Hey, Developer, Your Game Is Great, But Does It Last?

Posted by on January 14, 2012 at 9:33 am

Right now I’m in geek heaven and there isn’t a thing you can do to pry me away from it, so don’t even try. Having just landed a prospective gig here at FleshEatingZipper and with Star Trek Online going Free-to-Play in a matter of days, my time in the realm of reality is, I fear, drawing to an end.

But despite my brain’s ascent into a heavenly state, my heart is still a raging bull. As a Scotsman I always have something to be angry about, namely the cold, but it’s come to a point where video games and I are about to have a falling out… and it’s all because of Red Dead Redemption.

RDR is one of very few games I’ve bought on release day, still own, still play and it’s for one simple reason: games just don’t have enough replay value anymore. I’m sure any gamer can attest that this is a well-known and oft pointed out fact but I’m pointing it out again for a bloody good reason – no one is listening!

Having recently booted up RDR for the first time in months, after the haze of Battlefield 3 and the festive period died down, I found it to be as immediately enjoyable as the last time I played it. But then I found myself asking another question: ‘why is the Battlefield haze over?’ Wasn’t it supposed to be one of the best shooters of all time and the one to knock Call of Duty off its stupid perch? Well if it was, why do I find it boring after only a few months? It’s a great looking game, it’s great to play, but people are turning away in droves. On one occasion my gaming partner Graeme and I found ourselves in a four v two game of Conquest! What the hell is that all about!? Where is everyone?

If a game like Red can still capture my imagination after all this time, why can’t every game be like that? Is it laziness on the part of developers? Is it trying too hard to please the never ceasing demands of the online market? Whatever the excuse is it’s time that studios pulled thumb from ass and started making great, lasting games again.

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