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Can A Videogame Actually Be Broken? Stuck
Posted on November 2, 2011 at 01:23 PM.

Can a videogame actually be broken? Well, figuratively of course. We see this term thrown around a lot these days. What makes a videogame broken? Is it subjective or objective? Some people claim a game is broken when a certain aspect of that game doesnít work properly. For example, zone defense in a football game. If this aspect of the game does not work correctly then I guess itís conceivable the game is broken. If the gamer cannot get past that glaring issue who could blame them for making the broken game claim.

As always, there are two sides to every story. What about the gamers who claim the game is broken when a seemingly small aspect of the game is not to their liking? For some gamers it seems like the developers canít win for losing. No gamer should have to play a game they donít like, or arenít able to have fun with. But there has to be a limit right? Is it okay for gamers to complain about players having the wrong Shoes, and incorrect Sock length? These have been considered game breakers by some gamers. But hey, thatís their opinion right?

Even patches to fix these so called ďgame breakersĒ sometimes create more issues than the game had in the first place. Take the second patch for NCAA Football 12. While it fixed some issues, it messed up the no huddle offense. It begs the question, are patches even worth it? Most people would probably say yes, but you have to wonder what it would be like if the developers were pressed to get it right the first time around.

In the end, there is no right or wrong when it comes to this argument. Every gamer is well within their rights to claim whether a game is broken or not. Itís all subjective.

As one man so famously said, ďNo dreads, no piece.Ē
# 1 Retropyro @ Nov 2
I would say a game is "broken" when advertised game modes are unplayable or do not live up to the developers/publishers hype.

If it's on the back of the box, it better work in game.
# 2 Gotmadskillzson @ Nov 2
Patches have become the downfall of sports games. Developers are over reliant on them nowadays. Something is wrong everytime you release a sports game there is ALWAYS a first day patch for it.

Far as what is broken or not, to me, if you going to make a sports game, then your game better have all the basic fundamentals of what make that sport that sport. So if it is a football game, I expect to see scrambling QBs, blocked FGs, blocked punts, penalties being called, option offense working properly, QBs rolling out of the pocket and throwing on the run, kick returners returning kick offs and punts back for a TD from time to time.

For a basketball game, I expect to see alley oop dunks, fast breaks, layups, dunks, tip dunks, blocked shots, blocked dunks, blocked layups, steals, fouls being called. etc.

Some reason however people seem to let Madden and NCAA slide when it comes to how unrealistic it is. They put up with their BS every year and say well it will get better next year. We our coming to the end of this generation of consoles lifecycle and they are still saying it will get better next year ? SMH

There is no excuse when I can look at games like MLB The Show and FIFA. The fan base of those 2 games demanded realism and wouldn't put up with BS. I mean could you imagine playing a baseball game and nobody every did a double play, stole a base or hit a home run ?

But for some reason, in the football games, teams can't run the option or spread correctly and you have people say oh well it is just a game, it doesn't bother me. Pass interference never called ? No problem, it is just a game.

It is like the fan base of NCAA and Madden have been brain washed to tolerate BS. As though hey if I can play in an online dynasty or online franchise with my buddies the game is great, that is all that matters is that the online is working.

I am sick and tired of the BS from Madden and NCAA. I can't accept or tolerate mediocrity. Instead of those 2 series getting better this generation, they got worse. Only thing that got better was graphics, even though in NCAA 12 white uniforms don't even get dirty.

Somebody needs to light a fire under their butts or slap them in the face and tell them to wake the hell up. Have some damn pride in your job.

I have programmed and designed things for years now. I could never half do stuff and say oh well I will still get paid, this is good enough. I have too much pride, what I put out there represents ME.

And the whole oh they only have 8 months to do stuff is nothing but a BS cop out excuse that way too many people believe. They have no pride and are simply collecting a pay check and it shows everytime they release a NCAA or Madden.
# 3 Marcus34 @ Nov 2
It's obviously opinion. What will effect one gamer may not effect the next.

With that said, NCAA was so insanely BROKEN this year that I can't even understand how one could say it isn't unless they just aren't paying attention
# 4 matt8204 @ Nov 2
Sometimes I wish I was 12 years old playing NHL '94 and Madden '94 again. Back then, it was just about having fun and messing around with our friends. We didn't mind the money goals/plays or the glitches. We laughed at them. Hell, I remember when the ice would turn colors in the NHL games everytime you went from the menu/pause screen back to live action. We probably weren't savvy enough to notice if the Cover 2 wasn't properly replicated. You don't notice that stuff when you're younger. It was just part of the deal. As we get older and technology evolves, we come to expect more from video games and when they don't deliver, we're deeply disappointed.
# 5 jyoung @ Nov 2
NCAA 12.

'Nuff said.
# 6 BaylorBearBryant @ Nov 2
I think wEEman33 hit the nail on the head.
# 7 khaliib @ Nov 2
I think the thread itself testifies to the status of NCAA 12.

The fact that a good 99% of the post about NCAA 12 are negative across the board in pretty much all gaming forums.

I'll just jump on Skillz's post and my perspective as an individual with football experience at all 3 levels as a DB.

I can't speak on the programming side, but as a former player and current D1 college intern, the fundaments of football displayed in this game is just plain "Lazy"!!!

The fundamentals of the sport has been missing since day one on Next-Gen.

The biggest mistake they make is developing based off of what they see from "Game Tape".

They need to go to a practice and video tape the fundaments that are coached/practiced every practice (that's how important they are).

The missing fundaments of the game are evident by the fact that they just recently announced they have "ONE" person on the developement team that has some actual college experience from a particular position.

One person!!!

Enough said.

Finally, they (EA) were willing to give refunds to gamer's who demanded a refund under the "It's Broken" label (I called them).

So if they were willing to give a refund with that as a reason, then they themselves acknowledged their game was broken.

The ability from the programming side might be there, but the "ability" from a football side "IS NOT" there, period.

That's why there seems to be such a difficult correlation with the term "fundaments" and the end product in their football game.

Since their 1st release on Next-Gen, gamer's have been pointing out the missing football fundamentals that are missing.

Core fundamentals are the foundation the game has to be built from and that's why this developer's football games have suffered year after year.

Evident by the fact that if they touch one thing, another area is impacted because the fundamentals of each phase of football are not there (evident by Ben's response in patch #4).

I wish 2-3 developers would come together and partner in making an authentic College football game.

I normally would say sorry for the rant, but we've allowed them toooooo much space as the "only" football developer and they've taken advantage of it and our desire/passion for football.

I'll probably get banned come next year's hype time because I will be calling them on this and really push for answers pertaining to the "Fundamentals of Footall" instead of the visual fluff they like to go into great detail to showcase.
# 8 The Yurpman @ Nov 2
Yeah, all you have to do is look no further then NCAA 12. That is the definition of a broken game.
# 9 AllJuicedUp @ Nov 2
This doesn't say much for the OS review system...

Give a game an 8.5 when it comes out (only .5 away from being an "All-Time Classic") and then imply it is a broken game (and has been from day 1) after the fact.
# 10 Raven Nation42 @ Nov 2
What is terribly missing is a true Quality control checklist that identifies misses and opportunities that would mandate corrections additional beta testing before this product could be approved for final production. All major 500 fortune companies have this in place. The terrible trend here is that this company has moved away from this each year. The 8-10 month production cycle reason is a crutch that is truthfully a poor excuse that should never be used. Now what should be in place is a development plan that span 4yrs instead of several months. After all, who are you competing against??? As an option, maybe consider pushing the release date of the game from July to August (Madden's launch now mirror's the NFL kickoff weekend) to allow more time to perform beta testing. But here's the key this beta testing should stem from hardcore gamers & casual gamers alike. At least you'd get a true pulse check that makes sure that what seen on Saturday's is represented in the game. Now we understand that you will never be able to satisfy everyone. But to simply continue to release a product annually that was unfinished, to say the least is unacceptable by a company who greatest foe is not competition but even worse.... Complacency
# 11 inchez34 @ Nov 2
I wouldn't say "broken". Maybe unfinished, but not broken.
# 12 jjsmitty34 @ Nov 2
I feel when a game constantly freezes, it's broken.
# 13 oldschool127 @ Nov 2
I've been gaming since the late 80's. I've seen some ridiculious stuff and I've seen some great games. No game is perfect. Every game has bugs and glitches. But a game that is riddled with bugs and doesn't play as it should is "broken" to me. I don't care about the correct sock height or if a player's hair is long enough. I care mostly about gameplay and presentation. I don't expect a lot but I see way too many games getting released that shouldn't be. It's to the point I won't buy a sports game the first feew months after launch. I let the patches fix most of the problems. I've been burned too many times and I'm stuck with a game I can't play until patches come out.

So I let other gamers buy this garbage and test the games. If I'm patient enough I can wait a few months and buy the game on sale or discounted. I do miss the days of buying my game early but every time I do I get burned. Take NBA 2K12. Nothing is really wrong with it. It just needs to be tuned up a bit. But I'm back to playing The Show and NBA 2K11 while I wait for patches and the DLC so I can trade legends. Of course I'm also waiting for the Lockout to end so I can have my rookies and accurate rosters, but my point is this $60 is now collecting dust.

We should be able to return games but we can't. The only way around this is to buy all your games used at places like Gamestop. Gamestop has tons of used copies of NCAA 12 right now. You can return the game for a full refund within 7 days. That gives you enough time to see if the game is actually "broken" to you. That way you don't get burned.
# 14 truintellectplaya @ Nov 3
It is definitely subjective because IMHO I game can only be broken if the core gameplay is broken or not reflective of the sport it is trying to portray. IMO, The Show's pitcher/batter interaction is so bad and unrealistic that the game is broken. There is absolutely no type of trajectory on the ball it is like you are swinging at a flying saucer or something. People love the fact that it is difficult to hit but it is difficult because there is no rhyme or reason and it is unrealistic. Next, Madden is totally broken because the core defensive controls are too limited. You can not pick any defender you want at anytime in Madden. They really need to look into Icon based defense. Funny how the old tecmo bowl system had some core stuff better than Madden. At the end of the day what do I know. People love the Show and Madden but they are both broken to me because core gameplay is unrealistic or too limited.
# 15 nolesfan69 @ Nov 3
This is an excellent topic!! But personally for me NCAA 12 is a fun game but I just feel the game was rushed out 80% done. What I mean by that is code that is not put in correctly. I am not a developer so I really don't understand how a code can screw up another code or codes. But to be honest any kind of sports game I worry how unfinished the game will be at launch. But when it comes to games like Halo or Forza I never worry about getting an unfinished game. Any thoughts?

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