Forums

Topic: Are Game Demos Worthwhile?

Posts 1 to 11 of 11

Th3solution

I wonder about the community's thoughts and experiences with game demos, like the kind you download to try a game before you buy. I have experienced demos and betas to be pretty helpful, but I also wonder if they could be harmful by giving you a false impression of a game.
In my experience, demos have sometimes actually stopped me from buying a game that I thought I wanted. But also, sometimes they have absolutely convinced me to buy one that I may not have been planning to buy.
For example, I was intrigued by Nier Automata and downloaded the demo a few months ago and (get your torches and pitchforks ready) ... I just didn't really like it. I couldn't really get into the story or gameplay and so I never have bought it. A keep seeing the glowing accolades and I wonder — what did I miss? Perhaps I would like the full game if I gave it a chance. But I just can't bring myself to buy a game that I didn't enjoy during the hour or so I played of it.
An opposite example that I remember having was Bioshock. I had no I interest really in it (I'm not into FPS games), but I tried the Bioshock demo on PS3 and was so mesmerized by Rapture that I couldn't stop thinking about it until I bought the game. And now Bioshock and Bioshock Infinite are probably in my top 20 of all time.

Edited on by Th3solution

The early bird gets the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.

kyleforrester87

The Nier demo was awesome and absolutely sold me on that game. If you didn't like the demo (you crazy!!) it's probably not worth getting the full game. But in my opinion the game in its entirety is incredible. MGS2 had an amazing demo too, the rest of the game didn't quite live up to the section they demoed but I've come to appreciate it all with time.

The worst demo I ever played was Dead Space. Put me off buying the game for ages. Glad I decided to give it a go eventually.

I can see why demos arnt popular now. I expect they generally put more people off a product than they attract.

I do like how they are recently releasing timed demos for games once they've been out a few months though.

Edited on by kyleforrester87

kyleforrester87

PSN: WigSplitter1987

Th3solution

@kyleforrester87 I know! I don't know what's wrong with me! I found Nier Automata's demo to be a bit bland and when there was the dramatic moment at the end, I just found myself not really caring about the two characters. I'm not sure if that section of the game was the actual beginning but it felt like it was not and that I was missing something. Maybe that's the problem. A timed trial I think is a better option to really get a good feel for the game.

Other demos that made me not care to buy the game — Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance, DmC: Devil May Cry, and Destiny. Well, Destiny was actually a beta since it's an online MP game only (same basic premise of a free demo as well as a way to stir up interest though, and to work out bugs), but I felt so "meh" after playing it that I lost all interest.
One example of a beta that absolutely catapulted a game into popularity I think was Overwatch. It was a mere curiosity until the beta and then it just exploded with popularity. I think part of demos, timed trials, and open betas is to create buzz and sell games (obviously) and some game publishers do it well, and some fail.

The early bird gets the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.

BAMozzy

Funnily enough, I used to love getting 'demos' and the odd free game with some gaming magazines. I don't tend to buy magazines anymore but years ago, they used to have a 'disc' of demo's and stuff. Some of those did lead to purchases of the full game and my 'kids' enjoyed playing the demo discs too.

Nowadays, I don't ever bother with Demos even though they are more accessible with the online access. Years ago, demo's were really only available with magazines but now, you just download any you want, when you want.

As far as 'Betas' go, I rarely bother with them. I did with Destiny but then when Destiny arrived, I felt I had played a quarter of it. I know it was to a degree a quarter, but with the rest of the Strikes and Raid - plus all the character levelling and Exotics to collect, it ended up being a fraction but it still felt like I had 'explored most of what Destiny offered. Only Venus and Mars were 'new' to me. I didn't bother with Destiny 2's beta - even though I pre-ordered the Limited Edition. I don't know if I will bother with CoD:WW2, despite pre-ordering the Pro edition.

With the internet, and sites like PushSquare, I really don't feel the need to play Demos. A small part of that is down to my 'backlog' and if I am gaming, its usually a game I have - not a 'demo' of something I'm not sure I will buy. Going back to the internet and this site, I can find much more 'relevant' information about a game, generally much more than buying a 'monthly' magazine can offer with 'static' pics. Now I can read multiple 'hands-on' impressions, multiple reviews, speak to people in forums and watch video's of the game-play. I know its not quite the same as 'Hands-on' like a demo offers but having gamed for ~40yrs (yes I am old!!), I tend to know what I want, what I like and whether or not I am likely to get much 'value' from a game. But if all those reviews, video's and talking to others on sites like this hasn't convinced me, I am not actively going to seek out a 'demo'. With PS+ and Gold, that's a possible 6 games a month I could play and if there are '6' games I want to download, the chances are they were not 'important' to me at 'release'. Add those into my Backlog of games I 'could' play, then Demo's are not something I am going to bother with...

A pessimist is just an optimist with experience!

Why can't life be like gaming? Why can't I restart from an earlier checkpoint??

Feel free to add me but please send a message so I know where you know me from...

PSN: TaimeDowne

Th3solution

@BAMozzy Well said. That seems to be my feeling as well. The Nier Automata demo was my first in a long while. I just usually would rather be playing something that's sitting in my backlog.

As opposed to 6 or 7 years ago, I have the disposable income now (although not too much, mind you) to take more chances buying a game versus when you don't make any money, you have to just play whatever you can and if you buy then you have to be guaranteed it's a game you will love.
Your reminiscing about demo discs reminds me of another fossil of video gaming — the strategy guide. Haha, I know they still exist, but they are pretty rare now. Most walkthroughs and hints, tricks, and guides are plentiful on the web. No need to plop down another $20 just to be able to find all the secrets hidden in that JRPG.

The early bird gets the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.

BAMozzy

@Th3solution Don't forget all the little books of cheat codes and secrets too that gaming magazines had. Prima game guides still exist but now you can just watch a video or find some site on the web that tells you where any collectibles, easter eggs etc are. Cheat codes seem to have disappeared now though...

Its not so much that I don't have 'time' to play demos anymore or would rather be playing games from my backlog, its just that there is less need for demos because we have much more access to various reviews and video's of game-play. We can watch the whole game being played nowadays so its not as if we don't get an idea of what the game offers. It was more difficult to know how games ran and whether or not a game would appeal when you only had monthly magazines which cost money, trying to describe the game-play and static screenshots - often quite small - trying to show what the game looked like. When you compare their description and screen-shots to what you got, it could be quite different. Compare that to a 1-2min game-play video. In that time, you have seen exactly what the graphics look like, got a good idea of what the game-play will be like and even an idea as to whether or not it appeals - no need of a demo. If that 'video' is unconvincing, no doubt you can read hundreds of reviews - not just the one in a magazine you bought and 'maybe' that reviewer had a 'different preference than you so their score doesn't equate to your preference. You could also watch countless other 'game-play' video's and know whether a game is going to appeal to you.

10yrs ago, most couldn't watch E3 and our only way to get any news from E3 was via magazines. You weren't able to watch the game-play trailers they showed off and at most, 1-2 pictures per game. Demo's were the only way to actually see a game in motion so they were more important. People nowadays can make a decision within a few minutes of a game-play video as to whether the game is for them....

A pessimist is just an optimist with experience!

Why can't life be like gaming? Why can't I restart from an earlier checkpoint??

Feel free to add me but please send a message so I know where you know me from...

PSN: TaimeDowne

WanderingBullet

I like game demos since they help me decide on I want to buy or pre-order certain games that I'm on the fence about. So yeah, the more demos or betas the better. What I don't I like are pre-order bonuses that provide you with early or exclusive access to demos or betas.

Huntin' monsters erryday.

Fight_Sora_Fight

I don't really play or download demos. Think the last time I played one was either on PS1 because I had nothing to play or some demo for PC that came in a game-mag way back in the day.

If i'm undecided about a game I usually watch some video reviews on YouTube or watch a let's play of the game. I can't really get behind demos, because in the back of my mind I'd be thinking: 'you've cherry picked a section of the game, to sell me the game'.
I guess it's good for those that just want a feel of the game.

Lives, Lived, Will Live.
Dies, Died, Will Die.
If we could perceive time for what it really was,
What reason would Grammar Professors have to get out of bed?- Robert & Rosalind Lutece

themcnoisy

I always grab the fifa and pes demos as its a kind of event in my house. Its the one day of the year we will play footy games.

As for other demos as alluded to above theres no point as my backlog is omnipresent. Back in the 90s demos were useful as you found some hidden gems, pushsquare can do that legwork for me these days.

Forum Best Game of All Time Awards

Multiplat 2018: Horizon Zero Dawn
Nintendo 2017: Super Mario Bros 3
Playstation 2016: Uncharted 2
Multiplat 2015: Final Fantasy 7

PSN: mc_noisy

Rudy_Manchego

Yeah demos used to be amazing - I remember playing some levels over and over again in the 90's because I couldn't afford the full game. Now though, I don't bother with demos and rarely with betas. I guess I know enough with trailers and videos, as well as gaming sites.

Now I may be an idiot, but there's one thing I am not sir, and that sir, is an idiot

https://jambags.co.uk

PSN: Rudy_Manchego | Twitter:

kyleforrester87

Bravely Default 1 and 2 had awesome demos. They were basically 5-10 hour games set in the world of the main game but unrelated to that story. They were basically free pre-release expansion packs :/

Edited on by kyleforrester87

kyleforrester87

PSN: WigSplitter1987

Top

  • Pages:
  • 1

This topic has been archived, no further posts can be added.