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Popular games that were NOT good discussion

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At the end of the day we all have different taste & there will be disagreement in the appraisal of perceived popular games according to individual taste. And just because a game is considered good/the best doesn’t guarantee everyone’s going to like it….

The biggest annoyance to me is the accusation of the writing/acting being ‘mediocre’ which seems to be a popular phrase/word here applied to so many games & almost in every case with no examples/backup so all it means to me is that the accuser didn’t like the game. Also that they don’t get that games aren’t literary offerings & the writing is a small part of the balance between story, puzzles & environment etc.

It’s always interesting to read different opinions though. 
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I used the word “mediocre” so I’ll assume you were talking to me.

chrissie - 28 August 2020 12:43 PM

The biggest annoyance to me is the accusation of the writing/acting being ‘mediocre’ which seems to be a popular phrase/word here applied to so many games & almost in every case with no examples/backup

? My post explicitly named The Longest Journey and Syberia. What is it that you want, youtube links where I point out exactly which lines I think were poorly written or poorly acted?

so all it means to me is that the accuser didn’t like the game.

Right, I didn’t like the games - isn’t that what we’re discussing??? You seem to think I don’t like the games for reasons other than my stated reasons, which is a little strange. What is it that you think my real secret reasons are?

A primary reason why I didn’t like those specific games (and a great many other post-2000 adventure games) is that there is too much dialogue and the player is meant to sit staring at static screens while listening to voice actors read. In some cases these actors are technically “good” but cannot overcome the writing, length, visual boredom, and other factors that make these sequences uninteresting.

Also that they don’t get that games aren’t literary offerings & the writing is a small part of the balance between story, puzzles & environment etc.

I completely get this and it’s why I generally advocate for less dialogue and cutscenes. If you’re an adventure gamer who is NOT highly critical of lengthy dialogue sequences or most overly wordy games, it seems to me that you’re the one who doesn’t get it.

If you want to argue that it seems like I’m more against the entire design philosophy of the games mentioned, as opposed to the specifics of acting or writing, that’s a fair argument to make.

     
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Venkman - 29 August 2020 05:06 AM

I used the word “mediocre” so I’ll assume you were talking to me.

No, not specifically as the description is used by other posters so please don’t take my post personally.

My post explicitly named The Longest Journey and Syberia. What is it that you want, youtube links where I point out exactly which lines I think were poorly written or poorly acted?

Pointing out what you think is different to stating an opinion as fact as it may not be a truth for everyone.

I’m sorry but you miss the point - yes, I believe you don’t like the games for the reasons you’ve said but your reasons are YOUR opinion not fact! That’s all I’m trying to say.

A primary reason why I didn’t like those specific games (and a great many other post-2000 adventure games) is that there is too much dialogue and the player is meant to sit staring at static screens while listening to voice actors read. In some cases these actors are technically “good” but cannot overcome the writing, length, visual boredom, and other factors that make these sequences uninteresting.

You’ve given the reason why YOU don’t like the games which I don’t have a problem with but again you go on to state your opinion as fact. I know it’s not a popular opinion but actually I liked a lot of the features in those ‘uninteresting’ games!

chrissie - 28 August 2020 12:43 PM

Also that they don’t get that games aren’t literary offerings & the writing is a small part of the balance between story, puzzles & environment etc.

I completely get this and it’s why I generally advocate for less dialogue and cutscenes. If you’re an adventure gamer who is NOT highly critical of lengthy dialogue sequences or most overly wordy games, it seems to me that you’re the one who doesn’t get it.

No, you don’t get it - you don’t like wordy games & too many cut scenes so you want to dictate what developers include & what I should be critical of.

My quote about balance is a little misleading as a lot of games fall into a category that has a greater emphasis on one of the elements eg environment: Dear Esther & a lot of the VR games, puzzle: Myst, Rhem etc & story:Visual novels, Syberia & TLJ which can include a lot of dialogue (which you don’t have to like!)

If you want to argue that it seems like I’m more against the entire design philosophy of the games mentioned, as opposed to the specifics of acting or writing, that’s a fair argument to make.

For me that’s okay if it’s presented as opinion rather than fact.

I could state as fact that Grim Fandango is boring (because I found it boring) but apart from getting lynched it’s not a truth is it?  Laughing

     
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chrissie, you are nice and very good argumentative. That’s a fact Smile

     
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Exactly, I’d object to calling the writing of TLJ mediocre because I absolutely loved it. If you call it lengthy and say there are a lot of longwinded dialogues, I’d fully agree with you. I happen to like that though so it doesn’t bother me (to the opposite, I’m deeply saddened that TLJH will probably never happen). However calling it “mediocre” is trying to present a judgement as a fact.

I’m guilty of doing the same often enough so can’t really throw the first stone there but I do think that it’s nicer if we try to be more specific and “nicer” in our choices of word.

     
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Thank walas74 & giom!  Thumbs Up

I loved TLJ too & also Syberia as did many other players.

For those that didn’t it really is just a simple matter of conceding that they’re not to your taste rather than judging them as ‘bad’ games based on aspects that you don’t like. Smile

     

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giom - 29 August 2020 09:55 AM

Exactly, I’d object to calling the writing of TLJ mediocre because I absolutely loved it. If you call it lengthy and say there are a lot of longwinded dialogues, I’d fully agree with you. I happen to like that though so it doesn’t bother me (to the opposite, I’m deeply saddened that TLJH will probably never happen). However calling it “mediocre” is trying to present a judgement as a fact.

Are you saying longwinded and lengthy are objective words and mediocre is subjective?
Shouldn’t we, by the same token, refrain from positive judgements of games/writing/etc, such as great or beautiful or enjoyable?
Is it okay to call a game mediocre as long as I add the words in my opinion?

     
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I think you can judge a game as you like, positive or negative, but it’s always going to be an opinion based on your own taste surely?  Smile
Yes, you can call a game mediocre if you add the words ‘in my opinion’ as otherwise you’re professing it as a fact of which you have the authority to state which of course you don’t.
You can describe a game as anything you like, positive or negative, but all I ask is that you don’t state it as fact & expect me to agree. 

     
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Saying that something is mediocre is definitely a subjective thing. Like I find most Marvel movies to be mediocre action flicks, no more, no less, but many people seem them differently. What I see mediocre might not what you see as mediocre. There’s no real way of measuring something like that, just opinions for and against.

     
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tomimt - 29 August 2020 01:07 PM

Saying that something is mediocre is definitely a subjective thing. Like I find most Marvel movies to be mediocre action flicks, no more, no less, but many people seem them differently. What I see mediocre might not what you see as mediocre. There’s no real way of measuring something like that, just opinions for and against.

Thumbs Up

     
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tomimt - 29 August 2020 01:07 PM

What I see mediocre might not what you see as mediocre. There’s no real way of measuring something like that, just opinions for and against.

Sites like MetaCritic are built around the idea to make more reliable statistical conclusions about subjective reviews, but of course in the end they are all opinions.

     
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Bahaha, yeah calling a marvel movie mediocre is too generous in my opinion.

And I think that we can better express our opinions without taking it personally or sending a bunch of youtube links.

Do you guys remember Kate Walkers mom?  She kind of a total bitch, and while the few phone conversations you have with here are seemingly endless, these seems to be one in particular (I don’t remember if it’s your mom or your best friend) but it’s heavily implied that someone is “Keeping your husband warm” while Kate is off chasing syberia.

And it’s just written… weird and stilted and heavy-handed.  And same with Kate’s mom who I think is off boffing someone else.  They want it worked naturally into the dialogue and good on them for trying but I find it stunning not only because of the reveal, but also because of how awkwardly it’s forced into these scenes where kate just stands there talking a on a phone.  And don’t get me started on the phone mechanic because 90% of the time no one answers my phone calls, and the other time it’s required to move the story forward but there’s no way for the player to know thats what they should be doing next.  Specifically near the huge mines I think where you have to call mother and get the latest update from her weird live-in boyfriend that knew this opera chick or some crap.

I disagree with TLJ however.  I think the writing and most of the voice acting are pretty solid even if they don’t feel much like real people, you understand the archetypes, and it’s done with a wink kind of.  There’s the mystic mexican, bohemian artists types, skeezy guy that is a dick that waits outside in the hall all the time.  And then there’s Crow and Captain Nebevay and I think they are genuinely endearing.

My problem with TLJ is I think there a)  TOO MUCH writing, and b) egregious puzzle design that misses the moon entirely.

     
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I don’t recognise any of these Syberia scenarios Celebreon.
I wouldn’t mind the long description if it somehow related to you having actually played the game?? Laughing

     
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TLJ has too much text? Probably. Did I enjoy it? Sure. Same goes for Kentucky Road Zero. But I understand and respect people who might think “Hey! I am playing a game, not reading a book!”

     
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chrissie - 29 August 2020 01:52 PM

I don’t recognise any of these Syberia scenarios so I guess you got the bong Celebreon.
I wouldn’t mind the verbal diarrhoea if it somehow related to you having actually played the game?? Laughing


Okay well I meant it’s weirdly written that kate’s mom was dating that Franck Malkovitch fellow referenced in Helena’s diary which is how you solve that puzzle on getting a lead to finding Helena.   I think mom calls you and tells you earlier in the game about dating him, and in general is totally annoying, and I tuned her out.

Later on if becomes heavily implied that Olivia (not her mom, my mistake XD) and Dan are having an affair, it might be outright stated, I forget.


These were the events to which I was referring.  Yes I did a poor job expressing that I thought these were really weird plot points (and they are written as if kate could give a shit less, which considering how crappy all of her friends and family are, I don’t blame her I guess…. but comeon… really?)

And they have very little emotional impact.

Actually I love syberia, I was just trying to expand on what that other person said when they called the writing “mediocre.”  I was trying to be like “yeah chrissie, I agree, I prefer slightly more specific criticism so that we can facilitate a discussion”  and then I went on to try to give an example.

You didn’t have to call what I had to say “verbal diarrhea.”  That’s a touch insulting, and you could have just asked for clarification.

     

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