July 26th, 2017
Hyper, hyper, hyper…
I’m stuck in a rut. A lull as it were. My enthusiasm and passion for the industry are being taken over by my darker and more cynical side. I feel like there’s an ongoing battle between the Jedi and Sith raging in my mind with no indication as to who will win. The reason? The optimist within wants to get excited about new titles whereas the pessimist (maybe realist) can’t help but think ‘Don’t believe the hype’.
I refer to my most recent gaming experience with Horizon: Zero Dawn. A bad game? No, definitely not. A great game? Some might argue so, but not me. It was good, but nothing more. It had been on my radar long before release and I jumped in a month or two post launch. The logic being that I would wait until I had finished other games to dedicate the time to it.
But after all the hype, all the rave reviews, I was left wanting more. Much more. Here lies the problem; there’s so much hype in the media coverage of the industry these days that I think it does more harm than good. The element of surprise is gone, there are too many leaks, inside stories and previews for our own good.
Imagine how good it would be if we went back a few years when we relied on print media and games conferences to come round for our latest news and previews. Games could sneak up on you, hearing nothing about them until the last minute and it was already on the shelves. Sadly those days are long behind us.
The result is very damaging I find. The majority of my games are rented as I’ve been burnt all too many times recently with games falling short of the mark. I live by the mantra ‘Under promise and over deliver’ but that doesn’t sell games sadly. Masses of hype and promises that turn out to be false ship units and get people talking, which is sad.
Looking forward, I couldn’t honestly say what game I was excited about in 2017. I will play a lot of those that are coming out, but I just try not to get my hopes up for them to be dashed once I’ve committed to buying them. The sad thing is that PR and marketing teams just want to see dollar/pound signs in gamers eyes, the focus on money and not quality.
My closing thoughts look on to Destiny 2 and how much I’ve seen on that of late. Remember the first one? So do I; I played the Beta and had pretty much played the whole base game. That was a midnight launch that I truly regretted. Will 2 be better? For all those excited fans out there, I hope so…
The Cynical Gamer