Naomi's Rough Draft Blog

Archive for December 2011

Honestly, I don’t no too much about sidescrollers.  The only two I’ve played are the old Sonic games (Sonic 1 to 3, not 4) and a Mario or two.  But I play more as a hedgehog than a plummer.

So why talk about them at all, you might ask?

For a few reasons: to mull and rant about something I can’t change, to talk about how we’ve moved from a side view to a 360 camera angle over the years, and . . . to say that I’m not dead, I just haven’t updated in a while.

Well, *ahem*, on with the rant.

I find sidescrollers very interesting, and when I do play them I find myself in a complete virtual world at my full control, all within a single and unchanging camera angle.  Sidescrollers hold both limited and unlimited possibilities.  I say limited because you have a single camera angle and, in some cases, a single direction, because sometimes once you’ve crossed to a further point on the screen, there’s no turning back thanks to an invisible barrier.

And I say unlimited . . . because if the camera angle can’t change, that doesn’t mean your direction can’t.

In sidescrollers, entire worlds can be found, but not just on the main surface, because just because we can’t go left doesn’t mean we can’t go up.  Hidden passages and secret doors can be discovered underneath your feet, or high up into the stratosphere.  You can walk on clouds, or burrow to the earth’s core.  Just make sure you bring extra lives.

Video games have evolved enormously since the era of sidescrollers.  We’ve gone from a side view to a first person angle, and the camera can be rotated a full circle in most games, so you can see more to your character than just the side.  Some game developers, however, still try to revive the old sidescrolling classics, such as Sega’s Sonic 4, a 3D sidescroller which was a continuation to the sidescrollers of the 1990s.     Numerous flash games have taken the sidescroller to the next level, creating unique gameplay and story that fits snugly into the genre.  The sidescroller has attached on to many different types of games, such as point-and-click, shooting, adventure, and horror.

We’ve gone up and up with sidescrollers, creating games that are different but special, adding on to the age-old game play.  And yet, when you play a simple sidescroller, all you have to do is turn right.

And the adventure beings.


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