Jimquisition: Linearity versus Replayability

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the spud:
To me, the best way to add replay value is to create a world with many optional easter eggs and quests, that way on your second time through you may find something you didn't catch the first time around. It isn't necessary, though.

This, seriously, just... This. This is why I play Saints Row 2 so much is BECAUSE of the secret islands, outfits, areas, cars, all that, its just all there waiting for you to come back and enjoy. Also linear gameplay can BENEIFET a game if the games main mechanic is good enough. Also, while on the subject, companies, stop tossing all your love into multiplayer, get some singles out there or your just a bad underground band, its starting to make our community a little too bitchy..

The thing that pisses me off about shoehorned, underdeveloped multiplayer it that it gives me glimpses of what could have been excellent. Bioshock 2's campaign was great (Drill Dash > Anything the first Bioshock has to offer gameplay wise) and Dead Space 2 was okay on its own. Now, these games didn't NEED these multiplayer portions, but those rare, lag free moments in Bioshock 2's multiplayer where I was able to charge into someone with Aerodash and then shoot them point with the Auto-Shotgun were some of the best moments I've ever had in a multiplayer game. Yeah, the balance is overall overly reliant on stuns, slows and instant kills (elephant gun and crossbow, oh how fucking cheap you are), but the cool abilities and variety of weapons made all the crap worth bearing for a while. Dead Space 2's multiplayer just needed some balance tweaks(/a total fucking overhaul since the humans are insanely overpowered) and better connections. The objectives and maps were fairly interesting. The Necromorphs are kind of fun to play, and obviously the humans control fine they work just like Isaac. Honestly, I want a polished, multiplayer only Bioshock game. I've wanted a good multiplayer shooter with magic or special abilities since I first played Morrowind.

Oh, and I've recently been playing through Resident Evil 5 over and over for the past month even though I'm playing the exact same levels over and over while unlocking absolutely nothing new, although it's obviously because I'm racist.

Jim Sterling:
Linearity versus Replayability

Sometimes, Jim wishes he could be you so that he'd also experience the joy of enlightenment each Monday. This week, we look at the mythical struggle between linearity and replayability.

Watch Video

Jim, I have two suggestions for you so your series looks a little more proffesional and doesn't look like a low end youtube project.

1. Get a better camera.

2. Get somebody else to draw for you, their will be plenty who will do it for free.

Trust me, half the trolls will shut up if you actually make this look on par with Extra Credits and ZP.

I do see your point, and yes, I fully agree. I played the first three Spyro games much more than any Call of Duty.

This was my first time watching this show... and I don't like it. Mainly, Jim sounds like a complete twat. I agreed with most of what he had to say, yet wanted to disagree because he is playing such a dick. At least Yahtzee comes across as endearing when he is ripping apart his fanbase/industry/himself.

Things more important than an opportunity to being yelled at on the internet by random people:

Ambiguous subtexts
Deep and challenging themes
Visual and auditory design that is intrinsic to the game world
Morally, psychologically and culturally interesting characters
A narrative arc that is tuned to resonate with the genre and tone and genre of the game

That said, Joe Abercrombie, yay.

Pretty much put into words exactly how I feel about gaming today. I can't stand MP, I don't even notice if there is a MP mode or not in any game I buy. However, I've replayed more than a few games I've really liked many, many times. I can't even count how often I've run through Diablo 2, Max Payne 2, Deus Ex and Fallout (all of 'em). Replay value is replay value, and it's amazing how many people don't quite get that.

Metro Last Light will have multiplayer? Surprise to me.

Swifteye:

Frozen Donkey Wheel2:
OK Jim, here's the thing: I agree with you about 95% of the time, but....listen carefully here...YOU DON'T HAVE TO ACT LIKE A DICK TO BE ENTERTAINING. It's not like if you stop ripping off Yahtzee we'll all just lose interest, OK? You're a smart guy. PLEASE start acting like one.

That's his character. he's not a new guy who is getting his start here this character previously existed elsewhere. Besides Jim is narcissistic while yahtzee is the cynic and Daniel is the nice smart guy.

*sigh* Yes, I KNOW it's just a character he's playing. I'm saying his character isn't very entertaining, and I think he should stop playing it.

wow so to be a good game it has to be good.

Amazing insight. My life has become easier knowing this.

Oh is fire hot jim, I Can't tell

Frozen Donkey Wheel2:

Swifteye:

Frozen Donkey Wheel2:
OK Jim, here's the thing: I agree with you about 95% of the time, but....listen carefully here...YOU DON'T HAVE TO ACT LIKE A DICK TO BE ENTERTAINING. It's not like if you stop ripping off Yahtzee we'll all just lose interest, OK? You're a smart guy. PLEASE start acting like one.

That's his character. he's not a new guy who is getting his start here this character previously existed elsewhere. Besides Jim is narcissistic while yahtzee is the cynic and Daniel is the nice smart guy.

*sigh* Yes, I KNOW it's just a character he's playing. I'm saying his character isn't very entertaining, and I think he should stop playing it.

That's not going to happen. For one thing his character exists as an antagonist so when you show disdain for him and his ways that's only fire to the fuel. Second I believe he is entertaining in a strongbad sort of way which is a classic "jerk" archetype which often lends itself to being a more popular and entertaining archetype than say the nice guy (not how I would write things but nobody ever asks me to write anything) you can see it all over the net and especially in a lot of comedian routines that being a giant ponce is considered the way to go if you want to be successful. and seeing that so many of them are I kinda wish that wasn't the case because yes. Many of them aren't funny.
Jim sterling exists because most people have forgotten the joys of lighthearted humor saddled with forms of in depth entertainment.

bravo jim,

i agree playing multiplayer is a totally different experience, and the level of it's replayability is judged by how long are you playing it before you move on to another game.
now i am a sony fan (not a fanboy), and to me the king of multiplayer replayability is Halo Reach, that game alone makes me want to buy an XBOX

so good job jim and no i will not thank god for you :)

There are two things i can't stand to hear in game reviews:

1. Insulting a game because it's linear and therefore has no replayability

2. Insulting a games graphics even though it still looks good and doesn't cause any problem for the actual game play.

Thank you so much for talking about the first one! It's about time somebody did! I hope you'll talk about the other soon, please ^_^

Swifteye:

Frozen Donkey Wheel2:
OK Jim, here's the thing: I agree with you about 95% of the time, but....listen carefully here...YOU DON'T HAVE TO ACT LIKE A DICK TO BE ENTERTAINING. It's not like if you stop ripping off Yahtzee we'll all just lose interest, OK? You're a smart guy. PLEASE start acting like one.

That's his character. he's not a new guy who is getting his start here this character previously existed elsewhere. Besides Jim is narcissistic while yahtzee is the cynic and Daniel is the nice smart guy.

It's not like we are going to mix him up with anyone else.

I loved him last week when he took off the black coat, discarded the shades and talked to us as Jim Sterling, not "Jimquisition". That was him being his own passionate self and be was effective and distinct.

He doesn't need a "gimmick", this isn't prime-time TV where everything must make sense to the dumbest guy in the room.

What is Movie-Bob's angle? He doesn't have one, he does not need one. He's just Bob. Same with Jim.

Charmi the ninja:
I thought we all knew this already. Oh well, I guess there are some people out here that are still this narrow minded.
Btw, did anyone else feel like pulling their eyeballs out when the picture of "Jim Sterling King of gaming" appeared on screen?? :>

Good show - I still don't like yu very much - but good show.

Me too. I was quite impressed with his voice. I wish I could sing in something that resembles a tune.

( any rts you care to mention, i like supreme commander and wc3 personally ) portal, magicka, minecraft, terraria, THOUSANDS of hours of re-playability here nothing wrong with singpleplayer games, when did anyone say there was?

Here's my personal replay list:

RE4 Normal, 4 save files, ~20 plays
RE4 Pro, 3 save files, ~7 plays
Lost Kingdoms II, ~7 plays
Portal, 3 plays
Portal w/ commentary, 4 plays
Zelda: OoT Normal, ~10 plays
Zelda: OoT Master Quest, ~5 plays
Zelda: MM, 2 plays
Zelda: WW, 6 plays (3 each normal and "second quest")
Zelda: TP, 3 plays
Paper Mario TTYD, 5 plays
Super Mario Sunshine, 3 plays
Luigi's Mansion, 3 plays
Kirby 64, ~5 plays
Okami, 3 plays
Sonic 3 & Knuckles, who the fuck knows

Honestly, if the 1-player mode isn't replayable, and it's not Pokemon or a specifically multiplayer game (like WoW, Smash Bros, some shooters) I'll just rent it rather than buy it.

verylost:

JasonBurnout16:
I disagree. I like games having multiplayer. I like getting online in a new game, such as Bioshock 2, and playing with my friends. Guess that makes me a cunt-mushroom?

Not at all he was saying games don't have to only use multiplayer to have replay value in a game and it doesn't need to be shoehorned in because of a trend. While multiplayer is a good idea you wouldn't force the next Silent Hill game to have online multiplayer because it is said to lengthen replay value correct?

What i was trying to say - quite badly worded - is that I don't see why multiplayer cant be a decent way to add replay value? It has worked before and just because some gamers do not enjoy games such as Bioshock having multiplayer, other people may enjoy the experiance multiplayer brings.

And I wouldn't pretend to know about Silent Hill as I've never bothered to play it - but with games like Assassin's Creed it worked. So I can understand why other game companies are trying it.

I like watching these. They're funny, and usually make good points.

Last week's was especially good.

Great show Jim and very true. Love Final Fantasy IX as well but there's also the plethora of Bioware RPGs which have almost exclusively been single player (and awesome)

Loved the singing at the end too!

So, to recap: FF9, Portal and Bioshock are all good games?!?! Holy crap! It's not like there are video game critics out there by the hundreds who could have told me that, so I never would have known without you. [/sarCASM]

Seriously though: telling me that time-honored video game classics are good is like telling me that swearing in public is a bad idea. Not only does every functioning member of society over the age of ten know that, but you are also going to be wrong sometimes.

Take a risk, show us some video games we might not have tried before that are awesome and linear. Defend games commonly considered to be bad and show why they're awesome and game critics are stupids. But I really don't care that you think Mario is fun.

Brilliant! Just brilliant! Seriously I have the same arguement with losts of people. Sure I own over 100s of games but I always have a bunch I replay more then once. I've actually played the Halo campaign modes more then once. I've played every Final Fantasy made during Hironobu Sakaguchi's time dozens of times(That's 1 through to X-2 for those who don't know). I replay Super Mario titles more often the I use the toilet. Actually I've played every game that I own that isn't an FPS or 3rdPS more then once(Halo being the only FPS I've played more then once), even Mobile Suit Gundam: Target in Sight(Crossfire to the USA). I've played that 4 times

Replayability to me as a gamer who's been playing for 21 years is the ability to enjoy the game more then once. Sure I count New Game+ modes as well into replayability like what Crono Trigger first introduced(not sure if it's true but that's where I first experienced it) but it's not used very often and to be honest some games are better without it like the good Final Fantasy's(I,II,III,IV,V,VI,VII,VIII,IX,X,X-2).

I honestly wish the game developers would realise that there is a market for single player story driven narratives that aren't JRPGs. I love JRPGs for that reason and would love to see more games like Metal Gear Solid and LA Noire come out instead of Gears of Halo Duty: Battlefield.

Nnnnnno. I completely disagree with what has been claimed in this video.

I'm sorry, but it is an obvious fact of life that repetition is boring, and that, especially in this day and age where people are so used to constantly changing entertainment that this natural irk from the same old is extended even further, that any type of entertainment, not just games, have limited replayability.

Sure, playing a game once, twice, or more times can continue to be fun - but after a while it will inevitably get boring.

You know why games continue to be fun? BECAUSE THEY'RE CONSTANTLY CHANGING. good games are good partially because they lack repetition - under the argument that the 'same old' is a good thing, then games wouldn't change; it's BECAUSE people get bored of repetition and entertainment in general lack complete (as in, you never tire of it) replayability that people keep churning out new and different things.

The reasons why multiplayer games often (note OFTEN, not always) have more replayability than single player games is because the unpredictable element of humans means that you end up with constantly shifting scenarios; while with NPC's you can eventually work out where they will come out of and how they will fight you (in violence games at least, that's just one example), in multiplayer games you never know where the next guy/gal will be; which increases the replayability.

Sure, eventually you can begin to predict where people will be in games and whatnot ("he's always in the plane cockpit..."), but a) I'm arguing that no game has total replayability, and b) it still adds significantly to how long a game can be played without the encroachment of boredom.

You hit the nail on the head with this one Jim. I would take a well crafted singple player campaign over multiplayer any day.

Granted, if the multiplayer is good I will probably end of spending some time with it. If it feels tacked on or just sloppy, I'll mostly lose interest after a few rounds.

I would also have liked to see some of your suggestions as to how we could perhaps solve this unfortunate situation, but still you raise a good point.

Keep up the good work!

You heard it here first, if you like multiplayer games, you're brain dead. Maybe you should come up with some intelligent arguments instead of spending your time trying to be funny, while even doing a poor job at that.

I agree with you completely. In fact, I always get a new game primarily for the single player. And that FFIX cutscene made me a bit nostalgic. I had forgotten how hot Kuja was.

Treblaine:

Swifteye:

Frozen Donkey Wheel2:
OK Jim, here's the thing: I agree with you about 95% of the time, but....listen carefully here...YOU DON'T HAVE TO ACT LIKE A DICK TO BE ENTERTAINING. It's not like if you stop ripping off Yahtzee we'll all just lose interest, OK? You're a smart guy. PLEASE start acting like one.

That's his character. he's not a new guy who is getting his start here this character previously existed elsewhere. Besides Jim is narcissistic while yahtzee is the cynic and Daniel is the nice smart guy.

It's not like we are going to mix him up with anyone else.

I loved him last week when he took off the black coat, discarded the shades and talked to us as Jim Sterling, not "Jimquisition". That was him being his own passionate self and be was effective and distinct.

He doesn't need a "gimmick", this isn't prime-time TV where everything must make sense to the dumbest guy in the room.

What is Movie-Bob's angle? He doesn't have one, he does not need one. He's just Bob. Same with Jim.

Movie bob does have an angle. On that particular show it's being a movie snob (although how much of it is genuine and how much of it is theatrics for humorous effect is to be discerned) in his big picture and the overthinker he gets to show off the primary nature of his character which is him being a giant nerd. When jim took off his jacket and spoke frank that was a special moment but it wasn't really like he changed his character really he was just a bit more direct and bit less sarcastic but he still used all the insults and the funny little photoshop pictures just like every other video he's made.

The act of making a show for the sake of entertainment is a little more complex than "make this pap enough to where the mindless drolls get it" although I understand how you might think that given that this is a rather snobby place which holds such beliefs to be self evident. It requires looking at what sort of audience you want and how you wish to approach them. This is the style that Jim has chosen, one that irks and annoys people but that's exactly what the character is supposed to do. Be irksome and annoying but also show a level of intelligence that makes one think (oh this guy is pretty smart but I wish he'd stop acting like a jerk) which I find amusing cause to be honest a lot of people on this website are like Jim. Really smart people who's arrogance and ego are really off putting but they do deserve credit for what they say.

And that is the core of Jim's character. He represents the egotistical bravado that infest places like the escapist where one can get so full of themselves that they can think they are better than everyone else and show it by saying ignorant arrogant things as they rant about stuff they know little about or stuff they know a lot about but has so little value that in the grand scheme of things makes that person look like a big idiot.

I agree with the points brought up, but I wonder if there isn't some other reason for superficial added features. It is a highlight for people that are perhaps more casual.
-
"You'll notice he's listening to Ace of Base" -South Park, The Prehistoric Cave Man

Good point Jim. You still sound like a prick, but at least your a prick with a point.
Wait... Urm...

I always enjoyed the FEAR series. The feeling you get by executing squads of enemies and hearing them shout "No fucking way!" as you trample over them is great.

Combat is fun, story is alright. Have not tried multiplayer on Fear 3 yet, but the co-op seems... well alright I guess, but it really ruins the atmosphear of the game.

I fully agree on certain other games like Bioshock 2. Story was really lacking.

Edit: I thank God for Jim every Sunday, and every Monday he blesses me with another episode.

Aureliano:
So, to recap: FF9, Portal and Bioshock are all good games?!?! Holy crap! It's not like there are video game critics out there by the hundreds who could have told me that, so I never would have known without you. [/sarCASM]

Seriously though: telling me that time-honored video game classics are good is like telling me that swearing in public is a bad idea. Not only does every functioning member of society over the age of ten know that, but you are also going to be wrong sometimes.

Take a risk, show us some video games we might not have tried before that are awesome and linear. Defend games commonly considered to be bad and show why they're awesome and game critics are stupids. But I really don't care that you think Mario is fun.

I get the feeling you may have missed the point. It wasn't "good games are good lolol" it was good games don't need multiplayer/cheap gimmicks to have replayability but have the replay value by virtue of being good.

I liked the video but I would love to see a multiplayer Bioshock done well. When Bioshock 2 worked it worked really well but it would often descend into cheap shots and same tactics over and over. Some aspects were brilliant though and some of the plasmid/weapon mixes worked really well. If they went to town on it with nice dedicated servers and a good population playing it I reckon it would be an amazing multiplayer game. Unfortunately I doubt the customer base is there and it would be costly, difficult too, especially with balancing.

Anyway, FF9 rocks ass. I have probably spent more time on single player games but it's quite close, between MAG and CoD4 particularly I've amassed a lot of hours online...still, good game is a good game. Much time spent on FO3 and New Vegas and so long spent on FF7 and 9 that I wonder how my younger self found the time.

Jim, your show tends to be pretty hit-or-miss, but this was cutting-the-arrow-already-in-the-bullseye-in-half hit. Wanna go for a hat-trick?

*claps*
well said Jim, well said indeed.

My God FF9 was fun, not to mention its aesthetics. Its story was as batshit bonkers as any other FF but definatly fun timez, FF10-2 aswell... except for playing Shinra at that crappy sphere break game... little prick.

Okay, just because you can replay a game does not necessarily mean that it has replay value. It just means that you didn't fully exhaust to entertainment value present during your first playthrough. For example, I've played through Dead Space 1, an exceptionally linear game, four times. Each playthrough was less enjoyable than the previous, and by the fourth playthrough I had to struggle to finish (only did it to get the achievement for beating it on Insane). Why? Because with each playthrough, the game became less organic and more rigid. It fell into a recognizable pattern. Now, I'd say that replay value is the ability of a game to disrupt that pattern. A game like Dead Space does very little to disrupt the pattern, therefore giving it little "replay value," even though there may be alot of potential "entertainment value" to be gained by replaying the game.

Normally the times I replay a game (or do anything again) is when I have spent some time away from it and have a dulled memory that's packed with emotional content, and I want to remind myself what it felt like.

...Call it...Nostalgia.

Of course that's just about all I feel strongly nowdays: Nostalgia. That's why I'm now dedicated to makeing new experiences, so I can dig them up in a year or so and feel the strong emotions I rarely feel day to day.

Seriously, I watched six whole seasons of Digimon in the last few months just because it was the first anime I watched... And doing so made me realise just how much I loved it. I'd do the same for kingdom hearts but then I'd have to find it... and stuff I lost has practicaly flung off the face of the earth.

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