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Suzuki: “Game providers have to shift their focus” on visuals to creativity

Tuesday, 7 December 2010 19:31 GMT By Stephany Nunneley

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Industry legend Yu Suzuki has said the difference between game development today, and back when he was creating Virtua Fighter, boils down to developers focusing more on visuals than creativity.

Speaking in an interview with 1UP, Suzuki said it’s not just the developers who are to blame for focusing more on visuals, but the consumer as well.

“The problem [today] is that the industry focuses too much on the extravagance of the graphics,” he said. “Gorgeous graphics equal high quality, but it’s expensive to make those games. So it’s good that we are not being strapped down by hardware limitations, but games have rules. Shogi has its rules, Chess has chess rules, and soccer has soccer rules — you play with a team of 11 members and you can’t use your hands. And video games are games, as well. So there are rules. We should focus our creativity on making interesting rules in a game instead of focusing on the visuals.

“The game providers have to shift their focus. And the consumers have to also not look at only the graphics. The players are actually already beginning to realize this. You can see it in social-networking games. [But] user expectations are to blame, too. If given the option of 1,000 cars and 10 cars in a game, the user will most likely take the game with 1,000 cars.

“Games with fewer options can’t compete on the same level because the user will always choose the game with more cars.”

You can check out the first part of the interview through here, as part of the site’s Shenmue Week.

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14 Comments

  1. Hunam

    But most (not all, before people cry) japanese games look like ass these days. They neither look good, or are that creative.

    #1 4 years ago
  2. Crysis

    100% agree with the headline, i don’t mine playing a game that looks like it came from the PS2 ea if it’s worth playing.

    #2 4 years ago
  3. Erthazus

    @1 Metal Gear Solid 4 (amazing game) looks graphically to this date really good. When it came out it was fantastic.

    Finall Fantasy XIII (mediocracy) maybe level design was ASS, but over all graphics were really good.

    @Crysis,
    “100% agree with the headline, i don’t mine playing a game that looks like it came from the PS2 ea if it’s worth playing.”

    Stop playing Playstation 3 games then. Go play Wii. NSMBW or SMG 2 or MEtroid:Other M awaits you.

    My personal thought on that: Developers should provide great visuals for games that need that. I don’t care if RPG, Strategy, RTS have bad graphics, but FPS genre or action games MUST and always need a graphical upgrade. No matter what.

    #3 4 years ago
  4. theevilaires

    @2 BFBC2 multiplayer is a great example :D

    #4 4 years ago
  5. OrbitMonkey

    A game I hear getting some love is Dark Promenition (360), think its called Crimson Seeds on the Ps3. Twin Peaks style story, ps2 visuals, crap driving, but strangely compelling apparently.

    #5 4 years ago
  6. AHA-Lambda

    yep deadly premonition is good stuff :)

    #6 4 years ago
  7. Crysis

    @Erthazus, I’m not saying that i don’t like better visuals, that’s just stupid. I know you can’t undertsand this, but I’m saying that the gameplay comes first to me followed by the story then it’s the visuals, in other words, if a developer’s budget is tight, i’d rather them put more focus onto gameplay elements than smoothing out the graphics, what’s the point in playing a beautiful game that’s as dull as the colour grey.
    The wii doesn’t receive any high end multiplat game with the same gameplay features, it recieves a totally different game to suit the wiimote, & i have never liked a single Nintendo published home console game since Pokemon Stadium 2 & the original Super Smash Bros.

    #7 4 years ago
  8. Tallon 4

    Art, to me, is more important than visuals. I like Okami better than God of War 3.

    #8 4 years ago
  9. Big_Boss

    It’s absolutely true that the most memorable games are the ones that have interesting characters, dialogue, plot and setting or have very interesting and engaging “rules”. However, as the main purpose of games are to immerse the player into whatever world the game portrays, visuals are a key part of that, especially with the hardware available these days. A good game has a nice balance between the two. There are games you just play for nothing more than it being a game like COD. You play it to have fun and not much intellectual interaction occurs between the game and the player. On the other hand, games like Metal Gear Solid do engage the player in a much more in depth manner. I don’t see a problem with some games being more visually driven (like Crysis), sometimes to the point where that’s all you’re really getting out of the game. However I do think Suzuki is right in the sense that lately (since the beginning of this console generation), too many games are like that and developers aren’t really making an effort to create in depth novel-like games. I think they need to realize that visual excellence in itself may sell games but to create memorable games and franchises they need to do more. A storyline with interesting characters and complex interactions between them or just really original, creative “rules” as he says, are they key aspects of the best games. Such games in my view, are as good as games can be, they produce the best possible interaction with the player. What we perceive with our mind is far more pure and memorable than what can perceived with our eyes and ears. What we see is finite as technically speaking; we all see the same thing. When it comes to a complex, ambiguous storyline, there is room for speculation and interpretation. Some things are “set in stone” like names of the characters, what they do and say but the nature of the characters, their motivations, their thoughts can be interpreted differently. The fact that game developers can capitalize on visual representation alone, is a reflection on the consumers as it is easier to appreciate the visual presentation of a game and if the consumer isn’t looking for anything more than there is no incentive for the developer to implement anything more. Again just reiterating what Suzuki is saying but I think too many people do not understand this. Another, perhaps even more concerning reason why developers seem to shift the focus of their games to visuals, is the profit incentive. A new call of duty comes out every year, maybe even 2 starting next year. As a result, the publisher and developer make more money than a game that is in development for 5-6 years. Our society operates based on profit. It’s a simple fact pretty much everyone knows and it allows us to cooperate peacefully while still acquiring the things we need without having to resort to taking it by force. The downside of this is the objectivity, lack of spirit of you will. Whenever this profit incentive touches something it sucks the life out of it. I think we can all agree the one place this does not belong in is art. Art needs freedom, room to be creative and not be overly concerned with making a profit. If games were not art as some people claim, how come there is a problem when the corporate profit-incentive model is applied to video game development. Not to say that there is no room for it in game development; consumers can’t wait for a masterpiece game that will come out in 10+ years. Consequently I think it is safe to conclude that games are partially art. I’m not sure it would be appropriate to say that games have elements of art but more so that it is art but to a lesser extent than pure art. That doesn’t mean it’s not art at all but a very special kind of art. Again as I said in the beginning, a good game has a balance between the intellectual aspects and the aspects that are prone to sensory perception.

    Does anyone agree or disagree with opinions I have stated? I do wonder what other people think about this subject as there doesn’t seem to be much discourse about it.

    #9 4 years ago
  10. MegaGeek1

    I completely disagree with this headline. Maybe because Im a graphic whore videophile. But Im always looking for the best graphics available.

    Also, Better graphics/physics/AI = new and more exciting gameplay opportunities. PS2 basically changed the landscape for the GTA series and it had everything to do with the move to 3D and the graphical capabilities of that generations hardware.

    #10 4 years ago
  11. Dannybuoy

    What’s wrong with having our cake and eating it? Can’t we have better graphics and creativity? Creativity is great, but sloppy visuals and cut corners can shatter the illusion for me. I want to be wowed by cutting edge visuals with creative flair. I dont want games that look amazing but play badly and have repetitive gameplay. There needs to be a balance.

    #11 4 years ago
  12. Gekidami

    @9

    I dont think alot of people are willing to read a wall of text. Use paragraphs.

    #12 4 years ago
  13. OlderGamer

    @1 and 2 110% agree

    I am playing Phantasy Star Portable, blown up on a 19inch(with component cables, it looks like a PSone game – no lie. And couldn’t care less. However on the whole most of what comes out of JP these days seems to me to be hohum graphicly(at best) and lack a whole lot we haven’t already seen/played. That does alos tend to be a world wide problem too, being fair. We live in Sequel Mania these days.

    Also, not singling you out or the PS3(remember I own and play mine too), but Erth I think MGS4 was an example of what Yu Suzuki might have been talking about. Pretty to look at, but pretty much the same ole thing. IMO, anyways. I have been been smitten with MGS, well thats not true I loved the NES one ;)

    Oh and number 9,

    I remember when I first found this website a couple years back, I used to do the wall of text too. I honestly didn’t know you had to DOUBLE hit Enter/Return in order to have the paragraphs skip one line. Might wanna give it a go(as they say across the pond), makes you more readible, and after all isn’t that why you posted to begin with?

    #13 4 years ago
  14. Erthazus

    @OG, You are playing Phantasy Star Portable and blown by it because it is a PSP game and costed you not so much and it is RPG game. RPG game never need amazing graphics.

    But action/FPS games always need graphical improvement no matter what. Thats why people loved these games.
    FPs genre was defined by John Carmack days when they tried to make a revolution with graphics. Like Wolfenstein or Doom.

    + just think about Phantasy Star Portable if it costed you 60 bucks. Halt. Phantasy offers you for not much money good quality for your machine and you expect it for that price.

    #14 4 years ago

Comments are now closed on this article.

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    A short teaser for Star Wars: Battlefront has been posted by EA on Twitter. Well, that speeder isn't going anywhere. Can someone give us a lift to @SW_Celebration http://t.co/srEVrAA0zl #SWCA https://t.co/4W4LG8myke — EAStarWars (@EAStarWars) March 25, 2015 The teaser shows vehicles which we could be using in the game, but it mainly shows the snowy landscape […]

  • Pillars of Eternity releases today – get all the review scores here

    Pillars of Eternity, which still stands as the second most-funded video game on Kickstarter, finally releases today. It’s also getting some rather positive reviews scores, which we’ve rounded up for you. The isometric, party-based RPG from Obsidian Entertainment was one of the first video game projects to take to Kickstarter, and hit its $1.1 million […]

  • Take an in-depth look at Evolve’s Behemoth monster and four new hunters

    Evolve’s fourth monster, the Behemoth, as well as the four new hunters are shown off in new gameplay video. Evolve’s latest gameplay trailer gives everyone a good look at each of the four new hunters and the massive Behemoth monster. The hunters can be bought either separately or though the hunting pass, while the monster […]

  • PS4 firmware update 2.50 causing issues with Killzone: Shadow Fall

    The suspend/resume feature in PlayStation 4′s 2.50 firmware update is causing some issues with Killzone: Shadow Fall. Killzone: Shadow Fall developer Guerrilla has said that the game is experiencing some issues in some instance where the suspend/resume feature is used. The timing of when players put the game in suspend mode does have an effect, […]

  • Bungie on Destiny matchmaking: “We believe there’s no substitute for a pre-made team”

    Crazy though this may seem, it’s possible that Destiny shipped according to plan. History points to community as a crucial component, far from the contingency that many now suspect. Paul Davies spoke to Bungie for clarity. “The community always engineers the best solutions for bringing players together. While Matchmaking is a great resource for introducing […]

  • Bloodborne works with suspend/resume, but only offline

    PlayStation 4′s newly-added suspend/resume feature works with Bloodborne as you’d expect, but only while offline. PlayStation 4 received the long-awaited suspend/resume feature today as part of firmware 2.50, and people are starting to test it out with various games. Bloodborne does work with the feature, but only if you play offline. Playing online is arguably […]

  • This is what Crossy Road looks like in first-person

    Crossy Road is fun and addictive. But in first-person, it’s mostly frightening. YouTube user Andy Front Films likes Crossy Road so much he decided to show off what it would look like in first-person. If crossing roads quickly and watching around for cars and trains, all of this as the camera chases you felt intense […]

  • Take a small behind-the-scenes peek at Mass Effect 4

    BioWare cinematic director Ken Thain has given us a very slim look behind the scenes at some motion capture work from the upcoming Mass Effect game. The upcoming Mass Effect game, whether it ends up being called Mass Effect 4 or not, will most definitely incorporate some form of motion capture work. How do we […]

  • Borderlands: The Handsome Collection – 8GB day one patch on PS4, 16GB on Xbox One

    Day one patches for Borderlands: The Handsome Collection are pretty hefty. Both the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One versions of Borderlands: The Handsome Collection require players to download lots of gigabytes to make the experience as smooth as possible. The PlayStation 4 version has an 8.31GB day one patch. The Xbox One version however has […]

  • Get a PlayStation 4 with Bloodborne and The Last of Us for $435

    If you’ve been waiting for the perfect game to get to buy a PlayStation 4, there’s no better time than the present. Amazon is offering a good PlayStation 4 bundle at the moment. For $434.99, you get a PlayStation 4 console, The Last of Us, and Bloodborne. The Last of Us is of course the […]

  • Upcoming Battlefield Hardline patch to nerf the K10, buff battle rifles

    Battlefield Hardline’s first patch will focus on weapon balance and a few changes have been proposed. Battlefield Hardline lead multiplayer designer Thaddeus Sasser posted a few of the balance changes that the team is considering for the next patch. K10: reduce bullet damage to 33 Saiga and PTR: reduce recoil to bring more in line […]

  • Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 and a new Resident Evil game coming this year, according to research firm

    According to digital games analyst SuperData, a new Resident Evil game is due this fall and that this year’s Call of Duty is Black Ops 3. In its latest report on digital console games, research and analytics firm SuperData revealed that a new Resident Evil is coming this fall. “We anticipate this month’s downturn to […]

  • Bloodborne: you can add gestures to your messages

    As players get deeper into Bloodborne, they keep uncovering so many of its little new additions, including this one. Bloodborne, like all of the Souls games before it, allows players to leave messages for other players. These messages could be used to point players towards impending doom, treasure, or just be sarcastic and witty. What […]

  • PlayStation 4 firmware update 2.50 is now live

    PlayStation 4 firmware update version 2.50 has started rolling out. Reports are coming in saying that Yukimura, PlayStation 4′s firmware 2.50 has been made available to download. The update is clocking in at just 245mb, so get downloading. 2.50 brings with it many new additions, including the suspend/resume feature, backup and restore, accessibility options and […]

  • Harley Quinn DLC for Batman: Arkham Knight is a prequel

    Batman: Arkham Knight’s Harley Quinn pre-order DLC is set before the events of the main game, according to Amazon’s description. Today we learned a few details about the pre-order DLC for Batman: Arkham Knight, namely the Harley Quinn one. According to the description on Amazon, the DLC takes place in the lead-up to the events […]

  • Bloodborne Vicar Amelia summon mystery solved

    Bloodborne players unable to summon near Vicar Amelia: here’s your solution. Bloodborne’s secrets are unfolding by the hour as clever players piece together From Software’s cunning design. Yesterday we reported problems summoning in the Cathedral Ward, before the Vicar Amelia boss fight. It turns out this isn’t a bug – or if it is, it’s […]

  • Steven Spielberg will direct film adaption of Ready Player One

    Steven Spielberg will direct the film adaption of the sci-fi, virtual world, video game themed novel Ready Player One by Ernest Cline. Warner Bros. bought the rights to the film in June 2010 and hired screenwriter Zak Penn to rewrite the previous draft written by Eric Eason, according to Deadline. The book takes place in […]

  • Bloodborne players with PS4 headsets shouldn’t forget about the custom audio

    Here’s a friendly reminder for Bloodborne players with PS4 headsets: be sure to download the Headset Companion App from the PlayStation store if you haven’t already. As previously reported, the game supports a custom Bloodborne audio mode which can be uploaded. It contains custom audio created by developers specifically tuned to enhance the audio. This […]

  • EA explains why FIFA Ultimate Team transfer prices are now platform specific

    EA has posted a blog entry explaining its FIFA Ultimate Team transfer market price ranges which now include platform-specific pricing in order to best the coin sellers. EA said it has implemented the changes to FUT over the last several weeks because it should be “fair and fun for every player,” ultimately coming to the […]

  • Game of Thrones: Episode 3 – The Sword in the Darkness now available

    In case you forgot, Game of Thrones: Episode 3 – The Sword in the Darkness was released today. It is available on Mac, PC, PlayStation 3, PS4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One. The third episode releases on iOS devices and Android tomorrow, March 26. The Sword in the Darkness finds Asher Forrester heading to Mereen […]

  • Bloodborne players are already documenting their crazy antics

    Bloodborne has been available for almost two days now in North America, and already players are posting interesting clips and character customization choices for the game. Below are interesting takes on creating a character and videos of a frustrating death and another full of blood coming from a very painful place – monster or not. […]

  • FIFA Ultimate Team celebrates sixth year in existence with giveaways

    FIFA Ultimate Team is celebrating its sixth year in existence with special events running from today until March 29. According to EA, every FUT fan will be handed one free pack every day, and those who play at least one match in the FUT Birthday Cup will have a chance to win rare “tradable In-Forms” […]

  • Halo Online is a F2P PC game in development exclusively for Russia – video

    Halo Online is a free-to-play game which will launch this spring in Russia, and is in development with Saber Interactive. According the reveal event attended by IGN Russia, the game was designed to run well on lower-end PCs and runs on a modified Halo 3 engine. The game is set on a secret UNSC space […]

  • SteamWorld Dig Xbox One release expected in late May

    SteamWorld Dig is coming to Xbox One, developer Image & Form has announced. A firm release date hasn’t been announced, but the studio expects the title to arrive on the system in late May. “We’re preparing quite an elaborate Easter egg for the Xbox One version – a gaming thing that we really wanted to […]

  • SMITE celebrating first anniversary with a sale on skins, Ultimate God Pack

    Hi-Rez Studios is celebrating the first anniversary of SMITE with a sale. From today through Friday, March 27, the Ultimate God Pack, which includes all current and future Gods, will run you $19.99. Alll individual pre-launch skins are 50% off, and all Gem Packs will award bonus gems. In addition, from March 27-29, all SMITE […]

  • Borderlands 2 has sold around 12 million copies, says Gearbox

    Speaking with Microsoft’s Major Nelson in his podcast, Gearbox Software boss Randy Pitchford stated Borderlands 2 has sold somewhere around the 12 million mark. As of August 2014, it was announced by Take-Two in its financial report the 2012 game had sold-in 10 million units. Pitchford noted in the podcast he learned of the figures […]

  • Broken Age releasing on PS4 and Vita same day as Act 2 on PC

    Double Fine Productions has announced it will release Broken Age on the PlayStation Store next month. Act 2 will also be released on PC. The full Broken Age adventure will release on PlayStation 4 and Vita on April 28 in North America and April 29 in Europe. It features cross-buy and cross-save. Broken Age Act […]

  • Star Citizen earned another $1 million within two weeks – total hits $76 million

    Star Citizen continues its funding streak with backers pumping another $1 million into the game’s development in the last two weeks. The total earned for the space sim has now reached $76 million ($76,015,532 to be exact) with 851,395 backers contributing to the staggering figure. Star Citizen’s latest update was version 1.1 which included two […]

  • Final Fantasy Type-0 HD, Resident Evil Revelations 2 and Battlefield: Hardline top Media Create charts

    Final Fantasy Type-0 HD, Resident Evil Revelations 2 and Battlefield: Hardline were the big ticket debuts during the March 16-2 period in Japan, with each game claiming the top three slots on the Media Create charts, respectively. Final Fantasy Type-0 HD moved 92,094 on PlayStation 4, while Resident Evil Revelations 2 moved 73,373 units on […]

  • You can now learn English or Spanish on Xbox One with the Rosetta App

    Want to learn English or Spanish? Rosetta Stone has an App for that on Xbox One. According to the language teaching firm, Rosetta Stone’s Discover Languages, the new application teaches English and Spanish by way of immersive simulation. Users will virtually travel to learn vocabulary and grammar “necessary for real-world interactions.” Here’s how it works: […]

  • PayDay 2 and PayDay: The Heist have sold over 9 million units combined

    The PayDay franchise is a lucrative IP for Starbreeze and Overkill, as both games combined have sold over 9 million copies as of November 2014. The company has also sold over 8 million paid DLC packages since PayDay 2 was released in 2013 (via NeoGAF). In its Q2 half year report issued in February, net […]

  • Nintendo wants to “surprise” customers with NX, not expand upon existing hardware

    Nintendo president Satoru Iwata has firm wants to “surprise” players with its new NX system. Speaking in an interview with Nikkei, translated by Kotaku, Iwata wouldn’t go into details on the new system, but stated expanding on a current gaming system would be “dull.” “In the past few years, the idea of what [encompasses] a […]