Gameplay styles people said would not work on a platform

Discussion in 'General Gaming Discussion' started by FAST6191, Jun 17, 2018.



    So recently it was revealed that the upcoming Mario Party would eschew an online multiplayer mode of the full classic gameplay style. It was a move some found to be quite questionable, however others contended that the gameplay style was inherently unsuited to internet play and it was the right move from Nintendo. Despite the efforts of some in that thread it is still a notion I can not begin to fathom, or at least have it go beyond "if you don't like it then don't play it but to omit it is at best terribly lazy of you".
    In previous times some said that Diablo style dungeon crawlers were unsuited to consoles, particularly around the time Diablo 3 console ports were announced. I had played Diablo 1 and 2 on PC, then no small amount of time doing co-op dungeon siege on PC. Moving onto co-op in Baldur's Gate Dark Alliance and similar games on the gamecube and xbox felt completely and utterly natural. The insistence some brought to such discussions left me wondering if I had experienced some kind of shared hallucination with my friends and family during such times. It was not even like a mouse and keyboard vs controller for FPS games where even middling players will often beat or seriously worry high end players of the console varieties, and even I can certainly appreciate mouse aiming at times.
    There are cases where one device or the other is in some way ill suited, the movement of real time strategy games from the roots in things like Dune II to games where actions per minute and micromanagement of more modern games being a great example of things that routinely fail with a controller. Though somewhat amusingly, not to mention bringing it back to the idea about Diablo style games above, the DOTA/MOBA style of gameplay may be something of an answer to that.
    Echoes of something similar also happened in the discussion of the game focused phone from Asus but that might be reaching for the purposes of this thread.
    Another you may see this in is in fighting games on the PC. Some seem to feel that it is unsuited to it, and it would seem historically publishers have as well.

    Controllers will obviously be a big part of this but screen architecture, the "community" for a device and other hardware limitations may also play. On the matter of "community" I once heard it said that consoles tend to keep multiplayer games active for longer where PC will drop them like a hot potato after a month or three.

    This is part of a series on GBAtemp where we consider game design, aspects of play and game industry concepts. Previously we discussed the value of online play.

    You are then invited to discuss any of the things above, or similar things where people have insisted a game or style of game was ill suited to a given class of device, either to your puzzlement or history ultimately coming to argue otherwise. You can also try for the opposite and attempt to argue that all attempts at a given style have been flawed and that future game developers would do well to not try.
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    Discussion (33 replies)
  1. mikechris33
    This message by mikechris33 has been removed from public view by porkiewpyne, Jun 17, 2018, Reason: One word post. Try posting something substantial.
    Jun 17, 2018
  2. B_E_P_I_S_M_A_N

    B_E_P_I_S_M_A_N I'm better than you I think

    Jun 7, 2016
    A lot of games are defined by the hardware they're produced on, with variables such as control schemes and portability being huge in defining the character of any given game. Some games transfer better to other control schemes than others; for example, I've noticed that a lot of DS games work really well on smartphones, due to their touchscreen-heavy control interface. Many games are less graceful in the transition, such as playing some DS games on a PC, or playing many twitch-action-based console games on a smartphone with no controller on-hand.

    However, a lot of what makes a good control scheme varies from person to person. This issue becomes more prominent over time, due mostly to emulation and the expanded number of control schemes available for games made on any given system. You may find yourself playing a game using a control scheme or controller the original developers could have never even dreamed of, such as playing Super Mario Galaxy on an Xbox 360 controller, or playing Street Fighter II on a touch screen. The nature of the controller has become a far more personal matter than it ever has been.

    For example, I remember one user on Reddit remarking how they were able to play Power Stone perfectly fine using touch controls. However, after giving it a go myself, I noticed that the controls where nowhere near as tight as I would have liked, and I decided that a controller would be the better option for me. Many would agree that playing a fighting game with a controller (or, in most cases, a joystick or keyboard) is the superior option to playing on a touch screen, but that doesn't mean playing on a touchscreen is impossible. It's a case-by-case basis. Some control schemes may work really well for a few individuals, even if it won't work out for even the majority. To reflect this attitude, control schemes should be more flexible, even if there are some out there who couldn't imagine ever playing a game with a given control scheme.

    Now, take this notion of control schemes outpacing the original hardware; the same general concept applies to Super Mario Party. The series had its start on the N64, and was really defined by the limitations and strengths of the system. There was no online support for the N64, but there were 4 controller ports, which lent itself to a local multiplayer, party oriented game. Fast forward a good 20 years, and the limitations of games and the systems that they're played on have drastically changed. In a an age where everything including your toaster can connect to the internet, online play with Mario Party games has not only become possible, but outright expected. Online play is to Mario Party what control schemes have become to many emulated video games; it may just not work for some people. Heck, it may not work for most people, considering the entire series was designed with local multiplayer in-mind. However, there will be people out there who would appreciate the option to play the game with strangers, and so it feels strange for the devs to deny them that option. I guess it's like seeing past the bridge of your own nose, from a development perspective.

    In this day and age, developers need to be more accommodating of different ways and styles of playing a game, even if some methods are likely to go unused. The fact that Nintendo is going against this grain doesn't really surprise me, especially considering their failure to keep up with many current trends in the gaming industry.

    tl;dr just because you can't see the appeal in playing a game a certain way doesn't justify denying everyone the option to play it that way.
    Last edited by B_E_P_I_S_M_A_N, Jun 17, 2018
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  3. Chary

    Chary Never sleeps.

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    Oct 2, 2012
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    I'm gonna go with MMOs on consoles. Final Fantasy 11 kinda crashed and burned on PS2. And I think for a while, the general idea was that MMOs wouldn't work on weak consoles. Then FF14, Black Desert Online and Elder Scrolls Online all kinda turned that idea around, and now there's a definite market for that genre on consoles.
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  4. Tom Bombadildo

    Tom Bombadildo Tom BombaDadlo

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    I forgot
    Regarding the Mario Party example, I think in 2018 it's not some kind of outlandish idea to have that particular game (or genre of game, for that matter) feature online multiplayer, and anyone who thinks otherwise is living in 1999 and should probably grow up. My biggest reasoning here is simple: Nobody would play Mario Party with random people on the internet, therefore the supposed "pffft people would just age quit pffffffft gg nintendo pfffft pls eat my ass miyamoto-san!" arguments are all invalid. When I say I want online multiplayer in Mario Party, I mean I want the ability to setup a party with my friends to play a round of Mario Party, not that I want to play with some random kiddies on the internet like people apparently think.

    One of the things those people just don't realize is that, when you're not a kid and you have jobs and responsibilities, it's hard to get a group of 4 people together to chill out and participate in a few rounds of a great party game these days. My friends and I used to meet once every couple weeks basically since we graduated highschool ~5 years ago, play some couch multiplayer stuff, watch some movies and gaming shit, and just generally chill out and have a decent time...until we all grew up and got busy. We haven't been able to get physically together for at least the last 8-10 months because everyone has just been so busy. They get jobs, have relationships, need time for themselves, can't afford to skip the hours of sleep they'll lose etc etc etc, and getting everyone to be able to pop over to someone's house for a night of fun is just simply impossible to manage these days with everyone's schedules the way they are.

    So you know what we do? We play those games online, because every other publisher in the world is aware that online multiplayer is, y'know, a nice feature to have. I've played Mario Party online all the time, thanks to Dolphin's excellent net play feature, and we all have a blast. Nobody rage quits, nobody misses our "totally hilarious reactions when I fuck someone over!", no one gets all bummed that we couldn't throw a controller at the TV with others present in the room, we just had a great time. Literally 0 of the supposed "cons" people list about it have never happened to us a single time. So why is it so outlandish for Nintendo to just, y'know, catch up to 2008 and include a simple online system to their damn console game?

    Oh right, it's not.

    Unrelated to above, one of the things I hear a lot about in some other circles are things like MMOs and more "hardcore" online games on mobile devices. I certainly know I shat on Fortnite and PUBG releasing on mobile phones (and, to be honest, still think it's an awful idea) but apparently I'm wrong and it's actually quite a blast to a lot of people and it's become incredibly popular so far. I can understand why, since it brings the games to a more casual audience and only requires a device basically everyone and their grandma owns these days (whereas "gaming" PCs and consoles aren't as widespread still), but I suppose I just can't see the appeal in gaming on a small device with no tactile buttons and such (for the most part) when I could have nice controller or KB/M setup with a nice big screen to fully enjoy the game.
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  5. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

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    Nov 21, 2005
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    While I am not surprised in the slightest about FF11 doing what it did I don't know if I really ever went there as far as hardware being too weak. I did see it a few times back then but don't think it worked for me.
    2002 in Japan, 2004 in the US were its release dates. By the time it hit Japan I was probably just about finishing up with GTA 3 (late 2001), for the US then I was done with Vice City and awaiting San Andreas (which would come to be all streamed into a massive world). Similarly however many years before I had done Phantasy Star Online on dial up on my Dreamcast and few would argue it was not a progenitor for this sort of thing.
    To that end it was more the absence of modems/network connections out the box that I probably wrote off console world of warcraft style MMOs* with (as well as monthly fees of course).

    *this was still the era of the almost turn based browser stuff being mega popular after all.
  6. king_leo

    king_leo Real Hero

    Sep 12, 2009
    De RigueurMortis
    I still believe that MMOs would never work on consoles, its just the nature of the beast. Even ignoring going from a keyboard/mouse to controller in an MMORPG there's too much of a gamble for both the developer and consumer. I mean a new console iteration would kill the MMO; if the servers are console specific then they'd die quick as the developers lose the majority of their market, nobody is going to pay for multiple PSN or whatever subs when a newer consoles out, even if both of those boxes are ticked then you've gotta factor the majority of people who are going to keep their older console hooked up just for an MMO. That and I wouldn't think the market isn't that big, I'm sure the majority of people who are willing to blow loads of money on an MMO already own a PC (which is much more suited for that genre).
  7. Xzi

    Xzi Virtual Bartman

    Dec 26, 2013
    United States
    Spiraling Out
    I agree with you that there's no reason why Mario Party couldn't have (full) online, particularly with friends. However, it's also not a huge deal to me that Nintendo want to reserve this one singular title mostly to local play, since it seems like it's meant to showcase the Switch's various capabilities as well. This is all assuming they don't just add in online later due to demand, which is still a possibility.

    Besides, Mario Tennis Aces is what it's all about for upcoming online play.

    Completely disagree here, MMOs are never going to be playable on a phone. Do you know how many buttons/keys are needed at high levels? That's assuming they don't dumb them down to the point of being unrecognizable as being the same games, anyway.

    TES: Blades is probably the closest you'll get on a phone, we'll see how well that goes over.
    Last edited by Xzi, Jun 17, 2018
  8. LuigiXHero

    LuigiXHero GBAtemp Regular

    Dec 16, 2014
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    I mean there was Phantasy Star Online which seemed to have been heavily popular on consoles.
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  9. kuwanger

    kuwanger GBAtemp Maniac

    Jul 26, 2006
    United States
    It seems like there's really two* different questions being asked: do controllers make a genre and does online vs local play make a genre. To both I say yes. MMOs that change controls end up being different or they choose to be generic and working everywhere. Similarly online play, even limited to friends, is different than being in the same room and not having to worry about latency issues; the only workaround is fundamentally taking latency out of the equation by either making less-action games, segregating play, or using some sort of referee that will inherently favor some players over others**.

    So, the question isn't if there could be online Mario Party. It's what changes would have to reasonably be made and whether Nintendo wants to push Mario Party into that genre. Or they could do a lazy port without any consideration of the new genre.

    Anyways, that's my IMHO.

    * The third one used to involve concerns about the game changing over time, needing updates, etc; ie, one of the PC-ish aspects that used to separate consoles from PCs which now don't exist. I'd say that's a major reason MMOs on consoles in the past were untenable.

    ** This may be virtually zero favor in the best circumstance. In the worst circumstance, it makes a game effectively broken.
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  10. Taleweaver

    Taleweaver Storywriter

    Dec 23, 2009
    I'm gonna divide my response into two groups:

    1) the sort of games that rely on specific peripherals. You don't see people asking for pokemon go for desktop, wii fit for playstation or VR-games for the 3DS. Nobody in their right mind would even want such a game on another platform, because without the hardware, the experience would fall on its face completely.

    2) the "just because you can doesn't mean it's a good idea" group. This (larger) group at least has ways to get around the limitations of the first group. Touch screens that emulate button presses are the main culprit here: it's possible to mimic actual buttons, but that doesn't mean the experience will be the same. In a similar way, old school FPS'es and RTS'es flat out play better with a mouse in one hand. The interesting part - especially about FPS'es - is that this genre gets redesigned to fit controllers. The pace is a bit lower, the amount of weapons is less, or the perspective gets placed behind the character (TPS). This gets a reverse effect, because playing these with a keyboard and mouse can feel overpowered (GTA missions where shooting is involved are a breeze compared to more racing-specific ones). Likewise: wii games with motion controls...IIRC, most of them can be emulated with other means as well, but lightgun games never will have that original charm. Or, for that matter: you CAN emulate that arcade game where you ride an actual car on MAME, but the experience will never be the same.

    I haven't followed the controversy around the recent Mario Party, but for now I side with @Tom Bombadildo. Perhaps the experience is less when playing online, but games designed to be played with others really should have the ability with others. Wouldn't it be great that if daddy or mommy is away on a business trip, they can still play with the family at the end of the work day?
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  11. SirNapkin1334

    SirNapkin1334 Renound Aritst

    Aug 20, 2017
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    Crap Mountain
    Hey, a new episode in Fast’s Philospophy!
  12. pLaYeR^^

    pLaYeR^^ GBAtemp Maniac

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    That's exactly what I want. I want to play Mario Party with random people on the internet. Yeah, I know, it's the most fun to play this type of games with friends and family. But my friends and family don't always have the time to do so. I agree that it would also be great to play with people on your friends list, because it would make a lot easier if you don't have to be at the same place. However, this wouldn't change anything if your friends and family don't have the time to play with you. Therefore, I think that getting connected to random people and playing Mario Party with them would be great. Because an online multiplayer mode that allows you to play full board game matches in Mario Party is missing, I don't play this type of games very often. That's why I hope that they add such a mode in a future Mario Party game.
  13. gamesquest1

    gamesquest1 Nabnut

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    so we all agree then we need a MMO Mario party battle royale
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  14. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

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    Nov 21, 2005
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    I do truly intend these to be the foundation for a discussion, however as starting such a thing with some kind of wikipedia style neutral tone is not the only way and I would end up making the same comments in the first reply I make I thought might as well combine the two. Occasionally I have had it such I have covered most of the juicy aspects with a position common/agreeable to most and thus stifled discussion a bit there but other times it provides people a position to try to counter argue against without having to first establish it.

    Speaking of GTA 3 I always remember that one gun that could put you in first person mode. Running out of ammo for that mid mission in certain missions made them so much harder, one that particularly springs to mind being where you are doing an ambush in an alley from up high.

    On pokemon go for desktop I would possibly have to do a *points at geocaching*. Granted if they actually did it properly and did basically alternate reality pokemon (effectively making the pokemon mmo in the process) then I would concede in that case.

    Wii fit for playstation I am not sure about as I was not following things there. Fitness games for the kinect on the other hand... when I was manning the 360 release section at times I ended up having to condense them all into collection posts and secondary things in mainline roundups.

    Lightgun games on the wii. I will give that at no point* did I think I would not like a real light gun (heh) but the house of the dead game for it did blaze its own trail
    *actually it might perhaps be every 5 minutes or so it would drag me out of the action for a second or two. Only time that happens in light guns is when I am given a foot pedal in front of me and thus end up with a completely unnatural shooting stance.

    VR games for the 3ds... maybe but its cousin in AR was being cried out for all the time at first.

    MAME car riding games. Have you seen some of the setups people have for such things? Three monitors, wheel and pedals, seat from a scrap yard... and that is as nothing compared to some of the flight sim peeps.

    "the amount of weapons is less"
    I don't know if I ever considered the Halo two weapons (maybe expanded to three for SMG, sidearm and long range) thing as a streamlining mechanic for controllers before.

    A "no buttons because for some reason we all thought apple was onto something" touchscreen like we see phones doing this last however long might be pushing it. However I don't know if buttons are inherent to high level play or an artefact of lazy/endless expansion game design. For the "functionally just diablo/action adventure/multiplayer RPG" style of game (as opposed to the older browser based things) then two main directions they could go, one actually being some of the things like Final Fantasy was doing and considering the world (there being spells in that which cared what direction you were standing in sort of thing) and two being specialisation being designed for and almost mandated (the tank, healer, dps... sort of thing all but mandated, as indeed it seems to be for some of the DOTA/MOBA style things, though I don't think those are well designed games when I look at the other aspects of them)..

    The board game aspect is a complete non issue. Minigames wise do any of those strike you as particularly high bandwidth or latency sensitive affairs such that it would take a considered effort and retooling to handle? Were it some kind of modern FPS thing with vehicles, bullets, bullet speeds, destructible terrain... all simultaneously shared by 64 people then that is a hard task. Most of those are 2d or light 3d positional and control data, often with minimal or even no interaction, for between 2 and 8 actors and a max of 4 players/connections if it carries on with the traditional model, the sort of thing you could almost manage on dial up.
    To that end the discussion almost necessarily had to go to how do you negate the drop out/AFK issue? Something "sub in AI" handles well enough.

    Amusingly the DS touch screen broke me for menus. Like right now I am playing Conan Exiles on the PS4 and it was clearly designed for a PC (a fact attested to by one of the item descriptions leaving LMB and RMB still in there) and while it has now all clicked for me there are times when fiddling with the menus that I want even a DS style thing to play with.
  15. kuwanger

    kuwanger GBAtemp Maniac

    Jul 26, 2006
    United States
    At 16:48 is a good example where latency/race conditions would actually be pretty horrible. Yes, probably 90% of the games are not too latency sensitive either because they're low action or they're one player mini-games which can be ran locally for that person. The rest are latency sensitive to varying degrees and it's already pretty bad playing Mario Party locally and dealing with concerns about how other players may be cheating but probably are getting palm injuries. Throw those minigames out or substantially retool them and you're left with a game that's no long really Mario Party.

    Even non-modern FPSs (circa 2000) were horrible on dial-up vs a decent ping. I'm actually pretty surprised with the whole Sm4sh online, which I've admittedly not played so I don't know how bad that is latency wise. I guess if one can tolerate that, one can tolerate Mario Party online.

    With Mario Party, I think a lot of people would willing "sub in AI" for an advantage. Ie, I don't think that's a good idea.

    In any case, I understand what you're trying to say. I don't entirely disagree with you. I just don't entirely agree with you. :)
  16. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

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    Nov 21, 2005
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    16:48 would be one of the harder ones but essentially still tetris or a jigsaw puzzle game, both of which I happily played on the DS. If we did have to consider it a bit further then maybe pre generate the random sequence, maybe don't do shared piece pool and instead some kind of griefing mechanic (think garbage lines in tetris, or indeed a lot of what you see in eggo mania).

    The dial up comment might have been a bit hyperbolic there as far as FPS goes. Still reckon those between those minigames that are essentially competitive solitaire and some kind of quasi VNC approach* (if people are already happy enough to play it over something as weak as a lot of emulator netplay is then I will count that in this), and maybe a slight cull of the harder to handle ones (or if we are being optimistic and assuming new things from scratch then some design constraints) that you have something unarguably Mario Party.

    *if they had to do essentially fully debugged online games for every minigame I could see that being untenable, some kind of slot in framework (think warioware DIY) or said almost VNC would obviate that though.

    For the AFK stuff I was thinking more people get booted for idling/no meaningful input. I don't imagine it would be too hard to skill match a player either.

    The point I was heading towards though was that Mario Party is perfectly primed with essentially no changes to be an online game and I would barely even recognise it as a change of genre/gameplay style, probably not even an evolution. Just a new feature on par with adding said injury causing stick when moving up from 16 bit minigame collections.
  17. Priestiality

    Priestiality GBAtemp Regular

    May 23, 2018
    United States
    2D platformers on anything, at least according to AAA companies. Remember, we lost MegaMan and Castlevania because their respective publishers just didn't think the genre had any legs left outside of portable/mobile. The continued success of the genre speaks to the board-driven philosophies of big studios. On the topic of Mario Party, I don't think there's a detriment to having an online mode, especially if parties are involved. They don't have to be mutually exclusive, because they serve two different purposes. If there's a demand for it companies should look into it. Obviously some requests are too niche or too expensive to be practical, but something like online in Mario Party doesn't seem like a tall order by any measure, especially since they could probably borrow code from Splatoon 2, at least on the back-end, connection side.
  18. Captain_N

    Captain_N GBAtemp Maniac

    Mar 29, 2010
    United States
    Phantasy Star online is not an MMO. Its multiplayer takes place in different instances of the same world with at most 4 players. Its not different then Diablo/Dungeon siege and Titian Quest. Remember A true mmo does not have instances with a few players per room. MMo's all have large worlds with more then 100 players at once.

    MMO's can work on a cell phone. Ever heard of Ragnarok online? Thats a MMO and works great on a phone as i have played it on pc and phone.
  19. Narayan

    Narayan desu~

    Sep 29, 2010
    Lineage 2 Revolution is already on mobile. It might fall down to your "dumbed down" category, nevertheless the game still exists and thrives and still is an mmo.
    Controls doesn't really define MMO, it's massively multiplayer online game mechanics is a bit different.

    There is a problem, or a feature for this specific game where it's automated to some point. It kinda kills a some interaction however for those who work and still want to play on mobile, we can leave it running while working.

    Even PUBG mobile is playable, not to the level of playing it on a pc, no, but still playable. I'm enjoying the game so far as I do not own a PC. It's also getting a first person update soon.
  20. The Real Jdbye

    The Real Jdbye Always Remember 30/07/08

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    Mar 17, 2010
    I always thought the DS was unsuited towards 3D games, any 3D game released for the system looked like a pixelated mess, whereas keeping the games 2D would have looked much better.
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