Gamer Hate

Belligerently lacking in remorse.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Resident Evil 5
Another Shitty Game

Five years… This took five years to make? I really don’t understand how a game that is basically Resident Evil 4 with a desert theme takes 5 frackin’ years to make. The only game company that can take 5 years to make a game and innovate so little is Blizzard, and Capcom, I’m sorry, but you’re no Blizzard.

How the hell did you spend 5 years making this game and end up making it WORSE? You can only buy new goods at level loads? What the hell is that about? Are my weapons being air-dropped from the sky? Why did you remove the trench-coat guy? The only annoyance was that he only had one line of dialogue for opening and closing his inventory screen. That was it! Otherwise it was fine. Oh wait, I know, you wanted the innovation of team play and you were too frackin’ lazy to program a way for players to interact with menus without disrupting the action… What are you stupid? Put the trenchcoat guy in a corner where there are no zombies…

I also hate your real time inventory management. What the hell is wrong with you? It is NOT FUN to have to deal with a clunky inventory interface when zombies are baring down on you. In fact, it’s the opposite of fun, it’s an incredible annoyance that has no place being in a video game. Which brings me to my major gripe about Capcom’s Resident Evil game design theory.

Making an interface or interaction in the game world difficult and/or shitty on PURPOSE does NOT enhance the “scariness” factor of your game. It enhances the ANNOYANCE factor of your game. Resident Evil 5 is a big annoying piece of crap with none of the innovation or interest that originally grabbed our attention in Resident Evil 4.

Don’t you get it?! Resident Evil 4 was interesting because it took the things that were good from previous Resident Evils (i.e. zombies coming at you, oppressive atmosphere, limited ammo/weapons) and added things that made it BETTER! Being able to properly aim, being able to run away without it feeling like a total piece of shit (though it still wasn’t perfect) and being able to upgrade your weapons. How did you frack this all up in RE5? Allow me to explain.

You added NO INNOVATIONS! Instead you gave us a moronic partner who we now have to micromanage and share assets with, a REAL TIME inventory management system which still sucks and is made all the worse by having to deal with it in real time, and a brightly lit desert world where we shoot Africans instead of Spaniards. Everything else is EXACTLY THE SAME!

Five frackin’ years to make a game worse! Let me know when you want to make RE6, just give me all that money and I’ll get you a team of texture artists to make the game in a snow environment. I’ll use the other 12 million to make a good game.


Resident Evil 5 – D+

    Pros:
  • Interesting take on oppressive environment.
  • Mostly the same as Resident Evil 4
    • Cons:
  • Shitty inventory management in real time in a horror setting, NO, BAD!
  • Poor storyline (but it’s an RE game).
  • Idiotic partner wastes your ammo, your herbs and bitches constantly.
  • You already played this game and it was more fun the first time.
  • posted by CommanderHate at 7:51 pm  

    Monday, May 18, 2009

    Yoink! You’re On This Game Now!
    Indecisive Game Studios

    I couldn’t tell you how many studios do this. In fact, it’s been a relatively rare event within my own career. The normal course of events is that you’re assigned to a project and you stay on that project to completion. This is the first time I’ve ever been yanked off one project to lead another, then 2 months later, yanked back off the project and put on my old one.

    I was only on my first project for 1 month, and it made a lot of sense for me to be on it. I had a lot of experience related to the game and I was gearing up to craft a great RTS. Then they asked me to help them redesign another game that was in trouble. Along with several other designers we met for a couple days and I apparently impressed someone with my design proposals because shortly thereafter I found myself Lead Game Designer on the very same title.

    Let me say, the game was/is a clusterfuck of poorly done junior design work, poorly presented ideas, misdirection and indecisiveness from the publisher and a little bit of self-sabotage. That bad? Yeah, that bad. Programmers were literally hard-coding values so that the game designer wouldn’t tweak the game anymore… THAT bad…

    So I spent 2 months trying to reshape the vision of the game and get it into a workable format for a 9 month cycle of continued development with the goal of releasing shortly thereafter. At the end of those 2 months I was to present the idea to a group at the main publisher and get their approval. At the last second, the trip for the presentation was canceled, another project was canceled, and a new Lead Designer was assigned to the project from that one. I was moved back to my ORIGINAL project and I gave my presentation over video conference to the publisher group which was then approved.

    I’m VERY happy to be back on the first project, it made the most sense for my design background and I can tell you I’ll do much better overall on it. However, it FRACKIN’ SUCKS to have wasted 2 months on that hell hole of a project (doing some inspired design work in order to turn a piece of crap into a high quality product) only to know that every bit of work I did will be tossed into the trash.

    It’s just one of those things. When one designer takes over another designer’s work, no matter how good the work was, it will almost entirely be tossed out. Not because it’s bad (though there can be arguments there), but because it’s difficult to execute a game designer’s vision without that game designer’s presence. That doesn’t make it any less frustrating. I’ve basically spent 2 months doing almost nothing.

    Okay, not entirely true. I learned some valuable lessons on presentations and on the inner-workings of this company. Primarily, that I cannot trust their snap decisions. That their group in charge of giving the okays on products has had a sordid past of steering projects wrong. That being handed a nearly completed game from another company gives everyone extremely unreasonable expectations for the timeline of the release of the product (there’s a reason they couldn’t finish the game!!!). And finally, that if you’re a well-spoken presenter, you can make anything seem like a good idea.

    posted by CommanderHate at 8:46 am  

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