If you are truly a diehard gamer geek who has enough years to compete with many trees then you are in no doubt in the same boat as the rest of us. Pining away for the games of yesteryear. Or yester-OS in the case of computer technology. Have you ever pined away when you found an old CD of one of your favorite games? Wishing you could somehow find a patch that would overcome the change from a 32-bit to 64-bit advancement? Even with the many options out there for altering a PC’s performance, a games play life is counted in short years rather than decades. How many games do you have that you wish someone would just upgrade but not remake?
Personally I have about three games I would give anything if someone would just upgrade them but not remake them. The games were super as they were. Just limited by the available technology at the time is all. Like Mechwarrior3, Vampire the Masquerade: Redemption and the Wing Commander series. Three games I could still pile on countless hours. Alas with a new OS and 64-bit technology the days of nostalgic gaming are going the way of the dinosaur.
Which is sad when you think about it thoroughly. Many games of yesterday were based upon the game and not the graphics. Try as they might they just could not pull off some of the things you can see on a console game. So instead they developed the best gameplay they could, wrapped it inside a good story and set about making sure you were challenged as a gamer. Button mashing was not a good thing to do in some of those games. Knowing when to do what determined whether you would have to restart that mission/map or continue on with the thrill of a great fight.
Think about the next generation of gaming. Many programmers/designers today probably have a slew of games they can call off the top of their heads without hesitation. Games that had to be installed from a series of floppy disks rather than just one DVD. games that more than likely influenced them to become a PC game designer. So no matter the technology you have a designer that has been forged on an anvil of patience and determination. Heck, I still wish I could fire up an old Commodore-64 (yea I said it) game called Elite. Wire frame graphics but ingenious combat radar and program mechanics. Simple technology compared to today but at the time that was the best they had access to that was affordable to the new consumer base. So they did the best they could with what they had. Compensating for the lack of graphics with gameplay.
But now look at the young gamer of today. Stunning cut scenes, movie quality gameplay and incredible processor speeds. Add in internet play and you have a whole new breed of gamer. But at what cost? It will be interesting to see the 30 year cycle hit the gaming industry. If not familiar with the 30 year cycle then just do some research into every “new” movie, song, TV show or latest fad. You might be surprised what you will find if you just rolled the clock back exactly three decades. The industry of PC gaming has made tremendous leaps and bounds but it was not that long ago that arcades were the ONLY place you could go to get your gaming fix. We have not even closed the gap on that third of an average life span yet.
So with baited breath, crossed fingers and a lot of knocks on wood I am waiting to see if some game designer has in his sights to upgrade some of the classic games graphically but leave the meat of the game alone. Learn the lessons from Doom and Duke Nukem so they can capture that magic we experienced. Tweaks will have to be incorporated but here’s hoping that someday we will see VTM:R, Mech3, Wing Comm., Elite and a slew more. Maybe even re-do the Diablo franchise so the original games will install properly without an IT degree.
So until next time. Game on!