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FuturLab Laments Lack of Trophies in PlayStation Minis

Posted by Sammy Barker

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Trophies sell games, of that there is very little doubt. Licensed pap such as Hannah Montana: The Movie and Trivial Pursuit have enjoyed cynically long retail legs due to their mind-numbingly easy platinum trophies. That ability to drive sales should not be discredited, and FuturLab’s James Marsden believes the lack of digital rewards in Sony’s PlayStation Minis line is responsible for turning most engaged gamers off the cross-compatible platform.

Speaking with TheSixthAxis, Marsden explained:

Lack of trophies in Minis is probably the single biggest turn-off for most gamers. At least that’s the impression we get from feedback on our games.

FuturLab's Velocity ran away with our recent game of the month vote, but despite achieving critical acclaim from all over the web, it's forced to stand out amongst a growing library of feature-rich PSN experiences. Marsden believes the lack of network compatibility in Minis is also a deterrent.

He continued:

The second most asked for feature of Minis is networking ability. Also demos – if all three of these things were included in Minis, it would make sales rocket.

Marsden concluded that MotorStorm RC is an ideal example of where the Minis platform should go, as “it suits a portable device and is able to use the connected features to its advantage”.

We think the developer’s got a very valid point, and we hope the upcoming PlayStation Mobile learns heavily from the mistakes of the Minis format. Would you buy more of the bite-sized titles if they included trophies and online leaderboards?

[via thesixthaxis.com]

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User Comments (11)

Gemuarto

#1

Gemuarto said:

100% agree with him =). I don't buy minis because there no triphies in them =)))... But in their nature minis are created to have trophies and leaderboards more than any other PSN games.

rjejr

#2

rjejr said:

In my mind if Mini's had demos, networking, and trophies, then they wouldn't be mini's, they would be $10 PSN games. These are supposed to be cheap quickie games, hence none of the above.
I'ld think the biggest detriment to Mini sales would be the wide diversity that minis cover. Velocity is an awesome game, and in my mind not a mini. But then you get the iOS games, like stretching giraffe necks and other 1 button trash that are barely playable even for a minute. Velocity is probably worthy of trophies, but not that giraffe game.
Personally I would never buy a Mini, but as a PS+ member I think I've gotten a couple dozen. Most are garbage. Giving them trophies or multiplayer wouldn't make them any less so. If I were a developer making a halfway decent "game" I'ld forgo the mini format entirely.

Squiggle55

#4

Squiggle55 said:

I wish minis had trophies. But then if minis had trophies and networking, I would be even more confused why PSN games don't work on my Vita.

KALofKRYPTON

#5

KALofKRYPTON said:

I think if you won't play a game because it doesn't have trophies you deserve to spend your time trophy hoarding crap movie tie-ins for the rest of time!

MadchesterManc

#6

MadchesterManc said:

@KALofKRYPTON HAHA agree with you there. Ive been gameing since the Atari2600 so I dont see this fascination with trophy hunting. If I get a trophy, great, If I dont, who cares? Personnally I dont think minis need trophys. There cheap, bite-sized gaming goodness and they'd still be the same with trophys so it makes no difference. The problem minis have is there lack of coverage. I dont see much ino on most sites, except for the odd review on here. I dont mean to sound harsh as Velocity is a top mini but if the developers have grown beyond the limitations of the minis platform, they could look into moving up to releasing a PSN title.

IrishYort

#7

IrishYort said:

Hey Sammy good article.

I however think the biggest deal right now for the PS Vita Minis is the lack of the "BUY" feature! This game has been out for about a month all over the world and it still is not available on the PSVita Store in NA. What's up
with that?!

KALofKRYPTON

#8

KALofKRYPTON said:

@MadchesterManc
I was more a 128k Speccy bloke . . . ;-)

They mean nothing to me really. Nice feature, but in the 6 years I've had my PS3 I've never gone out of my way to earn a Platinum- in fact, Resistance Burning Skies on the Vita is my first Platinum trophy! Some of the trophies are a good challenge to help the longevity of a game, others are arbitrary hoarding quests with little fun involved. It's a nice badge to show that you've gone through an entire game every which-way, but ultimately meaningless. I play a game until I'm bored, end of really.

Stuffgamer1

#9

Stuffgamer1 said:

@KALofKRYPTON: I feel compelled to inform you that not EVERYONE who ignores games due (at least in part) to lack of Trophy support plays every random crap licenced game for easy Trophies. No doubt I love me some Trophies, but I still only play games I wanted to play anyway.

@MadchesterManc: The way you worded that implies that nobody who grew up gaming decades ago should care about Trophies, but I don't think that's fair. I grew up playing NES and SNES, but that didn't stop me from falling in love with the Trophy system. Sure, some developers don't know how to use it right, but when done well, it's a great way to add value (however contrived) to playtime.

With all that said, though, I must agree with rjejr; the biggest problem with Minis is that most of them SUCK! I too get them through PS Plus and VERY rarely buy them, which is just as well because they're so bad. Either that, or all the good ones are never on Plus...dunno. I liked Shift Extend.

SilentJ

#10

SilentJ said:

Personally, I'm happy to play a game I really want to play regardless if it has trophies or not. I play my PSP all the time and it doesn't support trophies at all. I've been gaming since Atari 2600 as well and wasn't introduced to trophies until 2008 but that doesn't stop me from liking them. Clearly, trophies aren't for everyone but I do feel they add more replay value to games.

As for minis, there are a few I really enjoyed like Alien Zombie Death, Cubixx, Velocity, Shift Extended, and a few others but a lot of them aren't all that great imo.

KALofKRYPTON

#11

KALofKRYPTON said:

@Stuffgamer1

Not saying they are. But the way some people go on you'd think the game itself wasn't important. I know a couple of types of hoarder. The kind who will play any old movie tie in/kids game to bump up trophy and gamer scores, and the true completist, people who are really compelled to make sure everything's done.

Don't get me wrong. I'm in no way against trophies and achievements, but in the context of Minis they don't make sense. Cheap, short downloadables for quick fun and those on a budget. In terms of content, it comes down to how the developer sees their game. I for one would say that for the sheer genius of the gameplay Velocity should've been a straight PSN title, with trophy support. But the problem there comes down to price.

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