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Are multiplayer games killing their single-player counterparts

By: Moses Abaortae

  |   December 25th, 2012   |  
New Video Game, "Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare 3" Hits Stores On Tuesday

We take a look at and analyse whether or not we could be seeing the last of the triple-A story driven games.

If one takes a look at the best selling games in the past five years then the Call of Duty games rank number one by a country mile and then some. The series has perfected a model for financial success which every other studio is trying to replicate, more often than not by missing the point.

While Activision has found the winning formula and is more than happy to let its two developing studio’s tweak and enhance it rather than change it altogether, other studios are picking up bits and pieces from their model which do not fit.

One such example is the tacked on multiplayer component of Spec Ops: The Line. The game redefined and deconstructed the shooter genre with its gripping, harrowing and cognitive dissonance inducing single-player campaign. Yet, while its single player was a gem, its multiplayer felt broken, disconnected and as if it did not belong in the game at all.

When asked for the reason behind the game’s atrocious multiplayer mode, the developers conceded that they had been pushed into adding the feature by the publishers as they wanted it to try and replicate some level of the Call of Duty game’s success.

Instead, the move backfired and Jager Games themselves are left furious at its inclusion. However, that particular developer is not the only one that has felt the need to expand on the single player experience with nearly every developer and publisher looking at ways to add a multiplayer component to their games.

Naughty Dog added it with Uncharted 2: Among Thieves and refined it in Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception. The game is in essence, a story based single-player game. Another example is the Assassin’s Creed series which introduced a rather novel multiplayer mode in Brotherhood and has only grown since.

BioShock Infinite developer, Irrational Games seem to be an exception as they confirmed that their upcoming game will not have a multiplayer mode. However, the studio conceded that they had been working on an experimental concept to bring some player versus player action.

While it has worked in some cases, with Uncharted and Assassin’s Creed being two game which have benefitted, others such as Spec Ops: The Line and Dead Space 2 actually lost out due to its inclusion. Both had solid single player experiences but left a bitter taste once the multiplayer aspect was experienced.

There is no doubt that single-player only experiences are becoming a thing of the past, but that does not mean that story driven titles are going anywhere, players should just expect to see a multiplayer component more often.

Disclaimer: the views and opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the editorial policy of news.wishfree.com in any way.