Thursday, 30 June 2016

Overly Long Games

Right now I'm playing a game called Divine Divinity, you may be aware of the later entry in the series known as Divinity: Original Sin.  Despite the fucking terrible name for this game I'm enjoying it a lot but holy shit is this game LONG.

I've been playing it on and off for what must be a few months at this point and there's just so much to do that it doesn't seem like it's going to ever end.  Every time I find a new town or even as I'm just walking around the world I end up running into about a million side quests.  Of course I want to do them because I'll get rewards and maybe a level or two during the process.  Even if I just progressed with the main story it's so meaty that I still have a good handful of hours left on it, not something I'd be able to do in a single lazy weekend.  Divine Divinity is the one I'm playing right now but other games with insane length come to mind such as The Witcher or Skies of Arcadia.  Both are great games but the length can be a little off putting sometimes, for those titles in particular it's the barrier to a replay.

Some of you may be scratching your head and wondering what I'm complaining about.  We live in an age where a game will cost you like £40, $60 or 7000-odd Yen, so of course we want more money to content ratio right?  Well yeah, you are right about that but there are games that can go on a bit too long.  Take a game like Nier for example.

Nier isn't a short game by any stretch but the difference between this and Divine Divinity is that I didn't have to put it down for a week or so at a time for a break because I was burning out.  I got a good number of fairly lengthy sessions and then it ended which is cool, I feel like I got my value for money.  Divine Divinity on the other hand, despite being an enjoyable title, has me playing a number of lengthy sessions and then burning out with no end in sight.  It sits in my backlog like your fat uncle at Christmas after eating one too many mince pies and wracks me with guilt for not finishing it.  I'm not going to drop it but at this point I do have to work up a fair bit of motivation to progress with it.  When I do work it up it's really fun but eventually I have another one too many sessions with no ending and drop it for another week or so.

Maybe this is a problem exclusive to me and people like me who have backlogs big enough that you could fill the Grand Canyon with it.  You're average person who doesn't buy 50 games at a time probably revels in the idea of a game taking hundreds of hours.  Younger players may also not have this issue because they have more time to play while adult life has all it's shitty jobs and other responsibilities, so suddenly an 80+ hour game feels a bit insurmountable.

None of the games I mentioned in this post are bad, just long as hell and make my backlog feel a little bit impossible.

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