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Richard Garriott “I think most game designers really just suck”

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  • DihoruDihoru ConstantaPosts: 2,731Member

    Sorry guys but if you didn't know Richard Garriott was a bit of an eccentric loose cannon then... well now you know and as far as what he said being controversial.... it isn't really, few game designers these days are doing their job for the love of the medium itself, it isn't so much talent as desire to build something you can, for better or utter shit, call your own work. As far as his right to say these things... well... he's one of the founding fathers of gaming, he created a genre which today is still going strong and is being mixed into many other genres or birthing completely new offshoots of itself (MOBAs for example are at their basic level RPG games) ergo if anyone has the right to call anyone else a "sucky game designer" it's this guy or one of the few other founding fathers but Gariott is the only one... lets say ballsy enough to actually say it but I doubt it isn't a sentiment shared by most of the old guard game designers like Roberts, Alex Garden, Erik Yeo, Sid Meier, etc. These people built games because they loved games, some of em still do what they love and do it not for the money but for the medium and that, not talent, many may contradict me but talent is wasted on those who do not use it or even misuse it and even without talent someone can still create through trial and error good games, that makes a great game designer.

     

    TL;DR version: Richard Gariott's right, most game designer suuuuck because most don't find ways to innovate even when forced to work in a set mould (example: in Deadspace 3 there were many times when I found myself wondering about something from within the game and had to alt tab to pull up a wiki and find out about it, it wouldn't have cost or impacted much to have a built in encyclopedia to the game or a lorehandbook or something just for people like me and it would've helped with immersion from my point of view or another example would be having alternate control schemes in most games, especially PC ports, which actually work). And by innovation I don't mean "wow" things, I mean things which improve your game experience in one way or another and may even just be flavour text with a personal touch like say a weird joke or something which just seems odd and makes you wonder.

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  • strangiato2112strangiato2112 Richmond, VAPosts: 1,538Member Common
    Originally posted by Dampyre
    Originally posted by strangiato2112

     

     The reason he is going to kickstarter is because innovation in the MMO market is dead projects tommorow's themepark games are gonna be influenced by indie projects that are succesful.

    Because GW2 (no trinity, not heavily gearbased), TSW (modern setting, puzzle/mystery solving gameplay, skill wheel), and TERA (action oriented combat) are all standard games?  people that think everything is still WoW clones are blind to whats going on around them.  okay, TERA maybe be 'poor quality WoW with action combat", but the other two games are far, far from WoW clonish.  And of course games like PS2, Defiance and EoN (if it releases0 that are crossgenre games.

     

    There is plenty of innovation out there.

     

     

    The real question is why is a millionaire who can spend 30 million to go to space asking for crowd funding?

    yep GW2 is innovative and its why i play it, as far as the TSW goes pretty standard themepark, ya its a different setting that has not been done before but to me that is minor and has very little to do with actuall gameplay, how many games out there have we seen that are just WoW with a couple of tweaks...the majority of games in the industry you can't define a industry by a couple of titles. If you look at the console market there is way more innovation then the MMO industry , mostly because the games cost less , the creative people are not the problem its the financial side that has made so many clones out there.

      hence why kickstarter is becoming so popular, becauase there are tons of gamers like myself who are sick of the same old themepark games with one or two minor tweaks. Yes we are starting to see 'some' inovation in the MMO industry but its very little and only because the last couple of big budget wow copies fell flat on their face,  but for years it was the only thing being made and its still the majority.  Besides when a game starts with a subscription model and quickly moves to F2P its because the game flopped.

    TSW isnt 'WoW with tweaks' or 'standard themepark'.  Its class/skill structure is very different and the nature of the quests is quite different too.  If TSW didnt have terrible combat it would be much more highly regarded.  Is it a themepark?  Sure.  is it a copy/paste of WoW with feature tweaks like, LOTRO(somewhat), SWTOR and Rift?  Not at all.  The best indicator of that is can you honestly answer yes to this question?  Did The Secret World play it safe and make a familiar game?.  thats what SWTOR and Rift certainly did.

     

    And I would argue that kickstarters popularity is to prey on people who think like you.  In the case of a game like The Repopulation which is mostly funded normally, kickstarter is fine.  When you have successes like Mark Jacobs and people that build multimillion dollar homes of ridiculousness like Garriot asking for kickstarter donations things have taken a turn towards the dark side.

  • aRtFuLThinGaRtFuLThinG MelbournePosts: 1,133Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by birdycephon
    I dunno, it seems like the guy is living in "the good ol' days". His new game concept looks so 90's. I hope things work out for him, but I doubt I will find his game appealing.

    Before we judge him too harshly, I I think we need to take in to the perspective which point of view he is coming from.

     

    The 90's was the golden age of RPGs. Almost all the most famous computer games RPG franchise was started in that era (Ultima, the golden boxes AD&D, Might & Magic, Wizardry, Fallout, etc the list is too long to go on). Back then because technology was limited, gameplay has to be good - and they WERE indeed really good.

     

    If you compare Baldur's Gate or Ultima 7 for example the level of details and the freedom to manipulate things in the world in those RPG still beats the hell out of modern day RPGs like Mass Effect and Dragon Age.

     

    It wasn't because developers was smarter - it was just a result of more effort spent on gameplay instead of fluffs.

  • MumboJumboMumboJumbo LondonPosts: 3,221Member
    If he says this after SotA releases to 10/10 reviews, then I might lend him an ear.
  • DihoruDihoru ConstantaPosts: 2,731Member
    Originally posted by MumboJumbo
    If he says this after SotA releases to 10/10 reviews, then I might lend him an ear.

    He'll have to do another kickstarter to buy all those reviews o.O (in this day and age 10/10 from major reviewers is never legit).

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  • ragz45ragz45 rochester hills, MIPosts: 686Member Uncommon
    I've hated Garriott for a long while, always thought he was way too full of himself. Arrogance isn't a great quality in anyone, and he's arrogant enough for 3 people.
  • observerobserver Houston, TXPosts: 3,004Member Uncommon
    It's easy to say that game designers suck, but if you don't break down your arguments, piece by piece, as to why games suck, then you can't be taken seriously. Games are not built with a magic wand. There are many components and aspects to them.

    The most important one, is the purpose: entertainment, social, self-gratification, combination of them, etc.

    Next is the target audience. Genre-specific players, Casuals, Veterans, Kids, Teens, Adults, College Kids, etc. It's always a bad idea to say "for everyone", since you will never please, or interest, "everyone" with your game.

    With these 2 concepts, everything else is built around them, and this just isn't for games, but for all kinds of marketing and products. This is why most games "suck".
  • MaephistoMaephisto somewhere, DCPosts: 632Member

    So long as failure is handled correctly, it is a building block for greater success and is a primary source of gaining experience in your chosen profession.

    I think we are not doing ourselves any favors by labelling developers as failures just because they have failed games under thier belt.  If anything, it should be viewed as a rite of passage.

    If the dev team for SWTOR could go back and redo thier game with the knowledge they currently have, I would bet it would be a far greater game.

    No if someone continually screws up, that is a different story.

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  • maplestonemaplestone Ottawa, ONPosts: 3,099Member
    Every time I read an interview with him, I wish I had tried to get into the industry.  He sounds like someone I'd really enjoy arguing with.
  • DestaiDestai Detroit, MIPosts: 574Member
    The designers don't suck. Sure, not every game programmer is a developer of legendary quality but they're talented enough to put these games together. It's the business side that's the problem in this genre, not the people who work hard to put the games together.
  • NadiaNadia Canonsburg, PAPosts: 11,866Member Common

    i doubt he would have gone shooting off his mouth if his kickstarter didnt already reach its goal  :)

    http://massively.joystiq.com/2013/03/19/shroud-of-the-avatar-tops-1-million-in-funding-adds-stretch-go/

  • laokokolaokoko TaipeiPosts: 2,003Member
    Originally posted by aRtFuLThinG
    Originally posted by birdycephon
    I dunno, it seems like the guy is living in "the good ol' days". His new game concept looks so 90's. I hope things work out for him, but I doubt I will find his game appealing.

    Before we judge him too harshly, I I think we need to take in to the perspective which point of view he is coming from.

     

    The 90's was the golden age of RPGs. Almost all the most famous computer games RPG franchise was started in that era (Ultima, the golden boxes AD&D, Might & Magic, Wizardry, Fallout, etc the list is too long to go on). Back then because technology was limited, gameplay has to be good - and they WERE indeed really good.

     

    Maybe it's easier to creat great game play since the techology is so limited.

    The way I look is the guy really never make anything comtemporary.  I mean it's good the guy can creat those 2d or 3d sidescrolling whatever game.  But really when the only time he tried to creat a somewhat modern game he failed.

    And he can talk any kind of trash he want.  Not like he can get any kind of funding from his previous track record.  And ya I know NCsoft is being a crap in that situation too, but I'm not sure that I sympathy what happened to him.

  • strangiato2112strangiato2112 Richmond, VAPosts: 1,538Member Common
    Originally posted by Nadia

    i doubt he would have gone shooting off his mouth if his kickstarter didnt already reach its goal  :)http://massively.joystiq.com/2013/03/19/shroud-of-the-avatar-tops-1-million-in-funding-adds-stretch-go/

     

    suckers funding Britannia Manor MK III
  • DihoruDihoru ConstantaPosts: 2,731Member
    Originally posted by strangiato2112
    Originally posted by Nadia

    i doubt he would have gone shooting off his mouth if his kickstarter didnt already reach its goal  :)

    http://massively.joystiq.com/2013/03/19/shroud-of-the-avatar-tops-1-million-in-funding-adds-stretch-go/

     

    suckers funding Britannia Manor MK III

    Actually it's the foundation budget for Grande Britannia, a self-sustained space station/death star (sorry I just had to XD).

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  • IcewhiteIcewhite Elmhurst, ILPosts: 6,403Member
    Originally posted by strangiato2112
    suckers funding Britannia Manor MK III

    And every time we need another month of utility bills...

    Topic Grenade! W00t, free publicity!

    Looking like a megalomaniac? No worries, I'll have plenty of apologists. Crank the money press again.

    Self-pity imprisons us in the walls of our own self-absorption. The whole world shrinks down to the size of our problem, and the more we dwell on it, the smaller we are and the larger the problem seems to grow.

  • mari3kmari3k erger, AKPosts: 135Member
    Ooooooooooh my god ...

    Garriott is one of the worst games devs on the planet, with this statement he shows us also that he is the dumbest.
    Ultima was ok at its time, but not great. And the last thing I head from him was tabula rasa.... great work garriot , a masterpiece !

    And now this "poor" man ripps his stuoid fans of with kickstarter... come on lets help him to pay his next space flight.

    Step in the arena and break the wall down

  • Ramonski7Ramonski7 Aurora, ILPosts: 2,656Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by laokoko
    Originally posted by aRtFuLThinG
    Originally posted by birdycephon
    I dunno, it seems like the guy is living in "the good ol' days". His new game concept looks so 90's. I hope things work out for him, but I doubt I will find his game appealing.

    Before we judge him too harshly, I I think we need to take in to the perspective which point of view he is coming from.

     

    The 90's was the golden age of RPGs. Almost all the most famous computer games RPG franchise was started in that era (Ultima, the golden boxes AD&D, Might & Magic, Wizardry, Fallout, etc the list is too long to go on). Back then because technology was limited, gameplay has to be good - and they WERE indeed really good.

     

    Maybe it's easier to creat great game play since the techology is so limited.

    The way I look is the guy really never make anything comtemporary.  I mean it's good the guy can creat those 2d or 3d sidescrolling whatever game.  But really when the only time he tried to creat a somewhat modern game he failed.

    And he can talk any kind of trash he want.  Not like he can get any kind of funding from his previous track record.  And ya I know NCsoft is being a crap in that situation too, but I'm not sure that I sympathy what happened to him.

    Laokoko makes a great point that I want to emphasize.

    • Back in the 70's and 80's a single person could code a game. The tools used were simple and archaic.
    • Back in the 90's and 00's a small team could code a game. The tools used were limited and shared.
    • In the last few years it takes a large team to code a game. The tools are varied and expensive.

     

    Making a masterpiece with a box of 4 crayons by yourself is difficult but not impossible. (Lord British then)

    Making a masterpiece with a box of 4 million crayons along with 300 other people is much more difficult and nearly impossible (Dev teams of today)

    image
    "Small minds talk about people, average minds talk about events, great minds talk about ideas."

  • aRtFuLThinGaRtFuLThinG MelbournePosts: 1,133Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Ramonski7

    Originally posted by laokoko
    Originally posted by aRtFuLThinG
    Originally posted by birdycephon
    I dunno, it seems like the guy is living in "the good ol' days". His new game concept looks so 90's. I hope things work out for him, but I doubt I will find his game appealing.

    Before we judge him too harshly, I I think we need to take in to the perspective which point of view he is coming from.

     

    The 90's was the golden age of RPGs. Almost all the most famous computer games RPG franchise was started in that era (Ultima, the golden boxes AD&D, Might & Magic, Wizardry, Fallout, etc the list is too long to go on). Back then because technology was limited, gameplay has to be good - and they WERE indeed really good.

     

    Maybe it's easier to creat great game play since the techology is so limited.

    The way I look is the guy really never make anything comtemporary.  I mean it's good the guy can creat those 2d or 3d sidescrolling whatever game.  But really when the only time he tried to creat a somewhat modern game he failed.

    And he can talk any kind of trash he want.  Not like he can get any kind of funding from his previous track record.  And ya I know NCsoft is being a crap in that situation too, but I'm not sure that I sympathy what happened to him.

    Laokoko makes a great point that I want to emphasize.

    • Back in the 70's and 80's a single person could code a game. The tools used were simple and archaic.
    • Back in the 90's and 00's a small team could code a game. The tools used were limited and shared.
    • In the last few years it takes a large team to code a game. The tools are varied and expensive.

     

    Making a masterpiece with a box of 4 crayons by yourself is difficult but not impossible. (Lord British then)

    Making a masterpiece with a box of 4 million crayons along with 300 other people is much more difficult and nearly impossible (Dev teams of today)

     

    Maybe true, but if it was so we also have seen many instances where it was done properly (for example Neverwinter Nights, Dungeon Siege, Fallout New Vegas, Skyrim, etc).

    To me it seems more like because of the possible complexity the game developers choose instead the route of not letting players interact more with the world in today's RPG in an attempt to avoid effort - because developing something like Fallout NV an Skyrim where you can interact with so many things I'm sure must have been a lot of effort and in fact brainstorming involved.

    Something like Mass Effect however seems a lot simpler and just worry about story (instead of worrying about designing the world behind it).
  • aesperusaesperus Hamshire, NVPosts: 5,128Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by aRtFuLThinG

    Maybe true, but if it was so we also have seen many instances where it was done properly (for example Neverwinter Nights, Dungeon Siege, Fallout New Vegas, Skyrim, etc). To me it seems more like because of the possible complexity the game developers choose instead the route of not letting players interact more with the world in today's RPG in an attempt to avoid effort - because developing something like Fallout NV an Skyrim where you can interact with so many things I'm sure must have been a lot of effort and in fact brainstorming involved. Something like Mass Effect however seems a lot simpler and just worry about story (instead of worrying about designing the world behind it).


    There are definitely some lazy developers out there (quite a few actually), but I think many people (garriott included) tend to assume it's always the 'designer's fault'. The sad truth is, the power of the designer in most cases is somewhat limited. The good ones fight to maintain their vision, while battling against  budget constraints.

    With how expensive most games are now, the business side of things often dictates what gets released. Most designers can attest to situations where they desperately wanted to design a game a certain way, but couldn't due to funancial constraints. Furthermore some publishers are more heavy handed than others. Just look at what happened to the latest Sim City. The game was originally designed for offline play, and then EA turns around and forces them to change it for always on DRM.

    There's too much going on in games to come out and basically condemn the entire industry as 'bad'. There's some really good indie devs out there, and there are some really good commercial devs out there as well. Sure, there are a ton of degree-made designers who suck, but most of them aren't directing projects. They're designing parts of the whole, not dictating the end result. That's just the way things work in large industries / projects. You have the creme of the crop who are making the really impressive stuff, you have a bunch of people who are good, but not great; and you have the people who buy their way in w/ a degree because they like games, and either learn how to be better or suck.

  • AeolynAeolyn Langley, BCPosts: 213Member Uncommon
    Just wondering, how many of you have actually read the whole article this thread refers to?

    "I’m not saying that because I think I’m so brilliant. What I’m saying is, I think most game designers really just suck, and I think there’s a reason why.”

  • azmundaiazmundai St Louis, MOPosts: 1,417Member


    Originally posted by Aeolyn
    Just wondering, how many of you have actually read the whole article this thread refers to? "I’m not saying that because I think I’m so brilliant. What I’m saying is, I think most game designers really just suck, and I think there’s a reason why.”

    honestly ... most ppl on this forum are already of that opinion ... he's one of the last people I would care to hear from on the subject, especially as he is saying it in large part to get hits for his kickstarter.

    LFD tools are great for cramming people into content, but quality > quantity.
    I am, usually on the sandbox .. more "hardcore" side of things, but I also do just want to have fun. So lighten up already :)

  • birdycephonbirdycephon Salt Lake City, UTPosts: 1,314Member
    Nope.
  • aesperusaesperus Hamshire, NVPosts: 5,128Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by azmundai

    Originally posted by Aeolyn
    Just wondering, how many of you have actually read the whole article this thread refers to? "I’m not saying that because I think I’m so brilliant. What I’m saying is, I think most game designers really just suck, and I think there’s a reason why.”

    honestly ... most ppl on this forum are already of that opinion ... he's one of the last people I would care to hear from on the subject, especially as he is saying it in large part to get hits for his kickstarter.

     

    This ^
  • KinchyleKinchyle Hugo, ORPosts: 309Member
    Originally posted by DamonVile

    Well he's not really wrong....he just should include himself in that list.

    you never really know if some of these people are just bad or if they just don't have the budget to see it through.

    lol...this

  • tank017tank017 Glendale, CAPosts: 2,192Member
    So does this mean he's pinning the outright failure of Tabula Rasa on someone other than himself?
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