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Thread: Playing MAME and feeling cheated

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    Default Playing MAME and feeling cheated

    So I just finished playing through 1941 on MAME. I died a lot naturally. I love shmups but I suck at them lol. No worries though because I can just keep plugging in credits until I beat it. Though when I did I couldn't help but feel a little cheated. I mean it's great to beat games that you never could as a kid because you either ran out of quarters or didn't want to waste them all on one game. However it's not really that fun nor rewarding to just keeping feeding in credits til you reach the end.

    So how do feel about this? Do you not care that you can run threw a game in a matter of a few minutes? Or do you maybe only limit yourself to a few credits and see how far you can get with that set amount?
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    Wouldn't it be more appropriate to lament the change over to continue based arcade games, versus the type of game you try and achieve a high score. I personally don't have a preference, but it's often a topic of heated debate.

    Anyway, I play through the entire game usually. Games that offer further gameplay through a continue based system are designed to be played this way. It's less about skill and more about how much money you have. There are many games I played as a kid that I couldn't afford to beat. The games are made to eat quarters, and a lot are nearly impossible to complete on single credit. I'm glad that MAME exists, so I can now play though all those games I couldn't as a kid. I also find the more you play through the entire game the less credits you often need... funny how that works.

    So if your asking if I felt cheated, the answer is yes. But cheated because it used to take a roll of quarters to play through. But I don't feel cheated because I can play through the entire game for free nowadays. I guess it seems sort of a silly question to me.

    Also, this topic probably belongs in Arcade Alley.

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    Personally I don't understand when people complain about having unlimited credits in a games (whether it be in MAME, or with a console port). If you want to you can just play through the whole game using as many credits as you want, or if you don't want to do that is it really that hard to limit yourself to a set number of continues?

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    Quote Originally Posted by DisastrophE View Post
    So I just finished playing through 1941 on MAME. I died a lot naturally. I love shmups but I suck at them lol. No worries though because I can just keep plugging in credits until I beat it. Though when I did I couldn't help but feel a little cheated. I mean it's great to beat games that you never could as a kid because you either ran out of quarters or didn't want to waste them all on one game. However it's not really that fun nor rewarding to just keeping feeding in credits til you reach the end.

    So how do feel about this? Do you not care that you can run threw a game in a matter of a few minutes? Or do you maybe only limit yourself to a few credits and see how far you can get with that set amount?
    I used to think about this as well.

    Read this-
    http://insomnia.ac/commentary/arcade_culture/

    The guy who wrote it may be kind of a jerk, but it definitely changed the way I look at playing MAME.

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    Pear (Level 6) Gentlegamer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by XYXZYZ View Post
    I used to think about this as well.

    Read this-
    http://insomnia.ac/commentary/arcade_culture/

    The guy who wrote it may be kind of a jerk, but it definitely changed the way I look at playing MAME.
    Me too: now I play both MAME and real coin-ops strictly as one credit plays. Much more enjoyable actually.

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    Quote Originally Posted by XYXZYZ View Post
    I used to think about this as well.

    Read this-
    http://insomnia.ac/commentary/arcade_culture/

    The guy who wrote it may be kind of a jerk, but it definitely changed the way I look at playing MAME.
    And I vote against reading that as it's a lot of filler and name-dropping. Plus the author is more than 'kind of a jerk', at least has the reputation to be despite his moniker (icycalm). Topic author: consult method described by Arctic Feather as it pretty much boils down to not slamming the '5' key for more coins.

    I don't know when I changed my position from inserting many coins to 1 credit per run but when I did it was with good reason. High scores aren't submitted if a continue is used in arcades, as world recording holding goes only scores one a single credit are accepted. Twin Galaxies or Arcadia. I wanted legitimate scores and in addition I wanted to be better at the game, whereby progress via score or stage/level increase on one credit is the only way. Yes, some of the best in the world credit feed, in order to get familiar with later, far more difficult stages/areas, but when it comes to score time it's one credit or bust. In the end, this depends on if the individual enjoys the game or not. If you do, then credit feeding once doesn't do much harm as you'll perhaps naturally seek to improve since it's enjoyable. It's safe to assume most of the people at the top of given score boards for certain games enjoy a game to such an extent that skill is not the only factor in seeing their dominance. Practice is the name of the game and one must crawl before they can walk if a large factor in being successful in arcade games specifically. To beat a game on one coin is the challenge and if the game is fun the experience is even moreso.

    1941 is a very good example of a challenging game... on one credit. Anyone can beat it credit feeding but not so many have done it without. Credit feeding in many cases removes challenge and as such competitiveness. For me, cf-ing 1941 wouldn't mean jack and I haven't done anything anybody else couldn't do if they had the appropriate funds (or '5' keys). Plus it takes barely any effort, so why should I do this when I could... nothing? If my goal is fun, it's going to be different from someone elses viewpoint so perhaps I cannot see the forest for the trees but for me, for a run/score in a game to count and to actually have a sense of accomplishment it's one coin or nothing. Credit feeding is just one way to practice assuming the game is played more than once. Speaking for myself, I've probably dumped just under 10 hours into 1941 and I've not yet cleared it on one credit. It's a tough game and at times can be cheap, however several hours down the road in terms of experience and practice I'll eventually get it and it will be all the more satisfying. It's the entire mantra of arcade games, fun (the bait) and challenging (the hook).
    Last edited by fahlim003; 11-26-2009 at 07:49 PM.

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    I read that, and I think he needs to actually get out to arcades more and really see the money makers. Well, in different regions.

    The huge money maker that everybody crowded around in Omaha (well last couple times I was there), Deal or No Deal. Yeah. I am serious. There was a crowd around it and it was out front.

    Now for fun:
    Why are the controls always spot-on and intuitive?
    This is not true for every single game. No examples popup off of the top of my head, but they are not always spot on.

    Why are there no cutscenes?
    Really? I have no idea what games he plays, but many of the newer ones do have cutscenes.

    Why are licenced games rare?
    Apparently Guitar Hero Arcade (buttload of licensed songs), Nick Toons Racing and Fast and Furious (just to name the 1st 3 off of the top of my head), which happen to be everywhere I go do not count.

    Why are the games extremely challenging?
    Crazy Taxi (off of the top of my head), appeals to many people because of the fact that it is easy. Sure, your score may suck at the end if you are not good at it, but it appeals to everybody.

    Why is there no padding ( la Halo, for example, where half the latter stages are a bad joke)?
    I would give a different answer: most arcade games are generally shorter than big budget games. Yes, in my eyes, it is that simple.

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    Quote Originally Posted by XYXZYZ View Post
    I used to think about this as well.

    Read this-
    http://insomnia.ac/commentary/arcade_culture/

    The guy who wrote it may be kind of a jerk, but it definitely changed the way I look at playing MAME.
    There have been tons of INCREDIBLY sh!tty arcade games released.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DisastrophE View Post
    So I just finished playing through 1941 on MAME. I died a lot naturally. I love shmups but I suck at them lol. No worries though because I can just keep plugging in credits until I beat it. Though when I did I couldn't help but feel a little cheated. I mean it's great to beat games that you never could as a kid because you either ran out of quarters or didn't want to waste them all on one game. However it's not really that fun nor rewarding to just keeping feeding in credits til you reach the end.

    So how do feel about this? Do you not care that you can run threw a game in a matter of a few minutes? Or do you maybe only limit yourself to a few credits and see how far you can get with that set amount?
    Truth be told, I don't. Playing any game though MAME is hardly the same thing as the real deal anyway, and it's not a matter of the difference between the original hardware and emulation, it's that we are not 12 anymore. I don't mind if I have to use god knows how many credits to finish a game. I have a plethora of responsibilities I didn't had back then and most importantly, I lack the patience.

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    Quote Originally Posted by XYXZYZ View Post
    I used to think about this as well.

    Read this-
    http://insomnia.ac/commentary/arcade_culture/

    The guy who wrote it may be kind of a jerk, but it definitely changed the way I look at playing MAME.
    Glad to see I'm not the only one who thought of this first. He's a bit of a dick, and arrogant as hell, but I think it suits his writing style: the video game snob. Simply put, without people like him decrying the mainstream industry, there would be a lot less innovation and a lot more complacency.

    But that's a bit off topic. Getting better at SHMUPS requires dedication and self-discipline, as well as some self-awareness as to where you keep screwing up. Maybe you get into a blind panic when bullets come at you and fling your ship backwards into some stray bullets. Cut that shit out. Try to get better at judging the absolute minimum amount of movement you need to get out of the way. The farther you move, the bigger chance you're going to hit something you didn't take into account. Sometimes, that means standing still. Just because something's coming at you does not mean it's going to hit, and you have to focus on getting better at figuring out when to move and when to hold your ground.

    Also, try to play a variety of shooters. A lot of companies have their own unique style, and the more you get better at, the better you'll get at the rest. Sometimes you should completely stay away from the genre and pick up a platformer. The key is variety, and a platformer has a lot of the same difficulty issues SHMUPS have, and then some.

    Do yourself a favor and devote an hour or two of back-to-back playing with some older SHMUPS. Don't just download twenty roms and flip between them every five minutes. You're not going to get any better if you don't give your brain time to adjust to each play style. Space Invaders, Atlantis--anything without rapid-fire. I'm not going to bullshit you: the genre evolved for a reason, and you only got two shots on-screen because the program couldn't handle anything more, but they rely less on accurate shooting and more on accurate dodging. Don't get me wrong, both are essential, but in my experience the better you get at sniping your enemies, the better you'll get at judging trajectories in general.

    Also, get away from the bottom of the screen, it cripples dodging. They give you eight directions for a reason: you need them, and you can't move backwards if there's nowhere to go. If you're stuck at the edge of the screen, you're just screwing yourself over.
    Edit: Whoops, I forgot two important things that've already been touched on: practice one-crediting and credit-feeding. Just remember to keep track of how many credits it takes to beat, and keep trying.
    Last edited by Nonplus; 11-26-2009 at 10:18 PM.

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    It's not just MAME -- any retro arcade compilation for PlayStation 2, Xbox, etc. will let you credit feed as much as you'd like. I agree with the previous posters who said that they only play with one credit. I've been playing arcade games via emulation/console for this way for as long as I can remember. Plus, it's the only way to get recognized on a website like MARP.
    "I am a cipher, wrapped in an enigma, smothered in secret sauce."

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nonplus View Post
    Glad to see I'm not the only one who thought of this first. He's a bit of a dick, and arrogant as hell, but I think it suits his writing style: the video game snob. Simply put, without people like him decrying the mainstream industry, there would be a lot less innovation and a lot more complacency.
    He is nor a dick nor arrogant, he is an idiot. The video game industry has outgrown arcades, what is left are a few pockets of resistance in japan and the odd arcade here and there. Whats worse is that the writer doesn't seem to have a clue of what arcades where about, all he has is a romanticized version of the hardcore gamer and the unhealthy image of some nut job glued to a screen dodging bullets. Arcade games are supposed to be harder to make more as much money as they can, end of story.

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    Reading this makes me wanna go to an arcade...
    NES, Atari 7800, Genesis, SNES, Saturn, Nintendo 64, Dreamcast, PlayStation 2, GameCube, Atari Flashback 2, Limited Edition Red Wii, PS3 Slim, GBC, GBA, GBASP, DS Lite, and PSP 3000.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hari Seldon View Post
    He is nor a dick nor arrogant, he is an idiot. The video game industry has outgrown arcades, what is left are a few pockets of resistance in japan and the odd arcade here and there. Whats worse is that the writer doesn't seem to have a clue of what arcades where about, all he has is a romanticized version of the hardcore gamer and the unhealthy image of some nut job glued to a screen dodging bullets. Arcade games are supposed to be harder to make more as much money as they can, end of story.
    But didn't he make that point? Arcade games are supposed to sap away as much money as they can, and we're supposed to beat it with as little money as possible.
    Yes, arcades are dying: the machines are prohibitively expensive, each continue nets you fifty cents, and most people don't want to go somewhere to play video games when they can do it right from there home. Cave's doing what they can to combat upfront costs, but only time will tell if it actually matters (it probably won't, but we can dream).

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nonplus View Post
    But didn't he make that point? Arcade games are supposed to sap away as much money as they can, and we're supposed to beat it with as little money as possible.
    Yes, arcades are dying: the machines are prohibitively expensive, each continue nets you fifty cents, and most people don't want to go somewhere to play video games when they can do it right from there home. Cave's doing what they can to combat upfront costs, but only time will tell if it actually matters (it probably won't, but we can dream).
    Indeed, however he seems to have completely missed the point of why arcades existed in the first place. They used to be a place where you ended up paying more to play better looking games than at home. With that difference no longer a factor, they have no reason to exist anymore.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheDomesticInstitution View Post
    Anyway, I play through the entire game usually. Games that offer further gameplay through a continue based system are designed to be played this way. It's less about skill and more about how much money you have.
    They are not designed to be played that way. You are either very bad at games or know very little about them. Anyone with skills for shoot 'em ups can appreciate how the games are designed with trying to finish the game with one credit in mind. That's how we play the games in Japan - the country that these games were designed in and the market they were catered for.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mimi Nakamura View Post
    They are not designed to be played that way. You are either very bad at games or know very little about them. Anyone with skills for shoot 'em ups can appreciate how the games are designed with trying to finish the game with one credit in mind. That's how we play the games in Japan - the country that these games were designed in and the market they were catered for.


    Thanks for your assessment on my skills as a gamer and my knowledge about video games. I read the article above and learned that the Japanese and American arcades are very very different as are the attitudes toward the way an arcade is played. The author was also really insulting in some parts of the article, and suggested that this mental approach was only one way to treat these masterfully crafted skill challenges (or video games as I call them). Actually his arrogant tone throughout the article and yours are very similar. That aside, I did learn quite a bit.

    I also find it hard to believe that a game like 1941 where the Americans blow up Japanese planes was made specifically for a Japanese market.

    Then there's another school of thought that says these sort of games ruined the arcades.

    I don't know if I believe that there is a right way to play a continue based arcade game. When your a small child and you get to play an arcade game 3 or 4 times a year, and your only allowed a dollar or two, it's kind of hard to master any game. And it was pretty hard for a kid like myself to envision that these games are ever meant to do anything but take your money for giving little in return.

    I also disagree that you can't improve your skills using continues. If you play a game enough using the one credit method or by using multiple credits you still get better at the game. Anyway it's late and I'm tired and this is a pretty pointless argument, especially with you. I'm going to agree to disagree, even if you don't

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    There can be only one Tim Rogers. I wish his clones would have a battle of the fittest, so only the strongest could survive and carry on with his style. In hopes of one of them breaking off and mutating into something that goes into a new and interesting direction.

    Not to be too fucked up, but that article's point isn't exactly new. Penny Arcade made the same statement buried somewhere on their blog, which sparked the discussion in the more main of the gaming stream for a week...at least a year or two before the article in question. The very audience he dicks early in his article, had already been there and done that before he opened word.

    As other have said, you need to learn to embrace the 1CC philosophy. Shmups become brilliant once death carries a real penalty (which now days is simply starting over without losing money). You want the ultimate lesson in the importance of learning the game and having incentive not to lose in an arcade setting? Time travel to the summer of 92-93 and try to play on a busy Street Fighter 2 machine. Make sure you only brought 2 dollars in quarters with you and did you remember to bring enough plutonium for the return trip?
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheDomesticInstitution View Post
    I don't know if I believe that there is a right way to play a continue based arcade game. When your a small child and you get to play an arcade game 3 or 4 times a year, and your only allowed a dollar or two, it's kind of hard to master any game. And it was pretty hard for a kid like myself to envision that these games are ever meant to do anything but take your money for giving little in return.
    That's probably because the game wasn't designed to be played by small children. As a child it was probably hard to understand, but now that you're a fully grown adult it shouldn't be too hard a concept for you to grasp.

    If you ever took the time to properly play the games you would see quite clearly that the level designs are geared towards one credit completions. Just look at the frequency and order of the power ups, it's not that hard to see.

    The right way to play a game is to play it the way it was designed to be played. You'll have much more fun if you do that.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hari Seldon View Post
    Indeed, however he seems to have completely missed the point of why arcades existed in the first place. They used to be a place where you ended up paying more to play better looking games than at home. With that difference no longer a factor, they have no reason to exist anymore.
    People started opening up arcades because there was no other way to play video games, and they lasted because the first consoles were down-right expensive. When the industry crashed, they went with it.
    Games usually retail for around sixty bucks when they first come out, which actually means you generally pay a lot more to play it. It's more of an investment situation: you can pay fifty cents at an arcade, or you can just outright buy the game. Whether it saves you money all depends on if you think the game is worth buying or not.
    But that's irrelevant: arcades are a social event. It's like going to a bar: everything's horribly overpriced but you're not there looking for the best deal, you're just trying to go out and have a good time.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mimi Nakamura View Post
    If you ever took the time to properly play the games you would see quite clearly that the level designs are geared towards one credit completions. Just look at the frequency and order of the power ups, it's not that hard to see.

    The right way to play a game is to play it the way it was designed to be played. You'll have much more fun if you do that.
    Arcade games are not designed to be beaten on one credit, they're built to make arcade operators money, otherwise they wouldn't buy the company's machines. No operator wants to make fifty cents an hour on something they just spent $1200 on. Sure, every once in a while someone beats the system, but that true about life in general. Harley-Davidsons are not built to be the fastest motorcycles. While the industry has evolved and engineers continue to find more efficient designs, they've always stuck with the classic Harley look to support backwards compatibility between older and newer models. Every once in a while someone wins a tournament with one, but they're not designed for it.

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