What graphical style do you like more - cartoony or realistic?

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SolidGame_basic

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Poll What graphical style do you like more - cartoony or realistic? (89 votes)

Cartoony 49%
Realistic 51%

I guess I like realistic more, but cartoony is ok. When I think of cartoony, I think of games like Fortnite or Overwatch. When I think of realistic, I think of DMC V, which is cooler. So realistic for me. You, SW?

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npiet1

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#1 npiet1
Member since 2018 • 3576 Posts

A game for pure fun, cartoonish. But any other realistic.

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onesiphorus

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#2 onesiphorus
Member since 2014 • 4089 Posts

It would be realitic as long as the game is done professionally.

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MirkoS77

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#3 MirkoS77  Online
Member since 2011 • 16272 Posts

That depends on the game.

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Archangel3371

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#4 Archangel3371
Member since 2004 • 35572 Posts

I enjoy them both depending on the game and source material. However most of my all time favourite games are ones such as:

- Chrono Trigger

- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Arcade Game and Turtles in Time

- Dragon Quest VIII

- Final Fantasy VI

- Super Mario games

- The Legend of Zelda games

So I guess you could say that in general my preferences lean towards cartoon style.

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adsparky

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#5 adsparky
Member since 2006 • 2083 Posts

I can appreciate the technology behind the realistic style, but they tend to age really bad, meanwhile a cartoony style looks great almost all the time.

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VFighter

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#6 VFighter  Online
Member since 2016 • 9112 Posts

@onesiphorus: That doesnt make any sense what so ever.

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uninspiredcup

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#7 uninspiredcup
Member since 2013 • 46421 Posts

...

!

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tocool340

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#8 tocool340
Member since 2004 • 21536 Posts

Blend of both, though leaning more toward the realistic side of the spectrum. Sort of like the Metroid Prime series or Twilight Princess (Or that Zelda Wii U tech demo)....

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R4gn4r0k

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#9 R4gn4r0k
Member since 2004 • 37884 Posts

Both

Realistic: Battlefield series, Metro series

Cartoony: Void Bastards, Age of Empires Online, Zelda: Wind Waker

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AJStyles

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#10  Edited By AJStyles
Member since 2018 • 1430 Posts

Realistic is always better.

Anyone can make a cartoon game with no textures or no effort like fortnite or Nintendo’s games.

Cartoons/cel shading and the like scream low budget and lazy. The games are always worse.

Realistic games tend to have higher budgets and are of overall higher quality.

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Yams1980

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#11  Edited By Yams1980
Member since 2006 • 3828 Posts

Somewhere inbetween the two. I don't want completely realistic, but not too cartoonish like borderlands with the annoying cell shading.

I lean more to cartoonish though. I actually liked the Sims 4 style a bit more compared to Sims 3, more expressive but edging a bit more cartoonish but not in a stupid way like borderlands with cell shading trash.

I think Tomb raider needs to be rebooted and look more like xbox 360 look with the Tombraider Underworld/Legend games. Loved the way things looked in those games, i hate most of the newer tombraiders, they've tried too hard to make it look realistic and Lara is a depressed disaster in those games and not an easy going cleavage monster like in all the older ones.

And look at Double Fine with their games, they have a nice style since the Day of the tentacle/Monkey Island days all the way up to Psychonauts, i really like the look of each game they make.

As for fighting games, not really a fan of the over cartoonish look of the newer Street Fighter games, I prefer more Soul Calibur or Dead Or Alive look, which is still cartoonish but looks realistic as well.

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VFighter

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#12 VFighter  Online
Member since 2016 • 9112 Posts

@ajstyles: Bullshit, complete bullshit.

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Litchie

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#13 Litchie
Member since 2003 • 28504 Posts

Depends on the game.

I love realistic graphics, but have a softer spot for cool artstyles.

I love how Sekiro looks, which is quite realistic.
I love how Wind Waker looks, which is very cartoony.
I love how Breath of the Wild looks, which is a blend of both.

I usually prefer artstyle over realism. Sekiro isn't the most realistic looking game I've played, but hot diggedy damn it's beautiful. Those japanese people knows how to create game worlds..

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mrbojangles25

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#14 mrbojangles25
Member since 2005 • 50616 Posts

Honestly it depends on the capabilities of the developer.

There are developers that can take the CryEngine and make it look like absolute garbage. Meanwhile, there are modders that can take the 15-year old Source engine and make it look surprisingly relevant.

Likewise, smaller studios might go for a cel-shaded or cartoonish aesthetic because they don't have millions to dump on a fancy game engine license, but they put so much effort into it--hand-crafting textures, rending models artistically, and so forth--that it goes beyond realism into something so much better. It goes into art territory.

Context is also important. I wouldn't want to play a realistic flight sim if it had cartoonish visuals; on the flipside, I could totally get down playing an arcadey space-sim if it had cartoonish art direction.

@vfighter said:

@ajstyles: Bullshit, complete bullshit.

That's all the guys says. @ajstyles's mouth opens, bullshit spills out.

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Litchie

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#15 Litchie
Member since 2003 • 28504 Posts
@R4gn4r0k said:

Void Bastards

Hey, wtf is that?! Looks awesome. *heads to youtube

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deactivated-6092a2d005fba

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#16 deactivated-6092a2d005fba
Member since 2015 • 22663 Posts

I don't have a favourite graphic style per say, if the game is fun for me graphical style doesn't matter.

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R4gn4r0k

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#18 R4gn4r0k
Member since 2004 • 37884 Posts
@Litchie said:
@R4gn4r0k said:

Void Bastards

Hey, wtf is that?! Looks awesome. *heads to youtube

Gameinformer did a video on that recently.

Looks like a mix between XIII and System Shock.

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xantufrog

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#19 xantufrog  Moderator  Online
Member since 2013 • 16638 Posts

I wish I didn't have to pick, because I don't have a strong preference. That being said, I guess jazzy graphics are, on balance, more eye-catching to me most of the time. That being said, really, artistry>>>>realism

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Ghosts4ever

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#20 Ghosts4ever  Online
Member since 2015 • 18463 Posts

Realistic obviously. i just cant stand cell shaded cartoonish borderlands style.

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robert_sparkes

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#21 robert_sparkes
Member since 2018 • 5350 Posts

Realistic but do enjoy the cell shaded art style of games like telltale in certain genres.

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madrocketeer

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#22  Edited By madrocketeer
Member since 2005 • 9071 Posts

I can't choose. They both have pros and cons. I think the term "Cartonish" is a bit limited in scope; I prefer "Stylized." I think Stylized graphics, when done well, can age better. Okami, for example, was released in 2006, and it's going to be widely cited as a great looking game pretty much forever. Meanwhile, Crysis was released in 2007, and while bits of it still look awesome, other things in the game are clearly showing its age. Another example; Team Fortress 2 still looks sharp, clean and timeless 12 years later, while Counter-Strike: CO, released 5 years afterwards, is already showing its age.

So yeah, a well-executed Realistic game jumps out and impresses from the get go, then fades over time. A well-executed Stylised game merely lands well on its feet, but holds up for much longer.

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PAL360

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#23  Edited By PAL360
Member since 2007 • 30242 Posts

I like both equally, but i have a particular love for pixelart.

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dzimm

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#24  Edited By dzimm
Member since 2006 • 6398 Posts

Art style doesn't matter to me as long as it's executed well and fits the tone of the game.

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Pedro

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#25 Pedro
Member since 2002 • 52875 Posts

Stylize graphics has ALWAYS aged better than the "realistic" graphics.

PS: The vast majority of games that are considered realistic is just stylized realism.

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mobius_basic

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#26 mobius_basic
Member since 2002 • 695 Posts

For me it all depends on the game, I like both as long as it "works". I like "cartoony or cell shaded" for games like Attack on Titan or DBZ, stuff like that. I really enjoyed the animation style in the tell tale games like TWD or Batman series.

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Jag85

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#27 Jag85
Member since 2005 • 15820 Posts

Depends on the genre. Certain genres are better suited to certain art styles. But most of the time, I prefer a cartoony art style.

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Speeny

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#28 Speeny
Member since 2018 • 2975 Posts

Cartoony for me. More of an old school kind of guy.

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CTR360

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#29 CTR360
Member since 2007 • 8950 Posts

both for me

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Sevenizz

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#30 Sevenizz
Member since 2010 • 6462 Posts

Depends on the game. If it’s Nintendo - cartoony. If it’s Xbox, realistic.

But I do not tolerate anime. Too ugly and cheap looking. I will not play an anime styled game - ever.

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deactivated-5e90a3763ea91

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#31 deactivated-5e90a3763ea91
Member since 2008 • 9437 Posts

cartoony. I see enough bs in real life.

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warmblur

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#32 warmblur
Member since 2017 • 7681 Posts

Realistic

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#33 Robbie23
Member since 2015 • 1468 Posts

I have never really enjoyed cell shaded graphics. I enjoyed XIII and first borderlands, but got over it after a while.

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mtron32

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#34 mtron32
Member since 2006 • 4294 Posts
@ajstyles said:

Realistic is always better.

Anyone can make a cartoon game with no textures or no effort like fortnite or Nintendo’s games.

Cartoons/cel shading and the like scream low budget and lazy. The games are always worse.

Realistic games tend to have higher budgets and are of overall higher quality.

Actually it takes far more sweat equity to produce great cartoony graphics since you're creating everything from scratch. All the things in the world need to be designed by a solid concept art group under a knowing art director so that everything from characters to light poles fit inside that world and are visually coherent. That art style then has to be maintained throughout the modeling and texturing process while also customizing the lighting and shaders you'll be using. All that is dependant on if you even have artists that are capable of hitting the style you're after. The animation also needs to fit with the style of art you've produced so that the consumer can remain immersed and that's assuming you've actually developed compelling game play.

While realism takes time and can be impressive, all you need to do is throw money and bodies at it and you can have a finished product, you don't need to train the staff to achieve that because we already know what it looks like. You can also use plenty of 3D scans to help you along and in the end, you'll hopefully have something nice. However, as a gamer, realistic games just lack a soul and I feel bad for all the people that end up working on them, they look like an absolute bore to develop.

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DragonfireXZ95

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#35 DragonfireXZ95
Member since 2005 • 26351 Posts
@mtron32 said:
@ajstyles said:

Realistic is always better.

Anyone can make a cartoon game with no textures or no effort like fortnite or Nintendo’s games.

Cartoons/cel shading and the like scream low budget and lazy. The games are always worse.

Realistic games tend to have higher budgets and are of overall higher quality.

Actually it takes far more sweat equity to produce great cartoony graphics since you're creating everything from scratch. All the things in the world need to be designed by a solid concept art group under a knowing art director so that everything from characters to light poles fit inside that world and are visually coherent. That art style then has to be maintained throughout the modeling and texturing process while also customizing the lighting and shaders you'll be using. All that is dependant on if you even have artists that are capable of hitting the style you're after. The animation also needs to fit with the style of art you've produced so that the consumer can remain immersed and that's assuming you've actually developed compelling game play.

While realism takes time and can be impressive, all you need to do is throw money and bodies at it and you can have a finished product, you don't need to train the staff to achieve that because we already know what it looks like. You can also use plenty of 3D scans to help you along and in the end, you'll hopefully have something nice. However, as a gamer, realistic games just lack a soul and I feel bad for all the people that end up working on them, they look like an absolute bore to develop.

Oh, because Diablo 3 turned out so well on release, right?

And Skyrim didn't look outdated upon release, right?

You're both swinging to extreme sides of the spectrum, and are both completely wrong.

Developers do manage to make crappy looking games that are cartoony, such as Human Fall Flat. Fun game, but the graphics are complete shite.

And then Skyrim, which had tons of money poured into it, yet had textures that were lower res than modded Oblivion on release.

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Dire_Raven

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#36 Dire_Raven
Member since 2019 • 44 Posts

Preferably realistic. The cartoonish graphical style, in most cases, lacks details , in favour for a more unique artstyle.

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Cloud_imperium

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#37 Cloud_imperium
Member since 2013 • 15142 Posts

Realistic. Dark and gritty. Slower paced.

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l34052

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#38 l34052
Member since 2005 • 3906 Posts

I like realistic myself, however, cartoon style works for some games. I loved Jet Set Radio for instance on the DC and then later the original XB, the cell shading really set the game apart from others at the time.

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#39 BenjaminBanklin
Member since 2004 • 8628 Posts
@MirkoS77 said:

That depends on the game.

Yup. I mean, what else can be said? A cel-shaded CoD game would be goofy and a super-realistic Mario game would disturb me to no end.

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mtron32

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#40 mtron32
Member since 2006 • 4294 Posts

@DragonfireXZ95 said:
@mtron32 said:
@ajstyles said:

Realistic is always better.

Anyone can make a cartoon game with no textures or no effort like fortnite or Nintendo’s games.

Cartoons/cel shading and the like scream low budget and lazy. The games are always worse.

Realistic games tend to have higher budgets and are of overall higher quality.

Actually it takes far more sweat equity to produce great cartoony graphics since you're creating everything from scratch. All the things in the world need to be designed by a solid concept art group under a knowing art director so that everything from characters to light poles fit inside that world and are visually coherent. That art style then has to be maintained throughout the modeling and texturing process while also customizing the lighting and shaders you'll be using. All that is dependant on if you even have artists that are capable of hitting the style you're after. The animation also needs to fit with the style of art you've produced so that the consumer can remain immersed and that's assuming you've actually developed compelling game play.

While realism takes time and can be impressive, all you need to do is throw money and bodies at it and you can have a finished product, you don't need to train the staff to achieve that because we already know what it looks like. You can also use plenty of 3D scans to help you along and in the end, you'll hopefully have something nice. However, as a gamer, realistic games just lack a soul and I feel bad for all the people that end up working on them, they look like an absolute bore to develop.

Oh, because Diablo 3 turned out so well on release, right?

And Skyrim didn't look outdated upon release, right?

You're both swinging to extreme sides of the spectrum, and are both completely wrong.

Developers do manage to make crappy looking games that are cartoony, such as Human Fall Flat. Fun game, but the graphics are complete shite.

And then Skyrim, which had tons of money poured into it, yet had textures that were lower res than modded Oblivion on release.

The OP only granted the option of two extremes so that's where I decided to riff on. Diablo 3 was neither cartoony nor realistic, just highly detailed with bad lighting. Skyrim looked fine considering the massive scale of the world and the amount of content it provided. I guess they couldve taken a couple moer years to get the textures the highest possible resolution, but that just compounds the cost and keeps the game off shelves that much longer. Those Oblivion textures looked great because a bunch of modders had LOTS of time to noodle around with things and upgrade the world, developers don't have that luxury. Fast, cheap, quality: you can only have two.

Yes, developers put out crappy renditions of both ends of the coin but that doesn't discount the fact that both take an enormous level of talent and man power to produce.

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GarGx1

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#41 GarGx1
Member since 2011 • 10934 Posts

Depends on the game, I don't have a set preference.

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#42 DaVillain-  Moderator
Member since 2014 • 47439 Posts

@i_p_daily said:

I don't have a favourite graphic style per say, if the game is fun for me graphical style doesn't matter.

I'm going what I_P_Daily stated. That's basically how I see it.

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Raining51

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#43 Raining51
Member since 2016 • 1151 Posts

I just don't have a preference it 100% dpeneds on how it's done.

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simple-facts

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#45  Edited By simple-facts  Online
Member since 2021 • 263 Posts

I like the best graphics,like FH5 and Flight simulator

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SecretPolice

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#46 SecretPolice
Member since 2007 • 38793 Posts

No option in the poll for this...

:P

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#47 osan0
Member since 2004 • 16381 Posts

I dont really have a strong presence either way. depends on what the game is going for. as long as the art style and art direction compliment the tone of the game and its executed well then whats the fuss?

i like to see both the state of the art in realistic graphics and whatever crazy stuff developers can come up with with the hardware available to them.

the more stylised games do tend to age better though.

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madrocketeer

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#48 madrocketeer
Member since 2005 • 9071 Posts

What's up with the two year necro?

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#49 Chutebox
Member since 2007 • 47755 Posts

Both?

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#50 NathanDrakeSwag
Member since 2013 • 17024 Posts

@simple-facts said:

I like the best graphics,like FH5 and Flight simulator

HaH