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Old 01-24-2007, 12:34 PM   #76
Intrepid Homoludens
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Originally Posted by sethsez View Post
Basically, the games are aware of the genre's benefits and limitations and are working with them in intelligent and creative ways.
Given that, how possible would it be to experiment, thus not only exploiting the genre's benefits but also stretching its [perceived] limitations? I think that would up the possibility for fresh new aesthetic and gameplay experiences, regardless of platform, and would help diversify these kinds of games. Wouldn't cost any extra, particularly if the devs were very creative, inventive, and resourcful.

The problem there, however, is that there's less room for distinction... most games in that subgenre don't try to go for anything beyond "pretty pictures with a bunch of puzzles," which is fine for some people and isn't a bad thing in and of itself, except the very series that spawned this subgenre actually had a great deal of interesting lore and culture behind it that sets it apart from the rest, even today. There's nothing wrong with the whole "lone guy in a mysterious and picturesque place has to solve a ton of puzzles" motif, but it's just as subject to laziness as any other type of game.
Would that have to do with the [comparatively] low ceiling of production budget? It may also involve less talented writers and developers who can't be bothered with birthing a deep, rich explorable world (by that I don't just mean visually, but also narratively, historically, and/or mythologically), so they instead churn out a predictable, simple story with artificially integrated puzzles and hope the player won't notice.

Quality in this case isn't just about the graphics but, more importantly, about how deep and enriching - and ultimately, memorable - that virtual world can be.
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