Deep, colorful thoughts

Momohime_VS_OrgeForget for a moment the play mechanics, RPG elements and side scrolling; why can’t more games, on all consoles, simply look like Muramasa: Demon Blade these days?

15 Responses to Deep, colorful thoughts

  1. Kale says:

    Because there’s not enough artists with sufficient fine/traditional arts skills working in the industry, that’s why. Also, there’s not enough cultured/socially refined/educated gamers out there to make “artistic games” profitable enough for the industry to seriously pursue them as visual genre. Gamers are content to remain in their stereotype of stigmatic ignorance and uncultured bliss of supposed “photo realism” (a complete misnomer and mere marketing gimmick). Most of them can barely read or write, much less interpret and/or intelligently appreciate actual art. “Photo realism” in games is, in truth, a condescension of epic proportions on the part of game developers, but the gamers themselves are simply too ignorant to catch the insult.

  2. Jack says:

    @Kale: Tell me how you really feel! πŸ™‚

    Anyone else?

  3. deepthought says:

    yeah i’d like more games with this or other styles.

    i remember the transition at disney when animators moved to 3d construction. Many artists start focussing on textures instead of gorgeous animation.

    another part is that I bet 3d games do want this level of detail, but this detail may be harder to produce in 3d than a realistic look is to produce. and the processing power may just not be there yet. I remember feeling the same about Jade Empire’s aesthetic the way I feel about this game. When I moved through a field and the high grass parted and swirled around me, and when rose petals would fall from trees, the aesthetic absolutely had me. So it’s possible to do some of this.

    maybe it’s a certain type of artist that is needed for this aesthetic in 2d as well?

    i dunno

  4. Kale says:

    I guess being a game artist myself, this is a personal topic and a constant battle we’re forced to wage on the inside of the industry. It drives most of us crazy. You have no idea how badly we’d all love to make games that were as beautiful as Muramasa. It would most certainly give us, the artists and developers, creative substantiation, but ultimately the lack of resources and market trends would defeat us. That’s one of the reasons, though, that we here at Gearbox have had such a blast working on Borderlands, intentionally making the game as a sort of “slap in the face” to a deeply saturated and creatively plateaued genre. We’ve taken a hell of a gamble, yes, but we’re terribly proud of what we’ve made. I’m not suggesting every developer take similar risks out of nowhere, but I do wish that more of them would simply grow the balls to try something fresh and new every once in a while.

  5. Verius says:

    Its sad that not nearly enough games are visually stunning and not need to rely on photo realism. Okami and TWEWY have a nice artstyle to them that set them apart.

  6. deepthought says:

    kale! you work at gearbox?! awesome!

    so the reason i didnt buy the last brothers in arms, unlike the 1st two which i bought immediately, was the lack of the previous coop mode. my buddies and i love commanding troops and the chess match of moving troops across a battlefield.

    bring that back and let us play the campaign that way and we’ll be best friends forever ever.

    or at least get bia2 on the backwards compatibility list- even though i understand games are no longer being added.

  7. mr.cranky says:

    kale’s awsome, like how you think man. theres some hope though for artistic games though. most of the creative looking games are on downloadable services right now but every now and then, a game like muramasa and a boy and his blob show up πŸ™‚

  8. Paul says:

    Well, Kale’s answers really takes the cake, but my reply was going to be: Art is hard. Making good art is even harder.

  9. Kale says:

    I can’t freakin’ wait for A Boy and His Blob! I’m buying it without question! πŸ˜‰

  10. Jack says:

    @Kale: Right. A Boy and His Blob is in this same family; good call.

    @Paul: No one ever said game design was easy! πŸ™‚

  11. other way to see things says:

    well if theres to many artsy colorfull games out there then it would be the same thing I am happy to have a few and not have to buy these games all the time, for the real world looking games I can wait a year and buy them cheaper

  12. LookItsLink says:

    You have a point. I guess it does make games like this more precious.

  13. gojiguy says:


    there is no shortage of artists in the game world. Definitely not.

    the reason there are not games that look like Muramasa is because of one thing: game sales.

    Look at the sales of colorful pretty 2D muramasa and then look at the sales of your next mediocre gritty TPS game.

    The majority has bad taste. That’s just it : P

    Not to mention people think 2d is archaic for some reason… I rue the day the next DS is released. It’s the only thing keeping glorious 2D alive.

  14. Mr.cranky says:

    Its always hard to make something look a little diffrent cause the stuff that sells the most is crap. I wish the core would support games that look or play diffrently. I like to support those games because a new expirence is always good.

  15. skeptical says:

    Wow… Kale gives a great and legitimate response, while I was going to just make a snarky comment about Unreal Engine. Well played, sir!

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