Old Games Are Only For The Old
As much as the gaming veterans don't want to admit it, it has become plain that classics are only for those who played the classics when they first arrived.
Given the huge advancements in the interactive entertainment realm, it certainly seems silly to compare Super Mario Bros. to Uncharted 2: Among Thieves and indeed, it is. Logic and reasoning says we really can't compare those products; it's like comparing a Model T to a Bugatti. And no matter how special that ol' '55 Chevy may seem to a car collector, or to someone who was actually alive when such vehicles roamed the roads, there is no comparison in terms of performance, comfort and just about any other element. I suppose one could like the design of one over the other, but even that doesn't quite fly in the world of old vs. new video games. We can all appreciate how amazing SMB was at the time but of course, it doesn't have better graphics than Uncharted 2. Different universes.
The point is, it seems more and more obvious that if one wasn't around for the early days, they will never appreciate the early days. They will continue to mock those who give the golden age any credit whatsoever, and will wonder how any of us can go back and play something like Final Fantasy VII. It looks archaic, it has archaic gameplay mechanics, and oh dear lord, there aren't even any voices! The further back you go, the less appeal those classic titles have for anybody under the age of 20. Two things are chiefly to blame: first, nostalgia, which is often the bane of objectivity, and second, the aforementioned industry advancements. We've gone so far in such a short span of time, 30-year-olds have very different gaming experiences close to their hearts, when directly compared to 20-year-olds.
I will say this, though. It seems the purity and simplicity of the classics in question will never be replicated, nostalgia or no. It's why so many of those games can be replayed by just about anyone at any time, and they will enjoy themselves. Tetris is only one example. And I question if the new generation will create games the young'uns will want to go back and play in 10 years time. Thing is, I'm not sure I see any huge gameplay innovations on the horizon, and if the only difference between now and 10 years from now is visual, why bother with the inferior visuals? See, I don't go back to play old FFs or other games for the graphics (obviously); I do it because they boast gameplay we simply don't have, anymore.
So what do you think about all this?
1/17/2011 12:12:04 PM Ben Dutka