As with any medium or specialised field, the world of video games has created a vast list of jargon that may not mean much to people unacquainted with the medium and its making. Try describing the latest anime roguelike MOBA with turn-based SRPG trappings to non-gamers and you'll be met with blank faces.
Video game enthusiasts — as with fans in any field — can often be linguistic sticklers when it comes to definitions. However, with the medium having grown to include such a broad range of genres, experiences and fans, ubiquitous language can get caught in a no-man's land between being specific enough for die-hard fans and functioning as useful chunks of terminology for non-experts. For some people, getting wound up by this lack of specificity is a full-time job.
We've taken a breezy look at how you pronounce certain gaming-related words before, and we thought it would be fun to look at a handful of gaming terminology that has been known to trigger forum wars in the past (and the present). The words below can mean something very particular to one person and something entirely different to another; laser-specific in one sense, or vague enough to be meaningless, depending who you ask.
So, let's take a lighthearted (repeat: lighthearted!) look at a few of the terms guaranteed to rile up somebody, somewhere — maybe even you (or us)...
"video game" or "videogame"?
Okay, let's start with probably the oldest, biggest one. For decades, some people have chosen to compound the words as 'videogame'. For many, this is grammatical blasphemy of the highest degree. For others, it signifies the birth of a specific and new interactive creation unlike any form of play that's come before. Some never really thought about it, couldn't give a monkeys, or just missed hitting the space bar when vomiting out their forum rant. And others still only ever write it as 'vidyagames'.
So what's the problem?
Well, back in the olden days, the games you played on your computer weren't called 'computergames', were they? Why would 'videogames' be different? The same goes for 'boardgames', 'ballgames', 'racketgames'...
No. Ball games. Computer games. Video games. Still, the debate goes on. Let us know your thoughts in the poll below.
Popularised (though not coined by) Jeremy Parish, this portmanteau is very handy shorthand for a game with a large map containing rooms and areas that gradually unlock and are revisited as the player gains new abilities, equipment and items.
So what's the problem?
The Metroidvania genre has grown so large and influential that elements turn up all over the place these days. The tag has become increasingly vague, to the point that you may as well just call them all platformers, no?
Well, no. Say the word 'Metroidvania' and at the very least you know the ballpark you're in, even if the game itself is up for debate. It's still useful and the term's proliferation means that it'll continue to wind people up for a long while yet. Much like the next term...
Everything's a roguelike these days, amirite? Named after the 1980 game Rogue, this contentious noun is used to describe a game that shares features with the aforementioned text-based dungeon crawler. These can include permadeath, procedural level generation and turn-based elements, and the varying degrees to which a game resembles Rogue results in a gamut of terms ranging from 'pure roguelikes' to 'rogue-lites', 'roguelike-likes' and downwards into a spiral of descriptors so granular that the will to live drains from you.
So what's the problem?
Overuse is the first one. Run-based games of this ilk have been in vogue for years now, and it feels like 50% of all press releases include the word 'roguelike'.
Secondly, the word 'roguelike' turns off large numbers of prospective players. For some, it signifies 'no saves' and 'procedural generation' when they'd rather explore bespoke, hand-designed levels in a more stress-free environment. As handy as the term is, any mention of Rogue has become an alarm bell for some, which is unfortunate because the spectrum of games it's applied to is very broad. You're highly unlikely to hate all games in this category, and it's a real shame that people are missing out on gaming gems because of a buzzword.
Coined by game designer Clint Hocking in a 2007 blog post on the subject of BioShock, this neat term is used to describe a scenario when a game's systems and mechanics (the ludic 'play' elements - from the Latin 'ludus') encourage behaviour that contradicts the nature of its characters or the story being told.
One frequently cited example is the fact that roguish (but not roguelike) Nathan Drake is, in fact, a genocidal criminal given the piles of corpses left in his wake. The narrative frames him as likeable, sympathetic guy while the gameplay promotes offing dudes by the dozen. In a game with a popcorn-style, Indiana Jones vibe, it's more humorous than distracting. In other games, that tension between story and gameplay can push you out of the experience; 'Ludonarrative dissonance' is an economic way to describe that complex idea.
So what's the problem?
Embarrassment, perhaps? It's an unashamedly academic term and sticks out like a sore thumb when dropped into casual conversation: when Clint Hocking uses 'ludonarrative dissonance' in an essay, he sounds like a total boss; when you use it while chatting with your pals down the pub, you sound like a total asset. Hocking is a game designer of renown, and his first name is Clint — Clint! Your first name is not Clint*, ergo you cannot pull off 'ludonarrative dissonance' whatever the context.
Jokes aside, there's a large section of the video gaming audience actively opposed to viewing them as high art or worthy of deep academic analysis. Video games are just about fun right? Why do you have to pollute my hobby with all your highfalutin nonsense!?
While we can sympathise to a point, video games have the same potential as any creative form of expression. They can be anything from trashy time sinks to treatises tackling the weightiest, worthiest subjects — and sometimes many things simultaneously.
And just like literature or cinema or a ten-part Netflix series, tough subjects can be addressed with a deft, delicate touch or wielded with all the subtlety of a battle axe to the temple. Games continue to grow more sophisticated all the time, as does the language to discuss them.
*apart from you, Clint. How you doing?
The term that applies when players access a game for free and publishers generate revenue through adverts and/or microtransactions, 'F2P' (or Free-To-Play / Free-To-Start) started as a 'freemium' business model for mobile games and quickly ballooned to include some of the biggest console video games in the world.
So what's the problem?
There's nothing specifically wrong with the term itself; it just carries negative connotations for traditional console gamers who are used to paying money upfront and not having their in-game experience disturbed with ads and paid upgrade paths. Backlashes against intrusive in-game monetisation for titles that are already full-price purchases are arguably justified when companies try to have it both ways (we're looking at you, EA), but most opposition to F2P seems to come from the model's origins and popularity in the mobile sector.
This was a very fun article. Always thought people who wrote videogames made a typo...
We could add rerelease/remaster/remake in that article, those words have different meaning even between video game companies...
Ooooooh boy... I will sit this one out... Haha.
nice Advance Wars bait
Never heard anyone use this term until now.
Video game. Two words.
I may say "beat" or "finished" but I reserve "completed" for games that I 100%.
I've always felt "gamer" is a pretty silly label so I avoid using it.
If it’s a slow news day, why not talk about the physical release of Power Rangers Battle for the Grid dropping next month!
Very excited to get my hands on a good fighter and I’ve heard nothing but positive about it over the year and with the tweaks they’ve made!
Theres nothing wrong with the term walking simulator, one of my favourite horror games of the last decade is essentially one of them
@TimboSlice Never understood why people think having fun pieces necessarily mean "slow news day" like it could never be an editorial choice to have fun.
But yeah we could add that to the list of video game vocab sure to spark forum wars: "slow news day"
For the completing thing, "beat" typically is used for a game that's challenging a la Mario or SMT, while "finished" might be more used for something like Night In The Woods or Ace Attorney where it's more of an experience you go through. And "completed" typically means that I'm not going to go back to that save file ever again, having finished all the objectives I wanted to (typically 100%ing it, but not always). It's quite common for me to say I finally beat something (say, Super Mario Odyssey), and still be playing it for awhile longer, while finished means well... finished.
Basically, they mean three different things.
LUDONARRATIVE DISSONANCE?!?! That’s the strangest thing I’ve heard in any context, what a pretentious term! I think many of the other picks are coming from convenience and different vernaculars. “Beat” vs “ finished” is kinda moot, doesn’t matter. But gamer? Yeah, there’s a lot of negative connotation attached to that word, as most gamers tend to be huge jerk-balls online. People who happen to play video games also happen to be pretty cool, though lol
Zelda is not an rpg. RPGs generally fall under tabletop rpg trappings and rules. Zelda is in the adventure genre. You don’t level up (upgrading equipment is not the same as your overall level). Skyrim however is a mix of both rpg and adventure (so maybe call it and fallout adventure RPGs).
Please don't use Advance Wars pictures for articles unless we are actually getting another AW. My heart can't take it.
Also, Metroidvania, rogue-like, and Souls-like combat need to die fiery deaths.
Liars. I know all of you guys are gamer weebs if your on this site. And Eeeew no is winning. The nerve of some people.
@GameOtaku Everything is an RPG these days. Oh! It has experience points! It’s an RPG!
Video games, finished it, core gamer.
In my opinion, People who call themselves “Gamers” need to get a life. Gaming is a hobby, not a lifestyle.
If I "beat" a game I reached the ending/credits/etc. If I "finished" a game it usually implies that I beat it and maybe played a bit more but I'm done playing it for now. I never say I "completed" a game but will sometimes say I "100%'d" a game if I did just that.
I've always said I've cleared a game if I've beaten the main story/got to the credits and completed if I 100% it.
According to that description, so many things could be labeled a "metroidvania." assassin's creed, skyrim, resident evil, etc. Just say it's like 2d metroid OR 2d castlevania.
I don’t say gamer as much as I say game player but that arguably sounds just as silly.
I was expecting the article to be about things like how, over a decade later, people still call Advance Wars "Advanced Wars"
I use that Hank Hill term "Vidya games."
Coming from the Netherlands, writing 'videogames' is a language thing to me. It has always looked natural to me and I therefore prefer it.
I have apathy with most of what has been written though it was all interesting. I think the rogue-like issue is the main one as it can turn ppl off playing some really good games majorly. Also, I don't think walking simulator makes sense. Then again, I'm not sure how to categorise those games. I would have thought completing a game would mean it's 100% completed. Whereas beating a game is the A to B game experience in getting to that final boss and beating it. Finishing is beating the final boss and having a fair wack at the aspects that can lead you up to 100% completion but necessarily getting there.
I still say that I "beat" a game, or boss.
Hell, I still say that I "die" when I lose at Tetris.
I'm surprised there's so few comments on this after a whole hour.
Objectively, I think the game being 'beaten' harks back to the 80s and early 90s when games were admittedly much harder to complete and there was very few options to find out how to get past that one boss, or what to do next. Therefore, it was a challenge to overcome. The gamers who have the easier, albeit longer, games no longer have such a high challenge and so can easily 'finish' the game if they get to see the end credits, but will only truly 'complete' the game if they do everything else.
And now I'm gonna put my head on the chopping board here, but as for being a gamer, I'd rather say no. I enjoy video games and videogames. But if I turn round and say I only play nintendo, some have actually said to me that I'm not a gamer because I don't play GTA or FPS and the like. And I would tell some in my community I play video games and they immediately think I'm into bloody violence and gore. So I've chosen to avoid that term altogether.
Realistically, people need to just chill out. It's not worth getting angry and into a heated debate over. Oh, you don't suppose the violence in videogames has anything to do with that, do you?
Eww gamers. Ewwwwww. Such negative connotations from a seemingly innocuous word. I hate Souls-like personally. It’s a word used by games to bandwagon and curry favour with those games’ fans.
Soulslike when describing a hard 2d game....
Just think about all the retro hard games from the 80s and 90s that came before 🙄
And I'll add Hashtag when it's clearly the Pound sign
It's Vidja gaymz.
How about "fan service"? Always weird to me when people use that in a negative light when we're always demanding these gaming companies to listen its fans.
I think the completion verb depends on the genre. I used to use “beat” a lot in NES and SNES days when games were made more to stop you from completing them through challenge. Today I would say I beat a game if it was roguelike or some other platformer but the walking simulators, Metroidvanias, and CJRPGs I would say I finished. Never “one hundred percented it.”
Not a video game, it’s a computer game.
If you finish a game means you finished not beat, completed is when you 100% finish it
Wow, I’m shocked by hatred for the term gamer. I wear my heart on my sleeve. I don’t know a single person who reads gaming websites, let alone comment on them, that I wouldn’t consider a gamer. If someone doesn’t call me a nerd a least once a day something is wrong my life.
I’m also a hiker, a painter, a builder and a drinker.
Each to their own though, you do you.
Great article! Regarding the discourse surrounding "beat" vs "finished" vs "completed," I think the system used by The Completionist makes most intuitive sense, at least to me. Finishing a game means you've beaten the main story / you've reached the point where the end credits roll. Completing a game means achieving every objective in the game and unlocking all rewards. And beat = finish.
Things like beat, finish and complete are totally interchangeable to me and will not lose sleep over that one.
As for video games. 2 words for me. I enjoy all sorts of games. Board, table top and video. So for me, the most important word is game and video is an adjective. Some folk might not have as wide an interest. That's fine.
And the phrase gamer can do one. If anyone that plays a game irrespective of what, why, how, who or where...then it doesn't mean anything. May as well call us all breathers.
Stop defending F2P and acting like those of us who dislike it are just a bunch of console elitists. That's a load of crap.
It's not simply the mobile origins of the style.
Pay to win mechanics,
Microtransactions replacing traditional secrets and unlockables.
Microtransactions replacing traditional leveling and game progress.
Heavy marketing at children who don't yet know the value of a dollar.
Gambling and loot box mechanics.
F2P games where players have spent literally thousands of dollars and hours of play, and not unlocked everything.
These are just a few prominent issues with the model. Don't say there is "no problem" with it past its mobile origin.
A video is the broadcasting of recorded content. A video game would be like those old laserdisc or fmv games. But a videogame is what we know and love.
This was a cute article. I was expecting more nit-picky stuff (I personally am disgusted at the "special usage" of "second-party developer" for video games) ... but these are fundamental, existential ideas. Well done!
@WillQuan Cleared would also be the term i would use if i got to the ending but didn't 100% complete game.
Apparently 18% of Nintendolife users are monsters who don't use spacing.
I rarely finish anything, but I am often done with games.
@Lindhardt my browser highlights "videogame" as a typographical error. It's video game. 18% of users who took the poll are wrong!
Roguelike or roguelite... they both disgust me. That said, I was genuinely surprised by how much I enjoy Dead Cells, so I can't write off the genre completely.
I've grown attached to the term Metroidvania. Technically, I think the term should be "Metroid-style" or "exploration platformer" or something. Castlevania ripped off Metroid's formula ELEVEN YEARS LATER. That hardly makes Castlevania a pioneer in the genre. But whatever.
I was typing a post about how video games are video games not one word. But I can’t because it keeps autocorrecting to two words. Proof that it is not one word.
I agree about Metroidvania--it's always bugged me! (although technically, you could argue that Castlevania aped Metroid with CV2: Simon's Quest, but I think most people are using the term to refer to games more like Super Metroid and SotN).
Originally, "Metroid-vania" was used to describe the Castlevania games that PLAYED like Metroids (SotN, the GBA ones, etc), and then it just kinda morphed into a genre label with all the indies being of that genre.
I much prefer the term "Metroid-like." The credit goes to the discoverer!
"On my business card, I am a corporate president. In my mind, I am a game developer. But in my heart, I am a gamer."
"Beat / Finished / Completed" is pretty clearly defined in my book:
Beat: See the ending, simple as that.
Finished: Done everything major: All quests, stories, modes etc.
Completed: Done everything: Collectibles, journal entries, achievements, all the small nitty-gritties.
Can’t believe “shmup” isn’t here. Stupidest term ever coined. They are and always have been shooters. Doesn’t matter that FPS have become more popular. The term “shoot-em-up” doesn’t even make sense for this genre, invoking more of an action movie vibe than ships shooting down enemies.
Another problem with "gamer" is, of course, gamergate. Those hateful, misogynist bigots ruined it for everyone.
calling shmups and fighting games "shooters" and "beat-em-ups" has always felt like a very distinctly european thing to me, especially the latter
I might call myself a gamer just because I've played video games as long as I remember - but I agree it's become a bit negatively associated, BUT if I ever call myself a 'serious gamer' like a certain gentleman on a recent YouTube video - then I intend to find a way to literally kick my own arse repeatedly and invite everyone else to join in.
Re. Rogue-like and Metroidvania - they function to give an idea of the type of game, so I have no issue with them - in fact I like those terms.
What I do hate is the open use of the word platformer for vastly different game-types such as run-and-gunners, metroidvanias, puzzle platformers etc....
Whereas a wide array of games do HAVE platforms in them - and you may even jump on them, to me 'platformer' should be synonymous with action-platformer and mean stuff like SMB, DC Country, Rayman and their 3D equivalents like A Hat in Time, Poi, Spyro etc...
So yeah, it rubs me up the wrong way when people call stuff like Hollow Knight, Gunstar Heroes or Castlevania a platformer since they already have specific genres themselves and are nothing like Super Mario, Kirby and so on.
So that's my beef
i call games that i play on a spectrum, commadore 64, or switch computer games and i call large cabinet games arcade games. and i still call myself a gamer.
The problem is that you don't just use an Advance Wars image. Not when I'm just finishing up with Wargroove which I greatly enjoyed, but I want classic Andy, Samy, and Max back.
I think RPG is about the worst term in gaming - since all games are about playing a role. That's the point of games - to be a space fighter, a top driver, a daring adventurer etc...
What we call RPGs, JRPGs or turn-based RPG's should be spelt out as 'turn-based combat adventure' games - so that 25% of the population will instantly know to avoid them like the plague and 'random-encounter battle-adventures' so another 50% of the population can do the same
Not my favourite genre if you can't tell - but seriously RPG is such a BS term.
"ludonarrative dissonance" - I had never seen this term before this article.
Rogue-like and f2p automatically kill interest for me, just because of the associations with them.
Beat, finished or completed.....I used to say beat, back in the day. Games were pretty definitive in that you had a challenge to overcome and beat the game. Nowadays though, it's not anywhere near that clear cut. Games have optional side quests, optional DLC, post game content and so on. So, "I've finished" is more a fitting saying now, since that's when I'm done with it, not necessarily doing all optional/post end content.
"Gamer" has lost pretty well all meaning. You have people playing candy crush or whatever calling themselves 'gamers' and I'm fairly certain these people are also used in some statistics on gaming. And, in whats probably unpopular, I consider 'gamers' who do nothing but Fortnite to be in that same crowd. Yes, I know they are technically playing games.
I'm guilty of being wound-up by "metroidvania" and "rougelike" for the reasons mentioned in the article already. For me, they've simply become meaningless buzzwords. The latter especially because I've found that people call everything a rougelike even if it has nothing much to do with the genre. For me, the term invokes the mental image of games in the vein of Shiren the Wanderer, so when I see anything with any semblance of randomness being called that, I do admittedly get annoyed. For example I don't really see Darkest Dungeon as a rougelike, but people insist that's what it is. For metroidvania I'm finding it's often used a catch-all phrase for anything the slightest open game play. Ducktales has been called a metroidvania before for example and I can't even begin to fathom how anyone can see that as being remotely like Metroid, but I digress.
See, you've gone and wound me up now! Well played, Nintendolife.
This article gave me a chuckle @dartmonkey , great work!
I say all 3 for when I finish/beat/complete a game, I also say 100% if I've done just that or specify just the campaign if it's a game known for its multiplayer.
Funny anecdote: a woman once asked me if I was a gamer but I misheard her and thought she was asking me if I was a gay man which resulted in a funny conversation, you probably had to be there 😅
Beat or finished for me comes down to sometimes how I'm feeling and sometimes down to what the end of the game required, or even how I feel about it.
Completed is 100%. I don't make it to that as much as I like.
As an LGBT+ member, one word I absolutely abhor (written, of course) is ‘gaymer’. I was a gamer before I came out, I’m still a gamer. I don’t need an extra effing letter. No judgement on the people that use it, but makes me cringe when I see it.
I beat a game it if it's like Mario where there's mostly action and a big boss battle at the end, and I finish it if it's a calmer or more story-driven game like Professor Layton.
Just to extend the concept a bit I'd like the term troll to revert to its original definition: someone purposely stirring ***** to get a reaction.
It does not mean someone who merely disagrees with you.
It is VIDEO GAME. Also hate the word gamer because it’s such a stereo type. Kids who play with toys don’t get called toyers do they? People who play board games don’t get called board gamers. So why do people who play VIDEO GAMES get called gamers?
I've seen a lot of debate on the word "handheld," like "a system is not truly 'handheld' unless it fits in your pocket." Also the size of said "pocket" is often debated. I have no problems putting my DS or 3DS (even XL) system in my jeans pocket, but I've seen some complain that even the tiny DS Lite "won't fit."
@technotreegrass Probably because pockets are getting smaller even though the phones are getting bigger.
@bobzbulder True. I don't like certain brands of pants because of the tiny pockets and I never purchase them. Oddly enough, those who complain that the DS and 3DS systems aren't tiny enough for them never mention what kind of phone they own or state their opinions on the growing size of phones. Even budget phones are getting to be quite big.
@KryptoniteKrunch It depends on how that fanservice is used. Plenty of fanservice is poorly implemented or used as a cheap way of getting praise from the player. In Star Wars, Boba Fett was a popular character for Episode VI; if he'd flown out of the Sarlacc, had a change of heart to join the Rebels, and assassinated Emperor Palpatine in a glorious fashion... that would purely be fanservice, far worse than letting the main characters deal with the Emperor like in the final film.
That's an extreme example, sure. But there's a fine line between giving the audience some love and pandering for easy credit.
Is it Ma-rio or Mar-io??
That thumbnail and the fact it is the prominent article when coming onto the site is very ‘troll’ behaviour.
I got super excited for the briefest of moments.
"It doesn't help that the word is used to advertise products which are often garish or needlessly adorned with vents, neon trim and the like. Not always, of course, but generally the 'gamer' version of anything will have gaudy LEDs embedded somewhere and an edgy name: 'X-TREME' or something with numbers and a 'Z' in it."
I wonder if that's a leftover of pretty much all 90s toys being like that.
Personally I thought "beating" a game meant finishing the main mode/campaign or doing whatever triggers the credits, and "completing" meant doing all the extra stuff as well, like optional bosses (but not necessarily things you need to 100% the game like all collectibles or achievements)
Think of a game that defined a genre.
This was a pretty fun article. The "beat" / "finish" / "complete" one is especially tricky... as a kid I'm sure I said I "beat" games, but now that I have limited free time / patience, it's more like I "finished" a game (or maybe "completed")... and if I REALLY finished it then I say I "finished it 100%" or "100%ed" it, which makes me feel dirty. Fortunately I only have 2~3 friends that I see regularly where we might talk about these things in person.
I'd say I've beaten Mario 64 when I defeat bowser. I wouldn't say I've completed it till I get all the stars.
I use the term "gamer," because I'm helping to rescue the term from its gambling connotation. Games (and not just the video kind) are easily my favorite form of entertainment, and there are tons of them out there that don't involve wagering money, so I don't appreciate how the term used to be connected mainly to such a vice.
@NoWayOut I agree. There should be such a distinction between the two terms (with "finished" meaning the same thing as "completed)."
I do think that "video games" should exclusively be a two word term...in English. However, my old Spanish class claims that the Spanish term (videojuegas) is only one word.
@Apportal Yeah, so? There's nothing wrong with using a noun form to denote someone's favorite hobbies. You can also be a reader, a cinema connoisseur, a knitter, an amateur cook, a scholar, an amateur basketball player, a dancer, a handy(wo)man, or whatever else you like to do in your free time.
@noobish_hat That's because they're different genres (plus the former were always called fighting games in North America), so it never made sense to call something like "Streets of Rage" as a sub-genre to something like "Street Fighter." If you want to use "beat 'em ups" as the term for 1-on-1 fighting games, then you need a completely different term for the other kind of games.
@Heavyarms55 I'm perfectly fine with free-to-play games like "Pokémon Shuffle" where I don't have to pay a dime to eventually complete it while others finance the game by taking the option to pay to play faster or for longer periods. I also don't mind companies making money off people willing to pay money for certain subscriber or premium content (something which dates all the way back to web games like "Runescape") if it means the rest of us get to play the base game for free. Like the article says, it depends on the context as to how appropriate the free-to-play model is.
@doctorhino "Video" is latin for "see," and in English it can be used to describe any visual medium whether or not it consists of recorded content. You're confusing it with the shorthand term for "video tape."
While "computer games" would technically be more accurate, that term evolved to solely refer to PC games (back when there were still major differences between the two), so "video games" is a good enough substitute.
@Tourtus That's right but for the wrong reason. My browsers make spelling mistakes all the time by trying to tell me that certain compound words should be either hyphenated or split into two words while Dictionary.com shows that I'm right the large majority of the time. At least there's the "add to dictionary" option to avoid repeat offenses.
@Joekun Then what would you call them to differentiate them from 3D shooters (both first and third person) and the more deliberate, slower-paced 2D shooters? It's a popular enough sub-genre that it needs some kind of label of its own. They basically are the video game equivalent of shoot 'em up action movies, anyway, just usually with vehicles instead of people and a lot less gore.
@k8sMum Agreed, but technically the originally definition of "troll" refers to a mythological creature, whose depiction can vary from generic high fantasy monster to cunning billy goat hunter from under a bridge to boulder-like purveyors of ancient wisdom to a piece of plastic that gets its neon hair combed by young girls.
Sadly I'm one of those that gets completely put off by the name "rogue" in anything. Immediately makes me think permadeth, procedurally generated, twitchy gameplay, all that kinda stuff. I'm sure there's more to it but the ones I've played have put me off.
@BulbasaurusRex I realized both EGM and Gamepro used Video Game so I don't know. It is whatever but personally I like the aesthetic of it being its own noun, not just a modifier on the generic game noun.
@BulbasaurusRex They already had a name, shooters. Side scrolling shooters, top down shooters. They really have nothing in common with movies by the likes of John Woo, or starring Stallone or Schwarzenegger. If anything FPS (or 3rd person) have more in common with that genre. I know there isn’t much point in this discussion as the term has been widely adopted, but you could say the same about all the other terms in this article. I wouldn’t even mind “classic shooter”, but shmup is so idiotic I have literally spent time looking for a content blocker that could find and replace the word (yeah, I know), and shoot ‘em up just doesn’t make sense to me.
@BulbasaurusRex A game like Pokemon Shuffle is an entirely single player experience. So I can understand that.
I personally still don't like the structure though. Those timers and other pay-to-unlock-faster features are dirty. There are games where you can spend literally thousands of dollars to progress at a reasonable pace, or trade months or years of your life to complete.
The exception I have are MMOs and/or multiplayer games that require the maintenance of servers and also boast regular new updates. But in that case, I would prefer a subscription model. Pay one fee a month, and then play the game as a proper game, no timers, no micro transactions, no buying levels, no buying items or unlocks of any sort.
There are games like Fortnite and Star Wars Galaxy of Heroes are examples of popular F2P titles where people can and have spent thousands of dollars unlocking things and not have everything. That's comparable to a gambling addiction.
@Joekun OK, then use the side-scrolling or top-down descriptors. Just don't use the word "shooter" by itself to describe SHMUPs specifically, since FPSes, etc. are just as much of shooters as they are. Besides, not all 2D shooters consist of the near constantly shooting style gameplay that characterizes SHMUPs, so even those descriptors aren't really accurate.
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