Are you one of those guys who hates the concept of Alpha funding and early demo showing, well, you must know that sometimes showing early it really is for the best. These are our top 10 games, that
truly tasted better before they were done.
10.-Left 4 dead 2
The reason why this one is on the beginning of the list, is that it still a great game, but it was so much cooler before it actually hit the steam store! At some point all the features that were shown in the intro trailer were actually in the game. You could lose your weapons if you got hit, you were able to cut off parts of zombies without them dying in realistic mode you could even have zombies crawling in towards you even if they didnt have legs! unfortunately all of those extra effects expend a lot of extra cpu, memory and/or had huge balancing and gameplay issues. So when the release date got near, they decided to just take an 8 gauge and shoot them in
the head, and thanks to that they were able to ship on time (for once). But hey, there’s always Left 4 Dead 3.
Well it just takes a look at the trailer and the early press demos to realize Bioshock infinite is an awesome game and a huge contender for game of the year. But… it just isn’t what they originally bargained for, entire levels were cut off, the world was even bigger first and dont even get me started on what they could have done with the universe rifts (and “revenge of the jedi”). However it still is awesome in every sense. But one cant help to
wonder what it could have been, if it had been given more time. Probably that could have been answered in a later DLC, except we got a horde mode and a return to the original bioshock instead… yay?
A lot of time ago, modding was something that kids did to put Bart Simpson face in doom, however the Counter strike team (and others like them) changed that concept forever, proving is actually possible to create a quality product by having creativity and skill to use the tools in a modable game engine Modding became serious business the day the guys who made CS got huge contracts by valve. Counter strike took the rainbow six school of realistic tactical gaming and created a fast, competitive and highly challenging experience that is still considered one of the most influential games in its genere.
Unfortunately before it was released (and valve took it under its wing) it was free and has a huge modding community behind it. Once it became a full paid product not only it stopped having the chance of being fixed and balanced by the community, it also had to compete against full AAA products. And to be honest CS never had the marketting muscle behind it, so it had a tiny spotlight on top and was always was more of a cult hit than anything. Specially while sharing shelf with Half Life 2.
However the final blow came in the form of a small game you may have heard of: Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare and this was not the “isnt that the same game experience of every year?” it was “WOW! this is the first ever most awesome war game like experience I ever had!” Modern Warfare took just about every aspect of Counter Strike and made it larger, faster, more accesible and just spectacular in every sense. It was just a matter of time before Counter Strike faded out completely to obscurity, but you must always remember before Modern Warfare there was Counter Strike and it was good, free to play forever and came with free maps and expansions. It was
Minecraft is a great game, but we should be really glad that they decided to release it since alpha, for two reasons: 1.-It literally took forever to be released ( I timed it) 2.-It really was a bit better before that.
Minecraft is the ultimate survivor/build experience and an awesome multiplayer experience. However if you analyse the latest updates and the “end” of minecraft it seems what notch really wanted all this time, was to create an RPG adventure, a weird, no story, no dialog and no sense at all, in which you enchant weapons, kill enemies, win levels and ultimately kill a dragon… for no reason whatsoever. Also the reward you get for ultimately killing that dragon is a poem, a poem that goes on forever and sounds more like the ramblings of a not very “cohesive” mind. If you consider that it took 4 years to get this “ending”, anticlimatic doesnt even begin to describe it.
The only thing the ending is good for is that it gives you that itchy feeling that you have already beat this game and therefore there is no reason to keep playing.
I cant say no to horses (which were actually added as a user mod first btw) but all the new RPG like elements in Minecraft seriously dont add up. As a builders game, and survival Minecraft stands in top as the best and most influential independent game ever. But as an RPG.. uhm … yeah.
Viewed as many as a 2D Minecraft clone (probably, because mostly thats what it is) terraria also offered a Metroid Like combat element with a little RPG story to boot, however instead of painting themselves in a corner like Minecraft, Terraria actually has some sort of a backdrop history, you see the world is being destroyed by a nightmarish force called “the corruption” and thats why your map is enclosed with this withered area around where very strong enemies lie dormant, so you are the last hope to save terraria, blah, blah ,is not much, but at least it gives you something to work with. The boss battles in this game are awesome, varied and usually insanely hard.
So why was this game better before it was finished? well because of a little detail: one day out of the blue (and despite its success), the authors said “ok, so terraria is over now, no more updates! Thanks for all the fish!” what?! I kidd you not, it seems the author of this game came from the old school where finishing a game, actually meant finishing the game. They simply stopped doing updates when they were happy with it. No modding allowed either.
But ok, I get it, sometimes, done means done. And thanks to alpha and betas we got to play it before it reach is final completion. (also we got a small update teeny a few days ago, so .. there is that) and theres the upcoming release of starbound… lets just hope they dont send a memo casually mentioning there wont be updates after it goes gold.
Hmm I wasnt sure to add DayZ to this list, because it officially isnt “released” yet. However considering it is a text book example of a problem I think is worth enough not only to add it but to put it on the top 5.
DayZ is a free mod for the (not so popular) arma 2 game/engine, despite is humble origin as a one man mod, DayZ became a super star in the PC game scene due to all the cool things it gets right. DayZ is a survival game with simulation elements in which you get to face what would really happen if a zombie apocalypse ocurred, you dont need hordes trying to feed on you, a single zombie and some bad luck is all you need to put an end to your survivor streak, the game is brutal and hard as nails. Also just in case all the time you are able to play with other survivors that can help you out, or become your worse enemies in a glimpse.
DayZ was awesome when it first was released as an alpha test and continued to be that way for quite a while, however with all the fame, problems followed, clearly the Arma engine wasnt up to task since the beginning, bugs and crashes all around, but things got even worse when players started filling up servers. It was difficult not only to survive the lag, but even to connect to the main servers and that may meant your inventory was gone. Rendering days or weeks of survival useless.
Gameplay wise, it became almost imposible to stay alive since everyone just started shooting anyone on sight. However the real deal breaker was that Arma 2 wasnt exactly the most secure netcode ever (specially since its completely modable) but the hacks just went off the hook, funny first, but then they simply made the game nigh unplayable for most. It still is possible to get in some random server friends and have some fun. But chances are you are more likely to find a super sniper/hacker that will ruin the day. Or someone who is literally playing god and killing anyone on will (unless you happen to know someone with a great PRIVATE server)
DayZ the standalone game is bound to be released soon, but to be honest, the decision of creating this one in the arma 3 engine, may not have been for the best, the engine seems as buggy, and unstable as its predecessor (look up videos in youtube).Something tells me the glory “DayZ” have been left behind. back when you were able to enter a server and actually team up with a stranger against the zombie horde. Those “DayZ” one way or another are gone.
3.-WarZ (Infestation: Tale of Survivors)
Although obviously a clone of DayZ, once upon a time, a bright shiny ray of hope stood upon it, a version of DayZ with the call of duty control scheme and no bugs? sign me up!
WarZ revered itself as the next big thing and for a small lapse, it kind of was, a zombie MMO first in its class (a lie btw) great screenshots of supposed versions to come, a laundry list of upcoming features including vehicles, special infected, quests created by players. The works, this was going to be an amazing action mmo.When the alphas started to roll in (for a price mind you) everyone went in with a happy face, you see DayZ is a war imulator that was modded in to a zombie theme, WarZ was definitely a zombie game, better environment, scary sound effects, slightly better production values, guns and ammo and zombies to shoot at, and people to hide or join forces with, this was (believe it or not) fun to play, what could possibly go wrong?
Well… seing the release and “alpha” period of WarZ was the equivalent of seing a ugly, slimy caterpillar go into a coccoon and emerge as… an even uglier,slimer, bigger, fattier, smelly, stinky caterpillar from hell, what the heck happened in there?
First of all Microtransactions, the guys who made WarZ could put MS to shame in the greed dept. and thats saying a whole lot, these guys started trying to ask money for (wait for it) lives, respawns, ammo, guns and this is a survival game you lose all of that _every time you die!_ just imagine a super mario bros that literally charged you money every time you wanted to use a mushroom and you will get the picture.
Thenthey made those “scarce” meaning you couldnt find a gun unless you buy it, or ammo for that matter (weapons were already scarce and place in logical points first)
Then they got greedier since they realized some people were able to hang on to guns, so they added “AGING” to guns, so guns destroy themselves after a while!
Then they got EVEN GREEDIER and made invisible teen foot long collision boxes on zombies, so they could kill players just for standing close to them, trying to avoid them. The only thing you could do not to die was not being close to zombies, ever… in a zombie game.
Wait a minute, this doesnt sound like being greedy any more, it sounds like they are actually scamming people!
To this date we are not actually sure if this is not a large scam disguised as a game, the fact that this game got made in russia make the whole thing look shady to be honest. But some free to play on iPhone already use similar techniques. However this is a NOT free to play game is costs $15 to have the privilege of paying for weapons, ammo and ultimately lives.
Also just to get the development costs down, they apparently stopped actual development of the game. The entire laundry list of features is to date not present. The screenshots were fake. All programming efforts went to adding “premium” features. (pay features) just lovely.
WarZ went from “more promising game of the year” to “worst game ever”,”nigh unplayable”, “most possibly a scam” in less than 6 months.
The game had so much bad press, they literally had to change the name to get some sales.
But believe it or not once upon a time, it was fun to play and it didnt had microtransaction or hackers. Take my word for it, I was there, and it was good. (the key word there though is WAS)
2.-Duke Nukem Forever
Believe it or not, Duke Nukem was once a pretty good looking project the Michael Bay esque, trailer circa 2001 showed a Duke Nukem going to vegas, saving the world with a macho attitude it was charming, amazing and full of testosterone. The game would probably been a HUGE hit if released back then.Rumor is the game was pretty much complete, but it was designed with the quake 2 engine (the first used for half life), an engine that had become obsolete by then. In probably one of the worst business decisions ever, 3d Realms decided to can DNF just to change the engine. Later on they went to do the Max Payne series instead, while “allegedly” working on DNF at the same time. … for 12 years.
Unfortunately gearbox (of borderlands 2 fame) decided to “revive” DNF (which at this point was called DID NOT FINISH) the mighty uncanny, unfinishable game. And everyone was happy as can be. The timing seem right, call of duty had made FPS too serious and politically correct, DNF was going to bring good old FPS style back with a flash! what could possibly go wrong?
And well, we all know what happened, when DNF finally showed up, it was not just lackluster and old looking. It didnt work very well either. Terrible load times, horrible mini games, generic weapons, a silly rechargeable shield a la halo, (ruining every single sense of old FPS in the gameplay) completely tasteless jokes using embarrasingly bad sex innuendo (rape jokes, people, seriously, rape jokes in 2011!), and no charm whatsoever, every single line Duke uttered dropped like a ton of bricks.
DNF was a kind reminder of why some things should be keep only for nostalgia sake and not ever be used again, because then we would realize how terrible they really were. However ONCE (circa 2001) Duke was cool and full of awesome butt kicking and no bubble gum available promise.
1.-Alien Colonial Marines.
Is practically impossible to believe now, but there was an alien colonial marines demo, that turned the world upside down, great lighting, great acting, huge production values, an actual sequel to a movie made into a game (thats HUGE). Playing the demo (which according to sources was playable and not just CGI) felt like being inside the movies and being a part of the universe. What went wrong there? .. just about every…single…freaking…thing.
According to sources Gearbox was too busy trying to get Borderlands 2 right so they (ilegally it seems) gave the amazing aliens demo to be turned into a full game to newcomer TimeGate studios (of section 8 fame) unfortunately they were also busy trying to get section 8 to work as an XBLA game at least, so they used what they had for section 8 in aliens, cut corners everywhere, and focused on the multiplayer only (since they had zero experience in single player games) At the time Take 2 was most likely thinking the game was going to follow the DNF route and that it was going to take ages before they actually had to release anything. But … one day Sega called and told them they had to release the game NOW before the next generation consoles hit. And the rest.. well you may guess what happened.
When released Alien Colonial Marines was unfinished in every single way, the game barely “functioned” meaning it was able to get from point A to point B without crashing (thats were all efforts went to, since it managed to do that in a multiplatform release). But the rest was nearly unplayable, specially the AI, which basically stand in front of the player to allow him to be shoot and advance to the next level. Of course it didnt looked, felt or played
anywhere as good as the official demo. The dynamic lighting was cut off, entire sections were gone acting was replaced by text messages, and all the drama went with it. It was the equivalent of going in to a carnival haunted house where everithing was either on maintenance or out of order.
However at some point, before release, alien marines was a great experience, full of next gen tech (running on pc obviously) great acting, awesome effects and full of hope. I just which they released that sweet demo to the poor saps that preordered the game and got a turd instead.