• Guest, The rules for the P & N subforum have been updated to prohibit "ad hominem" or personal attacks against other posters. See the full details in the post "Politics and News Rules & Guidelines."

Is Single player gaming over?

thespyder

Golden Member
Aug 31, 2006
1,979
0
0
I have seen that EA is stating that it is. And there seem to be a whole lot of Multi-player only games coming out lately.

I am going to take a stand in that it is most definitely NOT over. For me, single player games provide so much that multi-player games can't. For one, single player games provide some level of completion. When I finish out a area or a level or kill off a boss, they don't automatically respawn ten minutes later so that the next yob can come in and kill it.

Another thing that single player provides that I have not seen in any degree with Multi-player games is significant and expansive story telling. I always see MMO games express story arcs and progression, but really??? How much of that is there? I am not saying none, but if you compare the story for BG or DA:O or KOTOR to the story lines in WoW or SW:ToR, there is no comparison. Even Diablo 3, you could wrap up the entire plot and story, including all cut scenes, in 5 minutes of video. Beyond that it is all Rinse, lather, repeat ad-nausium.

Finally, my gaming schedule is not consistent. I am never able to plan my time online to any degree where I can meet up with the same group of people. Now, admittedly, my interest is in RPG more than FPS, so there is a HUGE difference in the online styles. So any type of Role Playing ends up being with an ever revolving group of total strangers. There is no real relationship development in that. No story advancement there. And very little likelihood of there ever being any.

Sure, I play Star Craft, but again, I have no time to hone my skills to be competitive. And then if I don't have single player, I simply won't play because it isn't fun for me to have endless rounds of getting owned by someone who has more free time than I. Computer AI may not be great. But since I am playing for the fun of it, it doesn't have to be Blu. It just has to entertain and challenge someone of my skill set. Which it does.

So, what do you guys think?
 

Zenoth

Diamond Member
Jan 29, 2005
5,082
104
106
It's not over, but it's declining and less popular than it used to be.

The gamers themselves I'm sure still wouldn't mind single-player games at all, but there's not much of actual large scale demand for that specifically. When single-player games are made and happen to be good (which is another story altogether) then we're certainly happy I guess for the most part, but do we actually demand single-player only games? I don't think we do (in a large enough number to make a difference). The developers go fishing where the fish bites, usually they know that if there's at least a minimum amount of multi-player content "along with" the rest (being single-player) then it should sell better. And as far as the consumers go if they keep buying multi-player games non-stop then of course you have to expect the developers to follow suit, call it a vicious cycle perhaps but it's just as natural and normal to develop a multi-player based game today as it was years ago to develop a single-player game on previous generation consoles and on the PC as well.

And, let's face it, most so called "single-player" games today and of recent past years as well in majority still have on-line aspects or components, be it Achievements being posted on leader boards (or scores posted there for comparisons against other players) or your character's in-game progression (usually by choice from in-game options) such as the character profiles giving some details on your characters in Dragon Age: Origins or for the Mass Effect games (BioWare Social Network profiles of in-game characters). Now of course when it's optional it shouldn't be a big deal, but the point is that regardless of your choice in such "single-player" games, the on-line components in them still exist, they're there and the developers had the intention to "connect" the game to the Internet in some way, shape or form. And you always have to tell yourself that as an individual even if you don't "care" about such extra optional on-line components that many others use them anyway. I do not think that there's going to be an increasing number of "pure" off-line games as they used to be, and on the contrary they keep going down, it's a definitive decline in actual number of such releases but in popularity too.

On individual basis I or you (OP) or anyone else on these boards could come here and explain how not of a decline it is for single-player games, with self-satisfactory reasons, but nevertheless the bigger picture is inevitable and we as the few minority cannot do anything about it. The games that sell more, or have the potential to sell more than single-player games are multi-player games, it's that simple, it's a question of money. If we gamers were to stand up and "ask", or "demand", or bitch about it or cry about it (call it what you want) as a majority and at the same time would literally stop buying games which are mostly multi-player based, then maybe, just maybe it would make a difference in some influential developers and publishers and shareholders' pockets and something would change. But we all know that something like that won't happen.

Now with all this said, as far as I am concerned, do I "prefer" single-player games? No, I don't. Do I prefer multi-player games? No, I don't either. What I want are good games. The one thing that can piss me off, obviously, is excessive DRM, but excessive DRM regardless of the game being multi-player or single-player. If I were to buy... say... The Elder Scrolls VI (I know, won't happen but just saying as an example) and that it would require always on-line to access and play it, then I would be pissed off. But if I were to buy Elder Scrolls VI and found out "later on" (should known from previews anyway) that it has some on-line components or even... an actual multi-player mode... then I just wouldn't care, because I would play the single-player part of it (as I said, this is just an example, I am aware of Elder Scrolls Online don't worry).

In other words, the golden age of real single-player games is pretty much gone in my book, and multi-player games (or single-player games with on-line aspects) have been on the rise for years already. I would go as far as saying that for the consoles it started with the Sega Dreamcast, and on the PC it started with Steam. I'm not saying that there's only multi-player games on Steam, and I'm not saying that Steam cannot go in off-line mode (excluding bugs), but what I'm saying is that Steam over the years (not immediately when it started) certainly contributed to the positive perception of on-line gaming and popularity of it in general in the eyes of the developers and publishers. At the moment however, single-player games are not "gone" for good and forever, they still do happen from time to time, and usually we're happy when it happens, of course when it just so happens that the game is good. But, to me, a single-player game is not synonymous of "good" game, it only means it's single-player... and the same goes with multi-player.

I will repeat myself again, what I want is not a single-player game nor a multi-player game specifically, what I want are good quality games that aren't released only six or seven months after initial development began.
 
Last edited:

Slammy1

Platinum Member
Apr 8, 2003
2,112
0
0
THe problem is most PC games are console ports on some level, if you want to play a PC exclusive game that takes advantage of the PC's strengths (not necessarily graphics but huge storage, for example, compared to a console) you're stuck with MMOs.

I cannot stand console ports myself, which is why I do not game like I used to.
 

shortylickens

No Lifer
Jul 15, 2003
79,546
12,362
126
For EA, probably. For the rest of the industry, no.

I know people complained about SC2's campaign but I thought it was alright. And they are committed making 2 more campaigns.

And Bethesda may be putting out an MMO, but they wont be ignoring the SP.
 

Bateluer

Lifer
Jun 23, 2001
27,730
7
0
No, it is not. Any publisher who completely ignores all single player titles will quickly find themselves missing a massive chunk of the market.

People are hankering for good single player games, not 6 half assed multiplayer shooters every year.
 

thespyder

Golden Member
Aug 31, 2006
1,979
0
0
I didn't read the rest of your post, but since when did anyone take any statement by EA seriously?
I take it seriously because they are Big names in the industry and respected (Ok, FEARED) by other companies. Plus their habit of eating up the littler companies means that they tend to be one of the majority players in deciding which way the industry goes. Not that I like them or their stance. but to ignore them merely on dislike seems a little short sighted.

@Zenoth,

I see your point of view. I would however say not that the gamers have moved towards more multi-player, but that the industry has widened to encompass the Facebook type crowd. And they in their droves and masses only want something simple and light. And yes, they bring their money with them, so companies absolutely follow the money. More's the shame on that.

I do share your belief that "Good" trumps Single vs Multi. However, for the reasons I listed above (and more) I think that Single player offers a lot more opportunity for good than does Multi. Basically, Multi-player tends to be shallow and superficial.

Again, I would point to the travesty that is Diablo 3 in what they did to make it always on and all but Multi-player only.
 
Last edited:

wuliheron

Diamond Member
Feb 8, 2011
3,536
0
0
The minute EA has something intelligent to say about gaming I'll swear off games forever.
 

gorcorps

aka Brandon
Jul 18, 2004
30,702
426
126
Nope. Even in games where multiplayer is encouraged like Borderlands and Torchlight, it's still playable and fun alone. There's even completely SP games like Skyrim, Sleeping Dogs, Batman, Assassin's Creed, and others. And of course the indie games are getting popular and have a lot of good SP options.
 

Generator

Senior member
Mar 4, 2005
793
0
0
What makes you worry that this could be true is that 2D games just went away just for the sake of 3D with horrid graphics. Who was sick of 2D games? Yet even Castlevania bent over backwards in making 3D games which were awful.

Multiplayers games have a good hook, keep you playing. But they still haven't found a way to implement that single player polish. Its just hamburger hill co-op.
 

ImpulsE69

Lifer
Jan 8, 2010
14,793
825
126
I have to admit..single player games don't keep me as interested these days as multiplayer games..

...but on the other hand EA tries to act like they know something all the time.

Look at all the indie games / kickstarter games that are coming out. Very few are multiplayer.

What EA really means is:

We can't milk the playerbase out of enough cash on single player games, and people bitch about online only DRM for single player games, so we're just going to make multiplayer games that require people to play online using microtransactions, oh and STEAM CHEAPENS IP's!
 

dighn

Lifer
Aug 12, 2001
22,820
4
81
screw EA. the only reason I buy any games from them at all is because they tend to buy up good studios who continue to churn out some good games before they too are tainted.
 

mmntech

Lifer
Sep 20, 2007
17,504
12
0
I'm a more introverted person, so I relax best alone or in small groups. Which is why I like single player games. I guess the big devs like multiplayer because it's easier to monetize through subscriptions and micro transactions.
 
Aug 11, 2008
10,451
641
126
I'm a more introverted person, so I relax best alone or in small groups. Which is why I like single player games. I guess the big devs like multiplayer because it's easier to monetize through subscriptions and micro transactions.
Exactly my situation. I play games to get away from the frustrations of the day and do something on my own schedule, with the difficulty I select, that does not depend on anyone else, and that has a feeling of accomplishment of finishing a good story. Single player for me all the way.

I am afraid good SP games are becoming very rare though.
 

HeXen

Diamond Member
Dec 13, 2009
7,819
32
91
I'm a more introverted person, so I relax best alone or in small groups. Which is why I like single player games. I guess the big devs like multiplayer because it's easier to monetize through subscriptions and micro transactions.
ditto
Idealy, MP games where everyone used a mic and played as intended then it would be awesome. But sadly i find MP aggrevating at best.
 

stahlhart

Super Moderator Graphics Cards
Dec 21, 2010
4,266
70
91
I've got enough of a backlog of titles I haven't gotten around to yet to last the rest of my life, or until I otherwise lose interest in it all -- what is or isn't published going forward doesn't really concern me, and I simply don't have the time to make multiplayer a worthwhile pursuit.
 

gorcorps

aka Brandon
Jul 18, 2004
30,702
426
126
I'm a more introverted person, so I relax best alone or in small groups. Which is why I like single player games. I guess the big devs like multiplayer because it's easier to monetize through subscriptions and micro transactions.
And less cost on story writers and voice actors overall I'd assume. MP focused games are usually pretty shallow in comparison.
 

shortylickens

No Lifer
Jul 15, 2003
79,546
12,362
126
And less cost on story writers and voice actors overall I'd assume. MP focused games are usually pretty shallow in comparison.
Yup, especially with regards to AI. In fact thats the only real complaint I have against the multiplayer industry is that across all platforms and game types and every developer, AI programming has suffered drastically. Only a handful of TBS class-style games like Galactic Civilization 2 have bothered to put forth a meaningful challenge.
 

thespyder

Golden Member
Aug 31, 2006
1,979
0
0
I guess this all kind of started when I got sick and disgusted with playing on the NWN2 PW (again) so I fired up ToEE. I am LOVING it (Again).

I try not to be introverted, but I do see that about myself. And I do enjoy social elements of multi-player games. But honestly, if single player games go away I can guarantee that my gaming budget will drop SIGNIFICANTLY.
 

Skott

Diamond Member
Oct 4, 2005
5,730
1
76
Is Single player gaming over? No


To me this question is pretty much like asking if pc gaming is dead.
 

EDUSAN

Golden Member
Apr 4, 2012
1,358
0
0
the problem with single player games is that they cost the same as multiplayer games, BUT they dont make as much money, im sure.

online games with microtransactions or monthly fees, may not make a lot of money fast, but if they hook someone playing it, they will for 1 year AT LEAST. What single player game do you play non-stop for 1 year? skyrim maybe... but most games take 2years to develop, take 10 hours to finish. Lets say 10 more hours if you wanna replay it/do achievements and then never touch it anymore

it may give you a better experience, more memorable moments, but in the end, you only played it 20 hs.... instead of 20hs per week in an online game

then of course, having MP games have its risks, like no one playing it...
 

ASK THE COMMUNITY