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Why Won't Companies Make it Clear Their Games are Roguelikes in Marketing?

Warnen

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AV

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I dont think the pure definition of genres apply in games anymore. YOu can certainly call Far Cry an rpg game these days, can you not? Leveling up, crafting, skills, multiple ways of dealing with enemies, multiple ways of doing missions, etc. With your logic I can say Hades is not a rogue-like either. You can certainly not die and reach the final boss and that is it. You can certainly die in any game and not advance anything but then again it really isnt like Deathloop or Returnal or Hades now is it? Because dying in these games is the point. You have to. In roguelite games you have to die in order to get better upgrades and advance the story. In Souls games you don't have to die. You certainly must not.

Same rule applies as far as I'm concerned, Far Cry is not an RPG, it has "RPG elements" in the same way you're arguing Deathloop has "roguelike elements", except for me the first is way more true - but that's mostly because "RPG elements in a non-RPG" is such a prominent example throughout gaming history. In this case? IMO it's a stretch.

And no, the point I was making with Twelve Minutes was that you can fail to advance the story, not that doing so is intrinsically tied to the roguelike genre. Of course you can get stuck on (nearly) any game and fail to advance it.

Heading out now but let's just say it's a grey area, I personally just wouldn't say from what I've seen that Deathloop shares enough DNA with Rogue to call it a roguelite, but your mileage may vary.
 

YeulEmeralda

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Yeah these try hard games are not for me. Games are just playable movies that I play for fun wasting some time. Don't get a sense of achievement from beating them.

But there's obviously a market, see From Software.
 

GymWolf

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Depends entirely on the game sure. Does not have to be a pure roguelike, and Deathloop certainly isnt, however they can adopt roguelike/lite mechanics. Dying and restaring wihtout reaching the point of "upgrade" is certainly in the rogue subcategory and in Deathloop as I saw in a video you can certainly get nowhere and keep dying without advancing the "puzzle" or story. Would that not be considered a game with rogue mechanics? In Twelve Minutes you advance the story no matter what. It's a different matter.
If i understood right, even when you die you collect info that you are gonna use in the next run, and not something abstract that you have to remember, but colt saying stuff or clues floating in the air or a recap of the villains movements on your personal board that you can check when you change zone/hour.
And you gain stuff in every run, from unlocking new weapons to upgrading abilities etc.
Devs said that enemies are dumb on purpose because they are not the major challenge in the game, solving the puzzle is.

Getting blocked and not advancing the story sound kinda similar to any game with hard sections or bosses, i was blocked for hours repeating the same thing in many games, but it doesn't make them any more roguelite than they are.


I don't know, for me me a game where combat is not the main core can't be called roguelite, for me it's more of a immersive sims mixed with hitman with a mix.

I would never describe this game as a roguelite to a friend who search for a classic roguelite, and when you have to lose 10 min explaining how is it different from a roguelite, can you really still call it a roguelite?!
 

TheCockatrice

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Same rule applies as far as I'm concerned, Far Cry is not an RPG, it has "RPG elements" in the same way you're arguing Deathloop has "roguelike elements", except for me the first is way more true - but that's mostly because "RPG elements in a non-RPG" is such a prominent example throughout gaming history. In this case? IMO it's a stretch.

And no, the point I was making with Twelve Minutes was that you can fail to advance the story, not that doing so is intrinsically tied to the roguelike genre. Of course you can get stuck on (nearly) any game and fail to advance it.

Heading out now but let's just say it's a grey area, I personally just wouldn't say from what I've seen that Deathloop shares enough DNA with Rogue to call it a roguelite, but your mileage may vary.

Sure, I suppose I'd have to play Deathloop myself to see exactly whats what. Its hard to see things from random videos but I believe the genre rules or what defines them have been long ignored or changed drastically. rpg elements is a very long discussion, I;d rather not have here as I've argued in the past many times about what defines an rpg or a game with rpg mechanics. Mass Effect was a very strong example in this discussion but anyway once I get Deathloop, I'll see for myself whats what. The marketing for the game has certainly been weird.
 

TheCockatrice

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If i understood right, even when you die you collect info that you are gonna use in the next run, and not something abstract that you have to remember, but colt saying stuff or clues floating in the air or a recap of the villains movements on your personal board that you can check when you change zone/hour.
And you gain stuff in every run, from unlocking new weapons to upgrading abilities etc.
Devs said that enemies are dumb on purpose because they are not the major challenge in the game, solving the puzzle is.

Getting blocked and not advancing the story sound kinda similar to any game with hard sections or bosses, i was blocked for hours repeating the same thing in many games, but it doesn't make them any more roguelite than they are.


I don't know, for me me a game where combat is not the main core can't be called roguelite, for me it's more of a immersive sims mixed with hitman with a mix.

I would never describe this game as a roguelite to a friend who search for a classic roguelite, and when you have to lose 10 min explaining how is it different from a roguelite, can you really still call it a roguelite?!

I'll have to play it and see for myself but I was certain based on the videos I saw, granted not many, that it was a roguelite immerssive sim or basically a dishonored game with roguelite mechanics. Hell until recently I didnt even know you could not get rid of enemies silently and non-lethally so the more I learn about the game the less Im interested. Bodies vanishing automatically? Ugh. Just kinda ruins the mood of playing stealthy.
 

McCheese

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Deathloop isn't a roguelike, if anything it's more akin to a Metroidvania game. Sure you technically revisit the same areas, but you also unlock new abilities by killing the targets which open up a ton of new exploration options, so you never really doing the same things when you repeat visit those areas. If you don't think of it as time repeating and instead just enemies respawning, it's really not that unusual.

As for RRP price, it comes down to the budget of the game more than the genre, I've put hundreds of hours into Hades which is a pure roguelike and feel I've got way more than my monies worth out of it, on the flip side I've paid £70 for linear AAA games and bounced off them bored after the first hour. If a game doesn't cost much to make, sell it for less, if you made a roguelike with a big AAA budget, then charge an AAA price for it. I don't think the casual gamer really even thinks about genres, they just like the look of something or don't.

Returnal being a roguelike was the only appealing aspect of it for me, the visual direction, lead character and story all put me off. Not the other way around.
 
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GymWolf

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I'll have to play it and see for myself but I was certain based on the videos I saw, granted not many, that it was a roguelite immerssive sim or basically a dishonored game with roguelite mechanics. Hell until recently I didnt even know you could not get rid of enemies silently and non-lethally so the more I learn about the game the less Im interested. Bodies vanishing automatically? Ugh. Just kinda ruins the mood of playing stealthy.
Yeah i didn't liked that thing myself, but the devs said that the real challenge of the game is the puzzle, even the combat is not that hard because enemies are dumb AF.

This is not you typical stealth where enemies search you for long time etc. they forget about you pretty soon if they don't see you.

They said that they searched for the right balance to not make the game overly frustrating, i don't know if i like the sound of that but i need to play the game to understand if making the right moves to kill all the targets in one loop is already and hard task without the need of difficult shooting\stealth sections.

One thing is sure, i trust arkane and if they decited for vanishing bodies, they probably have their reasons.

p.s. you also had to deal with juliana that hunts you and can ruin your loop at any given moment, even worse if you play online and a real person controls her...
 
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KungFucius

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Returnal

Deathloop

One $70 game, another $60. Both Roguelikes.

We know Sony understood that they messed up by not making it clear that Returnal was a Roguelike in the marketing via a survey they sent out, but what about Bethesda?

Deathloop releases tomorrow and we're just now learning from reviews that the game is a Roguelike. Hell one review says it takes more than an hour of gameplay to get any powers, which you can then lose by resetting the game.

Why are companies afraid to make this clear before release? Do they want to wow the casuals with flashy trailers and trick them into paying $70/$60 for a Roguelike?

Were studios blinded by the success of indie Roguelikes in the previous gen to the point of hubris that they thought they could get away with AAA pricing for one?
Because a lot of people hate roguelikes and they would rather deal with pissed off people asking for refunds than being honest.
 

itsjustJEFF

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I don't think the general public even knows, or frankly even cares about it being a Roguelike. They don't have the thinking of "oh it's randomized, these enviro's aren't hand made, should be cheaper" that hardcore gamers have. They think it looks cool, they buy it. When they play it, they don't wonder "WTF is this, randomized environments..." They kinda just accept it and if it's fun, if they like it, it was worth it.
 

ethomaz

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I"m not sure if Deathloop is Roguelike... I'm inclined to say it isn't.

But Returnal was marketed as Roguelike.

"In Returnal you get to dive deep into the mind of Selene, an Astra space scout trapped in a hellish loop of endless resurrection while trapped on a hostile planet. The roguelike formula mixed with exploration platformer elements allow for a unique way to explore the planet and continue the battle she is fighting. Of course, there will be plenty of Housemarque arcade flourishes present, so prepare to be bombarded by volleys of bullet-hell projectiles along the way."

 
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NinjaBoiX

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Nobody outside of gaming forums knows what a roguelike is, it would just confuse people.
I never even knew what a rogue like was until Returnal was announced. Just saying a game is a rogue like isn’t likely going to mean anything to most people.
Yup, I had to look it up the first time I heard the term. And I’ve been into video games for years.
 

6502

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What is a roguelike?

Is Mario Bros on NES a roguelike?

That Mech game on xbox?

Pac Man?

Is there a formula of time spent vs no continues?


This sounds like when the kids started calling gear of war an fps. Which makes sense if you consider Tony Hawks a first person puzzle game.
 
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BigBooper

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It's really weird. Do they think they will get less sales if they clearly explain what the gameplay is? Then why make that type of game?

For the record, I hate roguelikes and roguelites, so this kills any interest I had in it.
 
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CamHostage

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Beyond the fact already pointed out that the term "roguelike" is a convoluted concept that not everybody agrees much less understands what it is, one of the reasons why they avoid the term "roguelike" in marketing is because "Rogue" is a brand name.

Rogue was a game, published by Epyx, licensed by Mastertronic, and probably owned by somebody. Maybe they wouldn't get sued, but maybe, plus why align your product with somebody else's franchise when you're trying to make it stand out on its own? You don't see on the package a 2D open-world action-adventure game calling itself a "MetroidVania" (although indies now do it all the time on Steam, since it became a googlable term.) Nobody wanted to admit they were a "Tetris Clone", they called themselves "falling block puzzles" or something to that effect. Sometimes something is described as "Lovecraftian" and they get away with it, but more often, they use the more nebulous "eldritch horror" even if it's got a danged Cthulu monster in it.
 

GymWolf

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This trailer is 6 months old, it perfectly explain the game and it's only 3 min long, it was loaded in the official bethesda channel.

This is why when i hear people talking about misleading marketing etc. i feel like i'm getting trolled.

When i had no idea of how the game was structured i just wrote on yt "deathloop explanation" and this is literally the first result.

 

Andodalf

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I would not call Deathloop rogue like at all. To me Roguelikes are definitely by their arcade like nature, being designed around optimizing runs in a score attack fashion. Deathloop is primarily a story based game, in which you progress through a defined story
 

TrueLegend

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I will always say fuck intransparent marketing. This happens many time.

I think most companies need to fire their marketing department. They are always doing everything against the game's long term interest. They eat your money then aplogize like recent Control UE fiasco and HFW fiasco with no upgrade path for standard edition.

Its the matketing department which sees a PS5 box and then says you know what lets put 8K on it. 8K really, 4K120fps lie wasnt enough. Yes buy TV for 4K120 buy TV for 8K, bitch do you even play games. What are you trying to do, blow my house with PS5. If PS5 could play games at 8K it will be flying with all the jetfire coming from its back.
 
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Reallink

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I don't think the general public even knows, or frankly even cares about it being a Roguelike. They don't have the thinking of "oh it's randomized, these enviro's aren't hand made, should be cheaper" that hardcore gamers have. They think it looks cool, they buy it. When they play it, they don't wonder "WTF is this, randomized environments..." They kinda just accept it and if it's fun, if they like it, it was worth it.

Serious question, haven't read any reviews, is Deathloop actually randomized or do you just keep playing through the same environment trying to get further?
 

Velius

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Did you guys seriously not know? I've known for the better part of the year
 

GymWolf

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That was my suspicion, doesn't seem like a type of game that would work with randomization.
Exactly, everything need to work like a clock to being solved as a gigantic puzzle.

But you can influence the loop with your actions to get the targets where\when you want.
 

kuncol02

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Returnal

Deathloop

One $70 game, another $60. Both Roguelikes.

We know Sony understood that they messed up by not making it clear that Returnal was a Roguelike in the marketing via a survey they sent out, but what about Bethesda?

Deathloop releases tomorrow and we're just now learning from reviews that the game is a Roguelike. Hell one review says it takes more than an hour of gameplay to get any powers, which you can then lose by resetting the game.

Why are companies afraid to make this clear before release? Do they want to wow the casuals with flashy trailers and trick them into paying $70/$60 for a Roguelike?

Were studios blinded by the success of indie Roguelikes in the previous gen to the point of hubris that they thought they could get away with AAA pricing for one?
For one. None of that games is roguelike. They are at best roguelites.
 

GymWolf

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Lol there is not a single immersive sims on the market with a timer or when you can't experiment with stuff, usually you can use everything you learn in the same level or the next one, i don't understand what the hell he is saying.
If anything, the fact that if you die you lose part of your progress and there is no save scum, kinda descourage experimentation in deathloop, although you can just start a loop just to experiment with mechanics without loosing nothing.
If it is about learning an area, if you see, do and collect everything that an area has to offer you are probably playing that area for hours and hours, at the end you memorize the area more or less just by exploring every nook and cranny.

You are not dim and uncreative because of the game, but because you are probably used to most games having far less player agency than arkane games.
 
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Captain Toad

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Yeah these try hard games are not for me. Games are just playable movies that I play for fun wasting some time. Don't get a sense of achievement from beating them.

But there's obviously a market, see From Software.
What a boring mindset for gaming.
 
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Danjin44

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Based on whole “loop” concept, it was pretty clear what they were going for with Deathloop.
 
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Sometimes, I get more hours in a rouguelike than I do a full game. Shit, people play MP games all the time, can’t get more rogue like than that.
 

JerryinSoCal

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I don't know why so many studios decided they wanted to do this type of game but it's not something that most gamers want. I pretty much always finish games that I buy but I haven't touched Returnal in a long time, it's minute to minute gameplay is fun but the constant starting over just isn't for me, I doubted it would be my type of game ahead of time but I wanted to support Housemarque so that's why I bought it, I won't buy another one though.
 

itsjustJEFF

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Serious question, haven't read any reviews, is Deathloop actually randomized or do you just keep playing through the same environment trying to get further?
From what I've gathered, it's not randomized. Every enemy will be in the same spot as previous, as far as I know. I believe the "gimmick" of the game is to experiment in different ways of getting through the level, by using different mixes of abilities, routes, and attack styles. The reviews seem to enjoy the "loop" of the game. I picked it up as a "good job" to Arkane... but, also a farewell! Thanks for all the hard work, have fun at team Xbox!

EDIT: I believe that enemy placements differ depending on the time of day you enter an area or zone.
 
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mxbison

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Every single Deathloop trailer I've seen (and it feels like there have been like 20) has shown the nature of dying and repeating.
 

TheMan

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Personally I'm not big on rougelikes myself, but it is quite interesting how difficult it is to pigeonhole this game.
 

balt1kr1s

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I dont think the problem is not telling people upfront that those games are roguelike/lite but actually explaining what those "rogue" definitions actually are.

Those types of games really dont exist in AAA space, Its just easier to market them as action games with "groundhog day" type of narrative and see the results in sales.

To be honest, have read myself interviews with the developers of the most popular roguelikes and even they dont know the definitions, dead serious now, which makes those debates amongst gamers even more funny about what they are :D