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RPGWatch Forums » Comments » News Comments » Dying Game Genres @ VGChartz

Default Dying Game Genres @ VGChartz

February 21st, 2011, 13:01
I think a number of the Top Ten Dying Game Genres at VGChartz is debatable but this one isn't:
Isometric RPGs
I refrained by saying “western RPG” because many are actually thriving, just not in the same vein as they used to be. Long ago many of these “western RPGs” were all overhead isometric games, much in the same vein as Diablo. The upcoming Diablo III is a good sign that games like this may not be as dead as they have been, but one wonders if it will kick off a new slew of like-minded games or be an odd novelty. Many of these games, such as Fallout, have moved away from their roots and embraced other play types such as the ones found in first person shooters and even action games.
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February 21st, 2011, 13:01
I think the thread is common - FPS on PC, survival horror, western RPG, jRPG … in each on the author describes how the genre is being changed up to appeal to a broader audience, but failing to attract that audience while simultaneously pissing off older fans.

The only consolation for us … unlike Resident Evil fans who dislike the twitchy RE5, we have indie devs making some great stuff like Basilisk, Soldak, Spiderweb, etc.

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February 21st, 2011, 13:11
I never really thought of perspectives as genres.

What's dying, and what has been dying for a long time, is the cerebral challenge - requiring investment and dedication from the player.

This is across the board for all genres, and it's simply because the mainstream market has no interest in dedicating itself to gaming, like the enthusiast market loves to do.

However, high production values and the "experience-guided" content appeals to all of us, whether we admit it or not.

It's just that most enthusiasts are sad to see the first thing go, and don't quite feel the second is enough to compensate.
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February 21st, 2011, 13:49
Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
What's dying, and what has been dying for a long time, is the cerebral challenge - requiring investment and dedication from the player.

This is across the board for all genres, and it's simply because the mainstream market has no interest in dedicating itself to gaming, like the enthusiast market loves to do.
Yup. It's funny because when we were all computer nerds no one respected a bunch of us were begging for mainstream acceptance. Now it has come, but brought the inevitable mainstream design changes that accompany anything popular. So… be careful what you wish for, I guess?

The exception to it all being cerebral would be FPS games. Those have been massively changed simply because the controller took over as the main input method. Speed, verticality and precision were all sacrificed and the genre changed as a result.
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February 21st, 2011, 13:50
Originally Posted by DoctorNarrative View Post
Yup. It's funny because when we were all computer nerds no one respected a bunch of us were begging for mainstream acceptance. Now it has come, but brought the inevitable mainstream design changes that accompany anything popular. So… be careful what you wish for, I guess?

The exception to it all being cerebral would be FPS games. Those have been massively changed simply because the controller took over as the main input method. Speed, verticality and precision were all sacrificed and the genre changed as a result.
I never asked for acceptance in my life

Gaming was always a fantastic time-waster - and I'm just surprised it took the masses this long to finally figure it out.

Now, I'm just waiting until enough new fans of the genre start demanding more.
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February 21st, 2011, 13:51
Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
I never asked for acceptance in my life
I specifically said "a bunch of us" so as not to make anyone think I was saying all of us did, but I suppose it was inevitable someone would seek to clarify how special they are.
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February 21st, 2011, 13:58
Originally Posted by DoctorNarrative View Post
I specifically said "a bunch of us" so as not to make anyone think I was saying all of us did, but I suppose it was inevitable someone would seek to clarify how special they are.
If you mean special as in "not seeking acceptance", then I suppose I am.

Oh, and I also felt it was kinda inevitable that you would interpret it negatively, so I would fit into your baseless image of who I am - even though I tried to alleviate it somewhat by use of a smiley.
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February 21st, 2011, 14:01
They missed out the Jump & Run genre. Or did they mean it with "platformers" ?

What I also find disturbing is this :

ne has to ask companies like Activision “does the world really need over twenty entries in the Guitar Hero series in less than five years?
This is just kotick.

But - the SIMs have had a similar business method.


And interestingly : The newest comment there is just spam.

And an imho very true remark there is this :

Feniris: Basically everything has transitioned to faster pace games. Which is somewhat true, I felt Red Dead Redemption was slow so I never really got into it as others did.

“ Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius – and a lot of courage – to move in the opposite direction.“ (E.F.Schumacher, Economist, Source)
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February 21st, 2011, 14:07
Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
Now, I'm just waiting until enough new fans of the genre start demanding more.
I think you only have to look to the mainstream media - TV, music, movies - to realize that not only will folks NOT demand more, they will be happy to pay more and more for less and less … and every 10 years you can toss them 'Halo: The New Threat' and they will happily line up for that.

Popular gaming is actually less vapid than popular movies or popular music … but it is quickly approaching that level …

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February 21st, 2011, 14:13
We are seemingly at the crossroads of mass market vs. niche markets.

I almost assume that everything will go this way : Big, huge compnies (like EA, Microsoft, actiBlizzard etc. cater the mass market, Inies the niche market.

And there'll be no mifddle class left.

This is - in a way - a direct copy of capitalism or corporatism that is currently going on, and of which many Europeans see the US as a "role model" : giant mega-companies on the one side, tiny shops on the other side, nothing in the middle between both.

“ Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius – and a lot of courage – to move in the opposite direction.“ (E.F.Schumacher, Economist, Source)
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February 21st, 2011, 14:13
Originally Posted by txa1265 View Post
I think you only have to look to the mainstream media - TV, music, movies - to realize that not only will folks NOT demand more, they will be happy to pay more and more for less and less … and every 10 years you can toss them 'Halo: The New Threat' and they will happily line up for that.

Popular gaming is actually less vapid than popular movies or popular music … but it is quickly approaching that level …
I guess what I mean is the eventual and perpetual segregation of the markets.

The casual market will consist of people who will remain casual, and people who will become intrigued by gaming and the possibilities - just like us enthusiasts did back when we were introduced.

I have no illusions about the masses becoming non-casual - but rather that the enthusiast market will steadily grow alongside the casual market.

In the end, it willl become profitable to invest millions of dollars into AAA "enthusiast" games - because the market will eventually support it.

It will, of course, still be rare - because most investors will want to bet on the larger market.

It is here that market-saturation will be of help to us, because the enthusiast market will seem fresh and ripe to the greedy at some point - which will act as an eye-opener to the other investors.

Exactly like we've seen in Hollywood, where quite a few movies are coming out with a decent budget, even though they have a seemingly limited audience as a target.

I'm sure it'll come, eventually.
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February 21st, 2011, 14:18
I see it a little bit differently :

My only hope is that people will at one point feel so much fed up with "mass market junk" that they'll eventually turn towards more demanding games …

But I have no illusions either : It is like the infamous German "Bild" newspaper It is considered as "junk" by most people, yet it is one of the best-sold newspapers here in Germany. I heard it is similar to the British "Sun".

Or the infamous game of "Pulleralarm" : Junk, but sold good … The "flat" "Moorhuhn" has ignited a whole franchise …

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February 21st, 2011, 15:04
I am surprised that there is no mention of Adventure games - those would be a good example of the cerebral challenge that DArtagnan mentioned. While there has a been some resurgence with the Telltale Games episodic content such as Sam and Max, the adventure game genre is what I see disappearing most.
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February 21st, 2011, 15:11
Hm, yes, outside of Germany they might indeed be dying … Maybe there are so few out there that the author didn't realize they were once there and thus forgot to mention them ?

“ Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius – and a lot of courage – to move in the opposite direction.“ (E.F.Schumacher, Economist, Source)
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February 21st, 2011, 15:26
Originally Posted by Xian View Post
I am surprised that there is no mention of Adventure games - those would be a good example of the cerebral challenge that DArtagnan mentioned. While there has a been some resurgence with the Telltale Games episodic content such as Sam and Max, the adventure game genre is what I see disappearing most.
For a long time I believed the adventure genre to be dying as well. But then I discovered that if you're willing to play slightly less polished games and can live with digital distribution - then there are actually quite many decent new adventure games coming out each year.

I frequent the following "enthusiast" sits for adventure gaming news/reviews:
http://www.gameboomers.com/
http://www.adventuregamers.com/

… and have bought a lot of adventure games from here:
http://us-adventureshop.gamesplanet.com/

Yes, there are indeed a lot of crap being put out in the adventure games genre (like every other genre) but if you like adventures and do a little research, there are actually tons of great gaming hours to be found there for very little money
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February 21st, 2011, 15:26
I think you can skip "genré" and speak about dying content.

Dying content in mainstream includes;
* Strategy & Puzzlesolving. Leaves out people who enjoy planning and making decisions. Used to be presented in rpg's, simulators, strategygames, adventuregames. Nowadays only available in indiegames or onlinegames.
* Horror. Leaves out people who seek thrills. Used to be the hallmark of the Survival Horror genré. Rare in mainstream nowadays.
* Creativity. Leaves out people who like to build, create and make their own stuff. Present in RPG's (characterbuilding), FPS (mod-community), Simulators.

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February 21st, 2011, 15:35
Originally Posted by Alrik Fassbauer View Post
They missed out the Jump & Run genre. Or did they mean it with "platformers" ?
Yeah, that's platformers.

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February 21st, 2011, 16:05
RPGs will remain a viable industry as long as developers are dedicated to releasing gaming experiences that have a notable place on the platform or take advantage of the PCs unique capabilities. Consoles are killing genres and are making developers lazy.
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February 21st, 2011, 18:42
Originally Posted by JemyM View Post
I think you can skip "genré" and speak about dying content.
That's probably a better way of putting it, though the result is more or less the same of course. These genres are not dying out because of the lack of interest in these games, but simply because publishers no longer believe that that sort of content sells (though many games have proven otherwise)…
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February 21st, 2011, 18:43
Isometric RPGs as in the party-based first person view RPGs situation are not popular anymore among the mainstream gamers. They are not dying, it's more like changing their shape. Old style RPGs are retreating to underground. Today's game budgets are so high with all this presentation stuff (graphics, animation, music, voice acting, etc…) and in order to compensate that costs devs and publishers are trying to please more broader gamer crowd (casual gamers and such). But, at the same time indie games scene is developing and will continue to develop in the future because each day more and more roleplaying gamers who are frustrated by high budgeted RPGs are turning their gaze into indie products. Today indie developers have more access to user friendly game engines, programs; talented and willing people can form a developing team without seeing their faces; also they can easily distribute their games via online channels. So we shouldn't be so desperate about the future. Low budgeted games can be very successful: Just look at Spiderweb games or Mount&Blade, Torchlight, Machinarium or many others.

As roleplaying gamers the task that falls to us is to support this indie scene by buying their games and encourage these indie developers. Instead of buying a single game like DA2, ME3 or Skyrim, we can buy at least two or third indie products.

And there's no guarantee that isometric RPGs will always stay in this state. Isometric playing style has some clear advantages over other gameplay styles and maybe Diablo 3 will be able to bring back that popularity to it. Who knows, time will tell.
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