Originally Posted by Mediocrefunkybeat
This is where I disagree.
Modern games are great as technological showcases - but I'm one to stand up and say whatever happened to the fun? Advanced graphics and immersive environments are great, but sometimes when you have sixteen buttons of control and a huge character map to remember; I just honestly wish for the days of Super Mario with two buttons and a pad. Those games were fun. Then suddenly, around about 1997 (I would've been about nine) games started getting more and more 'serious' and the fun element was lost. Just occasionally I come across a game that's really great and fun and most of the time I'll find that these are the simplest games of all. 'Braid' (on Xbox) is a great example of this. A simple concept that actually is a lot of fun.
Most games today are all flash and no trousers. They suck you in with (amazing, it has to be said) graphics, but underneath those graphics, the gameplay often outright sucks. It's all about flash with no bang. That's not true of all games, absolutely not - and there were rotten games in the 80's too - some really rotten ones, but generally the substance of mainstream gaming has been lost with this technical obsession. Just because it is possible for all this to be put into games doesn't mean it should. Hell, Space Invaders is a simple concept but play it for long enough and the sheer fun of it will suck you in. Same goes for PacMan, same goes for Tetris, same goes for Prince of Persia and the same goes for Doom, Lemmings and the same even goes for The Lost Vikings (which I was obsessed with as a kid - I spent a year trying to crack one level!).
I love the original Half Life series of games (Half Life is my favourite game ever - with Half Life 2 being somewhere nearby) but in my opinion this is where the gaming industry started going wrong. Everybody was out to create the 'new' Half Life and got the idea horrendously wrong - focusing on the wrong elements like the (then groundbreaking) graphics engine and the flashier stuff. The fun was in the gameplay and the challenge. I see no challenge in a game where you can get shot at, go and suck your thumb in the corner for five minutes and then recover, rather than doing it old-school and battling your way through a hoarde with only one point of health remaining. Halo - to me - has done the same thing with trying to copy Half Life, but getting some of the more essential elements right and whilst I can't pretend to be a fan of the series, when a game of actual substance arrives, it rightly gets lauded in praise.
There's just far too much 'me too!' gaming out there. The rubbish sells. Like Hollywood releasing endless sequels (which Saw movie are we on now?) with none of the innovation of the predecessor; I see the gaming industry going the same way. Notable exceptions notwithstanding, the game industry is sterile. For every Guitar Hero and Halo out today, there are dozens of Sonic Unleasheds and Blood in the Sands.
Oh. And for the best night in: check out Zero Punctuation. The man is a general hotbed of hilarity.
Incidentally, I was a massive Morrowind player for a good few years. If you trace back Oblivion to its roots, the game is over fifteen years old and survives largely in the same form. Oblivion is not a new game. It's very good, but it's a development of an old concept. Arena and Daggerfall were great (I played Daggerfall as a kid - scared the lights out of me, as did Doom (I was five and playing Doom, mind)) Morrowind ranks as second on my favourite games of all-time list, but Oblivion is nothing new. So sorry, that argument doesn't hold. Neither does GTA IV. Expansion of a decade-old concept. Halo - like I've said - is a very good Half Life-inspired shooter, but rooted in the nineties and Dead Rising is a direct homage to the George Romero zombie flicks - which date back to 1968! The only 'modern' game you've cited there is Gears of War - which is one of the better modern series. But sorry, you're just not getting your facts straight. The games you're praising there as 'modern' are in fact at least a decade old - with the one exception. The only really 'great' new games I've seen in the last five years have been Guitar Hero and Braid - both of which have utterly original concepts. Other than that? All treading old ground.
Just because games are "treading old ground" it doesn't make them worse than their predecessors, yes the some of the ideas may be essentially the same but the content of the game differs greatly (with the exception of ww2 and1 games). Take Mass Effect for example, you actually decide what you do, you can end up in many different positions at the end of the game, you can kill certian characters, also making the storyline different.
Old school games (tetris, pacman ect) don't even have a storyline at all, thats what makes them (in one aspect) inferior to madern games.I love Pacman, supermario, warrio, luxor, but they are just good for some mindless fun once in a while. They lack the depth that most modern games have got. If you play Mass Effect all the way through (which I reccomend you do) you will see that the level games are at today are amazing. You actually feel sorry for the people that die (I know thats sad, but a lot of other people think that aswell). That is why I would take modern games over old games any day.
Have you ever played an Xbox live or PS3 network game? That is a serious thrill, playing (in most cases killing) "real" people from around the world. It really gets your heart rate going sometimes, when you pull off a massive kill streak. Do old games have this? I don't think so, you can have a few players at once, but not the thousands upon thousands of people that play Xbox live and PS3 network. There is yet another reason why modern games are better.
Also, have you seen the graphics on some of the old games, about 3 pixels (or whatever the termanology is) to someones face. Yes, sometimes the simple things are better but that is another reason to love modern games. You can immerse yourself in a game and feel like your standing right next to them or actually being that person.
So what have we got so far, better, non linear storylines, massive multiplayer capabillities (the PC is the master if MMORPGS) and better graphics. I would say, overall, modern games have outdone the oldies by a mile.