It's open season on open world games

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It's open season on open world games

#1

Post by steeze » Tue Mar 17, 2020 2:00 pm

For some reason the whole open world concept that's been hitting us harder every year doesn't seem to be slowing down any time soon and many people seem divided on it. Some enjoy that sandbox appeal and others prefer the hack and slash Action Rps that we see becoming more and more relevant. The open world element though really has started to find it's way into every genre of gaming. There are also people that don't seem to really enjoy open world games which I've seen a few people on here speak up on but i'd love to hear them expand more on. I feel like most would agree that BOTW was a really ambitious and amazing addition to the franchise and set itself apart in many ways from the traditional open world games we're seeing nowadays. Whether you're occupying a world like in GTA or changing and creating a world like in Minecraft there are these open world elements that are just not going away in many of these games.

What's making some of these games, for people who aren't a fan of the open world elements, pick them up? Another question on my mind is, what are you really looking for if you pick up an open world game and you're into these kinds of projects? Is the goal to make it so realistic that it's almost indistinguishable from real world mechanics and limitations? I feel like ever since I was young that's what I've seen always dreamed future video games would be like. You look at the whole toxic environment that comes from PC gaming with the whole master race thing, which is stupid but does really make me think. Is the open world game trend just a product of this environment? When looking at a game like No Man's Sky, you can see that what they set to do was create an alternative universe that could evolve on it's own. With players would just be along for the ride.. Ambitious with a botched start but they've really created a decent game after the patches. Idk these are just some of my thoughts and questions. If you think about how people look at video games, I feel like open world games were destined to become integrated into gaming from the jump.

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Re: It's open season on open world games

#2

Post by I REALLY HATE POKEMON! » Tue Mar 17, 2020 8:39 pm

I'm definitely in the anti-open world camp now, it was cool up until Skyrim. It's not that I have a problem with the concept, just the execution and sheer amount of them that exist. The worst is when the genre infects established franchises like MGS. Zelda can be argued to have been open world from the beginning but that's not what people remember it for, the LttP/OoT style is. BotW dropped the ball way hard because it not only ditched established design philosophies but the whole thing was empty and boring (few enemy types and nothing meaningful or interesting to do in the world but collect seeds and more breakable weapons).

If PS5 opens the door to more interactive, living worlds instead of empty worlds full of seeds then maybe I'd care again after the burnout wears off. I'm probably just always going to prefer linear games in general though, I like some freedom but not at the expense of structure.

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Re: It's open season on open world games

#3

Post by Sim Kid » Wed Mar 18, 2020 2:39 pm

While the core division comes from people having different tastes in their entertainment (Because let's be honest... some people would have way more fun camping in Yosemite than they would spending a weekend in a theme park), my hypothesis is that one element of the divisiveness is just because of burnout.

After all, I remember about 15-20 years ago when people were bored of JRPGs and Collect-a-thon platformers and savaging them on basis of being JRPGs and Collect-a-thons.

As the new tens came, games like Ni No Kuni and Bravely Default became critical and commercial successes and Square-Enix was like "Wait you people like JRPGs again?"
...while people were mocking them for it, the same people seemed to forget how, 8-10 years ago, JRPGs were savaged by reviewers and players alike and their sales figures kinda were sluggish. Meanwhile open world games like GTA, things by Ubisoft, and Elder scrolls were flying off the shelves, as were FPSes. They held almost complete immunity to criticism.

Lest we also forget Yooka Laylee being one of Kickstarter's success stories... people suddenly liked Collect-a-thon platformers again. Yet 10 years ago? Fetch quests and collecting quests were made fun of.

...so what changed?

My hypothesis? People just took a break - including publishers. And then realised how much they really did like it.

I mean, think of say.... special treats or dinners. Like Tamales - most hispanic people I know only have Tamales for special occasions. Family gatherings, Birthdays, Christmas, Graduations. If you had Tamales for dinner every week, it'd lose its special qualities.

It's kinda like how people hear I'm in CO and ask what ski resort is my favourite and say how jealous they are because I live nearby all the ski resorts. They're... actually not that special to me. For the same reason it's not that special for people who live around Orlando to be so close to Universal Studios and Disneyworld. I mean if you asked me what I'd do for a spring break vacation.... it'd probably be to go to Disneyland or Las Vegas. yet my friends who live in Las Vegas or Reno would pick Aspen or Wheatridge.

tldr? We're seeing so many open world games that we're just getting bored of them and they need to try harder to impress us. To the point where people seem to be okay with linear or pseudo-linear games that are fun to play despite 10-15 years ago trashing them.

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Re: It's open season on open world games

#4

Post by Apiary Tazy » Wed Mar 18, 2020 3:32 pm

It's old, but I did write about this before.
Empty wastes of nothing, while it can make sense, do not make a good game if it all looks the same. It’s technically not about direction, so much as it is about occupation. Give me as many keys as you want and as many wrong keyholes as you can muster, but if the path between key and door isn’t anything to write home about, I’d rather go home and do something else. The journey is far more important than the destination, especially if you’re the one making that journey. That’s the real rub of an open world game, what really makes such games interesting. Otherwise it’s a chore, and I’d rather do my actual chores.

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