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Future of digital gaming

Posted on 2006-06-15
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Last Modified: 2013-12-04
Because Game Development has been so insanely slow I've decided to give us something to discuss for a bit.
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I don't know if anyone else has noticed the decline of gaming as we know it in the past few years.  Some have attributed it to all the good ideas being developed already and not leaving any new innovative ideas for any companies to create...

...Personally I see it as a lack of the publishers not wanting to take a risk and sink money into a new idea that may possibly fail.

However this problem can be over come with a new genre of gaming if the coders as well as the gamers voice their own oppinions that we are sick of games being released with slightly different skins seemingly identical story lines, on the same engine as the release before it!

For example:
Grand Theft Auto


Among coders and gamers alike there is a pluthra of new innovative ways to enhance the gaming experience.  We're now running on boards that have Gig's of RAM and GigaHertz of processing power and video rendering capabilities.

The question here is what would you like to see in the following genre of gaming?
1) FPS - First Person Shooters  
---ie:  Halo, Bond, Doom, etc
2) RPG - Role Playing Games
---ie: Final Fantasy, EverQuest
3) Stratedgey Games
---ie:  WarZone 2100, War Craft, Red Alert, Age of Empires
4) Simulators
---ie: The Sims, Sim City, Pretty much any Maxis game ever released...  Then into the genre of Flight Sims / Fireworks Sims, etc
5) Racing
---ie:  New great ideas came out in Flat Out.. Great innovative ideas there.. but we have Twisted Metal, NASCAR games, etc... what else could we add...

A NEW GENRE!?

I think that might be where it's at... all the venue's have yet to be explored.. hybrids of these Genre's could excel.. and perhaps a new genre of gaming could abound.  With a new age of systems comming out that have more power than your desktop the possibilities are limitless...  Time to push these boxes to their limits with games that are actually worthwhile playing!

((Since this is a discussion topic, points will be split among all participants))

~Aqua~
"Living life one video game at a time"
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Question by:Andrew Beers
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compuken earned 25 total points
ID: 16921779
Will Wright has been trying this, he created a new genre with sims, (well really just made it very popular). I think the genre is called simulation - the sims, sim city, sim park,etc .  Now Will has a new game that sounds very promising and is a take on the simulation genre - sim spore. Well the game is called Spore, http://www.spore.com/ and you start out as a 2d spore that has to eat and live to make it to the next evolutionary step, then you become a 3d spore and have to survive again, then after consuming so much of a certain food, you evolve (this is the fun new dynamic part) and this time your spore is entered into a new mode -edit mode (the spore is basically clay, and you take parts and pieces and add them to your spore) and when you added a part, enter the 3d water world where you eat and survive and enter evolution again and again, until you evolve to a land animal where you have to eat and survive, and so on until you gain intellegence, then you become a civilation and you get to travel to other cities and later other worlds.

The new innovative things is, if you play this with online enabled, your world you are playing on obtains new creatures that others have created and are playing as, so your world changes with others contents, very cool idea.

Yes there is still room for innovation, look at Will Wright, you might not like The Sims but you gotta give credit for creating a new type of game that many love.
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by:Andrew Beers
ID: 16921904
I agree Compuken..

Ideas like that prove that innovative ideas for gaming still exist, but very few publishers are going out on a limb and taking these risks on new ideas.  They are playing it safe... going with what they know will sell instead of an unknown where it may fall flat on its face.  Will Wright has backing due to prior success and thank god someone can put something new and innovative out there...

...But what about new companies... new concepts... new challenges...   And finding publishing for these.  The gaming comunity states the need for something new, game sales are horrifically down.. Why?  Exactly the reason this thread has been made.  Depending on responses from the EE comunity on this I'm going to take this issue to many of the Gaming sites, it's a very real and threatening problem to us as Game Developers and perspective Developers.  Having a fire side discussion on this issue of sorts perhaps can bring this problem to light and put pressure on companies to start hitting their creativity again, and re-energize the gaming comunity to the luster it was only a few short years ago.

~Aqua
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by:gran88
gran88 earned 25 total points
ID: 16922410
It isn't for lack of trying that is bringing the game development innovation down.

Despite the multitude of independant game developers, they simply lack the funding (and probably time) to write a game that can compete in todays markets.  These people are going to dump countless hours into their games, but it will inevitably be harder for them to compete in todays market because of the demands of the consumer:  expansive levels, 10 hours of gameplay, amazing graphics, and nobody really cares about sound (it's a joke).

Considering games like Doom 3, a relatively big hit, the consumer doesn't care if the game is streamlined line-em-up and knock-em-down.  However, surprise hits like Katamari Damacy show that people like new and creative.

The free market is consistently squashing many great ideas and games, merely because of big name developers' greed.  What is stopping average programmer Joe KnowsHisC from making a great game?

Time, he has to feed his family or go to college (sorry highschool kids and under, keep trying).  Joe's got a job, and things to do to survive in society, and hasn't much time for developing.  Also, Joe doesn't know Graphics Design, Joe is unfamiliar with Music Composition, and Joe can write at most, a 3 page essay.  He's missing the most important factor in game design, Art.

People can specialize a lot more easily than they can do everything involved in developing a game, leading to the conclusion that one would need a team of people to even begin to compete with Big-Name Developers.  Friends never cut it.  Ever.  Lack 1 google, apple, and microsoft.

So why don't we put together a team here on EE and go at it?  Anybody interested in a game written in Python, using the Panda3d engine in it's early stages?  I imagine nobody will take me up on the offer, but it's worth a shot.

Finally, you are write about developers not wanting to take a risk.  Why sink money into something that has a 30% chance of succeeding, when we can plow out another Madden 2023?  People still buy it, it still sells, they still make it.  See the connection?
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by:Andrew Beers
ID: 16922481
I'm more than willing to make a go at a new company but you'll never cut it in the market using Pythin and Panda3d as your engine.

I'm actually in the process now of getting together and starting a new innovative company.  It isn't something you can just dive into with you and a few buddies.  You are right about one thing... some joe blow developer with a good idea and no support will never make a game...  But why when a new idea comes out do none of the producer companies like THQ, EA, MSG, Sony sink money into them?  This is a good time to kick the gamers in the teeth and knock their socks off with something new.

To get into it and actually make a serious attempt to get a game out there you need somebody with experience.  I might know code.. I might have idea... I might be able to twiddle with graphics and draw if I put the time into it but it'll never cut it.  In all essence when it comes to things like these you need yourself a marketing producer that has connections and titles behind him.  This is the thing that, even you Compuken, need to look at.  If you want to get into it find a Producer... get him excited... or jump on board with one of their already ongoing projects.

Starting from scratch, you need a lot of time and dedication to get attention... You have to play your marketing cards right and without someone who knows the ropes its nearly impossible.

Single developers can do nothing in todays game market... ID got away with a maricle with Doom 3.. Did any of you bother to see exactly how many coders they actually had?  6... 6 programmers... and a butt load of marketing experience and clout to go with the fantastic FPS engines they release.

Small teams it is possible but you still need the marketing... Period.

~Aqua
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by:compuken
ID: 16937497
www.garagegames.com is your best bet for starting a new company. It has many developers with lives and they form teams and some actually get their game done and have it on garage game's site for sale (games usually go for around 30$ and if you use the torque engine you get 65% royalties 50%? if you don't).



The problem with garagegames.com is that most people won't take you serious until you have some presentation material already, which is hard for a programmer with no art to work with.

I would love to join up to another small team to work on a game, I even have an innovative idea for a game that I can't wait to play (and either can a few co-workers), but my time is limited since the new project just got into full swing (microsoft CRM customizing for insurance brokerage firm).

P.S. I know c++/C/Visual Basic/Visual Basic .net/PHP/ASP.net but little rusty mostly working with networking/troubleshooting/databases/PC repair these days. I own a torque engine license with all the source code, and a copy of GameSpace. Not an artist at all, I am alright at simple 2d stuff but I am trying to learn 3d art to make my own sample files to program with.
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by:Andrew Beers
ID: 16937759
The problem with pulling coders off of Garagegames is the same problem most people run into... Planning meetings using VOIP and some goofy NetMeeting software for display is always difficult... It can be done but something is lost in the process of long distance comunication.

But... I also have a few ideas I'm actively working on, *winks*  Some things don't need huge teams... others do... But having licences to engines is a bonus but also not necissary.  Sometimes it takes just as long to learn an engine as it would be to code your own for all the more functionality you'll use it for.

~Aqua
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by:gran88
ID: 16941626
My idea wasn't to cut in on the market with my small game, but thats another story.

Coincidentally, I found a forum post on the crystal space 3d engine website, with many helpful links which I shall reproduce:  

The 6 Independant Mistakes
http://www.kuro5hin.org/story/2005/7/28/235328/642

Who Started Where
http://www.gamasutra.com/features/20050817/hong_01.shtml

It's an Art
http://www.vancouver.wsu.edu/fac/peabody/game-book/Coverpage.html

Advice:
http://www.sloperama.com/advice.html

http://www2.ravensoft.com/getajob.htm

More:
http://www.gamasutra.com/features/20050721/pfeifer_01.shtml

Basically, they all mention the difficulty of creating a game, the obscene difficulty of independently publishing one, and suggest getting a low level job.  I suppose those links are more for the man who wants to pioneer the new game industry/future.  After 5 hours of reading those articles, you'll see how hard it can be.  If you want to change the industry, it can be even harder.

The underlying theme of the articles echo the complaints here, everybody has ideas, but that won't change what is going to get published.  I for one, vote with my dollar and only buy the games I think are innovative enough to earn it.

The future of the industry is extremely promising. see: Nintendo Wii
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IT, Stop Being Called Into Every Meeting

Highfive is so simple that setting up every meeting room takes just minutes and every employee will be able to start or join a call from any room with ease. Never be called into a meeting just to get it started again. This is how video conferencing should work!

 
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by:Joe
ID: 16954415
What ever happened to Police quest like games, I have not seen them around in a long time. They need to come out with something similar but new aged. Police Quest, Blue Force etc..

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by:Andrew Beers
ID: 16954492
Many game types died due to lack of ideas for implementing them into a graphically complex  3D enviroment... My suggestion to you Joe is write your favorite publisher and ask!

:-P

~Aqua

PS:  That's a new idea.. petition the publishers to put out games that don't suck... hmmm... maybe onto something there.
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by:Joe
ID: 16954550
Hmm. Good Idea I wonder if they would actually take the time out to read it :)
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by:Andrew Beers
ID: 16954583
Publishing companies get so much fan junk mail it would have to be such a significant amount of letters complaining for them to even notice.  Even a single petition signed by every gamer in the world would more than likely never make it to the desk of some nobody HR representative...

...Which is the biggest reason why the voice of the gamers has been squelched and the companies no longer listen to the screams of the gaming comunity that the games being released suck...

...Like Metriod for NintendoDS.. Lost funding...  Do they know how many people were looking to get that game and play it over a wifi connection multiplayer!?  I know that was one of the only reasons I bought a DS... instead they opt to release games like WarioWare that totally sucked.

Everyone in the industry is wondering why game sales are so low... any idiot should be able to answer that question... STOP RELEASING CRAPPY GAMES!  But they do not listen... nor do they care...

Well... I care... and I refuse to work on a crappy game.... Which is why I'm working on my own, if your interested in browser based MMO's... I'll have mine up for beta in a few months...  OR if you know or are a good digital artist contact me through my contact info in my profile!

~Aqua
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by:Andrew Beers
ID: 17228371
My appologies Ven.. I totally forgot about this question.

~Aqua
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by:Venabili
ID: 17228434
No worries. I was not around either, otherwise I would remind you earlier :))
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by:Andrew Beers
ID: 17234512
:-P

I've been crazy bussy... but it's nice to get back into the swing of EE.. now if only there were more Q's for me to go answer.  :-)

I'll be around a bit more hopefully to cause you more grief Ven.. :-P  ...things seem to be slowing down a bit again and life returning to normal...  I'm just glad to see I didn't lose my bragging rights in this TA while I was missing... *winks*

~Aqua
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