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Squidly
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« on: June 28, 2013, 10:42:11 AM »

So I'll start out by saying after all these years, I'm still NOT sick of the Metroidvania genre.

That being said, I don't know if others are.

An artist friend of mine was talking to me, since I'm currently making a Metroidvania, and said that there seemed to be an abundance of similar looking games. He was talking about how all Metroidvania's seemed to have "box enemies" and basically looked very similar to Cave Story in design.

I looked at Flixel, and recognized that a lot of games seemed to fit one of three categories:

Cavevania - Shoot shoot, upgrade upgrade, shoot shoot.

Zeldavania - Slash, Boomerang, Bomb, Slash

Platformvania - Run and jump, double jump, climb walls, jump some more, but no attacking.


Personally I think Cave Story isn't actually a metroidvania, as it's more of a level-based game with no real upgraded movement or any of that, but its influence is undeniable on the genre.

Meanwhile, I think the 'ultimate' metroidvania was Hero Core, as you could quite literally ignore the entire map and go straight to the boss from point zero.

But are we killing the genre in the same vain as Puzzle Games (dead) and Roguelikes (choking)?
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« Reply #1 on: June 28, 2013, 05:35:45 PM »

But are we killing the genre in the same vain as Puzzle Games (dead) and Roguelikes (choking)?

Not completely to the puzzle question, double yes to the roguelike question. Just like how people complain about the AAA market with first person shooters and XxTaCtIc0oLxX warfare games, people are also complaining about the indie market with these piles of retro-inspired metroidvanias and roguelikes. These tropes have become a negative icon of indie games.

And then we have the stuck-up hipsters who are supposed to be "representing" the indie scene.
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gimymblert
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« Reply #2 on: June 28, 2013, 09:04:21 PM »

How many base genre you think you can evolve to?

metroidvania is simply open 2D level design with gating. Beside that you have branching and linear level. Hand made or procedural.

And most game are about fighting, if action then shooting or punching/slashing, if not action then rpg mechanics or puzzle.

On a trail you have management everything but they are harder to do.

There 99% of game is either: exploring, fighting, thinking or some mix of the 3. Let's not go on art and theme.
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« Reply #3 on: June 28, 2013, 10:12:47 PM »

I think it's a problem that when a genre has been done a lot it develops its own sort of language and the games become more and more derivative, lazily relying on a preexisting shorthand. The fundamental concepts of the "metroidvania" genre are solid, and I don't think there could ever be no room for another one, providing it was done right. It's just that people forget to be creative a lot of the time in genres that are so well-trodden.
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« Reply #4 on: June 30, 2013, 09:57:38 PM »

I think it's a problem that when a genre has been done a lot it develops its own sort of language and the games become more and more derivative, lazily relying on a preexisting shorthand. The fundamental concepts of the "metroidvania" genre are solid, and I don't think there could ever be no room for another one, providing it was done right. It's just that people forget to be creative a lot of the time in genres that are so well-trodden.

Well, I think Metroidvania's have their language. I guess the difference is that a Metroidvania is more of a concept then a genre, yes?
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« Reply #5 on: June 30, 2013, 10:03:39 PM »

No way man! I don't ever think there can be to much of a genre. I think its possible to kill something to an extent like, CoD4,5,mw2,mw3,BO,BO2,BF3,BF4, but those don't make FPS games in general boring, its just they're all similar.

I guess what i'm trying to say is, if you're original with your game its genre shouldn't matter.
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« Reply #6 on: July 02, 2013, 06:21:21 PM »

I think gaming as a whole is too limited by genrefication, like a game has to be a good "X game" or "Y game" to be a good game. Somewhere every successful genre has it's merits, the kind of stuff that draws people to it's technicality (and or simplicity).

Well, that and the fact that it's far easier to produce a successful "X game" or "Y game" and to establish a new successful gaming concept, even one that is derivative of other concepts.
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« Reply #7 on: July 02, 2013, 06:31:16 PM »

i don't think we can ever have "too many" games of any genre. a lot of games being made is something to be celebrated

i mean, it's not like the people making metroidvanias are cutting into other genres; it's not like the indie devs of metroidvanias would be coding FPS games instead if they weren't making metroidvanias, they'd probably be making nothing else instead
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« Reply #8 on: July 09, 2013, 10:43:09 PM »

Very interesting topic. Will be lurking, but I figured I aught to put in some input.

I don't think Metroid-vania games are played out by any means, though they are seeing a resurgence and a hike in popularity, which I love b/c they're my favorite genre alongside rogue-likes.

I'd like to say that a good game is a good game no matter how saturated the market is with similar titles, but it's not true. I think that devs have begun to see metroid-vania as a genre rather than as more of an idea. Like a design philosophy promoting exploration, curiosity, and individual ambition and drive.

The more I think about it the more it seems the resurgence of roguelikes/metroid-vania games could be seen as a backlash from the indie community against the AAA industry's oversaturation of tightly scripted, hyper linear, set piece littered, easy on the player shooters. I mean, just look at dead space's evolution, pretty close to case & point there (or the evolution of Battle Field from 1942 all the way through Battle Field 3 [Including BFBC])

So, that's my regurgitation, hope it brought clarity or some interesting ideas at least.
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« Reply #9 on: July 09, 2013, 11:33:18 PM »

The problem isn't too much in a genre, but not enough indies defying or innovating traditional conventions.
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« Reply #10 on: July 10, 2013, 06:45:55 AM »

I agree with Eres, the more games getting made, genre notwithstanding, the better the world is Smiley

However, having a lot of the so-called "Metroidvanias", I think says something about what indie devs like, since chances are an indie dev is making a game he wants to play and not constrained by business decisions or imposed designs from executives (like the endless FPS sequels, for instance).

It might also be related to the fact that people still want to try creating and playing these types of games. I don't think a genre can be killed by having too many games, it's like saying that someone who likes a sport, say, Football, grows tired because now there are leagues and teams and tournaments all year around in every corner of the world. I think the Football fan would be thrilled, right?

If the game is done right, and it's well designed, it will be good, no matter the genre, even if there are thousands of other games in the same genre.
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« Reply #11 on: July 10, 2013, 10:08:09 AM »

However, having a lot of the so-called "Metroidvanias", I think says something about what indie devs like, since chances are an indie dev is making a game he wants to play and not constrained by business decisions or imposed designs from executives (like the endless FPS sequels, for instance).

Indie devs still need to make money, and from what I've seen they are still creatively constrained because they are still at the mercy of the consumer. They might not have investors telling them what to do, but they still take into account Will people buy this, and consciously or not make design decisions based on that. Any established Indy that tells you otherwise is either full of shit, unaware that they are doing this, or money just isn't a factor to them.

now I'm not saying they are as constrained as AAA studios, but both AAAs and Indies need money to survive. And this is one of the bigger reasons as to why you see so many samey games.

Another reason is many are amateur developers. They are still honing their skills and may have this dream project in mind, but are unable to take it on just yet. So they start to take on projects based on classic designs, which is always a good thing. I think the majority of Indies I've seen fall under this one.

Once an Indy gets some games under their belt. If they are still producing the samey shit, then yeah, it's too much
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« Reply #12 on: July 10, 2013, 10:27:46 AM »

@aberrantmind: Well, I kinda get your point. Maybe I should've used the word "hobbyist"? But that's rarely used. I suppose you are right if by indie you exclusively mean the devs that must still sell a certain amount of copies of their games to pay the bills, as in, they live out of their craft. I was pretty much talking bout the devs that just make games for kicks, they might have a full time job other than making the games.
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« Reply #13 on: July 10, 2013, 10:39:09 AM »

They'd fall under money isn't a factor for them which is really the best place to be for an Indy.
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« Reply #14 on: July 10, 2013, 10:43:39 AM »

They'd fall under money isn't a factor for them which is really the best place to be for an Indy.

who? I'm sure there're a-lot of indies who are making Metroidvania styled games who DO plan to sell them.
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« Reply #15 on: July 10, 2013, 11:06:08 AM »

metroidvania good = mastering map popular, simplest implementation
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« Reply #16 on: July 10, 2013, 11:08:38 AM »

I think it's an observation bias kind of thing.  Roguelikes (or rather Roguelike-likes as those are the majority of Roguelikes that get made) make up a tiny, tiny fraction of the games played (or made). Metroidvanias, similarly, are a tiny representation of the games played or made.  But they are both overrepresented in the indie scene (and are probably even more overrepresented here at TIGS) compared to the general population.  

The most common "indie" games are clones of successful iphone games, clones of minecraft, tower defense games, and match-3's.  Any single one of those genres dwarfs Metroidvanias or Roguelike-likes.  

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« Reply #17 on: July 10, 2013, 11:11:18 AM »


It might also be related to the fact that people still want to try creating and playing these types of games. I don't think a genre can be killed by having too many games, it's like saying that someone who likes a sport, say, Football, grows tired because now there are leagues and teams and tournaments all year around in every corner of the world. I think the Football fan would be thrilled, right?


well....

saturation is an issue. it isn't like it used to be, I guess, because the review system is too good (out of my ass?), but whatever.

if you release into a saturated market you'll lose sales relative to a release into a different market, seriously impacting your ability to make more releases. so having "too many" of anything can hurt anyone.
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« Reply #18 on: July 10, 2013, 11:12:44 AM »

I think it's an observation bias kind of thing.  Roguelikes (or rather Roguelike-likes as those are the majority of Roguelikes that get made) make up a tiny, tiny fraction of the games played (or made). Metroidvanias, similarly, are a tiny representation of the games played or made.  But they are both overrepresented in the indie scene (and are probably even more overrepresented here at TIGS) compared to the general population.  

The most common "indie" games are clones of successful iphone games, clones of minecraft, tower defense games, and match-3's.  Any single one of those genres dwarfs Metroidvanias or Roguelike-likes.  

This also means there's fewer people to play them.
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« Reply #19 on: July 10, 2013, 11:16:57 AM »

That could be, but I don't think we're remotely close to having too many Metroidvanias, or even less, reaching any sort of saturation for indie games.

Big releases are still few and far in between (with "Big" releases I'm referring to games that end up selling 50k-100k (or more) copies), not all indie games published. Self-publishing in the web has made it quite difficult to track how many actual indie releases are occuring. Not to mention the fact of those devs that publish their games for free.
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