Unreal Tournament 2004 is one of my favorite games. However, this is not what I wish to discuss.
I was in Austin when UT 2k4 came out. It sold out all over immediately. I had to make a quick dash to a mega Frys and get their last copy. The reason why it sold out was because it was so content packed. UT2k4 did something genius.
At one point, Epic was under the pressure to make the Unreal Tournament series into a type of yearly release like a sports game. Unreal Tournament 2003 and then followed by a Unreal Tournament 2004, 2005, 2006, you get the picture. Unreal Tournament 2003 was a disappointment to many gamers. Many fixes were made for UT2K4. However, the genius part was including all the content of UT2K3 into UT2K4. Unreal Tournament 2004 was jam packed. It is so much fun to load up a game and have so much to do. No wonder the game sold out when it was released.
What I do not understand about modern game companies is why they keep throwing content away. If UT2K4 didn’t use UT2K3′s content, it was have been a much weaker content proposition. Absorbing previous games’ content works.
“What do you mean absorbing previous games’ content?”
I mean including that game experience into the new game.
“I need examples.”
Above: Why 2d Mario is the most fun
Super Mario Brothers 3 ingeniously absorbed Mario Brothers into a ‘battle mode’ experience. Some nights, a friend and myself would not even make it to 1-1 because we’d be battling each other all the time. (Tip: For a spirited Super Mario Brothers 3 adventure, do not use whistles and constantly compete over whose turn it is with battle mode. It will be the most fun you’ll have in a video game.)
I was very disappointed when Super Mario World lacked this feature as well as NSMB Wii. It should be in every Mario game. It should also be possible to be played in single player mode as well. It cannot be that hard to put Mario Brothers with 2d Mario games. All the assets are there. The physics are the same. All that must be done is some basic programming of the waves.
Above: Ignore this rambling guy. This video is just to show off the retro tracks.
Mario Kart DS (which tried to get back to the gameplay of SNES Super Mario Kart) ingeniously includes ‘retro tracks’. This helps beef up the content of the Mario Kart games. But there is a problem with it.
Instead of including old content with the new (like UT2K3 being rolled into UT2k4), Nintendo remakes a certain selection of the maps. This is stupid because the maps lose their gameplay. In Mario Kart Wii, since twelve players can play online, the retro tracks are much larger in order to incorporate this. It would have been more interesting to see twelve people bouncing off each other on the original tracks.
They have the right idea with the Retro tracks but the wrong implementation. “But they must be remade for today’s 3d graphics.” OK. But that is a face lift. Here, they are actually changing the track. And why are old power-ups removed? Why not leave the feather in? Instead of power-ups being game based, why not have them be level based? Some tracks have the feather. Some do not.
I don’t see why Mario Kart can’t keep adding tracks. Why not include ALL the retro tracks?
Oh God. DLC in Mario Kart U is going to be a bitch. Think I’ll pass on buying Mario Kart U because it is going to be DLC extreme.
You know one of the advantages WoW has? When it adds an expansion, it doesn’t remove previous content. It just adds. So the value of the game skyrockets tremendously if the player becomes interested in doing previous expansion content. If you missed Burning Crusade or Wrath of the Lich King, WoW will hold a tremendous amount of content for you.
With Smash Brothers, people want all the old content and more. Why cut anything? There was no reason why any of the Wii Sports sports should have been cut from Wii Sports Resort even if they could only be done without the Motion Plus. Now we have Motion Plus built into the controller so we are stuck swapping discs if we want to play Tennis. How stupid. In the Iwata Asks, they said they did this intentionally to give Wii Sports value. What a dumb idea. All you are doing is forcing us to switch discs. Did they honestly think people would buy BOTH Wii Sports and Wii Sports Resort just for that!?
Anyway, let us remember the amazing game of Unreal Tournament 2004. Let us remember to include as much content as possible. If you wish to prosper, let your customer prosper.
Above: What was so amazing was that the bots knew how to move. This game was very satisfying playing in single player which was somewhat rare in FPS games.