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mmx

New games are just not fun anymore?

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This is probably me getting old (36) but I just can't find anything good to play. I have a PC, PS5 and Switch. I also have the PS5 ultimate subscription, which allows me to trial and test a lot of games. I have played everything in there, and to be honest, the only games that managed to get me some hours of fun were: Ghost of Tsushima, Hitman and THPS2 remake. THPS2 doesn't really count because, well, nostalgia. And that's basically what I play: old COD games, old Civilization, old Tropico, Doom/Quake/anything id...

 

I thought the recent surge of "boomer shooters" would help, but they are all pathetic souless copies of a begone era.

 

Anyone else on the same boat?

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There are plenty of new interesting games. 2023 was a great year for video games. BG3, SF6, Tekken 8, Atomic Heart, Rogue Trader, FF XVI, Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom, Alan Wake 2, Like a Dragon: Infinite Wealth. And also Hogwarts Legacy and Diablo 4. And mediocre Starfield, and a failure MK 1. And this is just for one year. indie scene is no longer what it was in 2012-2017, but there are also interesting projects.

 

I agree about boomer shooters, I just liked Dusk more or less

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I don't hate modern games per se.  Sometimes the ideas are good or at least not bad.  There are some terrible trends in gaming today, but so were there in the past, they were just different ones.

I do hate modern computers/OSes though, which newer games tend to obligate the use of, so I kind of hate them by proxy that way.

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There’s plenty of older games you likely haven’t played. Start there and work your way up, or don’t. 

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They are still fun but in the hardest difficulty.

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Try something out of your comfort zone! Outer Wilds, Elden Ring, anything FromSoft :)

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A common response to this is that we got older. It's true to some extent. But I kinda agree that it feels like games don't have much of a hook anymore, at least not for me. I look at the time it would take to get used to all aspects of the game (controls, gameplay loop, etc.) and just sigh, because it just feels like more effort than it's worth. This is especially bad if the game doesn't do a particularly good job of teaching you what you need to know, or if you're even doing things correctly in the first place. Then, it can feel like even more of a slog than it should have in the first place.

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Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, mmx said:

...And that's basically what I play: old COD games, old Civilization, old Tropico, Doom/Quake/anything id...

 

New games are fun, you are not playing the right ones.

 

New games to consider:

  • Trepangis super cool
  • Severed Steel is great, pretty, stylish... Can't wait for it's successor Echo Point Nova
  • Helldivers 2 is actually pretty good
  • Total War titles, despite recent fan reception, remains great fun.
  • Darktide, despite somewhat shallow depth, has a great and satisfying core gameplay loop.
  • Starship Troopers Extermination is a great game in early access, just wait until the promised soontm class overhaul (Update, literally tomorrow it releases)
  • Robocop Rogue City was an absolute blast and I'm now on the Terminator game they made, also great.
  • Ready or Not is an excellent game and I cannot recommend enough
  • System Shock remake is a great experience (soon to be updated, the 11th of this month).

And this is just what I have got around to, looking forward to some real bangers like En Garde and later on releases like Space Marine 2.

Edited by mrthejoshmon

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Eh, I'm rarely interested in the big ticket "AAA" stuff these days but the indie scene tends to have a fair number of interesting releases.

 

I do tend to play older games but it's hard to say how much of that is lack of interest in a newer title, and how much is simply a desire for some retro gaming and/or to clear out a little of the backlog.

 

Plenty of solid titles already mentioned in the rest of the thread, and my definition of "recent" kinda expands out to anywhere within the last 5-6 years because there are a LOT of games out these days, and it takes a while to get to them sometimes. Which probably contributes to a perception that the good ones are hard to find. The pile's getting bigger and harder to sift through.

 

Some suggestions for a few games I've been enjoying and why:

- Mortal Sin. Bit eye searing but a solid kinda realtime randomised dungeon crawler.

- Trepang2 is short but explosively fun.

- Xenonauts 2 is really more Xenonauts 1 with the most annoying parts fixed

- Bannerlord is a true damn sequel in all the right ways

- Hardspace Shipbreaker is the closest we've got to a real spaceship salvaging game and it's great.

 

I'll stop my list here but yea, I find these days there are plenty of good games releasing, and enough usually that I haven't caught up to that I can wait for a special for almost all of them, making my average spend for game a far cry from the $70 Ubisoft et al. would desire.

 

Could also be an aspect of energy levels, if everything else is tiring you out games tend to lose their lustre since they do demand some mental energy to actively enjoy.

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4 hours ago, mmx said:

I thought the recent surge of "boomer shooters" would help, but they are all pathetic souless copies of a begone era.

 

I think that's a bit harsh on well, the more notable ones like Dusk, Prodeus, Ion Fury, Hedon, Cultic and whatnot. Actually I don't even think Hedon is a retro game, because it's got too many ideas in it that aren't really anywhere in the 90s games, and really excellent ideas at that. I genuinely found it to be one of my favourite games of the last decade or so. 

 

I'd echo Severed Steel and Terminator Resistance. I'd have played more of Robocop but it's optimisation on the Series X is pretty bad, Terminator runs flawlessly though. 

 

Otherwise, eh, I'm not sure, I've played quite a lot of indy games I've enjoyed but maybe you're not that into 2D games which most of them are, stuff like Huntdown, Cyber Shadow and Infernax. 

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4 hours ago, mmx said:

I thought the recent surge of "boomer shooters" would help, but they are all pathetic souless copies of a begone era.

Agree on this part, something about them is a little pathetic

...that and Doom is the only 'le boomer shooter' (or FPS in general) I even like

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It feels to me like games peaked in the 'PS360' era, when 'HD' was new. Many of my favourite games came out in that period, and not all that much really grabbed me in the PS4 era, with the PS5 era having...almost nothing that feels new and revolutionary for me. Just yet more cinematic games with a blaring generic orchestra, or giant empty open worlds with a list of a million collectables, predatory FOMO games that even infects singleplayer to keep you 'working' on an unpaid second job, etc.

 

Feels like I only have fun with modern remasters/remakes of older games at this point, like the excellent Star Ocean 2 remake.

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1 hour ago, mrthejoshmon said:

 

New games are fun, you are not playing the right ones.

 

New games to consider:

  • Trepangis super cool
  • Severed Steel is great, pretty, stylish... Can't wait for it's successor Echo Point Nova
  • Helldivers 2 is actually pretty good
  • Total War titles, despite recent fan reception, remains great fun.
  • Darktide, despite somewhat shallow depth, has a great and satisfying core gameplay loop.
  • Starship Troopers Extermination is a great game in early access, just wait until the promised soontm class overhaul (Update, literally tomorrow it releases)
  • Robocop Rogue City was an absolute blast and I'm now on the Terminator game they made, also great.
  • Ready or Not is an excellent game and I cannot recommend enough
  • System Shock remake is a great experience (soon to be updated, the 11th of this month).

And this is just what I have got around to, looking forward to some real bangers like En Guard and later on releases like Space Marine 2.

 

You sir, have excellent taste.

 

And on topic... I stopped playing mainstream AAA games like 10 years ago since I realised they all spiralled into corporate trend-seeking circlejerking management hell. As others have touched on, if you (OP) don't enjoy anything new, look to the old. There's so many games even from around the 2000s you likely haven't played yet. It just requires changing your perspective a little bit to find the games you overlooked back then. They might surprise you :)

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I kind of feel this as well, there haven't really been any AAA studio output that I have been interested that don't involve hideo kojima in some way in a loong time. Seems like there is a lot of interesting indie stuff coming out if you can navigate around a lot of the shovelware garbage in Steam. I am pretty interested in hyper demon and stuff like that but I'd rather eat glass than play another military sim shooter.

Also dwarf fortress finally got a steam release with a real UI so that's kind of new and interesting

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I would give an honorable mention to Doom (2016), Quake Champions (2017), Dusk (2018) and Doom Eternal (2020), as for FPSs, and Home Sweet Home (2017), Home Sweet Home: Episode 2 (2019), At Dead of Night (2020) and Home Sweet Home: Survive (2021), as for horrors.

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2 hours ago, mrthejoshmon said:

Helldivers 2 is actually pretty good

 

Gotta second this. HD2 is a blast and I'm having a great time meeting new people. So far, the community is a lot like Deep Rock Galactic. Everyone one I have meet has been friendly and fun to play with. 

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4 hours ago, mmx said:

I thought the recent surge of "boomer shooters" would help, but they are all pathetic souless copies of a begone era.

The thing about what I call the "neo-boomshoot" wave that's been going on for the past 5 or so years is that it's a lot of indie developers. There are vastly more indie games put out per year than AA and AAA afaik, and as a byproduct, the new wave of boomer shooters is very saturated with games varying greatly in quality (though still better than most AAA games, but I'll get to that later), so it can be hard to really find new/upcoming releases that interest you.

 

From what you've described, I think you're looking in the wrong places. The best games you're going to find are rarely the ones that are in one of those subscription services. These are just the games that are approved by Sony, which has a whole host of potential motivations behind it. 

 

The current state of AAA gaming is what happens when an industry has been around long enough. The execs and shareholders thought they'd figured out how to game the system by releasing unfinished, shallowly designed, always-online, microtransaction-infested pieces of e-waste. But with the mass layoffs going on right now, I think we're on the cusp of AAA publishers and studios either rethinking their business model and learning from the indie and AA games that are succeeding like Lethal Company, Helldivers 2 and Baldur's Gate 3, or continuing down their path of petty greed and have karma meet them at the end in one form or another. 

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I don't play modern games less because I dislike them and more because I lack the proper resources (heck, even the likes of GZDoom stutter in my potato of a laptop). That being said, you might want to consider watching a few video essays on "how to enjoy video games again" and see which of these might be the most suitable for your own case, while also looking out for gameplay videos/trying out game demos to find out whether you want to buy and play a game or not (if there's any).

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7 hours ago, mmx said:

I thought the recent surge of "boomer shooters" would help, but they are all pathetic souless copies of a begone era.

I mean, I'd love to help you out, but from this sentence alone it's apparent that we live in different realities.

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There are some new fun games that I usually like to play. Red Dead Redemption 2 is a good game, which is somewhat new.

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8 hours ago, taufan99 said:

you might want to consider watching a few video essays on "how to enjoy video games again"

NGL this is about the most dystopian thing I've read in a while.

 

idk, you'll probably just need to find your niche. there's plenty of demos on Steam available for all sorts of games. you may find yourself also in a position where you need to try a genre besides shooter games for a while.

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Yeah, games suck. The only reason we can enjoy the good ones is because we make the effort to imagine a better game while we play.

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dasho's post could end the thread but since it didn't I might as well bang out some hurried thoughts.

 

Games are such a fast-moving-medium, and one that responds to culture so quickly, that the effects that were originally obtained by them barely reach us now. In the mere 30 years since Doom came out the effects of the original are so diminished that a good amount of innovation has come through strategising ways of restoring the original intensity of feeling one might have felt playing it originally without knowledge of either it or any games in its genre.

 

I think games, relying so much on film, think that they can look at the problems films faced as it reached its current maturity, and try to solve the problems they did in the same timely manner; but the problems games face are really difficult, and they become even more difficult as technology improves. A common report w/ the original Doom was a feeling of loneliness that I don't think any modern player of the game would feel similarly. How can we design a game to prod and pull in such a way when whatever effect we might be able to get out of them might be diminished through the mere march of a few years of tech? With games more than anything else to really appreciate them I have to adopt a persona of 'someone who lives in the year of release -- and how would I respond to the game under these conditions'. There are a good few games that last without this test but doing this manoeuvre amplifies such games further.

 

Understanding how a game can push-pull contrary to other media has not really been understood yet, and it will never be understood as we now enter an era where games bloat budgets into the 100 million's and then fire all the people doing 80-hr weeks for the fucker. Even (prose) literature, I think, took two/three centuries to understand itself and what it could really do, and that's with the easy piggybacking off people well-grasping related forms such as drama. So the slump is inevitable; we're past the innovation phase and we now have to figure out -- what 'is' a videogame, and what 'can' a videogame do? Basically, we're in the 'victorian'-era of videogames right now. Steam and game pass usw. do for games presently what WH Smith used to do for literature back then.

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I'm 41 years old and I've never stopped enjoying new games. I hear this refrain so much from people of all ages and I'm just going to say this: you're not getting old, games aren't getting worse, you're just depressed.

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Posted (edited)

I find AAA games to be trash but there's still some fine indie games that come out every year that are more worth your time and attention. The new Rim World DLC is coming out and that game while not new per se is one of the most addicting non Doom games I've ever played.

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