1. We have added a Gift Upgrades feature that allows you to gift an account upgrade to another member, just in time for the holiday season. You can see the gift option when going to the Account Upgrades screen, or on any user profile screen.
    Dismiss Notice

Interview with Firaxis' Dennis Shirk!

Discussion in 'Civ5 - General Discussions' started by Shanghai Six, Oct 19, 2010.

  1. Clement

    Clement Layman

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2010
    Messages:
    732

    I must have misunderstood the metaphor, i took slower service and more crowding to represent the game's unfinished and buggy state, my disatisfaction extends to the design of the product itself which is why i mentioned the quality of the coffee.
     
  2. zonk

    zonk Prince

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2005
    Messages:
    572
    As we discussed in a different thread - but on this same topic (and I don't think you responded) -

    It's not about "argue all day about things you liked in civ4 that didn't get carried over to Civ5". As I specifically said -- drop religion, that's fine - but replace it with something to do. Drop espionage - that's fine, but give me something else to do.

    It doesn't help move the discussion forward to keep falling back on the same old "you just want IV features" -- I wouldn't mind if it were IV features that were filling the Next Turn wastelands, but I ultimately don't care....

    Introduce facial hair as a civilization concept. Add language as a diplomatic modifier. Make philosophy more than just a tech, but something to use, manipulate, modify, etc.

    I wish you'd quit trying to pigeonhole my arguments as such -- completely heeding the moderator's post --

    I and others have tried to explain this complaint in a myriad of ways... I don't know how else to make it clear without resorting to using features from IV as an example.
     
  3. Thormodr

    Thormodr Servant of Civ Supporter

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2005
    Messages:
    4,886
    Location:
    Vancouver, Canada
    Yep. If they made an incredible Civ that was by all accounts much better than cIV and very deep, complex, immersive and yet very fun to play I'd certainly pay $100 to $200 for it.

    In a way I guess I can see that Firaxis would want to avoid the backlash from raising prices. However, if they polled hardcore Civ fans I don't doubt that a lot of them would be very understanding if they truly got a superior product.
     
  4. lschnarch

    lschnarch Emperor

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2010
    Messages:
    1,296
    One of the things which always make me laugh is the position of the defenders about the current state of the game.

    "Yes, it was good that they cut X and Y and Z and G and .... because so it is more 'accessible'... "
    "Oh, it is good the way it is now and it will get even better when they add X and Y and Z and G and..."

    Sorry guys, but please either defend the way in which the game is NOW, or agree that there are things missing.
    And especially keep in mind that an "accessible" game will get less "accessible" if new stuff is added.
     
  5. Biz_

    Biz_ Prince

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2010
    Messages:
    482
    only someone who doesn't know how to play civ4 would call BTS balanced or perfect

    even patched vanilla was way more balanced (relatively)
     
  6. hardcore_gamer

    hardcore_gamer King

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2009
    Messages:
    672
    This.

    The people still defending the game are grasping for their last straws.

    Note that I don't actually hate the game and never have, but that doesn't mean I am desperate to defend every shortcoming the game is suffering from in an attempt to tell myself that the game is just as awesome as I always wanted it to be.
     
  7. zonk

    zonk Prince

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2005
    Messages:
    572
    Or - sell two editions, but don't make the "deluxe" just game+DVD+figurines....

    Make the deluxe for the hardcore, make the "not deluxe" for those that need... the accessibility.

    As the interview noted, it sounds like there are a lot of legacy mechanics that remain in the code -- OK -- so offer them as part of a deluxe edition. I guess I can wait a few months for the core to made available and a few more months for modders to provide them for free.... but since this is all about money, here's a heads up, Firaxis -- I WOULD most certainly send you $30 or whatever if you gave me upon release what a modder will eventually provide for free.

    I mean -- if we're going to just make it about economics - the game of golf seems to do OK, even though you can certainly buy a set of entry level/beginner clubs at a much lower price that a premium set.... Heck, they'd probably even get some would-be warriors that would spring for the premium set just because it's there.
     
  8. Rince

    Rince King

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2002
    Messages:
    673
    Location:
    In your city, poisoning your water!
    The people still bashing the game are grasping for their last straws.

    Note that I don't actually love the game and never have, but that doesn't mean I am desperate to bash every shortcoming the game is suffering from in an attempt to tell myself that the game is just as awful as I always wanted it to be.


    There, fixed that for you. Couldn't have put it in better words, thanks!
     
  9. eviltypeguy

    eviltypeguy Warlord

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2010
    Messages:
    234
    No, the paraphrased text said it was considered "near perfect" by fans. There's a big difference there, although subtle.
     
  10. eviltypeguy

    eviltypeguy Warlord

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2010
    Messages:
    234
    Sorry, but "dumbed down" is a negatively-biased way of inaccurately describing the streamlining of a product. If that's what you want to consider it, you're welcome to that opinion. Every iteration of the Civilization series has added or removed different bits; as is true for most products.

    Ultimately, commercial game titles are defined by their success, and their success is driven by what their target audience wants to consume.

    Despite having played Civilization since the original, I actually greatly appreciate the streamlining of Civilization that was done in V.

    I believe the root of most issues people have with the game are really down to AI and other problem areas, but those are boring to talk about, so it's much easier to try to say "they removed espionage, so Civ V == dumbed down".

    Keep in mind that the audience for games is now much larger than it was during the "golden age" of pc gaming during the 80s-90s. That's (rightfully, and thankfully) causing developers to rethink their approach to games and I'm grateful for it.
     
  11. ShuShu62

    ShuShu62 Warlord

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2010
    Messages:
    183
    Senility sucks, I swear I relied on Spies heavily in cIv and cIIv before cIV invented that totally cool new feature.

    Listen to Mahler's last Symphony, then listen to the Koyaanosqaatsi from Phillip Glass and explain dumbed down to me again. The post Romantics became so ornate and so protracted that classical music evolved/rebelled to minimilaism.

    I find the early minimallists to be quite jarring because they had play balance issues (errr... dissonance needed to be nerfed), but quite like the minimilist expansion packs considerably. I love Mahler's latest works too, but I would hate to think we could only listen to ring cycles (Wagner) that last for months, because milnimalism was just dumbed down music.
     
  12. zonk

    zonk Prince

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2005
    Messages:
    572
    Sigh.

    NO. I really don't know how else to say it -- people bring up features from IV because there's simply no other way to explain the concept of "Next Turn Wastelands" -- and for the nonwarmonger -- Civ V has a lot of that.

    To the casual gamer, perhaps that's not the case... perhaps - even though they're not really "doing" anything, they're mesmerized by baubles and eye candy. To a veteran Civ player - once you get a look at the eye candy, it ceases to matter much.

    To the casual gamer, maybe they're rechecking their tile usage every turn -- unless there's yet another bug I don't know about, V doesn't change your city focus, specialist allocation, or tile usage... so I don't need to do that every turn - only when a new population point hits.

    To the casual gamer, maybe they're poring over the tech tree each turn in anticipation of what to research in in 15 turns when they pop the next tech. Few hardcore players need to do that -- tech trees have been pretty much the same since II (and this one is the smallest, IIRC, since I).

    It's not "they took X out".

    It's "They took things that I used to do each turn, for example - X from a previous installment, and didn't replace it with anything.... and now -- all I do is either go to war to break the monotony, or, hit Next Turn yet again."
     
  13. zonk

    zonk Prince

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2005
    Messages:
    572
    You're right - I knew it as soon as I hit submit - spies were units in I/II... I suppose I could make the argument that they were units who had aspects of scouts and special ability war units (IIRC, their real use was buying enemy units, no?) not truly "espionage" in a real sense... but that would just be semantics.

    On the larger question, though -- I guess I would say my point still holds.... III DID remove spies... but III ADDED workers (separate from settlers), ADDED "leaders"/armies, etc.

    Again... my point is NOT "they took X out"... My point is "They took X out and gave me nothing else to do instead to replace the gameplay time X used to give me".
     
  14. eviltypeguy

    eviltypeguy Warlord

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2010
    Messages:
    234
    And if they did that, then the same complaint that many people make aobut SC2 just being an updated graphics version of SC1 would be made about Civ V.

    I get it, you don't like change, but don't try to twist words to vindicate yourself.
     
  15. Jediron

    Jediron Prince

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2006
    Messages:
    396
    I am stunned. And thinkinh, what were they smoking :crazyeye:

    What did he say ? They decided to let Religion out of CIV 5 because it was too "gamey" and also, that Religion and CS didn't match ? Oh well, that last part is true atleast. CS don't match with Religion. Infact, CS doesn't fit al all. CS is more gamey then Religion.

    So i ask again: what were they smoking ?
     
  16. hardcore_gamer

    hardcore_gamer King

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2009
    Messages:
    672
    Sure, don't try to counter anything I say. Just quote me and change the words.

    Your reply did nothing to prove anything I just said wrong. You just took what I said, and turned it into a cheap insult directed at me like some 12 year old who doesn't know what to say.
     
  17. zonk

    zonk Prince

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2005
    Messages:
    572
    You seem to be ignoring the point that I and others made --

    It's not about "not liking change" -- it's about if you take X out, what fills the turns in between wars... or worse -- what exactly is there to do if you particularly WANT to go to war besides click Next Turn a few thousand times and wait for the next pink science or blue science to pop.
     
  18. DuseCutter

    DuseCutter Chieftain

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2006
    Messages:
    98
    Location:
    NE Ohio
    Point taken.

    But is your difference basically saying the developer of the game didn't listen to the customer's opinion? If so, it would seem backwards to change what most of your customer's find "near perfect". (Yes, I'm using the paraphrased text because I can't listen to it at work and forget what that previous poster said he said exactly.)

    That said. I understand they are trying to appeal to a bigger market and that's a gamble that could either pay off with alienating just a small portion of the previous playerbase and drawing in many more new users. Or it could not appeal to either side and you go under.

    To borrow the coffee shop analogy and take it a step further. What happens a month after the owner expanded his business with the poor waitstaff and crowded dining areas and the coffee shop loses its allure and gains a reputation for being crowded and poorly staffed. What then for the coffee shop owner?

    I hope it works out for Firaxis, actually because it would be nice for them to make the revenue to be able to support both types of games. Hardcore and mainstream. ...oh no... I'm getting flashes of hardcore vs. casual arguments on the WoW forums. :crazyeye:

    (Just for the record, I'm firmly in the "this game is different but still fun and has potential crowd.")
     
  19. SuperJay

    SuperJay Bending Space and Time

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2010
    Messages:
    3,273
    Location:
    Shacklyn
    It's just semantics. Whether you call it "dumbed down" or "streamlined and organic," the game's producer himself states that they deliberately designed the game to appeal to a wider, more casual audience that first encountered Civilization through Civ Rev, and now wants something more but not Civ4-level complexity. Which makes sense from a financial standpoint; there's not much profit in catering to your long-time fans who have been playing your flagship game franchise since 1991. It's far, far more profitable to market a product to a consumer segment that is hitherto untapped.

    So: the casual gamer market segment is definitely more lucrative for Firaxis, so that's what they're going after with Civ5. Again, it's a fairly sound business plan. We have to remember that each of us is a number on an executive's spreadsheet; this isn't about emotions and caring and solidarity or anything foolish like that. Those values don't inflate profit margins and capture a viable market segment. As Consigliere Tom Hagen would say in The Godfather, "it's just business, nothing personal."

    Try and think of Civ 5 as a casual-friendly Civ-related game whose objective is to appeal to new players that started with CivRev. In that respect, it's a good move for Firaxis. In its current state, it doesn't appeal to the few of us that enjoyed the depth of the previous Civilization series, but we have to remember that Firaxis didn't design this game for us. They designed it for people who enjoyed Civ Rev and wanted something a little heavier, but not too complex. I can understand that; the previous (complicated) Civilization games weren't for everyone. ;)
     
  20. JLoZeppeli

    JLoZeppeli Prince

    Joined:
    May 11, 2009
    Messages:
    598
    So the song changed from "it's not dumbed down your are wrong stupidfan, it was the same in civ IV!" to the new " I love that it's streamlined and easier because i feel it more!"

    Better and faster than a change in civics, without any Anarchy i could say!:lol:
     

Share This Page