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Mobile gaming: Are you one of us or one of 'them'? [roundtable]
Have we done this before? Regardless, let's do it again!

How do y'all currently feel about mobile(/tablet) gaming? Do you prefer playing games on a phone to playing on a dedicated handheld? Has the best of iOS impressed you more than the best of the 3DS/Vita/PSP? Is mobile really the place where the most interesting innovations in gaming are happening? Name names.

Bonus Question: Why is the gaming press collectively gaga over this stuff, when they never gave half a shit (collectively) about handhelds? Is pocket space really at such a premium?

Have at it, Apple Scruffs! I'll chime in later.

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Posted: 08/29/12, 02:41:18  - Edited by 
 on: 08/29/12, 02:42:36
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GelatinousEncore said:
Because devices that do other, more important things than play games have the capacity to run amazing games too, so what's the point?

To play good games using gaming controls? I mean you can ask what the point is all that you want, but tons of people are buying 3DS' and 3DS games when almost everyone has a phone they could buy (much cheaper) games on. Clearly there is a point in a lot of people's minds. And to me it's like saying... what is the point of buying real meat when you can buy spam for much cheaper. Well, maybe I don't want spam?

Anyway, I just don't buy the basic logic. Using that logic, everyone has a PC, so why are consoles still around?
Posted: 08/29/12, 05:01:01
I love my dedicated gaming handhelds and will continue to enjoy them for as long as they exist.

I do however play games on my iPhone. Where's My Water, Cut the Rope, Tiny Wings, Age of Pinballs, Draw Something, Doodle Jump, etc.
These games don't hold my attention for too long, but when standing in line somewhere I will pull out my phone.

"Ticket to Ride" on the iPhone is very well done. I love it.

There are those money-grabbing titles though. They're all over Facebook too. I makes me sad that "You Don't Know Jack" has become one.
Posted: 08/29/12, 05:09:06
I think the phone is great for asynchronous stuff, because you always have your phone with you. Any moment you could get a little notification that it's your turn in a game. I love that kind of stuff. Just little moments to look forward to throughout the day. It'd be great to see Nintendo do something like this with Advance Wars or Pokemon or something like that. Could you imagine a Pokemon battle that you just have with someone over the course of a day or a week? I'm sure they could tweak certain things to make that work really well.

Other than that? I just like doing word games anymore. Word Breaker, Spell Tower, Words with Friends, etc. Any game I can type in is great, as the consoles/handhelds haven't topped how quickly I can type on my iPhone.

There have been moments where I was addicted to Tiny Wings or Whale Trail, but I think the novelty has mostly worn off. If I'm ever caught in line waiting for lunch meat or something, I'd probably just go for Word Breaker or Family Feud (which kinda sucks) or something.

Traditional games mostly blow because there aren't any buttons, or my fingers are going to be in the way most of the time. When people say that Nintendo should put Mario on the iPhone, all I do is shake my head. It would be awesome. They have some games that could work on the phone really well, like Fire Emblem or Advance Wars or Pokemon or whatever, but I don't think it's worth risking the cannibalization of their hardware.

Edit: Oh no, YDKJ has been bitten by "feed me money" syndrome?? I thought I had heard good things about it on Facebook. Didn't the jump to Facebook happen after the development team/franchise was sold from THQ?
Posted: 08/29/12, 05:11:33  - Edited by 
 on: 08/29/12, 05:13:32

That too, I didn't even think of it. I started typing so I don't even know if you said it there, too, but people are like "uh, no, it plays DVDs, too. Its not a gamesystem, its a PLAYSTATION." The lengths at which some people will go to deny their roots.
Posted: 08/29/12, 05:17:18
The only mobile game I play is Words with Friends. I got tired of Angry Birds, and I feel Draw Something is a total waste of time. I'd rather play AGAINST someone than WITH someone, ya know?

Apple can eat a dick.
Posted: 08/29/12, 05:31:44
I do have to say, portable gaming really holds no appeal to me in and of itself. I can't think of a video game I'd choose to play on a handheld system instead of a TV. DS and 3DS get a pass because of the stylus/touchscreen, though it hasn't been as big a selling point on 3DS as it was on DS.
Posted: 08/29/12, 05:33:39
I don't think people really invest in $500+ tablet (or less on android) just to play angry birds... just saying. Yes, obviously there are games available for such platforms but that is just one of the multiple functionality tablets offer. It due to that versatility and functionality that results in the proliferation of such platforms, and if everyone tends to carry their tablet (or phone) wherever they go they end up playing something on the subway or what have you.

I agree that the rise of tablets and touch screen phones has resulted in a shrink in the market, especially for the brain age and similar demographic that help DS reach critical mass last gen. With that said, I firmly believe there is space in the market for tablets, 3DS and even the Vita (and I'm not just saying that because I wan't one). They offer fundamentally different experiences, each with their own strengths and weaknesses.

If I had a tablet I would probably game on it, no doubt, but with that said I will take a dedicated gaming handheld 9 times out of 10. The dedicated gaming consoles can do things tablets can't because of buttons and obviously 3DS or Vita can do everything your ipad or similar product can do.
Posted: 08/29/12, 05:38:52
I'm definitely all about dedicated handhelds. You guys already know that, though.

That said, I'm not against mobile phone gaming. They're nothing big, just really simple, really light time wasters that can be fun. Nothing more, nothing less. And for some people like @GelatinousEncore, that's enough. Because they either don't crave more than that, or they simply can't afford it. But bottom line, some of the games can be fun. And isn't that all that matters?

I'm more of a gamer, so I crave more than Cut the Rope and Words With Friends - though I really enjoy both of those. But if I'm waiting at the dentist's office, or the doctor's, or at my local mechanic's getting my car's oil changed or brakes re-aligned... I'm busting out my DS, not my phone. Those games are just more engaging to me. And thanks to how Nintendo designed the system, when I need to stop playing, I just snap the system shut, and Sleep Mode automatically kicks in. It's the perfect pick-up-and-play system, and the games are awesome on it. The games on my phone are a joke in comparison. But that's the thing; they really can't be compared. Because they are meant to cater to different audiences. They're good for different things. And I think they can absolutely happily co-exist. No question.

But those damn phones better know their place.

As for the bonus question: eh. The media will just "cheerlead" whatever's most popular at the moment. Remember when they "ooh'd" and "ahh'd" over the DS last gen? That's all that's happening. Nothing to see here, move along.
Posted: 08/29/12, 06:19:51

I haven't played it but I just watched a video. Seems like there's lots of customization. That's a type of gameplay. Gameplay doesn't have to be challenging. And a lot more gameplay than War.


I think Gelatinous is speaking for himself and others who feel the same way, not saying that there's no point for those who disagree.
Posted: 08/29/12, 06:20:51

He did claim handhelds had no place in the industry anymore.

As for customization, is decorating a cake gameplay? That's about the level of customization we're talking about here. It's purely cosmetic. It's not a game, it's a skinner box.
Posted: 08/29/12, 06:26:45
He clearly isn't just talking about himself and others though, he is talking about a serious issue with the future of the market for dedicated handhelds. And I really just don't see that happening. It was supposed to happen this generation and when 3DS started of slow everyone was quick to jump on the "handhelds are dying" bandwagon but then they dropped the price to a decent amount, Mario Kart 7 and 3D Land came out and sold millions of 3DS, and that kind of talk makes no sense anymore. I guess we are supposed to sit around and wait for the magical time when all of the millions upon millions who already have iPhones will decide to abandon handheld gaming platforms like they could already easily be doing?

The other part of this equation that people are ignoring is that Nintendo has built a market for themselves in the handheld arena and people know them as the best handheld developer, period. And they sell millions. This is one thing the iPhone doesn't have and won't anytime soon... Nintendo games. We're supposed to believe that no one cares about the name brand with handheld gaming anymore because they can get iPhone games for 99 cents, but again... Mario Kart 7 and 3D Land kind of shut down that way of thinking hard.
Posted: 08/29/12, 06:27:36

Yup. Nintendo will always be safe thanks to Mario.

And Pikachu.
Posted: 08/29/12, 06:32:38

Sure. For example, lots of children games across many platforms have that kind of customization. They are games. Over 99% of the world when asked what they are would say "video games". I've played one for Wii where the entire game is customizing your outfit. It's a game. This may come as a surprise to you, but you're not the arbiter of what is a game or not.

See the title?
Posted: 08/29/12, 06:37:13  - Edited by 
 on: 08/29/12, 06:40:43
Yeah, you can play a certain number of FB YDKJ games a day, but you have to pay to play more. They also have other "lifelines" and such you can purchase. It's too bad because the core game is amazing, and Cookie Masterson always makes me laugh.
Posted: 08/29/12, 06:38:09
I prefer most games on devices with buttons, obviously, but I own a tablet and smartphone, and I do play games on them... pretty casually, with the exception on Pinball Arcade. It works great with a touchscreen.

I am also really digging The Organ Trail right now... it is basically Apple II Oregon Trail, but you are trying to survive the zombie apocalypse.
Posted: 08/29/12, 06:56:18

I can't really make heads or tails of your post. Many games have that kind of customization, sure. The games themselves aren't that customization. What's that Wii game you allude to? You forgot to mention what it is.

I don't see why it's so impossible to imagine that there could be out there an app that looks like a game and isn't one. We've got movies that look like documentaries but aren't, we've got biographies that aren't true or that aren't even about real people, we've got beds that look like cars, etc. We can have things that look like games but do not have the elements necessary for it to be a game.
Posted: 08/29/12, 06:56:53
I loved Sword & Sworcery.
Posted: 08/29/12, 06:59:07
I have yet to play a single game on my ipad. And I don't have a smartphone. My wife has iphone but again, no games are ever played on it.
Posted: 08/29/12, 07:16:39
I've been a regular user of iPods for quite a while now, and when they finally introduced the iPod touch, I got one to try the games that seemed to be taking off without the need to upgrade to an iPhone. One of the first games I came across was the tower defense game, Fieldrunners, and absolutely loved it. I then went through a very brief period when I picked up many popular games. I played them for a bit, and then just stopped. I lost almost complete interest in any of them. My daughter likes messing with them, and my wife will play Fruit Ninja on the iPad a bit, but they're little more than a distraction. Asynchronous gaming seems fun enough, but with wifi only, it kinda limits the appeal to only at home play. And only my daughter plays those anyway. 3DS/DS all the way for me!
Posted: 08/29/12, 07:17:13
Dedicated handhelds all the way.

I own an elcheapo tracphone and I pay $10 a month to use it. I will never own any of those stupid smartphones. They are a waste of money. Sorry, not to offend anyone, but there are alot of morons that just have to own their smartphones...they think they are 'teh shitz' now. Bunch of fuckin losers.
Posted: 08/29/12, 09:02:28
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