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What's your opinion on User Generated Content?


Honor_Hand

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Greetings.

 

Since I started to play ModNation Racers recently, I thought this would be a good question to post over and discuss with the community. When I think of User Generated Content in video games, I think on those games that allow a great deal of freedom in creating, customizing and sharing stuff that is inherently related to that game. Said stuff could be levels, vehicles, tracks, decals, puzzles, stages, etc., etc., etc. The most important thing here is that the content has to be produced by the end user, in this case, the player.

 

b_lbp.jpg

 

A few questions to talk about:

 

  • What's your opinion on this particular features in games?
  • Do you use it and let your creativity go wild or you don't have time to bother?
  • Do you give a look at the creations made by other end users or do you feel satisfied with the content already provided by the developers?
  • Do you think providing these editing tools affect the quality of the main game in any way, shape or form?
  • Would you rather have a developer strip a game franchise of that feature in order to make it focus more on the actual design and mechanics of the game itself or you feel that the editing tools provided with the game are what make the game so unique? (At least for the games that rely heavily on this like the LittleBigPlanet series or ModNation Racers)
  • Let us know what are your favorite games that have this particular feature and why do you like them.

 

Here's a list of games that feature User Generated Content in case you need a memory jog. You can check here or here. 

 

As always, I'll be providing my opinion later down the thread. ?

Edited by Honor_Hand
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There's no downside to it. Allowing users to create their own content within a game simply allows creative types to try their hand at whatever tools are provided. Obviously, developers shouldn't neglect their own designs and make sure that their own content in the base game is up to par, but allowing user generated content is just a good idea all around. It's a fantastic practice that more developers should implement into their games.

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UGC is much better implemented in Steam imo via the workshop. There are hundreds of popular titles that you can get so much more out of when the developers allow workshop content. And as it's completely optional, there's no downside that I can think of other than potentially corrupting your save when an official update patch gets released. Content creators are typically very good at updating their creations to work with the latest patches though, so this is rarely a problem.

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I've rarely run into good User Created Content in games. Most of the time it's either ridiculously hard nonsense, auto-levels, or levels created just to make getting trophies easier. None of the three have ever had all that much value to me.

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Sometimes it can be done right, sometimes it's complete crap. It's kind of hard to make a definitive answer. Something like Mario Maker hit it out of the park while something like Infamous 2, it was pretty poorly executed.

 

If done right, it can be great and a ton of fun... But those have been few and far between for me.

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I'm definitly a fan of it. It helps to lengthen the amount of time I would spend on a game. I don't really make stuff though since I'm not the most creative person in that aspect. One example where I love user generated content is The Sims 4. People share their own lots and Sims on the online gallery and there's a ton of mods which really add to the experience for me personally.

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I had completely forgotten about this thread. My apologies. :facepalm:

 

I do like the purpose of this feature and I think it gives room to some amazing and creative designs on the end user side. However, as a feature for me to use I sadly have to skip it completely for 2 reasons. First and foremost, I'm not a creative type-of-guy and second, I really don't have time to sink into it. I have very limited time to play nowadays and I'd rather play a game that is finished than spend time creating content for it.

 

In regards to whether if I feel satisfied or not with the content already provided by the developers or not, I guess it would depend on the game itself and the quality of what is provided in it. For example, inFamous 2 main campaign is pretty good and there is really no need to go and see the mostly poor user-generated content that is lying around. LittleBigPlanet on the other side feels extremely short even as a platformer so checking for good highly-rated and downloaded stages is the way to go if you want to get more enjoyment out of the game. ModNation Racers, which I'm playing right now, feels 50/50. It'd been nice if the developers included more tracks from the get-go and what I have seen online feels alright but I haven't seen anything particularly impressive.

 

I do think these tools affect the quality of the gameplay in some way. Of course, it'd depend on how the developers optimize their games and whatnot but the platform on LittleBigPlanet does not feel as tight and responsive a said any 2D Mario game. Surely this is subjective but I find jumping in LBP extremely too floaty for my taste and the depth changing mechanic on the stages does give room for some unexpected deaths. ModNation racers while it plays superb, cannot shake this generic feel on the default tracks that come with the game. There are only 4 themes for the stages and it only takes a couple of hours before all tracks start to look the same.

 

About ripping this feature of those game franchises, that's something that would depend on what the developers want to do with their games. While I do think that could help to give a massive boost in gameplay quality and I also feel that would strip the franchise of its identity.

 

I didn't want to bring mods into the equation seeing as they are more prevalent on the PC side of gaming than on consoles but I guess they can be considered as User-Generated content as well. Mods vary a lot and they can help to completely revamp the story and gameplay of a base game to just providing alternate color skins. I'd say there are some mods out there that completely change the way how you remember some old games and completely revitalizes them in ways you wouldn't even imagine but there are is also some pretty pointless stuff out there.

 

All in all, they do help in bringing a lot of variety to the table. :)

Edited by Honor_Hand
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  • 2 weeks later...

Good for the most part but sometime games get it really wrong.  Far Cry 5 is an example of how not to do it though unless they have made changes since I did the arcade trophies.  So many really bad maps and horrible matchmaking bringing them up with no way to set up games with friends or randoms on maps you make yourself or like.  That being said it was the least of the problems with that horrible arcade experience. 

 

Looking forward to Dreams.

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