Zombie games should stop being made.
Debate Rounds (4)
You have not defined what a "zombie game" would be. That could be DayZ just as much as "stupid zombies" from the app store. I will make a definition that would be defendable for myself:
Any game revolving around the dead returning to life without immediate side-effects.
That does not include "Last of Us" as these vary from your regular "living dead": it makes the game very original because they have new looks, new behavior and aren't really defined as such throughout the game.
Opponent has already said that mods would not be included in this debate.
Over to Con, who has to make his case now.
Anyway, let's start the arguments. So you have defined a zombie game as a game with the dead returning to life, without side effects. I think I might know what you mean, but please clarify that in your argument. I'm going to take it (based off of your Last of Us reference) to mean that they are just the dead, back to life. Nothing to do with mushrooms, or super powers, or whatever other strange thing you can come up with. So, and correct me if I'm wrong, but we're talking about Dead Rising zombies? Or, I suppose, Dead Island, or... Well, that's about all I can think of. Maybe DayZ.
I think they should not stop creating these sorts of games for the reason that they are an interesting "what if" scenario. Video games are oftentimes seen as time-wasters, but games like dead rising, if not totally realistic, have a lot of creative effort put into them (for instance, most of the weapons are possible to create, if over the edge). Even just playing them takes a lot skill, because you have to remember recipes (if applicable), strategies, and be very good at creative problem solving (okay, maybe DayZ isn't the new Portal, but it does cause you to have to do a lot of planning, along with off the wall reacting).
But that's just video games in general. Looking at zombie games, you almost have to be more creative, and have faster reactions, because of the sheer quantity of enemies. Therefor, zombie video games help you be more creative, which is a good trait to have in life, as it can transition over to a business environment (more or less. The trait carries over, if not the exact application. You most likely will not spend many business meetings planning how to set accounting on fire, or steal all of sales' gold).
Alright, go ahead.
It will be hard for me to find arguments though.
Another thing you should know is that most people on DDO like to use sources. I am completely against it as you can find pretty much everything you want to believe on the internet. In the end, it's logic that will win.
Don't bother with the time required searching for sources now though, I trust you'll only speak true words!
You have defined the zombies well: not like those in Last of Us, but like those in dead rising, dead island, and ofcourse those of resident evil as well (initially, they're just regular zombies..)
I. MY ARGUMENTS
1) They are not as good as they used to be.
A reason they should stop being made is simply because they don't scare us as much as they used to - which is obviously bad for the horror game genre. There is a serious quality dip even with titles that used to mean something. Resident Evil 4 once stood king of the zombie genre, while now almost nobody bothers buying the game anymore.
Another thing we should remark here is the huge dissapointments gamers get. Dead Island had a fantastic trailer, but people overestimated the genre again and the game was condemned by critics once they really got to play it. The "walking dead" game and "dead nation" are other examples of zombie games that proved to be just average and not worth your money.
In the end, zombie games will always be too repetetive. The zombie formula only works if they change it to a certain degree and end up with games like "Last Of Us". Dead rising is an exception to this, as this is meant to be funny rather than be an actual zombie-experience.
2) Zombies serve best as DLC
I'll name 2 famous examples: CoD zombies and DayZ (originally).
When DayZ became an actual game it wasn't that good. Surely it was a fun experience, but it clearly isn't finished yet and doesn't provide fun for long.
Imagine if CoD's succesful formula suddenly became a game on its own: would there really be much to it? The fact that it works in rounds on specific maps that are limited determines the succes of this game. They would not succeed if they tried to do it on a larger scale, and we all know zombies on CoD is mainly a multiplayer mode. It relies on CoD's existant community to function properly.
II. COUNTER TO OPPONENT'S CASE
Here's what I think his arguments are, I listed them and added a reply.
1) Interesting "what if"-scenario
As I said before, the scenario's are very repetetive. They will even return in movies, leaving very little scenario's with zombie creatures left. It takes some very good writers to still come up with a good storyline!
2) creative effort
Your example from dead rising seems strange. I don't see how anyone could create a giant bomb, or a lightsaber with everyday objects. There doesn't really seem to be a reason why you would want to make these objects either.
3) takes skill
You could really say this about most cames, planning strategies occur almost everywhere. A game creator will always make sure his game takes some skill to complete.
As for faster reactions, this happens in most games as well: they are created to be played while pressing buttons. All games, not just zombies, make the player polish his reaction skills.
On to Con.
While the zombie scenario may not be totally original, there are many stories that could be conjured up, and really rather easily. I do agree that the stereotypical "zombie outbreak" where it's just happened, and you're trying to escape some confined areas are overdone, and the "you are immune" bit seems to be in every game these days (except for the purposefully difficult "perma-death" games, like zombie-u). However, take, for instance, the walking dead. So far, we haven't run into a single immune character, and they literally skipped over the beginning, instead dropping our protagonist right into a post-outbreak story. And yet, all this time later, they are still coming up with stories. So obviously they could innovate better with the story telling, and I think we should at least give them the chance.
I don't think that my example is that weird. Obviously, you can't make a light saber (wish it though we gamers may). However, the big bomb is made of propane tanks. Many of the weapons in the game are simply creative combinations of oddly dangerous commonplace objects. Like, for instance, the Z.A.R. If you look at it, it's a bunch of guns held together with duct tape. And the sledge saw. It's a cement saw duct-taped to a sledgehammer. Both are possible to create in real life, even if there isn't really a reason to at this point in time.
I'll concede on this one. I realize that while there are more zombies to react to, they are weaker, basically equalizing the amount of skill it takes to dispatch a few. There's probably an equation for that. There are 47 zombies to every one Bowser.
I'll simply point out here the fact that Dead Rising 3 hit a million sales within a month. Even if that figure is exaggerated, (like you said, you can prove anything with a little time and the internet) that's still one whopping fish tale.
You said that they're not as good as they used to be. You held up Resident evil as an example. I'm afraid that that simply isn't true. I believe that the increase of zombie games (back when four was out, what other games were there? I can't find a single other triple-A zombie game from that year) has led to old series that are still getting bought (Resident Evil 6 made the most money of any game in the series yet), but ignored in mainstream press, because everyone is looking to the indie publishers these days. Pick up any given magazine of Game Informer, and half the articles will be on indie games (and rightly so, seeing as having a small group of people build a game is highly impressive in the face of companies like Ubisoft).
CoD zombies were in the original game, they weren't DLC. You're right there, though. Having an entire game based on it would be terrible. However, I have to disagree with your statement on DayZ. That's really more of an opinion. There are people who devote hours to playing this game (though I personally don't enjoy it, doesn't mean someone else doesn't), and dismissing a game because it's still early in the process is like sending back a meal they haven't put in the oven yet (but you asked for because, well... I don't know. You're in a hurry).
Pro agrees that the scenario has become quite repetetive. However, he uses "walking dead" as an example for games that vary from the original. I think he means "WD: survival instinct" here and not "the walking dead". "The walking dead" was incredibly boring and bad, not an example of a good zombie game overall. Also, he DOES witness the outbreak, so it can't be used as an example (you were probably referring to the series, right?).
And... Walking dead survival instinct..? well...zombie gamers don't really talkabout that:
You say we should give them another chance to come up with better scenario's, I say we have seen them fail for long enough. They should focus on making games like the last of us, instead of going for the same zombies we have already seen for too long. It will be easier to write a better scenario too, as none will have been invented for those particular creatures yet.
2) Creative effort
You kindof agreed here, saying that there isn't a reason to make those weapons. But then you said "at this point in time". Are you insinuating there will ever be a zombie outbreak? Such a thing would never look like it did in movies, and none of us gamers would be able to participate. But this hypothetical theory is useless.
Just because it's fun I'll get into it: Max Brooks has said in his "the zombie survival guide" that short katana's would be the best weapon for killing zombies. The average man can afford that weapon, so if you really want to get prepared, buy that and not dead rising.
3) Takes skill
4) They still sell
Yes, they do. All games are fun, and most gamers do love zombies. However, they get dissapointed most of the time. It sells because people feel like killing zombies, not for anything else. Killing zombies can be fun. But Dead Rising provides nothing more than that. It's almost a throwaway game. Only the more improved games like Last of Us can make record breaking sales, which is why the people making games should lean towards that instead of going for the classic zombie killing.
1) Not as good as they used to be.
I held up that sole example, but by this argument I mean that it is slowly going downhill the past 5 years in general. Resident evil 6 was an exception to this. It proved to get a great 7.9/10 by IGN:
But I believe the next generation of resident evil will not hold up to expectations.
Comparing the game to resident evil 4 though, it was once asked in a poll:
Although only about 300 people voted, RE4 got 2/3 of the votes.
2) serves best as extra content
Sorry for my mistake - it's not necessarily DLC, but simply an extra mode.
My point with DayZ was that its multiplayer mode will die out, and that process happens gradually.
First off, not all people who buy Arma will buy DayZ, but they made up for that by getting new zombie addicts to play their game. That made sure they had initial success. But the reason this game is fun is because of the encounters with other players. Playing this game alone would not be fun. Most of DayZ's players will quit at some point though, and in the end, the players that are left will have to quit too as there is a much smaller community. That is what the gamer always does: move on. Multiplayer games die out most of the times, unless they keep on upgrading them. Even games that give the player exactly what they want (zombie survival) will die out if they don't update it constantly with new content. War thunder is currently working really hard to preserve its great community.
Unless DayZ does the same thing and adds bigger worlds, new weapons and more possibilities for the player, it can be seen as a GTA map: you grow tired of it.
Over to Con!
Scenario: I was, in fact, talking about the tv show (not a video game). While this has no bearing on a currently released video game, it does prove that interesting stories can still be written with the topic. Video games just have to be a little more hands-on.
Creativity: I wasn't insinuating anything. I was just remarking on how games like the ones in the dead rising series teach you to look at commonplace items in new ways (not just as potential weapons). If I'm not mistaken, that's how most inventions were come up with, right? The inventor sees a hole that needs to be filled, looks at what he has, fills the whole in an intriguing way, and then refines and markets the idea. And inventors are known as probably the most creative form of people (who still support society in some helpful way *cough* abstract artists *cough*).
They still sell: so your argument boils down to the fact that zombie killing is fun, but needs more depth? More story? If so, you could just reread my scenario argument. Getting better writers may not solve every problem (like annoyed randomly generated missions, but things like that are in every game), but it will certainly be a leap in the right direction.
Not as good as they used to be: That's fair enough, but didn't resident evil stop being about zombies? I myself have never played the series (which, at this point in the argument, I'm beginning to regret), but you yourself said "initially, they're just regular zombies..". At the fourth game in the series, are they still "just regular zombies"? If they are, I might as well conceed. I don't know of any old zombie games (although maybe thats a reason in and of itself).
Serves best as extra content: Well, your argument about multiplayer applies to any multiplayer game. That is, except WoW. Who knows why that is. However, maybe a zombie MMO is a niche that you feel hasn't been filled by DayZ. In that regard, I hope H1Z1 is good, because I agree with you about how dull DayZ is. However, I just don't enjoy it, and there are people out there who do, so we shouldn't cross it off the list yet.
Anyway, that was what I had. Thank you for accepting my debate, and it was nice arguing over a topic I enjoy talking about.
Over to Pro.
I. Con's arguments:
Con said here that you can still come up with original scenario's here and still make a good game. His example for originality was "walking dead" (the show!). I have countered that by saying two things: A. pretty much every genre can be made into a good game given a great storyline. It's simply harder to still find zombie games that do have a good storyline.
B. Currently, there are no recent zombie games that sell because of their storyline.
2) Creative effort
Opponent gave the sole example of tools being made in dead rising 3. I countered that by saying there isn't really a reason to make these things, to which Con agreed. Con said however, it may stimulate people to become inventors. Aren't there better ways to teach children creativity? By letting them play with lego blocks, for example? Too bad Con can't respond to that point anymore.
3) Takes skill
4) they still sell
My counter here was that they sell because people do love zombies and have high expectations. They just don't pay off. Nonetheless, I also give pretty much every zombie game a chance but hardly ever get amazed by the game. They are just not as good compared to what other genres are currently pulling off.
II. My case:
1. Not as good as they used to be
My argument is self-explanatory. Pro countered by showing that RE6 was exceptionally good. He also talked about RE not being about zombies as much. RE4 still started out with regular zombies, but that is the only game of the series I have played. The review of RE6 I posted earlier showed very little zombies like Pro said, so I don't know what to do here anymore.
I think my argument still holdswater as I have shown that 2/3 RE fans prefer the older version over the newer.
2. Serves best as extra content
This argument was pretty weak and applies only to CoD zombies. However, this is where the two most-played zombie games are enlisted: CoD zombies and DayZ. Con made me doubt if making DayZ a game on its own was such a bad idea though.
This was a hard topic to debate. A gamer's heart will ofcourse follow pro's initial argument: yes, we do want to see more zombie games.
I think I have shown that zombie games are not improving, but instead taking a step back. I've also brought doubt to all of Con's reasons why zombie games should be made.
A big thank you to Con for starting this debate!
I really enjoyed it!
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