Video Games that Miss the Multiplayer Mark

Love a game or hate it there is one thing in particular that brings every user back for more. The thrill of adventure.

Video games have multiplayer, anymore that’s almost a given. Multiplayer gives people the chance to go out and pit themselves against other people from around the world or it allows for a collaborative effort to achieve victory. But there are some games that either miss the mark, or totaly skip the online process altogether.

There are plenty of games that feature an elite group that is special in its power and abilities. These groups are revered through out the world that they inhabit and rightly so. In many instances they allow for tremendous character customaization that allow for you to literally recreate yourself in that world and develop and grow your powers until you become an unstopable force of nature.


Ghostbusters: The Video Game

Who doesn't get warm fuzzies from this?

Okay before we get hit with a teeming mass of nerd rage let me just say that I’ve been a Ghostbusters fan since the movie came out. The game was like a culmination of my entire childhood gloriously shooting forth like an overcharged proton stream of pleasure. My fiance (Meg) lives in constant fear of the morning that I awake and begin singing the Ghostbusters theme song becuase she know’s its a pretty fair bett I will be planted in front of a television slinging traps like Mel Gibson slings racial slurs.

Even the multiplayer is fantastic. There is just one tiny, ever so minute flaw. I wanted to be a Ghostbuster. Sure, the Rookie was interesting, looked like a nice guy, someone that I could relate to, go out, grab a slice and a brew with. But he wasn’t me. I like me. I think I would make a great Ghostbuster.

I sincerely hope they make a sequel and allow for character customization. I may very well need to change my shorts if I ever hear that news. My poor family would be inundated with photos of me when I brought down a most wanted ghost, or that time I managed to bag 20 ghosts without damaging any property. Sure…they would hate it, but I would be in pure nerd heaven. The only thing better would be Bill Murray sitting next to me giving me a high five and a one liner.

Dragon Age: Origins / Dragon Age: Origins – Awakening

Dragon Age: Origins was a fantastic concept, you join an army of Grey Wardens only to have it wiped out at the start of the game. Sadly, you are left with two in all of Ferelden to face the blight. But when the game is done what is left? The same story told with different choices and outcomes but no additionaly play through ever really felt like the first.

The blight wasn’t totally destroyed and neither were the Grey Wardens (as shown in Dragon Age: Origins – Awakening). I was so hoping for Dragon Age II to announce that once and it would allow for your Grey Warden to join the rest of his Bretheren to fight the blight in a whole new world, allowing for Grey Wardens from all over the world to work together.

Games such as Resistance 2 stood out with fantastic multiplayer that was objective / mission based and required players to work as a team to meet a common goal. It wasn’t just about killing everything that got in front of you, it was about using your skills and assets to work as a team to accomplish something.

Dragon Age could have beneifted greatly from this style of online play. I mean lets face it, I spent how much time building up my Grey Warden for what? To say, “Hey lookie there…I get to make a new one!”

I was part of an elite group of soldiers and never really got to see any others (save for 3) until I had to buy an expansion. It never quite felt like a true army.

However the inlcusion of some multiplayer where Grey Wardens from all over the land came together to stop a growing mass of Darkspawn before things really got out of hand would have made it even more personal and significantly upped the continued play of the game. It would have allowed for a Grey Warden to live on past the blight. Heck…even a little tenting could take place

Solid multiplayer would have taken a fantastic game and sent it shooting deep within the annals of gaming history with the brute force and all of the concern of a run away train. It could very well have set a benchmark for all games to come.

Any Star Wars Game

Star Wars - Old Republic Sith

That just looks like trouble

Thank friggin goodness for Old Republic. Yes, it doesn’t really do well in this setting becuase it is in fact an MMORPG but to date almost all single player Star Wars games miss the mark.

You have Jedi, you have Sith, you have Bounty Hunters, the Mandalorian, and more than we have words with. You have an entire galaxy populated with elite groups of warriors. Even as high level as Empire and Rebellion have great potential for online multiplayer perfection.

Again, the impending release of Star Wars: Old Repubilc should have every Start Wars fanboy gamer in absolute heaven.

Mass Effect

Similarly it would have been fun to be able to experience the full potential of a Spectre force. Though by nature Mass Effect’s Spectres were supposed to work alone it would have been fun to see a gathering of Spectres on the Citadel station hearing a call to arms from a near by system. A job that only a small band of Spectres can take on.

Since Mass Effect seemed to go a big rubbery one over using elevators as a loading screen you could even get a briefing on the mission while you rode the elevator to the Normandy.

Once on planet Spectres could start out together in an intial push until things quiet down a bit. Then each has their own misison to accomplish. As they split you still hear chatter and can see one another at various points. Once individual tasks were complete a full scale epic final push would take place. Completion would urn you pride, failure…mockery in Spectre History.

Transformers: War for Cybertron

While not my favorite game, I am just a sucker for Transformers. They are almost as fantastic to me as Ghostbusters.

Once I heard I could make my own Transformer for online play Meg heard me excited tell her that and began to worry that this would be just like Ghostbusters: The Video Game. “I’m not going to see you for a few weeks am I?”

While the customization wasn’t quite as impressive as I had hoped it was still customization. I mean it’s not like I can very well expect them to offer an vehicle line up on par with Gran Turismo to choose from. It’s good, it’s solid, and it works.

But where’s the fun? It’s fairly standard, online play. I’m not knockin’ it, but it just didn’t live up quite as much to it’s potential. It’s kinda sad to say but when it comes to online fun, LittleBig Planet can run circles around Transformers: War for Cybertron. That’s right when it comes to online play Sackboy can kick Prime right in the Autobot twig and giggle berries.

But why do some game companies not engage in multiplayer when there is so much possibility? Well there’s a mutlitude of reasons. Some being time, money, and desire to focus on the single player game at hand. Sometimes for the company, a full tilt boogey single player game is infinately more important to them than offers a rich and rewarding experience. But what then when the characters have a yerning to live on past their single player campaign. What then when we want to run the right past the finale and into continued glory?

Maybe someday all games will (by default) allow for a fantastic multiplayer experience or at a mimimum pull an Assassins Creed and say “While it wasn’t in the original game, here’s the good mutliplayer aspect.”

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Posted On
Jul 17, 2010
Posted By

How did Star Wars games missed the multiplayer mark when we had Star Wars Battlefront 1 and 2 and fans screaming at Lucasarts to release the 3rd sequel, the RTS game that a LOT of people still play, the freaking Jedi Knight series (Outcast II and Jedi Academy) multiplayer that reached above 100 million players and STILL people play it on the PC and can’t get enough of it . If you ask a star wars fan or almost any gamer they will tell you Battlefront and Jedi Academy’s multiplayer were one of the best experiences for Star wars and none SW fans to date.

Just had to point that out. You must be one of those persons that only played Force Unleashed and the SW gamecube games right?

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Posted On
Jul 21, 2010
Posted By

You’re right. I did only play SWTFU…and X-Wing, TIE Fighter, X-Wing Alliance, The Phantom Menace, Jedi Power Battles, Revenge of the Sith, KOTOR, KOTOR2, Star Wars and Empire for the NES, Super Star Wars, Rebel Assault, Rebel Assault II, Rogue Squadron, Starfighter, Dark Forces, Dark Forces II, Battlefront, and Battlefront II. Never owned a GameCube though. You know what always struck me about any multiplayer star wars game? It was the same as every other multiplayer out there. It wasn’t Star Wars multiplayer, it was multiplayer with Star Wars.

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Posted On
Aug 06, 2010
Posted By
Yuki Berdine

I agree with the comments above that a fully rounded character is always a better character, no matter what the gender. With a complete, formed personality, everything considered, anyone can relate to them.

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Posted On
Aug 07, 2010
Posted By
Nicola Munteanu

I think Starcraft 2 is just a over hooked version 1. What is the fun in playing the game contrary a mob of stubbon players who go about like its the termination of the world when you lose?
SC2 Sucks. Playing online is gay if you lose. Too many queers can’t handle losing a game once in a often as it hurts their “so called stat” I’d rather play comand and conquer three as its more team building gratification.

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Posted On
Sep 21, 2010
Posted By
Animation Champ

I wish I had gotten to go to a Star Wars exhibition when I was younger. Learning to be a Jedi would happen to be the best part.

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