Graphics - what do gamers want?

New graphics cards flood the market every couple of months or so and promise faster and faster performance with ever increasing clock speeds and memory performance. A lot of enthusiasts clamour for the greatest in the hope that they'll be able to play the latest games with just that little bit of greater detail than the previous generation of cards.
 
My question to you, dear reader, is: what should we, as gamers, be doing? Why should we have to spend hundreds of ££'s on the fastest card we can buy when we know it will almost certainly be superceded by something even 'faster' in a few months time?
 
"Why should we have to spend hundreds of ££'s on the fastest card we can buy?"
 
There are several ways to look at the dilemma facing us here. One way is to point our long fingers at developers. Should we ask why developers cannot code their games in a way that means that the games look good even at lower detail levels or on older generation cards? After all, engines like the Steam engine still look stunning on pretty much any card made in the last couple of years, even when ramped down a little bit.
 
What I am saying is that it CAN be done, so why is it not done more? When was the last time you opened up a game and tried it out only to see a slideshow? Then when you tuned down those lovely graphics, all you were left with was Kryton facing you and a landscape that reminded you of a low-res version of the Tellie-tubbies?
 
"all you were left with was Kryton facing you and a landscape that reminded you of a low-res version of the Tellie-tubbies"
 
Developers like Crytek have an awful lot to answer for in our search for the best and most realistic video games, but they also have a lot to answer for in terms of making gamers buy the latest kit. Did we all need DX10 cards for Crysis? No, we didn't, but the kind folks at Microsoft and Crytek made sure we thought we needed em. Could Crysis have been made to look just as nice without needing you to sell some limbs to play it? I suspect so.
 
That said, another way to look at this is to take a sly look in the mirror. Why DO you buy the latest graphics card? Is it for the pure enjoyment of the game? Would Crysis have been half the game it was if it hadn't looked so good? A tough one to call, but the answer is no.
 
It looks like I've argued myself away from the first sentence on the previous paragraph....or have I? Why is it we demand games look fantastic without too much of a focus on gameplay?
 
doom1
 
Under that sexy skin, Crysis was a decent enough FPS, but it certainly didn't break any gameplay barriers (unless it was the "how low can the frames go" barrier!).
 
 "Crysis....certainly didn't break any gameplay barriers"
 
The race for the biggest "E-Peen" needs to stop and gamers need to start sending a message to devs: "Give us games that look good and play well on what is out there already". Even several months after Crysis's release I was still seeing (and saying) "it's designed for hardware that doesn't even exist yet". When you step back and think about it, that makes no sense at all and is actually ludicrous, especially from a group of people oft-criticised for their lack of long term attention.
 
"Even several months after Crysis's release I was still seeing (and saying) "it's designed for hardware that doesn't even exist yet"."
 
I am picking on Crytek, but they're not the only ones. The Industry seems packed full of companies trying to make hardware manufacturers money and gamers broke. Whilst 'pushing the limits' is an excellent thing to be doing, I would far rather see the limits of game design pushed, instead of the limits of my poor ickle graphics card.
 
Gamers like us need to demand excellence in gameplay as well as in graphics, wrapped up in a bundle that actually uses the hardware we've got sitting inside our PC's. Developers need to start getting their coding...and their balance right.
 
Let us ask not what more hardware can do for our gaming, but what our gaming can do on our harware.
 
Agree? Disagree? Shout at me here
 
 
Crysis very high
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Most Recent Comments

25-07-2008, 04:51:54

mrapoc
Too right mate!

Crysis looks good..but i get bored after / before finishin the first level :/

Plus my rig aint exactly low and i can still only play comfortable at medium high settings

Games and apps do need to start being coded better (quad support...tidier and heck even better gameplay!)

I have yet to see more than 3 games iv played that support native 64 bit Quote

25-07-2008, 05:09:01

JN
Maybe its just me, but sometimes I think that amazing graphics can spoil a game.

I remember playing games like resident evil where the graphics were pretty dire. You'd be thinking "wtf is that on the floor" then all of a sudden realise its a zombie or sommit that starts chewing at ur feet Quote

25-07-2008, 05:29:04

Mr. Smith
I want amazing graphics.

I want amazing gameplay.

I want amazing hardware.

I get none of the above.

Is it me or are there no decent games out there? As time passes I feel less and less inclined to buy the latest hardware because there aren't any games I want to play and/or the performance increases are negligible.

The HDR mod to Half Life made an old game come back to life for me and still ran really well on my 88gts/88gt... Hell, HL2 ep1 ran smoothly on a 7300gt. However I feel Source looks too dated.

When I play a game I want to become immersed in the environment and feel as if I am there. This requires slick graphics (an attention to detail), sound is paramount (Doom was atmospheric) but also needs involving gameplay...

Recently I have nearly sold my PC a few times as it is now a glorified HTPC. I'm not playing games because there aren't any decent ones out there and the ones coming up that look decent probably won't run to my standards on my hardware which will force me into yet another hardware upgrade.

Sigh.

Edit: Also, all my mates with consoles are spoilt for choice for games that will instantly run fine on there console that is maybe a few years old... I think PC has better gameplay generally but they are so much hassle. I also feel people defend their PC's as they represent a significant investment for most people here (I bet most people here are 18-20 earning <£20K), luckily I could throw my PC out of the window and it would make no odds to me so I feel I can be more objective. PC's are a waste of money. They used to offer screaming performance and awesome games but the last two years I have seen them develop into money leeches. Feel free to disagree...Quote

25-07-2008, 05:33:14

FarFarAway
Quote:
Originally Posted by name='Mr. Smith'
Recently I have nearly sold my PC a few times as it is now a glorified HTPC. I'm not playing games because there aren't any decent ones out there and the ones coming up that look decent probably won't run to my standards on my hardware which will force me into yet another hardware upgrade.
This is precisely my point mateQuote

25-07-2008, 06:57:23

Hiks
Quote:
Originally Posted by name='Mr. Smith'

Edit: Also, all my mates with consoles are spoilt for choice for games that will instantly run fine on there console that is maybe a few years old... I think PC has better gameplay generally but they are so much hassle. I also feel people defend their PC's as they represent a significant investment for most people here (I bet most people here are 18-20 earning <£20K), luckily I could throw my PC out of the window and it would make no odds to me so I feel I can be more objective. PC's are a waste of money. They used to offer screaming performance and awesome games but the last two years I have seen them develop into money leeches. Feel free to disagree...
Couldn't agree more, The pc games releases has slowed down so much over the past year or two I've been saying this for a while.

I've been a gamer since i was a nipper and always argued that the PC was the defining platform, Whats an FPS without a keyboard and mouse, when was the last platform sonic type game you seen on the PC, strategy games were in a league of their own and obviously they was always cheaper than the consoles on the release date £30 or so.

I used to easily manage to buy a game a week for the PC and those were games i looked forward to getting not just anything off the shelf. I rerember medal of honour, call of duty and wolfenstien all getting released at the same time I rerember it as I booked a week off work lol

Just add a few flashy bits to the quake 3 engine and release some games I say.Quote
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