Simulated Wood-Grain Gaming

Susan Arendt

Nerd Queen
Jan 9, 2007
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Simulated Wood-Grain Gaming

Is gaming improving so quickly that it no longer amazes us?

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Omnific One

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Apr 3, 2010
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As someone who didn't start at the beginning of gaming, I still feel pretty amazed how far we've come since the 1990's. It's a perspective thing; if you find a random Amazonian tribal member and give them Battlefield 2, it would be the same sense of amazement as your first experience with the medium.
 

Jared

The British Paladin
Jul 14, 2009
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Reading the article makes me want to break out the Old Sonic games again
 

Onyx Oblivion

Borderlands Addict. Again.
Sep 9, 2008
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Quite a few games managed to provoke awe in me the whole way through in recent years.

Especially Okami. Which kept my jaw planted to the floor for nearly 50 hours. And then made me cry like a fucking baby:


If you played it, you remember the scene with this music. YOU REMEMBER!
 

The Lawn

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Apr 11, 2008
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I remember the first game I had that let me save.

I was speechless at the thought that the little cartridge could remember the things I had done.
 

Lucane

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Mar 24, 2008
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I wouldn't say there happening to fast just that they may not be as uniqe as they used to like Susan's example controlling what happened on the Television back then was new to gaming and everything else. Voice chat before multiplayer used it amd motion senseing was created outside of gaming as well so it's a amazing in light when it's 1st used for gaming but it fades quicker than things that didn't formerly exsist at all.

Well that how I see it.
 

Violence

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Dec 3, 2009
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I'm nostalgic too, but I think it's not so much development and technology as it is the games themselves now coming so rapid-fire. Games are now being released and marketed today the same way as Hollywood movies. With so many options to choose from, it's easy to get ''lost in the shuffle'' so-to-speak.

If I ever have a kid, I'm going to simulate the evolution of gaming in my living room.
 

Elonas

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Apr 16, 2009
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Onyx Oblivion said:
Quite a few games managed to provoke awe in me the whole way through in recent years.

Especially Okami. Which kept my jaw planted to the floor for nearly 50 hours. And then made me cry like a fucking baby:


If you played it, you remember the scene with this music. YOU REMEMBER!
Off Topic: I haven't played it in aeons. Could you toss me a spoiler tagged reply with what happens :D?

On Topic: I see what you mean, having only been a gamer for near enough 12 years, there really has been a massive explosion in awesome looking things. Even in the past few years there have been changes. For example, I recently bought Far Cry 2, the graphics were pretty, but not jaw-dropping. But at the time, they were utterly astounding.

If you've read the article, or simply heard of the analogy, it's like the boiling the frog. If you dump him into hot water, he'll jump out. If he is placed into a warm pot of water and it is slowly heated, etc.
 

RhombusHatesYou

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Mar 21, 2010
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I think being around for the emergence of a new technology has a more noticable impact than growing up surrounded by it. I was going to say a more profound impact but as I thought about it I came to the conclusion that it was incorrect, the impact is essentially the same but by having memories of 'the time before' the impact is more personally noticable. The drawback to that is people who can remember these times can come to view them through rose coloured nostalgia.

With games, when it comes to purely technological progression I think it is harder to amaze people as we've come to expect, if not outright demand, this progression. Combined with the promises made by companies it's that most often we're locked into a 'satisfaction/disappointment' system, where if something meets both our expectations and the promises made to us we're satisfied but otherwise we get bitchy about it all. Very little comes out these days that both exceeds our expectations and either meets or exceeds the promises made to us (depends on the promises), so of course, very little amazes us (at least in a good way).
 

Onyx Oblivion

Borderlands Addict. Again.
Sep 9, 2008
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Elonas said:
Off Topic: I haven't played it in aeons. Could you toss me a spoiler tagged reply with what happens :D?
Ammy...kinda dies. And then comes back.
 

Avaholic03

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May 11, 2009
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Well written article. I think you could also add that the new technology has limited our ability to use imagination to fill in the blanks. I doubt many kids were bothered by "bad" graphics back then, because they could fill in the areas between the pixels with some good old fashioned imagination. It was as immersive (or perhaps more so) than current generation games. I think in some ways, new technology actually takes away from the overall "awe factor".
 

Zetona

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Dec 20, 2008
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I'm reminded of the first time I played Half-Life 2. I had never played anything remotely like it, and I was blown away by the atmosphere. The graphics, the writing, and the voice acting helped make the world seem so real. I was blown away.

The only other game to loosen my jaw like that was Flower. I was amazed both by the beauty of the environments and the motion controls.
 

ZippyDSMlee

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Sep 1, 2007
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Um no since gaming has become console centric graphic boundaries are not pushed like they were, we have to wait on longer hardware cycles for any real improvement on graphics and I am fine with that its just with the focus on story and design there is less and less focus on solid and deep mechanics.

As far as I see things gaming started to become stagnant in the late 90s and we are still stagnant a decade later, big happy happy joy joy its gained a larger demographic but its moot if the core of he industry is still as shallow and childish as ever......

Since the early 2000 I been waiting on gaming to get back to mechanics and interaction on the mainstream and still surprised to see the use of vain and sometimes shallow graphic designs supersede everything but writing....and now I see a trend for better writing(hevy rain=better writing and the return of FMV games to the mainstream niche) less emphasis on graphics and more stagnation and back pedaling on mechanics,interaction,control,control layout as so not to be too complected for the wider consoletard and non gamer demographics........

Gaming is like new music, its all pop they just call it different things to keep people from paying attention.....

God I am getting old......
 

Shamus Young

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Jul 7, 2008
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Susan Arendt said:
I'm not one of these people who has nostalgia glasses permanently affixed to their heads, refusing to accept that anything modern could possibly compare to the glorious days of yore.
Good! That's MY job!

This was a wonderful article.
 

blankedboy

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Feb 7, 2009
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I guess all kids go through that stage of awe, I certainly did when I first got Super Mario 64 on an emulator for my Windows 98 computer back when I was 4. Once you get past that stage, you just get used to it. Then you play for other aspects, hopefully gameplay :mad:
 

Snotnarok

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Nov 17, 2008
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I'm always impressed with how technology works, I was re-hooking up my consoles to my TV and my Genesis was next up, it has to be hooked up as it was my first system and it just kinda has that luxury of a space in my heart. As I picked it up I realized that while this technology now is absolute retro-tastic and most people just don't care about it anymore, this device (or devices as the Sega CD is attached) was a technological marvel at one point. I was born in 86 so I didn't get to see the other consoles really so my story is a bit further up in the console line up so take this for what it is I guess.

When the Genesis/Mega Drive came out the only real competitor (a huge one at that) was the Nintendo Entertainment System, which wasn't half as impressive tech wise. I'm sure some read that with some glares but that's not how I mean it, the NES was incredible when it came out, and it made some HUGE marks in gaming that saved gaming from the "crash". The Genesis with a wider color range, faster games and bigger adventures came out later as the next step and it was quite a jarring thing for many as like the NES to the 2600 and such (the same goes for the SNES vs the NES, just so you get what I mean). It's another big step in technology and they actually cost at one point a decent amount of money like current consoles cost. But now the Genesis, like the NES doesn't mean much to many, it's just that console they emulate via Virtual Console or they mess around with, an old device that can't hold a candle to the new systems.

At least that's how I see other people view it, to me the older systems are just as valid as the new systems because most games on the older systems just are not done anymore like games are now. They're vastly different and miss the charm or appeal, whatever you'd like to call it.

Sonic and Mario for me will always be the two rivals with great big adventures that were better on plastic cartridges than their disc incarnations as are many other game heroes.

Great article, I like to see people talk about their experiences in gaming then and now, cheesy as it is, it's always fun to read.
 

Generic_Dave

Prelate Invigilator
Jul 15, 2009
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This reminds me of last year when the ISS crew had to take refuge in the escape module on the Space Station. They were almost torn apart by debris in space. And all it registered was a note on the ticker across the bottom of the screen on the 24 hour new channels. It used to be when anything happened in space it was head-line news, now it barely rates mentioning.

Its not a phenomenon restricted to games. I mean, think about Wi-Fi...we have a connectedness worldwide through the air. No connections, no wire. All the information of the internet (most of the information of the world) at your fingertips without even needing a wire. That still amazes me but is also so common place its barely regarded.
 

matrix3509

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Sep 24, 2008
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Part of it is that the changes are becoming more subtle and delicate, a nuance of character movement or sound, as opposed to huge sweeping sea changes like the ability to save your game. (Yes, that was a big deal once.)
And yet here we are in the year 2010 and the majority of videogames still cornhole us with save points.

I'm one of those people who believe that while technology may have gotten better over the years, the quality of games, sadly, has not improved.