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Are video games really getting worse? – The Eleight

Are video games really getting worse?

Yechan Kwon, Staff Writer

When a new video game in a series comes out, there are usually people who enjoy the game and all it has to offer, and those who say that the older ones are better and that modern game developers aren’t making games like they used to.

In fact, when something new comes out, people are always comparing it to what came before it and seeing what it has improved upon and what did it do worse.

Some of the issues that players find with newer games or updates on old ones include microtransactions, the story of a newer game messing up the series’ already existing lore, and the developers adding new features that are either uncreative, drop the difficulty, or make the game unenjoyable in some other way.

For example with Pokemon, there are many people complaining that Game Freak “ran out of ideas for new pokemon” starting from Pokemon Black and White. That game introduces new pokemon that people view as “uncreative” and “bland” such as Klinklang, a pokemon based on rotating gears, and Garbodor, a pokemon based on a garbage heap.

Another example is Halo. In that series, the quality started going downhill from Halo 4. From that game onward, players say that the games became less open and free while also overall taking away a lot of the charm.

As Jayse Petersen, a junior and fan of games who has been playing for a while, puts it, “The new Halos have mostly flat characters and a few rounded characters that are a welcome addition to the team, like Roland and Lasky, but the rest are just plot blobs with no personality or traits. Everything they do is just for advancing the plot, no witty dialogue, not banter, no shrugs, or other human gestures or sounds. They’re just cardboard.”

However, while some arguments against newer games may have good points, some arguments are very subjective and rather biased. Take for example the previous point on Pokemon. Many people are quick to hate the later games for Pokemon that seem very uncreative, but that is very much their own opinion and isn’t a sign of future games being objectively worse as those Pokemon can be a favorite to others.

For example, Klefki, a Pokemon based off of a bundle of keys, is considered a “dumb design” by many, but when it comes to competitive battling, it is a good support Pokemon with prankster and support moves like spikes, thunder wave, and defog.


– Klefki, a Pokemon called out for a “bad” design can actually be a useful support Pokemon in battle

As for the statement of “newer games are getting easier,” it’s true the developers have made games “easier” in a sense by adding more mechanics that weren’t previously in older ones, but easier wouldn’t be the right word. If anything, the newer games have been getting more fair. There is much less AI cheating and more mechanics are friendlier towards newer players who aren’t as experienced as the veterans.

However, game developers sometimes do know how to throw in a little challenge to give the veterans, who are expecting a boring, easy, blaze through, a little spin such as Ultra Necrozma from Pokemon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon and Clownpiece from Touhou 15: Legacy of Lunatic Kingdom.

Overall, while there is an overall opinion among veteran gamers that games have been deteriorating in quality as time goes on, that isn’t something that can be proven or disproven.