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Reply 20 of 47, by RandomStranger

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Ensign Nemo wrote on 2022-11-01, 18:14:

I noticed that a lot of the choices are the earliest 3D open world games. When the technology finally allowed for these types of games, we were spoiled with some really immersive worlds. I also think that the writing was better back then, so I doubt that I will get as immersed in anything coming out today.

To me it appears the majority is more like mid-2000s games. GTA Vice City, Half-Life 2, GTA4 Fallout 3, World of Warcraft, Shadow of the Colossus, Dead Space, Mass Effect and most of what I mentioned are all between 2003 and 2008. And even the older ones are mostly from around 1998-2001. I'd assume it's more like most of us replying are in our early-to-mid 30s and these are the games of our teenage years.

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Reply 21 of 47, by Ensign Nemo

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RandomStranger wrote on 2022-11-01, 18:36:
Ensign Nemo wrote on 2022-11-01, 18:14:

I noticed that a lot of the choices are the earliest 3D open world games. When the technology finally allowed for these types of games, we were spoiled with some really immersive worlds. I also think that the writing was better back then, so I doubt that I will get as immersed in anything coming out today.

To me it appears the majority is more like mid-2000s games. GTA Vice City, Half-Life 2, GTA4 Fallout 3, World of Warcraft, Shadow of the Colossus, Dead Space, Mass Effect and most of what I mentioned are all between 2003 and 2008. And even the older ones are mostly from around 1998-2001. I'd assume it's more like most of us replying are in our early-to-mid 30s and these are the games of our teenage years.

I agree that nostalgia probably plays a big factor, but I think that I can make an argument for technology playing a large role. I'm in my late 30s and Space Quest III is the only game in my list that I played before my 20s. I didn't play any of the Deus Ex games until my late 20s or early 30s. Same goes for System Shock 2. I didn't include some of my favorite games because it's not the environment that makes me love them. If I was listing my favorite games, I would have included X-Com and IL-2 Sturmovik 1946, which I didn't play until my 30s.

A lot of these games were the first 3D game in a well established series (eg GTA). I think that many people would agree that the games in long lasting series tend to run out of steam after so many sequels. I would expect that younger gamers would probably list GTA V over III, but I think that a lot of them would gravitate to the earlier games in other series if they played them. That's especially true if the player is either fine with worse graphics or if graphics mods are available. I think a lot comes down to the importance of graphics because, imo, there haven't been many major innovations in awhile apart from improved graphics. Multiplayer might be another one, but I think that story driven single player games leave a longer lasting impression when it comes to environments.

Reply 22 of 47, by vstrakh

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For me it's Anachronox. The great storytelling, music, voice acting, locations carrying emotional imprint.
Some in-world elements (architecture or furniture designs) are so reasonable and natural you'd wonder why something like this does not exist yet in the real world.
I was not accustomed to final-fantasy-like fights back then, so the style of combat events did not affect my perception of Anachronox as a pure adventure.
Still occasionally re-watching the machinima on youtube.

Reply 23 of 47, by retrogamerguy1997

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mr.cat wrote on 2022-11-01, 14:09:

For me, that moment in Fallout3 when you first go outside of the Vault...just wow.
Back in the day I was very sceptical about fo3 steering away from the isometric-turnbased style, but fo3 won me over very quickly once I played it.
I did enjoy the sequel New Vegas too, but atmosphere-wise fo3 feels slightly more consistent somehow.

I played Fallout 3 as my first Fallout game and I too was taken in by the Capital Wasteland. I tried getting into Fallout 1 a few times but I just couldn't get into it at all.

Reply 24 of 47, by TheChexWarrior

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Myst 3. The silence wind and water weispring and the story and the place no other game token my so far in my soul, somethings I never felt before.

Roller Coaster Tycoon 3: the 3D of 2005 with fun like assembly game make my very very happy and the free etrractive buildings of the parks, I have a lot of lot of memories of that peroid.

Freedom Fighters 2001: The levels was inspiring, the mission the possible of the 3D back than make my days at school releasing in 2 of meanings. Its sad reallity like today, but after it come the freedom 😀 !!!!

Duke Nukem Forever 2001 leak. For this non words besides wow.

Reply 25 of 47, by Joseph_Joestar

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Back in 1996, the first level of Duke Nukem 3D looked amazingly real to my kid eyes. You could even interact with a bunch of stuff like light switches, toilets, hydrants, fire extinguishers, pool tables and so on. That left a huge impression on me, and other FPS games of the time which didn't have that kind of interactivity just felt subpar.

The next time I was wowed by game graphics was in Half-Life 2. I remember thinking how the textures on the houses looked so real, some of them even being worn down from age and such. Oddly, I wasn't a huge fan of the actual game, but the presentation still thoroughly impressed me.

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Reply 26 of 47, by Ensign Nemo

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Joseph_Joestar wrote on 2022-11-01, 21:23:

Back in 1996, the first level of Duke Nukem 3D looked amazingly real to my kid eyes. You could even interact with a bunch of stuff like light switches, toilets, hydrants, fire extinguishers, pool tables and so on. That left a huge impression on me, and other FPS games of the time which didn't have that kind of interactivity just felt subpar.

My mind was already blown before it came out just from reading about it in a PC Gamer preview. The most advanced shooter that I had played was Doom, which is obviously great, but Duke 3D sounded more like a realistic world. Best part is that it lived up to expectations.

Joseph_Joestar wrote on 2022-11-01, 21:23:

The next time I was wowed by game graphics was in Half-Life 2. I remember thinking how the textures on the houses looked so real, some of them even being worn down from age and such. Oddly, I wasn't a huge fan of the actual game, but the presentation still thoroughly impressed me.

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Reply 27 of 47, by DosFreak

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I've never spent tons of time playing a game. I play it and hopefully finish it and them I'm done unless 5 to 10yrs down the road I play it again.

For me probably the Lost Treasures of Infocom and BBS games like tradewars.
As far as more "game" type of games or "modern games" then: SMB, Mean Streets, Monkey Island , Knights of Xentar (certainly left an impression if nothing else) and then Wolf3d, Doom,DaggerFall,Duke3D, Thief\Deus Ex\SS.
Games that have a narrative and/or interaction and/or feedback that can rarely reach the same level.
Pretty much though it's all variations of the same thing. Later games may have hook or a gimmick but nothing really "lasting" unless that was the first game you started with.

As far as 2D games going to 3D at least for me it wasn't that big of a deal. I still see Mario 64 as inferior and gimmicky.
F3 was just another iteration of Oblivion and it didn't affect my thoughts of F1 and F2 since they are completely different games.
GTA 3 was GTA 1 and 2 in 3D but I never thought much of GTA 1 and 2 and heck Urban Chaos game out long before.
Mass Effect felt too cinematic (I want to play games not movies, hell Star Trek Borg\Klingon was more interesting than this) and shallow with subpar graphics, consolitis and just felt like Bioware was cashing in compared to their previous games.
GTA IV is pretty meh for me but Ballad of Gay Tony was good as were Vice City, San Andreas and GTA V but nothing really "lasting".

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Reply 28 of 47, by Jasin Natael

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My picks in no particular order:
- Unreal
-Half Life
-Deus Ex
-Serious Sam
-Fable
-Max Payne and Max Payne 2

I am sure there are others but those are off the top of my head.

Reply 29 of 47, by Namrok

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RandomStranger wrote on 2022-11-01, 18:36:
Ensign Nemo wrote on 2022-11-01, 18:14:

I noticed that a lot of the choices are the earliest 3D open world games. When the technology finally allowed for these types of games, we were spoiled with some really immersive worlds. I also think that the writing was better back then, so I doubt that I will get as immersed in anything coming out today.

To me it appears the majority is more like mid-2000s games. GTA Vice City, Half-Life 2, GTA4 Fallout 3, World of Warcraft, Shadow of the Colossus, Dead Space, Mass Effect and most of what I mentioned are all between 2003 and 2008. And even the older ones are mostly from around 1998-2001. I'd assume it's more like most of us replying are in our early-to-mid 30s and these are the games of our teenage years.

It's hard to detangle nostalgia from any attempt at assessing objective quality. But I do think the relatively open world games, or at least games with significant nonlinear segments, mentioned above are better than the typical Ubisoft open world schlock. They were more varied, and less compulsive. Open world games in the Ubisoft model, which is most of them, just deluge you in a minimap full of icons. Hours and hours of busywork to clear. The entire structure of the game around about trying to get you to lean into the compulsiveness of it. Compulsiveness over fun by a mile, given how tedious and rote many of the minimap icon tasks are. The only benefit they provide you is going away.

I think about my time in GTA, and I remember getting into shenannigans for the pure joy of it. Finding an area of the city where I knew I could find a really fast car, and trying to make huge jumps with it. Seeing how much heat I could get on me, and still escape, just for the fun of it. The mayhem you could cause was a joy in and of itself. Although I guess the game was still littered with collectibles. But they weren't constantly nagging me to get more, and I barely remember what they did, so I didn't care. I did feel compelled to complete all the side missions, and some of them were a real doozy. But they felt relatively constrained in number compared to the hundreds an average Ubisoft game is padded out with today. The worlds in these older games also had odd environmental story telling flourishes that served almost no direct gameplay purpose. I appreciate those. These days there seems to be no slack in the world design of a game, and absolutely every nook and cranny must serve some tedious spelled out purpose, devoid of wonder.

I think that's a large part of my problem with a lot of modern games. The compulsiveness of them. Even if they have every bit as much emergent gameplay, that could be fun just for the sake of fun, they ruin it with all the compulsive aspects. They tie the collectibles to in game upgrades. They tie the unfun side quest to faction scores or some other overall progress number. And whatever fun the game has on offer, gets psychologically overshadowed by all the compulsive stuff they keep trying to get you to do. It's like they don't even have faith that the fun is enough. Tetris never needed meta progression.

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Reply 30 of 47, by ThinkpadIL

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And now for something completely different ...

game-of-life-loop-cropped.gif
Filename
game-of-life-loop-cropped.gif
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192.99 KiB
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1197 views
File license
Public domain

It's not a game in the complete sense of the word ... but it is still a game. I'm talking about "The Game of Life". When I've discovered it I was amazed. It is the same time a very primitive and a very complicated and versatile zero-player game.

Reply 31 of 47, by RandomStranger

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Namrok wrote on 2022-11-02, 15:33:

But I do think the relatively open world games, or at least games with significant nonlinear segments, mentioned above are better than the typical Ubisoft open world schlock.

Sure, no doubt about that, but both of you just missed my main point. It being that most mentioned games are mid-2000s games rather thane early 2000s games which would be mid 90s.

I also agree that most modern open world games are way too bloated.

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Reply 32 of 47, by Shagittarius

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Ensign Nemo wrote on 2022-11-01, 18:14:

I think that's a large part of my problem with a lot of modern games. The compulsiveness of them. Even if they have every bit as much emergent gameplay, that could be fun just for the sake of fun, they ruin it with all the compulsive aspects. They tie the collectibles to in game upgrades. They tie the unfun side quest to faction scores or some other overall progress number. And whatever fun the game has on offer, gets psychologically overshadowed by all the compulsive stuff they keep trying to get you to do. It's like they don't even have faith that the fun is enough. Tetris never needed meta progression.

I really agree with you on that. Collection elements to me are terrible, you use to be able to ignore them, but not when they affect the results of gameplay efforts. I think adding RPG elements into all games has been taken too far. There is a happy absorption of RPG mechanics into other genres but there is moderation needed too. I don't need a hamster wheel or fake agency to enjoy good gameplay elements.

Reply 33 of 47, by Ensign Nemo

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Namrok wrote on 2022-11-02, 15:33:
RandomStranger wrote on 2022-11-01, 18:36:
Ensign Nemo wrote on 2022-11-01, 18:14:

I noticed that a lot of the choices are the earliest 3D open world games. When the technology finally allowed for these types of games, we were spoiled with some really immersive worlds. I also think that the writing was better back then, so I doubt that I will get as immersed in anything coming out today.

To me it appears the majority is more like mid-2000s games. GTA Vice City, Half-Life 2, GTA4 Fallout 3, World of Warcraft, Shadow of the Colossus, Dead Space, Mass Effect and most of what I mentioned are all between 2003 and 2008. And even the older ones are mostly from around 1998-2001. I'd assume it's more like most of us replying are in our early-to-mid 30s and these are the games of our teenage years.

I think that's a large part of my problem with a lot of modern games. The compulsiveness of them. Even if they have every bit as much emergent gameplay, that could be fun just for the sake of fun, they ruin it with all the compulsive aspects. They tie the collectibles to in game upgrades. They tie the unfun side quest to faction scores or some other overall progress number. And whatever fun the game has on offer, gets psychologically overshadowed by all the compulsive stuff they keep trying to get you to do. It's like they don't even have faith that the fun is enough. Tetris never needed meta progression.

I agree with this completely. A big pet peeve of mine is that most games are too long. I don't have 4 hours a night to play games, so finishing a 100 hour game takes me forever. I think you described how games are artificially made longer by adding a lot of filler. I think gamers are partly to blame because a lot of them will complain that a 12 hour game is too short. Outside of a few games, I prefer a game to be short. The only exceptions are games like Oblivion, where I want to get totally immersed in a cool world. For most games, I'm not interested in finding collectibles or grinding away on generic quests for hours and hours.

Reply 34 of 47, by Ensign Nemo

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ThinkpadIL wrote on 2022-11-02, 15:51:

And now for something completely different ...

game-of-life-loop-cropped.gif

It's not a game in the complete sense of the word ... but it is still a game. I'm talking about "The Game of Life". When I've discovered it I was amazed. It is the same time a very primitive and a very complicated and versatile zero-player game.

I bet you'd really like some of the evolution and biology simulations out there. For example:

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=rPkMoFJNcLA

Not as pretty, but you can get this on Steam for a dollar:

https://store.steampowered.com/app/396890/Gridworld/

The Creatures series looks like cutesy kids games, but has a very detailed simulation underneath the hood:

https://www.gog.com/en/game/creatures_the_albian_years

My work involves biology and computers, so I have taken an interest in these types of simulations. I could list a lot more.

Reply 35 of 47, by ThinkpadIL

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Ensign Nemo wrote on 2022-11-02, 17:56:
I bet you'd really like some of the evolution and biology simulations out there. For example: […]
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I bet you'd really like some of the evolution and biology simulations out there. For example:

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=rPkMoFJNcLA

Not as pretty, but you can get this on Steam for a dollar:

https://store.steampowered.com/app/396890/Gridworld/

The Creatures series looks like cutesy kids games, but has a very detailed simulation underneath the hood:

https://www.gog.com/en/game/creatures_the_albian_years

My work involves biology and computers, so I have taken an interest in these types of simulations. I could list a lot more.

Thank you for the links. Life simulation through zero-player games is a very interesting field. I think it deserves a separate thread and I'll be glad to learn more about it from more involved folks.

Reply 36 of 47, by Ensign Nemo

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ThinkpadIL wrote on 2022-11-02, 20:07:

Thank you for the links. Life simulation through zero-player games is a very interesting field. I think it deserves a separate thread and I'll be glad to learn more about it from more involved folks.

I don't want to hijack this thread, but I would certainly create a new one if there is interest. I'll try to get around to it today, as I will need to do a bit of reading first.

Reply 37 of 47, by GoblinUpTheRoad

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I thought Far Cry had a very pretty environment for it's time. The bright green trees, the blue water and the white sandy beaches made for some nice scenery.

56c4948488a7e300458b4740-6.jpg

Reply 38 of 47, by gerry

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RandomStranger wrote on 2022-11-01, 18:36:

To me it appears the majority is more like mid-2000s games. GTA Vice City, Half-Life 2, GTA4 Fallout 3, World of Warcraft, Shadow of the Colossus, Dead Space, Mass Effect and most of what I mentioned are all between 2003 and 2008. And even the older ones are mostly from around 1998-2001. I'd assume it's more like most of us replying are in our early-to-mid 30s and these are the games of our teenage years.

it does seem to be around then, but i'd played a lot of games for good amount of time before the likes of gta 3 and as much as I'd liked those other games i hadn't often felt that environmental wow, the sense of being in a world so perhaps it is the technology. After all Driver, supposedly similar, was around earlier but the city there felt like a 'level' not a simulation. Indeed the art of creating a special environment that goes beyond a 'level' or a 'map' is likely a combination of tech and creativity

Namrok wrote on 2022-11-02, 15:33:

I think that's a large part of my problem with a lot of modern games. The compulsiveness of them. Even if they have every bit as much emergent gameplay, that could be fun just for the sake of fun, they ruin it with all the compulsive aspects. They tie the collectibles to in game upgrades. They tie the unfun side quest to faction scores or some other overall progress number. And whatever fun the game has on offer, gets psychologically overshadowed by all the compulsive stuff they keep trying to get you to do. It's like they don't even have faith that the fun is enough. Tetris never needed meta progression.

yes a good point, as much as i want things to do i don't want compulsiveness or a sense of missing something important if you dont do x right now - a tricky balance but perhaps unlinking various numerical measures of success from activities is one way

GoblinUpTheRoad wrote on 2022-11-03, 06:13:

I thought Far Cry had a very pretty environment for it's time. The bright green trees, the blue water and the white sandy beaches made for some nice scenery.

yes, it has that sense of entering a rich setting - a bit like unreal did back in the day - but like unreal Far Cry quickly becomes a series of levels - nice and open but still levels. good game though!