6 Things Next-Gen Open World Games Absolutely Have To Do

By: 02.06.14  •  23 Comments

The next-generation of gaming has arrived, and with it comes a whole new crop of open world games — in fact, it seems like open world gaming is going to be more of a focus than ever going forward. Metal Gear Solid V, Mirror’s Edge 2, The Witcher 3, Mad Max, The Division, Destiny, Watch Dogs, InFamous: Second Son, The Crew, Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor, Thief, Dragon Age: Inquisition, Dying Light — frankly, it’s hard to find a major upcoming game that isn’t doing the open world thing.

Of course this raises the question — how will these next-gen open worlds differ from the crop we got last generation? Obviously they’ll look nicer, but hopefully the changes don’t stop there. Developers need to use the new processing power at their fingertips to make changes that fundementally improve the way open world games play. Changes such as…

No Loading Times Ever

Open world games have gradually been getting better about the constant loading times, but given the huge slabs of RAM developers now have to work with, I shouldn’t be seeing loading times ever. Not as I run around a city, not as I enter a mission area, not after I die, not before or after cutscenes…never…f–king…EVER. Oh, and no elevators either — that s–t may have fooled people back in the days of Halo and Metroid Prime, but it’s 2014 now. We’ve figured out your game.

gammasquadopenworld2If I see a building I want to be able to break in and steal all it’s stuff. 

Make Your World An Onion

No, I don’t mean smelly and eye watering — I want layers. If I see, say, an apartment block, I want to be able to go into it. Once into it I want to be able to break into somebody’s apartment. One in that apartment I want to be able to rifle through their drawers, check what’s on their computers and wear their underwear on my head. Uh, perhaps I’ve said too much.

No more Hollywood backlot sets posing as real worlds. I don’t care how huge your game’s map is if all the buildings are just cardboard backdrops I can’t interact with. I’ll gladly take a smaller, denser map if the trade-off is greater depth and verisimilitude. Blu-rays go up to 128 GB now guys — use that space.

Let Me Leave My Mark

For the most part, it still feels like you’re just a tourist passing through most open worlds. Oh sure, if you complete a certain mission a pre-determined change might happen in the world, but I want to be able to dictate how things change. I want to be able to blow up a building with a bazooka and have it say blown up. I want to be able to kill a hobo, stuff him in a dumpster and be able to go back and check on him throughout the game. Have I said too much again?

Games like Minecraft really allow you to leave you mark in very low-res sort of way. It’s time to give that kind of creativity to players in more fully realized worlds.

Around The Web


How To BBQ Brisket In An Old Propane Tank: A Father-Son Story

Director Tobias Lindholm Discusses Meeting With Taliban Warriors For His Oscar-Nominated ‘A War’

Learn Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About Eggnog With Tyson Buhler Of Death And Company

Steph Curry Is ‘Just A Shooter’? Charles Barkley Gives Us His Harsh Criticism Of The MVP

Ben Schwartz Talks About Keeping Busy And The Physics Of His Jean-Ralphio Hair

The Nod: The ‘Crash’ Upset, 10 Years Later

By:  •  16 Comments

EAT THIS CITY: Chef Carrie Nahabedian Shares Her ‘Can’t Miss’ Food Experiences In Chicago

DJ Jazzy Jeff Talks World Tour With Will Smith, Culture of DJing, And Academy Awards Boycotts

‘An Endless Weekend’: What’s It Like To Go To The Super Bowl With 50 Of Your Closest Friends And Family?

Follow These Eight Travelers On Snapchat And They’ll Show You The World

What It’s Like To Watch The Super Bowl In A Strip Club

Nikki Glaser On Her New Series ‘Not Safe With Nikki Glaser’ And Being A ‘Curious Perv’