Graphics analysis 2: Graphics vs. Gameplay

Discussion in 'Game Design, Development And Publishing' started by Misty, Oct 6, 2018.

  1. Misty

    Misty Member

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    So I was playing Mario Kart 8 again. Mario Kart 8 is good but not great. I would say it is good, because I still have urges to play it. A bad game cannot stand the test of time, therefore it is not a bad game.

    But lets be honest the physics are worse than 94. I tested it, gravity has no effect when the car is on the ground, even when you are in wheeled mode gravity does not effect grip. So on tracks like cheese land or rainbow mode you will stupidly slide off the map because banks do nothing. Even the n64 and gamecube mario karts had gravity and banks, its a very basic thing.

    And what's concerning is that noone cares. Reviewers don't care. All the youtube reviews just complain about the graphics, or not having the characters they want. I lost my faith in society. Where all the good reviewers? On a racing game not a single person notices the broken physics, instead people whine about the graphics. The graphics of Mario Kart 8 are fine. The characters of Mario Kart 8 are good. Anyone who whines about it needs to stop whining.

    The other day I watched a 20 minute video called the comparisons between Forza 7 and Gran Turismo Sport. It was a good video but concerning. The entire video he did not compare the physics engine one time. Instead he just talked about graphics. It seems all anyone cares about is graphics, graphics, graphics, graphics. Does anyone even care about gameplay? People only talk about gameplay when it is really, really broken, like Action Girlz Racing. But they don't really notice it, they don't pay attention to it, unless it is totally not working.

    Mario Kart 8, is a skill based game, therefore fun. It is fun because it is competitive. But it is not fun because of the physics. The game forces you to drift at all times and sucks the freedom out of the game. For example, on Toad Turnpike there is a long .1 G turn. A turn I don't have to drift on. Yet it forces me to drift, because if I don't drift, the kid behind me will driftboost behind me. It's stupid. I shouldn't have to drift around every corner to win. Is this a racing game, or a Tokyo drift battle? This game is just endless snaking. Snaking is the stupidest thing that ever happened to Mario Kart.

    What's also concerning, besides the fact that noone even notices this, is that noone complains that they re-released Mario Kart 8 onto the Nintendo Switch, as the same exact game, basically an updated version of the game, that could have just been a patch. Nintendo always had a tradition of making a new Mario Kart for every console, but yet when they don't make a new mario kart for the Switch, noone cares. And that concerns me. It's like the Rapture already happened. Most of the good gamers souls went and left this world. And all thats left are zombie gamers of call of duty and mountain dew.

    So my final equation, is this: graphics*gameplay=game score. Most people use an additive equation. But it is just not the case. IF your game has the worst graphics, or gives people a headache or nausea to look at, noone will want to play it, and will not enjoy playing it. But if you have the best graphics in the world, but the worst gameplay, noone will play it either. Therefore the final score is graphics*gameplay, not graphics+gameplay.

    Graphics are important. Gameplay is important. But only enough graphics to create an atmosphere. Polygon count, or realistic looking graphics, is not actually important. Therefore the full equation looks more something like this
    final score=min(1,graphics*1.2)*gameplay.

    People's insane obession with graphics is ruining the game industry. People don't realize it, but graphics makes the budget and time to make games exponential. For example, it took the makers of gran turismo sport 3 months just to build 1 car model. But the cars of gran turismo 1 only took 1 day. People's insane obsession with graphics is costing companies a fortune and delaying games.
     
    immortalx likes this.
  2. immortalx

    immortalx Member

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    Well it has always been like this. I still remember the first time I saw Dragon's Lair on the local arcade. It seemed like it came from another world, compared to the other cabinets in the room.
    But it was a ****ty game. No one wanted to play it, yet everyone wanted to watch someone play it...
    Visuals are the "first contact", the magnet. Of course serious gamers usually invest in games with deep gameplay value, but the majority is just casual gamers.

    I was re-playing the core design era Tomb Raider games (for the 10th time) the other day, and my daughter was watching curiously as me and wife were lost (again) in a bunch of pointy polygons.
    She found the gameplay very attractive but couldn't stand the graphics. She laughed hard when I told her this was state of the art back in the day...
    Wasn't graphics what drove me buy the 1st Tomb Raider? Sure it was. But great gameplay is what kept me playing it again and again.
    So I'd say graphics and gameplay are of equal importance. And of course I do agree that most modern games tend to focus more and more on graphics and are therefore not so fun to play.

    I used to trust reviews but not so much anymore. They are of no use to me when a well-marketed and exposed, mediocre game gets nice scores, while a poor-marketed fantastic game (even if it does get good scores) doesn't make enough noise to be heard.
     
    Mick likes this.
  3. Mert

    Mert Member

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    This is the same question you have to answer. Say that you're in a café with 2 girls, name them Donna and Erica.
    Donna is smart, you can have decent conversation with her and she loves Lord of The Rings so you can have some fun being with her. Being with her is fun. She's physically not beautiful.
    Erica is blonde girl, has amazing green eyes. She loves decent clothes and really catch the eyes of all the men in the café. Looking at her just makes your heart explode.

    You can spend one day with one of them. You can tell your friends that you're with Donna or Erica(in the context of a video game, you tell your friends that you're playing with this game).
    Answer depends on people.

    There's not a constant formula for this comparison.

    The same behaviour can be seen amongst people, some people loves reading Marvel heroes, some just want to watch Avengers on theatre.
     
  4. sitebender

    sitebender Member

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    Give a game a desirable art style and you're set. Get noticed in a crowd. If you look good, you get attention and people will figure well if they put that much time into a game's appearance, it must be good. Sure you can always fight uphill and have an ugly game that has the best gameplay, but how will people know?

    It's not even about the quality of art, just the art style. That style can be anything. 8bit, 80s vibe, SNES, low poly PS1, ultra expensive 3D, ASCII, and so on. Make it accomplish the vibe you're going for. Mario Kart is a happy, cheerful game. They spend so much time on minor details to make an incredible, rich presentation that stands out even on what people consider to be inferior hardware.
     
    Toque likes this.
  5. Misty

    Misty Member

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    Yes but how will I find 3d artists who have a Nintendo quality art style, who don't charge up the ar*e? You can't find those kind of artists for indie rates. Thus the indie problem, and corporate monopoly on talent.


    I made a thread based on this concept, but the thread got closed because of viscous trolls giving me a hard time about it.

    And what's concerning,is how society as a whole seems so overwhelmingly shallow. It's like I get how you don't want to play MS Paint graphics. But what about a decent graphics with great gameplay? It seems like people don't even care about gameplay anymore, at least not on Youtube because I keep running into videos that say it is a "games comparison" yet only talk about graphics the whole video. Or "Mario Kart 8 review" yet all it mentions is graphics, characters and some minor gameplay elements and does not even discuss the physics of the game. And yes, professional game developers get bribes from game companies and they are legal bribes because there is no real agreement. They just know if they give good reviews, they will get rewards and paid trips and perks from game companies. And it's not illegal because there is no verbal agreement, it's all done unofficially. The gaming industry has turned into a sleezy corporate greedfest where noone cares about games as much as they care about money. And the whole point of games is the opposite, to escape from reality, to take a break from the 9 to 5, to reach enlightenment and Nirvana, and not obsess over worldly affairs. The gaming industry has just gotten too worldy and consumed with the mundane.
     
    Mert likes this.
  6. sitebender

    sitebender Member

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    If you can't find someone to do something... do it yourself. :)
     
  7. Misty

    Misty Member

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    3d modelling does not call to me. I look at blender and what I see is nightmare fuel. :cool:

    My 3d modelling experience is an absolute nightmare. Milkshape 3d no longer works and cannot display 2d views. Wings 3D freezes my whole computer after opening a 1 mb file, like a frustration fest comedy episode of a newgrounds cartoon where I punch window glass then gets my hand infected and i become terminally ill or something.

    Also, the idea that one person ought to make a project all by themselves is inherently ridiculous, but something us indies are expected to endure.
     
  8. sitebender

    sitebender Member

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    Anything in a blender becomes nightmare fuel.

    Perhaps you should become a cog in the machine. Get paid for your talent?

    ... or shoot for something attainable. Go low poly if you want 3D, but can't afford something grand. It's about style, not cost... even if yes Nintendo prints money and will have the best and most innovative stuff.
     
  9. Toque

    Toque Member

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    I think the gaming industry has always been a greedfest. Now is no different. It’s just how it works. It’s not a charity. Im sure there are many passionate people making AAA games but without profit its a quick demise.

    I bought Pitfall for the Atarti 2600 because it had the best graphics I had ever seen. It was a great game too. People like pretty things. We buy pretty things.
    If a restaraunt menu has pictures I pick the best looking meal. Only the very best restaurants put pictures in their menus.
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2018
  10. Morendral

    Morendral Member

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    I agree with everything except this. The best restaurants have no pictures what so ever. It's chain restaurants and fast food that usually have the pictures
     
  11. Toque

    Toque Member

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    I was trying to be sarcastic...........
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2018
  12. Morendral

    Morendral Member

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    Sorry, it doesn't translate well sometimes to typed words
     
  13. sitebender

    sitebender Member

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    Yeah I remember one of those TV chefs yelling at restaurant owners to stop putting pictures in their menus. Something about if they want to be Denny's or iHop they'll get beat every time.
     
  14. Misty

    Misty Member

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    If you are so happy about it why does your sig say it is like a kick in the teeth?

    And the market is just noise and oversaturated, there are too many games just making noise. It would have been much better to be an indie dev 10 years ago, before everyone's pop and their grandma was doing it. And then there's the android spam, usually made by one foreigner guy who spams like 100 games in the Android market which is just a report of all his other games. The sad part is, usually those spam games are much better than the other games in the store.
     
  15. Setteduetto

    Setteduetto Member

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    Honestly your example isn't gameplay vs graphics, it's physics vs graphics. No one cares about a game's physics being realistic so of course they're not going to talk about it. Even the original Mario Bros. had awful physics and people still play it today sometimes.

    Your problem is that you've conflated realism with fun. No one complains that Mario Kart has a bad physics engine because it doesn't impact their gameplay experience. And the Forza/Gran Turismo comparison is also worthless because the vast majority of racing game fans buy games specifically for the graphics over all else. Many of them are just looking for a racing simulation, not a "game" in the traditional sense.
     
    chance likes this.

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