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DMC5 reviews and expectations

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1DMC5 reviews and expectations Empty DMC5 reviews and expectations on Mon Mar 04, 2019 8:47 am

Royta/Raeng

Royta/Raeng
Admin
DMC5 reviews and expectations An7g5qwk40k21

Prepare yourself!

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2DMC5 reviews and expectations Empty Re: DMC5 reviews and expectations on Mon Mar 04, 2019 12:15 pm

Infinity_Divide


C-Rank
The accuracy of this is staggering, every single one of these will show up at some point.

“I rushed through this game one time on Easy to get out a review the day the embargo lifts. I only played for a total of maybe 7 hours but the combat seems shallow because the game didn’t tell me exactly how everything works. How am I supposed to care about these characters when they haven’t humanized Dante or Nero? As it stands, they both represent toxic masculinity which is simply unacceptable in (insert current year). Capcom need to learn that games are more than just mindlessly pressing buttons to kill demons, games have evolved. My video games shouldn’t focus on gameplay.”

Or something along those lines, anyway.

3DMC5 reviews and expectations Empty Re: DMC5 reviews and expectations on Mon Mar 04, 2019 1:26 pm

Gregorinho


D-Rank
The one about "gamey" games and "high art" gets me absolutely (devil) triggered.

I'm all for people to enjoy games with heavy cinematic elements (I am a Metal Gear fan after all!), but it makes me laugh that games that want to be movies are considered high art, but not games that are innovative in mechanics and interactivity - the things that make games unique.

Even if DMC 5 turns out to be less than we hoped, I'll still be grateful it was made. In a world where Naughty Dog's titles, Rockstar's games and Dad of War are considered masterpieces, I feel like we're lucky to see major developers making these types of games still.

4DMC5 reviews and expectations Empty Re: DMC5 reviews and expectations on Mon Mar 04, 2019 2:44 pm

Royta/Raeng

Royta/Raeng
Admin
That last one always stings for me. I am really critical of this game and series since I love it so much, but it also at times feels wrong to talk about it the way that I do because as you note Greg, we're almost lucky to be even getting one... it's a game that's fully focused on action and gameplay (outside of some gamedevelopment hickups like emphasis on clothingphysics and here I go again with my big mouth I can't help myself). It is so rare. Really hope it doesn't get burried.

That said yeah, the bingo card will probably be filled.

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5DMC5 reviews and expectations Empty Re: DMC5 reviews and expectations on Mon Mar 04, 2019 3:27 pm

Nadster


B-Rank
That card is golden!

6DMC5 reviews and expectations Empty Re: DMC5 reviews and expectations on Mon Mar 04, 2019 5:41 pm

Nadster


B-Rank
I went to the website that had it and I found this:

Almost 18 years ago Capcom set about making the first Devil May Cry game- the pioneer of its genre. It goes by many names from 'character action' to 'spectacle fighter', but whatever your preferred term it's undeniable how it set the wheels in motion for other developers to follow suit. Unfortunately, to the dismay of many, the genre has been part of a dying breed, and outside of companies like PlatinumGames (Bayonetta, Nier:Automata) few have dared to dip their toes in.

Thus, it is understandable how excited fans were to witness the reveal of Devil May Cry 5- the latest entry in the titular series, and arriving over 10 years after its previous entry. That is, of course, if you were to conveniently sidestep the reboot named DmC: Devil May Cry- Ninja Theory's (Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice) rather fantastic take on the series classic formula. And it's unfortunately here that is where Devil May Cry 5's problems start. What should have been an opportunity to unleash a new lease on life for for a franchise of days gone past is instead marred by archaic design choices which can't help but make me wonder if the reboot shouldn’t have stuck around a little bit longer.

Much like in the last game, Devil May Cry 5 follows on the story of 'The Sons of Sparda', featuring series mainstay 'Dante', DMC4's 'Nero' (now a veteran demon hunter more akin to Dante), and newcomer 'V', a mage-like summoner who plays very differently to his predecessors. They must all team up to take down the deadly new antagonist 'Urizen' who threatens the human world on his quest for power.

The story is simple, if not underwhelming. So desperate is Devil May Cry 5 to win around the fans of old that it unfortunately places fanservice above having anything meaningful to say at all. DmC gave us a gritty story about fighting back against a corrupt system, complete with engaging character interactions and a compelling narrative. DMC5 shoves this to the side in lieu of a story and script which is equal parts cheesy and embarrassing. In an age where videogames push the boundaries of story ever further artistically (The Last of Us, God of War 2018) Devil May Cry 5 feels almost out of place and behind the times.

The trademark cheese is there, albeit favoured by Nero more than Dante this time around, and fan favourites 'Lady' and 'Trish' are mostly reduced to sexy window-dressing whose on-screen presence is used for little more than to titillate and arouse its audience. A far cry from the implementation of the reboot's 'Kat', who showed us that females in action games can be something more than yucky masturbation-fodder.

Unfortunately the game's problems don't stop at the story, either. Devil May Cry 5 is, of course, an action game, but when compared to games like God of War it feels worn out and old. Combos and move-lists feel needlessly complex, Nero's new mechanic in the form of switchable prosthetic arms is confusing and clunky, and V feels perplexingly out of place. Even worse is how the soundtrack is now 'dynamic' and grows in complexity in tandem with your combos. Of course, this system means you'll most likely be listening to nothing more than ambient versions of tracks more often than not because getting anything higher than an 'C' will prove nearly impossible for all but the most dedicated players. DmC also boasted this system, but so much more lenient and fair was it to average players that it didn't prove a problem.

Speaking of dedication I suppose I should talk about the replay value. Devil May Cry is, in some ways, a score attack game. You are encouraged to play better and get a higher score and then... well, not much really. There are no levels and no loot, and outside of unlockable attacks which you will have attained a majority of by the end of your first run, there really isn't much left. The combat system itself is the reason to return, but if my previous paragraph didn't convince you, needless to say I won't be. This is worsened by the fact that when all was said and done, it took me about 15 hours to beat the game from start to finish. So many games work their hardest to creating sprawling open-worlds chock-full of content to keep players busy, but Devil May Cry falters even there as well, with only a linear offering to make of itself. And this is all bad enough; 'Surely it can't get worse?' I hear you cry. Well...

Tying back into unlocking attacks there is a currency system to unlock them in the form of 'Red Orbs'. These can be attained by killing enemies, beating side challenges etc. or alternatively they can be purchased via real world currency. This even extends to a revive system whereby players can revive themselves on the spot with full health for a gradually increasing price with each following death. Far from the most egregious implementation, it's still frankly an embarrassing inclusion for a full-priced AAA game, and when combined with the confusing combat creating a high barrier to entry it will no doubt prey on newcomers. Devil May Cry is renowned for its difficulty and that remains here even on 'Human' difficulty, but I don't remember the last time Dark Souls let me pay money to keep on going, and it's disappointing to see it here.

So what are we left with? In conclusion Devil May Cry 5 is a bit of a relic. It ignores the strides made by its peers over the last 10 years and doesn't quite seem to realise that the gaming landscape has changed since 2008. Its story is witless, its combat is mired with overcomplicated repetition, and its monetisation practices are unnecessary at best and seedy at worst. If I had to say anything good about the game it would be that the visuals are rather nice, but even that wasn't enough to save it in the end. The franchise asks us if even a 'Devil May Cry', and to that I say I don't know, but give one this game and maybe it will.

8.5/10

7DMC5 reviews and expectations Empty Re: DMC5 reviews and expectations on Mon Mar 04, 2019 6:05 pm

Gregorinho


D-Rank
I saw that on Reddit - truly a work of art!

8DMC5 reviews and expectations Empty Re: DMC5 reviews and expectations on Mon Mar 04, 2019 6:26 pm

Royta/Raeng

Royta/Raeng
Admin
Dear lord that was painful to read. And I can totally see that happen.

http://stinger.actieforum.com

9DMC5 reviews and expectations Empty Re: DMC5 reviews and expectations on Mon Mar 04, 2019 9:36 pm

KSubzero1000


D-Rank
At the risk of making myself unpopular right off the bat, I'm not too worried about this stuff.

I can definitely understand the frustration to an extent - it grinds my gears as well whenever things I care deeply about end up being misunderstood or undersold. I agree that a lot of the DmC coverage was needlessly antagonistic and that classic gameplay considerations have a tendency of being unduly swept under the rug nowadays. Aside from character action games, I'm also a massive classic Fire Emblem fan for example, and if there's a franchise that constantly gets dismissed sight unseen by people who have only played the latest installments, it's classic FE. So I get it.

But I think it's also important to acknowledge that dedicated hardcore fans like us only ever make up a very small percentage of the overall player base. Looking at the trophies of the PS4 re-release of DMC3, a game that a large number of ordinary customers have obviously not bought by virtue of its "age" to begin with, less than 2% have gotten the platinum. Sure, we love replaying old games and analysing mechanical systems, but for better or worse, most players are content tourists who don't care about this stuff. I don't think there's anything inherently wrong with that. A Saurian video would bore them to tears, so I don't think it's that surprising that mainstream reviews are meant to serve as a general audience's buyer's guide rather than a complete mechanical breakdown aimed at folks who were going to buy the game anyway. We're just not the target audience of these reviews and I think that's ok.

Let's take NG2 as an example. Personally, I adore the game despite all its flaws because I think it has a magnificent and endlessly replayable combat system. But I also think that a more casual player who cares more about story and level design than combat would arguably be better served reading a more casual review warning him/her of the lackluster elements of the overall product instead of listening to a fanboy gush over the UT system for half an hour. Knowing your reviewer is half the battle.

But there are also some practical considerations. I keep thinking about Matthewmatosis' video on the GoW reboot, which I probably consider to be the single most insightful and best articulated analysis of the game:



It's wonderful to see him deconstruct the game in this manner and try to give a balanced, fact-based opinion that takes every aspect into consideration, including some biting criticism of the combat system that was noticeably absent from most mainstream reviews. But this video also came out four months after the game, and a large portion of that was probably spent playing it on several difficulties, gathering footage including from numerous other games, writing and revising the script, and editing all of it into a coherent video. Stuff of this caliber takes time to produce, time that I would imagine most launch reviewers don't have.


At the end of the day, a review is just someone's opinion, even if that opinion is based on criteria that differ from mine or that I would consider to be lacking in some respects. I haven't based any of my purchases on mainstream reviews in well over ten years, and DMCV's aggregate score won't influence my enjoyment or criticism of the game one bit. Personally, I find it healthier to focus my time and energy on playing the games I love and my attention on the few essayists / content creators that shine a light on the aspects that matter to me.


Just my two cents.

10DMC5 reviews and expectations Empty Re: DMC5 reviews and expectations on Mon Mar 04, 2019 10:22 pm

Birdman


Moderator
content tourists
I love this term.

11DMC5 reviews and expectations Empty Re: DMC5 reviews and expectations on Tue Mar 05, 2019 12:07 am

Gregorinho


D-Rank
It's funny you should mention Matthewmatosis' GoW case study, as I was watching that yesterday thinking about how refreshing it was to see somebody objectively analyse what doesn't work effectively in the game's combat systems.

Content from YouTube creators like him only reinforces the idea that reviews from "game journalists" are pretty unecessary. I think the sort of 3rd-person action games that Capcom (and now Platinum) are known for offer excellent replay value, which is totally irrelevant to a journalist who will play the game once (if that) on Easy Mode. They won't unlock the full movesets for each character, they won't experience how higher difficulties remix the gameplay (in more ways than just altering health/damage values), and they possibly won't even experience enough challenge to warrant them putting any effort in to learning the mechanics. How many journalists do you think will make use of Nero's EX-ACT/MAX-ACT mechanics, or enemy step? How many will even check the command list and know they're in the game!?

The thing is though, I can't really blame the journalists - the lack of detail in reviews is reflective of the average gamer's taste and attention span, which I think you alluded to KSub. If your boss tells you that you have a bunch of reviews to write up, you couldn't spend the time to learn the game even if you wanted to. You're correct in saying that gamers with our interests are a very small minority within the full player base.

I agree that the critical reception will not influence my opinion on the game at all. I do think it's a shame though that so much of the finer detail that the developers worked hard on will be lost on the masses because they won't even know it's there. The result of this could be that the general opinion of DMC 5 is that it's just another hack and slash game that couldn't possibly live up to GoW, and if that happens, what would be next for the series? Worse yet, what would be next for the genre?



Last edited by Gregorinho on Tue Mar 05, 2019 1:28 am; edited 1 time in total

12DMC5 reviews and expectations Empty Re: DMC5 reviews and expectations on Tue Mar 05, 2019 12:35 am

Birdman


Moderator
Worse yet, what would be next for the genre?
Often I find 'vets' and fans of the genre cause equal to or more destruction to the genre than trolls and reviewers.

Most of my arguments online over the years haven't been with trolls, they've been with say, DMC fans who played another action game, didn't get it and start spouting their exp as fact. Pretty much what the reviwers do. No matter how to try to explain, they get more hostile.

Take a look at the Chaos Legion board here, and in the latest post I've linked to the CL topic on the DMC board. Prime example, though FAR from the worst I've encountered.

Look at the attitude. It's impossible to admit being wrong, impossible that there's more to the game than what they experienced. I consider these types worse than any troll/'pro' reviewer.

Saurian pointed this out as well regarding Transformers Devastation, a fantastic action game, utterly destroyed by trolls and fans alike for no reason.

As for the genre, it'll probably die for real, becoming more and more action RPG I'd guess.
The only thing left to do is go back to the past and play all the classics until we drop dead.

13DMC5 reviews and expectations Empty Re: DMC5 reviews and expectations on Tue Mar 05, 2019 2:41 am

KSubzero1000


D-Rank
@Gregorinho wrote:I do think it's a shame though that so much of the finer detail that the developers worked hard on will be lost on the masses because they won't even know it's there. The result of this could be that the general opinion of DMC 5 is that it's just another hack and slash game that couldn't possibly live up to GoW, and if that happens, what would be next for the series? Worse yet, what would be next for the genre?

That's a fair point and I agree it is a shame that so many details are so often left unaddressed, although I can think of several caveats to this.

The first is that you can't forcefully educate people who don't want to be educated in the first place. The vast majority of players want to squeeze the maximum amount of enjoyment for the minimum amount of effort out of games, and I don't think there's any way to get around this. Let me give you an example. You said you're an MGS fan, correct? Do you remember the in-game tutorials available from the main menu in MGS3 giving detailed explanations of the game's various systems and mechanics? And yet despite all this, I've lost count of how many times I've witnessed people being completely unaware of the stalking mechanic (D-Pad), for example. If people can't even be bothered to click on a bullet point in the main menu, I seriously doubt they would be willing to retain that information if it had been brought up in a more informative review.

The second is that information overload can sometimes be off-putting to the uninformed reader / listener, even the open-minded one. There was a Nintendo Direct a few years ago with in-depth explanations of the numerous systems of Xenoblade Chronicles 2. But the overwhelming consensus afterwards seemed to be "This is way too complex" and a lot of folks lost interest in the game as a result. If someone only has a very superficial understanding of character action games, it probably won't do any good to bombard them with complex info before they even had a chance to get accustomed to the basic controls. Not making use of MAX-ACT or knowing how to jump cancel on your first playthrough of DMC4 is pretty normal, I would say. I certainly didn't do either of those when I first played the game 10 years ago. Doesn't mean all hope is lost forever.

The third is that score aggregate don't necessarily dictate the long-term popular reception of a game. Best example would obviously be DmC. Plenty of initially ignored cult classics with devoted followings out there as well.

The fourth and most depressing is that the golden days of the character action genre are probably behind us. Industry trends come and go, and I don't think any of us or any individual media outlet can change that. But there are plenty of other genres and franchises that are going through a similar phase. I'm a huge fan of classic fixed camera survival horror games like REmake or SH2, and those have been almost entirely replaced by uninspired first-person jumpscare nonsense. DOOM is basically the only old-school arcade-style singleplayer linear FPS on the market right now. Pure arcade racers like F-Zero have gone poof. I can't remember when the last AAA turn-based JRPG came out before Octopath Traveler. Classic stealth games like MGS or SC:CT have almost disappeared as well, despite Hitman still hanging in there somehow. I know several japanese shmup fans (Cave & Treasure stuff, for example) who are slowly coming to terms with the fact that their genre peaked during the 360 era.

Now, it pains me to type all that because I'm very disappointed in the current creative stagnation of the industry. Collectibles-filled open world games, walking sims and heavily scripted ND-style third-person action-adventure games usually bore me to tears. But at the end of the day, it is what it is and it's probably best to accept that. Our classics aren't going anywhere, and there is still some new stuff to get excited about. Transformers Devastation wasn't that long ago, DMCV is just around the corner, and Bayonetta 3 will be there before we know it. Could be worse.

The way I see it, rising development costs lead to publishers becoming increasingly risk-adverse, which leads to consumers becoming more and more complacent and set in their ways, which in turn leads to journalists focusing on the apathetic majority as their target audience. Would I like to see more informative reviews written by people who are genuinely passionate about the genre? Absolutely. But I don't think it would make that much of a difference overall. It is a niche genre and will probably always remain a niche genre.


I understand that this is a hot button topic for many, but arguing with idiots on Twitter, GameFAQs or Reddit is a complete waste of time if you ask me. People just double down on their positions and nothing ever gets solved.

14DMC5 reviews and expectations Empty Re: DMC5 reviews and expectations on Tue Mar 05, 2019 8:40 am

Royta/Raeng

Royta/Raeng
Admin
Don't worry, this doesn't make you unpopular. The big problem I (and a lot here I feel) have is that modern journalists aren't up to the task. It is very clear that they barely finished a title, with modern editorials even posting "should reviewers beat games to propperly review them" making headlines. The corruption of these reviews is also an issue.

With reviews having such a big influence on sales, with a 4/10 basically meaning a title is dead on arrival, we're seeing companies like Capcom making the statement that instead of making quality games their metric will now be "review scores". This is incredibily dangerous as this basically reduces games to checklists of what modern reviewers enjoy and what they project to their readers and fans. Leading to titles that on the surface are great, but absolutely fall apart upon closer inspection like indeed God of War 2018 but also already Resident Evil 2 Remake. Saying reviews are just someone's opinion is technically true, but also downplays the impact wholesale.

This wouldn't be a big problem even then if reviewers, especially companies, were transparant and consistent with who was writing, but that's not the case either. Kotaku infamous, due to deadline issues, forced their writer Jason Schreier, known for his lack of interest in JRPGs, to review Xenoblade Chronicles 2. The result was a disaster. In a perfect world, a review first starts with a few questions on what type of gamer you are and then follows up with a review catered to that style of person, but that's impossible.

In terms of completion percentage, it's a mixed bag. 10% of NGII's players beat the title on Master Ninja, which is a pretty big number I feel. This was at the tipping point of the casual market being opened up with the Wii and gaming becoming more 'mainstream' and accepted, so I can imagine the number being lower if it had launched let's say a year later. But this isn't a point I feel, as market shouldn't cater to a singular audience.

Currently we have companies fighting for a single huge audience, namely the casual consumer who don't finish games but are more as you noted "content tourists". They hop on what's popular, play it for a few hours or days, and move on to the next shiny thing. I know two in real life. The problem with this is that there's a big amount of smaller audiences sitting still, something we saw happen with Dishonored, Outlast and Hitman. There were ignored fanbases present that had nothing to play, and suddenly did. Sure the games didn't make billions in the bank, but they made money: profit. There was a whole consumer base waiting for something to buy, that was being ignored. Meanwhile studios were too busy making losses on focusing their entire yearly production fighting for the same audience, high risk high reward, but it rarely paid off. Again on the other side we had Xcom making money with its niche audience, Dark Souls making higher profit margins with its 2 million copies sold than Tomb Raider's 10+ million etc.

It's very similar to the infamous "pasta saus" story of Howard Moskowitz. He noted, when working at Pepsi that there wasn't a "perfect pepsi", only "perfect pepsis". You can read more about that here: https://www.chargebee.com/blog/saas-customer-segmentation-theres-no-perfect-pepsi/

But the general gist is that you can't make a perfect for everyone product, but you can make multiple products that together please all the audiences. Capcom, Ubisoft and Nintendo all used to do this, but the former two resigned it sadly in the hopes of quick money gains with singular big titles - a construction that is barely sustainable at this point.

Regarding videos like Matthews or articles like mine, the big advantage we have is that we can take our time and that we aren't reviewers or make reviews. We're critics. There's a big difference, in that the reviewer's task is to inform a consumer if they should buy the title yes or no. A critic's job is to analyze a title, give insight and more. We also have the advantage of not having a single meaningful deadline, while reviews are basically a 'race to the finish'. Though far from a fan of his work, Jay-Z was absolutely right when he said this: https://twitter.com/paigebrittany/status/837822400175702020

It's impossible, yes, but they have to if they want to make the money from ad-revenue while the topic is hot.

Bottom of the line is though, the market has shifted. What was once a market ruled by nerds that made games because they too loved games (as evident with Final Fantasy being made by a bunch of Dragon Quest addicts), is now a place where creativity goes to die in favor of CEO's making bank.

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15DMC5 reviews and expectations Empty Re: DMC5 reviews and expectations on Tue Mar 05, 2019 9:19 pm

KSubzero1000


D-Rank
@Royta/Raeng wrote:
Bottom of the line is though, the market has shifted.

Yeah, I can see where you're coming from and I agree with the above. The typical modern games don't appeal to me to the same degree that older games do either. But I also try to keep an open mind and look at the positive side of things whenever possible - you mentioned GoW 2018 and RE2make, and I found a lot to like in both of those games despite lamenting the lack of design purity that their predecessors have.

As far as to who's responsible for this, I think there's an unfortunate feedback loop at play between company executives, developers, journalists and players. But (and perhaps this is where I would disagree with you) I also think that journalists and devs are by far the least offensive elements out of all of these, and yet they are more often than not the first ones caught in the crossfire, which I don't think is very reasonable.

Company executives are the biggest culprits as far as I'm concerned - They're the ones who mismanage franchises, who alienate talented developers, who green-light hugely expensive but creatively bankrupt AAA games aimed at the large casual audience at the expense of smaller projects aimed at dedicated audiences, who push for anti-consumer business models, who cancel promising projects at the last minute, etc... Of course, difficult decisions have to be made from time to time when you're at the helm of big corporations. But I would argue that the average company executive has a lot more blood on their hands than the average uninformed mainstream reviewer, despite only receiving a portion of the same flak directly.

I certainly think there would be room for improvement with the way reviews are being conducted. In theory, I would like to see media outlets get rid of numerical scores entirely, always publish reviews in tandem (one by a dedicated fan of the genre / franchise and one by a more casual player) that would end in simple recommendations, as well as commission long-form articles by independent critics who would try to shine a more analytical light long after the dust has settled. In practice however, this doesn't seem particularly feasible. And so I find it easier to just ignore sites like IGN altogether and side-step all the bickering and mindless antagonism that tends to plague various social media platforms whenever the latest "controversy" happens. Which never seems to accomplish much except fostering widespread resentment.


Anyway, I hope the DMCV reviews won't be too objectionable this time around. :)

16DMC5 reviews and expectations Empty Re: DMC5 reviews and expectations on Wed Mar 06, 2019 1:41 am

Gregorinho


D-Rank
@KSubzero1000 wrote: You said you're an MGS fan, correct? Do you remember the in-game tutorials available from the main menu in MGS3 giving detailed explanations of the game's various systems and mechanics? And yet despite all this, I've lost count of how many times I've witnessed people being completely unaware of the stalking mechanic (D-Pad), for example. If people can't even be bothered to click on a bullet point in the main menu, I seriously doubt they would be willing to retain that information if it had been brought up in a more informative review.

I do remember those, yes. You're probably right in suggesting many players won't bother to research the mechanics through the in-game tutorials, and wouldn't benefit from a reviewer explaining them. I think it can be a disservice not to mention things like this in reviews though, especially for a game like MGS3. For example, shooting out a guard's radio would prevent him from calling for backup, dogs wouldn't attack you if you were wearing the crocodile cap, and destroying ammo caches with TNT reduced how much ammo enemies had for their primary weapons. These are just a few examples out of many, too. As far as I know this level of detail was pretty much unheard of back in 2004, and I think it'd be worth mentioning in a review. You could argue that it's the developers fault for keeping so many mechanics a secret!

@KSubzero1000 wrote: If someone only has a very superficial understanding of character action games, it probably won't do any good to bombard them with complex info before they even had a chance to get accustomed to the basic controls. Not making use of MAX-ACT or knowing how to jump cancel on your first playthrough of DMC4 is pretty normal, I would say. I certainly didn't do either of those when I first played the game 10 years ago. Doesn't mean all hope is lost forever.

I completely agree - I didn't really make use of any of those advanced mechanics for my first playthroughs of DMC3 or 4. However, if these sorts of techniques are never referred to in a review, how can a player use the review to make a truly informed decision on whether or not to purchase an action game, where the core gameplay makes up so much of the appeal? How would I know if DMC has any sort of depth/complexity/skill ceiling, or if it's completely brainless and disengaging?

Raeng mentioned that reviewers and critics are not the same, and generally speaking a reviewer looks to tell a gamer "yes, buy this" or "no, don't buy this". I'd agree that a critique is much more insightful and analytical, but in my opinion you can't review a game properly if you're recommending/shunning a game without assessing and discussing why. Even if a review is an opinion piece, I'd still expect some justification from a reviewer for any points they make.

17DMC5 reviews and expectations Empty Re: DMC5 reviews and expectations on Wed Mar 06, 2019 8:35 am

Royta/Raeng

Royta/Raeng
Admin
> RE2make/GoW2018
There is a lot to like in the titles, but you can also clearly note that they weren't made for the same audience as before and that production costs shifted their balance accordingly. Just playing Resident Evil 3 and comparing its fantastic Gunpowder system to this by-the-numbers crafting is just a basic example, or the changes to Mister X, easy of combat, bosses being more one-note. God of War suffered from similar problems in its mechanics, with most of the budget going towards a - imo - very by the numbers tale.

> the guilty party
I'd put developers at the bottom of those who are to blame, but they are still a guilty party. I don't know where it comes from, but many who work in the field (this also goes for journalists) aren't happy they work on games, they see it as a stepping stone. They don't want to make what are, let's be a bit harsh, 'children's toys', they want to make film, art. This is what leads developers down that cinematic route. But with most developers it is always hard to see where the opinion begins and marketing ends, so you never really know how or what.

Journalists I feel are still a big, big point. For two reasons:
A) they influence the market to a big degree;
B) if their influence is viewed as a negative, they lose their job / contact with that publisher;

It's an infinite loop, if they aren't honest. Another part being that, like some developers as noted before, they really dislike the direction of their craft. Most journalists in this sector are either gamers that couldn't get a job or journalists that couldn't get a job - there are very few well trained journalists that specialize in gaming.

Though should be taken with a huge grain of salt, since the man obviously has something against the sector now, Vito Gesualdi, former journalist for Destructoid and several other publications, had this to say before leaving:

"The few journalists I saw around only ever had one topic on their mind: “gamers.” They talked about how stupid the gamers were, how much they hated their audience, and how excited they were at the prospect of the industry leaving those losers in the dust. They honestly thought smartphones and titles like Telltale’s Walking Dead were going to usher in some grand gaming renaissance, making gamers an irrelevant sector of the market. It was crazy talk.

They really did hate that label though, and still do. The thought of being called a gamer made them recoil: they wanted to be called “game enthusiasts” or some dumb shit. I remember pointing out how great the gaming communities were, how I saw people of all creeds and colors hanging out at conventions like PAX, giving money to charity, games really bringing people together. All they could think about was that Dickwolves comic and how PAX was really just a haven for rape culture (lol)."


Paints are hard picture. Not to mention that Google's alogrithm is just botched, making controversial headlines the only way to make bank. The only holy grail in journalism imo are the rare magazines like Edge, the only way those can still thrive is through quality - so they have to give the best that they can give.

Sorry if I come off as a bit negative. The conclusion for me is the same as yours though when it comes to reviewers: just find one that aligns with you. I tend to stick to EasyAllies for instance.

> Without discussing why
They generally can't, or won't. For very easy reasons, namely that they aren't good writers. Most of the time they don't know why they don't like a thing since they aren't analytically strong, so they make up reasons. Like God of War: Ascension being bad since the 'formula is tired', instead of the objective conclusion that it was a rushed underdeveloped product that took major steps back in terms of design.

My biggest gripe with modern reviewers is that they start with a conclusion, and then build up on that. A review's goal should be - imo - to let the reader know more about the title and form his opinion on it.

Example:

Reviewer: Devil's Third is a mess of a game, with ugly textures, bad framerate and boring gameplay that will please no one.
***
What they should say: Devil's Third has noticable problems in terms of performance with a framerate going from 20 to 40 frames per second and low-resolution textures, in part due to its troubled development. In terms of combat it offers a combination of third-and first person shooting, with some slicing in the middle. Sadly, while an option, the shooting is far more potent and safe.

The latter is far more open ended, descriptive, gives reasons but also doesn't judge players that did like it. It doesn't use the word "bad", it just describes the frame-rate and textures and lets the reader conclude if this is something he can live with yes or no.

http://stinger.actieforum.com

18DMC5 reviews and expectations Empty Re: DMC5 reviews and expectations on Wed Mar 06, 2019 5:21 pm

Royta/Raeng

Royta/Raeng
Admin
Note that, on topic, the reviews are in and they are really good.
Destructoid 10
IGN 9.5
Gamespot 9
PushSquare 9
Press Start 9
Easy Allies 9
http://Videogamer.com 9
Gamesradar 4.5/5
Game Informer 8.5
Eurogamer "Recommended"

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19DMC5 reviews and expectations Empty Re: DMC5 reviews and expectations on Wed Mar 06, 2019 7:22 pm

Gregorinho


D-Rank
That's very high praise - maybe even GOTY contender material.

I'm watching IGN's video review at the moment and the reviewer seems really passionate about the game. He's already referred to jump cancelling within the first minute (although predictably he doesn't explain what it means), and the gameplay included does make use of a good variety of mechanics. If the reviewer is the one who provided the gameplay, he looks to be pretty decent for a journalist. Great to see!

If anybody is thinking of watching it, it's worth noting that there are story and gameplay related spoilers. Watch at your own risk!

20DMC5 reviews and expectations Empty Re: DMC5 reviews and expectations on Wed Mar 06, 2019 9:18 pm

Royta/Raeng

Royta/Raeng
Admin
IGN went as far as saying it was the best game in the genre though, which feels ... a bit uninformed (not surprising). I have to say I'm really surprised by the love for such an old-style game. Here's hoping we'll end up liking it too! I'm picking it up on friday but won't be able to play it until saturday.

http://stinger.actieforum.com

21DMC5 reviews and expectations Empty Re: DMC5 reviews and expectations on Wed Mar 06, 2019 11:35 pm

Birdman


Moderator
IGN went as far as saying it was the best game in the genre though, which feels ... a bit uninformed (not surprising).
I doubt they remember, or even know half the games in the genre, though they MIGHT be referring to titles in recent memory, which in that case they might have a point.

I'm picking it up on friday but won't be able to play it until saturday.
I'll be questioning you extensively on V's gameplay, so you better git gud fast.

22DMC5 reviews and expectations Empty Re: DMC5 reviews and expectations on Wed Mar 06, 2019 11:39 pm

Gregorinho


D-Rank
I'll be picking the Steelbook version up on Friday. Already got pizza and DMC penciled in for the evening - can't wait!

23DMC5 reviews and expectations Empty Re: DMC5 reviews and expectations on Thu Mar 07, 2019 8:10 am

Royta/Raeng

Royta/Raeng
Admin
> git gud fast so you can question me
Depends. NGII when? :D

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24DMC5 reviews and expectations Empty Re: DMC5 reviews and expectations on Thu Mar 07, 2019 8:35 am

Birdman


Moderator
Oooh...you little...

Watching some V gameplay, I'm sure I'm going to pick this up because I can't resist that gameplay and not knowing exactly how it works. It just occurred to me that V must not have jump cancelling, and it seems his demons can't jump either (as a command I mean). There must be a way to link their attacks.



25DMC5 reviews and expectations Empty Re: DMC5 reviews and expectations on Thu Mar 07, 2019 10:04 am

Royta/Raeng

Royta/Raeng
Admin
Ladies and Gentlemen, we got'm: https://www.cgmagonline.com/reviews/devil-may-cry-5-ps4-review/

Anyone got a bingo? :D

http://stinger.actieforum.com

26DMC5 reviews and expectations Empty Re: DMC5 reviews and expectations on Thu Mar 07, 2019 10:21 am

Birdman


Moderator
You now need to pay me compensation for mental damages.

27DMC5 reviews and expectations Empty Re: DMC5 reviews and expectations on Thu Mar 07, 2019 1:15 pm

Royta/Raeng

Royta/Raeng
Admin
Luckily you can treat yourself.

http://stinger.actieforum.com

28DMC5 reviews and expectations Empty Re: DMC5 reviews and expectations on Thu Mar 07, 2019 3:45 pm

KSubzero1000


D-Rank
@Gregorinho wrote:if these sorts of techniques are never referred to in a review, how can a player use the review to make a truly informed decision on whether or not to purchase an action game, where the core gameplay makes up so much of the appeal? How would I know if DMC has any sort of depth/complexity/skill ceiling, or if it's completely brainless and disengaging?

You're correct that some players wouldn't be able to make an informed purchasing decision in that case. But even though I don't have any data to back this up, I assume that this would only affect a small statistical minority within another small statistical minority. Even if 10% of the overall player base are action purists like us who enjoy diving deep and catching S ranks and replaying these games (which is a rather generous estimate, I feel), how many of those are also not already aware of the DMC series to the point of losing out on the experience entirely because a mainstream review didn't go into enough details? 10% of those 10%?

I think there is an argument to be made that younger players who didn't grow up during the golden days of the 6th gen would need to be informed of this sort of stuff. They represent the "untapped potential" demographic, so to speak. But that argument would have been much more relevant back when paper magazines were the main source of information around. Nowadays, I think that with all the YouTube videos, forums and other social media platforms, dedicated players have plenty of opportunities to proselytize their niche interest to the wider audience. Even something as simple as a Bloody Palace combo gif making the rounds on twitter is often enough to catch people's attention. Next thing you know, they'll grab DMC5 on sale in a few months "just to check it out", they'll be taken aback by the previously unknown possibility spaces, mechanical agency and replay value, they'll buy some other heavily discounted titles, they'll fall in love with the genre, and they'll start bickering about IGN like the rest of us.

TL;DR: Don't underestimate the impact of word of mouth, basically.


@Royta/Raeng wrote:
Sorry if I come off as a bit negative. The conclusion for me is the same as yours though when it comes to reviewers: just find one that aligns with you. I tend to stick to EasyAllies for instance.

Perfectly understandable. There are several media outlets I actively try to avoid nowadays after they published one hit-piece or blatantly uninformed article too many. People working backwards from their conclusion is a pet peeve of mine as well, although that's certainly not limited to video game reviewers. So I definitely understand the frustration and negativity.

But ultimately, the "out of sight, out of mind"-mantra is working wonders for me. Life's too short to waste it getting upset and arguing with frustrating but ultimately harmless strangers on the internet. And also, I feel like the well has been poisoned by now, you know?

Since I don't really seek out reviews on my own, I only knew EasyAllies from their heartwarming E3 reaction videos. Out of curiosity, I checked out their DMC5 review and this is a pretty good example of a perfectly competent review in my book. Draws attention to some things that would easily fly under a lot of people's radars but doesn't obfuscate the casual reader with a deluge of details. Writing has a nice flow, too. Good stuff. I might check out more of their content in the future.


PS: My DMC5 copy arrived early but like so many games nowadays, it requires a 3.4 GB update plus an additional 6.5 GB download for the Live Action Cutscenes DLC. The PS4 also got a new firmware update today. Something to keep in mind for those of you with slow internet connections. You might want to start the process as soon as possible.

29DMC5 reviews and expectations Empty single tear people on Mon Jul 08, 2019 1:20 pm

Zenyn

Zenyn
D-Rank
@KSubzero1000 wrote:
PS: My DMC5 copy arrived early but like so many games nowadays, it requires a 3.4 GB update plus an additional 6.5 GB download for the Live Action Cutscenes DLC. The PS4 also got a new firmware update today. Something to keep in mind for those of you with slow internet connections. You might want to start the process as soon as possible.

Being detached with current standards since the "Deal with it!" New Deal, this gave me some gist.
Thanks.
Water is leaking from my eyes, do I hear myself laughing? It's jolly fine to be the crazy hermit.

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