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Best atmosphere

 
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nickherc255
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 16, 2014 4:23 am     Post subject: Best atmosphere Reply with quote

In your opinion, which game has the most awesome atmosphere?
My first choice would be Red Alert 1. I was 10 years old when I played it and I was in awe. Being a bit of a history nerd even back then, I could really get into the whole alternate timeline. Migs, Mammoth tanks, Tanya (!), German shepherds, sounds of firing tanks… it all had such authentic feel to it.
Clips between missions were awesome too. “Stalin” really acted like a paranoid asshole with grand ego.



Honorable mentions:
Monkey Island 1&2
Half Life 1
Another World
Civilization 1
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Quadko
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 16, 2014 12:51 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

C&C is a good one, as are the rest. I love the "late vga and early supervga" graphics style.

Stand-out atmosphere games for me are Torment and Neverwinter Nights, Syndicate and Commandos, King's Quest V and Space Quest III/IV, Daggerfall and Stonekeep, Freespace and Tachyon, Crusader: No Regret and Erik the Unready, and last but not least, Prince of Persa.

Looking at the list, each were in a genera I played in CGA/EGA/early VGA games, but took the ideas I was used to to a whole new level with higher graphics and more processing power and better control. They also are mostly before the 3D accelerator/FPS revolution, which was fun but I always felt was a step backwards in "goodness and atmosphere," as much as I played all the big ones (dooms/quakes/duke/unreals) for hours and with (against!) friends. Later games (say, Oblivion and Skyfall) are fantastic fun and atmospheric, but are evolutionary rather than revolutionary the way those games were.

I'm sad most modern games that are beautiful either chase photorealism or cute cartoony art; the vga graphics I love best are long forgotten, even among "retro" styles. Happy

Fun question!

My Honorable Mentions to the rest of Space Quest series, Breach, Elite, 7th Guest, Myst, Ultima IV-VII, Bananoid, Wing Commander I&II, Sopwith, Might & Magic Xeen (IV & V), Phantasie III, and StarFlight. These just miss making the list by being too early or too late to make the huge atmospheric impression on me that the above made; though I loved and spent many hours with each game. Indeed, the contrast from Wing Commander to Tachyon, or Might & Magic to Daggerfall is what puts the latter on the list.
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MrFlibble
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 16, 2014 3:28 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

I wonder how you guys would actually define "atmosphere" (since this is a quality of games that is often mentioned and discussed).

Is it an intrinsic part of the game design that can be created and manipulated by the developers?

Or is it a subjective "feeling" that the player gets when interacting with the game world, and thus differs from person to person?

Or is it both? (the designers intended to evoke a certain emotional response in the player, and succeeded)
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Quadko
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 16, 2014 11:03 pm     Post subject: Reply with quote

Looking at my list and considering the question, it's a highly subjective "feeling" most of the time. I think some games aim for it and achieve it (say, Myst and 7th Guest), but mostly its a subjective magic where everything came together for me, including the games I played or skipped before playing a particular one.

As I understand it, it's a dopamine thing, as in "The feel-good hormone dopamine improves long-term memory". If you managed to hit high levels of dopamine (mostly because you are having fun) when you play, you remember the game, and it has a magic glow of "atmosphere." Best game in the world the same week as an important funeral - probably no good memories because no "good brain chemicals"; unless it cheered you up, then it will be the best game for the rest of your life since it moved you from "negative brain chems" "good brain chems" state.

Also, I think it is kind of like movies - lots of movies "should" be good, but just lack something - two that I love are John Carter and Prince of Persia, misses as movies even though made by the same brains that made Pirates of the Caribbean, a terrific hit. Why the last was a hit and the first two weren't, I don't know, but it is obvious when watching them. Yet take it apart, and editing, music, plot, acting, and so forth are all equally good. (Though I'm mad - John Carter in part was destroyed by pandering to 3D effects, which killed the 2D editing. Grrr. All the slow pacing or weird stuff suddenly made sense when I saw it in 3D finally, but killed an otherwise fun movie.)

But I hear music in my head with certain games, linking certain albums to certain games. And when I hear the album, I often think of the game and want to go play. Castle Master, Ultima Underworld and more have an album I bought at the same time and listened to over and over linked to them - something outside the game designer's control.

My $.02 for free, late at night, and on painkillers, so, worth what you paid for it. Happy Other opinions?
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nickherc
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 17, 2014 3:56 am     Post subject: Reply with quote

Quadko, you nailed it Cool.
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486 player
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 17, 2014 5:35 am     Post subject: Reply with quote

So far can't name one.
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Rhuantavan
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 05, 2014 8:19 am     Post subject: Reply with quote

For me it must be Betrayal at Krondor. Top music, superb writing and memorable characters.
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tienkhoanguyen
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 11, 2014 3:18 am     Post subject: Reply with quote

My favourite game of all time is this one because I made it. haha

http://www.mediafire.com/download/tjdkjewbfpcjfcb/ArkanDOS.EXE

It might still have glitches so be careful about getting too hooked on it. haha

I have been working day and night and it always needs improvements.

The copyright sign is there because Borland gave a free copy with restrictions.

They allow me to use their software however it needs to state that I wrote it using their software.

This is true and I am happy to do so.

The year is from 1987 or 1988 that they produced their software so that is why it seems old.

However my programming is very recent - just today haha
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tienkhoanguyen
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 11, 2014 3:21 am     Post subject: Reply with quote

P.S.

If you have downloaded my Arkanoid or Bricks older versions a few days ago. This one has been updated to fix a bunch of glitches. I could not believe calculating Sine and Cosine to detect collision around a ball is producing glitches in my app! Arghhhhhhhhhhhh haha
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