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the 'Modern' setting of gaming


Doc Ginger

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This mostly revolves around shooters but does anyone else see the patterns beginning to develop in the chosen settings of ANY shooters these days? 

 

Remember our first decades as gamers, when EVERYTHING was WW2 and you couldnt find a modern shooter to save your life? And Sci-fi's worth a damn were few and far inbetween... Then WW2 disappeared overnight. Played out, it had been done thousands of times and the masses were sick of it. 

 

Has anyone else noticed their doing the exact same thing with modern settings now? After WW2 it became true modern, but that wasnt exciting enough. So then it was modern +5 years. And we haven't moved since from that rut. Every 3 months it seems ANOTHER huge shooter set in a modern + a few years setting is announced or released. 

 

Personally I am already tired of shooting someone with AK/M4 series weapons. And soon enough some big company is going to release Call of Battlefield 18: Modern Warfighter and its not going to sell as well as the previous generation. The masses will get sick of it and the big games will all find a new decade to lambaste to death in their games.

 

I know im not the only one noticing this. Opinions?

 

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I've noticed this as well, especially with recent shooters. I'm looking at you, Call of Duty.
I think one of the reasons that future settings are becoming popular is because it allows for freedom of aesthetics, weapons, storytelling etc, because it hasn't happened yet. When WWII games were popular, you had to stick to certain weapons, locations, designs and such. 
I don't really fancy games set in the 'not so distant future', however Metal Gear is an exception. I'm much more likely to play games set in a steampunk era (Bioshock Infinite), an alternative past/present/future (Fallout), or set far off into the future (Mass Effect).

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My friend, you have just perfectly echoed my main opinion on shooters, there's just too many and they're just too similar for me to care. (Though if the companies actually have the balls to team up and make a game named "Call of Battlefield 18: Modern Warfighter" I would laugh my ass off and applaud them. Who knows, I might even buy it just for the heck of it.)

 

I don't think it would hurt much for there to be a drop in the number of different FPSes, or even just have the same amount, but take more risky design philosophies when making it. Also, to the companies, please stop the full game sequels if you're creating what could basically be a game patch plus some DLC (and the same applies to you New super Mario bros. series! Don't think I can't see you in that corner).

 

Again, I think game developers need to create more new IPs, but come to think of it, I'd say this applies to more than just shooters.

Edited by Rockmare
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The shooter market is oversaturated which is mostly what contributes to this feeling I think. But I guess that's not quite the point of the topic.

 

Are there really that many shooters out there that are set in modern times; do they really take up that large a percentage of the total amount of shooters on the market? (Honest question)

 

I don't really notice since all shooters that don't differentiate themselves effectively enough from their competition, I ignore and I'm still likely to pass on getting shooters that have caught my attention because I'm tired of them. mellow.png

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The problem is people only seem to play COD and COD will always be COD.

 

There are loads of less well covered FPS games such as halo where your using very random wepons that are (literally) out of this world :)

 

If anything I think nowadays it's starting to diversify a little bit more ( like @apocaliyptic_Unicorn mentioned with so many different games from different genres).

 

I generally don't play shooters anymore thought because I just got bored of the genera. It will always be shooting guns at people, and its kinda hard to vary that to much :P.

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This mostly revolves around shooters but does anyone else see the patterns beginning to develop in the chosen settings of ANY shooters these days? 

 

Remember our first decades as gamers, when EVERYTHING was WW2 and you couldnt find a modern shooter to save your life? And Sci-fi's worth a damn were few and far inbetween... Then WW2 disappeared overnight. Played out, it had been done thousands of times and the masses were sick of it. 

 

Has anyone else noticed their doing the exact same thing with modern settings now? After WW2 it became true modern, but that wasnt exciting enough. So then it was modern +5 years. And we haven't moved since from that rut. Every 3 months it seems ANOTHER huge shooter set in a modern + a few years setting is announced or released. 

 

Personally I am already tired of shooting someone with AK/M4 series weapons. And soon enough some big company is going to release Call of Battlefield 18: Modern Warfighter and its not going to sell as well as the previous generation. The masses will get sick of it and the big games will all find a new decade to lambaste to death in their games.

 

I know im not the only one noticing this. Opinions?

 

Well personally from a gameplay stance. You are correct that most of these modern shooters are just cookie cutter games that aren't really worth even paying attention to. Most developers these days have more of a focus on gameplay and graphics rather than story and it's necessary to create a balance of the two. If you get a chance, I would highly recommend playing Spec Ops: The Line. The game starts out as your regular modern 3rd person shooter but as you progress the game gets incredibly dark that it actually causes the player emotion and makes him question whether or not he's doing the right thing which I think is an accurate portrayal of what a modern shooter should be however the gameplay is quite bland but I believe the story more than makes up for it. If you've played Max Payne 3 and got a dark and depressing vibe with it then you will love Spec Ops: The Line.

 

However, i'm going off tangent here. Games like Halo and Call of Duty have been making the FPS genre seem boring and generic. The only titles that I play of the FPS genre would have to be Blacklight: Retribution, Team Fortress 2 and the bioshock series (specifically Bioshock 2 at the moment). I would love to go in-depth about each of these games but unfortunately I've already made this post too long lol.

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The problem is people only seem to play COD and COD will always be COD.

 

I think that the Call of Duty games are repetitive, but I also think they get far too much hate. The game itself is more of an arcade shooter than anything so never mind the whole realism crap. The game plays very fluently on the console, or on a competent PC. The story is boring, but the voice acting is actually pretty cool.

Edited by ~Scootaloo
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I don't think it would hurt much for there to be a drop in the number of different FPSes, or even just have the same amount, but take more risky design philosophies when making it. Also, to the companies, please stop the full game sequels if you're creating what could basically be a game patch plus some DLC

 

This is exactly where I wanted to go with this. Just do something DIFFERENT. I am primarily a Strategy gamer, any game that rewards you for out thinking your opponent is much more rewarding to me than simply having a better kit/reflex's and as such the only time I truly get into an FPS these days is BF3 when I am playing with enough friends we can actually rely on each other to create a team strategy. Other than that I only dabble whenever i want to take a break. 

 

 

The problem is people only seem to play COD and COD will always be COD.   There are loads of less well covered FPS games such as halo where your using very random wepons that are (literally) out of this world

 

That's why I dont play games quite like that. I havent played Halo since 3 or CoD since MW2. But they both just used to be whomever gets the best kit/weapon and has the best reflex's and map knowledge wins. Not my thing, they may have changed or evolved though, havent tried the recent rendition.s

 

 

If you get a chance, I would highly recommend playing Spec Ops: The Line.

 

That is the exact game i had in my mind for being different when I was reading Rockmare's post. Phenomenal game that feels/acts/IS different and ties actual feelings into the act of shooting someone. Loved every second of it (even when I hated it)

 

 

But I love the opinions everyone has shared, it seems the FPS rut has affected more people than I had realized up to this point! 



I thin that the Call of Duty games are repetitive, but I also think they get far too much hate. The game itself is more of an arcade shooter than anything so never mind the whole realism crap. The game plays very fluently on the console, or on a competent PC. The story is boring, but the voice acting is actually pretty cool.

I would actually agree with you there Scoot. I personally hate CoD. Hate arcade shooters. I find no enjoyment in them. But its like WoW. You can hate all you want but their making millions so they must be doing something right. Ill give them their props for that, as long as they don't force the rest of their competition to create arcade games to try and ride the coat-tails. 

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This is exactly where I wanted to go with this. Just do something DIFFERENT. I am primarily a Strategy gamer, any game that rewards you for out thinking your opponent is much more rewarding to me than simply having a better kit/reflex's and as such the only time I truly get into an FPS these days is BF3 when I am playing with enough friends we can actually rely on each other to create a team strategy. Other than that I only dabble whenever i want to take a break. 

 

 

 

That's why I dont play games quite like that. I havent played Halo since 3 or CoD since MW2. But they both just used to be whomever gets the best kit/weapon and has the best reflex's and map knowledge wins. Not my thing, they may have changed or evolved though, havent tried the recent rendition.s

 

 

 

That is the exact game i had in my mind for being different when I was reading Rockmare's post. Phenomenal game that feels/acts/IS different and ties actual feelings into the act of shooting someone. Loved every second of it (even when I hated it)

 

 

But I love the opinions everyone has shared, it seems the FPS rut has affected more people than I had realized up to this point! 

 

I would actually agree with you there Scoot. I personally hate CoD. Hate arcade shooters. I find no enjoyment in them. But its like WoW. You can hate all you want but their making millions so they must be doing something right. Ill give them their props for that, as long as they don't force the rest of their competition to create arcade games to try and ride the coat-tails. 

 

This is all true and I think that what makes these FPS games so generic is that there is no way for the player to relate to the character in the story element of these games. Let me give you an example of this and I didn't realize it until I had looked it a little more deeply. When you ask someone which is a better game Bioshock or Bioshock 2. Most people would say that the first Bioshock was a better title but in my opinion I think Bioshock 2 did a much better job at establishing a relationship with the player and protagonist. In Bioshock you play as someone visiting Rapture for the first time and you discover what happened to the city through audio logs and learn of its philosophy. When it came to Bioshock 2 most people and even today complained that Rapture had already been done and wondered how it would compare to the first one. In Bioshock 2 you play as a Big Daddy, now besides the differences in appearances and abilities there was one HUGE difference that most people don't see. As I stated before in the 2nd game you play as a Big Daddy and what does that mean? It means that not only do you know what happened in Rapture but so does the character you play as. Not only that but seeing as how you play as a Big Daddy which is one of the most feared enemies in the city it begins to make the player doubt that nothing can stop him. However in the first 10 minutes of the game you would be wrong about that. Cause in those 10 minutes you already go up against the most powerful enemy in the game which is the Big Sister. In your first fight with this new enemy you notice that she can deplete your health at an incredible rate while you can barely do as much as a scratch. Through this fight and others you begin to realize that you are not the most powerful being in Rapture and it becomes one of your motivations to do so. Plus if it takes more than one .50 caliber round to down a simple splicer then you know that your enemies have gotten stronger and in the event that some people don't know. A .50 caliber round is the most powerful infantry round. It can actually shoot off a freaking limb and these bullets are mainly used against armored vehicles. To become stronger in this game you need to research your enemies by doing special combos to maximize your research and earn better gene tonics. Even in the story of the 2nd game you begin to learn more about your bonded little sister and begin to develop a father-daughter relationship throughout the course of the game. Hell, even the add-on for Bioshock 2 was probably the best ending for the Rapture saga if anyone has played it. 

 

Anyways I apologize for the incredibly long post but I just wanted to get that out there and show that some of these FPS's should pull something like this off instead of just focusing on the action. 

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Ah CoD. I have this love-hate relationship with it. I'll say this; it's getting too repetitive but as someone mentioned above, it also gets far more hate than it deserves. It is a blast to play with friends, that's for sure. Recently I've gotten into Red Orchestra 2, which is a wonderful WWII game on PC. Halo is great, one of my favorite series of all time, but I'm just biased as I grew up on that. You know what FPS needs to make a return? Timesplitters. My entire childhood four-player Timesplitters 2 split-screen all-nighters or Halo: CE LAN parties at the one friends house who had gone and gotten the xbox instead of the PS2 or Gamecube. I had the Gamecube but I remember always being jealous of his Xbox.

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It'd a fad more or less. It's just like the stereotype that adventure fantasy games are well...medieval....In the early 2000's everything was WWII, and what are they going to release after?  Controversial Veitnam, the cold war?  thinking into the future has been giving limitless possibilities with game companies, that why it's everywhere...

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This topic reminds me of the new ArmA 3 game...

 

ArmA 3 is set in the mid-2030s... the previous ArmA games were set in the late 80s to the present day...

 

Personally I'm not a fan of the future setting, not at all, since ArmA is supposed to be "the" most realistic military sim, and I'm of the opinion that it can't be realistic if it doesn't exist! I'd rather have had them set it back in time rather than this Starship Troopers stuff.

 

I like to see the weapons and vehicles I know and love, not some weird "caseless" "6.5x39mm" rifle that some game developer made up, or vehicles that simply don't exist...

 

 

 

Gah.

 

(I wouldn't care if it was a normal shooter - but ArmA prides itself on realism and that clashes with nonexistent items)

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All of these FPS's... This is why I loved The Walking Dead game so much: it was fresh. It had compelling writing, the story drew you in, the characters were flavored with their own personality, it allowed you to connect with the main character, and more importantly, it wasn't an FPS. I took a look at Survival Instincts, an FPS which is based off of the AMC Walking Dead, and my eyes rolled in their sockets, even before I looked at the gameplay! I liked the AMC version a little becuase it was the first zombie survival series I had seen on tv, but I fell in love with the sheer quality of Tell Tale Games's portrayl of the Walking Dead. So the sheer fact that they mashed the AMC series with an FPS made too much sense. FPS's were and still are flying off the shelves, and they probably thought it best to join the band wagon.

 

The gameplay itself was boring and pretty repetitive from what I saw. Completely uninteresting to me. First part of the game, you go swinging a hammer or pointing a hunting rifle at the nearest zombie. Plus the fact that it's an FPS, so getting injured or bitten by a zombie kinda loses it's grim consequences, mainly towards the main character.

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You can do a lot more with a Modern/Future setting than you can with a WW2 or similar time period. People like the modern setting because it's a lot more relevant to them and it's very familiar to them. It's easier to recognize something like the M16 rather than the MP40 for a lot of people.

 

It's all when and good bashing CoD but it's not the setting that makes those games mediocre at best, it's the game play which caters to the masses who just want to sit down for half and hour and shoot something.

 

The modern setting is very easy to do for developers as well, it doesn't take nearly as much research and they have a lot more freedom, something that any developer wants. It's easier for games to relate to and you can make characters within the game that reflect stereotypes or who are based of big personalities, making the game more relevant to their audience. 

I have no issues with a modern setting as long as the controls feel good, there's a good story line if the game needs one and it runs at 60 frames per second on my machine.

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I think that the Call of Duty games are repetitive, but I also think they get far too much hate. The game itself is more of an arcade shooter than anything so never mind the whole realism crap. The game plays very fluently on the console, or on a competent PC. The story is boring, but the voice acting is actually pretty cool.

I won't deny that it's a good game (otherwise it would not be so popular, I have played 1/2 and enjoyed them) but, like you said, they are very repetitive and they bring out new games so often.

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There definitely needs to be more games in general, not just shooters, that use a more modern setting. Look at games like the Persona series that are set within ten years of the release date and everything is recognizable. Settings like that tend to leave more room for variety in locales, music and stories since we've been through all those eras and also dream about the future in space without it being too wild and crazy.

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Everyone has valid points, and am impressed at how well this thread has avoided any arguments ;) But I guess what it comes down to for me is simply that I wish there was more variety in some types of shooters. You can find different settings and era's in arcade style shooters all day (TF2, CoD ect.) But especially with Goose's comment on Arma3.. Everyone's jumping aboard the newest bandwagon, and their gonna ride it into the ground like everything else they touch :P

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The era in which the game takes place doesn't matter too much to me. However, you got me thinking about any time periods that might not have been visited much. Just about everything is "modern" or WW2 era. How about a fictional conflict during the Cold War? That would be novel. If anything like that already exists then I don't know about it. In terms of scenery, I did get tired of jungles and wastelands 6 years ago.

 

It's not the settings that I'm tiring of so much as it is the same, old formula being given a facelift every few years. That feeling that I've played a game before even when I've never touched it. Red Orchestra 2 is currently my favorite shooter because although it's another WW2 game, the very nature of the game prohibits carelessness and "going Rambo." That's the sort of change I want to see in this genre more than anything. Any time period is fine with me so long as they stop this one-man army BS and getting cover priority backwards (you take cover to avoid getting shot, not to miraculously heal after you've taken a dozen rounds).

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I think the issue is that there are only so many "real world" enemies you can mine from.  I mean, how many times can a game go back to killing nazis?  And when you;re doing realistic enemies in a modern setting, there's often real world political issues to take into consideration...

 

Personally, I'd love to see them go backwards and do an American Revolution FPS...

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I wonder why so many people enjoy playing games in such a realistic setting. I enjoy creative games with a unique artstyle and setting a lot more. Bioshock:Infinite, Borderlands2, Dishonored or DeusEx are some of my favorites. I have to admit though, that I enjoy gaming as kind of a break from the real world and therefore, the more creative a game is, the better. Hopefully there will be a steam/dieselpunk boom in gaming in the near future :D

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It's not the settings that I'm tiring of so much as it is the same, old formula being given a facelift every few years. That feeling that I've played a game before even when I've never touched it. Red Orchestra 2 is currently my favorite shooter because although it's another WW2 game, the very nature of the game prohibits carelessness and "going Rambo." That's the sort of change I want to see in this genre more than anything. Any time period is fine with me so long as they stop this one-man army BS and getting cover priority backwards (you take cover to avoid getting shot, not to miraculously heal after you've taken a dozen rounds).

 

Why do video games even need a set location again? look at TF2. The maps are set in rural places that hardly identify with anything. The game is amazing and it is a lot of fun. If you look at most of the maps though a lot of it seems to be set in the middle of nowhere.

 

Also TF2 is still on DX9 these modern shooters have fancy graphics and what not, but TF2 still kicks their butt's. Take a look at most shooters now ya sure they look great, but the game play is terrible.

Edited by ~Scootaloo
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It's not the settings that I'm tiring of so much as it is the same, old formula being given a facelift every few years. That feeling that I've played a game before even when I've never touched it. Red Orchestra 2 is currently my favorite shooter because although it's another WW2 game, the very nature of the game prohibits carelessness and "going Rambo." That's the sort of change I want to see in this genre more than anything. Any time period is fine with me so long as they stop this one-man army BS and getting cover priority backwards (you take cover to avoid getting shot, not to miraculously heal after you've taken a dozen rounds).

 

Ah how flawlessly the words match my own opinions. I haven't gotten into RO2 yet, I used to play Arma2 and the WW2 spin off of it but its so damn hard to find a good and fun server that I just kinda fell out of it.  But your points are spot on with what I feel

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I think that they will eventually move out of the modern era and move to something else. CoD is now the mainstream FPS, but I believe that Call of Duty was pretty good before it got repetitive. I liked it at CoD 4 and CoD 5. Even though CoD 5 is another WW2 game I was a huge zombies fanboy and still play custom World at War Zombies on the PC. Currently my favorite shooter is TF2 for many reasons. People don't try for a good "KD", people always play the objective and it is relaxing and fun. I believe that CoD now has taken all of the skill out of a generation of FPS players. They put in overpowered weapons, kill streaks and unbalanced it to make some people have fun in by getting tons of kills. If most CoD players were dropped into a FPS like Counter Strike they would get destroyed.

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