the GTA series really isn't that open ended if you're being philosophical about it. all you can do is drive cars and shoot guns, and whilst you don't _have_ to do the missions, you can only advance if you do, and the missions themselves aren't open ended at all. if you don't do what the games designers intended - i.e. perform all the missions - then the game gets boring pretty quickly. and even after you win the story, there's not much else to do apart from run around and collect things. personally when i completed GTA3/VC all i did was reload the game and start over. it makes you think it's open ended but in fact it's not really. is non-linearity necessary? i don't think so. just because you don't have a choice in where you're going doesn't mean the game isn't fun.
I kinda like those life simulator games (with the exception of The Sims), until you win them a few times over and realise there's nothing more to do. Good ones are like Alter Ego and Virtua School, but they're a bit on the short side. I was thinking of making one simulating the 'life of a newbie', but never really got to making an editor for it.
But really, a complete life sim would be fun, provided you could fast forward. Get thrown in jail? You can always attempt to break out. You could beat people up, steal people's girlfriends, run for mayor/president, etc.
I consider life a game, only one that you can't load. If you try too hard not to lose, you never win anything. And you can't truly win or lose, just get better or worse than some others. When it's game over... you still get a "heaven, hell, or somewhere in between" ending.
Though technically, it's impossible to make a "perfect" game. No matter how good a game is, someone will hate it. Action/arcade players don't like complex RPGs, complex RPG players don't like action/arcade... it's impossible to please everyone. Though I guess after playing a game long enough, everyone will slide towards harder and harder games for a challenge, which either means an impossible action game or a complex RPG.
Personally, the closest thing I know to a perfect game is Baldur's Gate 2. It's got hundreds of hours of gameplay, and unlike Final Fantasy, the combats are fun. And the many types of characters you can get as followers mean that you can play it at least 3 times with very different story branches each time. Heck, since every character reacts differently to every other character, you could probably play it dozens of times and get different gameplay every time. The only thing I hate about it is that it's annoyingly addictive.
Disclaimer: Any sarcasm in my posts will not be mentioned as that would ruin the purpose. It is assumed that the reader is intelligent enough to tell the difference between what is sarcasm and what is not.
"Say you're hanging from a huge cliff at the top of mt. everest and a guy comes along and says he'll save you, and proceeds to throw religious pamphlets at you while simultaniously giving a sermon." - Dustin G
The perfect game? Dunno... I kinda agree with Muz, though.
What I love in games is physics. Ya know, ragdoll and that sorta stuff.
In most games you can't use physics to help you, well, I've tried pushing barrels at enemies in MP2, it works, and Far Cry, you can push crates at people there, and Gish(http://www.chroniclogic.com/gish/index.html) uses physics pretty well.
HF2 seems to use physics pretty well, you can pick up stuff and 'throw' at enemies, and push heavy objects in front of doors to keep enemies out...
Ya know. I love physics.
I love seing dead bodies tumble down stairs, and landing in awkvard positions... Mwahahaha!! Anyone with me?
...no? Well, I guess i'm just a sick, sick person then.
The content above makes absolutely no sense. But I guess you've already figured that out.
Im with simen. Farcry & 2 soldiers tend to create err.....interesting results....I'll get some screenies + Rolling barrels down hills into 4 or 5 enemies is fun. Seeing them all fly around too when i hit them with the buggy at high speed into boxes