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 Post subject: Hotline Miami PostPosted: 2012-10-24 08:18am
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Please tell me someone else here is paying this. Please.



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 Post subject: Re: Hotline Miami PostPosted: 2012-10-24 06:03pm
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Dude, even if you didn't have literally the worst taste in the entire universe as defined by modern science, think about where you are. If the game isn't World of Tanks, a licenced product, or feature some 'well known' marketable nerd personality, nobody cares.

Speaking of taste I sent Ford a pic the other day revealing I've played 66 hours of Resident Evil 6. Peeps from SDN are playing it, but nobody talks about it here because nobody cares.



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my first manager and I spent the better part of an hour in his office asking an insanely hot female employee to go through the "B" authors in the Lit section. Why? Because that would make her climb up on the ladder right where the security camera was and gave us a perfect view of her perfect gazongas
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 Post subject: Re: Hotline Miami PostPosted: 2012-10-24 06:37pm
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I have literally no idea what this game is. Post some details, maybe?



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 Post subject: Re: Hotline Miami PostPosted: 2012-10-24 06:44pm
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http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2012/07 ... i-preview/

I'm currently on the level they're previewing there, and that is an accurate preview. The game is a mix of top down shooter like Smash TV (terrible comparison), Super Meat Boy (dying all the time, but fast turnover, instant level restart etc) and the movie Drive (the soundtrack is VERY much comparable).

Anyhow http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2012/10 ... mi-review/ that's the Rock Paper Shotgun review and again, it's accurate. It's got a very addictive gameplay loop, helped by the fact that the graphics work and the soundtrack. Did I mention the soundtrack? http://soundcloud.com/devolverdigital/s ... i-official You can listen to the whole thing there.



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 Post subject: Re: Hotline Miami PostPosted: 2012-10-24 06:59pm
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I'm just picturing you playing this game, teeth clenched, headbanging away.

This is not good marketing. Maybe if you summarize the links and describe the game in a meaningful way beyond 'dies a lot and lol I like the music'.



Elfdart wrote:
my first manager and I spent the better part of an hour in his office asking an insanely hot female employee to go through the "B" authors in the Lit section. Why? Because that would make her climb up on the ladder right where the security camera was and gave us a perfect view of her perfect gazongas
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 Post subject: Re: Hotline Miami PostPosted: 2012-10-24 07:12pm
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Top down twin stickish game. One hit kills everything (except for a solitary boss character who needed a special execution). You have to kill everyone on a level to continue. You start without any weapons, but choose a mask each with its own special ability.

The game plays FAST and you die so damn much. But it's like Trials or Super Meat Boy in that you instantly start over and minimises at least my frustration.

The story is crazy. I'll compare it to Dreamweb and not just because of the style of the art.



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 Post subject: Re: Hotline Miami PostPosted: 2012-10-26 03:06am
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GiantBomb quicklook of it. A good 25 minutes of them playing. Not playing it well at times, but it gives you an idea of what it is. Plus, Patrick's increasing rage makes it even better.



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 Post subject: Re: Hotline Miami PostPosted: 2012-10-26 03:19am
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It totally turned me off. Since we released it at GOG I had a good look at it beforehand. It reminds me of Carmageddon, only top down.

There are people out there that like this kind of gameplay. Luckily, I am not one of them.

And I grow weary of the pixel-graphics fad. It seems that indie developers have found a way to hide abysmal gameplay behind "oldschool" art because, you know, if something is "retro" then it must be good.



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 Post subject: Re: Hotline Miami PostPosted: 2012-10-26 03:35am
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I've mentioned I really like the gameplay previously.

Also, the pixel-graphics "fad" is also a way to cut costs significantly because you don't need artists and 3d modelers and animators. I won't hold it against them if the gameplay is good or the art is used in a good way like it is here.



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 Post subject: Re: Hotline Miami PostPosted: 2012-10-27 02:20am
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Tolya wrote:
And I grow weary of the pixel-graphics fad. It seems that indie developers have found a way to hide abysmal gameplay behind "oldschool" art because, you know, if something is "retro" then it must be good.

I agree that some games may get away with crappier gameplay by pretending to be retro, but don't call it a fad. It's used by indies because indies simply don't have the resources required to make 3D graphics or anything prettier. A lot of indie companies are very, very, very small staffs. When you have like one guy, maybe two, doing your art is isn't really a fad as much as it is the easiest way to get a full game's worth of art out of there without needing to, you know, spend all of your money hiring a whole art staff.

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 Post subject: Re: Hotline Miami PostPosted: 2012-10-27 06:06am
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Some games have shit art and a cool idea. The shit art by itself is valueless.

Saying a game has pixel art is like saying a band has a great drummer. :lol:



Elfdart wrote:
my first manager and I spent the better part of an hour in his office asking an insanely hot female employee to go through the "B" authors in the Lit section. Why? Because that would make her climb up on the ladder right where the security camera was and gave us a perfect view of her perfect gazongas
whatisprojectzohar.com

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 Post subject: Re: Hotline Miami PostPosted: 2012-10-27 10:45am
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Stark wrote:
Saying a game has pixel art is like saying a band has a great drummer. :lol:

It's a means to an end. It is more like saying a band has a drummer.

Good pixel art can be beautiful, like Odin Sphere, and shitty pixel art is easy to find and glaringly awful, like all bad game art. If the art style works and doesn't offend the eye then it has done its primary job of being art that conveys information to the user visually. If you start noticing how bad it is then it has probably failed a task, but if you take exception to it BECAUSE it is pixel art then someone has rode into your little Indie game experience on a high horse. I apologize my 3-man company didn't have a competitive AAA art department for our $2 game! Dun eyuo be juardgin me!

There's a difference between Indie and Independant, in the sense of self publishing, like the people who did Braid or Bastion or something. Being 2-4 guys working yourself is a far cry from 10-12 industry veterans with financial backing that can afford to have better graphics because they've got expensive gear and 3 art dudes working on it. Basically, if you judge a game by what it tries to do and the cost you paid for it, that's fair, just don't be hating on it because a game that costs you less than a King-Sized Candy Bar only has pixels.

That said, Hotlime Mimi looks like pixel vomit to me, but this is not my genre of choice, so the glaring colors and messy aesthetic doesn't work for me the way it does of a fan of, say, Smash TV.

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 Post subject: Re: Hotline Miami PostPosted: 2012-10-27 02:46pm
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Smash TV doesn't have fans; it has hipsters. It barely even exists as a game. Twin stick shooters exist because of Geometry Wars and mobile phones, not nerd self delusion.

And don't get sensitive about pixel art; it's just not a selling point. Fez wasn't interesting because of the art. Minecraft wasn't successful because of the 'art'. Games are good or bad based on their content, and if there's so little content or you're such a hipster 'has pixel art' is a selling point, the game is obviously pretty lacking.

Even shit like 'is third person' actually impacts the way a game works. Pixel 'art' is either a sign of a small team or a trap for fat people or both, and contributes nothing to the game. Well, arguably Fez used the art style in a meaningful way to hide the interesting shit it was doing with perspective, but it would have been the same with more or less art.



Elfdart wrote:
my first manager and I spent the better part of an hour in his office asking an insanely hot female employee to go through the "B" authors in the Lit section. Why? Because that would make her climb up on the ladder right where the security camera was and gave us a perfect view of her perfect gazongas
whatisprojectzohar.com

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 Post subject: Re: Hotline Miami PostPosted: 2012-10-27 05:16pm
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Covenant wrote:
Tolya wrote:
And I grow weary of the pixel-graphics fad. It seems that indie developers have found a way to hide abysmal gameplay behind "oldschool" art because, you know, if something is "retro" then it must be good.

I agree that some games may get away with crappier gameplay by pretending to be retro, but don't call it a fad. It's used by indies because indies simply don't have the resources required to make 3D graphics or anything prettier. A lot of indie companies are very, very, very small staffs. When you have like one guy, maybe two, doing your art is isn't really a fad as much as it is the easiest way to get a full game's worth of art out of there without needing to, you know, spend all of your money hiring a whole art staff.


You cannot really deny that the whole 8-bit pixel style Spectrum-whatever type of graphics is making a comeback. Indies existed beforehand. World of Goo, Penumbra, Lugaru, Machinarium -just to name a few - and somehow they managed to have pretty modern graphics, even taking into consideration their art "department" is one-two people. Certainly no pixel stuff.

So yes, it is a fad to me. People are obviously trying to find quality outside A*n titles. The fact that the general gameplay quality doesn't seem to go higher in the case of indie titles doesn't matter. People remember having fun playing retro games 20 years ago, so they expect them to be fun now too. The fact that most of them turn out to be crappy doesn't matter. Ah, preconceptions.

Also, funny thing. Somebody on some internet board whined about today's games shipping out in crap-state. He said that pre-2000 games didn't have bugs. Which is of course untrue - people just don't remember/didn't pay attention/had no way of knowing, since the internet wasn't as big as it is now.



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 Post subject: Re: Hotline Miami PostPosted: 2012-10-28 01:34am
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Stark wrote:
And don't get sensitive about pixel art; it's just not a selling point. Fez wasn't interesting because of the art. Minecraft wasn't successful because of the 'art'. Games are good or bad based on their content, and if there's so little content or you're such a hipster 'has pixel art' is a selling point, the game is obviously pretty lacking.

I'm not sensitive about it, I did read a lot more venom into what he was saying though. It wasn't personal sensitivity as much as it was professional indignation. It's not like 'achieving modern graphics' is complex, or automatically even LOOKS better. Pixel art isn't easier to do than World of Goo or Angry Birds flash-esque stuff. It's a billion times easier to draw something like Castle Crashers flash art than it is to draw Symphony of the Night 32-bit pixel art, in my experience. When I was working with some boned characters I was able to make a very satisfying run and walk cycle in a day when it was a nightmarish effort to do it pixel by pixel.

It just seemed like an entirely unreasonable criticism, like calling an interest in stage plays a hipster bit of nostalgia for not giving modern special effects and settings. Given the examples he gave of 'modern graphics' I can see that's not the case, but it just seemed wonky. There's nothing un-modern about pixel art (companies haven't stopped using it) but I will grant that using a garbage art quality (like, say, 8-Bit shitgraphics) and using that to disguise terrible gameplay is a terrible thing.

Pixel art, as an aesthetic, isn't automatically and indistinguishably hipster or a fad or banking on nostaglia or anything. It can be, but it's not like we can make legitimate criticisms about all variety of 2D and 3D art. I wouldn't say "3D Modeled Art" is a selling point either. I don't check out a title and go "Whoah, it uses 3D rendering. Badass." I'd say if it looks good, it looks good, and that's the selling point. Shitty 3D art from the PS1 era certainly isn't a selling point either. I'd rather a company work in 2D than 3D if that's what ends up looking better. And pixel art has a place there, you CAN make it look really pretty. But if you want to be taken seriously you need to make sure your art looks nice. If you're going to work with pixels then make sure you're doing a modern look. I contend it can be done in such a way that it looks lovely even without nostalgia glasses on.

Tolya wrote:
You cannot really deny that the whole 8-bit pixel style Spectrum-whatever type of graphics is making a comeback. Indies existed beforehand. World of Goo, Penumbra, Lugaru, Machinarium -just to name a few - and somehow they managed to have pretty modern graphics, even taking into consideration their art "department" is one-two people. Certainly no pixel stuff.

That we can agree on. 8-bit art can be pretty if you go for Sword & Sworcery style, but I think the real problem here is (as I said above) not that it is pixel art but that it is shitty pixel art using a retro style to disguise poor gameplay. Making it a "throwback" game and not a homage using modern ramped-up aesthetics shouldn't get you any extra points.

You gotta distinguish between the look and the art aesthetic used. They used a shitty pixel art aesthetic but if they hadn't they'd have used a shitty hand-drawn aesthetic or a shitty Unreal engine aesthetic because they made a shitty looking game and that's what they were going for. Machinarium looks nice because it is drawn in a beautiful style, but if it had been a shitty hand drawn style I don't think it being "modern" would earn any points over a game that legitimately looks painterly in a pixel art style.

Just don't hate an entire aesthetic, it would make you look ignorant. But it's legit to say that making something in 8-bit form, unless you do an amazing visual job, is pretty lame. 8 bit is a restrictive style and no fun to draw in. The only reason to do so is because you're a pretentious twat or because you've decided to pretend to be a pretentious twat to draw attention away from the fact you couldn't come up with anything more original than what people used to come up with back when they had like 5 bits of memory to play with.

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 Post subject: Re: Hotline Miami PostPosted: 2012-10-28 02:29am
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Also in the case of Hotline Miami the graphics serve as a way to make the violence less of an issue (both for the player and for ratings). The reduced impact of violence for the player is part of the story, and one that it seems to be telling well. Making you click repeatedly for each time you smash someone's head into the floor to kill them after knocking them out - actions like this begin to take their toll, especially as the story ramps up and your targets are occasionally completely non-resistant, but you have to do this horrible thing anyway.

I mean, you can tell a guy is having his eyes gouged out in this art style, but the fact that you aren't watching it in SUPER HD PHOTOREALISM in first person means that it's having the reduced impact the designer intended.

*edit* Also, the game is set in 1989, so the style may be a throwback for those reasons too, along with the obvious economic and probably game design reasons.



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 Post subject: Re: Hotline Miami PostPosted: 2012-10-28 04:19am
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See wht I mean? The game having shit graphics and really old or simple mechanics makes those mechanics intrinsically better for captain gonzo. I'm sure all the people who wrote tearful apologia for shooting other players in Day Z will lap this up, while dismissing endless reams of actual good games with actual content you don't have to make up in your own head because giant bomb said so.

And yeah Cov I didn't mean that in a harsh way, I just know you've actually got real world experience with the kind of tradeoffs that can drive art like this. I have nothing against any art style, but when you use 'art sucks' as an actual selling point to hook in gullible idiots (as this game does and has done since it was announced), I have to laugh.



Elfdart wrote:
my first manager and I spent the better part of an hour in his office asking an insanely hot female employee to go through the "B" authors in the Lit section. Why? Because that would make her climb up on the ladder right where the security camera was and gave us a perfect view of her perfect gazongas
whatisprojectzohar.com

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 Post subject: Re: Hotline Miami PostPosted: 2012-10-28 05:08am
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Stark wrote:
And yeah Cov I didn't mean that in a harsh way, I just know you've actually got real world experience with the kind of tradeoffs that can drive art like this. I have nothing against any art style, but when you use 'art sucks' as an actual selling point to hook in gullible idiots (as this game does and has done since it was announced), I have to laugh.

I talk shit but I'm not mad at anyone, no worries. I'm well aware of the value of selling shit to people who want to buy something shitty. It's not a big ethical concern to me, I just had my dander up because I thought someone was slandering an ENTIRE art style just because a whole bunch of people are willing to use "shitty" as a selling point.

Like, "Oh man, this movie? It's so good. They shot it like an old shitty movie! It looks exactly like an old shitty movie, but they just made it! So now its good, or something, instead of sucking! I'm going to go see it again, because it's so creative to copy something that was really terrible 20 years ago!"

I love Tarantino movies, but I know he rides that line a lot, drifting over from "look shitty but is actually very stylistic and clever" into "just looks shitty" enough to make people think, I'd say incorrectly, that he's actually just making crappy movies and saying they're clever instead of making clever movies.

When a game does that it better be pretty damn obvious why it's good. Shooting a movie on terrible film stock because "it's like a shitty monster movie" is a bad way to replicate the reason why a shitty monster movie can be fun, and without trying to do it in a way that makes for a good shitty monster movie. Blegh. Whatever. I'm not mad.

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