I'm doing a little bit of research on what draws people to FPSes (multiplayer or singleplayer, doesn't matter). Here is my ideal FPS:
Multiplayer: - Plenty of unlockables - Generally good feel for the controls - Superb level design with little room for camping - Leaderboards of some sort
Singleplayer: - Truly compelling story - Many many choices that matter (Think Mass Effect...without the throwaway ending) - Plenty of action (hard to do while being story-heavy, but I have some thoughts for this)
An FPS probably needs some sort of niche to fill. What niches are there that needs filled anymore? Obviously you have your space marine (Doom, though a space cowboy-esque one would be awesome), your witch hunter (Hexen), your Nazi killers (Wolfenstein, WaW to some extent), your police (SWAT 4), your criminals (Payday: The Heist), your survivors (Rage, FO3), your Jedi (JK1/2/A), and your soldiers (too many.) What haven't you seen in an FPS that would be cool?
I think the average person is drawn to FPS games (namely Call of Duty) because of the constant reward scheme. All games seem to be adopting that technique, because it does work for most people. Cooperative gameplay usually draws me into a FPS (Left 4 Dead, Borderlands).
I don't know why, but years ago when I played Battlefield 2 I could play it for hours. It had unlocks (I honestly didn't care about them though =p), but the unlocks took quite some time to actually get. Yet I look back and noticed I played games longer when I wasn't being rewarded constantly, or being rewarded at all. It could be that the reward seem to unbalance the game to a degree. Especially when you can get perks like double-tap and steady aim, it's just... not balanced.
I rarely play FPS games now though, I prefer third person because they usually have a better story, which is what I almost always look for in a game (a story, or being able to tell my own story).
Maybe if more developers focused on a story/cooperative rather than multiplayer, I would play more FPS games, but for now that rarely seems to happen.
The thing about Battlefield is it can appeal to the masses. If you like rewards, guess what? There are weapon and kit unlockables! If you like to enjoy the game, guess what? The game can be played with the starting kits, and the useful equipment and weapon unlocks are only a couple of hours into the game.
Call of Duty is too rewarding, for how little skill it requires to play most of the garbage in that game now. I literally do not remember hating it so much in CoD4, even though there were still noob tubes, Martyrdom and last stand.
eezstreetAppeal of FPSes?
I didn't make it!
I'm mainly interested in the singleplayer aspect of the game. I don't care much about the multiplayer.
My primary interest is the quality storyline, something that will justify the bloodshed. =p You want me to go around and kill things? Fine, but give me a reason to do so, some storyline that will keep me motivated to keep up, to look what kind of creature lurks around the next corner and empty a clip into it. I don't really care much for shooting itself as much as I care about the storyline. Hence my dislike for multiplayer. No story, just pointless killing.
eezstreet;5621939 - Many many choices that matter (Think Mass Effect...without the throwaway ending) - Plenty of action (hard to do while being story-heavy, but I have some thoughts for this)
These two somewhat contradict one another, and the first doesn't even apply to most FPS games. When ME 3 is played with the choice options, you're playing in modes other than Action, which is the only one intended to give it a mere FPS feel. Otherwise it plays more like an RPG than an FPS.
It's not just that it's hard to make a deep story for an FPS, it's that most players that want a deep story also want choices, skills to build, extensive inventories, etc, and at that point, again, what you have is an RPG. Hybrids are hard to make, which is why most devs make either an FPS, or RPG.
The only way to really make an FPS with a deep story is to give it a rich back story, have at least a few main characters that are well developed that you interact with, and have immersive but skipable cutscenes. Otherwsie you bore the FPS fans that want a flowing, uninterrupted style of play.
A game like HL2 is an example of an FPS that has a fairly good back story. Unfortunately AI interaction is very clumsy and they often get in your way. There are the less commonly made hybrid FPS/RPG games, like Deus Ex, but most aren't made intelligently enough to be popular.
**************************************************************************************************** As for my tastes, in the past I've leaned toward FPS games primarily, but without a good back story, solid character development and interaction, and interesting and varied level design and objectives, they can become quite boring corridor shooters. I've long since outgrown the arcade shooters I started out with for these reasons.
On the other hand, I don't very often play full on RPGs, unless they are ones where you can avoid lengthy conversations. Devs are now starting to follow formulas more akin to hybrid games with the latest RPGs though. Clearly the player has more options on how to play in games like Skyrim and Mass Effect 3.
So while some hardcore RPG fans have become annoyed at certain titles changing to a very sandbox, pick up and play style, others have began trying RPGs and are now entertained vs bored by them. Both Skyrim and Mass Effect 3 have managed to do this without losing their RPG fanbases, because ultimately, the freedom of play style still keeps them interesting enough for both sides.
There seems to be a hybrid Role Playing/Action game genre increasing in popularity. It happened in the survival horror genre when games like Resident Evil went from Survival Horror to "Action Adventure"/Horror. I don't see anything wrong with it, and it could have success in the FPS genre too, adding more RPG and Adventure elements to shooters that lend well to it.
^And on that point, make sure your fucking main character speaks. I'm looking at you, Call of Duty and at you Half-Life. Most stories with silent protagonists just flat out suck. Doubly-so if you never see their face in a cutscene so you can't even see any emotion. >.>
Schofield;5622111^And on that point, make sure your fucking main character speaks. I'm looking at you, Call of Duty and at you Half-Life. Most stories with silent protagonists just flat out suck. Doubly-so if you never see their face in a cutscene so you can't even see any emotion. >.>
It's not just shooters that have this problem. As good as Skyrim is, you never hear your character other than some groans of pain now and then. Hell, that's how old style arcade shooters like RTCW were made. Can't they do better than that in a well known RPG series? Skyrim doesn't even have very many voice actors in the whole game. You hear the same voices used over and over.
That said, it's a LOT harder to implement protagonist voices for an RPG than a shooter. You'd literally have to have one for every possible race of character you can play as.
>Omen<;5622115It's not just shooters that have this problem. As good as Skyrim is, you never hear your character other than some groans of pain now and then. Hell, that's how old style arcade shooters like RTCW were made. Can't they do better than that in a well known RPG series? Skyrim doesn't even have very many voice actors in the whole game. You hear the same voices used over and over.
Ugh? Skyrim has over 70 voice actors... That's more than almost any game I can think of... Skyrim is a bad example when comparing to an FPS though. Call of Duty is a 5 hour campaign with no voice from the main character, while Skyrim is a potentially 300 hour game with voices for thousands of characters across several races. It's acceptable that Skyrim doesn't have any voice for the main character. There are 10 races, which means 10 different voices for tens, maybe hundreds of hours of dialogue is just not going to happen.
Schofield;5622132Ugh? Skyrim has over 70 voice actors..
You DO know the game is made in 8 languages don't you? I seriously doubt there's 70 voice actors per language. More like 70 total, which would be only about 9 per language.
Have you played the game? You can't travel far without constantly hearing the same voices, and quite often they use the same voice for drastically different type characters, which makes it even worse.
And it's not a bad example because an RPG, esp one as big as Skyrim, should have quite a lot of voice variety, but I've played shooters that have more voice variety than Skyrim does.