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The Waiting Game - How Video Games supposedly evolved.

Updated on August 20, 2008

Excited Phase 1

You just heard about this amazing new console (let's call it Jubilee) that's going to come out sometime in the next holiday season. At first you're not too sure. Will it really be worth buying? Will it have good games? However from reading more and more about it from magazines and TV show you suddenly start getting a bit excited.

Excited Phase 2

So, you finally decided to go check out some of the games for the starting line-up of the Jubilee's release. There are a few games you'd be interested in, but not too many.

Excited Phase 3

That's right, you read it correctly: Your favorite game series will have a new installment on this brand new console and from the looks of it, it'll be an amazing game. (let's call it: Burning Fire Tires 7)

Excited Phase 4

The console has been released but the game you are waiting for won't be for about 6 months. You figure it's best to start saving up now so that you can buy the console and game at the same time.

Excited Phase 5

6 months have passed. You just went to the store and dished out somewhere around 300 bucks to buy Jubilee and Burning Fire Tires 7. You are now giddy in your car and as soon as you get home you put the console on and the game in so that you can start playing right away...

Oh wait, you can't.

How do you put the game in? They really don't make it that obvious. Where did they hide the button? "Grr, let me get the stupid booklet."

Oh ok, game in.

First you have to give out a username. Ok. "Player1111. Let's play!!!"

Oh no, you still can't. You are asked to fill out a profile and possibly some settings for future online play. Oh, but wait, you only want to play the one-player part of the game right now. You're thinking "I can fill out all of that info later on, right now I want to play".

Ah, but of course you can't go on until you've filled out all of the required parts of the profile. Now it's time to play!!!

If only you could find the games section of this complicated media menu. You thought you bought this console to play games, but apparently the console makers decided they wanted you to also share media. Isn't that what your computer is for? Oh well, time to attempt locating the games menu.

Ok, it's found. Let's start the game!!

[disc loading]

[publisher logo] You attempt to click all the buttons in order to skip directly to the start page, but it doesn't work

[developer logo] You're still clicking in the hopes of a direct skip

[other logos you're not sure why they are there] Still clicking...

[start menu finally loads] You pick New Game. Player name? Meh, you'll just use the default name. Oh wait, there isn't one. Ok, you'll just write the shortest name you can think of: "Ed".

Getting excited and ready to play aren't you?

[Title sequence] "Wow, look at how pretty this is, they've done a great job!"

[3 minutes later] "Still going. When does this end?"

[eventually..] "Ok, the mini movie's over, time to play!"

"I have to enter a character name? I'll just use the default."

Aww, there's a tutorial sequence. This wouldn't be so bad if they hadn't made it so obvious that it was meant to initialize settings...

"Ok, can I F***** play now?"

[some "in-game" dialog]

"come on...."

[another movie sequence. You start to lie down]

"I get it, they're pretty. Can I play now?"

You just realized your screen has been stationary for 10 seconds. It's finally time to play.

Estimated Time: Anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours.

Comparison: Game Boy

  1. I grab my Final Fantasy Legend
  2. put it in the obvious hole that the cartridge goes into.

  3. I turn it on and

  4. see a quick Nintendo logo,

  5. see my Start Screen.

  6. Press start.

  7. Aw an opening? Hey, I can make it go quicker by pressing A!

  8. Pick a character.

  9. A name? Let's make it short. "Ed". I get to play!!!!!

Estimate time: approx 40 seconds.

Comparison: Playstation (Final Fantasy VII)

  1. Press the Eject button to put a game. That's simple enough.

  2. Turn it on.

  3. You see a quick PlayStation logo.

  4. You then see a quick developer logo.

  5. Start menu.

  6. New game. Wow, go right into it.

Estimated Time: less than 2 minutes

Final Analysis

New consoles suck, and so do many game openings, introductions, and starter tutorials (or starting missions that are really sucky tutorials in hiding).

If I want to play a new game, one that I'm probably really hyped up to play, I don't want my excitement to turn into frustration and boredom. No wonder I have more Game boy color games than I do DS and PSP games combined; also no wonder I never get excited when my brother buys new games for his 360, even though I'm always happy when he gets a new one for his PS2. Let's get to playing please.

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    • Squimpleton profile image
      Author

      Squimpleton 9 years ago from New York

      Oh I didn't give up on the DS, I love my DS actually. Also yes, many games are longer, but that's actually irrelevant. I'm talking about when you first start a game - those precious few moments when you're all giddy after waiting what seems like forever. Even if the game is the greatest game in the world, you don't want that precious first impression ruined by over-waiting.

      For example: let's say a movie you've been dying to see goes on TV and it says it goes on at 8pm. So at exactly 7:55 you turn the channel on. However, before the movie starts some people go on for 30 minutes talking about how great the movie is, how wonderful the effects are, etc...Sure, it's interesting stuff. But that's stuff you want AFTER you've had that first-impression hype fulfilled.By the time the movie starts you're slightly annoyed and possibly slightly sleepy from waiting - yes, the great content will win you back, but those precious giddy moments were ruined.

      This is the same for games. I wish publishers and console makers would let us savor that first-glance hype.

    • spooon profile image

      spooon 9 years ago from Texas

      I'm all for next gen gaming. I can understand cut scenes being too long. It took nearly 30min to 1 hr to INSTALL metal gear solid 4 on the ps3.

      But when you compare the amount of game play you get with games like this running a HD setup and a 5.1 surround setup it's worth the time to install.

      The online patch for metal gear solid 4 is so long they actually have a bit torrent option to download and it still took longer than 1 hr to get.

      Don't give up on the DS. There are some fantastic games on it.

      For example is Puzzle Quest: Challenge of the Warlords for the DS.I wrote a review on it on another site awhile ago but it shows why this is a must with a system that has a stylus and the PSP or xbox can't emulate it. Not even the Wii due to response time.

      http://www1.epinions.com/content_366346931844

      Lawrence