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Kidd Ryze

2D Platformers Are Getting REALLY Redundant Nowadays...

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I really can't stand all of these 2D Platformers coming out in recent times. For one, most of them don't offer anything new besides a gimmick, which is interesting at times, but get boring quick. On top of that, these retro callbacks have really overstayed their welcome. Back when Megaman 9 and Bionic Commando: Rearmed came out, these games we're interesting, fun, and nostalgic. But now, because it's all we see, it seems like all the devs are becoming lazy and focusing too much to catering to old gamers. And while there still is some 3D platformers, do I need to mention that literally 90% of them are just 2D platformers in 3D?! Games like Super Mario 3D Land/World and Sonic Lost World are just 2D platformers in 3D. Similar stage design, boring level tropes, very small scope, linear stages, unappealing visuals, not a lot of "wow" factor, very underwhelming (especially compared to gems like Super Mario 64 and Sonic Adventure) There's no worlds to explore or objectives to do, two key factors to 3D platformers. This is why the 6th generation of gaming was the best in my eyes because they had a slew of interesting 3D platformers that capitalized on what the 5th generation brought us. They had worlds to explore, objectives to complete, basically having more, oh I don't know, EFFORT! All the 3D platformer goodness that we got from the last generations are slowly fading and I don't see them making a return sadly. 

So all in all, the platformer genre is getting really boring because they just keep doing the same shit they've been doing for decades now. I'm getting really sick of this trend and it needs to stop.
 
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These modern platformers don't cater to me! Clearly they had no effort into them!

Surely you could've phrased it better than sounding like a great big rant about wanting story in your games? Regardless, everything moves by demand. If platformers nowadays focus on being obstacle courses and have success with it, clearly it's because there's still demand for it. On the other hand, there's increasing demand for platformers with story, so those will also surely return.

Or hey, even better. Lots of these "retro" platformers that appeared appeared because it's people making them on their own to return to what they liked as a kid.

You see where I'm going here?

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These modern platformers don't cater to me! Clearly they had no effort into them!

Surely you could've phrased it better than sounding like a great big rant about wanting story in your games? Regardless, everything moves by demand. If platformers nowadays focus on being obstacle courses and have success with it, clearly it's because there's still demand for it. On the other hand, there's increasing demand for platformers with story, so those will also surely return.

Or hey, even better. Lots of these "retro" platformers that appeared appeared because it's people making them on their own to return to what they liked as a kid.

You see where I'm going here?

 

I see your point, and I seriously hope more 3D platformers like the ones we got back in the 6th generation will make a comeback, because those we're really deep and fun to me.

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I disagree. 2d platformers are still bringing now stuff to the table, they have a right to stick around as they inspired so many other franchises in gaming history. Why ignore a gaming icon?

 

On the otherhand, the lack of 3d platformers might also have something to do with the downfall of so many companies over recent years. Rare are gone and with it, also Banjo-Kazooie and Conker. The company behind Ty the Tasmanian Tiger had suffered major cuts so it's not what it once was. Crash Bandicoot is gone, do we know if he's officially returning yet? Jak and Daxter have taken a break so Naughty Dog can work on other things. Ratchet and Clank and Sly Cooper are still around I think, but they are Sony exclusives. Blinx the Time Sweeper has totally disappeared.

 

While recent ones are just poor in general. Like Knack for instance. But Tearway was good apparently.

 

The point is, if we are going to get any new 3d platformers, they'd probably have to be totally new IPs. And these days, developers are a lot more timid in trying to do something new as it may cost them everything. At least that's how I view things.

Plus making a full 3d platformer would be very harder or maybe even impossible for indie developers.

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I can't think of a single level in 3D Land/World that would work just as well in 2D.  They completely take advantage of the 3D space, just because they're linear it doesn't make them any less 3D games (granted, 3D World does have a tiny handful of enforced 2D sections, not denying that, but they are in no way the majority).

 

I think what you mean by your post is you want the free-roaming collectathon genre back right?  I can understand that, it has died off, but unfortunately it's just not a genre that appeals to the mainstream anymore, times do change.  Hopefully A Hat in Time and... the other indie game I forgot the name of with the anthro characters, might be the start of a re-ignited passion for the genre.

 

 

 

I just want to point out though that all these 2D games are coming from small, young studios who don't have the budget to make expansive 3D games.  2D platformer is a popular genre for pick-up and play games and has a rich history to draw from for inspiration and education on game design.  And just from my own general memory, only about 50% use a retro art style and out of that 40% is only retro-styled and takes full advantage of not actually being limited by memory/colour palettes/limited layers for backgrounds.

 

 

 

The one thing I won't say I care for in modern 2D platformers is how many of them are heavily puzzle based or extremely high difficulty that requires repeated play and failure before mastering as a gimmick.  I mean nothing inherently wrong with this, it makes them more original games, just not to my taste.  The best new IP 2D platformer I've played lately was Puppeteer, which had an amazing art style, an original gimmick to the movement, but was still a straight up platforming romp with long levels that valued skill over problem-solving without being gruellingly difficult.

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Well, I think another thing you have to remember is that a lot of these platform games are indie titles. Crating a 3D platformer, I imagine, takes a lot more time ,resources, and money, whereas a 2D platform game is much ,much simpler. I think there are ways to innovate it, too. It's just a matter of how you do it.

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So, 2D Platformers are the First Person Shooters, then?

 

I was just about to bring that up myself. The 'overdone' genres seem to cycle through every few years and this exact complaint has been leveled at most other genres. There are still loads of games in many other genres coming out, personally I'm happy to see the revival of 2D Platformers in full force but that is just me.

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In my opinion, the rise of 2D platformers in recent years is one of the best things to happen to the industry. I may be a little biased, having grown up with the megadrive, 2d platforming is probably my favourite genre of games so obviously I'm going to be happy that they make a comeback. But the reason I think it's great for the industry is that most of these games are made by indie companies and it's these companies that are the ones finally bringing some innovation to the table. In an era where big companies are the ones churning out the same games year after year with only slight modifications to tell them apart, the indie scene has been a haven of originality an ingenuity.

 

The reason 2d platforming is so popular is that it's a relativly easy genre for a small team to work on. You can easily repeat assets in different levels and it doesn't require as much animation as a full 3d game (assuming you're going for a more retro styled game). But the companies are also bringing a lot of innovation to the table, games like Fez of Braid for example which have interesting game mechanics or Limbo with has a unique artstyle that you simply wouldn't see in a triple A release. Even the games that don't give uch in the way of innovation can be great too, not everything needs to be a gamechanger, they can still just be fun experiences.

 

So yeah....I totally disagree with you.

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The fact that 2D platformers have been dead for so long kinda destroys the entire OP's argument. I like that 2D platformers are making a comeback. Its way better than endless FPS's left and right.

 

That said, 3D platformers should make a comeback, too. They're both good in their own ways. I'd love to see another Donkey Kong 3D platformer. Nintendo can do something very good with the DK franchise by switching between doing both 3D and 2D DK games, just like they have plans to do more 2D Metroid games again. I don't know if we'll see 3D DK games come back (the only one was DK64), but it'd be neat for that to come back as well.

 

 

2D Platformers are back, but 3D Platformers haven't died. They're just taking a break for right now. As others have said, too, a lot of 3D Platform developers/publishers died because the games were being done to death and weren't getting anywhere, which allowed 2D Platformers to rise again. Hopefully soon we'll have a mix of both 2D and 3D Platforming very much alive and active all at once.

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I might get some flack for this but I've been extremely disappointed in the indie game line up. You always see a kickstarter of a guy that wants to make a 2D platformer with NES graphics. The issue is, most of these don't even try anything new. They just recycle what we've already played but do it worse. Just because you're indie doesn't mean you have to make the same old tired out 8 bit platformer. I give props to Shovel Knight as it does it in a cool way. Other titles? Meh.

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I might get some flack for this but I've been extremely disappointed in the indie game line up. You always see a kickstarter of a guy that wants to make a 2D platformer with NES graphics. The issue is, most of these don't even try anything new. They just recycle what we've already played but do it worse. Just because you're indie doesn't mean you have to make the same old tired out 8 bit platformer. I give props to Shovel Knight as it does it in a cool way. Other titles? Meh.

 

And that's my issue. Many 2D platformers are just the same shtick. I can appreciate many of them as great games, but all of these repetitious indie games are really overrated.

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How many of these games do you actually play?  Or do you just see the 8-bit graphics and tune out?  I can't think of a single popular 2D indie game that doesn't do something that gives it a unique identity gameplay-wise.

 

There are a lot of ones that don't but... they aren't popular or well-received like the others.  They just kind of non-offensively float around in the background on all the online game services, there if you look deep enough but hardly well-known.  And unfortunately even then they aren't really fuel for an argument for more 3D games because if they didn't exist it's not like 3D platformers would be being made instead, due to previous points about budget for fledgling studios etc.

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And that's my issue. Many 2D platformers are just the same shtick. I can appreciate many of them as great games, but all of these repetitious indie games are really overrated.

Are they really? I don't generally pay specific attention to indies, so I generally only gain awareness of those games that gain a lot of praise. All I can remember did so because they had something special or unique, from Fez' view-changing to Cave Story simply being so immersive and well-made. Can't really think of one that didn't deserve its praise.

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It's natural, when a medium becomes open to the masses (as game creation increasingly is becoming), that the signal to noise ratio is going to go to shit. Sturgeon's law and all. We're seeing a lot of indie 2D platformers because they're among the easiest kind of games for amateurs to make, plus the nostalgia for the classics, and naturally a lot of them just aren't going to be very good, because so many of them are made by amateurs. 3D games, on the other hand, are significantly more complex and there are less powerful but user-friendly tools available to create them. One dude can slap together a cheap SMB clone in a day or so, but it'd take a lot more work to get the ball rolling on a SM64 clone.

Though I would say you're mischaracterizing current 3D platformers. SM3DW and SLoW are not just 2D games in 3D. What you're actually lamenting is the death of the collectathon or open-word platformer, not the death of 3D platformers.

In any case, it's probably just a matter of time before there's a 3D platformer indie renaissance. It's just a matter of making the right tools and getting them in the hands of the right people.

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Okay, no. We don't do video-only responses, especially when it's just to be rude. Knock it off.

 

....

 

In response to the topic, by the way, yeah I'm very tired of 2D platformers but I understand why they're being made.

 

Indie developers can't really do much more than 2D and it does give some leeway for creativity whenever they don't exactly have the resources to make a AAA game, but at the same time most of the games that come out of it are really just pixellated "retraux" schlock that tries too hard to cater to the good ol' days of 8 bit / 16 bit games, which yes, even the best indie games are at fault for. It only gets worse when the creativity levels of most of these games go for really blocky, rectangular character/environment designs, as if just to emphasize the whole "hey look! we're doing pixel art wooOOOoo" thing.

 

It's like a total reverse of how the games they love so much used to be. Games back then, while sticking to a style that looked good at the time, were always trying to build their way up and try to push the limits of the consoles they were on. Now designers go out of their way to look oversimplified, so the touch is somewhat lost in translation. If they want to get into the right mindset of things, they'd have to work as a developer pretending they're working under the limitations of a NES or Genesis or something, instead of just doing it for the flair, because it's not very impressive whenever literally every sidescroller indie game since Cave Story hasn't gave a crap if it looks just like Cave Story or not.

 

In short, I'm very alright with 2D indie platformers if they have extremely satisfying controls, a unique and efforted art style, and don't cash in on the nostalgia factor too much. A lot of them do these things though, so the genre just feels like a big ol' murk.

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