You are not connected. Please login or register

Character action/Hack n slash/beat em up genre names

Go to page : 1, 2  Next

View previous topic View next topic Go down  Message [Page 1 of 2]

I want to discuss the various terms used to define this genre, as it varies greatly and would help those outside and in the know to understand them more.

First it's necessary to examine its origins, that being namely beat em ups, shoot em ups and fighting games.

For example of how it can be inaccurate, calling devil may cry a hack n slash may fit calling god hand this does not, as god hand is a beat em up.

Both are character action which is the evolution of the classic beat em up formula. Seeing it like this can help see the origins and relation to something like dmc and bayonetta to god hand and vanquish.

To note I'm not sure where character action term came from but it is a recent term. It can also be found under spectacle fighter page on tv tropes.

Another name may be stylish action games or extreme action games.

To note dmc1 director hideki kamiya was inspired by arcade beat em ups and shoot em ups to make dmc1, this influence is very much present in his spiritual sister series to dmc bayonetta.

View user profile
A good topic. I generally preferred to just call them "action games" or rarely "character action games" but that always got confusing as games like Wonderful 101 aren't about a singular character for instance. Titles like "Hack and Slash" get confused with games like Diablo and Torchlight, or just other mindless button mashers like the Lord of the Rings games on the Playstation 2.
Titles like "stylish action games" and "Cuhrayzee games" don't do it enough justice in my opinion, focusing too much on one style of game within this genre as shortly explained here: http://www.stingermagazine.com/2017/03/weapon-switching-quality-or-quantity.html

That said this is a thing more than one genre is struggling with. Mark Brown made a good video about genre-conventions in this video:



I think the title "action game" suffices with a suffix added onto it. So for instance Uncharted is an "action adventure game", Vanquish an "action shooter" and God Hand an "action beat 'm up".  What's your take on that?

View user profile http://forum.stingermagazine.com
I have frequented mark brown before and this video is what got me thinking in such a way about it. I've always tried to find that balance of genres being broad but specific enough to understand and represent certain games. I try to see the correlation between these games and  find myself seeing how they all apply various aspects and in different ways but do have clear shared mechanics and concepts.

I always called dmc1 as a kid an action game also.
Fighting games tend to share such things and i considered them kin to this genre and many fighting games are unconventional from the standard definition, like say wind jammers, arms, lethal league and smash bros so the same can be done for action games as long as the definition allows for such oddities to remain under a given banner

Souls is considered an action rpg and I agree with this, but souls is now considered its own sub genre and this has me skeptical and I'd rather see more variation than what's being presented. It reminds me to of how from soft made their own ninja gaiden clone ninja blade. It's sort of how platinum use bayonetta combat as a template for their other action games which has led to less innovation and variation, and as you put before ninja Gaiden is more about efficiency then style.

If something like platformer is ok for a genre then action works well also, I'd rather not be too specific so as to avoid stagnation.

Re4 and vanquish are very unconventional for 3rd person shooters, so not everything is like say gears of war, which is what many imitate sadly enough.

I like to consider re4-5-6 third person shooters with beat em up mechanics, this is how I described it to my dad when we started playing re5-6 and it helped him understand to play better with smart use of melee prompts.

Games are quite hard to classify at times due to how multifaceted they can be.

I always saw these games as a evolution of beat em ups. Similar to how mario changed when it became 3D platformers I think the same can be said for dmc and god hand. Notably how ninja gaiden evolved from being action platformers and beat em ups to 3D also.

It is odd and intriguing to discuss to say the least, vanquish is interesting due to how it is a 3rd person shooter with Melee moves straight from god hand and even slo mo mechanics as platinum usually have in some form.

View user profile
One thing to note about genre is how less and less it sees use these days. I don't know if you still read gaming magazines - I still have a subscription to Edge - but they used to note "genre" next to a game; but they no longer do. Nor do other magazines or even reviewing sites. Generally the best way to communicate back then if a new game was out was to say "it's this genre". Now you're better of saying "it's like Bayonetta" - when describing for instance Devil May Cry.

I do still feel that giving Souls its own genre to be pushing it. It is, as you noted, an "Action RPG" (action game with combat featuring RPG elements). It has a few distinctive elements that set it apart from the rank and file but games like Lords of the Fallen are just "Action RPG" with some elements borrowed from their "Action RPG" brother Demon's Souls (not Dark Souls, as everyone keeps forgetting what came before it).

What I do have to note when you mentioned Resident Evil 4 and Vanquish and how they contain action elements, is that it's more in the design philosophy in my opinion. Enemies in RE4 and Vanquish follow the same rules as those in games like Ninja Gaiden etc. They have unique tells, patterns, openings etc. Compare this to other games where enemies just randomly dash forward and attack without rime or reason or use hit-scan guns this makes every fight feel 'under your control' if you know the game. You cannot no-damage Metroid Prime if you wanted to, the Pirates will hit you always as it is in the nature of the game. If you put a Romanov-N from Vanquish into Ninja Gaiden, it would work. If you put a soldier from Call of Duty into Ninja Gaiden, it wouldn't.

View user profile http://forum.stingermagazine.com
You may find this interesting.



View user profile
If u r not aware vast the shell bullet is a fan of these types of games also and has done some insightful vids on them

View user profile

Birdman


Moderator
In regards to DMC and Godhand, when you think about it, what's really the reason DMC would be called a hack 'n' slash, and Godhand a beat 'em up?

I always viewed both as straight up action games. Why? Because of core mechanics. Think about it. Dante is using a sword or other bladed weapons for the most part, and Gene uses entirely his fist and feet, but ultimately what's the difference?

There really isn't one. The core mechanics are action game mechanics in both of these games, so whether you're slashing an enemy with a sword or punching and kicking them to death, end result is you're doing damage.

To examine further, there's no mechanical difference to landing a sword attack in DMC, to a punch in GH. As an example, in real life there is a HUGE difference between having a knife connect with you, and a fist/foot. If the games actually used mechanics that reflected that, I believe we could separate them into these categories.

If GH is a beat 'em up, why? If you put a sword in Gene's hand the mechanics don't change. He still simply deals damage.

I'm actually not entirely sure of the beat 'em up origins, but I'm guessing something like Streets Of Rage or Final Fight?

These mechanically don't play anything like GH obviously, though they both do have a similar setup in that you move from area to area being assaulted by freaks.

So I agree completely that they are evolutions of the old formula. But I think I'm going off track now. Back to the comparison between GH and DMC, I don't think that they should be classed differently at all.

But having said all that, yeah the lines have been blurred with certain games though I still think look at their core, base mechanics is the key.

Also want to mention the 'spectacle fighter' term. I rarely hear this, but it seems odd. What is this trying to say?

View user profile
I think beat em up works well as a term for them, as it acknowledge it's origins and allows for interpretation. Technical beat em ups and character action work for the more mechanically nuanced ones,

Regarding wonderful 101 I think counts since the gameplay implores you to use the wonderful 101 as a cohesive unit, hence the unite morph and other team based mechanics. Similar to pickmin where u control olumar directly and the pick men indirectly, but function as a cohesive whole while still having a single leader as the player character.

Given the wide breadth of such games on the technical action side I think it's terms like these that allow for greater variation than souls likes could have as they are now, so I don't think such a issue is present with the roster we have built up.

To add, teams have different approaches and interpret such action games differently leading to drastically different games such as vanquish to ninja gaiden, having applied many of the same concepts differently for varied outcomes.

View user profile
Oh hello birdman I just wrote this and u have appeared, ill respond shortly.

View user profile
Regarding spectacle fighter I believe Yahtzee of zero punctuation fame coined it, but I don't find it to be as accurate as character action and beat em ups as fighter is already a term for fighting games and as such would just confuse everyone more , though fighting games are kin to beat em ups as they have influenced each other and have even made crossovers(Cody and Hugo from final fight are in street fighter games, bayonetta in smash4, Paul Phoenix and martial law are in urban chaos, ryu hayabusa in dead or alive etc)

View user profile
Streets of rage and final fight are notable beat en ups of influence, god hand specifically harkens to them while adapting and innovating classic beat em up mechanics for 3rd person.

dmc has always had a kick boxing moveset for dantes fist weapons(ifrit, beowulf, gilgamesh) and swords r one of many melee weapons dante can aquire(nunchuks, guitar, summon swords), alongside many fire arms(twin pistols, shotguns, sniper, bazooka, grenade launcher).

bayonetta default weapons are kick boxing moves with twin legs and hand pistols whilst also being able to summon giant fists as wicked weaves, among other unique weapons like ice skates, nunchuk revolvers and bazooka tonfas. her katana shuraba even has unique kill animations for mobs slain by it as opposed to most other weapons that simply explode angels. bayonettas moveset inputs are moslty universal among all weapons.

View user profile
You can find spectacle fighter for a page on tv tropes it lists afformentioned types of games i dont think it is accuratte and informative of the origins of character action games.

vanquish counts as it applies core character action design to 3rd person cover shooters, while adapting and if played certain ways, can trancend simple cover shooter affairs.

This vid can help. mark brown is a dear for his sheer quality of education for game design discussion

View user profile
Double dragon is another long running and increasingly conveluted series that has been through many studios and is mainly classic side scrolling beat em up, see double dragon neon for how it compares to god hand(ducking blows, dodge rolls, sweeps, juggles, animation cancels) those are thingd to look out for.

Streets of rage 3 added dodge rolls much like double dragon neon, beat em ups tend to have grabs also.

the correlation becomes more clear with study of core mechanics.

These types of games have that can be used in various ways, god hand has side steps, backflips, up dodges and ground dodging, as well as counter hits which can effectively nutrualise a enemies offense with a well timed strike for skilled players with the risk of miss timing and taking damage(high side kick a stage 1 basic fatty in god hand to see what i mean)

dmc3 introduced royal guard style which has parry moves. nero from dmc4 devil bringer arm can grab and be timed to counter mobs(see angelo credo dmc4 boss for sick spear grab reversal)

View user profile
Weapon items used by mobs and around the stages in beat em ups can usually used as limited use disposable weapons(pipes,knives) along with food items from stages and dead mobs, just like god hand. in god hand swords can be used and function identically to other weapon pick ups(2x4, hammer, rocket launcher) as kicks and punches are genes bread and butter.

in jest their are many ways to beat doods up in games, so some games have exponentially more ways to beat doods up than others.

some are more iterative and lack advancements of core mechanics(god of war) some innovate on what was laid before to reach new heights(dmc3,ninja gaiden black, god hand, viewtiful joe)

try a new formula through expanding and adapting mechanics from other genres(vanquish for 3rd person cover shooters, so subversive and reconstructive that you can almost always play and avoid cover entirely given player skill)

these types of games respect player agency, skill and interactivitey. they demand the very best from the player and will reward the dedicated with near limitless amounts of depthful, player driven depthful comat mechanics.  

this is very inciteful GDC talk by platinum games:



Last edited by Gabriel Phelan Lucas on Mon Jul 31, 2017 5:57 am; edited 1 time in total

View user profile

Birdman


Moderator
Interesting points.

So what if an action game has all (or some) of those things but you use weapons? Can we refer to them as beat 'em ups?

View user profile
By weapons do you mean fire arms or swords?

Character action being the evolution of beat em ups and other arcade type action games(fighting games, shmups) have adapted and expanded their mechanics to include elements of said genres to transcend simply classic beat em ups of old, but calling god hand and dmc and such is a way of acknowledging their origins, at least a core part of it.

If guns then vanquish, which is what you get if you apply character action design and mechanics to 3rd person cover shooters, so it's a hybrid of them.

the technical side like god hand and dmc are very complex when you study the extent of the mechanics, many of which where originally bugs and some may not even be intended, but add to nuanced gameplay with careful and intelligent use of player skill. They can often appear deceptively simple on a casual level, see ign review of god hand and many reviews for vanquish(Jim sterling) and be cast aside and even despised by the masses. It's a very niche genre and their designers philosophies are not discussed much for that, it's also a very Japanese genre, given how disproportionately many are Japanese made. A great number of which have been made by members of clover studios whos key members(hideki kamiya,shinji mikami,atsushi inaba) left capcom to become platinum games. Their last game as clover was god hand.


An example of effective mechanics use in vanquish:



Last edited by Gabriel Phelan Lucas on Mon Jul 31, 2017 6:54 am; edited 1 time in total

View user profile

Birdman


Moderator
I'm mainly referring to the DMC/GH comparison. Is simply holding a weapon of any kind (we'll go with melee weapons for now) what decides if an action game should be classed as hack 'n' slash? On the basic level.

View user profile
That is often all that's needed for most but we acknowledge that it is not so simple. Royta has made a comment up top regarding hack n slash. I don't use the term it's too vague and doesn't convey the correlation between GH and DMC. One could call any game with swords hack n slash which misses the fundamental point of them and doesn't help determine core mechanics like character action and beat em up do when discussed. The former came from the latter so they are often brought up together due to char action being intrinsically linked to them.

Many beat em ups have swords as primary weapons; Neo Geo sengoku 1-2-3(not to be confused with sengoku basara, another beat em up similair to dynasty warriors) warriors of fate, tmnt turtles in time has the turtles use their signature weapons.

Also punisher arcade beat em up has sections where you can shoot mobs.

View user profile
I grew up with classic beat em ups and arcade games mostly via emulation as a kid, my dad used to take me to arcades and I would play house of the dead 2 and metal slug notably so he emulated them for me so even though I'm only 20 I have a diverse knowledge of these games. More in that I am aware of many obscure arcade games from that, royta and others really know their stuff.

See Mike Kob YouTube and lp archive of his god hand lp he has done many on it and is partly responsible for finding much of the tech hidden within god hand.

View user profile

Birdman


Moderator
So would you say that if Gene used swords, but the exact same mechanics and everything else in the game was the same, you would still class GH as a beat 'em up? and I mean EVERYTHING is the same except you attack with a sword instead of your fists.

View user profile
Hideki kamiya(director of dmc1,viewtiful Joe,bayonetta,wonderful 101) is noted to be inspired by some arcade games like space harrier, gradius, punch out and castlevania also, likes to put homages to them in his games. So these games have had an influence on his games on a fundamental level. But applied in different ways so it's not always easy to tell on a casual level.

Consider how soul caliber and last samurai are predominantly weapon based fighting games but are not called hack n slash. It's very much the same for dmc.

View user profile
Yes I would since that's pretty much what dmc, ninja gaiden and bayonetta do, but with weapons and have their own mechanics and mobs to make them distinct.

They all have things like juggles, launchers, animation cancelling combos, and defensive moves that show they are the same genre but apply said mechanics differently.

View user profile
God hand is distinct in that it is only genes hand to hand martial arts prowess you use as your main move set. God hand is very good example of what a beat me up can be when it evolves to character action. It even has many classic beat me up and street fighter moves like suplexes, shoryuken and spin kicks. So if god hand was identical baring using weapons instead it would make god hand not the same as we know it, it takes away what makes it god HAND ya know;)



Last edited by Gabriel Phelan Lucas on Mon Jul 31, 2017 7:42 am; edited 1 time in total

View user profile
Say Dmc without swords would be hard to imagine, and dmc has guns too so it would be very different without them. I think mgr:revengeance is what god hand might look like if it was with swords, similar perspective.

View user profile
What would you say god hand would be as you put it?

View user profile
How would one apply this logic to others of the genre? It's interesting to note and I like that you inquire as much, I try to be as clear and informative about these games, it can be tricky to talk about on a casual level with someone who doesn't see the correlations between them. Fighting games can also be hard to define when they are unconventional from the previously established pillars(street fighter, tekken, dead or alive, king of fighters) now things like smash, lethal league, arms and power stone are considered by many to be them. Something like power stone can be seen as beat em up due to its 3D arena combat, power stone 2 adds 4 player mode. same as smash i guess. so lines can be blurred as they are kin to fighting games.

View user profile

Birdman


Moderator
I cant seem to figure out how to quote properly here.

They all have things like juggles, launchers, animation cancelling combos, and defensive moves that show they are the same genre but apply said mechanics differently.

This is what I meant by 'core mechanics'. GH has all of these, and usually regardless of the game, these generally function similarly. The only thing it doesn't have is weapons. But in the end fists and weapons are a means to do damage under that umbrella of core mechanics.

Say Dmc without swords would be hard to imagine

Not really. Ifrit, Beowolf, and Gilgamesh show it pretty well.

God hand is distinct in that it is only genes hand to hand martial arts prowess you use as your main move set.

Yeah but ultimately, no weapons ARE weapons. I mean at their base, they are just means to attack and do moves.

What would you say god hand would be as you put it?

I've always referred to GH and others as action games for the above reasons.


View user profile

Birdman


Moderator
casual level

I am actually a veteran of the genre.

What I'm doing is discussing the options, not actually asking out of lack of knowledge.

View user profile

Birdman


Moderator
I am having a little difficulty understanding your English at times though. I'm not entirely sure what you want to say sometimes.

View user profile
Yes agreed, my mind escaped me for a moment about dmc purely firsts haha.

Oh I didn't mean u where casual, sorry if I worded it to imply that.

I'm sort of figuring this out all too.

Yes I'd say the distinction is moot about where it's fists or swords they are just ways to the mechanics of combat.

View user profile
Sorry I got confused with my logic their, I'm not the best at wording things. I agree with you on core mechanics being what defines them.

View user profile
I suppose I was over thinking it. Thank you for pointing my quotes out.

View user profile
I hope we are on the same page now? sorry for the misunderstanding.

View user profile

Birdman


Moderator
No problem. Don't worry about that. It happens.

Yes I'd say the distinction is moot about where it's fists or swords they are just ways to the mechanics of combat.

Yeah this is what I mean. Like sure GH is absolutely heavily inspired by old school beat 'em ups, but given that it follows the formula of most action games, nothing really distinguishes GH and DMC as either hack 'n' slash or beat 'em up. Yeah they have a lot of unique stuff, but again that core set of mechanics that the games are founded on. That's how I see it anyway.

On the other hand, as they are a modern evolution of beat 'em ups, I guess it does pose a problem in terms of exact definition. You have games like Beatdown Fists of Vengenace, Death By Degrees, and GH where the characters mostly use their fists and feet (or grabs).

Overall, I never use the term hack 'n' slash or beat 'em up for these games though I get why people do. I guess everyone's different.

View user profile
the distinction between hack n slash for dmc and god hand being a beat em up is needless and confusing.

View user profile
Yes a unifying term and more specific ones for them all is sort of in flux and we can see clear influences for many stated. I call them beat em ups in general and technical beat em ups for the more complex ones can help but those ones become character action. Action game does suffice and I am fine with that term when it's understood and discussed in depth on how they relate and what makes each a unique take on them

View user profile
I just like to keep the games that inspired them in mind when discussing and defining them. It helps put their being how they are into perspective. I'd rather not be so specific with them so they end up as the same exact games, something that's happening with souls and what happened with doom originally in how no one deviated and experimented with the formula for a while. It happens with all genres.

Heck even platinum uses bayonetta as a base for mgr,transformers devastation and nier automata, but they all have their own mechanics to work with also, making them a variation on bayo template.

View user profile
Of course we both clearly know what genre we are discussing so that already helps our understanding. Newcomers may have trouble at first with how they are called so many different names, so someone who considers dmc a hack n slash might not see the link with god hand and others as much and may be confused as on a surface level things like dmc n god hand can look quite different to the undiscerning eye.

not to mention vanquish which at the time and still now is considered a standard cover shooter by many, which it is far from unless played like one. Which would speak more about the player then the game. Same as how god hand was seen, damn ign*shakes fist furiously*.

View user profile

Birdman


Moderator
Yeah those are good points though I haven't seen or heard of any issues for hack n slash and relation to GH. Not saying they never happen but I've been around a while and haven't noticed anything.

Vanquish though, that definitely would need clarification.

One thing I see often these days is the debate on what is an action RPG. That seems to be where the real confusion lies, in my observation at least.

One positive I see all the time, is people generally seem to know Platinum Games. Whether they like them or not, it seems people largely know what to expect. As soon as you hear the name, you just know.

This created an issue to a degree with Nier A, due to its open world and RPG elements, leading a lot of action genre fans to expect the next Bayonetta or something. But that's another story I guess.

View user profile
It's fine if they don't have an exact definition since many genres are quite general and allow for more varied types and interesting combinations, say how ratchet and clank are 3rd person shooter platformers. or just shooter platformers.

and vanquish again for how it integrates core action game mechanics with 3rd person shooter. or i guess action shooter. i would mention perspective as it is a important distinction that can change a way a game is made and played.

action rpg is 2 genres of games together. games can be so eclectic its tricky to note when a game is more one genre or two or the other. i dont think it needs to be exact.

so keep a genre broad enough for greater variation and avoid stagnation by not being so exact as to codify one specific type of a game as a whole genre in and of itself.

View user profile
Good to see some high quality discussion afoot.

I agree with Bird in terms of this:
Birdman wrote:I always viewed both as straight up action games. Why? Because of core mechanics. Think about it. Dante is using a sword or other bladed weapons for the most part, and Gene uses entirely his fist and feet, but ultimately what's the difference?   There really isn't one. The core mechanics are action game mechanics in both of these games, so whether you're slashing an enemy with a sword or punching and kicking them to death, end result is you're doing damage.

The detailing of how the action is 'communicated', be it via swords, fists, guns or even gravity is semantics. Dante uses his fists when using Beowulf, but the genre stays the same (stupid example but you know what I mean). I do feel the spectacle fighter to be maybe more akin to what Devil May Cry 4 ended up being, be it by design or mistake; at least compared to its previous outings. When looking at fighting games one could call Marvel vs Capcom a spectacle fighter compared to games like Street Fighter II.

A genre is but a name though. I don't want to get too metaphysical but just like everything in life people like to put elements in containers. Artstyles have 'genres' which barely ever hit the mark. Speaking as someone who's a full time artist with a degree in it, one of the first things we are taught and then unlearned right after is 'styles' and 'art-streams'. Sure Mannerism and Impressionism have their key features but paintings within such stretches rarely hit the whole mark. It does a disservice to the piece to put it into a container.

I do have to call out Mark Brown on one thing: his voice does a lot too. He knows how to bring a story and relay information but you can see, as he's noted a few times I believe, that he generally plays the games once or twice. To fully understand titles like Vanquish or Devil May Cry more than one simple runthrough is needed. After nearly thirty runs with Vanquish I'm still learning new playstyles, tactics and even animations.

If there is one title I haven't seen in this discussion though it is Rising Zan: Samurai Gunman. If you haven't Lucas, read more about it here: http://www.stingermagazine.com/2017/04/rising-zan-samurai-gunman-inspiration.html

God Hand and Vanquish are a hard note in this discussion though because they are specific reiterations of certain existing genres of old in a modern coating with Mikami's core design philosophy. Mikami has, since his first Resident Evil title, used the mechanics of "learn pattern, use pattern, but allow for creativity" which seeped into his successful RE2 and DMC (in co-working with Kamiya) and his later RE4. One thing that still interests me besides this fact is that the genre was born at nearly the same time by three different companies. Devil May Cry, God of War and Ninja Gaiden's first entries were all in development at the same time; three births to a genre at the same time without communicating. Still takes me aback.

@Birdman About the quoting, there's a little balloon in the text-editor where you can paste in text that you want to quote. I am going to look into adding tagging and gfaqs style quoting if possible in the future. If you have any more recommendations or wants let me know here: http://forum.stingermagazine.com/t10-feedback
Another way to quote is to use "
nameuser wrote:texthere
" (without the ")

@Gabriel Phelan Lucas, you can edit your posts infinity on this forum. There is no timer on it, so if you want to add something you can use an edit :) Is easier and makes for easier reading.



Last edited by Royta/Raeng on Wed Aug 02, 2017 12:56 pm; edited 1 time in total

View user profile http://forum.stingermagazine.com
Action rpg is confusing to define ive noticed also. as in how much is it with one or the other?

platinum im glad are still making them and getting attention especially recently with nier A and vanquish n bayo pc ports seemingly doing all quite well.

i have played nier A and it is really a action game with rpg elements to say the least, and i think its many problems are how action games like bayo and rpg games are fundamentally opposed with their design. since these games r about player growth and mastery of core combat mechanics, rpg have more character growth through leveling up stats, gear, grinding, but those things can interfer with the core combat and player skill. when say u can grind to high level and insta kill all mobs and bosses and they deal little to no damage to u.

like say yakuza series r beat em ups with rpg elements, as u usually level up through combat and quests to buy new moves instead of a stat list like jrpg, which is a smart way to integegrate rpg mechanics that r not intrusive to the action and may even incentivice u to fight more for more moves to unlock.

nioh seems to be having this action rpg issue, so its best to make sure both genre work together rather than contradict each other.

View user profile
Ah yes thnx roy u put things very well, i dont like to be anal with genre names im very laxed with such things really, and we all understand what makes these games what they r and apreciate them regardless of set genre. id rather let games adapt and evolve over time without forcing cast iron molds on everything, its best to let them happen, the journey and not the end product before its even decided and made. much like how dmc was a concept for re4.

im also astounded how many teams so early on and at the same times came to notably distinct yet similair titles, and it shows neither mimiced the other and all have their own take to offer.

View user profile
Its a testament to how well crafted these games r when tech and playstyles r still being discovered, things that where always in these games, like all the stuff mike kob and alps found in god hand by pure accident, recently too. these r the types of games that deserved to be remembered for their achievement in interactivity and player growth and expression.

View user profile
I love how infinetely replayable they r, i play many of them at least once per year and even more. i only recently found out about much of vanquishes tech, i remember one of my earlier playthrus i messed around with how u can behead and damage romanovs on parts of their bodies for different behaviour. and the disk launcher dismemberment and melee uses.

i have been playing god hand these past few weeks and i remember my first run i had no clue how to consistently do the air launch kick, and didnt know how to use the axe kick or sweep. heck i didnt know to use guard broke properly until elvis. a boss i find much easier than mr.gold and silver. i died about 20 times and more each chapter at least, think i took 26hrs to beat god hand first time. half that next time.

ive learnt a lot from mike kob over the yrs from it now im studying it more intently and using moves and mechanics i was not familair with before. like counter hit states, move properties and crowd control.

i played dmc1 3 times this yr, its interesting how u have to play hard before unlocking hard and dmd for difficulty select. my 3rd run was with sparda i didnt know he had yamato with him, dmc3-4 r so respectful to dmc1.

I think fighting games like mvc, xmen vs street fighter r usually dubbed hyper fighters.

rising zan i have been aware of for a bit but only recently started watching mike kobs lp, its intruiging how it foreshadows what would come of the genre, its noteworthy as a missing link from generations of action games.

Staff focused projects was what viewtiful joe was part of right? it explains the games that came out of it, how they made games they wanted to make.



Last edited by Gabriel Phelan Lucas on Mon Jul 31, 2017 10:32 am; edited 1 time in total

View user profile
Gabriel Phelan Lucas wrote:like say yakuza series r beat em ups with rpg elements, as u usually level up through combat and quests to buy new moves instead of a stat list like jrpg, which is a smart way to integegrate rpg mechanics that r not intrusive to the action and may even incentivice u to fight more for more moves to unlock.

nioh seems to be having this action rpg issue, so its best to make sure both genre work together rather than contradict each other.
I never felt Yakuza to be an RPG. Sure it has elements of unlockables like Ninja Gaiden and God of War do; but I fail to see how that makes it an RPG. Granted I've only played Yakuza: Zero so there's that. On the topic of Nioh and the term "Action RPG" I feel this is hard to balance. When combining two genres one often falters or balance is lost. One reason the greatest games of all time are so great is because they have one core vision. They don't try to be 'this game mixed with that game' or 'this genre with a spice of that'; they want to be the vision the director saw before him. Nioh doesn't have a vision, and it shows. Every step of the way it doesn't know if it wants the player to win because he spent 100 hours on grinding the perfect gear or because he spent hours learning patterns and intricate mechanics; in the end it ends up pleasing neither. Which is generally the case with these types of games. To find a game where it isn't an "action RPG" or an "ACTION rpg" but a true "ACTION RPG" is rare. Even games that get close like Dark Souls fail as in the end stats and builds can see you through (also see: DSPgaming) and players that don't pay attention to stats and gear can be at a severe disadvantage or have fights last near hours (try doing a Four Kings fight with an unupgraded Long Sword at SL1, won't go well). The whole "action RPG" right now is alive and kicking because it pulls two audiences in: the big souls and rpg communities and the fans of the action series who are so desperate they'll buy anything at this point.

Gabriel Phelan Lucas wrote:Ah yes thnx roy u put things very well, i dont like to be anal with genre names im very laxed with such things really, and we all understand what makes these games what they r and apreciate them regardless of set genre. id rather let games adapt and evolve over time without forcing cast iron molds on everything, its best to let them happen, the journey and not the end product before its even decided and made. much like how dmc was a concept for re4.

im also astounded how many teams so early on and at the same times came to notably distinct yet similair titles, and it shows neither mimiced the other and all have their own take to offer.
I wasn't trying to offend you or call you out btw, just stating : )

Gabriel Phelan Lucas wrote:Its a testament to how well crafted these games r when tech and playstyles r still being discovered, things that where always in these games, like all the stuff mike kob and alps found in god hand by pure accident, recently too. these r the types of games that deserved to be remembered for their achievement in interactivity and player growth and expression.
True that. I actually learned of a new type of dodge in Vanquish just yesterday. Apparently if you sit behind a low piece of cover and press dodge to the left or right Sam will do a weird twirly roll; never saw that. What you mentioned is also why I dislike reviews generally; they are too soon. Games need to grow on us, form and expand. To review God Hand back then and to review it now is a completely different spectrum I feel.



Last edited by Royta/Raeng on Mon Jul 31, 2017 10:27 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Styling of post)

View user profile http://forum.stingermagazine.com
Thats fine roy i was making my views clear i didnt take offense in the slightest.

Oh i might have seen that dodge type ill clear up evil within right quick and get onto vanquish.

i dont consider yakuza to be a rpg its what i see it called alongside being a beat em up, but i can see how its considered such, but everything has some sort of unlock tree and exp bar or points for upgrades. one could even call god hand an rpg simply because of its difficulty level system.

i played demons souls and its the only souls i played, i enjoyed it and looking back on it and the whole series is that i find it never reached its potential and iterated far too many times for my liking. its a series that i think lost something of itself with each entry, as in how it relied increasingly on its action without expanding on its combat. when souls have exploration as a factor also, it seems like it would rather be an action game. what i liked with demons souls is how each boss is much more distinct and would have unique quirks to their ai, and environment for players to outwit their foes rather than just another big dood with big sword or big monster in a simple arena that doesnt play much of a factor beyond being a space to fight a boss. which is fine if it had more mechanics to learn and apply but many bosses cant be parried or blocked effectively and beside those options u r left with a simple dodge roll. i dont want to sound like im simplifying things.


take for example the old hero boss, old monk, storm king and fools idol bosses in demons souls, old hero if not for him being blind and fought in a pillar filled hallway he would be just another big dood with big sword the series is so fond of.

i think why i only played demons souls and stopped before the rest was due to its shorter more consice length and worlds sizes, and how novel each boss was especially compared to later entries boss rosters.

demons souls was the first souls and is often disgarded as some sort of proto-souls yet the series lifts wholesale from it without innovating much upon its mechanics. to the point where all but dark souls1 have a level up maiden. other action or rpg series have gone a lot further in a lot less time.
That said i do look forward to playing ds3 and moreso bloodborne eventually.

i think that action rpg can be used as an excuse to have action that isnt refined and complex as action games and same for rpg mechanics and middling somewhere in between. final fantasy has made the transition to action rpg and it shows how they dont want the action to be too complex.

i dont like rpg stuff i find it interferes with my progress as a player i think player skill through experience is more natural to me, since then the only limit for what i can achieve is my dedication to becoming better and being one with a games mechanics rather than an arbitrary number saying i can and cannot wield a weapon properly to deal sufficient damage even though my character is wielding a weapon properly i can see it.

its the issue i have taken with nioh and am reluctant to try it, rpg aspects when applied without care contradict the careful balancing of action difficulty modes. i find its combat to be more innovative and engaging than souls but its holding itself back from being what it could be.

i dont have much against rpg stuff just only when its in my action games, because i didnt order this or moreso i did order action and you gave me rpg as well, which has contaminated the action and makes both elements rather unpleasent to digest.

Or i order my action games from the few places that make them to the quality i am acustomed to and now they have been ropped into the action rpg conga line to pay the bills(platinum) and appease their superiors and masses with whats selling(team ninja)

View user profile
If we are talking about genres I believe RPG has it the most rough, being widely hard to pin down what it actually means. Not sure if anyone here ever played the pen and paper Dungeons and Dragons (or the spin offs like Werewolf, World of Darkness or Rogue Trader etc.) but those games were a combination of 'assuming a role' (Role playing) and generally the usage of stats in combination with dice-roles and acting out your role to determine outcomes of situations. If we go by that moniker barely any of the RPG's are truly "rpg" outside of games like Baulders Gate, Torment and maybe Divinity. Games like Diablo, Final Fantasy and Dark Souls wouldn't be.

About Nioh, if that is your stance (and I can respect that, I too have that stance) avoid it. The game, while fun and vested deeply in Team Ninja's history, is steeped in stats and setups that make or break the game. A fight that is difficulty can be come you mashing [ ] while watching a tv-show at the same time if you have the correct equipment which isn't fun to me.
I am really afraid Platinum will go more into the RPG route after the success of Transformers and Nier, but who knows. We'll see : ) Right now they are one of my favorite developers still, but ever since their few and between flop titles (Star Fox, Korra, Turtles etc.) I am a bit more cautious. Before those titles hit the logo of them on a box was enough to sell me on the game, now not so much anymore.

View user profile http://forum.stingermagazine.com
My main issue with action rpgs r their unwillingness to expand and innovate on their mechanics.

souls specifically has failed to retain its innovations from onee entry to the next, namely how ds2 has renix mob placements, bloodborne as charged attacks, trick weapons and guns that function as a more active parry.

i find nioh and for honor to be what souls could look like if it evolved. i dont think souls combat is nearly as nuanced as god hand and such and dont think say juggles r needed to have more depth, just more mechanics, moves and states to manipulate, such as for honor, a more focused action game that captures a similair look feel to souls combat, while being much more complex than any of them.

id say its the teams making them that dont have the same level of experience as team ninja and platinum, and a markedly different internal mindset.

looking to souls for what a great action game should be is ignoring the real leaders of the genre, the ones who strive to adapt and expand core mechanics in unique and engaging ways. souls became to stuck in its own traditions.

besides this, platinum never set out to make the same exact type of game, such as how bayo is the go to template for transformers, mgr, and nier A, tho all do have their own mechanics to make them a altered take on the same base template.(long list of dial and pause combos, dodge offset and bullet time to simplify)

Thats why we enjoy their games so much for their stubborn creativity, they r not the type of studio to make sequels and iterate.

this vid is another noteworthy example of action rpg done wrong:

i actually played darksiders 1 to completion and enjoyed it, darksiders 2 i played and stopped part way through the second map area(undead kingdom of some sort) as i found it too confused of a game to keep my interest. i was surprised at the mechanics on offer but it forced to many things into itself unlike the first, which is a zelda dungeon puzzle game with god of war combat.

if something like platformers and action rpg can exist then suffice to say action can be its own genre. ultimately action is the term i always keep in my mind when discussing them

Notably fighting games have changed over the years also, adopting unconventional fighters such as for honor, smash bros, arms. windjammers and lethal league.

View user profile
I feel ya and completely agree. The genre does seem a bit 'frozen' when it comes to just simple evolution. Souls brought a breath of fresh air as did the more 'action system' of the later Final Fantasy titles and Vagrant Story - or the more tactical approach as seen in Tactical Ogre and Fire Emblem.

About Platinum Games, I used to agree but it does feel a bit more phoned in these days. Bayonetta, Vanquish and Metal Gear Rising were all really unique titles. But the others, while good or great in their own right, are more of the same with a twist added into it or just a well designed collection of previous ideas. I haven't been 'wowed' by any of their games since MGR:R way back when. Man my heart jumped when that MGR:R trailer hit and I saw the P* logo. 

I never touched Darksiders 2 btw, but seeing that video and reading your comments: I'm glad I didn't. I liked the first but the art-style never hit home with me (I know him from comics too, but he never connected with me there either).

Back to the genre talk: I agree "action" is a good term. It doesn't cover it all but "deep and nuanced game in which combat is a form of gameplay" is a bit too long for my taste. And the abbreviation of DANGIWCIAFOG is too long too. I mean what does that even mean... hahahaha! It is the one I generally use anyway and most of the players associate themselves with (though sometimes incorrectly). 

I'm going to link this topic to Brown later-on, see what he thinks.

Thanks for bringing this topic up man, good discussion came from it! :)


Notably fighting games have changed over the years also, adopting unconventional fighters such as for honor, smash bros, arms. windjammers and lethal league.

True story. Though they - the FGC - are still very unaccepting in that regard I feel. Melee is still hated by the vast majority as a 'joke fighting game', Arms barely has a following (but sold more than SFV already which is strange) etc. I really want to try For Honor one day but the plethora of DLC is holding me off. That and...I just don't have the time anymore to dive deep into mechanics for multiplayer games. When I get home from work I want to play a game, not look at a 'looking for a match' screen; of which especially SFV is guilty (god I love and hate that game).
What's your favorite fighting game? Or style of game?



Last edited by Royta/Raeng on Wed Aug 02, 2017 12:57 pm; edited 3 times in total (Reason for editing : Styling of post)

View user profile http://forum.stingermagazine.com

View previous topic View next topic Back to top  Message [Page 1 of 2]

Go to page : 1, 2  Next

Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum