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The #1 problem with open world games...

cormack12

Gold Member
I suspect I'm in the minority with this one, but I really think the major problem with open-world games is just that the maps are too small.


Games really want to include as much content as possible, so they end up cramming all kinds of shit into a five-square-mile map or something, and then you end up with icons all over your HUD.
If the maps were larger, though, those various HUD objects would look far more reasonable, as they would be spread out over realistic distances.

There are some exceptions (Elder Scrolls games, basically), of course, but it feels like pretty much every open-world game has me running from pockets of enemies to other pockets of enemies, and it usually takes about 20-30ish seconds to run between the pockets.
I understand the need to make games easy to traverse, and to keep the player entertained, and stuff like that. But would it really be that big of a deal to make enemy outposts more than thirty seconds away from each other?

Assassin's Creed, Batman, Zelda, Horizon, Spiderman, Infamous, Halo, Far Cry, Watchdogs, etc. are all basically the same game: Kill this outpost/group of enemies, move a quarter mile in one direction, repeat.



I agree that there are lots of other issues:
- Enemies just stand there, waiting to be killed
- If you move too far from the outpost, it resets and you've wasted all of your ammo
- The outposts themselves are in tactically-idiotic locations
- There's no storyline connecting anything at all
- etc.

But a whole lot of those issues could be made solvable if the maps were just a bit more spread out.
A larger map would also partially, lore-wise, explain why the areas you capture aren't immediately retaken by enemies.



Seriously all making the map bigger does is mean more time holding R2 to drive across it or holding up on the stick to jog through it.

Thats why those interest bubbles exist, to break up the monotony and hide the fact that for 60% of your play session you're just walking/driving. Ubisoft are getting better at making the distractions smaller and 'on the way' but generally all games suck at this.

Unfortunately developers are asking the wrong question which is how often do I need a distraction, instead of how can I make traversal engaing and enjoyable. And woe betide any of the sprinting used stamina shite.
 

I_D

Member
Seriously all making the map bigger does is mean more time holding R2 to drive across it or holding up on the stick to jog through it.



Unfortunately developers are asking the wrong question which is how often do I need a distraction, instead of how can I make traversal engaing and enjoyable. And woe betide any of the sprinting used stamina shite.

I think your first line is solved by your last. If the traversal itself was more fun (Spiderman and Sunset Overdrive are pretty good with this, though they still have tiny maps), then a lot of other issues could be addressed.

But I still stand by my point.
If the maps were just larger, it would be easier to create actually, genuinely interesting engagements, instead of the every-fifty-feet easy-mode engagements we have now.


My favorite open-world games are Morrowind, Kingdom Come, and Witcher 3. All three of those games feature large, open spaces with nothing to do.
I do recognize that I'm in the minority, though. :messenger_winking:
 

cormack12

Gold Member
I think your first line is solved by your last. If the traversal itself was more fun (Spiderman and Sunset Overdrive are pretty good with this, though they still have tiny maps), then a lot of other issues could be addressed.

But I still stand by my point.
If the maps were just larger, it would be easier to create actually, genuinely interesting engagements, instead of the every-fifty-feet easy-mode engagements we have now.


My favorite open-world games are Morrowind, Kingdom Come, and Witcher 3. All three of those games feature large, open spaces with nothing to do.
I do recognize that I'm in the minority, though. :messenger_winking:

Unfortunately it can't in most games given they are grounded in reality though. It works for some fantasy games like flying and webbing, teleporting or railing.

But ultimately you're going to end up with something like RDR2 or Valhalla. And you're not always going to have a mount so walking/sprinting between quests or main cities and towns needs to be achievable sadly.
 

I_D

Member
Unfortunately it can't in most games given they are grounded in reality though. It works for some fantasy games like flying and webbing, teleporting or railing.

But ultimately you're going to end up with something like RDR2 or Valhalla. And you're not always going to have a mount so walking/sprinting between quests or main cities and towns needs to be achievable sadly.

This is going to be a weird analogy, so just bear with me for a bit...


Escape From Tarkov is, in my opinion, the greatest shooter ever made; bar: none.
It is so highly above every other FPS that I've ever played, that it's not even fair to bring up any other shooter in the conversation.

Disclaimer: Before I played EFT, by favorite FPS games were Half Life 1, Halo 1, Doom 1, Duke Nukem 3D, Rainbow Six: Raven Shield, and Perfect Dark. My point is that, when it comes to shooters, I have a pretty good amount of experience.

The reason EFT is so insanely good is that it is entirely grounded in realism.
Is it 100% realistic? Of course not; but that's not what I'm talking about.
I'm saying that the game, with gameplay mechanics still in mind, is aiming to be as sim-focused as possible. And that's what makes it the best ever.

It takes a LONG time to move across the map.
It takes a very quick time to die.
It takes a LONG time to prepare for a mission.
It takes a very quick time to enter, engage, and exit a battle.

This type of pace is prevalent throughout the entire game. Looting takes a while. Healing takes a while. Eating/drinking takes a while. Simply just moving around takes a while.
But the threat is quick. The danger is basically instant.
The result of this is an extremely high level of tension.

And the result of that tension is an IMMENSE feeling of satisfaction when you succeed in your particular mission. And the result of that satisfaction is the feeling that this may damn well be the best shooter ever made.

Now, a big reason that Tarkov is so effective with this type of gameplay is because the maps are so large. A huge amount of your time playing this game will be spent doing non-combative things like looting, healing, hiding, waiting, setting up ambushes, etc. And even the non-mission gameplay is fun. I have thousands of hours in EFT, and more than half of that time was spent in the menus; yet I still had a ton of fun and consider it the best shooter ever.

Part of what makes EFT so good is that the action is spread out, which makes it far more memorable. Part of what makes EFT so good is that the tension is high, so traversal itself is fun and engaging. Part of what makes EFT so good is that the reward for your survival is that survival, itself, is a reward.

What makes this type of gameplay so fun is that the action isn't INYOURFACEALLTHETIME.
The maps are spread out. The action is spread out. The points of interest are spread out.
This allows the players to create dynamic engagements, with thousands of angles of opportunity, and thousands of ways for the engagements to conclude.
And all of this is the result of aiming for realism.


Thus ends my analogy.


Large worlds which focus on tailor-made, though rare, engagements, are FAR more fun (to me) than procedurally-generated engagements spread out frequently over the map.


But I, again, realize that I'm not your typical customer. If you look at your top-ten-sellers month over month, there's a pretty good chance I don't have any interest in 9 of the 10.
 
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AMSCD

Member
Naw, not as bad as getting too powerful from all the rewards you get from completing side quests that turn the story quests into cakewalks.

Thing with Far Cry 2 was that enemies respawned in minutes.
BOTW tried to fix that by having weapons break, but people didn't like that mechanic. Other open worlds have enemies level up with you, but that makes all of your progress pointless. So what's the fix?
 
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Fare thee well

Neophyte
I can't remember the last time I was genuinely impressed by AI. It's probably hard af to program and balance. I'm glad I don't have to, but better AI is something I'd value 10-fold over graphics.
 

Kenpachii

Gold Member
U are talking about a different genre.

Anno 1800 is what u are looking at or RTS games.

Open world where enemy's fight back and take area's back will be honestly the most terrible shit u can imagine. Having to do content multiple times over is beyond annoying.

The bigger problem with open world games is story's and that's with every game really. Story's need to be dailed back massively to the point u actually start to play the dam game u bought instead of just look at it.
 
I do NOT want my outposts to constantly respawn enemies. Outposts are lame enough cookie cutter missions as it is. Give me some semblance of progress if I'm going to be playing on a hamster wheel anyway.
 

V4skunk

Member
I never looked at it that way. My apologies.
Lol.
I agree that games could be refined more. Like using an ai in an open world fps to physically send npc to take over shit instead of spawning in.
Some games kind of already had a similar concept like Stalker where ai roam the map in patrol moving from camp to camp etc.
 

Outlier

Member
at least the mercenaries don't attack you during the main quests but capturing some areas can be really painful. I got attacked by numerous mercenaries when i try to capture big forts or camps.
That's you gotta get creative with your moves. Made the game more exciting for me, but considering how much of a drag the game can be, it gets annoying to have them always nearby, until your notoriety lowers.
 
U are talking about a different genre.

Anno 1800 is what u are looking at or RTS games.

Open world where enemy's fight back and take area's back will be honestly the most terrible shit u can imagine. Having to do content multiple times over is beyond annoying.

Are RTS games "beyond annoying" when the AI mounts a counter attack? Or is that fun?

Obviously the implementation here would be important.

Imagine capturing Intel at some base that informs the player of enemy troop movements and attack targets with time frames.

That way if you know an attack is coming in 5 day/night cycles you can make interesting choices in how you want to prepare.

Right now, the alternative is this with our open world games...

 

Ulysses 31

Member
BOTW tried to fix that by having weapons break, but people didn't like that mechanic. Other open worlds have enemies level up with you, but that makes all of your progress pointless. So what's the fix?
Have only the story quests scale with your level or have the amount of side quests gated behind story progress or how much you've explored already.
 
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tygertrip

Member
Which is a shame, because the game which is probably most responsible for the kickstarting the open world boom - Skyrim - managed all three back in 2011 on 7th gen hardware. Going back to it after playing more recent releases really shows how much basic elements like that have been lost. And the missing out on content thing is far more than just locations and quests: the modern fad for force freezing the game every five or ten minutes in the opening hours to wall-of-text tutorialise you about systems, mechanics and menu options is fast becoming my biggest gaming turn off. I'd much rather figure stuff out just by playing around with it.
Damn. I always thought of Skyrim as a dumbed down and simplified "Morrowind for the easily confused".
 

tygertrip

Member
Not really. Skyrim was dumbed down for the masses. I'm not sure you could even be successful in Skyrim without the map and quest markers. Morrowind is a much better example. You had to listen to quest givers and follow sign posts in the world. This probably isn't intentional but one of my favorite things about Morrowind was when a quest NPC gave me the wrong directions to a location which got me completely lost. That could be frustrating as a regular occurrence but as a one-off, certainly made the world feel more real.
I'm glad someone else appreciates Morrowind over it's dumbed down, hand-holding, siblings. Imagine thinking Skyrim is the deep one! LOL
 

Life

Member
Point of "open world" is exploration. But because it's so much easier to just make enemy camps/bases - instead of creating areas/towns/characters/secrets to explore - most games are dead open worlds with repetitive enemies/missions.

But you know, we keep giving them high scores so they keep making them.
 

bbeach123

Member
Skyrim(and oblivion) have good illusion of a living world . Because npc dont just standing around waiting for you to come and take the quest , some even walk to you to give quest , that the feature I rarely seen in open world rpg .

Botw do the "exploration" part very good . You feel like you're "exploration" , not just doing checklist . You look at the world(not the map) , see some interesting POI , try to get there and exploration instead of open the world map and check the closest POI .
 

aries_71

Junior Member
Far Cry 2 had road blocks that were remanned a short time after you cleared them. I remember it was a universally hated mechanic.

At the end of things you are dealing with a game that has to be entertaining. Mimicking realistic world dynamics will only frustrate the players.
 

kyussman

Member
My biggest problem with open world games is having these beautiful vast enviroments.....and then having the same ten things to do in them,over and over and over again.I understand why they are designed like this as having hundreds of different scenarios play out in the game would take too much time and resources.....but as the worlds get bigger it really starts to grate when you are asked to do the same few things so many times.
 

GeorgPrime

Banned
In multiplayer games, your opponent is there to kill you. In single player, your opponent is there to get ****ed by you.

The last 3 open world single player games I've played were Dragon Quest XI, Ghost Recon Breakpoint, and Halo Infinite. I've only now realized that this genre is literally the digital form of "Hey kid, do you want to play 52 card pickup?!"



You're always this outgunned, outmanned force on a giant map occupied by a world conquering military. Only...they just stand around waiting for you (the player) to methodically kill them bit by bit.

Sure, they all give you these gorgeous maps to pull up, but apparently none of their generals know how to, you know, engage in war? Once you've taken a location over, it's yours for good.



If the player is never under threat from retaliation, why should they take outpost X over outpost Y or Z? If you're playing 52 pickup, the order in which you pick up cards doesn't matter. Your friend/sibling got you and you must pick them up because you said "Sure". That's legally binding.

StarCraft was released in 1998 by 20 Blizzard employees. The AI, in 1998 (22 years ago), wouldn't let you have ****. If you took over one of their bases they wanted it back. What you took over, when, and where it was all mattered back then. Wouldn't



Imagine Chief, Nomad, or the kid wearing the purple dress from DQXI getting intel that's more than simply lore? Isn't that the future we want?

Thats not even the main problem of Open World games and its basically a standard problem for all games.
 

cormack12

Gold Member
This is going to be a weird analogy, so just bear with me for a bit...


Escape From Tarkov is, in my opinion, the greatest shooter ever made; bar: none.
It is so highly above every other FPS that I've ever played, that it's not even fair to bring up any other shooter in the conversation.

Disclaimer: Before I played EFT, by favorite FPS games were Half Life 1, Halo 1, Doom 1, Duke Nukem 3D, Rainbow Six: Raven Shield, and Perfect Dark. My point is that, when it comes to shooters, I have a pretty good amount of experience.

I know what you're saying here because the same applies in some extent in both linear and open games. For a couple of other examples you could also use Fallout and TLOU for example (and though I haven't played it I imagine Death Stranding falls into this category). See the difference in these games is that there is constant tension in the world due to the risks or chance for things to suddenly go terribly wrong. So you have to be careful, you are engaged because survivability is a big part of the experience. You have to be alert and switched on. That's at the heart of what these games give to gamers, and a lot of people like it.

But that core loop isn't important in a lot of open world games and frankly it's for a reason. Those worlds are quite desolate above, even barren in terms of a natural populace. Games like Skyrim, Witcher, Unity have citizens and general NPCs as well as enemies. You just can't have that tension in the same way. Again we can look at RDR2 for what people would consider downtime in these open world games with NPCs - things like hunting, brushing horse, looting bodies, finding collectibles, fishing and crafting ammo. People largely disliked these parts, and yearned for the simple one button press mechanics you find in other games. With regards to traversal, there wasn't much 'tension'. You sometimes got set upon by a bunch of O'Driscolls/Pinkertons randomly, or if you had a wanted level you had to be careful in the states and cities.

Mostly though the loop is the same as others, the world exists to mosey through and at times you will find a side quest, random event or a stranger but they are user initiated distractions. The player has to choose to go and start the event if that makes sense. Also regarding EFT and it's wide base - if you discard the survival mechanics like eating etc. I think you'll find the same kind of tension can be enjoyed in something like the old Rainbow Six games or the upcoming Six Days in Fallujah. I don't think the size of the map matters just the risk/reward.

You are an outlier as you recognise because there are people leaning more towards smaller maps with denser AI. If we take the Matrix Experience, that's a large city space that equals 16km square. GTA Vs map is 75KM square. I guarantee an intimate police chase (with decent AI) in those streets would feel a lot more tension filled than what happens in GTA V for example or even Watch Dogs. Because the world is rich and full of life and provides lots of real world obstacles (peds, cars, bollards, dead ends etc.) Similar to chase sequences like something from Jason Bourne on foot in Paris. But these are just mission designs - There is no reason why something like the sniper sequences from TLOU for example can't work in a proper city environment.
 

GeorgPrime

Banned
What is the #1 problem of open world games?

Most of them being way too big and just filled with boring copy & paste stuff instead of making them smaller with more unique content based on the background of the world and other things - make discovering the world way more interesting instead just being a shallow graphic dream.
 
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TintoConCasera

Gold Member
My main issues beyond cut and paste design is:

-Afraid to let players get lost.
-Afraid to let players miss out on content.
-Afraid to have empty spaces
Yeah, games like BOTW or Morrowind feel like a breath of fresh air.

I'm tired of the theme park design, maps cluttered with icons that kill all sense of exploration.

It's what made me drop The Witcher 3, since I realised most of my playtime was spent looking at the minimap while following it's GPS instead of looking at the fucking game.
 
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01011001

Member
My main issues beyond cut and paste design is:

-Afraid to let players get lost.
-Afraid to let players miss out on content.
-Afraid to have empty spaces

Breath of the Wild funnily enough did none of that.
I played for 50h, finished the game, loaded my save from before fighting ganon, ran to a random direction and found a whole biome on the map that I had not been to for the entire duration of my playthrough...
 

Jigsaah

Gold Member
In multiplayer games, your opponent is there to kill you. In single player, your opponent is there to get ****ed by you.

The last 3 open world single player games I've played were Dragon Quest XI, Ghost Recon Breakpoint, and Halo Infinite. I've only now realized that this genre is literally the digital form of "Hey kid, do you want to play 52 card pickup?!"



You're always this outgunned, outmanned force on a giant map occupied by a world conquering military. Only...they just stand around waiting for you (the player) to methodically kill them bit by bit.

Sure, they all give you these gorgeous maps to pull up, but apparently none of their generals know how to, you know, engage in war? Once you've taken a location over, it's yours for good.



If the player is never under threat from retaliation, why should they take outpost X over outpost Y or Z? If you're playing 52 pickup, the order in which you pick up cards doesn't matter. Your friend/sibling got you and you must pick them up because you said "Sure". That's legally binding.

StarCraft was released in 1998 by 20 Blizzard employees. The AI, in 1998 (22 years ago), wouldn't let you have ****. If you took over one of their bases they wanted it back. What you took over, when, and where it was all mattered back then. Wouldn't



Imagine Chief, Nomad, or the kid wearing the purple dress from DQXI getting intel that's more than simply lore? Isn't that the future we want?
Sounds like the doctor is prescribing 100 cc's of ELDEN RING for this malady.
 
Play your games on hard maybe. Once i learned that normal will allow a player to win by engaging with only some of a games systems, and hard it tuned for the player engaging with ALL the systems, it made single player less boring.

Usually hard is normal if you actually use all systems a game lays out.

Edit: you are saying that the maps/objectives are there to vacuum up, which I get. But I tend to not notice it if there was a challenge to do the sweeping.

To use the original analogy, Solitaire is 52 pickup where you engage with all the game's systems. 52 pickup is a game of Solitaire where you do not engage with the game's ststems.
 
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That is not the number 1 problem of open world games, it's a concession.

The number one problem is excess of gameplay that is not fun, like fetch quests.
 

nani17

Member
My problem is games that were not open world in previous titles but decided to have a go.

I'm talking about MGSV. It just didn't work for me personally. It was repetitive and overall boring compared to other open world titles
 

*Nightwing

Member
RTS are focusing on strategy.

FPS are focusing on firefight.

You can’t expect a cannon fodder front line private solder mount and coordinate a strategic defense of a army brigade like a general.
 

CGiRanger

Banned
Most of them being way too big and just filled with boring copy & paste stuff instead of making them smaller with more unique content based on the background of the world and other things - make discovering the world way more interesting instead just being a shallow graphic dream.
Pretty much my feeling on it as well. Open-world game development is also a massive undertaking which prevents a lot of unique and detailed content because things have to be "open". Pacing pretty much is thrown out the window, and that's why you can end up with long segments of boredom made up of "checklist" game design.

I'd rather have a smaller world that undergoes detailed changes over time, opposed to one super-large world that is barren and static throughout the entire game. Another knock against open-world is that the world cannot change drastically because devs/designers follow the "rule" of "don't block access to content" for players in the world and cannot make them miss things by altering the world too drastically.

Not to mention open-world adds on tons of QA time due to testing all the innumerable permutations and use-cases of players. And these worlds often are chock full of bugs at launch because it's impossible to find them all.
 
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cireza

Member
The real problem with open-world is that developers are struggling to fill them with interesting content. You always end-up in a super tedious loop, that feels too often like work, and that makes everything predictable.

Everytime I play an open-world game that has some good combat and gameplay, I can't help but feel so sad at the wasted potential, as the developers throw at me the same shit over and over again, while they could have actually built 10 superb and well crafted stages, that would all feel different and make for a memorable experience... that I would be willing to play again.

Players get the illusion that their time is respected with games that have 100+ hours of boring, copy pasted content. To this day, I have replayed Burning Rangers so many times, because of how awesome the game is, that you can be sure I have spent 100+ hours doing it. And I still enjoy it, after 20+ years. Same for Jet Set Radio...

We don't need open-world to make good games. It is actually a huge constraint that makes it very difficult to make the games good. This trend can't die soon enough.
 
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Bluecondor

Member
I agree with both the OP about wanting to have a formidable/strategic set of AI opponents (instead of 52 card pickup), but also agree with those of you who pointed out that the "takeback" events in games like Saints Row, GTA: SA and The Division 2 are shallow and repetitive filler.

I agree that random and meaningless attacks just become annoying. But, if the revenge/retaliation system was more strategic and systematic, I think it would be more engaging.

For example, in The Godfather, you took over New York City as the Corleone Family taking over the businesses, warehouses and eventually HQ of the Tattaglia, Stracci, Cuneo and Barzini families. Similar to what the OP described, this eventually becomes 52 card pick-up, especially once you get the most powerful weapons in the game. The 4 families essentially each disappear along the way of the 52 card pickup of taking over all of their territory.

I have always wished that EA made an endgame in which the 4 families worked both together and on their own to open new businesses and warehouses attempting to re-establish themselves and launch real counterattacks against Corleone properties that would hurt you. Then, instead of just running around the map fighting off random counterattacks, you would have to make real choices about going after the 4 families new ventures vs. defending your turf. This is actually what I was hoping for from "Empire of Sin" - sadly, the game is just not well made.
 

Kenpachii

Gold Member
Are RTS games "beyond annoying" when the AI mounts a counter attack? Or is that fun?

Obviously the implementation here would be important.

Imagine capturing Intel at some base that informs the player of enemy troop movements and attack targets with time frames.

That way if you know an attack is coming in 5 day/night cycles you can make interesting choices in how you want to prepare.

Right now, the alternative is this with our open world games...


RTS are about conflict with another player. Otherwise u will have a city builder.

The implementation will not work for single player games. Because the problem u have is.

1) AI being to good = u stuck on the same content forever and u quit
2) time based event = not rewarding enough = u skip it
3) time based event = rewards enough = u are now forced to do it and move out of your way which could annoy you specially if it involves a lot of the same content which often happens same area's. ( for example i like to fish on a day i just want to chill out and farm some food for a character in my game, i don't want to be annoyed by old content i already did with time based events i have to backtrack towards its annoying ).

Other small time based solutions are already in open world games and setting up how u want to flank a enemy army is in AC games for example. However if you want to make meaningful time events and a game based around it u will get people straight up ditching it because u get MM solutions.

I loved OOT, but MM my progress got deleted 3 times and teleported back to the start which meant i simple had no interest in redoing the same shit all over again and quited it to play other games.

Now u do have major time events in open world games that involve what u are talking about but those are in MMO's like guild wars 2. However it gets interesting because u play with a ton of other players and they are basically open world raids. Or lineage 2 where its pure player vs player trying to get map control of eachother or even shooter games like planetside 2.
 
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RTS are focusing on strategy.

FPS are focusing on firefight.

You can't look at the last 30 years of games and not see how prolific the blending and combining of genres has become.

Remember when Mass Effect was "OMG, it's an RPG and TPS?!"

I'm sure you had people saying "RPGs focus on role playing. TPS focus on firefight."
 

*Nightwing

Member
You can't look at the last 30 years of games and not see how prolific the blending and combining of genres has become.

Remember when Mass Effect was "OMG, it's an RPG and TPS?!"

I'm sure you had people saying "RPGs focus on role playing. TPS focus on firefight."
You are 100% correct in the blending…. But no game has bleed over so much it stops being fps and being rts in fps. No one said mass effect was a fps, it was always a rpg in fps form. IE: the game type is rpg, the camera style is fps.


I’d say what you are seeking is going to be a tough find unfortunately. While it is possible to say put in the AI that the training bots at Spartan level of difficulty in halo infinite can be done, but it is niche. Not many gamers would subject themselves to that level of difficulty. And not many developers have the talent to both make that level of difficulty, plus make the game fun to play like if it was a ninja gaiden black fps.

It just doesn’t exist, sorry. So again the issue isn’t that there is something inherently wrong with open world games it is your faulty expectations of them to be something they are not.
 
Most people don't like having their progress removed, myself included. I guess it might sound appealing to some, but I'd find it tedious and annoying as shit. In an open world fps it would be far worse. There would come a point where the area of the world conquered or progressed through would become too large to maintain. RTS games are designed around expanding territory and defending it. Units can be assigned orders and left to do their thing while you move on to the next area of conflict. An fps is not well suited for this type of combat.

Bottom line: there are far bigger isseus in open world games. Also, I'm not understanding the 52 card pick-up analogy.
 
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Bluecondor

Member
Also, I'm not understanding the 52 card pick-up analogy.

I see his 52 card pick-up challenge regularly in Ubisoft open world games. In 52 card pickup, your main overarching goal is to pick up the 52 cards. There is little to no strategy in picking up the 52 individual cards. The end goal is centered around picking up the 52 cards.

In a Ubisoft open world game like AC Odyssey, you have several dozen Greek islands to visit that have various strongholds and other activities. Other than waiting to be the appropriate level for various islands, there is honestly no strategy whatsoever in going to particular islands and completing these activities. And, once you have taken over an island and eliminated its leadership, etc., that's it.

Applying the OP's observation the various Greek islands in Odyssey are analogous to a game of 52 card pick-up.
 

Hendrick's

Gold Member
The #1 problem with open world games is that there isn't the time or budget to make any possible in-game encounter at the same level of quality of a more scripted linear game.
 
I see his 52 card pick-up challenge regularly in Ubisoft open world games. In 52 card pickup, your main overarching goal is to pick up the 52 cards. There is little to no strategy in picking up the 52 individual cards. The end goal is centered around picking up the 52 cards.

In a Ubisoft open world game like AC Odyssey, you have several dozen Greek islands to visit that have various strongholds and other activities. Other than waiting to be the appropriate level for various islands, there is honestly no strategy whatsoever in going to particular islands and completing these activities. And, once you have taken over an island and eliminated its leadership, etc., that's it.

Applying the OP's observation the various Greek islands in Odyssey are analogous to a game of 52 card pick-up.
52 card pick up is not actually a game though. It has nothing to do with strategy or a lack of strategy. It's literally a joke you play on someone who has never heard of 52 card pickup. You make some unsuspecting person have to pick everything up once you throw the cards on the ground. Then you laugh. That's it.

What the op considers a lack of strategy in AC is just one way a dev can give a player freedom to choose what they want to do in their game. It's neither good nor bad. At least I don't see how the open approach equates to something negative. I guess the op likes gated linear experiences, which is fine.
 

FrozenFlame

Member
Does Mount and Blade games count as open world? You get to capture castles, cities, villages, etc, and you still have to defended (with or without you being there) because it will be raided/siege.
 

cormack12

Gold Member
52 card pick up is not actually a game though. It has nothing to do with strategy or a lack of strategy. It's literally a joke you play on someone who has never heard of 52 card pickup. You make some unsuspecting person have to pick everything up once you throw the cards on the ground. Then you laugh. That's it.

What the op considers a lack of strategy in AC is just one way a dev can give a player freedom to choose what they want to do in their game. It's neither good nor bad. At least I don't see how the open approach equates to something negative. I guess the op likes gated linear experiences, which is fine.

I prefer the cowboys and indians variant. You ask someone if they wanna play cowboys and indian.

You hand them 7 cards and say very seriously. These are the cowboys. You are the cowboys.

Then you hold up the rest of the pack and say 'these, these are the indians'. Then you throw them in the air, wait till they land on the floor and say 'round em up cowboys'.

James Corden Hello GIF by The Late Late Show with James Corden
 
Games are long enough already, ain't got no time for campaign games to take back progress from me.

Perhaps a higher difficulty only this sort of behaviour would be welcome.
 

KrakenIPA

Member
Escape From Tarkov is, in my opinion, the greatest shooter ever made; bar: none.
It is so highly above every other FPS that I've ever played, that it's not even fair to bring up any other shooter in the conversation.
I went and checked this game out because of your post and wanted to say thanks, from what I've seen so far it looks like you are correct! I am blown away by the depth and variety of gameplay.
 

tassletine

Member
Excellent point, but most open world games are driven by story and don't really want to engage in that sort of overarching gameplay mechanic. I think it would be a good idea if they did though.
I do seem to remember playing some game where my camps were taken back, but can't remember which.

One of the things I liked about Days Gone was that the Hordes gave you considerable pushback and you would generally avoid them at all costs, doing things around them rather than confronting them headlong as enemies.
I really loved the Horde as a mechanic, something that would come out of nowhere and just ruin everything you were planning, it gave the game that constant feel of being alive and hostile.
The world in that game is very well thought through even if the story does plod.
 
I think your first line is solved by your last. If the traversal itself was more fun (Spiderman and Sunset Overdrive are pretty good with this, though they still have tiny maps), then a lot of other issues could be addressed.

But I still stand by my point.
If the maps were just larger, it would be easier to create actually, genuinely interesting engagements, instead of the every-fifty-feet easy-mode engagements we have now.


My favorite open-world games are Morrowind, Kingdom Come, and Witcher 3. All three of those games feature large, open spaces with nothing to do.
I do recognize that I'm in the minority, though. :messenger_winking:
I think the problem is the exact opposite. The worlds are usually way too big. The best open world in functionality that I've seen last gen was Dying Light. Specifically because it wasn't some gargantuan world that takes 10 minutes to traverse to each location. It's a map that you can actually learn in its entirety, instead of just passing by each POI one time, just to check it off your map.
There's way too many games that have big worlds that serve no purpose. Case in point, Halo Infinite. The open world is mostly barren, with a few uninteresting enemy encounters, and the typical "clear the map" Ubisoft feel to it. There's no good environmental storytelling going on. It's just an open world for the sake of itself. It serves no narrative or functional purpose.

Maps need to be smaller and more dense, not massive and empty.
 
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