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Why can't American video game developers make games like Horizon or The Witcher?


Spectre1

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Why don't American video game developers make games with awesome storylines, settings, and memorable characters? If you look at games that are pushing this medium at least in the area of storytelling like Horizon Zero Dawn, Life is Strange, The Witcher, and Mass Effect is that they are not developed in America. Horizon in the Netherlands, Life is Strange in France, Zelda in Japan, The Witcher in Poland, and Mass Effect in Canada.

Why aren't there any games like that developed in America? Are there not enough Americans becoming game developers? Are American game developers less risk averse? Are American video game writers less creative?

Would you like to see Disney or Microsoft open a game studio based on pushing the storytelling aspects of video games? Disney did make movies aimed at an older audience and and even an M rated video game called Turok under the Touchstone label. If Disney is going to make games I would hope they would choose a cooler and more memorable name for their studio.

Is the game industry too crowded for another Bioware or CD Projekt Red?

 

I hope Bioware creates another universe, characters, and story after Anthem and Dragon Age 4!

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I think America has given way to other markets a bit. Largely because cost of living here is still so high. CDPR has talked openly how Poland has a low cost of living, but they can sell the game at a high/full market price in markets that use a stronger currency. Like North America and Western Europe. The founder has also talked about trying to reach the Chinese audience. Something they will certainly push for with Gwent and 2077.

 

HZD I think was a little bit of a success story, any developer could turn around and produce something like that given the proper funding, market, and creative team.

 

Also America has a lot of old studios that still fill the needs of the niche that made them famous. Bethesda does open world rpgs. id Tech does high octant first person shooters.

 

Naughty Dog (Uncharted, The Last of Us) are US based and gave us memorable characters. Santa Monica is doing the upcoming God of War which looks great.

 

Imo, you're kind of picking and choosing.

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It comes down to a budget. I Poland you'd pay 1/4 to 1/10 of what you'd pay for similar tasks (depending on the US location), so they get more creative time and more manhours for production.

 

The other thing is, even though they earn this much less than the US counterparts, they are still paid well above the average wages and are considered fairly wealthy, which gives an extra motivation kick.

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I think they have but just in different forms ;)

 

I'd stack up games like Super Meat Boy (platforming perfection) up to Witcher 3 even though they are not the same genre.

Just what do you think you're doing?! You dare to come between me and my prey? Is it a habit of yours to scurry about, getting in the way and causing bother?

 

What are you still bothering me for? I'm a Knight. I'm not interested in your childish games. I need my rest.

 

Begone! Lest I draw my nail...

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You know one could accuse you of throwing shade on Obsidian and the former Troika and Black Isle Studios.

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"All of life’s lessons come with a price…
We may learn a lesson, and things may get better in the end…
So that’s the trade off…life experience for exhaustion… wisdom for innocence.
There may be a happy ending to our stories…
but we paid for that with little pieces of our souls and we will never get those back."

-Austin Lunn

 

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You know one could accuse you of throwing shade on Obsidian and the former Troika and Black Isle Studios.

 

When was the last time you saw a game done by such in a AAA format?

 

I mean i love PoE and Tyranny, but it's a different product segment.

 

The only AAA titles i play are from Firaxis and Creative Assembly and even those are on the lower end of AAA titles in terms of budgets and scale of games - they offer a ton of replayability though

Edited by Darkpriest
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These days, it's mostly about getting the multiplayer audience. If you can do that, then you're golden.

 

Call of Duty and Battlefield are doing great, so that's why people want to copy them. Ubisoft (I know not the US of A), have found a formula to their games that is apparently appreciated by many players.

 

AAA companies try to do whatever it takes to sell as much as possible and try to make their games accessible to a ton of people.

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There's never really been a significant enough audience to make AAA rpgs. Most of the games you might throw into that category are open world action games with streamlined character progression systems (not that these can't be fun). Outside of maybe Japan, rpgs have always been niche.

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Why can't Bethesda make a game like Fallout 1, 2, New Vegas...oh wait, that's a different story.

Because they keep getting rid of their writers. First was kirkbride who made the lore and the last RPG (one of my favs), got rid of the ones who wrote the questlines in Oblivion, replaced the people who wrote for FO3.

Being on their forums for years, there are countless people who don't even do the quests and rather explore and play Minecraft hence the abomination of FO4...sadly Bethesda does listen to their customers in many areas they shouldn't.

They just don't think writers are important for their games anymore.

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To be honest, quest design was never their strong side, though. Even in Morrowind you can see this a lot. Only difference makes the writing itself.

"only when you no-life you can exist forever, because what does not live cannot die."

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To be honest, quest design was never their strong side, though. Even in Morrowind you can see this a lot. Only difference makes the writing itself.

I will agree. Morrowind quests weren't anything to write home about but the main quest at least was pretty good, I dare say their best attempt. Oblivion I feel like is the game with their best quest designs. Not spectacular but I enjoyed them.

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Mass Effect, pushing this medium, hahahahhahaha

 

"Here's a random list of games I like, why can't America make these"

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The problem is political correctness and to many interest groups that makers need to cater to and corporate game making.

Authors don't have freedom to make the game they want, instead they are handed a list of things that "have to be in" and cut content "that's not allowed to be in". 

And what's come out is often bland flashy and uninteresting product.

 

This is not true. I mean it makes for a great conspiracy theory, but any resemblance to the real world is coincidental at best.

Edited by Belle Sorciere
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U.S. entertainment tends to ward the action-oriented, whereas historically Europe perhaps favors the comedy/tragedy drama... which is more story-oriented.

"It has just been discovered that research causes cancer in rats."

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U.S. entertainment tends to ward the action-oriented, whereas historically Europe perhaps favors the comedy/tragedy drama... which is more story-oriented.

 

Because in Europe we had an actual culture, starting from Ancient Greece.

 

In US, you got cast outs and mentality of gun hoe to build the way of life, so higher forms of cultural entertainment and exercise for brain cells are as alien for you as a gas form of Oxygen on Pluto.

 

Kappa - Praise GabeN the Lord allmighty.

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:grin:

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I'm the enemy, 'cause I like to think, I like to read. I'm into freedom of speech, and freedom of choice. I'm the kinda guy that likes to sit in a greasy spoon and wonder, "Gee, should I have the T-bone steak or the jumbo rack of barbecue ribs with the side-order of gravy fries?" I want high cholesterol! I wanna eat bacon, and butter, and buckets of cheese, okay?! I wanna smoke a Cuban cigar the size of Cincinnati in the non-smoking section! I wanna run naked through the street, with green Jell-O all over my body, reading Playboy magazine. Why? Because I suddenly may feel the need to, okay, pal? I've SEEN the future. Do you know what it is? It's a 47-year-old virgin sitting around in his beige pajamas, drinking a banana-broccoli shake, singing "I'm an Oscar Meyer Wiene"

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Mass Effect, pushing this medium, hahahahhahaha

 

"Here's a random list of games I like, why can't America make these"

 

The whole post is a ctrl+v from a thread in uBSN (and possibly other places), in keeping with OP's drive-by habits. Not sure what's exactly the motivation, but I doubt it's worth the effort.

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- When he is best, he is a little worse than a man, and when he is worst, he is little better than a beast.

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The problem is political correctness and to many interest groups that makers need to cater to and corporate game making.

Authors don't have freedom to make the game they want, instead they are handed a list of things that "have to be in" and cut content "that's not allowed to be in". 

And what's come out is often bland flashy and uninteresting product.

 

This is not true. I mean it makes for a great conspiracy theory, but any resemblance to the real world is coincidental at best.

 

 

How's that conspiracy theory? Authors have made that claims for years in interviews now that corporate superiors get involved in the creation process, that their ideas are cut and some content is forced upon them to appease SJW groups. It's out there, just read some interviews.

 

 

"SJWs" don't have that kind of power. They've become little more than a bugbear to people who can't handle the thought that their way of doing things isn't the best.

 

Edit: An article about this.

Edited by Belle Sorciere
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