Want to know why major publishers make crap apps? Look in the mirror

Original author: Ryan Rigney
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IOS version of the classic fighting game Marvel vs. Capcom 2, released April 25th, is pretty high on the App Store's sales charts. And this is a symbol of complete mess in the game world.

Marvel vs. Capcom 2, which features Street Fighter characters and Marvel superheroes, has low-resolution graphics and an obscene frame rate. But its main problem in management: the game uses an on-screen virtual joystick and buttons that play an arcade machine with the original game. There is not a single exact blow from which the splendor of the original game was formed. You simply swipe your fingers across the screen in the hope that something good will happen.


But players will buy this lazy monster because they remember the name. And as long as the crap continues to sell, publishers will have no reason to change their behavior.

Why should big publishers like Capcom take the risk and create original games that take full advantage of the touchscreens when fans already consume low-quality game ports with well-known names? Why not just make a profit from lovers too drunk with nostalgia to resist? Publishers could never give up the temptation to easily sell ported versions of already developed games, despite the fact that consumers who buy these games in most cases get negative feelings.

Such companies are not at all unskilled or stupid or simply poor at developing mobile games. They simply do not have enough restraint, and as a result we got a market that was flooded with amateur games with monstrous control from the studios that have behind them the best experience.

In a recent article in the New York Times Magazine , which the author called "stupid games," iOS designer Zack Gage explained how, in his opinion, publishers were exploring the mobile market at the dawn of the iPhone.

“Everyone was trying to figure out a way to make the games they already released suitable for the platform. Tetris was not made for the touchscreen. If we did not have these original games, and we would only have a touchscreen, then we would never have seen games like this. He would never have appeared in a natural way, since he is not good for a touchscreen. "

Imagine a world in which the iOS version of Marvel vs. Capcom 2 would not have a nostalgic component. Would anyone be pleased with her?

Capcom is one of the worst examples. 18 of the 20 Capcom titles on iOS are ports of existing games. The company has only two original games and this is not very good. Of the 18 ports, 16 relies heavily on on-screen virtual control.

The three most popular paid Capcom apps currently are Marvel vs. Capcom 2, Street Fighter IV and Street Fighter IV Volt. Somehow, the least manageable games on iOS sell best. Other bestsellers, Resident Evil 4 and Mega Man X, are also remakes of traditional button arcades that use on-screen controls.

But these games are not just more popular than games created specifically for iOS, they can be sold at a premium price of about $ 5 each. If more people buy $ 5 pieces of govnosoft than the original content for $ 1, then why try and make good games?

And Capcom is not alone. In fact, he is in a large company of the world's largest game publishers. The creators of Call of Duty and World of Warcraft from Activision's Blizzard can't understand what to do with the App Store. 10 out of 12 games are semi-finished products with a bunch of errors and with virtual controllers based on existing franchises. In addition to the original Pix Maze and the new Skylanders Cloud Patrol, everything else the company puts out for iOS looks like something for the Nokia N-Gage.

Ubisoft plays on the same notes. The company's best-selling app is Assassin's Creed II Discovery, a mediocre endless runner with virtual buttons that has not been updated for two years since its release and sells for $ 6.

Square Enix took off early in the life of the iPhone and released original games. Remember Song Summoner, Hills and Rivers Remain, Vanguard Storm, Sliding Heroes and Crystal Defenders? Of course not, since no one bought them. The company has since become much wiser and began to release expensive ports of old role-playing games for iOS, from Secret of Mana ($ 9) to Chrono Trigger ($ 10).

With 107 apps in the App Store, Electronic Arts takes iOS more seriously than most of its competitors. But for every meticulously crafted Mirror's Edge, there is Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3. And Battlefield 3: Aftershock was so unpopular that the company even removed the app from the App Store.

We get the games we deserve. If you want the best line of games for iOS, the only way is to stop impulsively buying games based on your nostalgic desires, and start rewarding the best games. Otherwise, you are giving the publishers the wrong signals.

PS From the translator: In the discussion of our last article , a link to this Wired article appeared. We at Apps4All , frankly, already planned to translate it, but the dispute that has arisen has accelerated the process itself - thanks Yizahi for the comment .

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