Yeah, but I remember when game length was a selling point. My copy of SaGa Frontiers has a bullet-point on the back that says 'over 140 hours of gameplay!'.
Yeah, but you have to ask yourself what the game is making you do to get that 140hrs. A lot of JRPGs tend to garner their length through grinding. Very few games actually come close to keeping their hour promise. Skyrim provides hours of exploration alone, but even some people find it to be, "Raid a dungeon, grab up the loot, sell it, repeat." It can get like that, especially if you're looking for dragon shouts. No game will ever deliver the amount of hours it promises, not for me at least. If I have to do the same thing over and over again I've got to find something else to do.
Take X-Com for instance. It's got depth, and you could play it for hours, but some people would see it as the same cut and paste environs scrambled up, and losing half your people per terror mission. It's entirely possible, and they may never play it again. How people perceive their gaming experience has more to do with hours than any developer.
Speaking of X-Com. I was just thinking about it and a (not saying 50s era) X-Com FPS would be awesome. I'm not saying it would be the original, but a shooter in the universe would be this side of epic. I'll tell you why.
I was doing a terror mission in Rio. Luckily it was daytime. This is going to be primarily from the movement of one soldier a squadie codenamed "Ronin". That's what I do, I give code names.
Ronin takes the role of support in my squad. He carries the grenades and other stuff that would bog a sniper or heavy down. This makes him too important to be a scout obviously (poor bastards). Now Ronin has only been in one mission, a four man raid of a small UFO. Anyway, the hatch is down and the men and women begin to fan out and clear the LZ. My troops are presented with a new alien threat (Floaters). Still using Earth-tech assault rifles it takes them the whole turn to get it clear. Eventually it looks clear and the turn ends. Low and behold a grenade goes off (probably 0 primed). There goes six of the ten-man squad. Ronin's still alive. The squad now has one sharpshooter, two scouts with laser pistols, and Ronin.
The scout immediately sets upon a floater. A swift burst of auto fire from Ronin cuts it down. The scout advances fighting through the smoke and haze and Ronin guns down another two floaters with some luck, and a little help from the sharpshooter too. Well eventually more aliens than the team can handle show up and Ronin is out of bullets. He checks his belt, no clip. It looks like time is up for him when he spots a dead comrade by the loading ramp of the skyranger. Running to him he picks up a laser pistol and hunkers down behind the landing gear. With a coordinated effort they fend of the aliens. Ronin even takes a wound but keeps fighting.
I'd like to say it ended well, and the survivors returned to base, but the aliens hit the decimated squad with another grenade and everyone else was killed, Ronin fell unconscious, and then HQ lost the transmission.
So while I'm as excited as anyone for Enemy Unknown. I'm not going to be so narrow-viewed as to think that X-Com wouldn't make a good FPS. Now I don't really know if the 2K Marin game will pull it off, but if you took the strategy of X-Com and applied it to an FPS you'd get some interesting results.
A random jumble of missions for your soldier to undertake, doesn't have to be the same guy either. Perhaps work panic in their as screen shake or a loss of the aiming reticule. Your end of level ranking could influence your research into new tech and or funding for buying armor and upgrades. Some set pieces. If you get too badly shot up you're out for a month (though obviously you'd never see yourself in a hospital bed for the sake of gaming) and when you take your next mission things aren't so good as when you last left. The fear of your weapons not working against a muton or cyberdisk. Heck, even the ability to get psionics, or a flight suit. Highly-destructible environments.
I think it would be worth looking into, and if done right it could only broaden the appeal of the franchise. I'm hoping that the 2K Marin job is at least decent.