ShockCast Episode 85 – “How Many Genres do we REALLY Need?”

Hey folks! Sorry for the delay, but we’re here with episode 85 for your listening pleasure. Join the colorful cast of Joel, Giuseppe, David, Chad and our new writer Isshak as they discuss a couple most interesting topics. First off, we talk about the ridiculous nature of video game genres, then move over to talk about how achievements and trophies improve gaming (or do they?) and how the “achievement whore” mindset is encroaching upon our non-game activities in life. We also discuss, as usual, the week in news and what games we’ve been playing this week, so hit the break and check out this week’s episode.

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  • Eximius Sorel

    If you want my opinion on the various kinds of RPG genres. I think most developers use the concept of “RPG Elements” in other genres as a type of “crutch” to lead the consumer base to believe the gameplay is any different.

    If “RPG elements” aren’t INTERGRAL to the gameplay and are just use it as a type measuring system for character stats. Then I can’t call that game as an RPG.

    • Anonymous

      I agree with you, good sir. Like we mentioned in the episode, Call of Duty and Forza have a leveling system – a measurement of your participation (although it doesn’t have much to do with stats in those games). Yet, no one would call those an RPG, so I’m unsure why companies like BioWare insist on calling Mass Effect 2 – as great a game as it is – an RPG.

      I’d like the game regardless of what you call it, you might as well label it so people know what it really is instead of half-truths and mashed-up genres.

      • Eximius Sorel

        I actually addressed this issue of genre confusion on my Facebook Article on the FPS Genre and the gaming industry around it.

        And I mentioned this in it:

        “Developers use the “RPG Element” as crutches to hide what is a similar playstyle. And I think that’s an incorrent way to use “RPG Elements”. It should NOT hide gameplay but be an intergral PART of the gameplay. Look at the Valkyria Chronicles Series (yeah I know…but I can’t praise that game enough). When you look at its combat mechanics it is a radical departure from traditional run and gun tactics. The BLiTZ battle system is that of “Battlefield Chess” and it uses RPG elements in a way that is integral to it. A jobs system (RPG Element 1) defines strengths and weaknesses between different types of units. For example the Commando Class excels at killing infantry but will do absolutely terrible against a mobilized unit because of its rather low HP stat (RPG Element 2). The Scout Class has high amounts of AP (RPG Element 3) but inferior Attack Stats (RPG Element 4) because it’s a unit made for recon and capturing enemy encampments.”

  • Today at the NY Comic Con, an Ubisoft PR rep called Shoot Many Robots a “FPS RPG.”  Are there any elements of EITHER of those in that game?

    • Eximius Sorel

      I am not going to be surprised if I see a “Massively Multiplayer Online Action Adventure First Person Shooter Role Playing Game”.

      And that will be the day I pull out all of my hair, because I know at some point Activision going to do something like that. XD

  • Fallout New Vegas tricked me into playing a game for a stupid PS3 Trophy. I played it through on Hardcore Mode for a “special reward” which ended up being a useless gold trophy.

  • how about sequence….rpg+rhythm game?  *sigh*   I CAN´T WAIT FOR ANGRY BIRDS RPG!!!

  • i hear the whole podcast now…and ..well, it is like when they try to classify types of music….and everybody hate pop punk , don´t we?