Our New Mobile Overlords

Our New Mobile Overlords

Mobile gaming is cheap, portable and easily accessible. So why so much hate?

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I have angry birds on my iPhone, DSi and computer. Mobile gaming is better because I do it on the bus.

The analog analog (Yes, I meant to do that. Wordplay!) would be walking into GameStop and trying to find the good games in the Wii section.

The analog analog analog would be going to Sears board game section. Ha!

what a lot of people havent realised yet is what mobile gaming has tapped into. the thing consoles used to be and that is somethign you could just pick up and play without having to worry about all the huge downloads, etc

looking in context of this weeks jimquisition consoles are becoming crappy pcs and mobile gaming is grabbing the perception of pick up and play that cosoles are loosing

I'm actually starting to ease more into mobile gaming now. My phone has a Diablo clone on it (which is surprisingly good. Dungeon Hunter 2, for those interested), and I've started to take my DS on the bus to pass the time.

I'm aiming on getting a GBA, upgrading to a 3DS, and getting both a PSP and a Vita in order to build my mobile library in case of road trips or long flights/delays.

I don't want to game on my phone. I also don't have any games on my Galaxy Tab.

All in all I don't like to play using a far too small touchscreen. And my tablet I use more or less as a reader with the added comfort of having videos with me when I'm too tired to read. Also, most games I find in the app store are awful and I once in a store tried MW2 (or something similar) on a tablet and it was the worst control I ever saw; there's no feedback from a touchscreen joystick.

I have a blackberry and it's not really good for gaming (at all).

I've been able to scratch my mobile gaming itch well enough with my phone that I haven't tried Nintendo or Sony's latest entries. Infinity Blade, SF IV Volt, King of Fighters, CoD Zombies, Temple Run, Where's My Water, and - yep - Angry Birds are just the tip of the icebreg. There's a lot of value and solid entertainment to be had on a device I've always got available.

Because mobile gaming is so new.

Wake up FFS!

What has it been, at least 20 bloody years since the GameBoy and Tetris ruled mobile gaming. Gaming STARTED out as mobile - little handheld Nintendo game watches were my first gaming experience - you know where?, the playground, in the early 80's. Wow, I've been a mobile gamer for about 30 years, but this article makes it out to be the next, new, big thing for blinkered console gamers to whinge about. If gamers want to whinge, I'll give them something to whinge about - I'll lend them my Atari Lynx!, they'll wish they never opened their mouths.

I play games on all platforms, I even write games for PC and iOS, so reading that lot just made me tired - tired of the so-called 'rise' of mobile gaming, and the herp-derp opinions of those who cast doubt on it. The world is not black and white, some gamers just care about games, not the specific platform that they are currently playing on. I'm a vet, I know my shit - I survived the ZX Speccy vs C64 wars of the 80's, the ST vs Amiga wars and the SNES vs Genesis wars of the 90's... Jaguar vs CD32, Saturn vs PS1, Dreamcast vs PS2, GameCube vs PS2, DS vs PSP... I even acted as an war-room advisor (troll) in the PC vs Mac wars, and every war inbetween.
Here's a blinder for you... people will defend the system that they paid money for. Anyone who paid $500 for an iPad will damn right defend it, just like anyone who can't afford $500 will damn right challenge it. Do we need a map of a nerds neural pathways to understand this?, or has it remained unchanged since nerds were invented.

Opinions change based on experience - get more experience and you get better opinions, and more ammo with which to defend your opinions. The only thing I've trully learned in all this time, is that we should assume nothing, don't take other peoples word for it, experience it yourself and earn your opinion. I doubted the PS3, doubted the Mac, iPad, iPod, iPhone, DS - those doubts were quelled by actually experiencing this stuff, and forming real opinions on them. I guess the general reluctance for people to do that is what annoys me more than anything.

Jhooud:
I've been able to scratch my mobile gaming itch well enough with my phone that I haven't tried Nintendo or Sony's latest entries. Infinity Blade, SF IV Volt, King of Fighters, CoD Zombies, Temple Run, Where's My Water, and - yep - Angry Birds are just the tip of the icebreg. There's a lot of value and solid entertainment to be had on a device I've always got available.

Yea, I think the only things getting hurt by phone-games are the dedicated portable game systems.

I think the hate stems from the notion that if devs are working on phone-games (which can be more profitable given how much more quickly/cheaply they can be made) then they wont make big budget releases but I don't think big studios like Bethesda and R* are going to divert talent from their big releases to set them to work on apps.

Look at the results: we have just as many good quality releases as we used to a few years ago...not that many but there's at least a couple of good releases every year. I think the only talent being diverted are those devs who would've been working on shovelware none of us would plan on buying anyway.

I don't have a smartphone, so our new overlords shall not stop me from doing shit MY way. Now why don't they make something lighter than laptops for me to play games on... OH WAIT.

I guess they've already taken hold over my mind. MUST RESIST TECHNOLOGICAL PROGRESS *Goes to read a book*

The biggest advantage the 3DS and Vita have over phone games is that my games aren't tied to the system the way that phone games are. If my 3DS breaks on me I can link my new one to my club Nintendo account and redownload all my games, and all my cartridges still work.

When I replace my phone (which will inevitably last at most 2-3 years) all the games I bought for my old phone are effectively gone. I may not even be able to repurchase the games.

I hate being that guy, but this article seems to suggest that the gaming community fragments themselves into platforms like "portable", "mobile", or what have you, which really isn't the case. There are games on the smartphone/tablet front that are really suited to the interface, and those are the ones that shine for me.

It's pretty clear to me that the big three are feeling the heat. The DUAL touchscreens of the Vita, the new tablet-like interface of the Wii U. I don't think there's any doubt that the touchscreen mobile market share is getting really sizeable, and others want in on the action.

P.S. the picture of "Cut the Rope" above the article credits "Kirby's Epic Yarn, Electronic Arts." Bizarro World!

tjoris9:
The biggest advantage the 3DS and Vita have over phone games is that my games aren't tied to the system the way that phone games are. If my 3DS breaks on me I can link my new one to my club Nintendo account and redownload all my games, and all my cartridges still work.

When I replace my phone (which will inevitably last at most 2-3 years) all the games I bought for my old phone are effectively gone. I may not even be able to repurchase the games.

Woah! Hold on there fella! What kind of phone are you using? I know it's not an Android phone as I've been using one of those since the Original Motorola Droid and have transferred my apps bought on that very first phone over to all four of the phones I've had since then and the three tablets I've gone through. Furthermore, unless I'm horribly mistaken Apple devices work in much the same way in that your app purchases are linked to an individual account and not the physical device.

I for one welcome our new mobile overlords.

I don't see how mobile devices with the same cheap flash games that used to be free on sites like Kongregate or Miniclip retailing anywhere from $2-$5 are lowering the barrier to entry for gaming.

Actually finding something worthwhile in the app store like PvZ or Angry Birds is an extremely rare event.

The hate comes from a lack of titles that fit into the hardcore gamers gaming vernacular. The problem with a lot of those games is they are just stripped down versions of bigger games, or they use only mechanics that were masted with the NES. A lot of hardcore gamers want more complexity to their games. And it's not like games with complexity don't exist on those platforms, there just aren't enough of them. As an example: Look at the Castlevania games from way back. I had and enjoyed Castlevania 1, then Castlevania 2 and 3 blew me away because they were so unique compared to the first one. They were a lot less linear and a lot more complex. For me and many others, the epitome of the Castlevanis was Symphony of the Night. Not linear, play how you wanted, get boat loads of items and equips, etc. I used to think it was RPG's I loved because of this, but you make an RPG without these things and I don't have fun (Final Fantasy 13 with it's very little customization, blech).

To add onto your analog analog, the waiting period between good mobile games is like the waiting period for good Wii games. They tend to be very few and very far between. The PC, 360, and PS3 all cater to the hardcore crowd by releasing several games that fit into the need for good and complex games, on a nearly monthly basis. Rovio gave the world Angry Birds, and it was fun for 5 minutes. Then they just gave us more Angry Birds. Back in the day, at least Nintendo made Mario Brothers 1, 2, and 3 very different games. The play mechanics from iteration to iteration were completely different. Sure it always included the jump on enemies and squish them mechanic, but the way that was presented changed or became enhanced by other parts of the game. Hell, in Mario 2, you couldn't even jump on things to squish them, you could stand on them, pick them up, and throw them.

That isn't to say that my Android phone or my friends iPhone can't be good gaming devices. They sure can. Racing games are pretty amazing on these devices (thought I would still take a analog stick over touch screen or tilting). Which brings me to my next point. They don't make those devices with control systems that can handle complex games well at all. Touch screen controls are shoddy at best, and at worst make a game completely unplayable.

The hate comes from the fact that there is no attempt to appeal (with rare exception) to the "hardcore" gamer. The games tend to be overly simple and cutesy. Or they are hack versions of bigger games, like the smart phone version of every single game that accompanies a larger film or game release. I also think that many developers treat it as a quick cheap money grab. If gamers don't respect the mobile phone platform games, developers must really hate it as most don't even try to turn out a worthwhile product.

I can honestly say I've never heard anyone look down on mobile gaming. Maybe it's because I'm late to the party, since these have been around for a couple years and all, but it always seems to be viewed as another way to play games. I, personally, despise gaming on the iPhone, not because it's new, or different, but because the product is mass produced in a sweatshop with nets made just to stop people from committing suicide! (And no, that isn't exaggeration. http://gizmodo.com/5887255/inside-foxconn-tv-crew-enters-apples-factories-for-the-first-time-ever) I think that's a damn good reason to resent a new product.

I hate touchscreens. Come back when your interface has tactile feedback.

Xanthious:

tjoris9:
The biggest advantage the 3DS and Vita have over phone games is that my games aren't tied to the system the way that phone games are. If my 3DS breaks on me I can link my new one to my club Nintendo account and redownload all my games, and all my cartridges still work.

When I replace my phone (which will inevitably last at most 2-3 years) all the games I bought for my old phone are effectively gone. I may not even be able to repurchase the games.

Woah! Hold on there fella! What kind of phone are you using? I know it's not an Android phone as I've been using one of those since the Original Motorola Droid and have transferred my apps bought on that very first phone over to all four of the phones I've had since then and the three tablets I've gone through. Furthermore, unless I'm horribly mistaken Apple devices work in much the same way in that your app purchases are linked to an individual account and not the physical device.

You're right, Xanthious. I just upgraded my iPhone and everything I bought before was tied to my apple id - so it's on my new phone. Even my saves and progress. No muss, no fuss.

Eh, I despise touchscreens. Could never get the blue force tracker to do what I was telling it, and I can't get a damn iphone or droid to do what I'm telling it. An unresponsive OS is a very bad start for a gaming platform.

Then again, I'm one of those sticks in the mud who won't play first-person games with thumbsticks either. I'll just stick to keyboard and mouse until we have holoprojectors, thanks. These half-measures we're getting strike me as pretty worthless.

Wait...

"Kirby's Epic Yarn (C) EA"

Either the author is trolling or someone has forgot to change the placeholder copyright notice on the article picture.

I personally have no problem with mobile gaming itself, just when people say that it'll replace traditional handheld consoles or possibly even console games. I'm not saying that it's not possible, I just don't want it to happen. I know there are good mobile games, just like there are good flash games and facebook games and what not but that doesn't mean that I want a future where that's all there is.

I don't think mobile gaming will eclipse other more dedicated means of video gaming in the foreseeable future. Mobile gaming is a great time killer, especially as the ability to pick up and play combines perfectly with arcade style games, but those lower effort, faster reward games are just a slice of the pie. It might become an anachronism in the future to be proud of your ability to manipulate a thumbstick or a mouse but I don't think people will stop wanting the deeper experiences that video games can afford them. I couldn't have played games that made me laugh, cry or experience terror while I was sitting on the bus - it just wouldn't have worked. We might not always have the consoles as we know them, but I'm confident that there will always be a way to sit down in the comfort of your own home and experience something incredible.

On the other side of the coin, Final Fantasy III is presently the number two most downloaded paid app on the Android Market despite it being significantly more expensive than most mobile apps.

https://play.google.com/store/apps/collection/topselling_paid_game

Yeah sure great whatever
So long as it doesn't get in the way of making superior games

I.Muir:
Yeah sure great whatever
So long as it doesn't get in the way of making superior games

This pretty much sums up my opinion. Some people blabber on about how mainstream gaming is taking the back seat, casuals are now infiltrating the market, blah blah blah, but as long as hardcore gaming stays (even if it becomes niche), and stays awesome, I'll be fine with it.

Besides, I've tried mobile gaming, but most mobile games can't keep me nearly as occupied as Pokemon for twenty minutes, let alone occupied for 100+ hours like I have been for every version of Pokemon I've ever played.

All hail the mighty Android overlords, long may they rain.
I actually really didn't like playing games on my phone. Angry birds got old fast, but then I got an emulator on my phone and I can now play pokemon gold on my phone
Once again, All hail our mighty merciful overlords

I.Muir:
Yeah sure great whatever
So long as it doesn't get in the way of making superior games

Well, there's the problem, isn't it? Even top-tier developers have realized that they can make more money with less risk by crapping out quick-and-dirty titles, first for the Wii and now for mobile devices. More time and energy diverted to shovelware means less for AAA titles.

Fortunately, there are development houses (Valve, Bethesda, etc.) who still develop AAA games for PC & consoles as a labor of love.

Mortuorum:

I.Muir:
Yeah sure great whatever
So long as it doesn't get in the way of making superior games

Well, there's the problem, isn't it? Even top-tier developers have realized that they can make more money with less risk by crapping out quick-and-dirty titles, first for the Wii and now for mobile devices. More time and energy diverted to shovelware means less for AAA titles.

Fortunately, there are development houses (Valve, Bethesda, etc.) who still develop AAA games for PC & consoles as a labor of love.

Lets hope the effect isn't huge and besides without a game they can justify selling for 40x the amount of a casual game they would not have enough to pay for their bloated advertising campaigns

Only 4chan cares about sharing video games with 'lesser gamers' and for the rest of us it means more head shots on our fps of choice and easy wins in general

Johnson McGee:

Actually finding something worthwhile in the app store like PvZ or Angry Birds is an extremely rare event.

Indeed. I have trouble finding good games most of the time. Otherwise, this would seem like a good proposal.

Baresark:
The problem with a lot of those games is they are just stripped down versions of bigger games, or they use only mechanics that were masted with the NES.

I think the bigger problem is that many of the popular ones are "games my mom likes."

Until they can make Android Phone's battery life a lot longer, I don't think it will overtake my other gaming habits.

nikki191:
what a lot of people havent realised yet is what mobile gaming has tapped into. the thing consoles used to be and that is somethign you could just pick up and play without having to worry about all the huge downloads, etc

looking in context of this weeks jimquisition consoles are becoming crappy pcs and mobile gaming is grabbing the perception of pick up and play that cosoles are loosing

but the type of games you play on yoru consoles and iphone are completly different

consles are stil the "standard" in terms of "core" games

Way ahead of you Joe. Infinity Blade, Real Racing, FIFA. There are a handful of franchises on the App Store that play great on an iDevice. And while the touch screen and accelerometer offer limited gameplay possibilities, some devs are showing that by exploring those possibilities (instead of trying in vain to turn a touch screen into a virtual controller) some really good things can happen on iOS.

 

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