GameSurge Mainpage Find out more about us GameSurge community pages GameSurge hosting information Game news from around the web. To the GameSurge Mainpage To the Computers Mainpage To the Home Console Mainpage To the Arcade Mainpage To the Strategies Mainpage To the Features Mainpage
To the Home page
News, and the latest updates.
Stories from the past...
Submit News
Got a item of interest? Here's the place to go.
Your opinion always counts on how we can make GameSurge even better.
Comments on our features, by you, the viewers.
To computer site map
Tweaks, reviews and a handy driver index highlight our newest section
Looking to buy one of the hottest games? We have it covered.
Get a advanced look at the games of tomorrow.
Find out more about the people behind your favorite game.
Need Help? We have a very large selection of walkthroughs now up.
A special section featuring the best in artwork and images.
To Features site map
The written word, by staff and viewers.
Game Guy
A bi-monthly column contributed by Mark H Walker, an independant writer in the Gaming community.
Pictures from around the web.
Our current hosting plans and features.
Site Information
Who we are, what we do, our policies and job positions.
To Strategy site map
Strategy Index Guide
The resource for the best articles for the best games. Now with support over 55 games
Strategy Menu
  • Arcade/Pinball
  • Dreamcast
  • Files
  • GameBoy
  • GameGear
  • Genesis
  • N64
  • PC
  • PlayStation
  • Strategy Indexes
  • To Console site map
    The Sony PlayStation, and beyond...
    Nintendo 64
    Currently Down.
    The Dreamcast resource, and more. Home of the DC Technical pages.

    To the Features MainpageTo the EditorialsTo the Gallery MainpageGameSurge information pagetO To the Arcade MainpageTo Pinball menuTo Arcade games Menu

    GameGuy: The “Where’s my Game?” Edition

    By Mark H. Walker

    I love to game. I love everything about it. I love browsing through the games on the shelves, dashing home with my new obsession, ripping the shrink wrap off (and not even taking time to throw it away), popping in the CD, and playing. I love everything about it, but I don't like to wait.

    I bet you don't either.

    Yet sometimes it seems that us gaming types spend more time waiting for a piece of software that's missed its release date than we do playing. How come? The answer isn't easy, it would be nice to blame the mythical "suits" -a title development teams throw on anyone that baths regularly and owns a tie without a little clip in the back- but the blame is not wholly theirs. Neither -as some pundits would have you believe- is it your fault for demanding too much bang for your bucks.

    Imagine this: Joe Gamer says, "I want a good game!" The publishing company says, "You want a GOOD game? Well, in that case, we'll have to delay the release six months, but remember this is your fault. After all, you're the one who asked for a GOOD game."

    Face it, making a computer game is a twenty-four month endeavor -sometimes more, but rarely less. That fact is often overlooked, ignored, or impossibly hedged on by every element in the process. The result is delays, hurt feelings and dissatisfied customers.

    Frequently the problems start before (way before) the first line of code hits a computer screen.

    Day one, executive board room, John Doe Publishing:

    Executive One: "We have a hole in the release schedule sixteen months from now."

    Executive Two: "Well, action games are big, let's plug in a first person shooter."

    Executive One: "Done."

    I'm not kidding. Certainly not all games are birthed this way, but many are. Executives, most of which have never pounded a line of code nor twisted a joystick in their lives, set a date based on the company's fiscal needs. No development team, no design document, no story-boards, just a date. A date you know will be missed.

    But as I said before, the suits are often just a convenient alibi. A game's development is fraught with time-suckers. Perhaps the most deadly of these insidious parasites is Scope Creep. A sponger that normally resides in the hearts of the development team, it has also been known to infest marketeers. Although most game parameters are set in the aboriginal design document -a hundred page missive that includes everything from the odds of connecting with a rocket launcher to the names of each character, weapon, and location- the designer and programmers may decide to add fresh technology or unit capabilities in mid-stream. Hence the scope of the game increases, and the time it takes to complete tags right along.

    Often these changes are for the better - for instance well-conceived and artfully implemented technological or creative enhancements. Unfortunately, the creep all too frequently has little to do with the quality of the game, and more to do with the bullets on the back of the box. If real-time strategy game "A" has 30 levels, then real-time strategy game "B" must have 30 levels. It doesn't matter if "B" told an enthralling story in its 25 levels. The marketeers want five more levels -no matter how repetitive they may be.

    There is, however, one other cause for delay that cynical gaming journalists often overlook. Perchance the software is delayed because the development team, marketeers, publishers, art directors, and folks that clean the building at night, want to make sure the game is a good as it can be. Sometimes delays are merely an indication of a team that will release no gaming wine before its time.

    I'll wait for that.

    I bet you will too.

    © Mark H. Walker, LLC 2001

    Mark H. Walker is a veteran interactive entertainment journalist who has written over 40 books including his recently released Medal of Honor and Wizardry 8 strategy guides

    " "

    To Reviews Mainpage
    Zalman: ZM-DS4F Headphones

    An affordable, ultra-portable headphone set.

    To Previews Mainpage


    » Contact Us » Top » Homepage

    All HTML coding are original and © GameSurge.
    Original Graphics and layout are copyright © of P.D.Sanderson and shivaSite Designs.
    No part of this site may be reproduced without prior consent.
    Site best viewed with I.E./NS 4+.
    Resolution is 1024x768 + / 16 bit+ color recommended
    Designed by shivaSite