Sunday, 16 November 2008

If the Graphics make you "Oooh!" then the price will make you wince.

Rawr! Me again! Are you all trembling at the thought of another personality-over-content blog entry? Then buckle yourself in and hold on for dear life, 'kay? <3


Games have improved immensely since the likes of the MegaDrive and the Amiga. And with such improvements comes a much higher price-tag. The vast majority of games released in recent days are designed to be played on those fancy next-gen consoles that have everyone buzzing... PS3, Xbox 360... (wannem!)

Let us start with a simple comparison, shall we? Atari's Pac-Man vs. Microsoft's Halo 2. ...And let teh matchz0r begin! Ding!

1982, Atari released a version of the much-loved Pac-Man to be bought for thirty US Dollars and played on the Video Computer System (or VCS). The game itself was written by just one programmer and took him a couple of months to complete. It cost Atari a grand total of $100,000 to develop the game and the resultant product wasn't that great. It was annoying to play as the screen flickered and it struggled to overcome the limitations imposed on it by the VCS. Nevertheless, the game proved popular and sold over ten million copies.

Twenty years later and games have improved a fair bit since the eighties. The year is 2004 and Microsoft have just finished work on their long-awaited Halo 2 to be released for Xbox 360 and the PC. The game took a whopping three years to complete despite the fact that almost 200 people are listed in the credits as having worked on it. Microsoft forked out $40 million to develop the game and reaped their reward with record sales in the first month of release, selling over eight million copies! At $50 a game, that's an awful lot of dough.

As you can see from the comparison. Not only has the price of developing a game increased but so has the size of the development team and the time allowed for them to complete a game. Three years is an awful long time. The fans need to be commended for their patience! Someone give each of them a medal, 'kay?

The cost of developing games has increased dramatically with each new console. PS3 and Xbox 360 development prices are through the proverbial roof! And, let’s face it, the price ain’t going down any time soon… Damn those money-hungry tyrants. *grumble*


It's been a fair while since I lost my soul to a certain MMORPG... [Zombie-Dougal Mode] Must... buy... Wrath... Must... make.... Death...Knight... *drool* [/Zombie-Dougal Mode]

Ahem. I have seen the future! ...and it is virtual reality for all!

I know it's been covered many times in TV shows, films and books; and that it normally ends up with the dashing young hero pulled into a Dungeons and Dragons-esque world where he must fight for his life as the evil geek tries to take over the game world and rule as KING! ...But! I would like to see readily-available games where you directly control your toon. These could be MMORPGs (like GuildWars and WoW) or First-Person-Shooters (Unreal Tournament <3)... Even sports games (playing "The Beautiful Game" alongside your favourite football heroes?). It would be nice to not be limited to moving a little joystick up and down or bashing a few buttons.

Imagine playing Pokémon: Aquamarine and THROWING your own Pokéballs.. running over to your injured Pikachu and administering Potions and Antidotes. Darting about the world of Final Fantasy XXVI in Tetsuya's latest crazy plot. ...or for the more action-type characters among you, how about ACTUALLY creeping about that top-secret bad guy's base? Holding your [insert impressive gun name here] close to your chest - your heart POUNDING as you try to dodge the cameras and security guards... Can't you just feel the adrenaline? The thrill of the chase! The rush of an explosion! The triumph of victory! The agony of defeat! It's all... so... soo... SWEET!

(It's pretty obvious that Dougal likes the escapism offered by video games, 'ey? ^^;)


From what I've seen of the Eye Toy for the PlayStation, I think that someone was toying with the idea of implementing the player 'inside' the game and even though the games offered by the Eye Toy were simple "touch the things on the screen;" every step forwards is a step in the right direction, yes? yes?
Personally, I feel that the Wii is the biggest step towards the games of my dreams (so far, at least). The interactivity offered by the Wii-mote is simply delicious and I crave mooooore! *cackles*

-The dougalBUG.

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