Token Female Gamer

This gamer's review of all things computer, console, and games!

Posts Tagged ‘industry’

Day 28 – Favorite game developer

Tuesday, August 28th, 2012

I am going to go with the obvious choice and pick Shigeru Miyamoto. His contributions, as a director/designer/producer at Nintendo, have had a huge impact on my gaming life.

Looking at it from a broader perspective I could just pick Nintendo EAD. But I have found the gaming industry is rather volatile. Though Miyamoto-san didn’t create games in a vacuum, it is unlikely that the entire Super Mario team is still working at Nintendo. Though, honestly, it is far more likely in Japan than it is here.

Whatever the case, since Nintendo has chosen to give Miyamoto-san his due, I can only assume that the projects he worked on were heavily influenced by his vision for the games.

Shigeru Miyamoto is also one of the few developers to enjoy almost constant success through out a very long career.

I will add that my other pick was the creator of Diablo…<3

Day 16 – Game with the best cut scenes

Thursday, August 16th, 2012

I’m not a big fan of cut scenes, mainly because it seems that cut scenes have become so ubiquitous that they are turning games into movies. And since I want to play a game and not watch an interactive movie, I find myself rather resentful of the overabundance of cut scene presence.

That being said, games were not always a matter of running from one cut scene to the next. Due to the limitations of storage space and computer processing power, developers had to limit their visual intermissions. Clearly I long for the days of brevity. =)

Never the less, I was just as taken with the beauty of new fangled graphics as any impressionable child. My first real memory of being in awe of ‘the pretty graphics’ is Final Fantasy 8. It was interspersed with high quality cut scenes, but never felt like the movie aspect was overshadowing the game.

FF8 was actually the first final fantasy game I played (I have played sequels and prequels since then) and I was really blown away by the entire game, graphics, cut scenes, story, game play, and all; instant devotion. =)

Day 12 – Personally most significant game

Sunday, August 12th, 2012

While there are lots of games that I love, there are very few games that have changed my life. The most influential of this small list is the original Diablo.

A good college friend introduced me to the game and I was instantly hooked. Having no PC of my own I spent as much time occupying my friend’s computer as I could. It never seemed enough.

It was an incredible game, totally addictive and scary, but immensely fun. It was also the first game that made me actively want to pursue video games as a career.

Diablo was the reason I changed my major from Chemistry to Computer Science and it was a huge determining factor in where I eventually applied for jobs.

I can’t even imagine how different my life would have been had I not played Diablo or had I not loved it as much as I did.

Day 6 – Most annoying character

Monday, August 6th, 2012

Heavy Rain had the most annoying selection of characters I have ever seen in a game. Each one of them had something seriously wrong, which could have been interesting, but in the end just felt gimmicky, like the developers were substituting trauma for character depth.

While any of the characters could have qualified for this category, Ethan Mars, the game’s beginning character, was by far the most irritating. Though I lay much of the blame on him, some of the irritation lies with the game mechanics.

The best example is one of the beginning sequences, where Ethan takes his kid to the mall. They stop to purchase a balloon, which the kid grabs and promptly walks off with. The mall is crowded and soon, the only indicator of the kid’s location is the red balloon floating over people’s heads.

What does Ethan do? Fuss with his wallet to pay the balloon guy. No holding hands with the kid, no running after him and paying the guy back later, nothing. Of course the game forces you to pay before you may run after the kid, which it also makes harder by having the menu be incredibly shaky. This obviously does not end well.

Essentially the game isn’t allowing for good parenting here because they need this plot point to happen, so that Ethan can then go on to be a huge, wet, vapid, mess of a man for the rest of the game. It’s yet again, the illusion of choice offered to the player without ever really giving them any real choices.

To that I say F#$% YOU. This game is filled with cheap emotional rollercoasters and Ethan’s kid disaster is only the tip of the iceberg.

Yup, I hated this game, I hated every cheap shot they took, but mostly I hated that they used kids as a way to get them.

Hmm, maybe I should have renamed this topic to ‘Most hated game’.

Day 3 – Favorite genre

Friday, August 3rd, 2012

Role Playing Games (RPGs) are by far my favorite genre.

What is a RPG by wiki:

Generally, the player controls a central game character, or multiple game characters, usually called a party, and achieves victory by completing a series of quests or reaching the conclusion of a central storyline. Players explore a game world, while solving puzzles and engaging in tactical combat. A key feature of the genre is that characters grow in power and abilities…

That’s a pretty decent summary and shows how open ended this genre really is. Sometimes, the genre feels more like the kitchen sink; everything ends up there, which is probably because RPGs are so darn popular.

More RPGs? Great! But the labeling has gotten a bit bloated (thus kitchen sink) and I can’t rely simply on the RPG moniker to evaluate if I will like a game. Nor should I; not all RPGs are alike and they shouldn’t be, diversity drives innovation.

So what is it that I look for? Glad you asked. Having done much research on the subject, I have found that what I enjoy most is the character development and loot collecting.

Building up a character, gaining levels and increasing their powers, equipping them with bigger and better weapons and armor, this investing in a character or party really hooks me into the game.

And then the display of power gained, by exploring new and harder areas and defeating increasingly difficult bad guys. If done well, this type of game can be incredibly fun and addictive. ~cough~ Diablo2 ~cough~

While the story can be interesting, it has never really been a big reason for my wanting to play RPGs and neither has the quest system. Often these are closely tied together and mostly end up being something I rush through, or suffer through.

Which is why I worry about the genre a bit. It seems that more developers are turning RPGs into animated movies. More and more RPGs are suffering the ‘running from cut scene to cut scene’ fate. I truly hope that this is just a phase and that the actual game side of RPGs doesn’t get buried inside movies forever.

Images in order L-R: Baldurs Gate 2, Diablo 2, The Legend of Zelda, Final Fantasy 12, Pokemon B&W, Skyrim, Vampire: Bloodlines, World of Warcraft.

Day 2 – Favorite game franchise

Thursday, August 2nd, 2012

There are quite a few franchises that I follow devotedly, but none has been quite as long lasting or as free of disappointment as the Mario franchise has been. Besides, it was my first, and you never forget your first.

Not only has the Mario franchise been around for more then thirty years, it has produced some of the best games ever; Super Mario Bros, Mario Kart, Mario Party, Paper Mario, Luigi’s Mansion, etc. I’m not even mentioning all the sequels because the amount is overwhelming.

This franchise is Nintendo’s bread and butter, the reason for Nintendo’s continuing existence and one of the main reasons I keep supporting them.

Of course it is not only about Mario anymore. The franchise has given us a veritable cornucopia of characters to love, hate, and cheer; Mario, Luigi, Toad, Princess Peach, Bowser, Yoshi, Wario, and more. The Mario family is large and lovable and contains some of the most recognizable characters in the world.

And to the father of the whole bunch, Shigery Miyamoto, thank you so very much for sharing this little bit of awesome with the world. Me = Mario fan for life. <3<3<3

(Cute little side note article – The genealogy of Mario as explained by Japanese 6 year olds.)

30 Days of Video Games

Tuesday, July 31st, 2012

This was something I caught the tail end of on another blog, but it seems to have gone around a while ago. Never one to be fazed by being late to the party, I thought this would be quite entertaining. My 400th post hurrah seemed like the perfect excuse to try my hand at answering these thirty video game questions.

But posting every day is a challenge. Very much wanting to succeed, I started working on the list slowly. First I wanted to simply find an answer to each question, which turned out to be trickier then I expected.

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The Hero’s Journey

Wednesday, July 4th, 2012

Extra Credits discusses Journey and how it quite brilliantly expresses the Hero’s Quest. I am calling this incredibly high praise as the video highlights how subtle and ingenious the game Journey actually is. Because its AWESOME!

http://penny-arcade.com/patv/episode/the-heros-journey-part-1

Sadly, its only part 1. I think part 2 will air next week.

Here is Part 2! http://penny-arcade.com/patv/episode/the-heros-journey-part-2

Draw Something Review (iPhone)

Sunday, July 1st, 2012

Draw Something, the latest mobile pictonary game from OMGPOP, has had its fifteen minutes of fame. But what a whirlwind fifteen minutes it has been. From its rapid rise to fame, even toppling the number one Angry Birds, to Zynga’s purchase of the struggling OMGPOP. The Atlantic Wire has a great article chronicling the strange story.

As for the actual game, it is basically two-player Pictionary. The first player chose a word from a selection of three, then proceeds to draw it on their mobile device. Once done, the picture is sent to the second player where they have the chance to guess what the word is. Once guessed, the roles are reversed. And though I love Pictionary, Draw Something just never seemed as satisfying.

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Kickstarter peek

Thursday, June 7th, 2012

So most of the projects that I have supported are all funded and should be on their way in the next two years. Weee. And of course I have spent waaaay  more then I would have otherwise, because I’m supporting the people! Doing good things!!!

Funds being tapped out and all I have avoided over funding more projects for a while. And then a friend of mine linked this.

A board that doesn’t have to be held down by books, that doesn’t leave crappy ghost images, that might actually last and look decent? Yes please.

The other project I just backed is Tropes vs Women. A webseries looking at the various tropes that women in video games get put into.

This should be really interesting to see come to fruition.

Now I will be stepping away from the kickstarter, for a while anyway. =)