I’m calling out a small minority of players here
I’m writing about Mass Effects multiplayer (and multiplayer in general) after releasing this video yesterday. And yes, while single-player zealots may be very loud and whiney, they are a small sect of gaming fans. Do not be fooled by their constant complaining, how at every news article written they repost their same tired arguments of why multiplayer is bad in games. I feel bad because they don’t realize that what they are complaining about is something even deeper.
I also think Single Player Is The Most Important Part Of A Game, That Doesn’t Mean It’s The Only Part Of A Game
You see, I myself once said “Online? Who’d want to play that?” when my brother got a first gen xbox 360. Then I tried it. That was ten years ago and I’ve never looked back.
Here’s the thing you have to remember about these anti arguments. They think that:
- Multiplayer takes away from Single Player experience.
- If not for Multiplayer, Single Player would be in the golden age it should be in.
- Development of Multiplayer takes resources from Single Player development.
Multiplayer Didn’t Kill The Single-Player Star
Let’s start with the first point which is the hardest for me only because…what, seriously?
It makes absolutely no sense to me. A game can have single player but no multi? In general it is always better to have options. Financially, economically, in everyday life so why not here? Instead of “Go play multiplayer games” it should be, “Just stick to the single player then.”
No one is making you play the multiplayer that comes with a game. It’s that simple. You can join PC Master Race, Vegan, and Crossfit on the 7th level of shut the hell up.
Multiplayer Isn’t Ruining Game Development, Game Development “Ruins Itself”
The next two really go hand in hand. I hear you disagreeing with my last point because of your misconceptions on these other points. Multiplayer isn’t killing anything off, and it’s not taking away something vitally needed for other aspects of the game.
Sometimes like in the case of Assassin’s Creed Multiplayer, it was outsourced to another company to do. The teams of artists and programmers making the single player is largely intact and uninhibited by this process.
You all think like a consumer, not a company. You say, “If they cut out the multiplayer, then they have that much more resources and money to put into single player!” The actual game company says, “If we cut the multiplayer, we can save that money and lay off those extra workers.”
Games Are Made By A Company, And A Company Is Designed To Make Money
Which is really what a lot of you forget all the time. There isn’t a golden age of gaming because gaming in general has always reached for that golden age, the next gen graphics, the polygon counts, the whatever else we are told every E3 about how amazing every game is going to be, but they always fall a tad short.
It’s how the industry runs and it’s exactly how everyone, including you the consumer, wants it. You don’t want to be sold something that looks ok at best. It’s suppose to look Triple A, whatever that means. People in general put too much emphasis on one aspect of gaming, the looks. It’s the first thing you see, your first impression of a game. Do you remember the Watch Dogs? Holy crap that E3 demo. But in the end it was an average game. The games that are great fun but not Triple A realism end up on steam or Live Arcade. Games like Monaco: What’s Yours is Mine and Dust: An Elysian Tail.
Multiplayer Is A Scapegoat For Lackluster Single Player Development
This is what those complaining are doing without realizing it: they are arguing the same side of the coin just from a different angle. We are all saying that we want better games in our own way. We don’t get them because games now do just enough to keep people playing them.
Multiplayer isn’t killing single-player gaming experiences games, it is the yearly releases mandated by management come hell or high water. The problem is the cycle itself mandating the content. We get half-assed stories that have been cut because of time. We get bugs and glitches that sometimes are game-breaking. We get 10 different versions of collectables that may or may not have anything to do with the game lore or mechanics. And we get multiplayer that feels tacked on.
And this works on people in general because of how we are hard wired. That’s why we go, “This isn’t that fun” but we keep playing it anyhow.
This Is Where The Stigma Of Multiplayer Being Bad Comes From
It only takes a few companies doing this to ruin it for everyone. That’s why when a company goes out of it’s way and makes a GOOD multiplayer I stand by it.
Like Mass Effect 3.
Just watch the video I posted above. Three friends shooting things, talking and having fun with it. It’s always like that and it came out over 3 years ago. (Left 4 Dead 2, released 2009 and even as it falls apart we keep playing it because it is just pure multiplayer fun.) I enjoyed getting up on a Saturday to see what the weekly ME3 event was, I was like a kid again getting up for Saturday morning cartoons.
I can tell you that, for me personally, without the multiplayer I would have put this game down long ago. I personally don’t have the want or will to play the single player of a game a bunch of times.
Gaming, Like Life, Is What You Make Of It.
If you can go online to complain about multiplayer destroying your games, then you can go online and make some online friends to play a game with. If you want to stay a shut in and never play a game with other people, that’s fine.
Just don’t go online to multiple multi-person interactive forums and interact with multiple people to complain about interacting with multiple people.
You’ll be amazed at how much fun you can have with a game if you just let yourself do so.