Is Child of Light the way indies ought to be?

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#1 Posted by SolidGame_basic (16890 posts) -

Just got this for Vita and it's damn good! Fits the system well. But what I'm really getting at is that for $14.99 you get a full fledged game with great gameplay, story, and cool graphics. The Vita version also has the benefit of touch controls. Which got me thinking - shouldn't this be the standard now? My biggest gripe with indies before was that they didn't feel like real games. I know everyone loved Journey, but for $14.99, that was a rip off! 2-3 hours of just walking around in some artsy realm with some artsy music and apparently the reviewers cried at how beautiful that was. What do you think, SW? Have you made your way to the indie scene?

#2 Edited by jun_aka_pekto (15922 posts) -

My view of how indie games should be is illustrated by two examples: Aerofly FS and Hard Reset. Older examples would be Doom and Epic Pinball. Both of the older games initially released as shareware.

Add:

Oh.. And get this, I remember the full Doom game being hand-packaged and the box sealed with a piece of Scotch tape. I think the piece of tape had part of a fingerprint on it. ☺ Pretty humble beginnings.

#3 Posted by bbkkristian (14945 posts) -

Games are getting shorter. This I don't like one bit. One reason why I stray away from indies to save up for longer experiences.

#4 Posted by Basinboy (11060 posts) -

Games should have their own unique aim. Child of Light is awesome - but every game being similar would become just as stale.

#5 Posted by gameofthering (10138 posts) -

Does Half-Life count? Valve are an independent game developer are they not?

If not, then I'll pick Shadow Warrior and Hard Reset.

#6 Edited by cainetao11 (16915 posts) -

Just got this for Vita and it's damn good! Fits the system well. But what I'm really getting at is that for $14.99 you get a full fledged game with great gameplay, story, and cool graphics. The Vita version also has the benefit of touch controls. Which got me thinking - shouldn't this be the standard now? My biggest gripe with indies before was that they didn't feel like real games. I know everyone loved Journey, but for $14.99, that was a rip off! 2-3 hours of just walking around in some artsy realm with some artsy music and apparently the reviewers cried at how beautiful that was. What do you think, SW? Have you made your way to the indie scene?

It is pretty awesome right? I have it for Vita as well. Journey was a good game imo. Not what the reviewers thought but opinions are opinions.

#8 Edited by Vaasman (11267 posts) -

Child of Light isn't indie though, it's a Ubisoft game from a collection of Ubisoft studios. Plus it has some pretty shady business models hiding under the hood, at least on pc.

It's a good game but I don't really think it's what indie titles should try to shoot for.

#9 Edited by uninspiredcup (7869 posts) -

@bbkkristian said:

Games are getting shorter. This I don't like one bit. One reason why I stray away from indies to save up for longer experiences.

My friend, it seems very dependent on genre.

#10 Edited by Blabadon (25952 posts) -

It's not indie, let's not abuse the term

#11 Edited by cfisher2833 (1585 posts) -

@SolidGame_basic said:

Just got this for Vita and it's damn good! Fits the system well. But what I'm really getting at is that for $14.99 you get a full fledged game with great gameplay, story, and cool graphics. The Vita version also has the benefit of touch controls. Which got me thinking - shouldn't this be the standard now? My biggest gripe with indies before was that they didn't feel like real games. I know everyone loved Journey, but for $14.99, that was a rip off! 2-3 hours of just walking around in some artsy realm with some artsy music and apparently the reviewers cried at how beautiful that was. What do you think, SW? Have you made your way to the indie scene?

How is Child of Light an indie game? It was developed by an internal Ubisoft team and published by Ubisoft, probably the second largest publisher in the industry. And if you think indies don't "feel like real games," then it's your own fault for limiting yourself to the miniscule amount of indies that get released on consoles (which do tend to only get the small indie games--the only exception I can think of is Outlast). Games like Divinity Original Sin, Torchlight 2, Legend of Grimrock, and the aforementioned Outlast put "AAA" games to shame. Oh, and Shadow Warrior is releasing soon on consoles--that's an indie that occupies that weird space between big AAA (very few of them are actually big, with the majority barely lasting 12hrs if that) and small scale indies.

Really, you sound like you're looking for the AA games--the type of games/genres that aren't popular enough to get mass produced, but are a considerable step above the pixellated side-scrollers that are typical of the indie scene. Really, where you need to be is PC, as those sorts of games are all but dead on consoles.

#12 Posted by bbkkristian (14945 posts) -

@uninspiredcup: oh yes, very. My favorite genre of RPGs are supposed to be long fruitful games. But Even so, games like Transistor, despite being really fun, were still only 8 hours long.

But that's only on the console/handheld. I haven't given much attention to indie RPGs on PC.

#13 Posted by jg4xchamp (47431 posts) -

Games like Braid, Super Meat Boy, Spacechem, Mark of the Ninja, FTL, and more recently Xenonauts etc already exist that feel like "real games". I'm not going to get into "is the game indie or not", I think the larger thing you are saying is that the downloadable market should be expected to live up to a "child of light standard".

But, Child of Light is fucking shallow. The grandia combat is done basic to the point of going through the motions after a certain point, none of it is really difficult as you can flee every battle with no impunity, and the plot line is this cliche fairy tale plot that's meant to be grim and "subversive" except it isn't, which would be kind of cute, except the dialogue is all in rhyme. Which at first was a cool gimmick, but then it became obvious the writing is terrible. There are so many forced rhymes in the game ranging from them expecting you to pronounce a word a certain way to make it rhyme (this shit is stupid in rap music, why the hell wouldn't it be dumb in something emulating epic poems?), and in general they often pair words that emphasize a different syllable, but the ending is the same, so it must rhyme. It doesn't work that way.

If anything it's refreshing that Ubisoft can go from making stale, lifeless, boring triple A games with no vision ala Ass Creed 1 billion and Watchdogs, to something like Child of Light. Not a great game, but at least an attempt at trying to do something out of their wheel house. And in the case of Valiant Hearts, they did make something worth a spin.

As for those games being a standard for indie game? eh, not really. There are better indie games, and more accomplished ones that came before it. Not all indie games need a plot, the same way all games don't need a plot. Not all games need to be super long, and not all games need to be short. More to the point not all games need to be bought at full price. Price in the modern era is avoidable at this point to anyone with patience and willing to wait for a deal more appropriate to them.

Plus I'd rather play a Journey than a Child of Light, any day of the week.

#14 Posted by ninjapirate2000 (3014 posts) -

Not indieeeeee.

#15 Edited by wolverine4262 (19057 posts) -

You made a thread about indies where your example wasn't even an indie game...

#16 Posted by freedomfreak (39225 posts) -

Indie.

No.

#17 Posted by speedfreak48t5p (6976 posts) -

I rather not have every game turned into an RPG. Thanks.

#18 Edited by naz99 (1229 posts) -

Just got this for Vita and it's damn good! Fits the system well. But what I'm really getting at is that for $14.99 you get a full fledged game with great gameplay, story, and cool graphics. The Vita version also has the benefit of touch controls. Which got me thinking - shouldn't this be the standard now? My biggest gripe with indies before was that they didn't feel like real games. I know everyone loved Journey, but for $14.99, that was a rip off! 2-3 hours of just walking around in some artsy realm with some artsy music and apparently the reviewers cried at how beautiful that was. What do you think, SW? Have you made your way to the indie scene?

Most of us just like games and all sorts will do,from the "artsy" walk around for 2 hours and look at stuff to the balls to the wall action games,i love,own,and have played it all.

You just sound like someone imposing your views of what gaming should be onto others.

And the 2 games you mentioned child of light and Journey are not even indies so good job there :P

#19 Edited by SolidGame_basic (16890 posts) -

You suck TC

#20 Posted by SolidGame_basic (16890 posts) -

@naz99: http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Journey_(2012_video_game) indie

#21 Posted by AndyAlfredo (1387 posts) -

@SolidGame_basic: It says it was an indie game, even though on thatgamecompany's wiki article it states they were contracted by Sony to make the game. So what exactly is an indie developer?

#22 Posted by Lulu_Lulu (10323 posts) -

@naz99

"You just sound like someone imposing your views of what gaming should be onto others."

I find this notion Preposterous. Its true no one should impose their views on what gaming should be, but lately it seems like people are using this argument just to make room for the things they like which in some cases is actually worse. There are many things that just arent game related yet are part of gaming just because they are popular or whatever.

#23 Posted by Lulu_Lulu (10323 posts) -

@AndyAlfredo

This distinction is easier to identify on the PC since its an Open Platform and simple to self publish on.

well yeah I guess thats what Indie is... Self publishing, which I doubt Journey and CoL did.

#24 Posted by cfisher2833 (1585 posts) -

Games like Braid, Super Meat Boy, Spacechem, Mark of the Ninja, FTL, and more recently Xenonauts etc already exist that feel like "real games". I'm not going to get into "is the game indie or not", I think the larger thing you are saying is that the downloadable market should be expected to live up to a "child of light standard".

But, Child of Light is fucking shallow. The grandia combat is done basic to the point of going through the motions after a certain point, none of it is really difficult as you can flee every battle with no impunity, and the plot line is this cliche fairy tale plot that's meant to be grim and "subversive" except it isn't, which would be kind of cute, except the dialogue is all in rhyme. Which at first was a cool gimmick, but then it became obvious the writing is terrible. There are so many forced rhymes in the game ranging from them expecting you to pronounce a word a certain way to make it rhyme (this shit is stupid in rap music, why the hell wouldn't it be dumb in something emulating epic poems?), and in general they often pair words that emphasize a different syllable, but the ending is the same, so it must rhyme. It doesn't work that way.

If anything it's refreshing that Ubisoft can go from making stale, lifeless, boring triple A games with no vision ala Ass Creed 1 billion and Watchdogs, to something like Child of Light. Not a great game, but at least an attempt at trying to do something out of their wheel house. And in the case of Valiant Hearts, they did make something worth a spin.

As for those games being a standard for indie game? eh, not really. There are better indie games, and more accomplished ones that came before it. Not all indie games need a plot, the same way all games don't need a plot. Not all games need to be super long, and not all games need to be short. More to the point not all games need to be bought at full price. Price in the modern era is avoidable at this point to anyone with patience and willing to wait for a deal more appropriate to them.

Plus I'd rather play a Journey than a Child of Light, any day of the week.

Tell me about it. I was all excited for Child of Light at first, but after watching let's plays and the "WTF is" of it....and wow, is it bad. I mean, typically a game's writing doesn't turn me off completely from the game, but my god was it horrendous, especially the lines the characters say as you're just running around the environment. Utterly horrendous writing. And it's a shame too, as the story itself is not remotely bad--when they speak in prose at the beginning of the game, it's actually quite good. But the rhyming is just soooo forced; it sounds terrible.

#25 Posted by lostrib (34682 posts) -
#26 Posted by parkurtommo (26523 posts) -

only 8 hours long.

That is not short by today's standards. Be it indie or not. You can blame Call of Duty for that.

#27 Posted by parkurtommo (26523 posts) -

Plus I'd rather play a Journey than a Child of Light, any day of the week.

I'd rather play Journey than any game, any day of the week. :P

Hyperbole

#28 Posted by jg4xchamp (47431 posts) -

@jg4xchamp said:

Plus I'd rather play a Journey than a Child of Light, any day of the week.

I'd rather play Journey than any game, any day of the week. :P

Hyperbole

If a game could match that same feeling of wonder, uniqueness, and all that jazz, yeah, but not exactly Journey. Maybe one with more complex gameplay. ;p

But yeah Journey is dope.

#29 Posted by bbkkristian (14945 posts) -

@parkurtommo: I DONT WANT TO LIVE ON THIS PLANET ANYMORE.

IF YOU NEED ME ILL BE READING PICK-YOUR-OWN-ADVENTURE BOOKS IN THE CORNER. Hmph. >:(

#30 Posted by parkurtommo (26523 posts) -

@parkurtommo said:

@jg4xchamp said:

Plus I'd rather play a Journey than a Child of Light, any day of the week.

I'd rather play Journey than any game, any day of the week. :P

Hyperbole

If a game could match that same feeling of wonder, uniqueness, and all that jazz, yeah, but not exactly Journey. Maybe one with more complex gameplay. ;p

But yeah Journey is dope.

I think No Man's Sky might come close, if they don't fuck it up.

#31 Edited by PapaTrop (506 posts) -

I'd like all games to just simply have devs behind them with integrity, and a drive to make games beyond simply making money.

All areas of the industry are abused/exploited by clones and rehashes, but indie games tend to be heavily dominated by things like 2D puzzle/platformers, simple gimmick games, Minecraft-esque games, etc. The latest craze seems to be coming up with something "for teh lulz" and attaching the SIMULATOR moniker to it.

The easiest way for any indie dev to make money is to simply clone other ideas, and hope enough suckers buy their products. It's why within hours of something becoming popular on iOS or Android you'll see other clones pop up. There's an entire industry devoted to selling "game engines for phones" that allow just about anyone the ability to adjust settings for simple gameplay mechanics like jumping and shooting. All you need to do is pay a hundred or so dollars for the license, draw some sprites up in GIMP, and within a few weeks you'll be able to flood the stores with any old poopy sewer diarrhea you want.

It's really sad. Luckily most games developed that way don't make that much money, but every so often one does breaks through, and gets 15 minutes of fame, and the developer laughs all the way to the bank.

#32 Posted by getyeryayasout (7181 posts) -

@Blabadon said:

It's not indie, let's not abuse the term

This. Ubi no Indie.

#33 Posted by jg4xchamp (47431 posts) -

@jg4xchamp said:

If a game could match that same feeling of wonder, uniqueness, and all that jazz, yeah, but not exactly Journey. Maybe one with more complex gameplay. ;p

But yeah Journey is dope.

I think No Man's Sky might come close, if they don't fuck it up.

If they can execute it on a social level it should be dope.

I think people want it to be this action thing, or this thing with objectives. But I look at it like Fez. In that the core game isn't what makes it interesting. It's when you're playing the game with millions of people via forums and shit. Sharing hey "so I found this shit, what did you find, lets compare notes?", and all that jazz. If that game can live up to that type of stuff it could be really neat on the premise that it should have limitless potential for that type of stuff. Where as Fez once the world cracked the code, the answers were obvious, and comparing notes were a non factor. So you're left with this code breaking puzzle game that isn't all that special on a core game mechanics level.

Too long; didn't read: Yeah I hope they deliver on No Man's Sky.

#34 Posted by foxhound_fox (87754 posts) -

Star Citizen is an indie game.

#35 Posted by SolidGame_basic (16890 posts) -

if anyone actually read the OP you would know exactly what I'm talking about. it's funny, because I'm forced to write a fleshed out OP so not to get locked but people don't read it anyway. mods should start penalizing for terrible replies.

#36 Posted by getyeryayasout (7181 posts) -
#37 Posted by lostrib (34682 posts) -

if anyone actually read the OP you would know exactly what I'm talking about. it's funny, because I'm forced to write a fleshed out OP so not to get locked but people don't read it anyway. mods should start penalizing for terrible replies.

what are you crying about now?

#38 Posted by Vaasman (11267 posts) -

if anyone actually read the OP you would know exactly what I'm talking about. it's funny, because I'm forced to write a fleshed out OP so not to get locked but people don't read it anyway. mods should start penalizing for terrible replies.

Ok, lets start by penalizing your own terrible replies to your own thread.

#39 Posted by jg4xchamp (47431 posts) -

@jg4xchamp said:

Games like Braid, Super Meat Boy, Spacechem, Mark of the Ninja, FTL, and more recently Xenonauts etc already exist that feel like "real games". I'm not going to get into "is the game indie or not", I think the larger thing you are saying is that the downloadable market should be expected to live up to a "child of light standard".

But, Child of Light is fucking shallow. The grandia combat is done basic to the point of going through the motions after a certain point, none of it is really difficult as you can flee every battle with no impunity, and the plot line is this cliche fairy tale plot that's meant to be grim and "subversive" except it isn't, which would be kind of cute, except the dialogue is all in rhyme. Which at first was a cool gimmick, but then it became obvious the writing is terrible. There are so many forced rhymes in the game ranging from them expecting you to pronounce a word a certain way to make it rhyme (this shit is stupid in rap music, why the hell wouldn't it be dumb in something emulating epic poems?), and in general they often pair words that emphasize a different syllable, but the ending is the same, so it must rhyme. It doesn't work that way.

If anything it's refreshing that Ubisoft can go from making stale, lifeless, boring triple A games with no vision ala Ass Creed 1 billion and Watchdogs, to something like Child of Light. Not a great game, but at least an attempt at trying to do something out of their wheel house. And in the case of Valiant Hearts, they did make something worth a spin.

As for those games being a standard for indie game? eh, not really. There are better indie games, and more accomplished ones that came before it. Not all indie games need a plot, the same way all games don't need a plot. Not all games need to be super long, and not all games need to be short. More to the point not all games need to be bought at full price. Price in the modern era is avoidable at this point to anyone with patience and willing to wait for a deal more appropriate to them.

Plus I'd rather play a Journey than a Child of Light, any day of the week.

Tell me about it. I was all excited for Child of Light at first, but after watching let's plays and the "WTF is" of it....and wow, is it bad. I mean, typically a game's writing doesn't turn me off completely from the game, but my god was it horrendous, especially the lines the characters say as you're just running around the environment. Utterly horrendous writing. And it's a shame too, as the story itself is not remotely bad--when they speak in prose at the beginning of the game, it's actually quite good. But the rhyming is just soooo forced; it sounds terrible.

Yeah, usually writing is not something I put so much stock into. Because, well frankly, LOLVIDEOGAMEWRITING, but when you need to convey so much via rhyme it needs to be good. And that shit simply isn't for the plot they want to convey.

#40 Posted by DJ-Lafleur (34144 posts) -

I don't know. There are worse games you could take inspiration from...

#41 Posted by Bigboi500 (29373 posts) -

Who cares if it's indie or not? It's a fantastic game either way. Stop over-analyzing games and trying to classify them.

#42 Posted by Micropixel (865 posts) -

Indies should continue to step outside the box with fresh ideas and make games the way they feel they should be (without be hampered by the corporate cookie-cutter machine).

#43 Posted by seanmcloughlin (38214 posts) -

People don't even know what an Indie game actually is then I see

Aside from that it's cool I guess. I got bored of it though, too easy and the story/writing became annoying

#44 Posted by geniobastardo (1294 posts) -

Who cares if it's indie or not? It's a fantastic game either way. Stop over-analyzing games and trying to classify them.

wow a sensible post^ finally. Take a look at it guys!

#45 Posted by cfisher2833 (1585 posts) -

@Bigboi500 said:

Who cares if it's indie or not? It's a fantastic game either way. Stop over-analyzing games and trying to classify them.

wow a sensible post^ finally. Take a look at it guys!

When the OP is using Child of Light is an example of an indie game done right, I think it's pretty relevant to mention how the game isn't in fact an indie, but was instead developed AND published by one of the three largest fucking game publishers in the industry. Had he actually used an example of a real indie game with a lot of polish like Divinity OS or Outlast, that'd be one thing.

#46 Posted by geniobastardo (1294 posts) -

@geniobastardo said:

@Bigboi500 said:

Who cares if it's indie or not? It's a fantastic game either way. Stop over-analyzing games and trying to classify them.

wow a sensible post^ finally. Take a look at it guys!

When the OP is using Child of Light is an example of an indie game done right, I think it's pretty relevant to mention how the game isn't in fact an indie, but was instead developed AND published by one of the three largest fucking game publishers in the industry. Had he actually used an example of a real indie game with a lot of polish like Divinity OS or Outlast, that'd be one thing.

but still does it matter if it's an indie or not?? NO. It's a great game. That's one and the other thing.

#47 Edited by SolidGame_basic (16890 posts) -

@geniobastardo said:

@cfisher2833 said:

@geniobastardo said:

@Bigboi500 said:

Who cares if it's indie or not? It's a fantastic game either way. Stop over-analyzing games and trying to classify them.

wow a sensible post^ finally. Take a look at it guys!

When the OP is using Child of Light is an example of an indie game done right, I think it's pretty relevant to mention how the game isn't in fact an indie, but was instead developed AND published by one of the three largest fucking game publishers in the industry. Had he actually used an example of a real indie game with a lot of polish like Divinity OS or Outlast, that'd be one thing.

but still does it matter if it's an indie or not?? NO. It's a great game. That's one and the other thing.

honestly I was just happy that I was able to get a great game for that price point and thought that could be the future for indies. it's really more about production value and price than anything else.

#48 Posted by santoron (7692 posts) -

If by "The way indies ought to be" you mean made by mega publishers with thousands of employees and a penchant for cranking out yearly entries of every successful game they make, then yes.

Yes they should.

#49 Edited by lawlessx (46562 posts) -

@cfisher2833 said:

@geniobastardo said:

@Bigboi500 said:

Who cares if it's indie or not? It's a fantastic game either way. Stop over-analyzing games and trying to classify them.

wow a sensible post^ finally. Take a look at it guys!

When the OP is using Child of Light is an example of an indie game done right, I think it's pretty relevant to mention how the game isn't in fact an indie, but was instead developed AND published by one of the three largest fucking game publishers in the industry. Had he actually used an example of a real indie game with a lot of polish like Divinity OS or Outlast, that'd be one thing.

but still does it matter if it's an indie or not?? NO. It's a great game. That's one and the other thing.

true,but the TC should make sure he brings up an actual indie title if he wants to discuss the state of indie gaming.

#50 Edited by cfisher2833 (1585 posts) -

@SolidGame_basic said:

@geniobastardo said:

@cfisher2833 said:

@geniobastardo said:

@Bigboi500 said:

Who cares if it's indie or not? It's a fantastic game either way. Stop over-analyzing games and trying to classify them.

wow a sensible post^ finally. Take a look at it guys!

When the OP is using Child of Light is an example of an indie game done right, I think it's pretty relevant to mention how the game isn't in fact an indie, but was instead developed AND published by one of the three largest fucking game publishers in the industry. Had he actually used an example of a real indie game with a lot of polish like Divinity OS or Outlast, that'd be one thing.

but still does it matter if it's an indie or not?? NO. It's a great game. That's one and the other thing.

honestly I was just happy that I was able to get a great game for that price point and thought that could be the future for indies. it's really more about production value and price than anything else.

I get where you're coming from, but at the same time, I just don't see how Child of Light was all that unique. It wasn't a particularly long game from what I've heard (like 10-12hrs?); presentation-wise it wasn't all that much different than games made by Klei or Runic (all games featured voice acted cutscenes); and graphically, it was far more simple than a game like Shadow Warrior or Divinity OS. You're presenting Child of Light as if it was an anomaly within the indie scene, boasting of considerably more polish than the likes of other indie games--a game which all other indies should aspire to. And I just don't see that as the case. The indie scene has already advanced far beyond the level of something like Child of Light, with engines like Unity allowing for far more complex, intricate games like The Forest.

If you're looking for indie games that fall into this category, first off, I'd recommend moving to PC as PC is where most of these type of games have migrated to, and secondly check out these games.

Divinity Original Sin: http://store.steampowered.com/app/230230/ (MC: 87)

The Forest: http://store.steampowered.com/app/242760/

Rise of the Triad http://store.steampowered.com/app/217140/?featured_app=1 (80% off atm--$3)

Shadow Warrior http://store.steampowered.com/app/233130/ (Coming to PS4/XB1 soon)

Chivalry Medieval Warfare http://store.steampowered.com/app/219640/

Torchlight 2 http://store.steampowered.com/app/200710/

Legend of Grimrock http://store.steampowered.com/app/207170/

Natural Selection 2 http://store.steampowered.com/app/4920/