Thoughts on Episodic gaming?

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#1 Edited by biggest_loser (24056 posts) -

What do you think the state of Episodic gaming is?

Some people who bought Telltale's Wolf Among Us had to wait nearly 4 months for a single, short episode.

I personally think its the distribution model that should be scrapped.

I see no joy in playing a game for 2 hours and then having to wait another two or three months for the next part to be released.

Telltale "lead" this but they have a lot on their plate. Who is to say that these massive delays won't happen again at some point?

I'd rather buy the five episodes together once they're all finished.

That said, one thing I don't understand is if its meant to be episodic, how come we can't buy episodes individually instead of paying $25 all at once?

Thoughts?

#2 Edited by with_teeth26 (6183 posts) -

Most people I know wait for the entire season of Telltale game releases to come out before buying them, so I'm not sure why they are even bothering with the format. I think it could work if an episode was released like once a month or at even shorter intervals, but when you are waiting 2+ months its easy to forget what is happening and lose interest in the story.

#3 Edited by JigglyWiggly_ (23602 posts) -

Dumb, they'll want to keep making major changes and then they break something... and then they get into this weird state where they don't feel their new episode stacks up to the rest of the market.

#4 Posted by JangoWuzHere (16545 posts) -

It's dumb

Instead of making a seamless enjoyable experience, we have to put up with this episodic crap. Telltale isn't confident enough in its story and game to release it all at once. The Wolf Among Us Episode 2 was pretty disappointing for me. It ended just when it was getting good. People talk big about quality over length, but I can't agree with those people at all in this case. I don't know if they are going through development hell over there, but I know that I'M not happy with the results so far. It also feels like they are making this story up as they go along, which is not a good way to make any story.

It also seems pretty immoral to have sales or price reductions for a game that isn't fully complete yet. Seems like they are sort of giving the shaft to the fans who bought it early.

#5 Posted by KHAndAnime (13867 posts) -

Doesn't really make any difference to me - I just wait until all the episodes are complete and then I buy them. They're the ones making the games - I trust they have good reasons for using this model.

#6 Posted by JangoWuzHere (16545 posts) -

Episodic gaming will only work if the releases are consistent and exact. Telltale isn't sure when their episodes will be done, so the episodic format is pointless.

#7 Posted by lawlessx (46765 posts) -

If the developers have a set date on when the eps will be released i dont think it's a big deal.

but it looks bad if fans are asking when is the next eps and the devs can't give a answer

#8 Edited by Croag821 (2323 posts) -

I'm not a huge fan of buying at the beginning and waiting for each episode. For the walking dead game I just waited until all the episodes were out for the season and bought it then, that's what I plan to do with the wolf among us.

That being said I don't really have a problem with them doing that, it allows people who want to play each episode ASAP to do it, and people like me to wait, there's not really a downside IMO.

#9 Posted by Korvus (3886 posts) -

Got the episodes of the first season of TWD the same day they came out. Played once as the good guy, played again as the self-serving guy...waited until next episode...it sucks...now I'm just waiting for the whole season to come out before I even touch it; same for TWAU.

#10 Posted by nutcrackr (12628 posts) -

I think that ship has well and truly sailed. Even telltale looks to be screwing up their flawless record.

However, many crowdfunding games are breaking their games into "episodes" just to get enough money to fund the second part.

#11 Posted by Planeforger (15790 posts) -

@JangoWuzHere said:

Telltale isn't confident enough in its story and game to release it all at once.

It's kind of the other way around, actually. Telltale's entire company is structured around making episodic series - they've been doing it since...what, 2005? - so obviously they're just going to keep doing what their development teams have been set up to do, and what has worked very well for them in the past.

The only time they broke tradition and released a full series at once was Jurassic Park, which also happened to be the series they were *least* confident about.

Anyway, I've enjoyed Telltale's model for many years now. There have been many examples over the past eight years of Telltale improving their series through player feedback, and many of their episodes are written to make the most of the month (or more) gap, so I definitely think that playing their series month-by-month is the best way to enjoy their games.

#12 Posted by -wildflower- (2866 posts) -

I understand why smaller companies sometimes choose to release their games in episodes (a steady influx of cash is probably vital to their survival). With that said, other than the few early-access games I've supported, I usually wait for the "whole game" to be released before buying it. I'm way too scatter-brained and busy to remember what happened in a game I played two months ago.

#13 Posted by harry_james_pot (10890 posts) -

I don't really mind it. It sucks that we had to wait this much for episode 2 of The Wolf Among us, but I had lots of other stuff to play so it was ok.

#14 Edited by FelipeInside (25658 posts) -

I think it's great for adventures games, it makes it like a TV Show where you have to wait for the next episode to come out.

#15 Posted by JangoWuzHere (16545 posts) -

@FelipeInside said:

I think it's great for adventures games, it makes it like a TV Show where you have to wait for the next episode to come out.

Feels nothing like a TV show.

You don't wait 2-4 months for a single episode for a TV show. TV is a dying format as well, so following it at this point is kind of crazy.

#16 Edited by Cwagmire21 (5896 posts) -

I hate it. I always wait for all the episodes to be released before buying.

#17 Posted by SEANMCAD (5464 posts) -

I appreciate story telling games but I personally do not care for them. I am of the mindset that if I want a good story I will read a book or some TV series on netflix.

#18 Edited by DefconRave (657 posts) -

Sucks b*lls, The wolf among us ep 2 was even shorter than ep 1 and took so long to release? joke.

Why can't they concentrate on completing 1 project instead of trying to juggle multiple projects at once. They clearly lack the manpower to do so but $$$$ is more important to them than customer satisfaction I guess.

And TV format is an episode every week not 4 months plus netflix just releases all eps at once so people can marathon the entire season at their leisure.

#19 Posted by Jimmy_Russell (812 posts) -

I don't buy a car in separate parts, why would I buy a video game that is not sold as a complete package?

#20 Posted by FelipeInside (25658 posts) -

@JangoWuzHere said:

@FelipeInside said:

I think it's great for adventures games, it makes it like a TV Show where you have to wait for the next episode to come out.

Feels nothing like a TV show.

You don't wait 2-4 months for a single episode for a TV show. TV is a dying format as well, so following it at this point is kind of crazy.

Between mid seasons you do.

Anyway, I'm not as impatient as you, I can easily maintain myself entertained until I wait for another show or game episode.

And TV a dying format, lol... make another joke.

#21 Edited by JangoWuzHere (16545 posts) -

@FelipeInside:

@FelipeInside said:

@JangoWuzHere said:

@FelipeInside said:

I think it's great for adventures games, it makes it like a TV Show where you have to wait for the next episode to come out.

Feels nothing like a TV show.

You don't wait 2-4 months for a single episode for a TV show. TV is a dying format as well, so following it at this point is kind of crazy.

Between mid seasons you do.

Anyway, I'm not as impatient as you, I can easily maintain myself entertained until I wait for another show or game episode.

And TV a dying format, lol... make another joke.

It's not about keeping me entertained, it's about making me actually care. Episode one was awesome, but having to wait 4 months for a 1 hour episode 2 is not awesome. I've lost a lot of excitment over the months having to wait for this episode. I've also forgotten a bit of the story, and I have little interest in playing episode 1 again just because Telltale took so long.

You must be living under a rock to not see TV dying.

Internet video, Netflix, streaming boxes, and apple's digital services are all slowly dwindling down television. TV providers haven't been gaining subscribers, they are losing them each and every year. The only major draw that TV providers have is live sports. Why do you think the Olympics can only be seen live with a TV subscription in America? NBC wants to have that tight grip on the event so it can't be seen through more modern devices.

#22 Posted by PredatorRules (8113 posts) -

I'll wait to buy the whole bundle

#23 Posted by FelipeInside (25658 posts) -

@JangoWuzHere said:

You must be living under a rock to not see TV dying.

Internet video, Netflix, streaming boxes, and apple's digital services are all slowly dwindling down television. TV providers haven't been gaining subscribers, they are losing them each and every year. The only major draw that TV providers have is live sports. Why do you think the Olympics can only be seen live with a TV subscription in America? NBC wants to have that tight grip on the event so it can't be seen through more modern devices.

Let me guess, you live in the US?

#24 Posted by JangoWuzHere (16545 posts) -

@FelipeInside said:

@JangoWuzHere said:

You must be living under a rock to not see TV dying.

Internet video, Netflix, streaming boxes, and apple's digital services are all slowly dwindling down television. TV providers haven't been gaining subscribers, they are losing them each and every year. The only major draw that TV providers have is live sports. Why do you think the Olympics can only be seen live with a TV subscription in America? NBC wants to have that tight grip on the event so it can't be seen through more modern devices.

Let me guess, you live in the US?

Yes, but I'm not just talking about the US.

#25 Posted by FelipeInside (25658 posts) -

@JangoWuzHere said:

@FelipeInside said:

@JangoWuzHere said:

You must be living under a rock to not see TV dying.

Internet video, Netflix, streaming boxes, and apple's digital services are all slowly dwindling down television. TV providers haven't been gaining subscribers, they are losing them each and every year. The only major draw that TV providers have is live sports. Why do you think the Olympics can only be seen live with a TV subscription in America? NBC wants to have that tight grip on the event so it can't be seen through more modern devices.

Let me guess, you live in the US?

Yes, but I'm not just talking about the US.

The majority of the world doesn't have fast internet for the likes of Netflix, heck.... Netfix isn't even available in most countries.

I agree the TV subscription services are losing subscribers, but TV in itself isn't dying by any means.

#27 Edited by vfibsux (4205 posts) -

@FelipeInside said:

I think it's great for adventures games, it makes it like a TV Show where you have to wait for the next episode to come out.

Let's be consistent here though Felipe, you don't believe in the early access trend and I am with you on that.....what is the difference here? You are paying full price for an unfinished product, you will only receive 1/5th or so of the game every few months.

#28 Edited by harry_james_pot (10890 posts) -

@DefconRave said:

Sucks b*lls, The wolf among us ep 2 was even shorter than ep 1 and took so long to release? joke.

Why can't they concentrate on completing 1 project instead of trying to juggle multiple projects at once. They clearly lack the manpower to do so but $$$$ is more important to them than customer satisfaction I guess.

And TV format is an episode every week not 4 months plus netflix just releases all eps at once so people can marathon the entire season at their leisure.

They didn't exactly spend all this time making episode 2. They ran into problems, and from what I've seen it seems they had to re-write the story or something.

#29 Posted by FelipeInside (25658 posts) -

@vfibsux said:

@FelipeInside said:

I think it's great for adventures games, it makes it like a TV Show where you have to wait for the next episode to come out.

Let's be consistent here though Felipe, you don't believe in the early access trend and I am with you on that.....what is the difference here? You are paying full price for an unfinished product, you will only receive 1/5th or so of the game every few months.

To me there is a difference because even though you are getting a first episode, it's the FINAL product, just cut up in sections.

I don't think it would work with games like RPGs and FPSs, but with something like an adventure game it does because normally they are quick games for a few hours. And remember they allow you to buy the whole product and download it as a whole too.

#30 Edited by vfibsux (4205 posts) -

@FelipeInside said:

@vfibsux said:

@FelipeInside said:

I think it's great for adventures games, it makes it like a TV Show where you have to wait for the next episode to come out.

Let's be consistent here though Felipe, you don't believe in the early access trend and I am with you on that.....what is the difference here? You are paying full price for an unfinished product, you will only receive 1/5th or so of the game every few months.

To me there is a difference because even though you are getting a first episode, it's the FINAL product, just cut up in sections.

I don't think it would work with games like RPGs and FPSs, but with something like an adventure game it does because normally they are quick games for a few hours. And remember they allow you to buy the whole product and download it as a whole too.

You can't NOT compare it to other genres though because it is comparable. So what if a big name FPS single player portion only came with the first few levels and put it all in "episode" or chapter format? Would you consider that a final product just because those few levels were finished? Back in the day we used to call that a demo lol.

And I realize you can wait until every episode is done and get it all at once, but that is not what I am talking about here. I see no difference here between this and early release, you are paying for an unfinished product and the company is giving you an IOU to deliver the rest of it at a time of their choosing.

#31 Posted by FelipeInside (25658 posts) -

@vfibsux said:

@FelipeInside said:

@vfibsux said:

@FelipeInside said:

I think it's great for adventures games, it makes it like a TV Show where you have to wait for the next episode to come out.

Let's be consistent here though Felipe, you don't believe in the early access trend and I am with you on that.....what is the difference here? You are paying full price for an unfinished product, you will only receive 1/5th or so of the game every few months.

To me there is a difference because even though you are getting a first episode, it's the FINAL product, just cut up in sections.

I don't think it would work with games like RPGs and FPSs, but with something like an adventure game it does because normally they are quick games for a few hours. And remember they allow you to buy the whole product and download it as a whole too.

You can't NOT compare it to other genres though because it is comparable. So what if a big name FPS single player portion only came with the first few levels and put it all in "episode" or chapter format? Would you consider that a final product just because those few levels were finished? Back in the day we used to call that a demo lol.

And I realize you can wait until every episode is done and get it all at once, but that is not what I am talking about here. I see no difference here between this and early release, you are paying for an unfinished product and the company is giving you an IOU to deliver the rest of it at a time of their choosing.

Well, that's why I said it wouldn't work with FPS games, although if you look at COD and BF, they bring out "maps" later on as DLC so you can look at that as part of the game too, lol.

I just think Episodic gaming in an adventure game is fine because the developer already has the whole game planned out, releases the engine in it's final state, and the game comes across (to me) as a TV show which I can play in short busts without dedicating too much time and still be able to play my other games. (as well as release dates, although Telltale are messing it up lately)

Early Access the dev sometimes doesn't know when the game will be finished, the engine is not in it's final stage, doesn't even know IF the game will be finished etc, full of bugs and it's basically an alpha etc.