Gaming Rant: Stop Boring Me
So I have this big problem: I buy games but don't finish them. My shelf is full of first person shooters, RPGs, strategy games and the like for multiple platforms, all collecting dust. This was just going to be a short blurb with a list of reasons why I never finish games, but it kind of turned into a long ass rant. I swear I'm not full of ire, I'm just bored…
Single player time-sinks are not fun anymore because I have no time to sink. I consider myself an average gamer demographic: working age adult in my twenties. That means that I have a couple of hours at most every night that I am willing to dedicate to a full screen game (as opposed to WoW, or another game where I am doing something else most of the time).
Long games need to have natural breaks built in. Usually breaks are down in the form of missions, levels, episodes and what not. Such episodes must be of reasonable length, no more than an hour or two. If I have to turn the game off to sleep or head out for an errand, I can't spend an additional half hour looking for a save point or a safe place to exit the game.
Games need better pacing. If at any point I am bored for more than an hour, there is a very high chance that I will turn the game off, set it down, and never pick it up ever again. Cut the filler crap: Artificial increases in difficulty in place of intelligent AI and design is not clever. I love a challenging game, but I don't like 30 hour long jumping puzzles, I don't like ammo starvation (if you give me a shotgun I want to use it), and I don't like final bosses so ungodly difficult that it forces you to farm for hours (I know what you all are thinking and fuck you, WoW is different). That's lazy and poor game design.
New game mechanics and devices are needed, I want innovation. Given our level of technology and the resources available to developers, I kind of expect more in terns of things like NPC interaction and play. I think that some of my malcontent towards most single player games stems from the rise in multiplayer games. Human beings, for good or bad add a completely new level of complexity to a game. As a result, computer characters often seem dry in contrast. After all, the depths of e-tards and e-drama are infinite, the depths of shitty AI are not.
I swear that the gaming industry is just as bad as the movie industry at times in terms of delivering pretty looking media with very little substance. Computer graphics by nature date themselves very fast. Take a look at some of the games that were your favorites 5 years ago. Replay them and see how many are still fun (Personally, I can probably name them on one hand. Deux Ex, Half-Life, and a few others). There's something to say though about developers who put extra attention into the art direction in a game, possibly at the expense of having a new cutting edge graphical engine. I admire that.