I Miss Carmack, Too

Thorkos: I wish Carmack would tell his boys: "Alright. Quake 5. Now. Here's what I want…Quake 3. Prettier, better ragdoll. More levels. Better AI. Some extra game modes for shits and giggles. And if any of you fuckers clutter up a skill-based deathmatch arena with useless bullshit, I'll fire you."

Ishpeck: Carmack is too busy porting Keen to iPads.

Ishpeck: He lets the rest of the business do its thing.

Ishpeck: I hate to say this because he really is one of my heroes but… I think he's outlived his usefulness.

Thorkos: He really needs to man up and realize that there's been a void in gaming for quite a few years now.

Thorkos: And he's letting Call of Duty redefine the genre he fucking invented.

Ishpeck: I assert that Call of Duty really is a new beast. It's as related to DooM as the modern hen is related to the tyrannosaur us rex.

Thorkos: It's really not. I've played enough of it. The only thing that separates it from CS is a few things:

Thorkos: 1) Aim down the gun.

Thorkos: I can take or leave it. Kinda fun in some situations.

Thorkos: 2) Prone

Thorkos: 3) Gimmicks (perks for kill-streaks, death streaks, etc.) that inherently UNBALANCE the game

Thorkos: 4) A levelling system that gives people who grind more power.

Thorkos: That's it.

Ishpeck: S'like saying Uno and Poker are only different in the colors of the cards.

There's enough difference in the pacing and character of the player's choice-networks that I say the technical/interface relationships may be there but the essence of the games is entirely different.

Thorkos: I entirely disagree with your assessment.

Thorkos: The only reason the pacing is different in the bomb maps for CoD vs CS is because there's a maxround of 5, FUCKING 5, and a roundtimer of like…1 minute?

Thorkos: So there's no time for tactics at all. You just run like hell.

Ishpeck: Okay part of this conversation stems from the fact that I'm measuring CoD vs games actually made by Carmack… and you're including Camperstrike in the mix for some reason.

Thorkos: Because of the following. I actually do categorize them in different categories.

Thorkos: CS is also guilty. And it was my mistake to bring it in.

Thorkos: But only slightly different.

Thorkos: Carmack's void is one of the Deathmatch FPS.

Thorkos: I brought in CoD because when you say FPS, the old "first thing to mind" was Quake, or UT, depending if you were a fanboi or not.

Thorkos: Now, you say FPS, and the average gamer jumps on "CoD"

Thorkos: So…there's no real "redefinition," just a change in perspective in the popular culture.

Thorkos: I personally classify FPS into 3 subgenres:

Thorkos: Fake, Semi-real, Real

Ishpeck: Well, that and the term "FPS" only tells you that you show the world from a first-person view and that some shooting may b e involved… that tells you NOTHING about the game. Just the medium of the game.

Thorkos: Annotatively, sure, but that's a complete bullshit statement when spoken to gamers.

Thorkos: You don't say "FPS" when talking about portal.

Ishpeck: I've never thought the terms "FPS" and "RTS" or "RPG" have had much meaning whatsoever.

It's the sort'a thing that the vulgar sub-humans use to describe how they celebrate their mediocrity.

Thorkos: More or less, but when you're participating in a culture that values that "mediocrity," you kinda have to take part in und erstanding it, whether or not you feel like you transcend it.

Ishpeck: So the trite will say that DooM is "like an old, CoD with bad graphics," never describing the nuances that makes either o f those games what they are. Their terminology is as useless as they are.

Thorkos: For the same reason that musicians differentiate "Psychadelic" from "Avante-Garde" from "Fusion" jazz.

Ishpeck: Right.

Thorkos: Sorta. I'm just being an indignant asshole.

Thorkos: FPS is broad.

Ishpeck: I am, too.

Thorkos: So it used to mean "Fake DM FPS" Quake…etc.

Thorkos: Now it means "Semi-Real Team-DM"

Thorkos: CoD, Rage, Battlefield, etc.

Ishpeck: My understanding of combat leads me to believe your notions of realism are as meaningless as the term "FPS"

Thorkos: My delineations refer to only a few mechanics.

Thorkos: Fake: Generally no recoil, reliable lack of delta, little to no reticle knocking, superhuman speed / jumping, modifiable inertia mid air.

Thorkos: Semi-real: Some recoil, may or may not include human injury mechanics, higher delta, reloading mechanics.

Thorkos: Real: Human injury, recoil, magazine size, and other mechanics trying to replicate real-world conditions while maintainin g fun.

Ishpeck: Yeah, I understood your meaning. I also think that those terms do great disservice to the assessment of the actual game-p lay.

Thorkos: Meh, they're just words. They can be changed. The concepts can remain.

Thorkos: I don't mean them as pejorative definitions.

Ishpeck: The problem is that they're rooting the assessment into how the game narrates itself rather than in what choices the playe r makes.

Thorkos: Quake is good because it's good, not because I classify it as "Fake"

Ishpeck: Yes.

Ishpeck: Quake is good because of the way players explore a choice matrix that stems from overlaying core mechanical principles wit h the emergent options of map layout and relative player positions.

Realism is infinity percent irrelevant here.

Thorkos: Not quite.

Thorkos: The emergent properties change with the physics.

Thorkos: Timing lines are inherently fucked.

Thorkos: If you change jumping / strafing properties.

Thorkos: Some lines are destroyed entirely.

Ishpeck: These statements are necessary for my statement to be true. They do not refute it.

Thorkos: Except that "realism" can easily be related to your "overlaying core mechanical principles"

Thorkos: As those core mechanical principles seek to emulate real-world properties, for example, gravity.

Thorkos: Inertia.

Ishpeck: It stems from one of Maggott's most sacred mantras: Symbolize, don't simulate. A good game comes from presenting a comple x and adventurous network of choices to the player. You should use notions of reality to help convey the characteristics of the choices you present. Reality is to be exploited to help tell the actual story – not replicated at the expense of it.

Thorkos: That's a good mantra.

Ishpeck: In good game design, reality is a convenient point of reference to help analogize the game. But the game is its own thing ; not related to reality in any real way whatsoever.

Thorkos: That would depend on its developers.

Ishpeck: Yes. And that is the litmus.

Thorkos: I can't believe we're having this argument.

Thorkos: We're on the complete opposites of our normal positions.

Thorkos: You're arguing relative solopsistic abstracts.

Thorkos: And I'm arguing for the tenable real world analogies.

Thorkos: This is so weird.

Ishpeck: I consider myself to be arguing a mathematical absolute.

Thorkos: I would read back to what we've gone through then, and maybe pull up some of our old pointless debates.

Thorkos: I think we've somehow swapped sides for this one.

Date: 2012-07-18 15:30

Author: Anthony "Ishpeck" Tedjamulia

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