Heavy Rain Dev: "Sequels Kill Creativity and Innovation"

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It really depends on WHY you're making a sequel, doesn't it? If you're making a sequel for the cash-in or to be a placeholder for another sequel down the line, then of course you'll end up with a Bioshock 2 or AC: Revelations, respectively (both I haven't played btw, but that's the gist of reviews I've read and what my friends have said).

However, surely a smart dev would realise a sequel is also a convinient way to take what you've learned from the original (what worked and what didn't, what the audience found intriguing, etc) and expand upon it to create a more refined and, ideally, superior experience. There are many sequels in gaming that attest to this.

Then again, a series should probably end once it has dwindled out of ideas and the story has already gone where it was intended to go. Too many series' out there begin to decay after the 2nd installment. I actually think the dangers of sequels in games are narrative related, because once the story and characters lose their intrigue there is less reason to care about the action. Tighter, more contained stories have a lot more impact and how it is paced is what makes the difference.

JenSeven:
Seems like David Cage hates Silent Hill 2, Super Mario 3, Skyrim, Portal 2, TF2, the Dynasty Warriors games and all those other great games.
This guy is full of faecal matter.

Seems like you're putting words into his mouth that he didn't actually say.

Understand the difference between fact and philosophy, he's presenting a philosophy that he wants to create new games every time and to not get trapped into doing sequels all the time because when you simply build upon what you've already done you don't learn as much as you would doing something entirely different. He's not saying that all sequels are shit and you listing some good games that are sequels isn't going to disprove his point of view, particularly when you omit dozens of games that DO support his point of view. The philosophy is not difficult to understand, nor is it difficult to appreciate.

Team Meat, the guys behind Super Meat Boy seem to be of a similar mind. People wanted a sequel, one of the people behind the game said they made it as good as they can, and now they're going to do something different.

Saying that sequels usually don't push anything forward and that they don't breed creativity? Fair enough, even if I do overall disagree with the the statement.

Saying that you're creating original content because you "want to give [people] something they want without [them] knowing they want it"? Stop being a narcissist, Mr. Cage.

Um, Mr. Cage? Have you forgotten the good games that came out of sequels?

Sequels are okay in my book; it's only when the sequel is a blatant cash grab will I ignore it. Publishers these days...

Why is everyone acting as if he said all sequels ever made are terrible things which should be hated by all? Reading comprehension, people.

He's simply saying that it's more important to focus on original ideas and creativity, rather than allowing yourself to become chained to the same property. And you know what? He's right. I remember getting into gaming in the PS1 era, and one of the most wonderful things about that console was just how many new, fresh, original games there were. Squaresoft alone were releasing enough original titles to fill a small library, and then you had the likes of Spyro, Crash Bandicoot, Tomb Raider, Silent Hill, et al. It really was a magical period, as each game you picked up, you never really knew what to expect. And that meant, more often than not, whatever expectations you did have were blown away upon playing the game.

Nothing will ever beat the feeling of picking up a game without knowing much about it, playing it, and being utterly overwhelmed by it. I've had that happen to me several times with games, and its an amazing sensation each and every time. And its a feeling sequels are by and large incompatible with, given that they build off an already known game. I love the fuck out of Halo 2, but I never once felt the same sense of wonder and mystery that the original CE gave me.

People are pointing out sequels that were legitimately awesome, but still missing the point somewhat. Yes, Silent Hill 2 was an outstanding game. You know what wasn't so outstanding? All the sequels that came along after.

There is a place for sequels if they manage to carve out something unique, and create their own identity. Sequels that manage that are fine. Super Mario Galaxy has its own identity away from Mario 64, which itself had a unique identity from Super Mario Bros. Metroid Prime had its own identity away from Super Metroid. GTA 3 managed to do stuff that the earlier GTA games could never have hoped of achieving. That's not the problem. The problem is that for every inspired, innovative sequel, there are dozens of insipid follow ups that fail to challenge expectations, or offer any sort of originality away from their predecessors. It's a culture that has become endemic in the industry, and it needs to change. And we need to be the ones instigating the change. When original games come out that meet with acclaim, gamers should support them. Genuine creativity is all too rare in the triple-A industry now, and it is incumbent on us to support those developers who manage to think outside the box, and provide original experiences for gamers.

So yeah... let's ease up on the David Cage bashing here folks. He may be an ass sometimes, but he's also a very astute man who often has some good insights to offer.

Really, I think the problem is more that sequels that are made for the wrong reasons tend to lack creativity.

But then, the same applies to "original" games that exist to be like some other game.

So basically, I think focusing on sequels is the wrong way to look at it, though I see where he's coming from.

Half-Life 2 - Good sequel, added story, mechanics, characters, and much more athmoshpere.

Gears of War 2 - Bad sequel, was just more of the same.

That's how I judge sequels. If they add to the overall whole of the first game's base, then it's good. If it's just more of the same with graphical changes then it's a bad sequel, in my opinion.

mad825:
Says the guy who sold his soul to Sony...

And what's wrong with So-0> 0>image...oh.

OT: He prolly thinks that because so many people make sequels wrong. A sequel is supposed to make you dislike the first game by improving on it so much.

I can see where he's coming from. For his part, he didn't say anything about sequels except that they stifle creativity and innovation. In that strict sense, he's quite correct. Reuising a game engine, characters, art assets and just adding new dialogue and small refinements isn't creative or innovative. It's copying almost wholesale.

But in the industry there should be a balance. I'm totally for new titles and innovation, in fact I wish we'd have significantly more of both. The ancient console hardware that is sadly the primary development platform for most AAA development now means that any games we get today are outdated and old even before they're released.

But I also do sometimes wish to revisit an interesting game world, see old faces and what's happened to them since my actions of the previous game and so on. But while I'm wishing for innovation I might as well wish that people would develop to take advantage of current PC hardware and then port to consoles....it's as likely to happen as monkey's are to write Shakespeare.

Conker's Bad Fur Day

The guy's never heard of this game. That's obvious. Ok, so what about Donkey Kong Country? Donkey Kong 64? Super Mario World? Super Mario Galaxy? Sonic & Knuckles? Sonic Adventure? Ratchet & Clank Future: Tools of Destruction? Team Fortress 2? inFAMOUS 2? Quake II? Rayman Origins? The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask!?

Just how can anyone rain such a heavy universal observation like this and ever expect to be taken seriously? This guy is in the videogame industry, right? 'Cause, he should know bare-bone basics, such as this.

Except for planned sequels and trilogies. Mass Effect 2 and 3 come to mind.

Unplanned sequels are questionable, however.

i find that a sequel is a better test of creativity by forcing people to think outside the box with the given tools presented from the first game, zelda and portal are great examples of this. i do wish for more new IP's to enjoy an explore but there other games i want to delve more into, like i want more dishonored.

I would definitely agree with this, on the caveat of "Sequels for the sake of sequels kills creativity and innovation". Sequels could very much be a good thing, but not when they're made just to continue the IP.

If a game ties up the plot threads and resolves everything (read: Dragon Age: Origins), then it doesn't need a sequel, but if the game was originally envisioned as "Part 1" or whatever, then having a sequel to it could be very good.

Says a guy who's never made a sequel, ever.

Although it may ring truer for especially long series, even those have their own exceptions.

Not all creativity is good and not all sequels are uncreative. if you got a good recipe for chocolate you make more of it, not try invent another desert. Sure you can experiment here and there, but the main desert will still remain chocolate. and if people love it, whats the problem? that we dont ahve some ultimate best game ever? is that even possible?

Besides, looking at Mr. Cage it does not seem that new IPs let him be creative anyway.

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