Jimquisition: Dumbing Down for the Filthy Casuals

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grumbel:

JustanotherGamer:
If you don't like it don't buy it simple.....

Has it ever crossed your mind that people might like parts of a game and hate others?

What like achievements? why destroy this and not just make a different ip? why don't those people just move on to a game they can totally enjoy? why do you want to play a game you don't like? Do you feel left out?
Yep no access barriers content thats what all games should be no more monster hunter it's too elitist no souls there evil for making people buy them and not being able to enjoy it lol you guys just can't wrap your heads around it probably why you didn't get too far.

infinity_turtles:
Why the hell do you need to change it to something that I can't enjoy to include other people who have damn near every other game in existence?

Because it doesn't sell enough. It's that simple. You can want your ultra hard niche title all day long, but if the publisher thinks he could sell a few more units by making it a little bit more accessible, he will.

wow well done have a cookie... is "selling out" a good thing in your book then?

JustanotherGamer:
why don't those people just move on to a game they can totally enjoy?

They have with Demon's Souls and Dark Souls. That's why the publisher now wants the game to be easier. As already said a few times: Not buying the game is not a solution, that's the very thing causing the problems you complain about.

i can tell you did gcse business studies....... of corse a company is always going to chase profits over everything else..... I just think it's a shame a small profit and a great work of art can't have a place any longer it has to be over hyped dumbed down shit to appeal to the sheeples.

grumbel:

infinity_turtles:
Why the hell do you need to change it to something that I can't enjoy to include other people who have damn near every other game in existence?

Because it doesn't sell enough. It's that simple. You can want your ultra hard niche title all day long, but if the publisher thinks he could sell a few more units by making it a little bit more accessible, he will.

Yes, the publisher is changing things in the hope to sell more copies, but I think that's a rather poor standard of "enough". That's the publisher being a greedy asshole, especially since the Souls series has been doing remarkably and all of Namco Bandai's other new IPs have been failing.

grumbel:

JustanotherGamer:
why don't those people just move on to a game they can totally enjoy?

They have with Demon's Souls and Dark Souls. That's why the publisher now wants the game to be easier. As already said a few times: Not buying the game is not a solution, that's the very thing causing the problems you complain about.

No, publisher's complete lack of ability to think long term is the problem. A publisher should be trying to cultivate and keep a strong and loyal fanbase that will consistently and reliably give them sales, and thus a much greater profit over the long term like hardcores than trying to cater to as unstable and unreliable short term gains as the casual market.

immortalfrieza:

FriedRicer:

evilneko:

I really think you should watch this episode again.

I saw it,but what have I missed?

You didn't miss anything, Jim himself just missed the entire problem so he could make yet another video about how gamers are just whining about a nothing issue, despite the fact that it ISN'T a nothing issue, but that doesn't matter to him since he doesn't care if the people complaining about the problem have a valid point, but about making a video with as much views as possible. I actually agree with Jim a lot of the time, but I never agree with him when he doesn't even try to understand the problem and calls everyone that complains about it just a bunch of whiny idiots, especially with nothing valid to back it up like he did with this one.

Thanks for clearing that up.It seems that Jim can't decide when a game should be protected by artistic merit or changed for profit like a product.I hope the Souls series stays away from a "proper" tutorial.It would ruin the games sense of experimentation/exploration and uniquely intended approach at created its varied difficulty.To give a player access to many mechanics at the beginning,and the more of them you mix/match-use the easier the experience.It is an approach that expresses ones own interest in NOT DYING.The thing they told you to prepare to do.It feels entirely canon to see the bloodstains of other peoples failures and hear the ringing of the bells-success.Or to have a more observant player give you a message of a hidden path.A change in this-and Souls becomes less of itself.

FriedRicer:

Thanks for clearing that up.It seems that Jim can't decide when a game should be protected by artistic merit or changed for profit like a product.I hope the Souls series stays away from a "proper" tutorial.It would ruin the games sense of experimentation/exploration and uniquely intended approach at created its varied difficulty.To give a player access to many mechanics at the beginning,and the more of them you mix/match-use the easier the experience.It is an approach that expresses ones own interest in NOT DYING.The thing they told you to prepare to do.It feels entirely canon to see the bloodstains of other peoples failures and hear the ringing of the bells-success.Or to have a more observant player give you a message of a hidden path.A change in this-and Souls becomes less of itself.

Exactly, but good luck getting any of the pro-easy moders here to admit it, I've been trying for quite some time now. Jim seems to just be trying to make videos that royally piss a lot of people off so he can get views, he's basically the troll of the escapist video contributors, and much of the time he's correct despite that, but definitely not this time. He couldn't be any more wrong if he tried in fact.

grumbel:

I can't remember having 1000 post long threads about easy-mode back when Demon's Souls was released or back when Dark Souls was released. People who didn't like that simply didn't buy it. Has worked out great for you, hasn't it? Now the developers are thinking about attracting a wider audience because they see potential for more sales.

Because Demon's Souls was a niche hit that was hardly advertised, and became a success largely due to word of mouth and hype generated within the niche group that enjoyed it. Due to that success, more people were anticipating Dark Souls and it was more heavily advertised. When more people became aware of the games existence there were more people to complain about the game not being accessible to them, many without even giving it a go.
The problem is that a simple "easy mode" wouldn't fix the issues that people are complaining about with Dark Souls difficulty, so allocating resources into rebalancing the entire game into being more accessible would ruin the core philosophy that made Demons and Dark Souls into the successes that they have become.
Simply changing monster health and damage would not create an experience that the people asking for an Easy mode would just suddenly enjoy. Also, labeling such a mode as an "easy" mode would be a dishonest trick to get more people interested in buying, which in turn could lead to bad publicity.

grumbel:

Gamers are not very good at doing boycotts:

http://cache.gawkerassets.com/assets/images/kotaku/2009/11/1258035395841.jpg

Would you seriously not buy a Dark Souls with an easy-mode when everything else stays exactly the same? Doubt it. Jim also had a while back a video on why boycotts are not such a good idea, also worth a watch.

Boycotting isn't the only issue. If the next game is designed with a different goal in mind, less hype and activity within the community will be generated, and this in turn will lead to less people being interested in picking up the game.
And, no, if the next entry is lacking fundamental parts of the experience of previous games, there would be nothing attracting me to spend time and money in that world.
I didn't buy Condemned 2 because they tried to make it into a supernatural combo driven action brawler, I didn't buy Dawn of War 2 because they removed base building and many defensive aspects from DoW1 and I didn't buy Red Faction: Armaggeddon because it removed the open world aspect and destruction parts that made Guerilla a sleeper hit. Remove core mechanics and make the experience less enjoyable and naturally I won't be interested.

Also, there's a difference. CoD is mostly about the competetive aspect, responsive gameplay and military setting, and you can have all of that without dedicated servers.

grumbel:

So why exactly can't all that learning happen in an easy-mode before people move on to normal-mode? Why is it for you ok to have an training mode before going to NewGame+, but not ok for others to have a slightly less difficult training mode?

Because the normal mode is designed to force you into being good enough at the game to finish it. If you want a training mode, you can always use a strategy guide or ask for advice on forums if you can't figure things out in the game. There's however no reason for the developer to encourage you to do so if the core experience is to remain intact.

grumbel:

I am referring to the fact that the game does not have very good checkpoints and forces you to replay large sections over and over again.

The game has excellent checkpoints. The kind you have to search for and find yourself, and the kind where you trade some progress for having a safe haven. And the kind where you unlock shortcuts to save progress in an area. If there was no need for you to replay large sections, there would be nothing threatening and no sense of loss when dying, no sense of relief and safety when finding a bonfire and a much lessened sense of accomplishment when getting through a difficult area.
This is what game design is all about, you want to invoke an experience for the player by making decisions around how you interact with the game.

grumbel:

Publishers see that a little different.

Then, let's hope the publishers let the people who made the game a success will get to do their jobs at least one more time before they start watering down the franchise.

chikusho:
Simply changing monster health and damage would not create an experience that the people asking for an Easy mode would just suddenly enjoy.

It wouldn't make the game accessible for FarmVille players, but it would open up the game to most regular gamers.

And, no, if the next entry is lacking fundamental parts of the experience of previous games, there would be nothing attracting me to spend time and money in that world.

Nobody is talking about removing parts, just adding some.

If you want a training mode, you can always use a strategy guide or ask for advice on forums if you can't figure things out in the game.

I don't understand that logic. How is easy-mode the root of all evil, but a walkthrough is totally ok, even so it spoils the very essence of the game, the "figuring stuff out" part, which an easy-mode would not?

The game has excellent checkpoints.

Can't comment on Dark Souls, but Demon's Souls definitely did not.

If there was no need for you to replay large sections, there would be nothing threatening and no sense of loss when dying

That's a pointless way to stretch the game for a lot of people. If you like it, fine, but I don't see a reason to force it on everybody. For me having to replay section is the very thing that destroys immersion, it pulls me out of the moment and highlights how mechanical and repetitive a game is.

grumbel:

It wouldn't make the game accessible for FarmVille players, but it would open up the game to most regular gamers.

No, simply changing enemy health and damage wouldn't open the game up to most regular gamers. It would simply lessen one aspect to be cautious about in a game where caution is everything, possibly making you underestimate the mechanics you need to be wary of in order to make progress. If you want dark souls to be easier, changing enemy health stats will do nothing for you and the game will still be inaccessible. Why waste development resources adding a pointless mode that doesn't improve the game for anyone?

grumbel:

Nobody is talking about removing parts, just adding some.

Removing difficulty that is inherent to the design and splitting up large parts of the online aspect is a problem.

grumbel:

I don't understand that logic. How is easy-mode the root of all evil, but a walkthrough is totally ok, even so it spoils the very essence of the game, the "figuring stuff out" part, which an easy-mode would not?

I've never said that developers should include walkthroughs into the game. Those will pop up online as they do for every game though. If you find Dark Souls to be so impenetrable, you can make the extra effort and learn the things you need from outside sources.
Also, there's the part where you share discoveries and experiences with friends and other players. The more obscure an item and rulesets hidden within the game, the more fun it is to test and figure things out within a community of your choice. This is another thing that extends the life of the game that clear explanations and accessible design would completely eliminate.

grumbel:

That's a pointless way to stretch the game for a lot of people. If you like it, fine, but I don't see a reason to force it on everybody. For me having to replay section is the very thing that destroys immersion, it pulls me out of the moment and highlights how mechanical and repetitive a game is.

It's not pointless in the slightest. If all you want to do is see the environments and mess with some of the enemies and equipment, I'm pretty sure you can find a modding community that would be able to provide that.
Either way you look at it, demanding that developers adding in a "Skip the experience we have worked for years to create"-mode is not only a waste of effort and resources, but also kind of insulting.
Don't appreciate or agree with what they've created? That's fine, maybe it's just not for you.

Yes, From Software and Namco Bandai are businesses. Businesses pursue profit and want to maximize profits. But they were already doing that.

From Software tapped into a market and a niche that no one really expected and it was a huge success, especially considering Dark Souls and Demon's Souls are very low budget compared to most other big name games out there.

A lot of shooters have come out trying to be the next Call of Duty. A lot of them have just outright failed and the ones that haven't like Battlefield were already established big name games. Copying what is more popular doesn't guarantee increased profits especially when something else already dominates that market.

The amount of resources and marketing to create something as popular as Skyrim is overwhelming. The simple fact is that like Call of Duty for the online FPS genre, they've mostly established a stranglehold on that genre. Demon's Souls and Dark Souls managed to do very well regardless because while they're both "Action RPG' games, they cater to very very different tastes and extremely different markets.

Look at the Metroid series. It's a popular series, yes but they aren't mega successes like the Super Mario series and Legend of Zelda. Metroid still managed to tap into their own unique market and is still a successful series. Metroid Prime 3 was a lot more "accessible" than Metroid Prime 1. It's more linear. All of the major zones are separated from each other, they aren't interconnected like they used to be. There was a greater focus on combat and action over exploration. And yet despite this Metroid Prime 1 outsold Metroid Prime 3 by nearly twice as much.

Dark Souls and Demon's Souls tapped into a new miche market, and one shown to be very profitable. Just from a business point of view, it's risky and foolish to throw that away for the sake of being more mainstream.

I remember that one idiot said that in Starcraft 2, custom games were for people who can't handle the actual Starcraft 2. I think that the actual rts's have a lot of bs work. I liked playing Warcraft 3 until I discovered that you have to micromanage everything. Micromanaging has almost nothing to do with outsmarting your opponent and creating crafty and innovative strategies. Micromanaging prevented me from enjoying the game. It makes me cringe when someone says that micromanaging is part of the genre.

"Prepare to die... unless you don't want to, in which case... Prepare for Easy mode" <--- Doesn't sound silly in the slightest does it. It's a tough road to walk though, while you don't want your favorite games to get dumbbed down you also want to get a sequel. That, i'm guessing is jim's stance on the issue. More people playing equals more money for your favorite franchises equals more of your favorite franchises. Sounds like good math, but one only needs to turn an eye to resident evil to see it's not that simple.

If dark souls "easy mode" generates more fans of the series, we're more likely to see a new dark souls. Now you have a new set of fans with their own special needs. This means Nether souls, is now going to have to be designed with easy mode in mind from the start to appeal to it's new fan base. Looking at megaman 9 and 10, the easy mode added to 10 because 9 was too hard kinda diminished the overall experience for some gamers.

This industry is however, a Business with an A number 1 goal of making money. Your not going to be able to change that fact, so this issue is kinda irreverent. Whatever they need to do to get more money, it shall be done. So anyone complaining about the retarding of our games needs to can it. Eat your wallpaper paste or get out of the way for someone who will.

It's sad that Oblivion and Skyrim actually were dumbed down enough for the casuals to ruin the experience of many older, more experienced players. I want to kill the Jarl of Whiterun; but I don't want to join the Stormcloaks in order to do it.

Shame, really; Bethesda sold out.

I know this particular post was made months ago now, but I just noticed it with this last bump:

JustanotherGamer:
wow well done have a cookie... is "selling out" a good thing in your book then?

"Selling out" is neutral - it's the details that make it good or bad. Getting paid/making more money is not a bad thing in and of itself. It always baffles me that people think "sellout" is such an insult - sure, more independent work has more freedom, but that also means a lower budget which is its own limitation.

In case anyone hasn't see this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JweTAhyR4o0 It's about TES dumbing down. Worth a watch. Thanks

This is ridiculous. People have said this already, but why are you acting like you are somehow losing your punishingly hard game? People have been able to adjust the difficulty in their games for years, sometimes even on the dot if they don't feel like dealing with a particularly punishing part of the game. I know that before I got broadband, I would simply have to put down a game and leave it for weeks or months on end if I couldn't manage a particular area, or figure out a particular puzzle. Having an adjustable difficulty levels that don't reflect their labels (e.g. easy shouldn't be too hard and hard shouldn't be too easy) can only help to make a game better.
The most notable example I can think of is Kid Icarus: Uprising, which had 91 different difficulty levels, ranging from "We gave the bad guys a complimentary lobotomy" and "Fuck you and your children". The thing about it is that it not only allows players of any skill level to play it, it involved a risk/reward system where you had to pay in-game cash to get the harder levels, which in turn would grant better rewards if you succeeded. This challenged to player to find the fine line between cake-walking the game for little return, and losing their 'bet' by getting stomped.
I think a 'slider' system like this should be implemented in any game where it would fit.

The game Wasteland decided not to worry about difficulty levels. The idea was to keep the game specific for the entitled gamers. The reason they decided to approach the game like this is the niche specialty group that plays this type of game will most likely be the group that continues to purchase it in the future. The size of these groups is now big enough to create a profitable market without having to worry about what the casual gamer thinks.

I also believe the easing of a games difficulty has no longer become subtle. What used to be a change through only the games options have now become part of the game, this kind of ruins it. Loyal fans of the game notice this while non fans wouldn't and it is a burn to those who are the most loyal to the franchise; they become justly pissed off because of that.

I am a believer that all games should be made assessable to everyone, but if there is a specific market focus that a game is trying to go for I think a little bit of gamer entitlement is justified.

I know this video is old and whatnot, but I felt that there has been something important that has gone unmentioned when it comes to Dark Souls and difficulty. Dark Souls is more than just player versus enemy - the player versus player multiplayer is also integrated into the core design of this franchise (why no pause? Think about it). Sure, FromSoft could adjust the pve aspect of the game to suit more casual gamers, but the moment they turn from hollow to human, all bets are off on an easy mode when playing online. Players in new game+ have to deal with a harder difficulty, but it is a curve which slides upward for all players if they beat the game. The promise of an easy mode for casual gamers in this case would be an empty one.

Rooster Cogburn:
The notion that hardcore gamers are pushing around the content-starved casuals is an exact inversion of what is actually happening to this medium in fact. I don't even know where to go for a AAA title that engages me on my level anymore outside the Souls series. But they want that, too. They want everything. The very idea of there being a game out there built with me in mind is offensive to them. Everything has to be for them, nothing for me. Not even a toe-hold. Not even one game. I'm being pushed out of gaming entirely by these people. I don't get what I did to deserve this.

And they have the sheer bulging gonads to say I'm the one bossing them around.

100% this. Can't we have this one fucking game?? Dark souls 2 is out now and it's gray uninspired mess, every boss does the exact same thing; move with the celerity of a dying turtle then stand still while you kill them. Thanks for taking away the one series that gave me some happiness you off brand posers. Have fun trying to fill that void in you having everything handed to you on a silver platter you Crybabys.

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