Something Old, Something New and... Everything Else!

26 Oct 2012

Jay 'Rampant Coyote' Barnson has penned an article on the current state of the industry and the resurgence of old genres such as first-person dungeon crawlers like Legend of Grimrock, and turn-based strategy titles such as XCOM: Enemy Unknown.

In short, what Jay seems to be advocating for is more diversification of the offering, and an open-minded attitude from gamers:
While part of me just wants to whoop and holler and fist-pump at the success of XCom: Enemy Unknown because its success demonstrates to a world of thick-headed journalists that TURN-BASED GAMING IS STILL RELEVANT AND FUN IN 2012 (and beyond!), it’s still not everything I want in a tactical strategy game. But then, no game ever was or will be. That’s the beauty of it. We’re never “done.” There’s still room for games like Xenonauts, guys! And a hell of a lot more. And if I really feel nostalgic, a trip to the original X-Com games is only a DOSBOX launch away. Life is good.

What really bugs me is the attitude that old-school ‘style’ and genres are primitive and no longer relevant in modern gaming. Ridiculous! I hope the success of games like XCom: Enemy Unknown, Legend of Grimrock, and lots of high-profile Kickstarter projects start curing this. I’m definitely seeing the glimmers of understanding from more mainstream gaming websites that, hey, maybe these games that glued a legion of gamers to the screen for hours at a time back when half our staff was still in training pants were actually really fun, and weren’t just fascinating for their novelty like flame to neanderthals. Through much of the last decade, it seemed like there was a time horizon oddly matching most journalist’s coming-of-age-in-gaming before which any game – with certain exceptions carved out only for legendary figures like Miyamoto, Suzuki, Meier, etc. – could be summarily rejected in its entirety as being unworthy of the modern gamer.

But as Jolly notes, the opposite mentality – putting the ‘classics’ on such a pedestal that anything new is instantly rejected – doesn’t make much sense either. Guys, I was there, too. I remember hearing you complain about the same things, too. These games weren’t perfect. Journalists griped about the same kinds of things. There was lots of room for improvement. And we, the gamers, were quick to jump onto whatever was new and shiny back then.
 
 

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