2D or early 3D graphics? Which era of games do you prefer?

Vyse

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Mar 27, 2006
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#1
This is something I've been thinking about recently. When people use the word "retro", they're talking about games with 2D graphics whether it be 8-bit or 16-bit and they usually apply a coat of nostalgia to that era of games. The first thing that probably comes to mind are Metroidvania-style games but you could also classify such memorable games as Final Fantasy VI and Chrono Trigger (2D games with a top-down perspective) into that same category.

I like both 2D and early 3D graphics. When I speak of the latter, I'm referring to games for the PS1, N64 and Dreamcast. Even some early PS2 games like Dark Cloud are strangely appealing in their graphics. That said, if I had to choose an overall preference, I'd have to say the era of early 3D graphics are my favorite. I remember when I first played Driver on a PS1 demo kiosk and was amazed at how "next gen" it looked, compared to when I first started playing games on the SNES. Later, I would play Crash Bandicoot, Sonic Adventure and Grand Theft Auto III and wonder about future games.

But maybe that's just me. I'm kind of weird in that I sometimes find games with older graphics more interesting than newer games with photorealistic graphics. It could be because we've reached the point of diminishing returns; the leaps and bounds in graphics are smaller nowadays.

Anyways, I'm kind of all over the place with this OP. Overall, would you say you prefer 2D or early 3D graphics? Which do you find more interesting?
 

ArnoldRimmer

Superior Member
May 23, 2015
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#3
3D without a shadow of a doubt, I remember playing old spectrum games like Jet Set Willy and Chucky Egg when I was a nipper and loving them. They had the gameplay fun but with a lot of modern titles that fun is combined with a jaw dropping amazement with just how far they've come graphically. This immensely adds to the experience for me

Sent from my SM-G900F using Tapatalk
 

Fijiandoce

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Oct 8, 2007
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#4
[QUOTE="Vyse, post: 6529273]But maybe that's just me. I'm kind of weird in that I sometimes find games with older graphics more interesting than newer games with photorealistic graphics. It could be because we've reached the point of diminishing returns; the leaps and bounds in graphics are smaller nowadays.[/QUOTE]
It could also be that as we get closer to the uncanny valley, it's easier for people to get put off.

As much as i appreciate modern graphics. I honestly can't be arsed for the complexity of the facial animations in a COD game (for example). The entire pantomime is so far beyond reality, that someone trying to represent themselves as believable in that scenario just looks silly (to me at least).

Personally, i liked that era when 2D and 3D mixed. Where you'd have 2D sprites that would represent anything animated, and anything that was solid would be drawn in 3D.

Like Grandia:


Or one of my favourite PC games from back in the day; Lords of Magic:
 

keefy

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Nov 18, 2007
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#5
3D era for sure.

I had 8 bit and 16 bit games machines in the early 90's but didn't play them a whole lot because I was mostly outside playing with friends.

I liked Silkworm, Turrican and Operation wolf on my C64 there are others I cannto remember the names of though.

Mortal Kombat, Super Skidmarks, Probotector, Sub Terrania and Earth Worm Jim and many others on my Mega drive.

I have way more 3D era games that are loved due to the immersion in both gameplay and more so the story because its not just text on screen, I could hear actual voices of real people in a high quality for the first time. Metal Gear Solid was the first of those immersive games I played on PS1. I was in awe when I first booted it up, that intro sequence still sends shivers down my spine.

[video=youtube;vj6plOoDl_s]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vj6plOoDl_s[/video]
 
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Christopher

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#6
Definitely 3D. I grew up in the arcades. Played Pacman, Galaga, etc. But then Zaxxon came out.

[video=youtube;toSxQ3QHaTc]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=toSxQ3QHaTc[/video]

That shit blew my mind. After Wolfenstein and Doom came out, it was hard to even think about 2D games even though I still loved Sonic on Genesis. Lots of folks still play 2D games today, like Shovel Knight, for nostalgia, but I just can't get interested in those anymore.
 

Chewbacca

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Dec 26, 2015
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#7
I appreciate both. My earliest gaming memories are on Atari 2600, NES, Genesis, Super Nintendo, and computer games (Doom, Oregon Trail, Dino Park Tycoon, etc...). However, things didn't really pick up steam for me until Playstation and Nintendo 64 came out.

All my closest friends were into gaming and the mid to late 90s was a fun era to live through. We would get together on weekends and bring all our systems and games to share. At the time PS came out, the idea of full motion video on discs was pretty awesome to me at 10 years old. The demo discs and TV commercials really helped market the games. It was nice to buy a gaming magazine with a demo disc, play the demos then decide which games you wanted to buy. This was the time where you only learned about games via word of mouth, commercials, renting from the store or magazines. Good times!

So while I enjoy and still play older games from time to time, 3D is what cemented me as a gamer for life.
 
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Lethal

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#8
I prefer early 3D.

Jumping Flash
Tomb Raider
Mario 64

These games blew my f'ing mind! 2D never had that affect on me.
 

Vyse

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Mar 27, 2006
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#9
Christopher said:
Definitely 3D. I grew up in the arcades. Played Pacman, Galaga, etc. But then Zaxxon came out.

That shit blew my mind. After Wolfenstein and Doom came out, it was hard to even think about 2D games even though I still loved Sonic on Genesis. Lots of folks still play 2D games today, like Shovel Knight, for nostalgia, but I just can't get interested in those anymore.
I'm impressed that such an old game features a ship you fly that casts a shadow. I know that some 2D games with a top-down perspective years later on the SNES feature moving clouds that appear to cast a shadow which I always thought was cool to see.
 
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Vyse

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Mar 27, 2006
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#10
A good example, albeit static, for The Last of Us with early 3D graphics:

 
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Chewbacca

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#11
[QUOTE="Vyse, post: 6531429]I don't like Assassin's Creed but I like how it looks in this demake:

[video=youtube;_M8GLCGx5JA]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_M8GLCGx5JA[/video][/QUOTE]

Meh that's a little off...I'd say those demakes look more like '95-'97 early 3D games.

Think about 1998...we had games like Crash Bandicoot Warped, Banjo and Kazooie, Sonic Adventure, Grim Fandango, Metal Gear Solid, Star Wars Rogue Squadron, Spyro the Dragon, Zelda Ocarina of Time, Tomb Raider III, Fallout 2, Gex Enter the Gecko, etc... The demakes remind me of the first Tomb Raider.
 
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Vyse

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Mar 27, 2006
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#12
But then you also have games like Silent Hill that came out a year later in 1999.



Okay, but seriously:



Also, to be fair, it's Ubisoft we're talking about (with the Assassin's Creed demake, I mean). They're well-known for releasing games that don't look as good as what you might expect.
 

Vyse

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Mar 27, 2006
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#13
Talk about coming full circle; Resident Evil 7 with classic Resident Evil graphics.

 
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F34R

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#14
Playing Zaxxon on my Atari 130XE (computer I first started learning how to write in BASIC) was something else. F15 Strike Eagle.. simply amazing. Nothing can every touch what the 80's brought. That being said, LOGO was awesome, and Lode Runner was brilliant.
 
R

RadicalBradical

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#15
I love both for sure, but I prefer early 3D era just a little bit more. When I was little, I felt like I was entering a completely new world playing games like Final Fantasy VII, Metal Gear Solid, and Resident Evil!
 

Lethal

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#16
Early 3D era was absolutely mind blowing.

Jumping Flash
Tomb Raider
Super Mario 64
Virtua Fighter

Games were most exciting back then when for the first time the graphics actually started feeling like another world. To move in open space for the first time as special.
 

K2D

Forum Guru
Oct 19, 2006
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#17
I prefer.. Whatever era remasteres/emulate the best. I haven't got time for OG PS1/MSDOS ect.

Definitely like retro style/DEmastered games for that very reason!
 
Feb 11, 2008
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#18
[QUOTE="Lethal, post: 6533608]Early 3D era was absolutely mind blowing.

Jumping Flash
Tomb Raider
Super Mario 64
Virtua Fighter

Games were most exciting back then when for the first time the graphics actually started feeling like another world. To move in open space for the first time as special.[/QUOTE]
You're too young to participate in gaming for the first time when it was awesome. lol Those early 80's. Arcades!!!!
 

Lethal

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#19
[QUOTE="F34R, post: 6533669]You're too young to participate in gaming for the first time when it was awesome. lol Those early 80's. Arcades!!!![/QUOTE]

I wish I was too young. Gaming in the 80s was great. But nothing blew my mind like the 3D era of the mid to late 90s.