Monday, November 24, 2008

On Jonathan Blow's Latest Talk: 'How To Make Games That Touch People'

Braid's Blow: 'How To Make Games That Touch People'

Jonathan's talk probably is the closest thing to what I've been thinking about today's games among any keynotes or presentations on the same topic until now.

Today's games are structured in a way that if they were novels, we would be solving puzzles or other challenges in between chapters of the story. For example, first, we'd be reading dialogues, a character's thoughts, feelings, meaningful interaction with other characters. Then when that parts over and time to move to next part of the story, we're slammed with a caculus problem that we have to solve in order to discover what happens next.

While I really do want to see someone try a different path than this, I still want to be told of a touching story, an interactive one, that is. I really would be pissed if all we see in future is AAA version of "Gravitation" or "Marriage." While it certainly is a progression, it's missing story element that I hunger.

What if we take completely opposite way, and instead of suppressing linear story, we take away player control? What if we don't let players directly control anything, but instead, let them merely influence character's actions? I see the true merit of a medium being interactive in its ability to let players influence and thus customize the experience to his or her liking.

In this case, we'd have a game that looks more or less like movies or TV shows, but depending on how a player, or rather a viewer, influence characters, plot turns and twists in response to that.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Wii Finally Offer Something For Hardcore Gamers

Wii has been something of a novelty product for me; it's not something I have to have, but would be a fun system to play on occasionally. This is because Nintendo tried so hard to capture larger crowd, that is the "casual" audience, that they pretty much didn't put much effort in developing more serious titles for more "hardcore" audience. This is obvious if you consider their choice of executive officers and who they picked to come up to the stage at E3 2008 press conference and kick off the show: Cammie Dunaway, Nintendo's VP of sales and marketing.

However, with the announcement of Vanillaware, the creator of much-beloved Odin Sphere, bringing their next title, Oboro Muramasa Youtouden, a beautiful 2D action RPG just like the previous title, to Wii, Nintendo finally got me seriously interested in their system. I was 'meh' at Mario, Zelda, and any other titles they had, but this, I really want to play.

But let me keep myself from dishing in heavy investment into Wii just yet, until they truely convince me that there are more titles like this on the horizon, or I'm sure I'll regret it later...

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Kudos To Microsoft. *Claps Half-Heartedly*

Microsoft Adjusts Contents & Pricing for Fable II Collector's Edition

Honestly speaking, I haven't been in the market for everything games for that long. My saying this may puzzle some of you, since I always was amazed and immersed in the wonderful world of games as long as you've known me. (This goes the same for me.)

But it is a fact; before I started working, and figured out what my spending ability is, I wasn't really out there buying games and console systems. I rarely got my hands on spare money, and so I spent it only on truely, truely epic and hallmark games, such as StarCraft. So, I think I can rightfully say Fable 2 Limited Edition is the first game I've pre-ordered before released date.

And so, the news of the adjustment Microsoft is making for the package is especially acerbic for me. For $10 less, I won't be receiving a "Hobbes" figurine, five "Fate" Cards, or the premium packaging box. Still included is the bonus downloadable contents and a bonus DVD with "Making-of" documentary, which is... still OK. Sort of.

I think this is a good chance to think about how valuable these special packages like "Collector's Edition", "Limited Edition", or even "ULTRA LIMITED EDITION" really are.

Just how valuable are these special editions? Is buying these more expensive variants meaningless and foolish? Am I being a victim of those companies' marketing strategies? I really don't know which side of the fence I am standing, or should stand.

Anyhow, I now need to find another way to fill up my bland and lifeless cubicle...

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

What It Takes To Be A Game Developer

I've always admired to become a game developer, to create something that will revolutionize the face of gaming. And I was thinking of sneaking into the indutry with my software engineering skill, but alas, that's not the only one you need: you need a tough body that can be pushed around, charged into a wall, and so on..!

Check it out:

FYI, Neil Wakefield, the poor guy in helmet, is a core member of the team behind Peter Molyneux's new game, Fable 2. And they're researching moves for their combat system. Or so they say, at least. :)

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Another Beginning

This post marks a start of yet another blog for me, with Eternity Begins being another.

This blog will serve as a place where any ideas, stories, opinions, or anything relates to games will be stored and shared. This is in response to a post by Brenda Brathwaite, a professor at Savana College of Art and Design and an industry veteran, "Design Portfolios - Is there such a thing?"

This isn't to say that I am to create a "design portfolio" with this blog; rather, I am simply creating a repository for everything I have to talk about in game, and more importantly, interactive storytelling (hence, the title).