PDA

View Full Version : Open world trend in gaming



Squall Leonhart Loire
03-08-2017, 10:36 PM
Do you think it's getting way out of hand or do you enjoy it?

Del Murder
03-09-2017, 12:25 AM
I am in no position to say what is or isn't out of hand in terms of gaming trends. I like open world games, and when they're great, they're great (I loved Dragon Age Inquisition and Shadow of Mordor from this gen, and Red Dead Redemption from the last gen). However, they are a big time commitment so I do find myself getting fatigued with them more frequently than with other genres. I do find myself searching for more high quality single-narrative 'on the rails' type experiences like Uncharted and it does seem like there are more high quality open world games than Uncharted-like games being released. I would be happy to learn otherwise!

I currently have Xenoblade Chronicles X and Witcher 3. Never started Witcher and I only played a couple hours of XCX before losing interest. I'm sure Witcher is really good and I'll like it but I'm afraid of jumping into it and having it consume me for months, where I could play 5-6 other games during that time. Then there's Horizon, Zelda, and Mass Effect for this year. I want to play them all but I just don't have time for five 100 hour games. It's also one of the main reasons I passed on FFXV since FF has now gone this route as well.

So I don't know about out of hand, but I do long for the days where mainstream games were 10-20 hours of story and max 60 hours if you wanted to do everything in the game. Seems like 60 is the minimum to get the full experience from these games now.

Fox
03-09-2017, 12:35 AM
I'm definitely feeling the fatigue about now. Man, I remember when Far Cry 3 came out (holy trout 2012 was five years ago). It felt so fresh and liberating and awesome!

Now that every game is Far Cry 3... not so much. Also, I have been known, on occasion, to refer to open worlds as 'a plague on game design'. I mostly defend this sentiment - although the vitriolic nature of it was largely in response to the disappointment of FFXV - because I believe there are very, very few games that wouldn't be better if they weren't open world. OK so... GTA. Fine. RDR? No problem (R* have more money than God so they can afford to fill the world with enough unique 'stuff' to make it work) Far Cry? Maybe.

But Final Fantasy, The Witcher, Assassin's Creed, The Elder Scrolls, Fallout, XCX, Watch Dogs, basically any other? Better without the open world for sure.

Formalhaut
03-09-2017, 12:38 AM
It definitely seems to be a growing field. Whether that's a good thing...?

I don't know. I really like the concept of open-world exploration and questing. I do like Inquisition but it also highlights the main flaw that can crop up: the vapidity of the environments.

In Inquisition, after the initial enjoyment of exploring a new area wears off, what you're left with is jumping from point to point, finding a random note lying in the field before you go to another point in the map and kill something. Quest complete. Not to mention many of those quests were fairly boring (like luring a Druffalo back to farm). The environments pinged back elfroot and other pick-ups, which seemed to fill up the rest of the map. It all seemed surprisingly hollow. And there were too many desert environments. The Hissing Wastes is the dullest area.

If they chopped down some of the areas and focused on the a tighter set, it could've been much more successful, I think.

Squall Leonhart Loire
03-09-2017, 12:43 AM
Japanese open world = Single Player MMO

maybee
03-09-2017, 01:03 AM
Always hated it- just hated getting lost and not knowing where to go next and just wanted to go straight to the story. A little bit of a open world is okay, like the older Final Fantasy games, but big open worlds ? Not my cuppa tea.

Squall Leonhart Loire
03-09-2017, 01:07 AM
I have mental health issues so Open world doesn't work for ne.

Slothy
03-09-2017, 02:38 AM
I've really got two things to say regarding my opinion of open world games.

1) when they're done well they're utterly fantastic. In some rare cases maybe even ranking among the best games out there.

2) most of them are either boring or outright shit because creating an open world game that has enough content to not become a repeat of the same few mission types (or dungeons or whatever) within a handful of hours is really damn hard, and takes a lot of time, man power, and money. Sadly I see a lot of games that seem to still think it's good enough to have the same old missions where you drive somewhere really fast, shoot a bunch of enemies, or every other thing that's been done to death since grand theft auto 3. Some still try, and occasionally succeed, at shaking things up but among triple A publishers especially in the last term or so years open world became a box to check on marketing feature checklist in a lot of cases whether it helped the game or not.

Now I think most companies are getting better at dialing that back and making sure it is something that really makes the game better now rather than just including them all of the time, but then again, I may just not be paying much attention. With very few exceptions I don't pay half as much attention to the major publishers as I used to.

Pumpkin
03-09-2017, 04:03 AM
I like them but not ALL the time or it's just too much

Atelier Firis went open world but it imposes a time limit for the first half of the game which... is an odd choice

Formalhaut
03-09-2017, 04:28 AM
I'm not sure whether Lightning Returns was a good example. I certainly didn't loathe it, so that's a plus, even with the time limit (although that limit is pretty generous).

Fynn
03-09-2017, 06:17 AM
Xenoblade Chronicles pulls it off wonderfully.

Fox
03-09-2017, 07:46 AM
Xenoblade Chronicles pulls it off wonderfully.

Xenoblade Chronicles is not an open world game. Well, the original isn't, and the less said about X the better.

Fynn
03-09-2017, 07:49 AM
X was good. And just because certain maps were separated doesn't mean it didn't have the mechanics of an open world game, because it totally did

Fox
03-09-2017, 08:06 AM
X was good. And just because certain maps were separated doesn't mean it didn't have the mechanics of an open world game, because it totally did

X had some good ideas wrapped up in some abysmal design decisions that ruined it. Silent protagonist why. Why. Why.

And although XC certainly had some of the mechanics of open world games, the maps being separate is an important distinction in my view, as one of the criticisms I have of open world games in general is that they give you too large of a space with an inability to fill it. By breaking the environment down into smaller maps and - and this is primarily what makes it not count for me - by gating your progression through those maps in a linear fashion, they both make the game non-open world and solves a problem that open world games have.

My view of Xenoblade is that it is an absolutely perfect example of a game that is measurably better as a direct result of not​ being an open world game.

Scruffington
03-09-2017, 08:15 AM
Quite frankly, I'm tired of open world games.

It just feels like such a generic copy-paste format between games that it's beginning to make them seem indistinguishable from each other.

I can't remember the last time an open world game truly blew me away. I enjoyed Witcher 3 a ton when it came out in 2015, but now I can hardly even stomach the thought of going back to that game. Sometimes I just want to enjoy a story or a side quest without having to slog through everything in between.

Prior to Witcher 3...Skyrim in 2011 was the other really standout open world game to me. The GTA series is also pretty good. And for a time, so was Assassin's Creed.

The only open world game this year that I have any hope for is Breath of the Wild. Which I can't wait to play.

Sephiroth
03-09-2017, 08:17 AM
And although XC certainly had some of the mechanics of open world games, the maps being separate is an important distinction in my view, ...

So you would say world colossus Final Fantasy XII is not an open world Final Fantasy. Even though people complained about it because it was so open world and focused on that more than a story that was interesting in their eyes when it came out.

Now that I think about it, XV is like XII. With the difference that XII had a complete story on the DVD already.

God, I cannot wait for the XV updates.

Fox
03-09-2017, 08:21 AM
So you would say world colossus Final Fantasy XII is not an open world Final Fantasy. Even though people complained about it because it was so open world and focused on that more than a story that was interesting in their eyes when it came out.



Absolutely. It was expansive, but not open world (and thank goodness for that because although it felt epic it was definitely too expansive in places). I put it in the same category as XC.

Psychotic
03-09-2017, 09:25 AM
It depends how detailed and rich that open world is. I don't care if it's a vast open landscape consisting of a hundred thousand square miles if it's just empty landscape. I'd much rather play in a smaller space which has been carefully designed and full of interesting detail. I also dislike the repetitive busywork tasks dotted around the map that seem to go hand in hand with this genre too, such as Ubisoft's apparent fixation with having you climb towers.

I agree with what Fox said about separate maps being the distinction in whether or not a game can be classed as open world. And you know what? I think the likes of FFX were better for it, as you had some really varied and interesting locations to explore.

Scruffington
03-09-2017, 10:18 AM
It depends how detailed and rich that open world is. I don't care if it's a vast open landscape consisting of a hundred thousand square miles if it's just empty landscape. I'd much rather play in a smaller space which has been carefully designed and full of interesting detail. I also dislike the repetitive busywork tasks dotted around the map that seem to go hand in hand with this genre too, such as Ubisoft's apparent fixation with having you climb towers.

I agree with what Fox said about separate maps being the distinction in whether or not a game can be classed as open world. And you know what? I think the likes of FFX were better for it, as you had some really varied and interesting locations to explore.

I absolutely agree with this. And this is one of the main reasons why I still prefer FF XIII to FF XV.

I'll take the visually unique and impressive Gapra Whitewood or Sunleth Waterscape over the generic forests of XV any day.

Setting can absolutely be one of the most important elements that makes a JRPG or fantasy game truly feel like a fantasy.

Psychotic
03-09-2017, 10:20 AM
Indeed - I don't think that it's a coincidence that FFXV's most visually impressive, stimulating and interesting area, Altissia, is in an entirely separate map.

Fox
03-09-2017, 10:29 AM
And why MGS3 >>>> MGS5

Scruffington
03-09-2017, 10:31 AM
And why MGS3 >>>> MGS5

That's actually one of the games on my horizon next...currently working on MGS4. :P

Fynn
03-09-2017, 10:37 AM
I can't see the argument behind X's environments being good because they were some of the most boring I've had to endure with literally one treasure off the beaten path per map. I much prefer XII's approach where you had many opportunities to go exploring and find tons of stuff that has nothing to do with the main story.

I can see why someone would be tired with open worlds, and I kind of agree, but for me personally still getting to actually find stuff and get lost in a world, even if it consists of more maps than just one open world, is still the best experience ever. Which is why I'll always take the likes of SMTIV, Xenoblade Chronicles, FFXII, Dragon Quest, and heck, Kingdom Hearts, over the blandness of FFX and XIII.

It really says a lot about FFX's world and dungeon design when the final dungeon is less complex, fun, and rewarding, than Final Fantasy III's first dungeon.

Fox
03-09-2017, 10:46 AM
I agree with you on this Fynn, the expansive map design of XII, Xenoblade et al gives you most of the advantages of open worlds with very few of the drawbacks. It's the perfect balance and I prefer it also to the corridors of X and XIII.

Psychotic
03-09-2017, 10:46 AM
And why MGS3 >>>> MGS5

That's actually one of the games on my horizon next...currently working on MGS4. :PI think MGS V is better than 4, for whatever it's worth, although 3 is of course the best of them all.


Which is why I'll always take the likes of SMTIV, Xenoblade Chronicles, FFXII, Dragon Quest, and heck, Kingdom Hearts, over the blandness of FFX and XIII.You've listed listed a lot of JRPGs there. Have you played any open world games in other genres? Maybe a better question is: Have you ever played a Ubisoft game? I can't speak for all of the others but I definitely would not call FFXII or Kingdom Hearts open world games either and I think your point about FFX is lost because that's not what I'm comparing it to.

Fynn
03-09-2017, 10:57 AM
I'm bouncing off Fox's points about how the best games have large maps that are nonetheless segmented - nowhere have I mentioned that any of them are open world. I dislike X's approach but like FFXII's, Xenoblade's and KH's approach since while they still utilize segmented areas, their approach is far more open and inviting of exploration than X's, which is why my point does, indeed, stand, Paul ;)

The only fully open world game I've really played in recent years was Xenoblade Chronicles X, which I really enjoyed but sadly didn't have much time to indulge in it. Other than that, the Sims 3 handled the open world excellently, though you have to have a really strong computer if you want the game to actually fill that world with sims. Aside from that, I don't keep up with current games much aside from JRPGs, since I really have the time or a drive to. I've started the Witcher and plan to beat the whole trilogy - that reminds me, the first Witcher game is, again, semi-open as you don't have a single map, but a bunch of smaller maps that are nonetheless detailed and interesting to explore.

So in general, if you present me with a choice of FFX-style hallway and full open world, I'll go for full open world without question (unless the story's really good, like in Xenosaga), and if it's a choice between FFX-style hallways and an FFXII-style non-open world but still interesting to explore, I'll also go for the latter. FFX really fails to compel in the gameplay/coloration department, whe FFXII, Xenoblade, etc., are kind of a perfect compromise between both extremes.

Psychotic
03-09-2017, 11:48 AM
The Sims 3 is not open bloody world GET OUT xD

Fynn
03-09-2017, 11:50 AM
How is it not?

From the wiki http://sims.wikia.com/wiki/World


The Sims 3 introduced the concept of an expanded "open world."

Sure, there's some rabbit holes, but other than that your world - your town - is fully accessible to you with every house, building, landmark, etc., being accessible without any loading screens. Maybe they're not the biggest worlds, but how in the hell do you argue they're not open?

Heck, it's so obviously an open world that people went really angry when the game went back to not being an open world in 4 and coming back to loading screens.

Fox
03-09-2017, 12:21 PM
You know the Sims 3 is a real open world game because it has a framerate of about 7fps.

Spuuky
03-09-2017, 05:15 PM
Open world games have the most potential, and a pretty high chance to waste that potential.

Chibi Youkai
03-11-2017, 05:19 PM
If they're done right, open world games are fun. I'm a huge fan of Fallout: New Vegas, for example. But most of the time, they get the most value in the MMO realm. There's nothing wrong with traditional RPG's, and I really wish the dev's would remember that more often.

Mister Adequate
03-11-2017, 07:42 PM
Open World games done right can be immense, immersive, fantastic experiences that suck you in and keep you there for a long long time. San Andreas, Red Dead Redemption, Saints Row 2, Far Cry 2, etc. On the other hand, they have been so refined and honed that they've gotten very samey and the effort put in to making them doesn't seem to be worth the output anymore. I mean, every Ubisoft game is identical now; you're a Tough Guy (tm) and you run around climbing towers, collecting collectables, and killing dudes, for 30 hours.

So basically what Spuuky said, is the best way to describe it.

Vyk
03-14-2017, 04:11 PM
I do think they are getting played out, but I also think developers feel pressured to make them. I can't remember specific examples, but I think Jimquisition covered it a while back, where critics were docking points on even amazing games being linear. And I get the impression that there's this push from fraternity dude-bros who will refuse to play anything that isn't open-world. So unlike the fiasco where developers suddenly decided nobody wanted survival horror games anymore, even though everyone still wanted survival horror. Developers have this pressure that everyone wants open world, and actually a lot of silly people do think they want nothing but open world. This push is ridiculous, and if pressured to do so I think it would destroy games like Uncharted/The Last of Us and Bloodborne/Dark Souls. The Last Guardian was a breath of fresh air in so many ways. A linear minimalist story driven puzzle game set in a beautiful world. No towns to fast travel to, no side quests to slow you down, no overload of one-dimensional NPCs to talk to, no overload of weapons and armor

Resident Evil 7 pulled a Bravely Default for tirple-A survival horror. Bravely Default did a Bravely Default for turn-based JRPGs. Here in a year or so adventure/action games will have to do a Bravely Default to prove linear still isn't bad when done properly

Cell
03-17-2017, 10:39 AM
I can dig a good open world game, but I do take an issue with open-world games that throw in 45809435984395798437 collection quests where you constantly moving from A to B. Even with camps (like DAI) and fast travel to towns like Skyrim it's still time consuming.

Peter1986
03-17-2017, 01:55 PM
I am fine with it as long as each game actually brings something interesting, rather than just being "another open world game".

Also, is it just me or do video games tend to take themselves too seriously nowadays?
I really kinda miss the random lighthearted humour in games like "GoldenEye 007", "Star Ocean: The Second Story" and "Final Fantasy 9".

Laddy
03-17-2017, 08:28 PM
If it isn't filled with interesting stuff that has impact then I'd rather not have it. I love the Elder Scrolls but there's just way too much filler that they really can't help but have and it really isn't the fault of the dev. Open World games seem to be more about scale and scope than focus a lot of the time. Options and freedom are only gifts when they prove rewarding, interesting, or both.

Mr. Carnelian
03-18-2017, 11:51 AM
Open worlds can be great, but they can also be a bit bland: there's no point having a massive open world if there's nothing interesting going on in it. I agree that there seems to be pressure for games to be open world, which can result in games which really would have been better being more focussed just having an open world slapped onto them for no good reason.