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Comment: Re:Athletes (Score 2, Insightful) 164

by V Radcliffe (#16360217) Attached to: Land of the Videogame Star
"I just can't see myself watching it"

Allot of people say that here in the states, and I think that has more to do with presentation than game itself. No one has done it right to my knowledge (at least not in the US). We had that arcade game show on Nickelodeon (it wasn't too bad as a game show itself, but was far from a game centered around gaming), and Arena on G4 (which among other things edited the game play down too much for formating into the time slot, and had terrible commentators interrupting game play).

One of the key problems with bringing gaming to an audience is scope. Games aren't made with an audience in mind, but the vantage point of the player. For current games, the only real way to show the audience any real good picture of the game play is to show both sides simultaneously and a third perspective for the overall picture (which a spectator mode camera can easily accommodate, but would need to be trained to follow the action well). Dividing a TV screen isn't going to pan well with that for long periods of time, so the only real answer is live stream of the Internet, which isn't bad since the target audience would gladly welcome this medium over some premium cable network.

The best answer is to design a game with features to accommodate a larger audience, and not water down gameplay in the process. First of all, games have to be balanced out much better than they are. A lot of the games favored in tournaments are notorious for being severally unbalanced (any of the Namco fighting games, Capcom's Marvel vs. series to name a few). It isn't a particularity easy task, but not all together impossible (Virtua Fighter, Super Smash Bros, and Starcraft are good examples of well balanced games). Secondly, the game needs to have camera modes that takes away the player GUI, shows off the best angles for the stage or, follows the action, moves naturally, is non-repetitive, and overall gives the most entertaining angles for audience members on the fly. Lastly, whatever genre is chosen (real or turn based strategy, tournament fighting, first or third person shooter or even puzzle), the game has to be designed with the audience in mind. That doesn't have to mean watered down gameplay, but it does mean the game has to have presentable graphics, sound, and be interesting to get the audience pumping. There are a lot of sports out there that aren't action packed, but keep the audience enthralled with strategy and suspense (like golf), so this doesn't necessarily mean gore and fast paced action.

It'll take a completely different mindset to make people want to watch games, and I don't see that right now, but I'll put money down that when that right things comes around, no one would think they would have watched it when it hits big.

"Catch a wave and you're sitting on top of the world." - The Beach Boys

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