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I would love a top developer to create a more condensed, rich open world - hear me out!

Bankai

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Abso-fukin-lutely man, I hate open world games - just for the sake of being open and non-linear.

Give me a smaller, more interesting and thought-out world any day of the week. And keep your randomly generated sh*t away.
 

Marlenus

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The big question is what is the draw? If you take GTA for example and imagine a skyscraper has every room be enterable then while that sounds cool if there is little content in those rooms it becomes a novelty that quickly loses its appeal.

Ultimate with large open worlds I think you get more variety than a smaller one where you can go into every building and find something interesting.

That does not mean it would never work but the scale and game would have to be right. A horror game set around a few remote villages could work because each property could have interesting and different content even if it is only some lore or world building.
 
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Matt_Fox

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Everybody's Gone To The Rapture on PS4 sounds rather like what you're requesting OP. Except for the NPCs which aren't there (as they've all sodded off to the rapture).
 

Cutty Flam

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It almost seems wrong that you can’t go into every place in GTA: Vice City. The entire city seems too lively to not be fully accessible; energy is so high in that game. The color scheme of the game screamed ‘party’ to me and I figure that if there was a way you can enter say, a random pad near the beach, that you could expect a young couple to be dancing to new wave music with a bunch of colorful lights flashing in their room. Like a club. Maybe more was shown highlighting the night life of Miami, that would have been a lot of fun

But I also love how you can’t enter everything in that game. Think about what’s taking place. Tommy Vercetti is out there yelling at everyone on the streets calling people pricks, starting fist fights with others brass knuckles on, baseball bat beatdowns, shooting guns of all sizes day and night out there. He’s in a rampage most of the time. It’s more realistic that people are safe in their houses and you can’t get in. Maybe with some effort, Tommy should have been able to break into some select residential areas; that would add to the game in a way that makes sense. I also think more businesses should be accessible like they were in San Andreas

Going into liquor stores with many different layouts, managers and employees. Fast food joints, full on restaurants ranging from hole-in-the-wall to top notch fancy restaurants. Let the player visit museums, banks, police departments, etc. at will

I love that there is so much to see and imagine in GTA games, but it would also be great to have a little less quantity and more quality areas where people are more interactive to varying degrees. In GTA games there’s a the of every random doing his or her thing / living their lives as you go about living yours so I’m loving that but maybe there can be more interactions in places you wouldn’t have been able to access in the past
 
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carlosrox

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Totally. Been saying this for years.

Something like Resident Evil would be perfect for this cuz they can have a setting in a smaller area but really make it dense and detailed.

Something like RE1 would be perfect. Take us back to the Mansion but let us interact with it even more. Let us board up windows, let us make our own barricades.

Games totally need to do stuff like this.
 
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Markio128

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Skyrim, GTA V, etc, are all already SMALLER than what you're asking for. Skyrim is only a bit over 3 miles wide, for example.
Those games are trying to give the impression of much larger areas though, like having cities within a 20 minute walk of each other, which isn’t particularly realistic. I’m talking about one town, with maybe different areas, such as a forest, lake and beach. Everything would be more lifelike in scale.
 

Markio128

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Totally. Been saying this for years.

Something like Resident Evil would be perfect for this cuz they can have a setting in a smaller area but really make it dense and detailed.

Something like RE1 would be perfect. Take us back to the Mansion but let us interact with it even more. Let us board up windows, let us make our own barricades.

Games totally need to do stuff like this.
Exactly. Like, rather than searching for more bullets in some random place, you could just pick up a chair and smash a zombie around the head with it. Make the game more like the situation would be if it happened in real life. That’s what has recently bugged me a little bit - games sticking so tightly to the typical gaming tropes. Still, the detail shown in the RE8 interiors is really rather nice.
 

Markio128

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The big question is what is the draw? If you take GTA for example and imagine a skyscraper has every room be enterable then while that sounds cool if there is little content in those rooms it becomes a novelty that quickly loses its appeal.

Ultimate with large open worlds I think you get more variety than a smaller one where you can go into every building and find something interesting.

That does not mean it would never work but the scale and game would have to be right. A horror game set around a few remote villages could work because each property could have interesting and different content even if it is only some lore or world building.
Yeah, that’s why I’d prefer the devs to concentrate on a small town, with maybe 100 inhabitants or so. Think Twin Peaks.
 

SoraNoKuni

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I am tired of open world games but that's mostly because devs use it as a checkbox feature when for it to work it needs a great amount of work and only a few studios can pull it off, and it's going to get even harder considering the fidelity standards they have to meet those days.
 
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Markio128

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Quality, not quantity. BotW could have used that.
I really enjoyed BOTW, but there were a lot of vast areas with very little to do, other than find those seeds. Personally, I do prefer Zelda in the form of OOT or MM, with just one small open hub and lots of branching areas. And give me back my dungeons and bosses - but that’s another thread for another day haha.
 

Terenty

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Exactly. Like, rather than searching for more bullets in some random place, you could just pick up a chair and smash a zombie around the head with it. Make the game more like the situation would be if it happened in real life. That’s what has recently bugged me a little bit - games sticking so tightly to the typical gaming tropes. Still, the detail shown in the RE8 interiors is really rather nice.
Dunno if you played Alone in the Dark 2008, but that game had so many cool, unique features in it which sadly haven't been picked up by anyone else since.

The reception was very harsh and it has a very low metacritics score, but man that game is a blast
 

Roni

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Cyberpunk 2077
This, but Cyberpunk is really an open world version of Deus Ex. If you want something smaller, start with Deus Ex and then jump on Cyberpunk. You may also enjoy Fallout 3, Fallout New Vegas, Dishonored 1 & 2 and latest Prey.

Which, in a nutshell, means you enjoy Immersive Sims.
 
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Markio128

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Dunno if you played Alone in the Dark 2008, but that game had so many cool, unique features in it which sadly haven't been picked up by anyone else since.

The reception was very harsh and it has a very low metacritics score, but man that game is a blast
I did play it back in the day. I didn’t really take much notice of critics then - still don’t to a degree. The fact that it remains in my memory is credit to the game, regardless as to what anybody else says. Like you, I really get a kick from devs trying something new/brave.
 
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Reality Czar

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Basically entitled gamer wants GTA x 1000. You want every single interior to be accessible and every person to have a unique AI? Sure. I mean no surprise others want it too. But it is entirely unreasonable.

You are never getting the level of detail you are asking for here. You want a small town that is 100% simulated it just isn’t happening dude. Wake up to reality.
 
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The_Mighty_X

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Breath of the Wild was a barren wasteland. Empty stretches for miles, same few enemy types.

Phantom Pain suffered this as well. We need variety and depth and quantity to our enemy encounters!
 
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LazyParrot

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Sounds pretty much like Deus Ex (old and new).
How? As far as I know NPCs in Deus Ex don't have daily routines at all. They stay in the same spot forever, unless you trigger a script that makes them go elsewhere. Except for a few plot-relevant exceptions, you can't visit their homes, either.

Out of all the games I know, Gothic 1 and 2 probably come closest to what OP wants. A small number of densely populated towns full of NPCS who have jobs, homes, and daily routines and are aligned with some sort of faction that will influence how they act around you.
 
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Panajev2001a

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I much rather have a smaller area with more detail, more unique characters, and re places to explore and a lore that gives me a reason to explore it and do random side quests than a much much larger area. One of the reasons I enjoy Ghost of Tsushima so much… the open world they created is so compelling (IMHO).

GTA V feels like a ghost city on PS4 compared to where I hoped we would be after playing Vice City on PS2.
 
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Markio128

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This, but Cyberpunk is really an open world version of Deus Ex. If you want something smaller, start with Deus Ex and then jump on Cyberpunk. You may also enjoy Fallout 3, Fallout New Vegas, Dishonored 1 & 2 and latest Prey.

Which, in a nutshell, means you enjoy Immersive Sims.
I haven’t played Cyberpunk as of yet - well that’s a lie - I have played it on PS5, but the game was so buggy that I got a refund. I’m keen to see how a PS5 version fares and I will no doubt give the devs another chance because The Witcher 3 was a masterpiece.

I have played and enjoyed those other games you mentioned. Apart from Prey for some reason - I think it was the initial combat that I didn’t enjoy.

Deus Ex is the closest in terms of freedom and consequence that I am after - mix that with Animal Crossing and we may have a plan lol.
 
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Panajev2001a

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That is a really small town if you thrown in kids into the mix.
Yeah, that’s why I’d prefer the devs to concentrate on a small town, with maybe 100 inhabitants or so. Think Twin Peaks.

I think Deadly Premonition 1 was going in the right direction. A remake of that game exclusive to XSX and PS5 could work wonders.
 

Krappadizzle

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Breath of the Wild was a barren wasteland. Empty stretches for miles, same few enemy types.

Phantom Pain suffered this as well. We need variety and depth and quantity to our enemy encounters!

It works well for the narrative in BotW feeling barren. That said, with the Calamity now having been defeated BotW2 is gonna need to show substantial more NPC's and the world rebuilding, which is what I hope they chose to do.

We'll see soon enough.

Phantom Pains open world felt like it was just a part of a checklist and added NOTHING to the game. They could have started Snake 200m away from any of those missions and really helped the pacing issues that game has. The traveling in between being dropped off and the mission was so goddamn boring.
 
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Markio128

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Everybody's Gone To The Rapture on PS4 sounds rather like what you're requesting OP. Except for the NPCs which aren't there (as they've all sodded off to the rapture).
Mate, I loved that game - quite possibly the most realistic depiction of a place in gaming history. Just add people into that village, with daily routines and you get an idea of the scale that I am looking for in an open world game.
 
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Markio128

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How? As far as I know NPCs in Deus Ex don't have daily routines at all. They stay in the same spot forever, unless you trigger a script that makes them go elsewhere. Except for a few plot-relevant exceptions, you can't visit their homes, either.

Out of all the games I know, Gothic 1 and 2 probably come closest to what OP wants. A small number of densely populated towns full of NPCS who have jobs, homes, and daily routines and are aligned with some sort of faction that will influence how they act around you.
I did actually adore the Gothic games on PC, even though I did find them very difficult at the time. Yes, like you said, a self-contained town, with a few additional areas would be enough to allow an immersive experience, as long as the NPC’s behaviours were believable.
 

Panajev2001a

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It works well for the narrative in BotW feeling barren. That said, with the Calamity now having been defeated BotW2 is gonna need to show substantial more NPC's and the world rebuilding, which is what I hope they chose to do.

We'll see soon enough.

Phantom Pains open world felt like it was just a part of a checklist and added NOTHING to the game. They could have started Snake 200m away from any of those missions and really helped the pacing issues that game has. The traveling in between being dropped off and the mission was so goddamn boring.
Perhaps, I spent over 120 hours in that game (do not ask me how, I seem to only be playing GoT nowadays and still only clocked 70 hours) and enjoyed it greatly.
 

Markio128

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It works well for the narrative in BotW feeling barren. That said, with the Calamity now having been defeated BotW2 is gonna need to show substantial more NPC's and the world rebuilding, which is what I hope they chose to do.

We'll see soon enough.

Phantom Pains open world felt like it was just a part of a checklist and added NOTHING to the game. They could have started Snake 200m away from any of those missions and really helped the pacing issues that game has. The traveling in between being dropped off and the mission was so goddamn boring.
Totally agree with the Phantom Pain. The actual gameplay mechanics and the missions were as good as can be, but the travelling in between them was really unnecessary. This is a good example of stretching dev time too thin. Can you imagine how much better those mission locations would look if they were self-contained areas? They could have also spent more time creating a more engaging and satisfying story.
 
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Markio128

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It almost seems wrong that you can’t go into every place in GTA: Vice City. The entire city seems too lively to not be fully accessible; energy is so high in that game. The color scheme of the game screamed ‘party’ to me and I figure that if there was a way you can enter say, a random pad near the beach, that you could expect a young couple to be dancing to new wave music with a bunch of colorful lights flashing in their room. Like a club. Maybe more was shown highlighting the night life of Miami, that would have been a lot of fun

But I also love how you can’t enter everything in that game. Think about what’s taking place. Tommy Vercetti is out there yelling at everyone on the streets calling people pricks, starting fist fights with others brass knuckles on, baseball bat beatdowns, shooting guns of all sizes day and night out there. He’s in a rampage most of the time. It’s more realistic that people are safe in their houses and you can’t get in. Maybe with some effort, Tommy should have been able to break into some select residential areas; that would add to the game in a way that makes sense. I also think more businesses should be accessible like they were in San Andreas

Going into liquor stores with many different layouts, managers and employees. Fast food joints, full on restaurants ranging from hole-in-the-wall to top notch fancy restaurants. Let the player visit museums, banks, police departments, etc. at will

I love that there is so much to see and imagine in GTA games, but it would also be great to have a little less quantity and more quality areas where people are more interactive to varying degrees. In GTA games there’s a the of every random doing his or her thing / living their lives as you go about living yours so I’m loving that but maybe there can be more interactions in places you wouldn’t have been able to access in the past
I loved Vice City because the 80’s was my decade, when I became a young adult. The soundtrack was perhaps my favourite of any game. Like you said, the protagonist would not suit the type of game that I am alluding to, but it didn’t stop my imagination running wild, wondering what was going in an apartment block, or home. I think the game I’m wishing for would require you to be in control of some kind of everyman With an interesting job, like a private investigator, for instance, solving crimes for the inhabitants of a small town.
 

Soodanim

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Breath of the Wild was a barren wasteland. Empty stretches for miles, same few enemy types.

Phantom Pain suffered this as well. We need variety and depth and quantity to our enemy encounters!
TPP's empty world feeds into why GZ is the better game, even if it is shorter. There's so much to do in that smaller game, and while there's lots to do in TPP it's spread so much more thinly across that world that it's held back.

I'd swap TPP for several more GZ bases, perhaps larger in size as time went on. More like how modern Hitman games do it.
 
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I feel like this is what Cyberpunk 2077 tried to be with it’s city but as it was rushed out failed.

I feel like the next GTA will be close to what you desire in that they’ll go with a smaller more detailed map over one the size of something like Skyrim, TW3 or BotW. I think the interactive random NPC encounters from RDR2 will be greatly expanded on for GTAVI.
 
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RoadHazard

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Those games are trying to give the impression of much larger areas though, like having cities within a 20 minute walk of each other, which isn’t particularly realistic. I’m talking about one town, with maybe different areas, such as a forest, lake and beach. Everything would be more lifelike in scale.

Wasn't Dragon Age 2 kind of like that, mostly taking place in one city? And it's the one people like the least.