Games need to look backwards not bloody forwards
The recent piece of news with regards to too many sequels being released has perfectly defined one of the massive problems within the industry at present. The problem being, regardless of genre (but in particular the shooters), games are looking forwards rather than looking backwards for their inspiration thus digging a massive hole in the industry.
Look at recent shooters in particular and how many of them are set in the future or based on events that are happening at present in a fictional universe? I think you’ll find that the answer is too many.
The whole trend began when Modern Warfare blew the genre wide open with its ‘near-perfect’ campaign and online multiplayer modes. This marked the beginning of the end for the shooters of old that focused on previous wars. Since then, every other developer out there has jumped on the bandwagon and looked for a slice of the pie. The trouble is, this pie is over-cooking and becoming unappetising.
You see whilst these games are good in their own right and enjoyable to play most of the time, it means that the rest of the industry is suffering because new games don’t carry well known titles on the package. Whether it’s utter s**t or not, a Call of Duty game will sell high quantity because it simply has the COD tag on the case. On the other hand, an amazing new shooter will sell far fewer copies simply because the mass market hasn’t heard of it before.
What’s even worse is that other genres are suffering too, let alone the shooting games. If we take a look at how many shooters are out here at the moment, they all stick to a certain formula which gamers have come to expect. So if a developer comes along with a more creative title that has unusual twists and turns, many will shun it because it does something different rather than sticking to tried and tested methods.
If we think about it logically and sensibly, there could be some great titles based around interesting historical events such as the holy wars, battles between massive armies challenging for new castles and territory and even the revolutions seen in many countries. They don’t even have to follow true events either, developers can take their own spin on something like the Russian revolution and make one hell of a game as a result.
The industry’s obsession with guns and killing people is over-taking our sense of creativity and allowing people to invent their own games and possibly even new genres. Miyamoto himself fears this.
What’s happening now is exactly what happened to the shooters that were set in WW2 and all those cowboy movies that became weary after so many updates. Before it’s too late, and every game that is released is a shooter, we need to break this stalemate we’re currently in. So in the coming months, with a few games set in the past, we may be on the advent of a new, refreshing trend that will re-ignite gamers’ passions for imaginative titles.