With this being my 100th article for the PlayStation Brahs I wanted to take some time and discuss this struggle I have been having. See as part of my persona I am known as the Indie Legend but that doesn’t mean there isn’t room for major titles. I still love games like God of War, Red Dead Redemption, Final Fantasy, Resident Evil and more recently Marvel’s Spider-Man.
Now I know you’re probably thinking that is to be expected and I am just being silly but here is the problem. I love indie games, seriously it has become a problem. This isn’t the typical problem though, it’s not obsession that is driving me here. The fact I am a fan of indie games and that I want to spread the word for these indie developers is not the problem. The problem is keeping the two separate. But why? Why would I want to do that? Well I’ll tell you. When my first review was published I was ecstatic. I was pretty much the happiest I had been in a long time. What game do I speak of? Conan Exiles of course. I love the game by Funcom flaws and all. It didn’t stop there though, oh no it didn’t. Next would come Moonlighter by Digital Sun and I really felt like I hit my stride with this one. I knew what direction I wanted to go in and I knew exactly how felt about the outcome of the review. After that there have been a handful more indie game reviews and some have even blown away my expectations with the amount of views they received. People really seemed to enjoy them and this was incredible to me.
Then came the slew of titles I was writing about that did not fall under the indie category and I started to question myself. Am I looking at these indie titles and judging them the same way I am judging these AAA games? Should I hold them to the same standard? Should I take it easy on a developer knowing that they might not have all the resources to put out a polished product? Question after question started swirling around in my mind. How could I possibly love indie games so much if I didn’t at least cover these aspects? And here is the problem. I have to somehow understand that in reality these are separate but then again they are not. I have to be able to know that when an indie developer blows me away with something beautiful in one of their games it doesn’t mean that they cared more about the game, no it just means that just like the other developers they brought their ‘A’ game.
Now this isn’t meant to debate which is better, Indie games or AAA games. I am just trying to make the people aware that read my reviews that a ton of thought goes into my decision. I do at times treat indie titles the same way I do major titles. Is it always fair, probably not but at the end of the day a game is a game. I will break down a game and look at its mechanics, how the game responds to what I am telling it to do. Is the art worth the tiresome story with lackluster characters? Is the menu user friendly? Did I get bored after thirty minutes of doing the same thing over and over again? All these things I take into account regardless the developer.
There are variables to me that boost an indie game though. Artwork, animation and all of the above are a big factors for me. If you visually put in the work as an indie developer I will applaud the creativity even though I know AAA titles do the same. Trine is one that comes to mind, absolutely gorgeous colors in that game. Hey but you said it doesn’t mean they cared about the game more what gives? True but you have to understand there are other variables such as budget and staff to take into consideration. Axiom Verge was done by one person. I’ll say that again Axiom Verge was done by one person. Yeah let that sink in. Wait…you haven’t played that game? Shame on you.
Are you trying something unique? Indie developers can take risks with their creativity at times and when they do you have no choice but to tip your cap. If you give me a game mechanic that keeps the game interesting throughout even with little story then you deserve that extra credit. Yes the big boys get creative as well but they also have hundreds of others to bounce ideas off of and maybe that’s why some of these can be such a hot mess. If I had to take away one thing from what I am finally starting to understand is that yes there will be times I judge on a curve and that won’t necessarily be a bad thing. Or is it?
What does all this mean though Indie Legends? Well… it means nothing and yet it means everything…to me.
I love you peeps and thank you for reading any article I post.
The support is greatly appreciated and for all of you out there whether it be an indie game or a major title, keep on gaming you legend.