"With great power, there must also come great responsibility" -- Uncle Ben, Spider-Man
"With great power and great responsibility, there must also come walls of text." -- Far too many videogames
It's atrocious, too. Last night, I was forced to read my way through the opening of a game released only a week ago. The game's gloriously rendered prison cell bars would likely have even the rottenest of holding cells in jealous fits, yet mere moments after I moved beyond those gnarled steel beams, I was assailed by a text tutorial of such ridiculous length that it would've benefitted from a rabbit-ear feature.
"This is next-gen?" I wondered aloud.
We can polish graphics to such a sheen that even the most mundane objects wrap their tendrils securely around our eyes and never let go, yet integrating a tutorial with actual gameplay is an insurmountable task? The very thought is absurd, and doesn't exactly get me pumped to play the rest of the game. After all, if gameplay matters so little that the designers couldn't even be bothered to, you know, teach me through interactivity -- a little quirk that I hear makes games sorta cool -- then why should I expect anything better from the rest of their game? It's like popping a Porsche chassis over a Flintstones car; take the thing for a spin and your next stop will be the used-car dealership.
So, which ripe-smelling, antiquated videogame "features" do you think should be given the boot? Are there any that you'd actually like to see stick around?
Today's Roundup is all about the future -- no artifacts from 1993 here. Inside, you'll find only the latest news concerning Deus Ex 3, F.E.A.R. 2 (Yep, that's the name, now), and two separate plans to "save" PC gaming.
Shacknews: So would you say the future of the PC development is a lineup of games solely developed with the PC in mind?
Brad Wardell: Actually I wouldn't. Well, I think it will become that way if we don't clean up our act as an industry. If we don't create the same gaming environment that you already have on the consoles, where someone can go to the store and have some confidence that it's going to work on their machine, then that's going to happen.
He also discussed the gaming's industry's odd insistence on slamming the door in the faces of all pirates, regardless of whether or not they might actually purchase a product.
Really, the great thing about Wardell is that he actually counters the Piracy Question with something other than, "Uh, er, well, wanna hear about how awesome the game I'm working on is going to be?"
So grab a coffee and check out the full interview. If you don't rush out to buy an assortment of Wardell posters and some sticky tack after reading this interview, then you're clinically insane. Or you're homeless, I guess.
"When we started working on Warhead, we decided performance was a big issue," he explained. "We said, 'Guys, we're going to build a PC which has a maximum price of six or seven hundred dollars, and it has to run Warhead in high spec at an average framerate of 30'...All the milestone presentations we did for EA, for the [founding brothers] Yerlies, for the team, all the new prototypes, we showed on that machine."
The machine you'll be purchasing, then, is kind of like a printed autograph. Sure, it's not that machine, but it's a perfect replica -- plain and boxy, but with power to spare. (Except when you're running Crysis.)
* CPU: Intel Core Duo e7300 (@2.66GHz) * Video card: Nvidia 9800GT * RAM: 2GB
I won't bore you with all of the corporate/legal/uncompromisingly sexy issues that led up to Monolith not owning the name of their own game; you can read IGN's article for that. Remember, the Roundup is all about the future.
So, why is Project Origin now F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin? Because Vivendi lost their morsel of F.E.A.R. during all the hubbub of the recent Acti-Blizz merger. Monolith and Warner Bros. then dug through the carnage and snagged F.E.A.R.'s name.
Battle.Net 2.0 and StarCraft II will be “intertwined,” says Blizzard co-founder
“The next version of Battle-Net is going to launch with StarCraft II, so they’re intertwined,” Pearce told VG247.