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rafaelszpo Blog

Masahiro Sakurai is mad

In a recent article for Techland, Masahiro Sakurai says that the problem of nowadays shooters are not "creative enough" because their control scheme seems stale. Well, as obvious as that may be, I doubt that it is reason enough to "get creative" on that side of the board.

I believe they have already taken too many chances with playing around with the estabilished control schemes when they released the Wii. I, for one, still have not fully adapted to the motion sensing remote of the Wii and probably never will. I'm just too clumsy and awkward for motions and waves. I do prefer to play with both hands on a controler, moving levers and buttons in the process but the last thing I want is to get up and jump and swing my own swords. That's just the reason I play video-games in the first place: to leave all the hard work to the heroes on-screen! Oh ok, shooting games were fun on the SMS with the Light Phaser but even then I didn't had to swing, jump, defend myself or balance in a strange board! This is too much already!

So I would be happy if I could still control my shooting character with the directional pad and fire with the A button, and maybe a special for the X, changing weapons with the L and R and maybe a bomb for the B. That would be great. I don't need to control him with the stylus and fire with L while controling my view with the directional. NO THANKS. Please do not think that placing the controls in a new, confusing and irritating place is "being creative". I can live without that kind of creativity, thank you.

And no, the touch screen on the DS should always have been only a gimmick: just to type something and select menus, or maybe the occasional puzzle or mini-game. It should never be the way to control your character (at least not the ONLY one) or do important things on the gameplay.

And I guess I don't speak only for myself.

Rating Systems

I was never a fan of any rating system, mind you. Being one of the skeptic people around earth who would rather see with my own eyes (or hear with my own ears) before formulating an opinion, recently I was thankful that I never cared for them at all.

Se for example what reviews say about music on Pokémon Colosseum. They say it´s 5. 5, out of 10, means it´s bordering on mediocre. But it is beautifully orchestrated and motivating. It´s nothing like 5. It´s at least 8 or 9.

Let´s keep in mind, also, that these reviewers do nothing else on their lives than playing video games which is nothing like reality for us, real people. Maybe for a hardcore player, but for a casual player like myself, their opinions matter very little.

As I understand, people keep their rating about games keeping in mind only those hardcore players. They never consider us casual gamers. That is hardly a reasonable approach to it. We live in a time consuming society with forces you with it´s historical complications, like a social life, your work, your studies, taking care of your own physical shape, etc. In the middle of all this you take some time for gaming, right? So it´s not much time.

So, why, I ask, why did I get some fun out of Space Raiders for game cube when it is so poorly rated? 2.9? Gosh! I must be craze to have even played it! Am I an alien? A total freak of nature? I don´t think so.

It´s a short and poorly conceived game, all right, but it´s fun. It delivers alien devastation at a mere push of a button, wich can be somewhat fun after a hard day, when you don´t want to push your brain any farther, just want to smash some buttons for the sake of it. =)

And at that point it would deserve a 5 for my standards.

I could go on and on about how I think this rating system is useless. When I go around the net searching for clues about what game to buy next I look at screen shots and videos, but never read the reviews. I guess we all should know what kind of fun we like, not some hardcore reviewer sited 24/7 behind a TV with nothing else to do with it´s time =)

Concluding: If it looks like fun for you, it probably is!