Doubt. In the same way that movies on PSP had this idea in mind but fell flat on it's face, games are strongly tied to the format and environment in which you consume them.
FPS gaming with a keyboard and mouse isn't coming with you on your phone for the morning commute, and no amount of technology is going to change that because the main barrier is you won't want to play that game on your morning commute with a bunch of people around you, noise, and being unable to immerse yourself (even for reasons as simple as needing to remember to get off at your stop).
That said, perhaps the converse doesn't hold true, and when you flop down in front of your screen in the evening you can get into a 6h marathon of bejeweled just the same as you were playing on the train into work that morning. Streaming isn't an enabler for this though, just cross-platform builds of your chosen game and cross-format suitability for input/output methods.
>Microsoft claims Game Pass subscribers increase their overall playtime by 40%
I'd really like to see retention stats alongside this to drawn an inference, because (anecdotally), I subscribed, played the shit out of the one game I subscribed for, then cancelled my sub before the next month. I definitely look like a player with increased playtime, because I deliberately did that to play a game that would have cost $$ for just $.
PUBG and Fortnite are both wildly popular mobile games. I see people playing them on the bus all the time.
Having never played an FPS on my phone, I had to download Call of Duty to see how it worked, being a heavy kb+m FPS player in my youth.
Played a dozen or so rounds in a couple weeks. It worked surprisingly well with plenty of skill gap between the players.
A couple years ago I also tried a MOBA on my phone wondering how that could possibly work on such a small tap-input device
Turns out mobile screen + tap input game UX is well-explored and polished territory.
Now all I want to see is Crusader Kings or Europa Universalis on a phone and I'll agree that nothing is impossible.
Somewhat bizarrely, a Nintendo DS port of EU2 was also in development at some point!:
For example a pirate game would have a detailed social sim of the crew, an "FTL level" sim of the ship in combat, a "Sid M. Pirates" level sim of ship to ship combat (that is all NPC off-screen when the player character isn't in command of a ship) and a sim of baroque-era Caribbean economy. A low level sailor would just manage relationships and balance focus between categories like following orders, initiative, camaraderie, bravado and risk avoidance (each influencing how he fares in the off-screen social and "FTL combat" simulations), peppered with the occasional decision set-piece, whereas a pirate-king might decide on resource allocation and strategic city upgrades (but still not micro-manage anything but relations). The tactical level would be a much more interactive (if the PC happens to be in command) series of decisions, but still do exclusively fast-forward-to-pause timing. ("free form turns", imho mobile games should be as passive as a book whenever you put down the phone)
The pattern could be applied to anything that has a somewhat limited set of characters for the social layer (the CK2 courtier population might still be a bit heavy for mobile...) and involves separable tactical and strategic layers. The original idea came from the question of how one could do a WW2 air combat sim on mobile that is deeper than Sid M. Ace Patrol but unlike IL-2 still without a dexterity factor. The player would balance focus between e.g. spotting, engine operation and navigation when on mission but not in combat and during engagement between aiming, evading, energy conservation, situational awareness and so on (plus a series of decision points that might be seconds or minutes apart depending on situation). The social layer might involve storytelling decisions like choosing to "accidentally" miss an emergency scramble after a night of heavy stress relief or flying under the influence.
With a bottomless fantasy budget, this kind of game would come with full 3D modeling for illustrating every sim layer, but only ever show a single frame at each interaction, representing the state of the simulation (which is actually closer to board-game abstraction than to 3D physics) in a semi-randomized way. Reasoning: animations quickly get old no matter how good they are and single frames can be doused in nice-looking postprocessing that would cause unsightly artifacts if animated. An endless pool of informative flavor illustrations, not the usual showing-off of GPU power and production effort.
You might be interested in Stellar Monarch (https://store.steampowered.com/app/446000/Stellar_Monarch/). I haven't played it (no linux version) so can't recommend it but it seems much more focused on role playing as emperor sitting in your throne room. I think a successful mobile CK2 would look more like this and less like the desktop map staring one.
1. Each tier is its own game,
2. The games are not independent
As a simple, two-game, example. Imagine a strategy game such as Shogun (turn-based strategy). When the players kn that game start conflicts that opens up a match for FPS-type players to join. The outcome of the battle will depend on the FPS-player performance while the match-up is skewed depending on the relative forces deployed by the generals.
Maybe cities are maintained by more Minecraft-esque players, while the eye in the sky can submit tasks down below for resources, certain buildings, etcetera.
What would be in it for the player extras on the tactical level? It's hard enough for level design and matchmaking to compose a match of random internet players when there are no further constraints, forcing the parameters of one players strategy session on top of that problem can only make it worse.
"RPG sim" would aim for the opposite, creating a uniform UX with consistent interaction pacing (even if on wildly different timescales) for all the off-screen sim layers.
Incidentally, neither of these are an FPS. Both using (or favouring, in the case of PUBG) third person, over-the-shoulder play.
However video game “genres” are kind of a mess. FPS is too broad of a label to be useful. Both CoD and Portal are “FPS” but feature wildly different pace, tone, and requirements on the player. Another example: there’s a type of “FPS” that is almost extinct because it’s only really playable on PC: the arena shooter or twitch shooter (e.g. Unreal Tournament, Quake 3). These are simply not playable on console/mobile because the speed and precision of inputs required to play them is beyond the inputs available.
All of this is to say that the type of “FPS” you might get on mobile won’t represent the full range of FPS experiences you can get on PC or console.
But... both technically and culturally it's not the same as a PC shooter. Similar to comparing HALO with a game like Counter Strike I guess - one summer I was bored and shot 2500-3000ish heads (Aim Botz) in one sitting but I can't imagine "practicing" PUBG mobile in a similar way.
The options to play may be increasing, but there’s no way mobile will kill the keyboard players.
The second largest streamer in Germany (I think top 20 world wide or something) regularly streams the mobile game "Clash of Clans". I've seen streams with 20k viewers and more streaming things like "Black Desert Mobile" and "Call of Duty Mobile", too.
They are separate, partitioned instances of the games though, tailored for the format.
Who plays the Bedrock Edition on PC, though?
It sort of makes sense, since anyone my age or older didn't _really_ have access to serious mobile games growing up.
I know the games have been tweaked for the format but not by much, at least in the instance of Minecraft.
The virtual controls infuriate me but they're tapping and swiping away building some complex creations. They do this in the middle of a family social, necks bent, staring down at the screen. The only time they look away is when the iPad runs out of juice.
I see a lot of this in other fields. People will use a sub-standard workflow and think it's fine until they experience something better and at that point they realise how bad their previous workflow was.
There is a reason why pros who play with controllers never play against pros on PC in shooters. And I can easily imagine the controller pros will be much faster than swipers.
So, for just building with blocks, I can see why parents just give the kids an ipad so they don't have all the running and screaming, but it probably won't be a competitive way of playing games. I only say probably because I just can't imagine me watching someone swiping on a screen.
A game on the other hand can create a sort of rewards treadmill where no one ever really 'finishes'. A book can't adjust rewards in real time to fuel addictive behavior.
Books don't really exploit gambling mechanics, which is what can drive some of the most pernicious addictions.
It's literally virtual building blocks (+ hack and slash combat and crafting and exploration etc). Would you have the same level of derision for kids who sink thousands of hours into playing with lego? Kids have a lot of spare time to kill.
From the way some people talk about video games on here sometimes I assume they think the android/ios market is representative of all of gaming (even then there's plenty of good "buy once" mobile games without microtransactions, the discoverability on the stores is just godawful - presumably to steer people towards more profitable crap rather than what's actually good).
This applies to basically every form of media prior to the internet—movies, TV shows, music albums, etc.
I personally prefer games that are one-and-done too, and this is partly why. I want to immerse myself in a virtual world for a little while and then move on with my life and/or find a brand new virtual world; I'm not looking for an endless rabbit hole.
> This essay will focus on two particularly striking mid-nineteenth-century examples of the complex relationships that unite the writer, readers, and editor of a serial. The first one is a French novel. Les Mystères de Paris, by Eugène Sue, which was serialized over a year and a half in 1842-43 in the Paris daily Le Journal des Débats Politiques et Littéraires, which translates literally as the Journal of Political and Literary Debates; the second is Uncle Tom's Cabin, by Harriet Beecher Stowe, which first appeared in the antisîavery weekly, the National Era, between 1851 and 1852.
> My first point is that in the case of both works, apart from the fact that they aimed at social reform and were tremendously popular and violently criticized, their respective readers played a role in giving final form to each novel, particularly in terms of length. I will then examine the locus of the discussion that is being carried on between the readers and the writer. In Stowe's case, since she was writing far from Washington, where the National Era was based, the conversation between the reader and the writer was carried on in the columns of the Era itself. In Sue's case, the correspondence between reader and writer was mostly conducted via private letters, for reasons I will go into later. Sue kept more than three hvmdred of the letters he received while writing Les Mystères; those letters have now been edited and published. As can be imagined, they provide a rare and invaluable insight into the interaction between reader and writer during the publication of a serial.
How do you fix the distance between me and Google?
It's possible that Stadia might be "good enough" for casual gaming (and granted, that's a very large market segment), but I don't think it will ever be good enough for anyone who is sensitive to latency.
Indeed, I found this recently out in a double-blind kind of way, when running at 165hz. I had to take out my GPU to fix the fan, so I wanted to try playing some demanding games on my integrated Intel GPU. I switched settings to the lowest (along with the game itself auto downgrading settings). After I put my GPU back, I put all the settings back, or so I thought. I was feeling some input lag and the mouse a little "floaty" but thought I just imagining it for a day or two. Afterwards I checked settings and lo behold, VSync was on.
I was surprised that I could tell the difference when running at 165hz and 165 fps.
That is to say, on my 60Hz monitor, I don't feel much difference between 60 FPS and anything above with vsync off. But if I go from from 70FPS (vsync off) to 60 FPS (vsync on), it's yarrgh unplayable, as far as first person shooters go.
Variable refresh rate is one way to fix this.
All major engines (Unity, Unreal and even Godot) provide 2 different mechanisms for callbacks in your scripts: A callback before each rendered frame and a callback before each physic step (Update() and FixedUpdate() in Unity).
Now, physics always run in a fixed time step. Usually 60 times per second. If you move your player, the game will always need to wait for the next physic callback to move the entity around. Same for spawning projectiles and or checking hitscan weapons with raycasts. You always need to wait.
In this case, when V-Sync is on an your screen updates at 60Hz per second everything is fine. But on a screen with 144Hz, there is inevitable input lag.
Can someone tell me, how on earth can this be improved by disabling V-Sync? It's basically not possible to reduce input lag in this scenario.
I know there are ways to hide the lag through Input Prediction and Entity Interpolation, but those are necessary band-aids for multiplayer games, where you accept lag which is already an order of a magnitude larger than local input lag. And for single-player games? If you introduce physics your oh-so-nice 1000 Frames per Seconds are basically useless. But please tell me, if I missed something.
Interp and extrapolation do not delay your input. Interp fills in lag time with predicted movement for other player characters to hide 50ms+ of lag from the player. Your client side input still exists and is updated client side in realtime. It may get corrected by lag after the fact. Your input is not delayed to match their lag.
E.g. Dota 2 and CSGO servers in Europe have <40ms ping for most people. Local lag should be up to some 16ms from a 60Hz display plus 1ms from a 1000Hz mouse/keyboard, half of that on average. If the hardware is bad, it could easily be some extra 30ms from the display and maybe 16ms from the mouse/keyboard -- think 125Hz poll rate and bad debounce implementation.
Many gamers think they can feel differences in such small ranges of milliseconds... and maybe some can. I bet its not very many though.
I would love to see results of a blind test.
Edit: Freesync/G-sync is an attempt to eliminate tearing AND latency. Unfortunately, this often requires a higher response time on many monitors. For example, on my simracing setup with a Samsung CHG90, you can't both enable freesync and the fastest response time on the monitor. I opt for the faster response time as it just feels faster and most of the time I don't notice the tearing.
Considering those last-mile edge devices often cost in the tens of thousands of dollars and use a lot of power, including a few hundred ARM cores isn't a huge cost increase for the benefit it provides.
You're not going to get a lot of gaming done on ARM cores, when the games Stadia is trying to sell are built for x86 and x64.
Games that run on ARM devices (Fortnight, Minecraft) can already run on Stadia's end user hardware (phones, low-end computers, even many android-based smart TVs), and don't require streaming infrastructure.
Stadia DOES solve those problems... over a particular range of conditions - and its a respectably wide range. It can't heal shitty internet though, but who said it can?
That's a gorgeous game that probably deserves a big screen experience. But the convenience of being able to play anytime, anywhere trumps the cumbersomeness of sitting before a TV, switching everything on, and using a controller.
People are playing games on their phones on trains and buses and cars all day every day. Mouse and Keyboard FPS games have given way to the control pads on phone touchscreens.
One benefit of being so old and traveled is that I can predict the future more reliably than 40 years ago. Look to dense urban centers for entertainment consumption efficiency and life hacks and you are looking at the future of the culture, even if another wave breaks that pattern a short time later.
I agree as well though, keyboard and mouse is the superrior interface for me.
It took like 20 minutes for the game to copy from the disc to internal storage (luckily her Xbox had some free space!), and then it spent another 10 or so downloading an update/patch.
Back when I remember playing Sega, Nintendo, etc. (even Xbox 360, which was the last console I owned), it was a matter of plugging in a cartridge/disc, turning on the system, and playing the game after a few boot screens.
In the end, I only got about 20 minutes of time to play the game since it was night and I had to be up early to help the kids. The experience didn't make me anxious to buy a modern gaming system.
Sorry to hear it was not an enjoyable evening.
With the higher resolutions many TVs support, there's only so much bandwidth and memory headroom to support textures that big, and DVD drives just don't have the seek speed to support. Heck, in the 360 generation we were carefully laying out files broken apart and spaced so the platter would be under the read head at just the right time to reduce that latency.
As for the updates... well, I'm intimately familiar with why patching the four concurrent titles is they way it is. I have hear our feedback was incorporated into a new update system. It's been personally frustrating, when Microsoft/Bungie pioneered the Play-While-Install concept all the way back in Halo 2 Vista. We'll see!
The feedback in this post is my own, and is not meant to reflect that of my employer 343 Industries.
Some games patch very poorly due to Steam's update mechanism. Path of Exile is notorious for this, to the point many download the standalone client instead. The issue is that it uses one big file for data and this interacts poorly with steam (a tiny patch will take half an hour to apply after downloading, even on SSD).
However, the install times are still annoying. I really wish more games had play-while-install features. That being said, Steam downloads so much faster than a PS4 installs. I have a gigabit home connection and can get pretty close to saturating it while downloading from Steam, while the PS4 is slow -- apparently due to some technical limitations of the PS4.
Regardless, never again. It's downright offensive.
It was also a matter of traveling to the store during opening hours, purchasing the game and traveling home. That is almost always less convenient than purchasing it in a UI and having it download.
What does annoy me is how steam and probably other platforms force you to install updates before you can start a game even if the game has no online features.
Tried to play Halo on his xbox one, something he played almost daily. Required an update which took maybe 10 minutes. Got in and realized we couldn't play local split screen online. Fine, he has a gaming pc, let's fire that up and play with his Rift.
Pc has an update, then steam needed some kind of update, and Oculus did, and then the damn game we wanted to play had it's own update. We just sat there laughing as all in all it took an hour from when we sat down to actually playing something.
If you're not playing regularly, the amount of updates that can happen are insane.
If she has a game in, I start it as well, same reason.
I like the idea that they are both getting security and/or bug fixes (I'm looking at you, Bethesda) but yeah damn, it's a pain to wait an hour to start playing anymore.
But really. Every 3 weeks when I get time to play I spend 40~ minutes updating the game on PS4 because the patch sizes are gigabytes and the harddisk is slow.
The situation is only /slightly/ improved on a dual boot setup but then it’s also complaining about windows updates too, so not much time is actually won there.
It's not a huge deal if automatic updates work as expected. I've have too many times where my Playstation fails to auto-update and I'm stuck waiting an hour+ for an update.
The problem is latency.
In a world where I am not even happy with the latency, or delay on most of the Code Editor, Keyboard, Screen, Display etc. And Gaming Display Monitor being 120Hz and trending towards 240hz+. We are not even anywhere close to solving latency issues in a local environment, let alone one that is separated by a fibre Optic.
And I not sure about "dreaded" the 20min update, on a decent Internet connection, most of the time is no longer in the network, but CPU decompressing the Data and installing it. But they way update are package are still optimise for minimal bandwidth, not minimal user time.
I dont think the problem with Gaming industry is Distribution or Delivery with Cloud Gaming. It is with the forever increase in Asset Prices. Middleware Engine helped Software Gaming Development cost to stabilise. But the Asset, especially Graphics will need ways to dramatically reduce its time and cost.
Actually, this is more or less solved. https://parsecgaming.com/ works really well over a local network. I use a raspberry pi as a thin client to stream games to my tv from a windows vm in my closet. I cant even tell a difference. Its not just for games either; its basically a gpu accelerated remote desktop.
They claim it works really well for remote servers (they even let you lease environments I think) too. For less intensive games, it probably works fine, but for more latency sensitive games, Im sure you can feel the lag.
I honestly don't understand how anyone can say this with a straight face. I've tried multiple solutions over a local gigabit network, literally just streaming from my gaming PC upstairs to the living room PC, using Steam streaming, Nvidia streaming, and while good, they are very clearly being streamed. Especially in high-detail or darker scenes the artifacts around low-contrast areas are horrendous - it feels like watching a movie rather than playing a game. And even when playing locally the latency is still too high to play racing games for example, I just couldn't get used to it.
One of my gaming friends who is a big fan of Stadia loves it because it means that even though they travel a lot, they will be able to play [enter big aaa pc game] from the comfort of their hotel room (they travel a lot).
Personally, I think I might be tempted to use stadia for another reason : I love FPSs but I have abandoned pc gaming in favor of consoles. I will try to use Stadia in order to play Doom eternal : this way I can play with a mouse and keyboard without having to invest the time, money, space and energy to build a gaming pc.
I used to have a cheaper laptop back in the olden days so I subscribed to a service called OnLive. It worked like Stadia where the cloud would host and render your game and you could play it online. I loved it! I wish it hadn't gotten bought out and canceled. Doesn't work for certain types of games, obviously, but it's great for most casual things.
Obviously not my thing but we can’t ignore the rest of the world.
Fortnite on mobile says otherwise
There are many games where these aspects aren’t core to the game but there are for sure many where they are.
I was pretty surprised by PUBG’s success in the mobile space - Then again I sunk an immense amount of time into Ring of Elysium when it came out on PC and that was in many ways mobile-esque in gameplay and visuals.
So there’s probably more crossover potential than I acknowledged in the earlier post. I think a lot of my opinion on the limits of cross-platform (multiplayer) gaming was formed back when Quake 3 got cross-play between PC and Dreamcast. It was an absolute bloodbath.
My generation (born in early 70's) was the first to really come up with access to video games pretty much as a given. We had space invaders etc in the arcades (or wherever else they could fit a cabinet), hand-held Nintendo and basic home consoles in primary school and then of course came the boom with PC, PS, X-Box and all that followed.
But a lot of people only a few years older than me are just as dismissive about games now as they were then - this is kids' stuff, a waste of time and money. I'm not an obsessive gamer, but I do play every now and then and I absolutely see games as just another option on the entertainment landscape.
And being that older people weren't into them, I guess I'd always had the thought in the back of my mind that games were something you grew out of, like binge drinking or not caring about your retirement (your examples may vary). But the other day I was playing with friends and I looked around at these ~50 year olds and realised we're never going to "grow out" of this - particularly if the hardware and software just keep improving the way they have.
So for me one of the big reasons that gaming will keep growing is because those older, non-gaming generations will die out, replaced by new generations who start gaming ever earlier while eventually you may find yourself playing call of duty with a platoon of 80+ year-olds.
Even games that seem "new" don't feel new. I played "Baba is You". Got maybe 50 levels in. It did have new ideas but at its core it felt like I was playing Adventures of Lolo NES from the mid 80s.
VR has added "presence" and being in new places feels novel as well as using hands instead of joypads but there's so few good well made titles and I'm sure that novelty will wear off as well.
I've tried to compare this to movies and TV. I'm not tired of movies and TV. I think the biggest difference is games are about the game, movies and TV are about the story. Games can have good stories but the majority are pretty crap and generally the more story the less game. I don't generally play for the story.
But among all the games that tried to challenge this in the last 10-15 years, Disco Elisium did it the best. It's not just a good story in a shape of a game: it's a very engaging gameplay, built very organically around a story and it's world and characters.
ZA/UM is absed in Estonia.
It's promising that there's many indie games that really push the frontiers of the gaming experiences one can have. E.g. This War of Mine and Firewatch were really big experiences for me, in terms of what stories a game can tell while being quite novel on the gameplay front.
And sure, I also play a lot less than I used to. But there are still fantastic games out there worth playing. I loved Hollow Knight and Cuphead and Hyper Light Drifter. And they all were created by people who grew up with the same games as I did.
When I was a kid they were simple and clumsy. I hit puberty in the 80s as games started to come into their own and the industry formed a bit of an identity. In my 20's (the 90's) there was this flurry of activity and games started to be a bit cool and not just for kids and geeks.
By my 30's, games had started making a bit of money and the industry got more professional. Now I'm in my 40's and gaming is kind of bloated and complacent and compromised, but still capable of amazing things, much more amazing than 20, 30 or 40 years ago.
Plus gaming is one of our generation's biggest contributions to culture. Really, it's that and hip hop. Everything else is just a sub genre, but those are two sensational contributions, imo.
For examples, try Paris and Sapienza missions in Hitman 2016. Or GTA 5, which will be an amazing snapshot of what 2010s were like in the US.
1) even if it's entertainment, I think the deep value is .. as a kid thing. It's not dismissive, I just think that gaming value has limits. It's a dreamy world you interact with and that fits the younger brain. As adults you'd rather master the real world more.
2) I find games today not much more original than in the past, it plateau-ed somehow  and they're mostly selling more technical oomph to justify new things.
 to be honest I interact very lightly with games, only a cousin younger than I show me some stuff, this plus the fads you can hear about online.
Do you really think a PS5 game will be that much more enjoyable than a PS2 game ? The other question .. well you answered it. You and your friends are still into them.
Can be, absolutely.
I played Read Dead Redemption 2 last year. There's a wild west cowboy outlaw game in there somewhere with a storyline that you can finish, but what completely blew my mind is how stunningly beautiful it is, how beautiful the world you're riding around in is, and how ugly human encroachment on nature is. Because as time progresses in the game, the frontier moves a little bit further, more trees are felled, more clearings made, more houses built, more railway tracks are laid, more humans, more civilization, more stinking cities.
You absolutely could not make a game like that on a PS2. You need a 4K screen and hi-res textures and HDR lighting to really make the world pretty, to really make you care about that world.
I played Zelda: Breath of the Wild on the Switch as well. It's also an open-world game, and because it has infinite draw distance, they've managed to craft a world where no matter where you stand, you can see something interesting in the distance. I have never played a game that made me be so excited to explore and to get sidetracked as that game. The actual gameplay is also expertly bite-sized, so it doesn't matter if you play for 15 minutes or 15 hours, you still have the same sense of progression.
You absolutely could not make a game like that on a GameCube. You need hardware enough to do a seamless open world with infinite draw distance and no loading screens, otherwise the experience just doesn't work, just wouldn't be able to show you all it has to offer all at once.
1) Everything has its limits. There are seven basic plots and while human creativity has an amazing ability to retell them in different ways, after a while you definitely start to see patterns. The real world is great and I definitely keep up with current affairs etc, but if you look too closely in any direction things are kind of messed up. Sometimes a dreamy world is a nice place to be, particularly if you can get there without risking too much damage to yourself.
2) I guess every art form is constrained by its boundaries - you could say that nothing much has happened in portaiture in the last 600 years. I think that story telling is getting better in gaming, and player choice and branching is definitely something that keeps pushing outwards. The whole online/collaborative scene is something that we've wanted from the start and is really only being solved satisfactorily now.
> Do you really think a PS5 game will be that much more enjoyable than a PS2 game?
Not necessarily - some old games are great, and the whole retro-gaming craze is a testament to this - but that will only feed the cumulative growth of games. People will be playing the classics and the new releases.
That book's theories should be considered critically, not as an accepted view of literature.
2) Yes and no. I think this comes around to the fact that there are only so many stories and that there have been original games but they tend not to be big. The big genres in games have been pretty well defined and while original things do get introduced, most are refinements. Also execution matters much more than original content in games and that seems to be hit and miss.
Personally I went through a period of about 15 years where I gamed very little. A time when my kids were young and work was much more demanding. I got back into gaming maybe 6-7 years back when my kids were old enough to have their own interests and I professionally became confident enough that I didn't need constant study. So it might be something that changes as you grow.
Your 1st argument could be made for watching television. Television shows also range from self-learning to toddler cartoons to historical dramas.
To me, it seems like an absolutely astonishing achievement of humanity, one of the marvels of this world. Completely mindblowing. And yet the reaction I get from a lot of people, e.g. my older relatives, but also people in their 30s and 40s, is of complete indifference - "meh, games are for kids". I struggle to understand that.
Gaming got me into programming (mods are fun).
This can be typically said about the mainstream AAA market but much less so about indie games from small teams.
The PS5 will be the first console to support VR at launch. Thats a huge difference. VR games are light night and day compared to flat screen gaming.
TV is something I can have on while I work on responsibilities around the house (dishes, cooking, putting things away, for example), while eating dinner, and in the background while I'm working on graphic design or programming for various personal projects.
I can't do those things and play games at the same time, like I can with TV. Sure I could watch other people play games via Twitch, but that just tends to annoy me because those people waste so much time doing what I wouldn't do, or trying to figure things out, or saying dumb crap to try to gain an audience, so I've never really gotten into it (I know I'm in the minority there).
I do still play games, but it's a lot less time than it used to be.
You say that your gaming time has declined. Has your time watching tv declined comparably? Which of the two - gaming or tv - would you say is more important in your life?
My gaming has declined to zero, and my time watching TV has increased greatly. TV is much easier to make into a shared experience than video games. You can also find informative non-fiction TV, while nearly all games are fiction with relatively simple plots.
I think this article cherrypicks and makes all kinds of wild extrapolations to get to the unwarranted conclusion that gaming will "take over." The most glaring in my mind it doesn't address the kinds of lifestyle changes that happen as people age, that are extremely relevant to the overall uptake of media like video games.
Case in point: modern console games have been trying to avoid pushing loot box mechanics as much as possible. (mobile gacha games are a bit more complicated, but even those have been made substantially less greedy)
"AAA" games are MASSIVE undertakings of world building, art production, coding, integration, and, of course, financing.
Very similar to movies and, well, goddamn everything of any complexity in our economy, a cartel has formed.
There are only a handful of AAA "studios/producers".
While there are outstanding single player narrative experiences leveraging the format to further the narrative, there's nothing like a good TV show or movie for joint attention.
When enjoying a narrative with friends or a loved one many people will not want to pause to argue furiously over what dialogue choice to make or how to deal with a moral dilemma.
Games are a fantastic medium. But there have limitations, just as every other medium does.
Remember when radio was going to make the written word obsolete? Or TV kill off sound-only formats and movie theaters?
The medium is an integral part of the message. Video games are a new medium that will be added to the mix, not replace it, just as every media before it.
I think there is definitely a space for interactive movie style games.
I want Man of Medan on Stadia!
I think we're living in a golden age to be honest.
If I had to pick one of them to actually make this complaint against it would be computer (AI) generated content optimized for clicks on video websites (think kids videos on youtube).
I have no moral issue with time spent on games. My son plays quite a lot and I think that's fine.
I have zero interest in them though. There are a lot of reasons for this, but they aren't moral reasons - just preferences. I'd note that this also reflect in my lack of interest in board/card games.
I know a lot of people like me, from all age groups - they'll watch video content but have no interest in playing games. I think that the article author misses that.
 The moral status of people who play games involving killing, rape, etc. may seem irrelevant, but there's a paper I read a while ago which argues that under a deontological system, playing such games may be immoral because of their content - a pro tanto wrong. I suppose the argument has less weight as most lay people are consequentialists or moral relativsits.
 "This paper is concerned with whether there is a moral difference between simulating wrongdoing and consuming non-simulatory representations of wrongdoing. I argue that simulating wrongdoing is (as such) a pro tanto wrong whose wrongness does not tarnish other cases of consuming representations of wrongdoing. While simulating wrongdoing (as such) constitutes a disrespectful act, consuming representations of wrongdoing (as such) does not." https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10676-018-9463-7
I think even most deontologists would consider the deontological status of participation in a game depicting/simulating certain subject matter as at least sometimes significantly different from the deontological status of actually participating in the act, a distinction similar to use/mention distinctions.
Sure, a set of moral axioms on which those are categorically equivalent is possible, but I don't think it's common even among deontological frameworks that don't reduce to consequentialism.
True, that's as much as the paper argues, too. My point wasn't that most deontologists would consider it immoral, only that someone has argued (quite convincingly) that it can be.
The moral argument you point to there seems limited to violent FPS-style games - unless you consider Chess to be deontologically questionable (and surely these concerns are increased in games like poker, where bluffing (lying) to other humans is part of the game). It's an interesting intellectual argument, but not particularly relevant to my point.
do you have articles to read about that ?
There is a huge population of people who are mobile gamers and it’s not the demographic of 10-20 year olds. It’s middle aged folks.
- emotional investment. Experiences like the last of us are much greater than any critically acclaimed tv show imo. And this is because of the limitations of the tv medium. A video game gets you more emotionally invested because you are active when playing. Perhaps interactive movies are a compromise.
- boardgames, websites and UI. Remember back then when all websites were using flash and all looked different? It was pretty cool. Yet you still had to learn a new UI for every website you visited. Nowadays all websites seem to exhibit the same UI and everybody (even my grandmother) is browsing the web. A header, a nav bar, a home button, a register button, a login button, etc. I feel the same about boardgames. When you get into a new boardgame you know you’ll have to 1/ read the rules 2/ play one game to learn and 3/ profit. Videogames are the opposite. Each game is a totally new experience, even in terms of menu or configuration or controller setup. Your friend has a different console? You’ll have to learn a new controller. It’s way harder to invest yourself in videogames, or to start a new videogame.
Investing heavily into a long running video game is more intensive than long running film. Finding the right form for those experiences that isn't totalizing in it's presentation could help. A 3hr run and done episode of red dead might be more consumable.
> Most media categories are confined by three challenges. First is their finite length. At a certain point, you reach the last page of a book, last episode of a TV show, or end of a podcast.
This is a feature, not a bug. With the massive, coordinated attack of the attention economy on everyone's focus, I predict a new wave of burned victims who voluntarily eject from "hedonistic treadmill" type games where you play all day long and never reach the end in order to go back to completing wholesome experiences.
There's a whole generation to still discover what an end game screen looks like, but once they've seen a great and hard earned one, it's hard to go back on that satisfaction.
In the former kind of games, indeed infinite length is not an advantage, but I think in the latter two kinds, it is.
Background updating should be a thing. It is available on every major console. It never works. That can be fixed.
Additionally, there have been rumblings about where innovation is going to surface in the next generation of consoles. One of the more consistent themes is the handling of downloads; it'll be easier for developers to "shard out" their game into the components that, say, a particular mode or level or segment need, in order to get players into the game as quickly as possible. It may be a 50gb game, but you'll only have to download 3gb of it to get started.
We're seeing some of this on the XB1/PS4 today, but usually its very binary: Ready to Play, then Full Download. Next gen consoles will get much more specific and optimized. I believe (don't quote me on this) Sony has outright said that their goal is: you buy a game and you play it instantly, with no cloud rendering/streaming; just really smart handling of downloads and packaging.
The most ironic thing about gaming over the past generation is that games always used to be like this: you buy a disk/cartridge, and you're playing. Nowadays, you buy a disk, the disk has to install to the drive, then there's a day 1 update; its a total mess. We'll see how the next generation looks, but I doubt very much the situation will look much better for people with bad internet. If you've got great internet though, maybe we'll be close to the way it looked in the past.
> more about creating an environment that audiences never want to leave and which constantly sucks them back in
Is basically why I decided to never play a game again. I just won't.
And also why I am getting stressed when I see partner starting a game, cause periods of addiction and consequential sleep deprivation and all that suck not just for gamer.
The other day I was in the mood for some "Crossy Road". I had deleted it from my Kindle years ago to curb my time suck. Now it's not in the store anymore. Replaced by a new version from the same developer, "Hipster Whale", but re-branded as a tie-in with Disney characters.
The new art is flat and unremarkable. Where the original was really charming. And actual user performance is virtually unplayable. A far cry from the immortal re-playability of the original. Not to mention the ubiquitous promotional dark patters, the pernicious in-app purchase harpings, the auto play trailers with 1x1px cancel buttons that link to a store and thrash game state, loot boxes, and characters from edge IP no one has ever heard of. Instead of the original's unforgettable characters such as "Frankenstein" "Disco Zoo" and "Kimchi".
And yet this version is probably more popular than ever! With a burst of revenue to boot. If the market is speaking it really begs to question. Besides ISVs on zero budgets, who will invest in "pure" action-arcade oriented video games?
I've played both games on iOS, and I haven't noticed a performance difference between them. Also, the original still gets some new characters every so often, while Disney Crossy Road hasn't gotten new characters in two years.
Maybe because we don't all want everything "interactive" all the time.
But what I find more calming about paper newspaper and magazines is how static it is (the web could be as well of course). No ads popping, no video ads, no chance the content will be replaced with a paywall in 5 seconds. Since I arrive on different sites from Google/Twitter all the time, I never remember which ones I actually have access.
And opening the rare site that I know is open and without ads feels like a very premium experience (eg some Craig Mod writing I found on my email yesterday https://www.eater.com/2019/12/16/21003452/japan-kissaten-tra...)
Also: IRL "arriving at the thing" (say finding an interesting magazine in the doctors office) means that I can read what is inside. Unlike the internet nowadays ("you reached your monthly quote of 5 articles")
It's of course important to have the option to enjoy them by yourself at times-- but you can do this with games, too.
Nearly all visual & audio art can be presented in a game-like environment (such as a customized VR setting), so in a way a game engine is a superset of every piece of art in those categories. And they will all continue to exist, because part of art is confining your expression to a defined medium to intensify your focus on it.
Assassin's creed odyssey looks fucking outrageously good - considering it has the "whole" (compressed) ancient Greece to render. I was brought up on a PS1 (still a long way from the likes of Pacman etc.) but the progress that has been made is amazing.
> motor racing are way less fun to watch than to play a quite realistic simulator,
This is true but (good) simulator rigs are really expensive + simracing brings you to the cold hard reality that you don't have it (Max Verstappen I ain't :| )
Gaming becoming more and more popular recently has only just been detrimental to the industry as a whole as we've come to learn that shareholders are willing to sacrifice game quality for profits.
Every new release is just eye-candy and a thinly-veiled money grab while delivering shallow gameplay. It's very disheartening. Especially when you consider the fact that for the younger gamers this is all they know.
They never got a chance to see video games unaffected by lootboxes, B2P games with cash shops or "free to play" games that aren't blatantly pay to win.
Let's not even touch on the shady & dehumanizing labor practices the entire gaming industry seems normalizes.
The future of gaming is anything but positive for me. I feel like most people are mistaking the success of new technologies (AR & VR) as the success of video games. Most videos games release in the last 5 years are absolute shite and the ones that aren't are marginal at best.
Before the age of TV, you could lay on couch with eyes closed listening to radio shows. You can still do this technically even with TV shows, but it’s obviously not as good.
Watching TV is a completely passive activity, especially watching TV shows like on Netflix; maybe sports are more active watching.
TikTok is just scrolling social media, you have to keep your hand on the screen constantly to browse that corner of the Internet. And that’s really all the social networks are, a corner of the Internet. With a bunch of different people and interests promoting their own ideas or selves. You can’t lay down and passively watch it; you have to browse and control your destination.
There will always be people who simply don’t find video games amusing or prefer passive activities like laying and watching shows.
I had the opposite thought as the author earlier tonight - Netflix is taking over the world; it already did. It seems like every few days new content is showing up for people to consume; as a heavy consumer, I think part of that is because Netflix knows they are feeding the hunger and they never want you to have a night alone on the couch where you can’t find something to watch. Apple TV+ will only intensify this.
I bet there are a bunch of single, young people who have little social life and spend most of their free time watching Netflix. People of all ages and demographics, really, families too, but I guess I identify and understand the first group.
After a few days of binge watching, you feel woven with the characters and it feels like a part of your social life possibly more so than that friend you haven’t seen in months/etc. Just for a few moments until you move on to something else, you feel like you know these characters. Like you’ve lived in their little world. I’ve heard the same things about people who watch high-profile gamers play, or YouTuber fans.
So maybe the really scary thing here is that Nf, YT, gaming and other avenues make entertainment sooo cheap and sooo accessible nowadays that real, in-person relationships are being replaced by something less tangible - and much less valuable. Reminds me of the article I read a few days ago about a person listening to “pretend boyfriend pillow talk” on YouTube. Apparently these things help with feelings of loneliness but they. Just. Aren’t. Real.