Kids Can't Handle Old-School RPGs Anymore

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So the game was bad?

14 here, and I love to play old RPG's. I've bought Fallout, Baldur's Gate, and Gothic (not sure if that counts as really old) from GOG.com, and I'm really enjoying them. I haven't played too much of Fallout though, as I still haven't finished the other two. Although, I haven't played such old RPGs like Ultima IV. I'm going to give it a try.

I am fearful if these kids are the developers of the future. Ultima 4 and 5 are some of the best (if not the best) rpgs ever made. So they never read the manual? Did they frustrated trying to find out what the Mantras are? This makes me sad.

i played it without reading the manual, a long long time ago... 1992 i think.
i didnt had any problems...

double post, sorry!

lol I guess not

I think this is all more of a function of games becoming more mainstream. You have to remember back in those days, games were a pretty niche hobby. you can't really play the game until you've mastered some basic computer configurations. (config.sys anyone?) As such, you can almost ASSUME that your player base is going to be of a certain personality type that is willin to spend time and dig through the game.

But mainstream consumers are not like that. Mainstream consumers, for the most part, want to be entertained first, and once they get hooked they might be inclined to start digging. That is, older generation of gamers, by virtue of selective bias, probably tend to enjoy the technical exploration aspect for the sake of it, while gamers now a days, by virtue of just of crossing larger demographics, will include people who are less inclined to do so.

Add to the fact that current generation of game design is all about making things maybe not easier per se, but more user friendly. After all, these are mass market consumption items. You can't expect every single person to pick this up to act like they're tech support personnel.

In fact, this could not have come at a better time.

JaredXE:
Am I the only person who ever reads the manual? I love reading the fluff that comes with videogames, and when it comes to CRPG's, you often NEED to read the manual.

Stupid children.

EDIT: Then again, it might be because I'm so damned old. 29 isn't exactly a spring chicken anymore.

Your not the only one, I used to read game books (Strat guides and manuals) at school on my free time (one teach thought i was reading a porno lol)

Le_Lisra:
I'm just 20 but still.. it pains me that this is so. My first complex game was Anno 1602 and Settlers 2.. I read the manuals, having learned to read not that long ago, and set out to try..

My first complex game was final fantasy 8(I don't count FF1 cause I just did the battles when I was younger) when it came out(when I was in 4th grade so age nine I guess), and I got along fine without any guide or game book(Used game had non of that). So I fail to see why a college kid can't read a book to understand a game.

Brotherofwill:

Nieroshai:
One thing I hate about how you used to need the manual was, for example, Metal Gear. There are parts where you either can't beat the game or have to spend an hour guessing a radio code because it's in the manual and the game gives no hints itself. Metal Gear Solid 3 Subsistence comes with the first 2 metal gear games, but no manual. For a while Kojima's site had a FAQ that helped you with this, but they took it down. I can't find a PDF of the manual on the internet, and I don't want to stoop to using a straight-up guide. I am screwed. All because I can't find out this stuff in-game.

Wait...are there multiple parts in MGS where you need the manual? I thought there was only one spot when you can look at the back of the box to tell you a simple phone code.

That's how I remember it atleast, played the original; way back when it came out though. Also I'm pretty sure you get hints. MGS always gives you hints when you call the right people.

He is referring to Metal Gear 2:Solid Snake, where you needed tap codes in the game book to know how to call someone. It's a pain to need a game book you can't get sadly >_>

I jsut played the oridginal Mafia and even though thast only from 2000 it has aged very badly, though is still fairly compelling.

I love hard old-school JRPG's especially the Ys series, and I'm getting round to picking up Recettear at some point.

Newer RPG's hold your hand. I want another Demons Soul's to show up Please. And give it PC Support.

But most of my friends complain when games are hard. and rage. lol.

Can I count against this? I'm 16 and I love playing more old fashioned RPG's.
Or at least if Earthbound counts. Man that game never ceases to be awesome.

its cause modern gamers arent prepared for a game of this style that they think they can just run in "all guns a-blazin'" and not get punished for it... you need to prepare yourselves when you play games like this

Seeing as a lot of newer games claiming the RPG title have long forgotten the whole "role play" part and focus on just resource management and cookie cutter quest chores, I'm not surprised that kids are failing to grasp a game truer to the point. A good role playing game is like an interactive novel, the story and literary character development are the driving force of the plot and often the world's changes. More modern titles pick up the mechanics that were used to speed along one of the more tedious and dull conflict resolution systems: combat. An enjoyable RPG has nothing to do with the heavy math and genocidal power grinding that's focused on in many a title these days. Back before there was any voiced characters there was text, so reading everything, from dialogue to the easter eggs of world lore, was mandatory.

It's also kind of laughable to compare World of Warcraft to any RPG, as the characters' actions have no in-game effect on the world around them. Millions of people have raided that dungeon, slaughtered those hundreds of species of creatures just because an NPC asked them to (with pay), and who knows how many have put down the epic threat of the Lich King and seen the world stay exactly the same as it was since the day they started playing. Who your character is in WoW is also completely irrelevant, there is no character development, you don't really gain any kind of reknown or uniqueness no matter what you do (excluding out-of-game pop culture icons).

Now, that's not to say that there have been many, many wonderful innovations to the genre and others. Letting the software track tasks, important information, auto-map, and even save the player time by pointing them in the right direction have been god-sends, especially in consideration of added game play length, three-dimensional worlds, and the diminished free time of game players turned adults. Notable downsides in the genre's 'progression': lack of non-vionent solutions to challenges and tasks, complete irrelevancy of npc dialogue (doesn't matter when you don't have to think of a solution or pay attention to details like directions or landmarks), and artificial lengthening of gameplay through grinds (level/power, money/resources, reputation, etc).

Yeah i doubt i'd be able to get into that either. As old school as i like it, and i love this type of old school, are the old dragon quests and final fantasys.

Yeah...and in a few years time anything that isn't shooter (FPS/ TPS) will be heavily frowned upon.

I wouldn't say we (and by we I mean those of us the article is talking about) "can't handle" them, I'd say we don't like them. There's a big difference. The notion that we can't handle them is stupid, because it's not like the game kicks all our asses and we have to go home and cry to our mommies, we just aren't interested in that style of gameplay. There's nothing wrong with that.

gamer_parent:
I think this is all more of a function of games becoming more mainstream. You have to remember back in those days, games were a pretty niche hobby. you can't really play the game until you've mastered some basic computer configurations. (config.sys anyone?) As such, you can almost ASSUME that your player base is going to be of a certain personality type that is willin to spend time and dig through the game.

But mainstream consumers are not like that. Mainstream consumers, for the most part, want to be entertained first, and once they get hooked they might be inclined to start digging. That is, older generation of gamers, by virtue of selective bias, probably tend to enjoy the technical exploration aspect for the sake of it, while gamers now a days, by virtue of just of crossing larger demographics, will include people who are less inclined to do so.

Add to the fact that current generation of game design is all about making things maybe not easier per se, but more user friendly. After all, these are mass market consumption items. You can't expect every single person to pick this up to act like they're tech support personnel.

In fact, this could not have come at a better time.

This post contains a great deal of truth. It is not necessarily that modern gamers are "pussies" as some people have said; it is a matter of taste.

what the hells this guy talking about i love ultima 4
im 16 so i gess that make me a kid

I always read the manual.

It's important when playing a new game, especially ye olde games from this sort of era where sometimes the manual would be used as the game's copy protection method.

Think King's Quest 6's Wall puzzle and you'll get a good idea of what I mean.

I'm in the generation that use to play games like this, but even I can't get into Ultima IV lol.

I'm half and half. I've played the old ones and loved them, but I'll take a good ingame tutorial if I can over reading a manual. That is assuming the game hasn't been simplified down so it can be learned in a 5 min tutorial.

Modern things like a quest arrow do make me kringe though. Like wtf, the makers create a massive map to explore and everyone is following a little arrow. Getting lost and accidently discovering things or getting sidetracked was half the point of large worlds.

The second one is NPC scaling. As a level one fighter, bumping into a lord of hell demon or something should mean I get my ass handed to me. Not as games do nowdays *cough* oblivion *cough* and the badass boss is armed with a blunt dagger and couldn't lift a paperweight.

Actually working for things make those things sweeter. Doesn't mean a 20 hour grind has to be built in, there's no reason why getting to the final boss level can't be filled with adventures and quests, Balders Gate series was great at this.

I'd like to see how his students handle Balders Gate.

Honestly, in this day in age reading a manual is a joke. A lot of the time it's just copyright info, ads and pictures etc.

I don't fault the kids for not reading the documentation, because they simply weren't around back in the day when the bloody lump of paper had a point. Since the 90s we deliver all our information in-game, because that just makes sense. When the designer fails to do it properly our first response is to go to the internet, because anything that could possibly be in the manual is going to be there, and more. Dusting off the manual, assuming you didn't buy your game digitally, is something you only do when... y'know, I don't even know anymore. I'm not sure I've properly read a manual since Starcraft 1.

Let's not fault the younger generation for not knowing something that was necessary to know a quarter of a century ago. And we definitely shouldn't fault them for the state of gaming today, because it's not their generation who are making the games of today.

This is just plain SAD... I blame the parents!

I'm so glad that my brother ,his friends, my friends and myself teach the youth of today about the cool games of the past.

It's very simple... If the little ones want to play a game; start them off on a classic from the past.

They have less controls and are more satisfying for a younger gamer.
Especially if it's a point n click adventure.

I don't know what surprises me more; the fact there's a college course on video games or the fact kids today are too stupid to read a manual. Okay, manuals today aren't as vital as they used to be and kids growing up on more recent games are probably used to having tutorials and such. But the fact that not ONE of these COLLEGE AGE STUDENTS even considered opening it is just sad. You'd think it would have occurred to them, when everything else failed, to at least glance at it.

Back in my day, games like Mega Man 2 kicked you in the damn face. AND WE LIKED IT!

Holy Necro. I wonder lately, do People on purpose kinda go through the whole Section of forums and dig up the really old Threads to comment in? Especially News which is really out of date by now?

Im all for using the search function instead of opening new threads when something like that exists but..this topic, or "news" is about one and a half years old.

Im just really curious as to why this happens at this point.

I love rpgs, especially jrpgs. I'd give it a try if I had the chance but some games are just too old for me to stand. I like most of the older FF games I've tried but after awhile I get bored. I'd rather play a more modern rpg.

A-D.:
Holy Necro. I wonder lately, do People on purpose kinda go through the whole Section of forums and dig up the really old Threads to comment in? Especially News which is really out of date by now?

Im all for using the search function instead of opening new threads when something like that exists but..this topic, or "news" is about one and a half years old.

Im just really curious as to why this happens at this point.

there seems to be a thing with old news articles sometimes popping up on the escapist and people just comment not realising the age of the thread.

but still i noticed i dont generally read manuals these days but it was a must back in the day. but its pretty scary these kids didnt even bother to think there might be a manual. i suppose in one way games are much more accessable these days which i guess is balanced by the complexity being lessened.

This kind of happened to me last year when I tried to play Baulder's Gate.

I kept saying: What the fuck am I looking at?
I had to grab my old D&D 2nd edition book and spend hours refreshing myself.

If you can pick up and play a game I dont really like it.
I should not have to spend HOURS reading rules just to play a video game.

If I want to do that I will go play a D20 game.

I often play old games. Had a similar feeling of "What the hell?" when i played fallout for the first time, but in the end i finished it by reading up a bit on it.
The thing is, majority of gamers are not interested in that any more, they just want to launch the game and enjoy it, they dont want to read long storylines. Infact i do prefer games that have voice files for their stories instead of reading them (like morrowind) but i still do read all of it because i jut like the stories. but in a age where books are "waste of time" for majority reading a manual for a game is really not going to work.
for the record, im 22, i got no idea where im "todays generation" or the "old gamers".

there seems to be a thing with old news articles sometimes popping up on the escapist and people just comment not realising the age of the thread.

whooops, guilty as charged. I found this article on "recommended for you" list and didnt notice the date. hope i didnt necro too much.

the threads now open and its a good article so go for it. i guess alot of it also counts for those who like niche games as well. i could imagine someone picking up a heavy duty flight sim and getting absolutely no where. heck the dcs games will give you a hearnia just picking up the manual 650+ pages

This actually made me go and find a copy of Ultima IV and to be honest it's pretty entertaining. I guess I wanted to prove I had what it takes to "get" the game and apparently I do. Yay, me.

Honestly, my thoughts on this are based on the design concepts of the original Ultima, so there's a bit of serendipity there.

There should not be a tutorial in any game for the same reason that you got to shoot things in outer space in the first Ultima: If there's room on the damn disk, you should put more game there. This is proper design, and anything else is unacceptable. I've always felt this way, hearing that the Ultima games I grew up loving started that way codified it a fair bit.

Part of me refuses to believe that out of an entire college class of people going to a class named "History of Gaming" not *one* person actually had any knowledge of older gaming. It blows my mind... though it really does give me a bit of pride to say that I'm not like them, and I still have my hand-drawn grid-paper maps of Ultima 3 and Wizardry to prove it.

And I'm only 22, woo!

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