Mass Effect 2 is one of my favorite games of all time. When I got married last year I gave copies of it to my groomsmen. I’ve beaten the game five times, and have completed a fresh “Insanity Run”. I would probably get an N7 tramp stamp and not give a shit what people thought about me. Needless to say any new bit of Mass Effect content is going to make me a very, very happy man.
I’ve been playing first person shooters since the early days of Counter-Strike and the original Team Fortress and can honestly say that few gaming experiences are as fun as a good FPS. While the genre has changed a lot over the years, one thing remains the same, FPS games typically boast incredible competition from some of the best gamers on the plant. In recent years, companies such as DICE and Infinity Ward have made the FPS genre the most lucrative genre in gaming, as well as the most realistic and immersive. But does repetition of a “perfect” formula start to make the formula less-than perfect?
At what point will gamers realize that they’ve already played this game before? Are we, as consumers, willing to spend $60 a year for practically the same game?
While I’ve played and enjoyed every single Call of Duty game, I believe that the realistic War-FPS genre took a hit when Infinity Ward went to blows with Activision late last year (old news but West and Zampella of Infinity Ward left and formed Respawn with many IW folks). While Treyarch managed to deliver a pretty solid product in Call of Duty: Black Ops, there was little change in the proven multiplayer formula. Is there anything wrong with spitting out the same product year after year with slight alterations? (Apparently you all don’t think so considering Madden has been doing it for years). At what point will gamers realize that they’ve already played this game before? Are we, as consumers, willing to spend $60 a year for practically the exact same game?
The Future of The Genre:
With Infinity Ward a shell of its former self, and Bungie no longer working on Halo, the FPS genre is at a bit of a crossroads. I for one would love to see a truly innovative FPS shooter that is filled with incredible characters and story as well as being gritty and immersive. Shooting things and being shot at is fine and all, but if those bullets have the capacity to have an emotional impact rather than just a physical one, why not let them? If I were a gambling man I would put all my chips on Respawn: Entertainment who are working in total secrecy on a yet-to-be announced (presumably) FPS game. With their currently level of freedom and beyond-capable staff I think it’s up to them to bail us out of this groundhog day-like cycle of FPS repetition. Wake me up when their game is out okay?