretty good shot of being thoroughly enjoyed by most of the people who choose to play them I just think it s amusing how worked up people get fighting over these things You could spend the rest of eternity trying to convince me that Halo was the game of the year in 2001 and I m still not going to like the game That s called a difference of opinion and much like in many other areas of life it s not an issue that can really be resolved At least not until nanotechnology unites us all in a hive mind or something

    Original URL path: http://www.gamespy.com/articles/571/571520p1.html (2016-02-16)
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  • GameSpy: The Resident Cynic: The Source of my Happiness - Page 1
    Is it as revolutionary as the first No but I m not sure we ll ever see a game in that genre that is What Half Life 2 does is improve on Half Life in nearly every conceivable way although I could ve done with more updated Xen enemies I wanted to see Source engine versions of the HoundEye and BullSquid The latter game Bloodlines is a flawed but ultimately very satisfying RPG That goes double for fans of dark monster filled settings which if you read my Halloween article you know I am I had a great deal of fun with it even if the endgame does devolve into a morass of spawning enemies and even though there s a critical path bug midway through that has to be cheated around So if I ve been having such fun for the past few weeks what can I complain about Well very little really But then again even though the title of this column is The Resident Cynic that doesn t mean I m required to complain and indeed once in a while I like simply pontificating on a subject These two games both based on the same engine technology have got me thinking about rendering technology in general and how it determines the path of the game industry Confusing Let me put it simply there s such a thing as too pretty or too complex in certain situations Half Life 2 proves that you can make a game gorgeous while keeping the core technology relatively easy to work with from a development perspective Quite simply Half Life 2 is not as technically complex as for example Doom 3 Don t get me wrong it uses a lot of the same tricks and techniques Half Life 2 supports all kinds

    Original URL path: http://www.gamespy.com/articles/568/568501p1.html (2016-02-16)
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  • GameSpy: The Resident Cynic: Where have all the PC games gone? - Page 1
    surely swallowing up the PC industry I don t have anything against consoles I understand why many people prefer them to the PC You get to sit down on your couch in front of a big TV and play the games with your friends watching or participating Consoles provide for comfort and fun social activity that the PC has a hard time duplicating although the limited multiplayer that consoles currently provide of course doesn t hold a candle to the social functions that PC multiplayer titles have been delivering for years The Wind Waker crew Though I have nothing against consoles I also don t own any I used to own a GameCube but when I realized that I hadn t used it in over four months and that I honestly didn t like some of the most lauded titles for the system including Metroid Prime and The Legend of Zelda Wind Waker I gave the system to my younger brother to take to college This again shouldn t reflect poorly on the system or those games Quite simply I don t have the patience that most gamers have after so many years of playing with a critical eye turned toward the titles It seems that the mechanics of many console games including the two I just mentioned revolve very heavily around basic repetition in order to defeat many tasks I can t count the number of times that I became so frustrated with the controls in Wind Waker that I literally hurled my WaveBird across the room in frustration resulting in sixty dollars worth of broken plastic when all was said and done The thing is with either Prime or Wind Waker if I d had the opportunity to play them on the PC with a mouse keyboard driven

    Original URL path: http://www.gamespy.com/articles/564/564913p1.html (2016-02-16)
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  • GameSpy: The Resident Cynic: A Scary Scarcity this Halloween - Page 1
    really nothing scary coming out this year Sure we ve got DOOM 3 And it s pretty creepy But it s not a horror game really It s sort of a survival horror FPS that s set in space and it has moments that are genuinely spooky but it s still a shooter at heart It s just a shooter where more things jump out of closets than normal I m looking for games like Nocturne or Clive Barker s Undying a title which despite its flaws did a very good job of being just well unnerving I m looking for something like Silent Hill or the Resident Evil remake or even a title like the horribly ill advised Nightmare Creatures 2 back in the Dreamcast days Nightmare Creatures Instead this year s Halloween releases include an NBA game and a bunch of surprise surprise and if I hadn t already ranted about this I would now World War II games Oh and the winner for scariest title but not actually a horror game itself Bobobo bo Bo bobo Dasshutsu Hajike Rowaiaru I m not making that up by the way You can check our release dates page I wish more companies American companies anyway would understand that there are other settings beyond sci fi fantasy and military combat It sometimes seems like developers sit down in a conference room at the beginning of a project and throw darts at a board containing only these three options And then the publisher comes in and tells them to scrap it and just make a World War II game instead I wants me some werewolves Vampires Demons and imps and ghosts I want zombies and hellhounds and things that go bump in the night It s Halloween and I want a game

    Original URL path: http://www.gamespy.com/articles/560/560460p1.html (2016-02-16)
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  • GameSpy: The Resident Cynic: Tears, not Cheers. - Page 1
    all three of the best holidays of the year are in sight Halloween Thanksgiving and the December Holiday Season And amidst all of this we re entering the giant game release orgy that industry insiders like to call Q4 The last three months of the year The time when you can count on six new games to be released per day Hold on this is where I get cynical I m keeping it short this week because I want to run lots of responses to my last column but I ve still got something to rant about I hate the holiday buying season concept so very much It s stupid and frustrating and it causes many good games to get overlooked shoved out the door early or otherwise doomed to less than spectacular sales All because the publisher analysis says that your bottom line will do better if you try to sell everything to everyone in one single three month span Doesn t matter if it s a crappy game Doesn t matter if it s not actually finished Doesn t matter if you re releasing a competing product at the same time Just shove it out the door in October or November because by god the percentages say that its best shot to succeed will come at that time Sort of curious though that Blizzard s games like Diablo 2 and Warcraft III have come out during the supposedly dead periods of the year when no one buys games isn t it These titles sell millions of copies and they don t just do it during the holiday season I mean sure they re Blizzard but how did Blizzard get to be Blizzard They did it by focusing on quality instead of focusing exclusively on mathemagical formulas used to

    Original URL path: http://www.gamespy.com/articles/556/556643p1.html (2016-02-16)
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  • GameSpy: The Resident Cynic: The Ratings Myth - Page 1
    it ll get us an R rating is I m working as a waiter while I write my screenplay I want to take the time with this column to address these points in a bit more detail so I ll break it into two sections ratings systems effects on the user and on the media itself The User Let s take a look at this objectively Forget for a minute that you re used to movie ratings and rapidly growing used to video game ratings Forget thinking about the children and instead focus on the core fault that lies within all ratings systems the loss of personal freedom These systems are designed and built for the express purpose of allowing someone else to not even just tell you what to think but to actively think for you Since when is it okay for a tiny collection of people to tell you how to live your life When you give yourself over to a ratings system this is exactly what you re doing You are tacitly acknowledging that someone else knows what s best for you This is okay when you re ten years old and it s your mother and father making the calls But when you re twenty four and it s a group of usually old white and male board members hidden away in some office In my book that s a cause for concern Actually in my book that s fascism These aren t systems based on public opinion and democracy The ESRB and other forms of concentrated evil like the MPAA are American institutions so I m applying American ideologies to them and when you do that they break down really quickly Sure we in the U S elect a small group of people relatively speaking

    Original URL path: http://www.gamespy.com/articles/552/552055p1.html (2016-02-16)
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  • GameSpy: The Resident Cynic: Lessons from Warcraft - Page 1
    aspects of Blizzard s engine have been surpassed even by some already established games like Asheron s Call 2 The second thing I noticed It doesn t matter The game is stunningly beautiful It s not the textures or the models or the special effects or the lighting it s all of those things It s more than those things World of Warcraft has the most cohesive art direction I ve seen since well Warcraft 3 You could almost convince me that one guy was responsible for all the artwork in the game though of course that s impossible That s all well and good though but it matters little if the game itself sucks After all pretty but soulless is practically a genre in game design right I could tick off about a half million games from the past five years that fit right into that mold Is World of Warcraft just a beautiful EverQuest clone or does it bring something more to the table I played my character up almost to level 15 over the course of the week or so that I was in the stress test I did many many quests I formed groups with friends and with people I d never met before I chatted in the game and surfed the forums I was playing and having fun sure but I was also trying to gauge the game on a more critical level mainly with this column in mind What I found was interesting Does the game have the most complex quest system I ve ever seen Nope Does it have the smartest NPCs and monsters Nope Does it have the most innovative social structures The most original classes and skill systems Trade skills that don t involve mindlessly and repetitively clicking on a button

    Original URL path: http://www.gamespy.com/articles/547/547887p1.html (2016-02-16)
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  • GameSpy: Resident Cynic: Who Really Makes Games Great? - Page 1
    com newsletter showed up in my mailbox I would skim it see no sign of Insaniquarium Deluxe Released and delete it in disgust unread I care not for your puzzle games BRING FORTH THE FISH BASED RTS I ll go as far as to say that if you d given me a choice between having DOOM 3 Half Life 2 or Insaniquarium Deluxe released this year I d have chosen the latter Fortunately it appears that I m going to get to play all three making 2004 arguably the best year for gaming for me since 2000 when the original Deus Ex came out But as happy as I am about Insaniquarium I m still annoyed about something which is no real surprise I m always annoyed about something In this instance it s something that s become more and more significant and more and more of a problem with each passing year Insaniquarium Deluxe Quite simply there are a lot of people out there who seem to think that they are a much greater part of a game s success than they really are They seem to believe they re owed special consideration by the game s developer and publisher We can basically divide this into two groups competitive gamers i e guys who are trying to win money playing the game not just people who play online and mod makers Let s get into some detail on what I m talking about shall we Competitive Gamers The attitude amongst a large chunk of these guys is that they are owed certain inalienable rights because they dropped fifty bucks on a game They should have input into the design process and the weapon balancing They should receive corporate sponsorship They should be guaranteed spots in random draw tournaments Why

    Original URL path: http://www.gamespy.com/articles/543/543492p1.html (2016-02-16)
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