Transferable Skills

At the recent i33 event, someone asked me what sort of games I enjoy. Just as I was about to answer, Dan responded with “he’s an FPS man”, whilst I was initially shocked, I now realise he’s quite right.

Even a cursory look over my gaming history will show I have somewhat eclectic taste in games: Forza Motorsport, Viva Piñata, Rockstar’s Table Tennis and Shrek the Third to name but a few. Look at the games I’ve been playing recently however and they’re all first/third person shooters – Rainbow Six Vegas, Gears of War, Halo 3, Call of Duty 4 and Rainbow Six Vegas 2 (I finished the incredibly short single player campaign yesterday). So why have I so obviously shifted my focus?

The fact is, I enjoy playing co-operatively online with friends far more than I do single player. These days, the only co-operative or team based games that have well developed online play are shooters. If there were different genres of good quality games available that supported co-operative or team based play, I’d be first in the queue at the check out.

I genuinely believe that gaming is reaching a point where online play is more important than the quality of the single player experience. Whilst I hope there will always be room in the market for the Assassin’s Creeds and the Bioshocks, I’m hoping that game publishers will find a way to successfully integrate rich co-operative multiplayer gameplay into more genres so that I can work together with friends without holding an MP5. After all, how good would co-operative Portal be?







8 responses to “Transferable Skills”

  1. Michael avatar

    While I do enjoy online play, it’s based on the assumption that everyone has a connection. Splitscreen is quite neglected – it’s the demented relative stuck in a home while you swan off with your rich uncle (or aunt with the unfortunate name), um, Richie…

    Co-op Portal? Hmm…

  2. Tony avatar

    I’m with you on that one, Michael. Rainbow Six Vegas 2 gets a thumbs up for that, as you can play that splitscreen too.

    As for other types of cooperative games, I’m still moist with excitement about the thought of some co-op platforming action on LittleBigPlanet later in the year. And multiplayer GTA IV in a month should be lots of fun…

  3. Simes avatar

    I’m actually a bit miffed at games which provide couch co-op but no online. None of the people who live near enough to my house want to come round and play EDF2017 or Dynasty Warriors: Gundam. And those games are *fun*. Peter Molyneux keeps talking about couch co-op for Fable 2, which is great, but I hope he doesn’t forget those of us who are too annoying to game with in person. 🙂

  4. Nick avatar

    Looking from the Xbox POV, the only other co-op solutions I can think of online are that of MMO’s. There’s not much of a selection of the MMO variety on Xbox Live as it stands. And to be honest I’m not sure if people want to pay an extra fee per month on top of their Xbox Live Gold Service, unless it’s turns out to be a really good MMO! Right now the only real co-op solution is military shooters.

  5. Martin avatar

    I think there is also a huge hole in the market for simple adverserial games for two players. Just imagine Chu-Chu rocket- one as the mice one as the cats, proper online pac-man- one as pac the rest ghosts. The list is potentially endless.

  6. Simes avatar

    I would rather there were more choice than just military shooters. More games like Crackdown, for example. Because military shooters are fine and all but eventually they just hack me off. In terms of MMOS, APB might be fun, though.

  7. Michael avatar

    Well, there was Phantasy Star Universe and Final Fantasy XI… Fable 2 has co-op? That’s quite intriguing. Could RPGS have co-op without going MMO?

  8. Simes avatar

    A staple of RPGs is the party of characters. No reason I can think of why more than one of them couldn’t be controlled by human beings. You could do it in Neverwinter Nights, kind of.

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