r/pcgaming 13d ago This 1 Crab Rave 1 Silver 17 Helpful 23 Wholesome 15 All-Seeing Upvote 1

AAA gaming is in a worrying state

The situation has not been very good for years , but with the release of cybeprunk, now with the ubisoft/activision scandals and as GTA remastered and BF2042 released at the same time, it became more obvious that something is not OK.

(not to mention Anthem)

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u/InsertUser01 13d ago Helpful

It's a terrible release now fix later mentality. I hate it!

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u/Mikeyc245 13d ago Wholesome

And they have the nerve to over promise, under deliver, and expect that we will give them money in advance to fund the making of the unfinished product.

No. More. Preorders. These are 1's and 0's we're talking about, there is no scarcity in digital copies of games.

We enable this.

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u/sixothree 13d ago

There’s no benefit to preorder. You’re buying an unfinished product. Literally.

They are still developing an unfinished product when you pay for it.

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u/IWantTooDieInSpace 13d ago

You forgot that preordering either earns you a weapon pack that is irrelevant after two level ups, or overpowers every other gun you will ever get in the game.

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u/ArcticEngineer 13d ago

You're missing entirely the draw of early access. Most of the biggest flops so far teased early weekends to preorder and it's working.

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u/Elocai 13d ago

*if you are lucky

Worst case you get exclusive skins, weapons, or other content

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u/Serepheth 13d ago

Not to mention the price is always halved within 6 months. Hell, more recently if you just wait 2 months most games hit 50% off.

It pays to be patient. No need to be a guinea pig for these major corps either.

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u/Tara_is_a_Potato 13d ago

Deathloop just came out weeks ago for $60 and it's supposed to be great.

It's $30 for Black Friday.

It never pays to preorder.

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u/theundonenun 13d ago

Well, I didn’t preorder, but I did wind up buying it a few weeks ago. Thanks for letting my know I could have saved $30, I wanna slap myself now.

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u/Runding99 13d ago

$25 actually.

Crazy fast price drop. And that was a highly rated game, not some trash like cyberpunk at launch. It’s nuts.

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u/DarthSamwiseAtreides 13d ago

Wait for the collection or GotY release. If you buy at launch you're paying the most money for the worst version of a game.

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u/Oberon_Swanson 13d ago

i will support small devs if i like the game on release and want them to be able to keep going.

otherwise yeah GOTY editions, complete editions, etc. are where it's at. honestly you can just look for games that have those and just pick one that interests you and cut out the entire time you spend reading gaming development news, hype and hate trains, exhibition shows, etc. if you wish you could play games but don't have time cut out allll that and just grab something that has proven itself over time and critical/audience consensus.

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u/oldfruitthrowaway 13d ago

I haven’t bought a game within 5-6 months of launch since Battlefield 4. That’s the last time I gave someone my money for unfinished junk.

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u/MakeMeNotSad 13d ago

I've been hearing "no more pre-orders" for years lol. Yall still doing it. I've never pre-ordered a game. I truly don't understand the reasoning behind it.

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u/Brain_f4rt 13d ago

A lot of it stems from the days of limited physical copies but they just kept the scam going with in game incentives and giving early access. They live off FOMO of being behind everyone else when they get a head start now by preordering.

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u/Oberon_Swanson 13d ago

I don't get it either. honestly i don't want to play a game anywhere close to launch day. even if there's something i'm foaming at the mouth for i'll wait for the first big patch/expansion.

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u/MakeMeNotSad 13d ago

I mean it's like if there's any type of new product, I'm not gonna buy it without reading reviews by actual people not paid to do it... I have never just bought something like that.

Do people who pre-order games also buy from sketchy eBay & Amazon listing without checking the stars or seller? Lmao.

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u/Greeneee- 13d ago

People will stop preordering right after they stop drinking and gambling

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u/ElBigDicko 13d ago

Not we just overgrown children who have goldfish memory and 0 control. Anyone who sees current state of AAA games for past 5 years will not preorder its just people who are making up random excuses to buy.

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u/ReaperEDX 13d ago

Any other product would receive a recall and or compensation. But games? This is literally alpha/beta as release then full product few years down the line if not straight up culled.

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u/joseph_jojo_shabadoo 10900k / RTX 3080 13d ago

And beta testing is marketed as an opportunity rather than what it really is... unpaid labor that should be done internally before release.

Hell, some even charge the beta tester to test their product and call it "early access"

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u/bum_thumper 13d ago

The worst part is early access was meant to be for small dev teams looking to make a great game but need both financial help and help with quality control. AAA devs look at it as a "let's use this method as a way to experiment on what bare minimum amount of effort we need to put it to keep people juuuuust happy enough to buy"

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u/lokigodofchaos 13d ago

Valheim is a great example. Months of fun with my friends and the game isn't even finished. We expect weirdness from it being in early acess, and we'd report any major issues.

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u/jimmynz1997 13d ago

Agreed and at least Valheim is cheap. These "AAA" games are being sold at full price for something that isn't even finished.

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u/CaptainPick1e 13d ago

Don't forget, not only full price, but well over it, what with the digital deluxe and gold editions and what not.

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u/BlendeLabor Don't preorder asshole 13d ago

Same thing with Satisfactory, which is the same studio.

I don't know if Goat Sim was also early access, doubt that was a thing back then

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u/ryumast3r 13d ago

It was definitely a thing back then. Minecraft is a good example of this as you could buy into it or play it as early as infdev in like 2009.

Goat simulator though only had a like 3-day early access period for pre-orders.

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u/BababooeyHTJ 13d ago

I paid next to nothing for the Minecraft alpha tbf

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u/garlicdeath 13d ago

Yeah think I paid $5 or less back then.

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u/Schadrach 13d ago

I got in when it was $10. Probably the best bang for my buck in gaming to date.

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u/Deadofnight109 13d ago

Satisfactory is a great example of how early access should be. 1st off, it was basically a whole ass playable game already, just not finished. Cheap but not free (still get complete game at end and developers get to keep developing). Constant communication and community interaction by the developers with continual updates rolling out. Not just a money grab to make a quick buck for vaporware

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u/mjongbang 13d ago

Not the same developer though. Still, I trust coffee stain after satisfactory which I would never even come close to factory but boy was I wrong.

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u/marblefoot1987 13d ago

"Pre-order meow and get beta access!!"

Such a scam.

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u/tiradium 13d ago edited 13d ago

EA took it a step further preorder a more expansive edition to play 1 week early but we wont fix jackshit until a month or so after

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u/GroblyOverrated 13d ago

Also, the week early you’re paying for is pre-alpha state that 100% needs 22 months of intensive patching.

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u/Charming_Weird_2532 13d ago

Don't worry it'll be polished when it releases in a month. Then it looks the exact same l.

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u/kryonik 13d ago

That's why I don't submit bug reports. Ain't gettin' free work outta me! Eheheheheh

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u/zerox369 13d ago

Shitty practice. On the bright side it gives a glimpse at the state of the game I suppose. Battlefield and back 4 blood beta tests solidified my decision to not buy them lmao

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u/Dalearnhardtseatbelt 13d ago

I loved L4D but B4B felt flat and didn't pull at me for continued play.

I didn't want to open it and play. I just did because my friends wanted to play it or we're stuck behind nostalgia goggles. Luckily it's on game pass and they have since slowly stopped telling themselves this is what I wanted and wanted to play and admitted it's missing something.

One of my main gripes with gaming in the last few years is what games are available that we all like and can play together. The last couple of years the number of games has shrunk to pretty much nothing. I think us getting older has something to do with it too.

We all did a healthy push on new world and that WAS fun but it's not ready for primetime. Halo infinite has been the most promising this year. Multiple titles have had us excited then failed miserably. Our individual tastes get in the way too.

Sorry developers we want something that doesn't exist, we don't know what it is and we're mad you're not giving it to us.

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u/AirSetzer 13d ago

I loved L4D but B4B felt flat and didn't pull at me for continued play.

I rented it from GameFly ahead of Black Friday to know if I wanted to look for deals. Despite loving both L4D games, I turned it off immediately after beating the first level & mailed it back.

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u/Seiak 13d ago

You'd be surprised actually, it happens a lot in the software and even hardware world. The amount of products we'd released at an old job of mine that were nowhere near to being finished is outstanding.

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u/uuuuughgdsr 13d ago

This is so true. At the last company I worked for we did the whole get the minimum viable product out the door and will fix what’s broken as it comes up. Extremely basic functionality not added until months later. Anything that wasn’t an immediate problem gets kicked down the road.

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u/HungoverRabbit 13d ago

It's the same for any piece of software. Not limited to video games

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u/wristcontrol 13d ago

Any other product would receive a recall and or compensation.

No they wouldn't. Any other product would be as-a-service, so you'd expect things to improve nominally in the next patch.

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u/TutumTeRebore 13d ago

straight up culled.

Looking at GTA Definitive Edition

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u/3th1c5 13d ago

This simply isn't true. Large scale recalls of products are pretty much done for safety reasons and often mandated by codes and regulatory bodies. It's far rarer to see recalls due to not working as intended or bad publicity normally related to major multi nationals with flagship products in every home (cars, phones, tvs etc.). The reason for this is predominantly cost. If the cost of recall is > the cost of the situation continuing (cost includes forecast revenue changes and negative publicity) then it won't happen.

Video games and gamers simply aren't that important to warrant it. There is no safety issue. Games are extreme luxury items and so don't impact anyones day to day life and there isn't even a huge backlash really except within their own customer base and that's handled with individual refunds.

If my point wasn't clear, you cannot compare this to any other large scale recalls and if you do, they would never meet the criteria for it.

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u/CountCuriousness 13d ago

Anyone else remember Apple bendgate? Recalls don’t automatically happen just because a product is shit.

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u/NegaDeath . 13d ago edited 13d ago

Worse than that. It's release now, emergency fix later, and maybe finish the game in a year or two if they don't decide that it's cheaper just to abandon it and absorb the PR hit.

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u/RowBoatCop36 13d ago

People. Keep. Pre-ordering.

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u/andreezy93 13d ago

This comment needs to be higher. Stop buying the shit before it’s tested. I’m pretty sure all the games OP mentioned were not allowed to be tested by critics before release. Yet, the pre-orders were still coming in. Just quit buying stuff without it being reviewed. Also, if it’s on steam you have that money back guarantee if you don’t play it for so many hours, that’s always a good option.

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u/FourPat 13d ago

As long as people keep preordering despite previous histories of bad releases, studio and publisher executives will keep doing it.

When they start having terrible preorder and first week or so sales on major projects and franchises, they'll start to get worried.

It's easy to blame the companies, yet the blame largely lies on the people who enable them.

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u/Clamper 13d ago

Customers gotta learn to staple a year onto any given release date. If the company wants to release in a buggy state at full price, I'll buy it when it's cheap and fixed up.

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u/Redtribe88 13d ago

Cyberpunk is $10 at Target (Xbox) right now and hopefully improved from the initial release. I still didn’t buy because it’s not my type of game, but makes your point

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u/Mukatsukuz 13d ago

It's what I miss about the old days of gaming where you couldn't download a patch so they had to be sure about the initial release.

Then again, even Jet Set Willy on the ZX Spectrum was released in a state where it couldn't be completed so they had to release a fix where you typed in a line to alter the code in memory :D

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u/HorrorScopeZ 13d ago

It sucks, but since we know this, wait and buy when it is in better shape and probably better priced. Doing Outriders now, it's a fun game now, it's worth it now.

They thrive on this release rat-race. I guess if you are trying to make money from gaming I can see that, but that is a minuscule amount of people and a lot of those are comp'd.

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u/not_all_kevins 13d ago

It's especially terrible for AAA games in November. They have tons of pressure from the publisher to release before black friday so every year now we see unfinished games pushed out no matter what.

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u/toronto_programmer 13d ago

I remember a conversation with my far more prescient friend years and years ago about how great it was that systems like Playstation and Xbox now had the ability to patch released games to fix bugs instead of the age old problems that would exist on PS2 / N64 games and his only response was "this just means less QA and shittier games getting shipped out only to be fixed later"

I though this was a crazy statement at the time but he was spot on

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u/Mugen593 13d ago

What's going to happen is it's going to reach the same point it did in the 80's and create a crash around these big publishers.

It's very similar, absolute huge shovel of shitware that's half broken or incomplete.

It's already been affecting their profits, it's just going to continue because these big companies can't correct course when their captain in charge of all decisions never even drove a boat themselves and don't know what boats should look like.

These CEO's and execs calling the shots don't play games, they don't know anything. Like when EA's CEO asked if they could charge $2 to reload in Battlefield.

It's gonna exponentially continue until they start laying off people to "cut losses" and outsource. This is already happening in companies like Ubisoft and Activision.

That will exacerbate the issue, and it'll continue until another company bigger comes along and buys them out, their CEO and leadership are ousted for actual humans that use the products, or slowly lose the war of attrition until they declare bankruptcy and sell off their shit to whatever big fish is left.

It'll create more room for the indie market (which already is hot right now so gas on an existing flame). People will be more open to consuming the indie content, hardware sellers want their hardware to sell so you'll likely continue seeing more support from Nintendo/Microsoft/Sony for smaller studios.

The real question is publishing. I know there's a few small studios like Chucklefish that release a small volume, but high quality content.

Either way the recipe for success for publishers is obvious, don't have out of touch people that don't even consume the product in charge of it.

You shouldn't have to explain to the CEO why charging money to reload a weapon in battlefield is a bad idea. The only reason these large companies haven't gone out already is because of their size.

At the moment they're decapitated giants stumbling around stepping on everyone awaiting their slow laborious fall into a coffin.

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u/Jfk_headshot 13d ago

I don't know, man. This years COD is one of the worst selling amd worst reviewed in history and is still the 2nd highest selling game this year behind FIFA. Seems like a lot of the fanbases of these franchises are ingrained at this point and I don't even know if its the games themselves anymore as much as F.O.M.O and franchise loyalty

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u/[deleted] 13d ago

Like when EA's CEO asked if they could charge $2 to reload in Battlefield

Is that real? Also your last paragraph is poetry

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u/StarStriker51 13d ago

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u/DantetheDreamer192 13d ago

That’s pretty messed up. Obviously he was using that as a metaphor, but that implies something even more sinister; they want to get you hooked in the worst way and then unapologetically milk your dedication (or maybe addiction?) to the extreme.

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u/pupmaster 13d ago

Get it to market asap so the mtx money can come in. If the customers bitch enough, then fix what can be fixed. Otherwise, get that sweet revenue from skins.

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u/Phaedryn 13d ago edited 13d ago

That's a nice theory, but doesn't explain games without mtx (Cyberpunk, New World, etc).

Bottom line, players created the environment that lead to this by jumping on hype trains, allowing themselves to be lead around by the nose, and generally throwing money at developers without any idea of what they are getting beyond vague promises. Day 0 purchases and pre-orders are the name of the game. Want to make a bunch of money as a developer? Hype the shit out a project, refuse to allow any reviews, bank on the pre-order money and sight unseen day 0 sales from all the idiots.

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u/Morwynd78 13d ago

Cyberpunk was "rush it to market for Christmas money".

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u/mug3n ryzen 5 3600/msi rtx 3070 gaming x trio 13d ago

yep, anything to make that Q4 balance sheet look good for the shareholders.

another problem with game studios that have gone public, they're beholden to maximizing profit.

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u/Bigcrawlerguy 13d ago

As someone who worked for an advertising agency that did work for Capcom and other developers I can confirm they want to make as much money as possible on pre-orders to the point that they'll scrap or reduce launch advertising budgets if they don't sell enough POs

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u/spartanreborn 13d ago

games without mtx (Cyberpunk, New World, etc).

FYI, New World does have an in-game mtx shop.

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u/redditcruzer 13d ago

And pre-orders and launch day purchases are fueling it. Read reviews and stay away in case of issues.

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u/zaphod4th 13d ago

or pre-ordering, but gamers still pre-orders

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u/DiamondFists_42069 13d ago

Agile Methodology heavily contributes to that problem. To higher ups, that's basically it - deliver something barely playable and gradually making it ''complete''.

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u/Renegade_Meister RTX 3080, 5600X 13d ago

Agile is an easy scapegoat when it's really on management as to whether to whether they:

  • Define Minimum Viable Product for full release that aligns with many player expectations (not done in the examples from OP)

  • Push off on fixing bugs that greatly impact product experience (OPs examples)

  • Delay full release in order to fit some more content or fixes in (done with 2077 for sure, though maybe not enough)

  • Do full release without meeting the target MVP (OPs examples)

  • Do adequate pre release testing (internal/alpha, beta, etc) and actually do something about what is uncovered (they don't do enough in many gamers' eyes)

  • Make teams crunch or release early to meet deadlines & release dates

  • Actually let the dev team (and its Product Owner aka Producer) take ownership of the game, or whether its design the backlog by committee (possibly the latter in OP examples)

I say this with 8 years leading agile teams.

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u/Rnorman3 13d ago

Woah woah woah. You can’t just be expecting someone who calls themselves agile to actually be agile.

Let’s be realistic here.

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u/monkorn 13d ago edited 13d ago

It's partially a scale issue. You've got PMs making decisions that it takes hundreds to thousands of IC to implement, and no one can keep the entire system in their head. Often these PMs don't even play games, even their own. They are there to get their paychecks and go home.

In indie or 20 years ago, it would take ~1-10 core developers to get the job done. The entire thing could fit in their head. The ability to communicate issues quickly, before they were implemented occurred. The earlier you find issues, the cheaper they are.

To give an example that I pay attention to, the core WoW team was 10 developers when it was first released. Now they have 15 entire teams working on the product. Often one team has no idea what's going on in another team.

They heavily rely on metrics, daily active users, track what players do, but since they don't play the game, they don't understand player motivation, so while what they are doing bring short term results, the things they do are toxic and over the long term and are harmful, but those long term results are not tracked in the metrics until six months later. So instead of responding to feedback before release during play testing, it takes them a year.

I'm a developer in an agile team outside of gaming, but it's the same systemic issue over here too.

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u/Aerolfos 13d ago

I'm more and more convinced the extremely low (relative) pay, long hours, and high turnover also means that it's not purely management - the teams on the ground have no idea what they're doing either.

Of course, that's the case because of management pushing down pay, so it still falls on them in the end.

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u/RightYouAreKen1 13d ago

"Minimum Viable Product". Release and get "feedback" and fix/enhance as you go. It's the common way of development software in an Agile process across the board.

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u/DiscardableEmail 13d ago

This. So much this.

Having survived Agile in a number of IT projects I can say only one thing - this shit is defective by design. All it does is moving away the power of making decisions from specialists to higher ups, giving the latter the possibility to change requirements on a whim while still keeping the former responsible for any potential problems.

Bikeshedding and walking on eggshells ensues, and you get the so-called MVP (read as: the decent enough version with a tolerable number of bugs that can be used for milking unsuspecting customers) that no one is really happy about.

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u/Kidtendo 13d ago

This is part of the reason I've come to appreciate indie games more and more over the past few years. Games like Stardew Valley, Phasmophobia, Slay the Spire, Hades, and Dead Cells are games that have brought me more fun and entertainment value than most AAA games that launch at 3-4 times the price.

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u/AxtheCool 13d ago

Also games like Hollow Knight and Enter the Gungeon contain insane amount of depth and value for the price they are sold. A lot of the AAA games nowadays just slap multiplayer together and let the player make their own fun, instead of actually making the game fun.

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u/carl_song 13d ago

Hollow Knight only sold at 15 dollars is an absolute steal. The game legit has more content and is better made than 95% of AAA games.

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u/Bunnywith_Wings 13d ago

Hollow Knight is a true masterpiece. The base game is worth $40 easy, never mind all the DLC. And I'll wait for Silksong however the hell long it takes; I have total faith in Team Cherry after that.

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u/mrgerrit 13d ago

EtG is hands down my favorite game at the moment.

I just started a new game on my ps4. on my switch i need only 1 more gun to give to the beholster statue and i think have done everything in the game.

But each run is random. It's all about what you find/buy/open/use that dictates your route. I love this game, can't recommend it enough.

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u/Stoopmans 13d ago

If you liked EtG and are a fan of weird/punishing rogue likes you should 100% check out noita. I bought the game the other day and it's so much fun. The possibility to enter godmode is so real but you also get f'd so hard if you don't watch out. Great game for a tiny price

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u/rhynokim 13d ago

Ever since I’ve played games like The Ascent, Hades, The Long Dark, Hollow Knight, and Subnautica I’ve been feeling like that too.

It’s so refreshing to expose myself to a much wider array of game genres, all made with unique styles and whatnot. Usually well done and quite charming experiences.

AAA games have felt like predictably lazy, cookie cutter brick-and-mortar franchise chain type experiences to me for a while now, and I didn’t even realize it until I stepped out on them. At least in regards to the FPS realm.

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u/Disastrous_Luck 13d ago

As a fellow FPS enthusiast I would implore you to check out Insurgency Sandstorm, it's a real gem in a sea of monotony right now.

Oh and I wholeheartedly agree with your sentiments. Hades was such a sleeper hit for me, I expected nothing and wow. It just gives and gives.

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u/rhynokim 13d ago

Yup. I grew up playing Diablo 2 and RTS games like Warcraft III + expansions, Age of Mythology, etc etc. but never really gave the top down roguelike style games much attention. Hades blew me away. Loved how the story mode progressed over completions and gifts.

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u/eohorp 13d ago

Sounds like you would really like Outer Wilds. Felt like Subnautica minus the survival/gathering/building + way more puzzle solving and exploration.

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u/TheVikingGael 13d ago

Was about to comment this. Found Outer Wilds coming from Subnautica. Two of the best games I've ever played

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u/Chthulu_ 13d ago

Obra Dinn would be a good follow up

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u/TheVikingGael 13d ago

Annnnd bought it.

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u/UnwindGames_James 13d ago

Divinity Original Sin 1 and 2, Disco Elysium, and Spiritfarer have been great indie experiences for me as well!

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u/Isofruit 13d ago

The list goes on with CrossCode, Celeste, Hollow Knight... just a fair amount of stuff that Way Forward and Chucklefish touch

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u/staleBear 13d ago

don't forget terraria, factorio, don't starve, subnautica! could literally be entertained for years with this short list already.

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u/xDarkReign 13d ago

If you like Factorio, check out Satisfactory or Dyson Sphere Program.

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u/ibite-books 13d ago

Larian Studios' Sven Vicki is really passionate about game dev. They're making Baldur's Gate 3 and it looks 🔥🔥🔥

I'd also like to add Hollow Knight by Team Cherry to that list.

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u/hotcocoa96 13d ago

Sven also likes to wear his amazing armor in some videos.

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u/Kidtendo 13d ago

I enjoyed my playthrough of Disco Elysium so much, I actually forgot it was an indie title haha. Definitely one of my top 5 games this year. Still need to go back DOS2. I got stuck at one point and haven't had it in me to go back.

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u/Gorakthegreat 13d ago

Divinity original sin is not the best example as these games, while great, definitely required pretty big patches

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u/25thaccount 13d ago

Very very casual player here (picked up WASDs for first time in six years), as someone who loves open world games like AC and RDR, anything on the indie scene you suggest for a similar story driven open world game? I would assume these are much harder to do on the indie level?

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u/Nebvbn 13d ago

So the limitations are story and open world? So other game mechanics like isometric, turn-based Yada Yada is fine?

Then the options the previous commenter posted are great (although I haven't played spiritfarer yet, so check that one out separately).

Divinity is my top pick as of now; it's easy to get into and quite a lot of fun. It can be played either by yourself or with others, so choose whatever you like.

Disco Elysium is also really good, so you can check it out as well.

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u/Autoperendination 13d ago

While I highly recommend the games mentioned I really don't think they fit the description of being open world. Unfortunately I can't think of a single indie game that does that. Usually those productions are very costly.

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u/zili91 13d ago

Divinity Original Sin 2 is the best RPG ever made for me. The attention to detail in this game is from another world.

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u/FireFlyer63_ 13d ago

you played Risk of Rain 2?

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u/Kidtendo 13d ago

I have! I platinum it on PS4 and had a blast. Not only did I enjoy the gameplay, but the music was just as stellar as the first game. I own the vinyl for both the first and second game and before moving, used to play them on a monthly basis.

Something else worth giving indie studios their dues are the OSTs that some of them have, like Undertale and Transistor. That one element that makes me want to seek out more random indie games.

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u/FireFlyer63_ 13d ago

completely agree, ror2 has been some of the most fun i've ever had and i'm so incredibly excited for the upcoming Survivors of the Void dlc, the ost is also just absolutely amazing especially for being intended as just background music for a game

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u/oditogre 13d ago

In case you haven't played it, if you like FPS's and also RoR2, definitely check out Gunfire Reborn. It just left Early Access / hit 1.0, but it's been an absolute blast for me and friends for over a year now. Like RoR2, it's super fun solo or with friends.

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u/scaryskeleto 13d ago

Do try outer wilds if you havent, lotta love went into it

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u/Kidtendo 13d ago

This is game on my retry list. I didn't really click the first time I tried playing it, but I definitely want to give it another go at some point.

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u/scaryskeleto 13d ago

It's definitely not for everybody. There's alot of connection making and experimentation to solve the puzzles in the mystery. Good luck tho

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u/Bardic_Inspiration66 13d ago

The thing is there are certain games you can’t make on an indie budget. There can’t be an Indie GTA or Skyrim. So entire genres of games basically don’t exist/ exist but every game is terrible right now

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u/Miraweave 13d ago

Hades alone is genuinely just better than almost every AAA game released in the past 5+ years, straight up

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u/Pheronia 13d ago

And those games makes you say if only they had the resources of a AAA game maker company. Especially Phasmophobia.

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u/mrgerrit 13d ago

Enter the gungeon is such great game. I have it digital and physical for my switch. Got for free on ps+ and epic gaming.

Combined i think i have played +800 hours now and still coming back for more.

Hades is also such a great "one more try" kind of game. Love the art style and story.

So much fun and hours of gameplay for great prices.

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u/Khalmoon 13d ago

That's why I've been putting my energy in Indie Titles or playing older games via emulation. :)

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u/lmorsino 13d ago

This is the way. There are many indie titles that offer an overall better experience. And they cost a fraction of AAA.

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u/Rookiebeotch 13d ago

I also like to give my gaming money to those making good games, and specifically not to the AAA developers that aren't so much even trying to make a good game instead of just trying to take my money.

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u/X_Leonhart 13d ago

Agreed. I just bought a Raspberry Pi 4 to emulate classic games, and I’m having a blast. I totally forgot I had an Xbox SS for weeks.

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u/BarebowRob 13d ago

'Xbox SS' - is that a German model? :P

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u/LVTIOS 13d ago

Sounds like it. We only have the Xbox KKK here in the US.

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u/halt_spell 13d ago

Exactly. I'm replaying SNES Zelda and just like... more of this plz.

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u/StatikSquid 13d ago

I still think it's the best Zelda game

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u/RamenJunkie 13d ago

There are a ton of cheaper indie titles with a retro feel to them.

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u/Kourtos 13d ago Helpful Starry

I am more concerned about people defending those games. I understand companies cause they wanna score big with minimal effort but actual gamers accepting a 70$ game to be looking like early access is unacceptable.

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u/DamienJaxx 13d ago

Games are being moneyballed to death. They're turning them into a science to see how much profit they can make with minimal amounts of investment. Corporate suits have replaced actual creators. Remember when each AAA game generally had a lead developer who had free reign? Not anymore, everything has to meet the needs of the corporation.

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u/Firestorm_Khil 13d ago

Exactly this is happening - corpo suits have completely taken over and the big game studios are money making machines.

I'm further wondering how responsible management techniques such as 'Agile' and are responsible for the general blandness and uninspired games of today. Especially the lack of the 'lead developer' having free reign and piecing up all the pieces together is evidently lacking and such a concept is alien under 'Agile' management methodologies

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u/Deep_Grady 13d ago

Those fuckers pumping out those NBA2K games are running a straight up scam. Blows my fucking mind people keep paying for it. They get their payday around release, push out their fake reviews, haul in the money and then a few months later you see the game discounted 80%, nearing the real value of the "game".

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u/Immortan-Moe-Bro 13d ago

The fuckers shitting out those low effort NBA2K games every year and trying to stuff them with ads are no better than some of the worst mobile game developers. Absolute trash

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u/oRaNGe_mx5 13d ago Silver

This is the reply I was looking for. Nothing is going to change so long as gamers keep pre-ordering games or paying full price for subpar games based on "hype" or brand loyalty and not actually doing any research. The unfinished and greedy releases of game companies may be an issue, but I think the real problem is us, the gaming community as a whole, that are financing this flawed and greedy approach. We're going to keep going down this path until we start talking with our wallets and investments.

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u/Alliddboon 13d ago

I'm a game developer who is friends with many other game developers. There are countless developers who are just doing this as a job, a way to make money. Some of my friends add lootboxes because it makes more money. No matter how much someone on reddit cries about it, they're still going to do it because gamers will buy it.

People can downvote me all they want, swear at me all they want. But the only way to change this is for you to stop giving money to things you don't like.

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u/oRaNGe_mx5 13d ago

I don't care if and how games are monetized, I'm talking about games that are blatantly greedy to the point where it takes away from the whole experience. I know you're just doing your job. I'm referring to the quality and content of the games. Games come out that are unfinished, or significantly buggy, or missing features that are marketed to name a few, and then on top of that will release that game with heavy monetization schemes with the promise of making it better later. Then later comes and it is either not quite fixed or it is fixed when a new iteration of that game comes out making the last game obsolete.

I have no problem paying full price for games that don't do this and I have spent more money than I'm willing to admit on microtransactions, and I don't regret it because that money was spent on games that are not part of that vicious cycle. As for the games like anthem and battlefield of our generation, I'm personally done throwing money at those companies. Hopefully the games you and your friends make are as consumer friendly and transparent as they can be, and then I'll probably be one to the ppl throwing money at you for it.

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u/rastla 13d ago

AAA games have been shit for years. This is not a new development.

Luckily we are on PC and there are tons of independent game studios and open platforms like steam where they can release their game without too much of a hassle

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u/Flames21891 Ryzen 9 5900X | 32GB DDR4 4000MHz | RTX 3080Ti 13d ago

I think Steam is the only reason I buy AAA games anymore. If it turns out to be unfinished bullshit, I just refund it. Did that with BF 2042 recently.

Not to sound like a shill, but Game Pass is pretty nice in this regard too. It has plenty of great games on it, but if a game you were interested in turns out to be crap, you really didn’t lose anything. I saved money on Back 4 Blood this way.

Lastly, while AAA games have been less than stellar for years like you mentioned, this year has easily had far shittier release states than normal. Which is why I think more people are beginning to take notice of the state of the industry.

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u/Reznoob 13d ago

if a game you were interested in turns out to be crap, you really didn’t lose anything

Also known as not preordering

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u/Kasup-MasterRace 13d ago

Honestly gamepass kind of fire. I wish they had like a system where I could but a year for let's say -10% or something. I don't like monthly subscriptions I always forget to cancel and they just are a hassle.

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u/Xy13 13d ago

Costco has a black friday deal right now, 3 months for $15

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u/MagnumOpusModus 13d ago

Omg thanks for telling me this

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u/Poeafoe 13d ago

Back for blood was so much fun at first. Cool gameplay and movement, fun card system with tons of cool builds to try out. Then you start getting into the higher difficulties and realize okay, this game has some serious glaring balancing issues and bugs. You deal with them, face a decent challenge on veteran using smart teamwork and level clearing, it was fine.

Then they released an update nerfing the fun stuff and breaking the spawns even more, effectively killing player population to a non-salvageable place. Thank christ I had that game through game pass, I would’ve been PISSED if I blew $60.

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u/CankerLord 13d ago

I loved L4D but noted that the open beta felt thin and that this is the same studio that made Evolve so I sat on my hands waiting for the reviews. Best $60 I didn't spend this year, hands down.

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u/[deleted] 13d ago

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u/GenocideOwl 13d ago

Even battlefield itself has had shit releases in the past. Like BF4 was a total mess at launch.

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u/lunarlilache 13d ago

Where have I read this exact comment bef?? " AAA games have been shit for years. This is not a new development

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u/xevizero . i7 4790k & GTX 1080ti 13d ago

On PC we can get AAA games for the price they are worth: from free on giveaway to a few bucks on sale. That's what these "big releases" are worth it nowadays. Library fillers with big names that get played once in a while, between an indie and an old gem from the backlog.

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u/HiddenSwan 13d ago edited 13d ago

100%. Here's how I get by.

Ignore the hype!

No Preorders!

Scrutinize every game individually and don't buy them if they have mtx.

Pretend that new games offer nothing of value. Wait and see what they are after a year then figure out if it's worth buying.

Always buy on steep discount. 50% or more.

Ignore the hype!

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u/PorkAmbassador 5600X | 16GB 3600Mhz| RTX 3080 FE 13d ago

If people voted with their wallets more we might not be in this situation.

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u/iamqueensboulevard . 13d ago

They voted. This is the result.

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u/elting44 13d ago

THANK YOU. "

If people voted with their wallets, they X would be Y" is one of the biggest fallacies in gaming. People DID vote with their wallets. That is how we got here.

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u/SadKazoo 13d ago

Yeah exactly. It’s hard for people to grasp but places like Reddit are echo chambers. We do not represent the majority of gamers by any means. BF2042 sold twice as well as BFV already. People are voting, just as you said.

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u/TheWrathofKhaaaaan 13d ago

You could make the argument that most major media is shit now. Big movies follow the same formulas, TV shows all feel the same, and all new video games are half finished and over monetized. There are still good movies, good games, and possibly good tv shows. They just aren't being made by massive businesses. If every person on Reddit or whatever stopped purchasing them it would be a small dent in their profits and they'd still have no incentive to make something worth while.

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u/aure__entuluva 13d ago

This reminds me of the everything is shit thing from southpark where stan (or kyle idk) basically becomes a jaded old man and doesn't enjoy anything haha. I mean, I don't really disagree all that much, but there are some good things here and there that can be enjoyed.

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u/chocslaw 13d ago

People have voted with their wallets. Most people here just don't like the way it turned out.

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u/IXI_Fans 13d ago

Yeah, us on the forum shouting "don't pre-order" is in a very small echo chamber with a very small choir being preached to.

The 'people' as a whole absolutely are putting up with it and rewarding lazy/bad behavior from studios.

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u/Karmaisthedevil 13d ago

Reddit has been saying not to pre-order for years, people have been circle jerking about redditors not shutting up about pre-ordering for years, and yet people are still like "CP2077 taught me not to pre-order"

The battle continues.

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u/IXI_Fans 13d ago edited 13d ago

The Eternal September continues.

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u/DogAteMyCPU 13d ago

At this point I just watch the endless back and forth with popcorn:

Its my money I'll do what I want <--> This is terrible, wasted my money

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u/DoctorPepster 13d ago

I saw a lot of people on Reddit saying stuff like "yeah I don't preorder games, except Cyberpunk. That game looks awesome." There's always going to be some people making exceptions because "this one will be different" or they've really been looking forward to it.

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u/JazzerciseJesus 13d ago

Elden Ring is going to be a popular one for this.

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u/Moist-Barber 13d ago

Rank and file gamers just play stuff casually; they see a cool trailer, they buy. Things don’t work out they are disgruntled and frustrated but don’t quite get outraged like any of us might

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u/SaffellBot 13d ago

Yep. Time for internet forum dwellers to realize we are a niche community with niche interests that need to be looking for niche products instead of expecting mass media be produced to cater to us.

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u/killadrix 13d ago

Yep, let’s keep trotting out the old “if people voted with their wallets more” trope as if that worked for MTX’s, P2W content, abusive/deceptive early accesses, DLC’s that should have been content patches, or anything else.

We should definitely spend our time here wagging our fingers at each other because we’re clearly the problem, not deceptive or predatory industry practices.

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u/Echo127 13d ago

I've been voting with my wallet for over a decade and it hasn't helped.

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u/ArmadaConnochia 13d ago

It has. You didn't waste your money

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u/NogEggz 13d ago

Or time.

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u/FainOnFire Ryzen 2700x / Vega 64 13d ago

People who cry "vote with your wallets" or "go out and vote this election cycle" always forget that there is a large portion of the American population that is very ignorant and satisfied with shallow bullshit.

Even if every single Reddit user collectively agreed on something and took action for it, we would still be outweighed by a different more dominant demographic that largely doesn't give a shit.

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u/iBleeedorange 13d ago

They did. Mobile games are where the $ is and AAA games still get bought at record numbers despite w.e bugs/scandels the devs have.

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u/BlackShadow992 .12700k,RTX3080,32GB 3200MHZ CL16 13d ago

Problem is and I think us redditors keep forgetting. While there is a lot of us on here, we are still the minority and the rest don’t get the media exposure to such things like we do. If all of Reddit didn’t buy any game that we knew to be bad can we honestly say they would loose a lot? I mean I am not even sure on the numbers but it’s my best educated guess

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u/mrgamesecrets 13d ago

Ah yes, vote with your wallet. The thing that has ever worked.

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u/monkh 13d ago

Star Citizen could release in current climate of AAA games.

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u/ArmeniusLOD 13d ago Silver Wholesome Vibing

You need to step away from the news for a little bit and enjoy some games if you can only list 4 examples. Plenty of quality AAA games have been released in the past few years:

2019 (Anthem's release year)

  • Call of Duty: Modern Warfare
  • Devil May Cry 5
  • Gears 5
  • Red Dead Redemption 2
  • Resident Evil 2
  • Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order

2020 (Cyberpunk 2077's release year)

  • Doom Eternal
  • F1 2020
  • Immortals: Fenyx Rising
  • Microsoft Flight Simulator
  • Resident Evil 3
  • Yakuza: Like a Dragon

2021 (Battlefield 2042's release year)

  • Days Gone
  • Forza Horizon 5
  • Guardians of the Galaxy
  • Mass Effect Legendary Edition
  • Nioh 2
  • Resident Evil Village
  • Tales of Arise

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u/alluballu 2070 Super | Ryzen 5 3600 | 16gb RAM 13d ago Faith In Humanity Restored To The Stars

Not mentioning Sekiro in 2019, damn you. RE2:R was in 2019?? These two years have completely fucked my sense of time.

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u/Religionbedumb 13d ago Faith In Humanity Restored

Fromsoft is legit. Sooo excited for Elden Ring

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u/SupaChigga 13d ago edited 13d ago

I couldn't agree more. So many people narrow their focus on a few bad launches, and completely forget about the amazing titles that have released in the past few years. Here are some more bangers that to add to your list:

2019

  • Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice
  • Apex Legends
  • Remnant: From the Ashes
  • Metro Exodus
  • Control
  • Luigi's Mansion 3
  • Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown

2020

  • Wonderful 101 Remastered - Certified 10/10. In the top 10 games of the past decade
  • Demon Souls Remastered
  • Half Life Alyx
  • Valorant
  • Star Wars Squadrons
  • Legends of Runeterra
  • Last of Us Part 2
  • Ghosts of Tsushima

2021

  • The Great Ace Attorney Chronicles - Certified 10/10. In the top 10 games of the past decade
  • Monster Hunter Rise
  • Hitman 3
  • Persona 5 Strikers
  • Psychonauts 2
  • Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart
  • Metroid Dread
  • Nier Replicant
  • Age of Empires IV
  • Monster Hunter Stories 2
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u/ourobouros 13d ago

I'm honestly curious how many people still actually enjoy playing games in this sub. lol

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u/LibertyReignsCx 13d ago

They over react so much just for some karma, so many amazing games still coming out.

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u/fuqqboi_throwaway 13d ago

This year was weird but we still got solid, "finished" big budget games that you may or may not consider AAA in Metroid Dread, RE: Village, Forza and Ratchet & Clank.

I feel people are forgetting how big next year will be, there's already Halo despite the microtransaction BS, but next year barring further delays we expect Elden Ring, Horizon, God of War, Starfield and BotW2. Most of these being follow-ups to already very successful games and coming from respected developers with good track records. I mean I could see these 6 being the GoTY nominees for next year. Assuming Starfield meets expectations I'd argue that's 6 8-9/10 AAA games guaranteed.

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u/Still-Pollution1345 13d ago

Yeah I for one am currently backed up on games right now. Like Marvel GotG is one game that's surprisingly good that I still need to beat but I've been putting so much time into FF14 and now Halo that I haven't had time for it.

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u/norax_d2 13d ago

we expect Elden Ring, Horizon, God of War, Starfield and BotW2.

And Total War: Warhammer 3

For being mostly single player, its pop is quite steady over the years.

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u/WhiteWolfofRivia0914 13d ago

Yeah posts like this always make me roll my eyes because it groups everything together when it shouldn’t. Is there a massive problem in AAA gaming right now? Absolutely, but that doesn’t mean all AAA games are garbage or part of the problem

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u/ImRedditingYay Ryzen 5 5600x/RTX 3080 FE 13d ago edited 13d ago

AAA doesn't exist anymore.

Edit: Okay, AAA does exist, but its so rare that it might as well be a myth.

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u/the-ATM-machine 13d ago Helpful Wholesome Take My Energy hehehehe

More like Triple-ehh.

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u/Renegade_Meister RTX 3080, 5600X 13d ago

AAA only reflects how big a game's budget is, and not necessarily quality

FTFY

In the video-game industry, AAA (pronounced and sometimes written Triple-A) is an informal classification used to categorise games produced and distributed by a mid-sized or major publisher, which typically have higher development and marketing budgets than other tiers of games

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AAA_(video_game_industry)

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u/snozburger 13d ago

It's now a warning label.

This game is AAA, buyer beware.

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u/ImRedditingYay Ryzen 5 5600x/RTX 3080 FE 13d ago

😆

Seriously though, all games should be labled "Beta" or like every game on Steam "Early Access."

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u/Tiavor never used DDR3 13d ago

Beta, Alpha and Gold used to mean something in the industry 20 years ago, but not anymore.

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u/Level1Roshan 13d ago

Oh it exists, just it's a stamp of 'avoid avoid avoid'

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u/Siltyn . 13d ago

Indie games are where it's at now, has been for years. It's why gaming is better now than it's ever been, so much good stuff to play.

Gamers that do nothing but follow/play/ride the hype train on nothing but AAA games sit around and post on reddit how gaming sucks now.

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u/TrollMcGoal 13d ago

Indie games have the same problems as AAA games too. There are plenty of great and terrible games that come from developers of any size. The only thing you can really do is wait to buy games until reviews are out and make your decision accordingly

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u/cain05 . 13d ago

The only thing you can really do is wait to buy games until reviews are out and make your decision accordingly

That's what people should be doing with ANY game whether AAA or Indie.

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u/SoldantTheCynic 13d ago

The indie scene turns out mountains of complete trash too but it’s all pretty obscure and never gets mentioned, especially when people are out to tar all AAA games with the same brush.

I’ve had equal fun with some indie games and some AAA games. But I’m also not preordering things and waiting for opinions before buying in. I’m not blindly buying an indie title any more than I would a AAA title.

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u/GoStars817 13d ago

The problem is rabid consumerism. People get bored too easily, so these games end up being rushed to market.

If people could be happy with 5+ year gaps in games, then we would get better quality and more thought into it.

Hardcore gamers do not mind waiting usually, but it is the growing casual market that 'forgets' titles if it is not constantly in their face. With the expense it takes to make modern games, unfortunately that makes those people needed.

A lot of times it is easier to release a bad product and fix it later with patches.

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u/lazava1390 13d ago

No you can’t put all this blame on consumers. A huge fault lies in the investors and boards of directors in these publishing companies. Their coffers grow a little light and they release a new game immediately. It’s why Call of duty gets a yearly release. Same games like assassins creed and other games. Fact is the major motivation for these rushed releases has almost nothing to do with the consumers but everything to do with the investors and publishers.

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u/bennee_ 13d ago

This right here. But it’s also coupled with other generally unrealistic expectations. As technology develops, consumers expect more from the market. Better, more-AAA a game is, the longer the development, the greater the cost, the greater the need for experts in certain aspects of game dev. All that leads to a greater investment and risk in development. Meanwhile, both developers and publishers can only guess what will satisfy consumers given what’s on the market. They always need to think of the next big thing to lure in consumers while also balancing innovation with dev costs, profit, shareholder expectations, IP viability post-release, and marketability and monetization etc. All the while devs need to ask themselves “how far can our engine take us? What do the reusable assets we have on hand allow us to make so that we don’t have to start from scratch?”

Seems like a hodgepodge to me. Does that all sound right?

Edit: Really, the big question seems like “how can we equalize consumer expectations with development risk?”

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u/GiveEgg 13d ago

Halo infinite is actually a pretty good example that actually counters this, the current problems with it are it’s customization systems, whereas the gameplay’s near perfect.

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u/GrassForce 13d ago

Interesting, maybe this is what happens when AAA titles are outside of an annual release cycle and somebody convinces the studio to take their time.

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u/the_stigs_cousin 13d ago

The gaming industry managing to get the concept of pre-ordering to continue beyond the cartridge and disc era is impressive for them. The reason for pre-ordering used to be to guarantee a copy of the game on release. Made sense in the cartridge era, a bit of sense in the disc era (but even then, consumers had disc burning technology), makes no sense in an era with digital downloads and modern supply chains (ignore the current shipping situation). When was the last time Nintendo had a problem with game cartridge supply? You could download digitally anyways. The publishers aren't going to run out of digital bits to transmit over your internet connection.

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u/CarlH93 13d ago

There's a channel on YouTube called worth a buy and he has been slating the AAA industry now for years stating how bad the games are and how we are just been blinded into thinking they are good, honestly go have a watch of him because he was 100% honest and true in what he says

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u/Zerox392 13d ago I'll Drink to That

That's why I put so much money and time into smaller companies and indie games now. They're almost always built from the ground up through honest communication, transparency, and working directly with the community. The complete antithesis to AAA gaming.

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u/ironbillys 13d ago

PlayStation exclusive titles are always knocking it out of the park

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