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iOS设备非游戏未来 仅适用于休闲游戏

发布时间:2011-11-21 18:24:08 Tags:,,

作者:Liam Butler

过去几年来,每次苹果发布iPhone销售数据,就会有某些人评论称iPhone/iPod Touch销量如何超越PSP和DS。Steve Jobs也曾暗示Phone比传统设备更适合玩游戏,iPhone是个畅销游戏设备。

假设Flymo推出嵌入FM收音机的割草机,这显然是款很棒的割草机。当年割草机的销量超过FM收音机的总销量。若Flymo总裁和新闻记者都宣称割草机是收音机的未来,那我们定会忍不住发笑。但Steve Jobs就是如此,发表类似言论,而大家则却对此熟视无睹。

iPhone、iPod Touch和iPad不是主流游戏设备。它们一个是智能手机,一个是MP3播放器,另一个则是平板电脑。但DS、PSP及其他游戏掌机都是基于游戏设计,游戏不是苹果设备的主要功能。

iPhone & iPod Touch

在接下来的内容中,我们将交叉讨论iPod Touch和iPhone。首先我得先说明我为什么没有谈及iPad,原因如下:

1)我没有iPad。

2)我不懂iPad。

它们是引人注目的平板设备,好比放大版iPhone。我假设它们所提供的游戏内容与iPhone类似。此时苹果控也许开始愤愤不平。

iPad-Joystick-for-Gamers(from gadgethings)

iPad-Joystick-for-Gamers(from gadgethings)

iOS设备非瞄准游戏而设计

首先先看看iPhone 4的设计构思。首先,扬声器是设备的基础要素。虽然这对手机而言是个好的设计选择,但并不适合宽频游戏设备。iPhone设备外形独特,我的手会很自然地想要在iPhone侧边停留,但就宽频游戏而言,这意味着我得消音。

这并不是说只要通过特别方式,我们就能够舒服地持久握住设备。iPhone设备边缘锐利,不适合进行10分钟以上的游戏体验。我因玩iPhone游戏而手部抽筋的次数实在数不胜数,蔓延至手臂的刺痛感觉也很不好受。

尖锐的矩形游戏控制器?自NES以来,就没有人制作这类设备。

iPhone的外围设备试图让玩家能够更舒服地操作iPhone,但它们看起来非常荒谬。你能想象自己将设备放入口袋四处走动?任何家伙都得保证自己不会进入操场,否则这就是个错误决定。

iPhone没有任何按键。这点最能说明它们不是游戏设备。

错误按键设置

任天堂设计DS时无疑有自己的想法。此设备给游戏增添新色彩,但只融入非常有限的触控装置。触屏能够进行的操作无非就是点击和扫射。

iPhone输入操作选择的局限性极大制约了该平台游戏题材的发展(游戏邦注:如第一人称射击游戏)。

《使命召唤:世界战争僵尸》是颇令人钦佩的尝试,它将这类题材引入此光滑小屏幕。虽然对此小设备而言,游戏的画面效果很好,但游戏玩法却非常令人失望。

由于缺乏模拟操纵杆和按键,屏幕会出现小型半透明圆圈,旨在估算操作结果。这样我的僵尸屠杀计划就会因发胖手指阻碍大半视野而受阻。因此在现实情况中,每次当我希望进行基本操作时,我都得好好揉揉自己的眼睛。

没有实际操作按键且追求准确度的游戏简直就是个梦魇。是的,光滑的屏幕看起无比夺目,的确让iPhone设备在众多手机中脱颖而出。但我的手指比抹上猪油的公路赛车还容易打滑。

不是所有iPhone游戏都如此糟糕,这我稍后会谈到。但缺乏允许按键操作的外围设备,iPhone游戏的可操作性会极大受限。

Wii设备

你也许会说,“iPhone设备不只是依靠触屏输入装置。它们还有游戏动作感应装置。”是的,的确如此。

在Wii和Playstation Move中,玩家除能够在独立屏幕上控制游戏进展外,还能够利用运动传感器。而传感器同屏幕融合起来完全是另一回事,这是iPhone所采用的模式。例如,当你需要转弯躲过iPhone赛车游戏中的岩石时,屏幕就会同你处在相切角度,你需要艰难地判断发生什么情况。这完全没有帮助。刀战游戏几乎缺乏可能性。

我无法想象若iPhone变成游戏的未来会是什么情况。未来家庭游戏掌机会将由40英寸触屏和运作传感器构成。我们通常将掌机揣在怀里,但未来我们需要减轻其重量,通过传感器移动角色。由于你的手忙于握住此庞然大物,你只好通过胸部触及屏幕。若未来出现这种情况,那我会选择逃离社会,出家当和尚。

iPhone优点

优秀iPhone作品是避开动作操作的内容;配合iPhone控制装置简单性的作品。

简单RTS风格游戏和益智游戏非常适合此平台。听闻有人推荐体验iPhone版《植物大战僵尸》,我因此进行尝试,结果完全融入其中。其控制装置比手柄或鼠标操作更符合直觉。我现已在这款精致应用中投入很多小时。

App Store排名前25的作品大多是简单而有趣的作品,如《涂鸦跳跃》、《愤怒的小鸟》和《涂鸦切割》。这归根于用户操作iPhone的方式。iPhone是移动设备,融入许多小部件、游戏和通讯录,用户可以在火车旅途的无聊时光访问这些内容,无需勉强同邻座交谈。

苹果的成功之处

就是App Store。我们怎么能够略过App Store?苹果商店的游戏推广方式非常特别,呈流线模式,非常流畅,最重要的是成本低。

App Store游戏并没有像XBLA或PSN平台那样要价10英镑,相反游戏通常只需20便士。最近我刚以59便士的价位分别买到《猴子岛 1》和《猴子岛 2》的特别版本;而在XBLA,这些内容需要花费800 MS积点。开发者通过低价定位,促使更多用户购买作品的尝试最终获得成效。

此机制令小型开发者从中受益。小型开发者因能够制作小型作品,以预算价格出售,而获得更多资金保障。Free Radical因放弃《时空分裂》转而制作《Haze》而遭遇挫折,因为《Haze》是款十足的垃圾作品。出现应用商店后,各公司就无需每次都推出髙预算巨作。相反他们可以选择制作若干小型游戏。App Store让开发者享有更多冒险自由,带来新游戏设计创新时代。

Ocarina of Time from zelda.wikia.com

Ocarina of Time from zelda.wikia.com

最重要的是,iPhone将原本不玩游戏的用户也带入游戏世界。当然坚持避开休闲玩家,宣称没玩过《Ocarina of Time》就等于白活也没有什么不好,但这种态度恐怕很难将我们变成朋友,是吧?

休闲游戏的未来

没有玩家在iPhone玩过《最终幻想 VII》这样的作品。需要投入40小时的沉浸性游戏不适合此平台,因为每次触动屏幕时,幻想就会破灭。更别提你因40小时iPhone游戏体验而患上的慢性手部痉挛。

iPhone和iPad不是游戏的未来。所有苹果设备都不能代表游戏的未来。但这些设备是休闲游戏的希望,此外,游戏控制台和手柄在此领域也有自己的发挥空间。(本文为游戏邦/gamerboom.com编译,拒绝任何不保留版权的转载,如需转载请联系:游戏邦

iPhone and iPad are Not the Future of Gaming

by Liam Butler

For the past few years, every time Apple have released their sales figures for the iPhone, some bright spark has commented on how iPhones/iPod Touches are outselling the PSP and the DS. The latest of these bright sparks was none other than Steve Jobs himself. The implication being that iPhones are better for gaming than traditional handhelds, and that the iPhone is a bestselling games device.

Honestly. The only thing more staggering than that man’s arrogance is just how much he resembles a testicle poking out of a turtleneck jumper.

Imagine if Flymo came out with a lawnmower that had an FM radio built in, and it was a damn good lawnmower. More of that lawnmower are sold that year than the combined sales of all FM radios. If the president of Flymo and a shitload of journalists all came out and said that lawnmowers are the future of radio, then we’d laugh. But Steve Jobs does just that, along with stupid articles like this , and nobody bats an eyelid.

The iPhone, the iPod Touch and the iPad are not primarily gaming devices. One is a smartphone, one is an MP3 player, and the other is, well, a thing. Whereas the DS, the PSP, and all other games consoles are built with gaming in mind from the beginning, gaming is not the primary function of Apple’s glossy wonders.

iShould Coco

I’ll assume that you won’t argue with me for lumping the iPod Touch and the iPhone together in the following piece. However, before I go any further, I must explain why I won’t be covering the iPad at any great length. There are two reasons:

1) I haven’t gone one.

2) I don’t understand them.

They’re ostentatious slabs, which just look like big iPhones. So, I’m going to assume that the gaming experience that they provide is very similar to the iPhone’s. Apple fanboys, you may begin spitting bile at me.

Not Designed for Gaming

Let’s take a look at the iPhone 4’s design. For starters, the speaker is at the base of the unit. Although this is a good design choice for a phone, it’s not so great for a widescreen gaming device. Because of the iPhone’s shape, my hands naturally want to rest on the iPhone’s sides, but with a widescreen game this means that I often muffle the sound.

Not that holding it in any particular way is comfortable for very long. The sharp edges of the phone aren’t very accommodating for gaming sessions longer than ten minutes. I’ve lost count of the hand cramps I’ve had from playing games on the iPhone, and that tingling sensation running down my arm can’t be good either…

A sharp, rectangular games controller? C’mon, Apple. Nobody’s done that since the NES.

I have found these peripherals, designed to make gripping the iPhone more comfortable for gamers, but they look ridiculous. Can you imagine trying to walk around with one of those in your pocket? Any lads would have to ensure they didn’t walk past a playground, or someone would get the wrong idea.

And iPhones don’t have any buttons. Surely that’s a big enough clue that they’re not gaming machines!

Pushing the Wrong Buttons

When Nintendo designed the DS, they were definitely on to something. It can add a new dimension to gaming, but solely having touch controls is very limiting. All you can do with a touchscreen is tap and swipe. Swipe and tap. Maybe even a cheeky swipe-tap.

Having such a limited set of input options will hinder a lot of genres on the iPhone. First-person shooters, for instance.

Call of Duty: World at War Zombies is an admirable effort to bring the genre to the small, glossy screen. Although the graphics are stunning for such a small device, the game-play is unbelievably frustrating.

Due to the lack of analogue sticks and buttons, little semi-translucent circles appear on screen to approximate their functions. So, my ability to dish out zombie carnage is hindered by the fact that my chubby fingers are blocking half of my field of vision. The equivalent of this in real life would be me needing to poke myself in the eyes every time I wished to perform a basic action.

With a game that requires precision, not having actual, tangible buttons is nightmarish. Yes, the glossy screen looks shiny and lovely, and it does a remarkable job of distinguishing the iPhone from the plebs’ phones, but my fingertips slipped around more than a rally car with lard for tyres.

Not all of the iPhone’s games are quite so bad, and I’ll come on to them later. But without some sort of peripheral to enable button input, the iPhone’s games will always be restricted in what they can do.

Wii Will Rock You

“Aha!” I hear you cry, “iPhones don’t just rely on touchscreen input. They also have motion sensing controls for games as well.” Yes, they do. Well done, have a cookie.

With the Wii and Playstation Move, you have the motion sensor in your hand while you control what happens on a separate screen. It’s another thing entirely when the sensor and the screen form the same unit, as is the case with the iPhone. If you find you have to swerve to dodge a rock in an iPhone driving game, for instance, the screen is now on an angle to you, and you’re struggling to see what’s going on. Not exactly helpful. Sword fighting games would be nigh-on impossible.

I dread to think what would happen if the iPhone really is the future of gaming. Future home games consoles would simply consist of 40-inch touch-screens with motion sensors. Whilst holding the console in your arms, you would have to shift its colossal weight in order to get the sensors to move your character. Because your hands are occupied with holding this monstrosity, you have to tap the screen by beating the unit against your chest. If this happens, I’m shunning society and joining a monastery.

What the iPhone Gets Right

The games that fare better are the ones that don’t place you right there in the middle of the action; the games that embrace the simplicity of the iPhone’s control system.

Simple RTS style games and puzzle games are at home on the platform. Since hearing a recommendation for the iPhone version of Plants Vs Zombies on Joypod, I gave it a go and am addicted. Here, the controls actually feel more intuitive than they would with a joypad or mouse. I’ve now racked up hours of play time on that beautiful little app.

If this article turns out to be shit, I’m blaming that game… and Joypod.

Most of the games in the App Store’s top 25 are simple and fun little items such as Doodle Jump, Angry Birds, and Slice It! That’s because of how the iPhone is used by people. It’s an on-the-go device, full of little gadgets, games, and phone contacts that you can bring up when you’re bored on the train and you can’t be bothered to talk to your neighbour.

What Apple Gets Right

The App Store. How could I not mention the App Store? It has such a unique approach to games distribution. It is streamlined, hassle-free and, most importantly, it’s cheap.

Instead of charging, say ten pounds for a game as happens on XBLA or PSN would, the App Store charges as little as 59p. Just this week I’ve bought the special editions of Monkey Island 1 and 2 for the bargain price of 59 pence each; on XBLA they cost 800 MS points. The gamble of charging less for games in the hope that more people buy them has really paid off.

A system like this helps smaller developers. By allowing them to make smaller games to sell at budget prices, they have a little more financial security. When Free Radical broke off from making Timesplitters to create Haze, the company had to fold because Haze was rubbish. With the app store, developers don’t have to have a big-budget hit every time. They can instead make several smaller games. With more freedom for developers to take risks, the App Store could lead to a new era of creativity in game design.

Best of all, the iPhone has got people playing games who otherwise wouldn’t. It’s all well and good being elitist dickheads who shun casual gamers, and go on about how they haven’t lived if they’ve not played Ocarina of Time but that sort of attitude isn’t going to make us any friends, is it?

None of this makes Steve Jobs any less of a prat, though. Just so we’re clear on that.

The Future of Casual Gaming

Nobody will ever play a game such as Final Fantasy VII on an iPhone. Immersive games that require 40 hours of game time aren’t suited to this platform because every time you have to touch the screen, the illusion is shattered. Not to mention the chronic hand cramps you would get from 40 hours of iPhone gaming.

The iPhone and the iPad (welcome back, iPad) are not THE future of gaming. No one innovation can be THE future of gaming. I can very well see these being the future of casual gaming, but I think there will always be a place for games consoles and their lovely joypads.(Source:spong


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