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 It's... it's beautiful. (AKA the videogame graphics appreciation society)

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JayMoyles
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PostSubject: It's... it's beautiful. (AKA the videogame graphics appreciation society)   Wed 26 Mar 2014 - 21:48

Inspired by the beginning of the second episode of Bioshock Infinite's Burial at Sea.





Basically, what games have blown you away through their visuals? Why? Is it because of brilliant art direction such as Wind Waker or a plethora of Ninty titles, or was it because today's technology managed to make you believe that what you were seeing was almost real, like in the racing games of today? Post screenshots and let's marvel at some pretty games.
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Drunkalilly
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PostSubject: Re: It's... it's beautiful. (AKA the videogame graphics appreciation society)   Wed 26 Mar 2014 - 22:06

The galaxy games had some moments of surreal beauty. Especially whenever water levels got involved. There was one in the first game where it was basically a ball of water in space and swimming to the bottom looked incredible and bazaar.

Every single moment of Skyward Sword.
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JayMoyles
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PostSubject: Re: It's... it's beautiful. (AKA the videogame graphics appreciation society)   Wed 26 Mar 2014 - 22:23

Buskalilly wrote:
The galaxy games had some moments of surreal beauty. Especially whenever water levels got involved. There was one in the first game where it was basically a ball of water in space and swimming to the bottom looked incredible and bazaar.

Perfect example. I remember the first time booting that up how unbelievable the Mushroom Kingdom looked in that opening scene.
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PostSubject: Re: It's... it's beautiful. (AKA the videogame graphics appreciation society)   Wed 26 Mar 2014 - 22:30

Wario Land: The Shake Dimension and Kirby's Epic Yarn will always look fantastic, be it three-four years on or twenty. I was absolutely floored the first time I'd saw them. Ditto the A Boy and his Blob update.
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PostSubject: Re: It's... it's beautiful. (AKA the videogame graphics appreciation society)   Wed 26 Mar 2014 - 23:42

inb4senrankagura.

*El Shaddai always looked good, it's just a shame the game they wrapped those graphics around was so hurtfully tedious.
*In GTA IV I was stood at the corner of some island, and the camera was looking out over the water as the sun set- that looked amazing.
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PostSubject: Re: It's... it's beautiful. (AKA the videogame graphics appreciation society)   Thu 27 Mar 2014 - 0:17

I would give 2k £50 for a Bishock Infinite: Definitive Edition on PS4.

There's a few games that have looked gorgeous in different ways such as both Bioshocks which the world is part of the game. Then you got thing's like

Journey


Flower


Unfinished Swan


Which are all pieces of art, which with out those visuals wouldn't be the games they are.

But I do like thing's like this from Mr I Don't Like Videogames Cage

With it's realism brings believability to his world's and story.
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PostSubject: Re: It's... it's beautiful. (AKA the videogame graphics appreciation society)   Thu 27 Mar 2014 - 7:58

I can see this thread running and running.  In fact, I've half a mind to sticky it, because I see it as being in the same category as the music threads: people adding pictures of their favourite beautiful scenes as new games come out. What do people think?

JayMoyles wrote:
Is it because of brilliant art direction such as Wind Waker or a plethora of Ninty titles, or was it because today's technology managed to make you believe that what you were seeing was almost real, like in the racing games of today?

That said, I think it was Extra Credits (back when I used to watch it regularly) that suggested the difference between aesthetics and graphics.  It defined graphics as things like particle effects, individual blades of grass waving, how many hairs can you distinguish on CoD Ghosts' dog's testicles etc., and I couldn't give a monkey's about them.  Aesthetics, on the other hand, are things like art direction, use of colour, and little things to add ambience, and I love a game that uses those well.

I'll post some pictures later, but for now I'll say that Buska's mention of the SD Mario Galaxy is a great shout.


Last edited by Balladeer on Thu 27 Mar 2014 - 10:04; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: It's... it's beautiful. (AKA the videogame graphics appreciation society)   Thu 27 Mar 2014 - 9:17

Balladeer wrote:
how many hairs can you distinguish on CoD Ghosts' dog's testicles etc., and I couldn't give a monkey's about them.

How can you not give a monkey's? It's literally the dog's bollocks!
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PostSubject: Re: It's... it's beautiful. (AKA the videogame graphics appreciation society)   Thu 27 Mar 2014 - 10:34

Balladeer wrote:

That said, I think it was Extra Credits (back when I used to watch it regularly) that suggested the difference between aesthetics and graphics.  It defined graphics as things like particle effects, individual blades of grass waving, how many hairs can you distinguish on CoD Ghosts' dog's testicles etc., and I couldn't give a monkey's about them.  Aesthetics, on the other hand, are things like art direction, use of colour, and little things to add ambience, and I love a game that uses those well.

That's a solid definition there, but I think it's unfair to dismiss how impressive graphical qualities of a game can be - especially when coupled with some great aesthetics.

Having said that, I feel great art direction should nearly always take a precedent over graphical fidelity. Indie titles with a unique look are more likely to grab my attention. Braid, anyone?

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PostSubject: Re: It's... it's beautiful. (AKA the videogame graphics appreciation society)   Thu 27 Mar 2014 - 10:39

I don't think this one needs any introduction.  Xenoblade as a whole was just a bloody beautiful game, every single time I thought it was done and couldn't possibly top the last area it proceeded to do so, this area remained a highlight throughout the game however.





I seriously can't wait for X, if it's the spiritual sequel to xenoblade like it seems then it's going to have the same drop dead gorgeous art direction while also having amazing graphics to back it up.
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PostSubject: Re: It's... it's beautiful. (AKA the videogame graphics appreciation society)   Thu 27 Mar 2014 - 10:39

That's gorgeous! I really regret not playing Xenoblade.
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PostSubject: Re: It's... it's beautiful. (AKA the videogame graphics appreciation society)   Thu 27 Mar 2014 - 10:40

That does look, I'm still yet to play mine.

I can think of loads more and agree with Balla, as when we all play Child of Light for example that's bound to get some post's.
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PostSubject: Re: It's... it's beautiful. (AKA the videogame graphics appreciation society)   Thu 27 Mar 2014 - 10:48

Surely that Xenoblade pic isn't a screenshot. The game looked decent for a Wii game and it had some nice views but I don't remember it looking anywhere near that good!

Some more obvious suggestions from me would include Uncharted and The Last of Us. Regularly breathtaking environments.
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PostSubject: Re: It's... it's beautiful. (AKA the videogame graphics appreciation society)   Thu 27 Mar 2014 - 10:54

JayMoyles wrote:
That's a solid definition there, but I think it's unfair to dismiss how impressive graphical qualities of a game can be - especially when coupled with some great aesthetics.

Don't care, going to do it anyway. Nah nah! Obviously it's important to a degree (small one), but would I rather look at this:



or this:

Spoilered so it doesn't ugly up the thread:
 

? I even chose quite a nice Forza 5 shot, and it still can't compete with a 2007 SDef. game with some colour.

Mix them together, however, and you do get this:



...and even then, I still prefer the SMG picture!

Also, going to sticky this unless someone tells me to take it down.
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PostSubject: Re: It's... it's beautiful. (AKA the videogame graphics appreciation society)   Thu 27 Mar 2014 - 10:57

But FORZA is realistic racer it would looked stupid if looked like Mario.
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PostSubject: Re: It's... it's beautiful. (AKA the videogame graphics appreciation society)   Thu 27 Mar 2014 - 11:14

Uncharted 2 and 3:



Screenshots really don't do it justice as the animations are really what bring it to life, with moving snow/sand and waving trees and plants, to little things like Nate supporting himself by putting his hand on objects as he climbs past.

The style is also stunning, as it's a kind of "exaggerated realism", as the colours are much more vibrant than real life, leading to loads of stunning (and varied) locations.
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PostSubject: Re: It's... it's beautiful. (AKA the videogame graphics appreciation society)   Thu 27 Mar 2014 - 11:27

masofdas wrote:
But FORZA is realistic racer it would looked stupid if looked like Mario.

I'd be much more likely to buy it if it did, but the point is that in a vacuum, the game with the worse graphics and better aesthetics looks many myriad times better (in my opinion).



This really needs to be seen in motion, but I cannot express how happy this jiggling baobab from DKCTF made me. A thing of pure joy.
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PostSubject: Re: It's... it's beautiful. (AKA the videogame graphics appreciation society)   Thu 27 Mar 2014 - 11:40

On the graphics fidelity front despite recently only now coming in to the hd era I'd honestly have to say after playing a few things that I think the whole push for constantly having higher fidelity realistic graphics is relatively uneccessary. One of the first games I played was the hd port of soul calibur 2, which as we all know is very old. And frankly I think it looked better with its smooth quality than a large number of the games made nowadays.

I'd rather a game with a simpler set of graphics running at absolute maximum output settings than I would a mediocre performing "realistic" game any day myself.
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PostSubject: Re: It's... it's beautiful. (AKA the videogame graphics appreciation society)   Thu 27 Mar 2014 - 14:53

Balla: I'm with Mas on this one - using Forza as your example there doesn't work - the whole point of Forza, and indeed most racers, as that they're meant to look hyper-realistic as opposed to having more stylised visuals. I'm as equally impressed by something like this...



...with all its brilliant lighting and modelling on the car itself as I am with something like this.



Speaking of which, the Prince of Persia reboot in 2008 was a criminally underrated game, and I mean just look at it - it's gorgeous!
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PostSubject: Re: It's... it's beautiful. (AKA the videogame graphics appreciation society)   Thu 27 Mar 2014 - 15:00

I don't see why it doesn't work, given that I'm referring to my own personal tastes. I find the colourful style of SMG much nicer than the hyper-realistic style of Forza, independent of the games they belong to or indeed dependent on them. You may be impressed by the car picture above, but it looks utterly uninteresting to me (as indeed does the entire genre).

I'm not trying to give an objective assessment of which is prettier, because that'd be impossible. This is art we're talking about here!

You're equally impressed by both, though? Really? Meh, each to their own.
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PostSubject: Re: It's... it's beautiful. (AKA the videogame graphics appreciation society)   Thu 27 Mar 2014 - 17:38

That FORZA picture is lovely and so it that car which is art in its on right.

I like both in the same way like Jay, it's different horses for different course's. Certain things work for different games, I brought up child of light if that was more a realistic game I personally wouldn't have any interest in it but racers I want to be realistic as I want it to be as close to driving a Ferrari as possible.

But still either have to come down to gameplay as crysis is gorgeous in a realistic way but as dull as dishwater to play.

See what your saying about the genre of realistic racer's is a lot like the kids with JRPGS.
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PostSubject: Re: It's... it's beautiful. (AKA the videogame graphics appreciation society)   Thu 27 Mar 2014 - 17:59

Hey guess which game I'm going to mention here? Go on guess. Smile

My breath was absolutely taken away when I reached Anor londo in dark souls, it was just so different to everything else you experienced before.

(Shall Spoiler tag the pic so its not ruined for Buska)

Spoiler:
 

Also loved the art style of Muramasa
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PostSubject: Re: It's... it's beautiful. (AKA the videogame graphics appreciation society)   Thu 27 Mar 2014 - 18:05

I adore Muramasa's style (although the less said about the Momohime v. octopus art the better). I may post some Okami art up too, since that is also beautiful.

masofdas wrote:
See what your saying about the genre of realistic racer's is a lot like the kids with JRPGS.

It's almost like people can have different tastes in games!
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PostSubject: Re: It's... it's beautiful. (AKA the videogame graphics appreciation society)   Thu 27 Mar 2014 - 18:12

The_Jaster wrote:
Hey guess which game I'm going to mention here? Go on guess. Smile

My breath was absolutely taken away when I reached Anor londo in dark souls, it was just so different to everything else you experienced before.

Totally agree - I think I spammed the "take screenshot" key when the opening cutscene into Anor Londo played. Dark Souls as a whole has a really washed out feel (intentional, considering everything is, y'know, dead) and then you're treated to that glorious vista with its sunset oranges and marble buildings.
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PostSubject: Re: It's... it's beautiful. (AKA the videogame graphics appreciation society)   Thu 27 Mar 2014 - 21:20

CONTROVERSY TIME

I didn't rate Okami's artwork that much, and that's because the tech wasn't up to it. What should have been all beautiful swooshes and what have you just looked like angular, blotchy messes because the systems didn't have the poly-pushing power to do the style justice.


Last edited by beemoh on Thu 27 Mar 2014 - 21:44; edited 1 time in total
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