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Gaming The Nostalgia Factor


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I find that this happens to me a lot and probably happens to a lot of gaming fans who have been playing for a long time.

I recently found my NES and the first thing out of my mouth was "Wow, I can't wait to play all those great games again!" I set up the NES and get ready for hours of fun...then, I play some of the games and find that they weren't as good as I had originally thought they were. In fact, some of them really, really sucked.

It's the same thing with the SNES. I love it dearly and it's still my favorite system of all time. However, I can't help but look back at some of the games that I played a lot and wonder "Why the hell did I think [i]that[/i] was good?"

Why do you think this happens? Do our fond memories of the games that we played as children blind us to the reality that we played some really crappy games when we were kids? Do you find that more often than not, games that you really liked when you were younger just don't hold up today? Or is it just that your tastes have matured and you have a better idea of what's considered "good" or "bad?"
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[color=navy][i] I can't say I do really. I play my SNES all the time, and the games don't seem any less exciting as when they were realeased.
The reason for me would probably be the style. Now adays, it's all "insanely good graphical environment" type things. But back then with the SNES that really wasn't the case. I order for a game to be good, it had to have excellent gameplay and good story, because it didin't have graphics to fall back on. That's probably why I am a major fan of GBA games, and GBA re-makes.
Personaly, i'd take an SNES game to a PS2 game in most cases. I find some of the new games lack plot. I could care less how good or bad the graphics are, if it has a memorable story. (Think Cronotrigger)
So yeah..that's just me though. I think what happens in the 'nostalgia factor' is simply what we look for in games. Some people look for amazing graphics, some people look for a good story. Some people look for amazing gameplay. It effects your thoughts on old games, and new games directly.
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Guest Crimson Spider
Not at all.

Those games are still fun to me. I can still play [u]Mario Brothers[/u] for the NES for hours, and not be bored. Let alone play other great long games like doubledragon, River City Ransom, Megaman X 3, Utopia, Sim City, or Supar Mario: Legend of the Seven Stars.

I also find games for my Atari and nintelovision to be quite fun for about 20 minutes. Good ole Triple Action never ceases to entertain me. I also try to get as high as I can on Astrosmash and Space Hawk.

I guess that the reason why most people don't find games entertaining anymore is because they play the game for the graphics. I hear people at school say "That game blows 'cuz it has bad graphics." I really don't pay attention to graphics after a little while in the game, unless they are really stunning at one point. I pay attention to gameplay, music, and idea.

Not that you say games are bad just "'cuz" of the graphics. That's just all the crap I get at school.
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There are still lots of older games that I still have a blast with. Even after 11 years of play time, nothing has come close to unseating The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past as the greatest game of all time, in my mind. I have lots of fun with Super Mario Bros., Super Metroid, Super Castlevania IV and things like that.

However, it's other games that I played and enjoyed when I was younger that wouldn't exactly be timeless classics if released today. There are certain games that I played when I was younger that, if released in this day and age, I would absolutely despise. I thought I would be have a good time playing these games, but playing them has soured my opinion on some of the games I played in my youth.

However, there will always be the games that I enjoyed playing the hell out of when I was a kid that I still enjoy to this very day. After a hard day at school, I find nothing better than to sit in front of the television and bust out Super Mario All Stars so that I can play the updated version of Super Mario Bros. 3 and relive the glorious memories that I had of that game as a child.

Crimson Spider introduced the point about a lot of people not enjoying games because of the graphics and I think that those people are ignorant, to be honest. The truly great games excel not because they're amazing graphical experiences, but because they have timeless gameplay that can be thoroughly enjoyable whether you play it the day you buy it or twenty years after the matter.
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[color=#707875]Oh yes, your thread brings up a very good point.

A lot of people are completely blinded by rose coloured glasses, in my opinion. lol

You know, the whole "2D is inherently better than 3D" and "modern games will never be as good as classics" crowd.

Generally, it doesn't really annoy me much. But it's disappointing, because people with that attitude are missing out on some of the truly amazing innovations in games today. And that's a shame. Some modern games are far better than their classic counterparts, even in relative terms.

I mean, when I look at games like Viewtiful Joe and Rez and ICO...and a whole host of others (Vib Ribbon, anyone?), I see sectors of the industry that are more willing than ever to experiment with convention. That didn't happen as much in the 8 and 16 bit days.

An increasing commercial focus on games has hurt the industry in certain ways, I think. I'm very willing to concede that point.

But generally, I think that companies are far more innovative and expirimental today than they ever were before. And this is partly due to the simple fact that games cost more to produce, tend to make less money...and there tends to be far more competition. The end result is that you really [i]need[/i] to push innovation and creativity if you're going to develop the next best thing. Copying everyone else will only get you so far, generally (though some companies get away with it more than others).

I could go on for ages about this...but basically, I think that we do tend to look at the past with rose coloured glasses. But also, you have to remember that some games are not as exciting to you now because you're used to better visuals, greater overall quality or a combination of both. So when you go back after that, things are a bit dampened.

But I personally still enjoy some "classics" just as much as I used to. For me, it really depends on the original game. Sometimes I can go back and even play something on N64 and think "Wow, this game is really horrible...it was [i]never[/i] very good". And that perspective may have only come through greater experience.[/color]
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[QUOTE][i]Originally posted by James [/i]
[B][color=#707875]You know, the whole "2D is inherently better than 3D" and "modern games will never be as good as classics" crowd.[/color] [/B][/QUOTE]

I used to be exactly like that. I simply refused to play certain 3D titles because they weren't what I was used to. Slowly, my opinion (though it took some classics like Super Mario 64 and Zelda: Ocarina of Time to do so) changed on this matter.

The people who just stick to older classics and refuse to play modern games...I find them annoying, to be honest. Mostly because I know what it's like to be one of them. And it sucks.

Look at Metroid Prime. It's inherently different from earlier Metroid titles, yet very familiar. It's too bad certain people who refuse to play it because "it's a FPS and Metroid shouldn't be an FPS" are missing out on what is probably the greatest game of this generation. Metroid Prime has the classic Metroid gameplay, enhanced by modern technology to become a game unequaled by just about anything in gaming history. I dare the people who stick to classics to play this game and tell me it's not good for the gaming industry.

New experiences are what drive the gaming industry. If everything was the same thing over and over again, many of the classics people play would never have existed. Many classic games are classics because they dared to go above and beyond the expectations of gamers. Super Mario Bros. was vastly different from what most people had played up to that time. The Legend of Zelda invented one of gaming's most successful genres, the Action-RPG. Classics are classics because they dared to innovate and try something other than whatever was the norm at the time. The titles that James mentioned did an excellent job of doing that and are classics, in my opinion. It's too bad many other gamers in the world don't think so.
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