Today I want to discuss in kind of a heavy depth – probably the “deepest” discussion I’ll ever write on my blog just ‘cause I’m a lazy fuck – something that’s been bothering me for awhile. Well, not really bother since, well, the only bother I have in my life is whether I’ll wake up in the morning or not, but more of a “well it’s kind of been on my mind and I kind of gave it a thought or two so I might as well lay it out there” kind of a thing. Lots of “kind of”s here, if I may be so bold to say. Ah, fuck that.
Anyway, the discussion is about games – to be more specific, the future of gaming. I mean, I understand that it’s a broad and vague topic, but I’ll address specific points (probably for the first time since I started blogging) and try to run a discussion off of them. What do I mean by “the future of gaming”? Well, in broader terms, I mean games made in general, new machines, virtual reality (obviously) and whether I’ll live to play it (‘cause I’m broke and can’t afford the bad virtual thingies we’ve got now).
So, let’s start by games in general – what kind of games can we expect to be made ten to twenty years in the future? To be honest, I don’t think anything will change really. The games will probably just get bigger and look better, but as far as the core mechanics of each genre I don’t think there’ll be some ground-breaking changes that will affect the world of gaming. There’ll still be genres that are preferred over the others, big companies will still put out shitty products that are just re-skins of their other shitty products, indie “companies” will still create games with one “unique” spin on them and sell them out as something ground-breaking and their products will still, generally, be kind of like a downgraded version of triple AAA (yes, it’s on purpose, get over it. It’s like DC Comics. If they can do it, so gods help me can I) titles. What’s bigger concern, though, is that there will be A LOT of new games near in the future, mainly because of the game engines and their accessibility to every single kid in the world. Game engines, while still a cool thing for a couple of guys that would just like a head-start on their game, are really, personally, what’s kind of killing the gaming world. Everyone can make a game nowadays. Hell, you turn up Unity, go to Asset Store, find some sort of a platformer kit, kind of re-skin it and you can literally sell that game for money. I don’t want to take away from it or anything, but that’s two days worth of work – MAX. It takes so little effort nowadays to create a game and sell it that it’s not even funny. Fuck, even me, a guy who’s never as much as learned a line of the code was able to create a playable clone of Flappy Bird in like 6 hours. Did I release it? Hell no. I’ve still got some fucking dignity left, if nothing else. Another major point is that the assets for games are also easily reached – especially the shitty ones. So you don’t even need to know how to model/texture to make your game. Shit, you go on YouTube and learn how to make UI and you’re done. If you don’t have time to do that, don’t worry, there are also UI’s to be downloaded. It’s kind of terrible, to be honest, and the fact is that Steam’s filters, especially lately, are not up to par. These shitty games get published often, and no matter how much we whine, as long as we keep buying them, they won’t go away.
I know it’s not really my place to speak, but I do think we’re getting more than we deserve as consumers. Rarely something is good enough for us not to go on internet and bitch about the smallest things ever (like the guy whose favorite game is ‘Call of Duty’ but he for some reason bought ‘Divinity: Original Sin’ and is now ranting about how that game is shit). As much as I talk shit about games on the internet, I generally do enjoy most of the games I play. I just think that majority of them could be SO MUCH better if just a little more effort has been put into them. Then again, if developers just say “fuck it” and leave it at that, the least they can do is let the game be mod-able. Look at Torchlight II, look at Cities: Skylines, and the prime example of that – Skyrim. Gamers were able to create so much shit that it extended the lives of these games as well as the reasons as to why you should buy them. I bought Skyrim just recently and I didn’t know where the fuck to start with mods when I installed the game. There was so much shit that you can literally download mods for days and you’d still be able to mod the game further, just for the fucks of it. Or, if you look at the Cities: Skylines – it’s true that game kind of lacks variety in the building department, but literally a month after its release, the community has already supplemented enough mods that you don’t even have to worry about that shit if you’re thinking about buying games. You can virtually create ANY building and import it into the game. ANY building. I think that this, really, is the true future of gaming. Mods. I know there are a lot of people out there that will say that that’s just BS and that developers should do their jobs instead of community, but why? If I’m willing to create a mod for a game, something developers might have missed, why shouldn’t I? Just because you think that developers should think of EVERYTHING before releasing the game, we both know that that’s impossible. Yes, I’ll always bitch and whine if the game lacks content, but if it has mod support, it won’t matter as much. I know some guys that have been playing Skyrim since its release, and still are today, not because the core game has so much shit to do, but because there are so many mods (some of which offer a complete new storyline with 20 plus hours of gameplay) that even years after you can still feel fresh enough to play the game.
Leaving that discussion aside, let’s talk about new machines. So far, the next gen consoles are kind of a disappointment, to be honest, considering that these kinds of graphics were available on PC for awhile now. I do think that gaming will slowly transfer to PC completely over the course of years since you can create virtually anything and many machines will be able to run it at a steady framerate. I don’t have anything against consoles, really, I just think that they’re lagging behind in the terms of hardware a bit too much. Unless the next-next gen consoles upgrade their hardware immensely, I can imagine PC just kind of taking over the gaming in general. There isn’t much to discuss here, though, since the new consoles have only been released about a year ago, and developers are still figuring out ways to push the hardware to its far limits, but I do think that PS and Xbox will still be dominant on the market, with the great possibility of Wii U (been getting some great games recently) kind of buttering in right there. We’ll see.
About the virtual reality. Meh. Don’t get me wrong, I’d like nothing more than to be able to flay my arms around like a moron and the character in the game does that move with this massive fucking scythe, but that’s far down the road. I’d like to be part of the virtual world and live it as much as the next guy, but we’re still far from it. Ever since the gaming in general was kind of conveyed, a lot of people have been dreaming and discussing the terms of virtual reality – how far can we push it and just … how can we push it. We can probably forget about the Sword-Art-Online kind of a experience; even if we’re able to manipulate our brains into that kind of a state, I highly doubt it’d be approved just because it’d be extremely dangerous and consequences would probably be plenty. Just the fact that the machine would have control over your brain is enough, but the fact even conveying the idea of such device is hard, we can just let that flow down the current. Half-virtual-reality on the other hand can be a thing. Simulating real-life movement and translating into the game is very much possible, as well as 360 simulation of the virtual world, are all already a reality. The question that remains is just how far we can push that kind of a virtual reality. This kind of virtual reality, I personally think, can only translate into first-person games, so forget about simulating the spectacle fighters or 3rd person RPGs or … well, anything that doesn’t sit well with First person. Car racing, I think, will be the one that will offer the best experience because, even now, without virtual reality, it can already be nearly life-like simulation if you have the required equipment. Sports, to a certain degree, can also be simulated (running, jumping, throwing etc). Strategy games and top-down RPGs are out of the question but we’ll see what great minds of 21st century will be capable of.
Anyway guys, that concludes my discussion for today. I didn’t address every single point of “the future of gaming”, but I do think I’ve covered the topics that are most discussed in general. If you’ve got any thoughts to share or some counter-points or ideas, feel free to comment. I’ll be responding back. Have a shitty day guys. Jk, have the shittiest day ever.