Jimquisition: Cutscenes Aren't A Failure State

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The big problem with cut scenes is that some developers don't use them properly. So you end up hating the cut scenes because they boring, poorly timed, and you just wish you could skip it and get back in the game.

When done right they can help bring more emotional focus to a particular part of your game and yes, provide a little respite after an intense fight as you mentioned.

Its like the overuse of hand held cameras in movies today. A few directors use it well and then a bunch of poor directors use it poorly. Just like any other tool it comes to how you use it.

Are there really many people who complain about the existence of cutscenes? I wasn't really
aware of that
Anyway, it's always the same. Do whatever you think is necessary for your game. If you think you need cutscenes, use them. If you think you can make it better without them, then don't use them. However, whatever you do, you'll never be able to please everyone. Someone will dislike a game for the exact same reasons that someone else will like it. For example, some people like hl because it doesn't have cinematic sequences where it takes away the controls and others dislike exactly that.

One thing though. Please, for the love of everything, make your cutscenes skippable and pausable.

GothmogII:

Therumancer:

GothmogII:

Who's talking about removing the interactivity?! For that matter...is the assumption here that if a cutscene is there, then it -must- be replacing something that could have been rendered within the context of the gameplay?

Yes, I am a firm believer that anything that is done in a cutscene could be rendered in game play, and if it can't then they should replace it with something that winds up in the same basic place but can be done with game play.

For example, if you want to have a scene of me fighting a giant robot that is talking smack, have it talk smack while I'm actually fighting it, don't make a cut scene of my character fighting the robot while it talks smack. If I wanted to watch that I could put on a movie.

Now to be fair, sometimes cut scenes can be used well, and cover up flaws in the abillities of the designers to actually make something they feel needs to happen gamable, when they can't think of any other ways. Sometimes the cut scenes are quite good in of themselves even. This is why you have the catagory of "Interactive Movie" the "Ice Dancers" to the "Figure Skaters" of actual game designers so to speak.

I mean sure, an "Interactive Movie" can still be a good product, just don't call it a game.

But why single out cutscenes then? (Besides being what the topic under discussion is about.) I mean, there was a point in gaming where narrative, music or artwork more complicated than a handful of pixels didn't exist. And all of those things have been successfully incorporated into videogames despite having no bearing on the concept of the existence of a game at all.

We don't say:
WoW is not a game because it has music.
Halo is not a game because it has a story.
Team Fortress 2 is not a game because it has artwork.

Again, none of which touch directly with the framework or 'rules' of the literal definition of a game.

I guess...is a cutscene in this instance is being viewed as extraneous? But if it's extraneous, how exactly does that -change- a game to such an extent that it is no longer a game? If that is the case then we are been given an example of something for which the presence of a cutscene/s is something that informs the totality of that thing, such that if it is taken away the thing becomes meaningless, or less meaningful. But then, we are indeed talking about a piece of interactive fiction and not a game.

But taking it in percentages, does a game of which 1% or .1% is comprised of un-interactive cutscenes cease to be a game?

Again, absurdist arguements. I'm going to stop responding to posts that try and use this tactic probably. Indeed I almost hope The Escapist would make it an enforcable offense similar to trolling since it derails conversations.

All of the things that you mention seperatly, are simply the tools the game is built from, the key is interactivity. The cut scenes which influance the game, cannot be interacted with, that is the issue entirely. Trying to make arguements about how "well, why can't you say that about there being art or music" is simply absurd, and does you or your case no credit.

I'll ignore the bit about Half-Life since I already conceded that in another message.

When it comes to cut scenes, it's not a matter of percentage, it's a situation where if at any time the game basically uses cinematics to do things that could, or should have been done in gameplay, it ceases to be a game, and becomes an interactive movie. Now an interactive movie can be a fine product, but it's not a game.

For example, if your going to have a scene with a robot talking trash while you fight it, actually let the player fight the robot while it's talking trash. If you decide to say halt all gameplay and then show the player character fighting the robot while talking trash before it goes into the fight, you just totally nixed your product as being a game. It might still have gameplay elements, but it's now an interactive movie rather than a game, since you are not in control of the game at key moments.

Granted, very few games, especially from the modern era, can truely be considered games, and that's exactly the point of these kinds of debates. It hasn't become a small problem with an occasional interactive movie being billed at a game, it's a situation where pretty much every game is an interactive movie.

BreakfastMan:

Therumancer:

Yes, I am a firm believer that anything that is done in a cutscene could be rendered in game play, and if it can't then they should replace it with something that winds up in the same basic place but can be done with game play.

For example, if you want to have a scene of me fighting a giant robot that is talking smack, have it talk smack while I'm actually fighting it, don't make a cut scene of my character fighting the robot while it talks smack. If I wanted to watch that I could put on a movie.

Now to be fair, sometimes cut scenes can be used well, and cover up flaws in the abillities of the designers to actually make something they feel needs to happen gamable, when they can't think of any other ways. Sometimes the cut scenes are quite good in of themselves even. This is why you have the catagory of "Interactive Movie" the "Ice Dancers" to the "Figure Skaters" of actual game designers so to speak.

I mean sure, an "Interactive Movie" can still be a good product, just don't call it a game.

Sorry, I just cannot get behind this line of reasoning. You are basically saying that stuff like Facade are games, because they do not have cutscenes, but stuff like Half Life 2, Bioshock, or Deus Ex, are not games, but are instead interactive movies because they have maybe 1-2 cutscenes. Basically, every game ever (baring early ones who could not convey story and more recent experimental ones) is an interactive movie. To me, that just sounds absurd.

And how do cutscenes fundamentally change the nature of a game? The game is still interactive. It seems, to me, like saying that because film is a visual medium, the film cannot use sound or music to help convey the story, otherwise it ceases to be a film. Adding sound to a film does not stop a film from being a film. So why should adding non-interactive elements to a game stop it from being classified as a game, when it is still interactive? :/

The cut scenes by being non-interactive change the nature of the game by not being gamable.

The thing here is that the catagory of "interactive movie" exists specifically to deal with "games" that have cut scenes or frequently take control over what is happening away from the player.

The issue has gotten big enough for it to get mentioned in things like "Jimquisition" because of the simple fact that almost all modern "games" are not really games, but interactive movies being labeled as games. If that happened once in a while, it would be no big deal, but it happens constantly now, and cut scenes are being used as a shortcut to get around actual game design, without the people doing it, or the products, being taken properly to task for it.

I'm not saying interactive movies are a bad thing, I'm just saying that they should be labeled properly as what they are.

While not perfect, the best analogy is to say compared game design and interactive movie design to Figure Skating, and Ice Dancing. They are very similar, but one is a heck of a lot more difficult and competitive than the other, with failed or aging figure skaters who just can't compete generally becoming "Ice Dancers". The terms exist to seperate two very similar but differant things, for a number of reasons, including the amount of abillity involved in developing them. Animating a few guys fighting a robot to move a story along is a lot more difficult than say having the player actually fight the robot, acheiving all of the same results along the way.

Therumancer:
snip...

So... No game that has ever tried to tell a story, barring one or two rare exceptions like Dear Esther, are actually games. They are something completely different. If a game is ever non-interactive at any time, it is no longer a game. Sorry, I just cannot get behind that idea. You seem to be creating a rule that cannot be broken, and if it does, it is no longer that form of art, which does not sit well with me. I really don't think that art should have hard and fast rules applied to what it is. They should have guidlines that can be broken if one knows what they are doing.

Besides, this make the entire thing needlessly complicated, applying two different titles to things that are so similar as to be considered the same thing by most people. Why not call them the same thing, or are labels just that important?

EDIT: Re-reading your post, it seems I am missing something. Are you calling games with cutscenes "interactive movies", but still games? Your definition as to what qualifies as a game or an interactive movie is so vague, I find it hard to know what you are talking about. So, the player should be able to control of every facet of what is happening in the game for it to be considered a game? Because that is what your definition sounds like to me...

EDIT2: And I think my analogy is stronger. The primary defining aspect of films is that they are visual and should convey it's story visual, similar how that a defining aspect of a game is it's interactivity and it should convey it's story through that interactivity. But, most films use sound, a decidedly non-visual experience, to help tell the story, yet they remain films. Most games use cutscenes, a decidedly non-interactive experience, to help tell the story, yet they remain games. See where I am going with that? And, I think that was Gothmogil's point, which you so casually brushed off without addressing. How is a movie using something that is not visual to convey the story different from a game that is using something that is not interactive to convey the story?

Im sure it makes more sense in the content of the article but how does Speilberg hate cutscenes? Wouldnt that like Stephen King saying he hates text boxes?

Spot1990:
I hated the Half Life 2 way of doing things. "Just stand there and listen to my exposition dump" I usually just ended up dicking around and listening because nothing interesting was happening on screen. It was just a first person view of a guy talking at me.

You've just described life there.

Callate:
I agree with the basic premise that cut-scenes aren't in and of themselves a bad thing, and that it's perfectly reasonable to use them for many of the purposes Jim describes (downtime, pacing, reward, story exposition, etc.)

However, the matter of taking control away from the player leads to one of my pet peeves.

It's okay, in my mind, if the cut scene takes away the player's control to do what they would have done anyway, to do things that are in character for the player's character, to advance plot through characters who aren't under the player's control, and so on.

But please, for the love of all that's good and holy, don't take away my control to have my character do something stupid, and then bring me back to deal with the resulting clusterf@#$%. Don't have me "ambushed" and "captured" by three of the mooks I've been turning into fine mince by the hundreds for the last hour. Don't set me up as a nigh-invincible amoral killing machine in-game, and then have me fail to kill someone I actually have reason to kill because it might interrupt their monologue (while they, incidentally, prepare their escape pod for launch.) Don't have me clearly and handily winning a fight, and then have the bad guy win anyway in the cinematic.

There are ways to get the plot where the designers need it to go without abruptly turning the player into a marionette. I recognize that there are games that force players into these kinds of situations even without using cut scenes, but they are the area where, to my mind, cut scenes are used most often not as a tool or a device, but as a crutch. And that, I wish would stop.

^^^^This. You hit it right on the head here.

Jim argued that developers as any other artist should be able to use the tool they want and need, and nobody should impose onto them that they can't use cutscenes.

Unfortunately, most of the time the opposite is true. Someone up high frequently forces developers to add cutscenes into games.

Most game development jurisdictions have a law that says "You need to use a drill, no exceptions."

A lot of this is explained in depth here:

http://www.penny-arcade.com/patv/episode/cutscenes

(The episode makes much of the same argument as Jim, but takes a neutral POV by examining all arguments.)

One of the main reasons cutscenes exist is for marketing purposes. Pre-rendered and cinematic in game cutscenes make great trailers and tv spots. In the corporate world marketing isn't just a department, many times it is the end all be all. So developers are set to create cut-scenes fora few 30 second to 5 minute long commercials, and and to justify the time and resources they make them longer and put them into the game.

One of the more annoying examples of poorly done cutscenes due to executive meddling is Deus Ex: Human Revolution.

One of the most appealing things for the artists behind the game, was the fact that the world revolved around high tech prostethics. This allowed their imagination to run wild and create wildy visually varying prosthesis for the player to choose. Early design plans had an augmentation upgrade system that didn't just change stats, but allowed the player to swap visually distinct limbs - adding character customization to the game.

However Square Enix wanted some nifty animated scenes to place in commercials. (They also wanted action packed boss fights). Given Eidos Montreal's limited resources they had to remove character customization, and different looking augs for Adam Jensen to save time and prevent complications.

^^^

And anyone who has played the game knows how the cinematics worked in the game. They worked exactly as the writing crutch Callate described, solely there to force the protagonist into immersion breaking stupid decisions.

Jim previously trashed and bemoaned the movement to make games more cinematic and attacked developers who are trying to be filmmakers instead of game developers. The reason many games use cutscenes as a crutch are because some writer or developer is thinking in the constraints of a movie or want to make one.

Therumancer:

GothmogII:

Therumancer:

Yes, I am a firm believer that anything that is done in a cutscene could be rendered in game play, and if it can't then they should replace it with something that winds up in the same basic place but can be done with game play.

For example, if you want to have a scene of me fighting a giant robot that is talking smack, have it talk smack while I'm actually fighting it, don't make a cut scene of my character fighting the robot while it talks smack. If I wanted to watch that I could put on a movie.

Now to be fair, sometimes cut scenes can be used well, and cover up flaws in the abillities of the designers to actually make something they feel needs to happen gamable, when they can't think of any other ways. Sometimes the cut scenes are quite good in of themselves even. This is why you have the catagory of "Interactive Movie" the "Ice Dancers" to the "Figure Skaters" of actual game designers so to speak.

I mean sure, an "Interactive Movie" can still be a good product, just don't call it a game.

But why single out cutscenes then? (Besides being what the topic under discussion is about.) I mean, there was a point in gaming where narrative, music or artwork more complicated than a handful of pixels didn't exist. And all of those things have been successfully incorporated into videogames despite having no bearing on the concept of the existence of a game at all.

We don't say:
WoW is not a game because it has music.
Halo is not a game because it has a story.
Team Fortress 2 is not a game because it has artwork.

Again, none of which touch directly with the framework or 'rules' of the literal definition of a game.

I guess...is a cutscene in this instance is being viewed as extraneous? But if it's extraneous, how exactly does that -change- a game to such an extent that it is no longer a game? If that is the case then we are been given an example of something for which the presence of a cutscene/s is something that informs the totality of that thing, such that if it is taken away the thing becomes meaningless, or less meaningful. But then, we are indeed talking about a piece of interactive fiction and not a game.

But taking it in percentages, does a game of which 1% or .1% is comprised of un-interactive cutscenes cease to be a game?

Again, absurdist arguements. I'm going to stop responding to posts that try and use this tactic probably. Indeed I almost hope The Escapist would make it an enforcable offense similar to trolling since it derails conversations.

All of the things that you mention seperatly, are simply the tools the game is built from, the key is interactivity. The cut scenes which influance the game, cannot be interacted with, that is the issue entirely. Trying to make arguements about how "well, why can't you say that about there being art or music" is simply absurd, and does you or your case no credit.

I'll ignore the bit about Half-Life since I already conceded that in another message.

When it comes to cut scenes, it's not a matter of percentage, it's a situation where if at any time the game basically uses cinematics to do things that could, or should have been done in gameplay, it ceases to be a game, and becomes an interactive movie. Now an interactive movie can be a fine product, but it's not a game.

For example, if your going to have a scene with a robot talking trash while you fight it, actually let the player fight the robot while it's talking trash. If you decide to say halt all gameplay and then show the player character fighting the robot while talking trash before it goes into the fight, you just totally nixed your product as being a game. It might still have gameplay elements, but it's now an interactive movie rather than a game, since you are not in control of the game at key moments.

Granted, very few games, especially from the modern era, can truely be considered games, and that's exactly the point of these kinds of debates. It hasn't become a small problem with an occasional interactive movie being billed at a game, it's a situation where pretty much every game is an interactive movie.

Actually...I wasn't trying for absurdity that time. Only pointing out that those aspects too are extraneous and do not, even taken as part of a whole define a game, again, it's the rules that do that.

But when I say something like:

This is like saying a cake isn't a cake because you put a cherry on top. I'm not saying it just to give you a silly image in your head. I'm saying it because I'm trying to create a analogy to make things a little simpler for both myself and you to understand...though clearly that isn't working. x)

But, with regards to the above, yeah, they're tools, but you know what? None of those are interactive in the slightest! I know...we like to think we're right there, and if the experience crafted is a successful one, I reckon that that -should- be the feeling you as the player are getting, but what I'm trying to get at, is that a cutscene is no different than using music, artwork and story to further and enhance this experience and only detracts from the game when it is used improperly, not merely used.

The only stumbling block I'm having with this is your insistence that the existence of such fundamentally changes the nature of a game entirely, and to such an extreme degree that it is no longer considered a game regardless of the full and actual impact on any given game. And more, that the use of cutscenes in games is a -problem- rather than a device that can be used for good or ill.

And sir, really, I can only disagree at this point, because there's not much else I can say...at least without devolving into further awful analogies rehashing the same things.

As for the trash talking robot, wasn't -this- soooo much fun?:

me? I'm a fan of cutscenes it doesn't matter what game I'll watch the cutscenes

while interactive cutscenes don't hold my focus because I move during it and end up missing a important plot point.

I have to agree with you Jim. In fact, Zenoblade makes a good use of it's cut scenes. Even FFXIII-Return of the vile, had a few good cut scenes. While I agree with you, I think game developers really need to look at cut scenes as a way to keep the story going, but without letting it drag on and on and on(And I'll stop here because some cut scenes get a bit too long, like this post). So yeah, tighter cut scenes that don't drag on would be better then no cut scenes.

Cutscenes can be amazing. I just don't want to have to watch one for more than 6 minutes personally. As with film the actors (voice actors here), the script and the shot composition really make or break it.

It's popular to bash cutscenes because it is sometimes felt like it is forced on the player before being able to progress. I've never really felt that way myself but I guess if I was impatient I'd want to remove them too.

You used clips from Dungeon Keeper and Deadly Premonition witch I approve but you didn't use clips from Legacy of Kain Soul Reaver 2 nor Abe's Odyssey.

Jim, I am disappoint.

I like cut scenes, there's nothing wrong with them. Sometimes they are a bit cheesy, but I like being brought along in that method generally.

Jimothy Sterling:

the antithesis:

Jimothy Sterling:
When you nee4d the protagonist to do certain things, when you want the camera to focus on something in particular, when just you want to present an awesome action sequence that the limitations of the game engine can't perform,...

then make a fucking movie instead.

Fucking no need because fucking cutscenes fucking exist.

Yes. Yes they do. So does the skip button.

Tell you what, though. I'll concede your point that cutscenes are a tool in the box that can work well when used effectively if you'll allow that cutscenes can be a crutch for lazy or untalented designers to do things they could have or should have done though game play.

I can see many reasons why game designers would use them without being "lazy". There are a few games that choose the interactive route all the way, and sometimes you miss those epic scripted things or don't see them the way the designer would like them to be portrayed, as an experience they want to involve the gamer in. And it depends on the kind of narrative. If they want to present it strictly from the POV of the player and the protagonists' shoes, then cutscenes are not really necessary.

Some just serve as an awesome display of OTT action choreography, engine physics, or tasty exposed skin like the Devil May Cry and Bayonetta cut scenes. Some are just because the game's engine itself is somewhat limited in environmental interactivity to be able to show all the things they want, or the scale of the game is too large to do scripted things in game, like Bioware games.

But yeah, silent protagonists do seem less realistic to me, I don't care what anyone says. Not that it bothers me that much, but it was a bit weird playing GTA3 with that mute bastard just willingly obeying the NPC's every stupid whim.

GothmogII:
[

Actually...I wasn't trying for absurdity that time. Only pointing out that those aspects too are extraneous and do not, even taken as part of a whole define a game, again, it's the rules that do that.

But when I say something like:

This is like saying a cake isn't a cake because you put a cherry on top. I'm not saying it just to give you a silly image in your head. I'm saying it because I'm trying to create a analogy to make things a little simpler for both myself and you to understand...though clearly that isn't working. x)

But, with regards to the above, yeah, they're tools, but you know what? None of those are interactive in the slightest! I know...we like to think we're right there, and if the experience crafted is a successful one, I reckon that that -should- be the feeling you as the player are getting, but what I'm trying to get at, is that a cutscene is no different than using music, artwork and story to further and enhance this experience and only detracts from the game when it is used improperly, not merely used.

The only stumbling block I'm having with this is your insistence that the existence of such fundamentally changes the nature of a game entirely, and to such an extreme degree that it is no longer considered a game regardless of the full and actual impact on any given game. And more, that the use of cutscenes in games is a -problem- rather than a device that can be used for good or ill.

And sir, really, I can only disagree at this point, because there's not much else I can say...at least without devolving into further awful analogies rehashing the same things.

As for the trash talking robot, wasn't -this- soooo much fun?:

:) on the video

Other than that, I will say that your dealing with absurdity because the analogy is inherantly ridiculous in the context of the debate. A cake is not defined in such a way that adding another ingrediant to it, causes it to stop being a cake. The cherry is just part of the ornamentation your adding to the frosting. A game on the other hand is defined by being playable, and through the interaction with it, when you remove that interaction from it, it ceases to be a game. Using cut scenes is removing the interaction from the game, because you are no longer controlling the events of the game, or interacting with it, but rather just watching things happen. Interactive movie, is a label that exists to distinguish a form of entertainment that includes interactive and non-interactive components, as opposed to games or movies which are made up of one or the other.

It's a simple pass/fail situation, which is why I'm talking about absurdities. Either it's interactive, or it's not. If your including cut scenes that move the product without any interaction from the player, then it's not a game any longer.

I was pretty down on cut-scenes, but thankfully Jimquisition reminded me of the good ones. I found the ending cg for Silent Hill 4 woefully inadequate for dragging the woman around half the entire game. I do enjoy watching bosses bit the dust after I've completed the battle, ala Devil May Cry [1].

As I mentioned in another post recently though, cutscenes should always be skip-able. Even if it's an RPG, some guy out there is going to find it enticing enough to play multiple times, and some, if not all the cutscenes are going to be wasted time for him. If you're there for the gameplay it's unpleasant to have to set the controller down for 10 minutes at a time here and there like Gould's apartment in Crysis 2 and go make a sandwich or something. One of those typical 'Press Start, Skip' options would enrich that gaming experience a lot.

Bvenged:
I thought the cutscenes in Gears 3 were executed superbly. Same for the Halo games - yet they wouldn't be so good in CoD or Portal.

And there's a reason for that.

CoD's soldier of the hour, and Portal's... ugh... portal gun using character are silent protagonists.
While Halo's Master Chief/Noble Six, and Gears of War's Marcus Fenix are NOT silent protagonists.

Call me crazy, but I don't think that's a coincidence.

Also, who else misses games with opening cut-scenes that get you pumped to play?

You know, I think cutscenes are like stealth or QTEs. When they're done well, like in my all time favorite game, Silent Hill 2, great, give 'em to me. However, they're done poorly, like in my all time least favorite game, Metal Gear Solid 4, I just think they're a bother. Metal Gear Solid 4 failed by having a cutscene:gameplay ratio of about 1:1, even though a lot of it lacked any real purpose. 45 minutes of enough plot points to fill maybe 10 minutes. It really felt like filler there, and I could have spent that time, I dunno, reading a book. In Silent Hill 2, though, it's implemented really well. It doesn't have any cutscenes that would have been made just as good in gameplay, and they are all fairly brief and important. Anything minor the game wants you to see can be seen, you just have to LOOK for it. This is perfect for a game since it embraces the game aspect without entirely selling itself to gameplay. Also, I'd rather see the camera take fascinating camera angles in a scene that has no real interactivity than the standard camera. Zooming in on Maria in the cutscene just before James fought the two Pyramid Heads was great at showing me what was going on in an exciting way.

Therumancer:
Visual Novels are NOT a sub-genere of video games, they are a sub-genere of books (novels) that are simply working in an electronic format. "Choose Your Own Adventure" books gone electronic.

What about visual novels such as Symphonic Rain, Kamidori or Sengoku Rance?

Cutscenes are okay. But they fall into the same category as CoD style limited-interactivity "cinematic" experiences - things that do not involve playing the game. Too many cutscenes get very obnoxious very quickly.

i never had any problems with cut scenes. i was always happy when one came. like jim said, after a hard battle against a boss, you do enjoy a cut scene were you can sit back and relax a bit. and at times it is the only way to explain the story line better then being interactive all the time.
cant understand people why they winch about it. is it really a must to be in control the entire game like in HL? no, you dont have to be.

nice episode

I like cinematics more than cutscenes.

It just feels like more effort was put into it :D

I agree

Ive actually said it myself..they are just a tool, somthing that can be used for good or bad

The earliest game I remember where the cut-scenes really added to the game had to be Final Fantasy 10, they were so epic and extremely beautiful at the time, they made my eyeball's tingle.

Jim, I don't know if you read the comments but...

The moment I saw Deadly Premonition I squealed with delight. An underdog of a game with many flaws that was able to overcome them and provide an overall entertaining experience.

Oh and good argument as always. Taking my internal arguments and wrapping them up in a eloquent, posh sounding, and handsome burrito of joy.

lol s club 7 brings back some memories...

the antithesis:

Yes. Yes they do. So does the skip button.

All too often, no it doesn't.

Latest offender I've played: Lego Pirates of the Carribean.

Yes, I've seen the movies, and yes, the little gags can be amusing the first time through. Making me sit through them every time I replay a chapter in story mode, however, is a dick move.

I've always looked at cutscenes as take 'em or leave 'em.
But I do have *one* that I really don't like in God Of War III, the one near the beginning just before you get blasted down to Hades. I have just played through one of the most epic openings I have ever played and all of a sudden things get really slow.
I slaughtered dozens of olympian soldiers, saved the mighty titan, Gaia, from a ten-mile long sea-serpent/horse, killed the great god of the sea, Poseidon, by mercilessly beating him against the mountain he used to call his home, and successfully summited the tallest of mounts, Olympus. Topped off with Kratos and Zeus giving their war cries:
"I will have my revenge!"
"Petulant child! I will tolerate your insolence no more!"
I am no more ready to fight the king of the Gods than I am RIGHT THERE, and then he blows me down to Hades for a lot of block-dragging, note-reading, and lever-turning.
I understand they need to balance out the excitment of that opening with something slow, and I know it would be a criminally short game if you fought Zeus right there, but d*mn, it's just so anti-climactic!

They aren't such a bad idea, they can break up the action for pacing's sake so that the player doesn't get bored of the game play altogether in an action heavy game.

I don't like cutscenes usually. Some games have almost half an hour of cutscene before starting to play! What a way to drop the game imedeatly.

Cutscenes should be used moderatly, like 007 Nightfire, Lord of the rings (Two Towers and Return of the king), Zelda (Skyward Sword abused it a little in the beggining), they used greatly.

Or look at Kid Icarus Uprising. The characters talk while you play and it works perfectly, there are really few cutscenes, however you have a full story, delivered with the diologue. And the fewer cutscenes there are the better they feel, I fully agree with cutscenes after bosses for example. But cutscenes just for the sake of it are terrible.

And I think Jim misunderstood most people complaints. I never heard anyone saying cutscenes should be exinct 100%
Big Strawman.

Want big cutscenes? Make a movie. It's like COD campaign (after MW2). This games has so many cutscenes and shitty gameplay, I would rather have only the cutscenes and drop the repetitive gaemplay.

I think it's more of a case of using cutscenes appropriatly. Like when you're installing Red Alert 2 for the tenth time on a new HDD, computer or something else and you have to watch the 8 minute unskippable intro AGAIN.

Jim repeats it a couple of times, that in general cutscenes can be a fine tool, however he doesn't address how godawful it can be when misused or how some lazy developers or screenwriters will arbitrarily use them to fill in blanks without consideration.

When used well, they're damn effective though. Several scenes in Mass Effect 3 come to mind(because that's what I played most recently) where I thought "Damn, this is better than most movies made today." (Specifically on Tutunga at the end and the hovercar-chase on the Citadel)

There's probably also the finer details about whether a cutscene is designated as such, if it's pre-rendered only or if it's part of the engine.

In short, my point is that the debate is a bit more nuanced than what Jim is gunning at, making this vid another one of those generalizing and sweeping assumption videos that Bob always does.

Other than that, thanks for entertaining us Jim :)

Meh, cut-scenes might be good for story-telling but they're bad for immersion.

Jim Sterling: The S-Club 7 of video games.

I wonder how MovieBob would take to being called "The Zebrahead of film critics"

Anything will be shi when done by someone who has no idea what they're doing. Cutscenes are an important part of a game like any other element.

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