The Stagnant State
"Sports gamers are trapped inside the industry's version of The Matrix. The fact we see 'new' games every year almost guarantees only so much can be done, not only to add new features but also to fix problems from the previous edition. Each year, the hole gets deeper, and it gets harder for people not to see the spoon, as it were. As problems go unfixed, and new features are added, many of them also badly in need of fixes, it gets more and more difficult to justify spending upwards of $60 every year to buy the latest version."
Bill Abner spills some blood about the current, stagnant state of sports games.
Great article that pretty much sums up why I don't play many sports games anymore.
I never liked sports video games, they always made me feel lazy. It was like "I could be actually doing this right now but instead Im sitting on my couch pretending im doing it" I want my games to have SOMETHING real life doesnt have, otherwise theres no point playing them at all.
I remember a joke on this in a gaming comic.
"Starting work on Madden 2008?"
"Yup! Thought I'd get going early."
Madden 200_ *backspace*
"Wooh! Well, I'm beat!"
"Yeah, see you next year."
In a way, though, this is sort of why I'm surprised that people still enjoy sports in general (not just the video games) It's like CS: You've been playing the same game for years, how is it still fun? When will the next Non-Electronic Entertainment Expo drum up something great, like DiscBall?
PC gaming in general has stagnated. Most games that come out now are much prettier, shallower, bug infested games that we all played years ago. Nice rant, I agree completely.
Sports games for the PC also include the wonderful at times buggy as hell recently series of "Cycling Manager". Wonderful attempt at simulation for a less known yet exciting sport. Sadly, rather unplayable at the moment...
A good article and a take I hadn't thought of before.
The only flaw I could see is your Starcraft example. I can easily envision Blizzard devotees buying Starcraft '08 if it contained an extra race and some extra maps and thinking they got good value for $60. It may not work forever, but I think Blizzard could easily follow that path and rake in some extra money - the cost would be the slow erosion of what people think of the Blizzard brand, of course (as has happened with Madden) but it wouldn't stop people from buying their games en masse.
And, sadly, I think the gaming media would happily fall in line behind that as they currently do with sports games.
"oooh... games were soooo better back in the day when we had 3 pixels per mile and had to hand crank the PC to run it..." What an elitist load of nostalgic bullshit!
I especially have to have a go at you about the sports simulation games - what about the hundreds of web-based sports sims and fantasy leagues??
They're just as good and twice as popular than ANYTHING "back in the day"...
This reminds me of why im still playing madden 05