Are today's gamers too soft?

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Post: #31
I was thinking of Halo's kind of approach at this.... The save points weren't too close together, and I also had to be smart about how I reached those save points because you want to have enough health and weaponry to make it the end of the level. But if I get 'stuck' at a save point like I said, I can still go back to the beginning of the level without completely restarting the game. Also, since your progress is automatically saved, you can quit at anytime and go back to your last save point. If you want to be a little less lenient you could just throw them back to the beginning of the level.

Also, if you design your game to take a while to beat, this is a must. No one's gonna sit and play a super hard version of Mario for 3 days straight without turning off their machine (Well some people, but not many). Anyway, I think that the concept of 'lives' is outdated for all but the simpler games (ie. arcade games, retro games, etc.). If your designing a game that's very deep and has much to explore, then lives will really take away from the game play. If your designing a Pac Man remake or a simple platformer, then lives are probably critical to keeping gamers' interested.

On another note, games which show the kind of save point thing I'm talking about would be Syphon Filter, Legend of the Dragoon, and also, those of you who've played Legacy of Kain:Soul Reaver, I think that was a rather interesting method. Also, something else I think is kinda cool sometimes is when you have to go backwards to maybe, open a door that was waay in the beginning of the game now that you have a key. Or maybe cross a lava pit now that you have immunity to it, or something. Anyone who's played the game Shadow Man know what I'm talking about (not exactly a great game but it illustrates this concept very well).
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Post: #32
CubeFusion Wrote:I don't know about the rest of you, but I only tolerate one hit-kills in games when there is a valid reason for it.
...
If it looks like the enemy poses a real physical threat, then no reasonable player will have a problem with instant kills. Simple as that.

I agree with Pat Methany... er, I mean, this guy.

Good way of putting it, it expresses my thoughts exactly.

Anyone remember the tiny little things from Out of this World in the first level? I bet everyone died from them the first time through, but the animation indicated quite clearly why I couldn't touch them - they lashed out at me and stuck me with a pin prick of poison, killing me real good. It also made me realize this game was different, unique.

When it's justified, I don't mind one-hit kills.

KB Productions, Car Care for iPhone/iPod Touch
@karlbecker_com
All too often, art is simply the loss of practicality.
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DM6
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Post: #33
Quote:You seem to have misunderstood me. In this situation, it would probably be better if the ghost opened his gaping mouth and swallowed Mrs Pac-Man whole. I don't like the idea of running from the ghosts just because they are there, maybe the whole reason they are chasing her is because she looks like a giant pizza and they are hungry?
....
The idea I am trying to get across is that a player is far more likely to "accept" his characters death when there is a good reason for it. If they see a logical reason for their characters untimely death then chances are they won't get as frustrated

phydeaux brings up a good point to caution you about realism. But I think it even goes beyond that issue: you don't seem to want realism so much as you want certainty about the game environment. But here's my question for you: how many times have you seen a film, or a really good RPG, or a story or a poem where they don't tell you the whole story, and as a result it confuses you and you feel that there's so much more to the imaginary environment than is actually being told? I understand that most people play games to escape from the world, but isn't it kind of a let-down when someone tells you the whole story, like you've been sold short, like you haven't invested anything of yourself in the experience? You don't have to understand it all; putting (effective and deliberate) elements of uncertainty in games makes them richer and more interesting because they remind us of our own world and how we can never be certain of the nature of our own environment.
I know this seems like a trivial point in terms of Ms. Pac-Man's unrealistic death animation, but even though it bothered your rational mind, didn't it touch your imagination a little? Didn't you wonder what it was the designers were trying to say with it?

-Duncan
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Post: #34
funkboy Wrote:When it's justified, I don't mind one-hit kills.

I think everyone is in agreement on this, but the argument is over what exactly "justifies" one-hit kills.

IMO, gameplay 100% justifies it. If it's more fun if Pacman or Joe Spacecad dies in one hit, then that's the way it's gonna be. I don't believe that it must also be visually/aurally justified with acid trails and death animations. It's simply funnier to watch Ms. Pacman go belly up.

Where I start to get bothered on this issue is when it comes to consistency. If you're going to kill me in one hit, don't even tease me with a health bar. Take it out completely and use that precious UI space for something worth keeping track of. Having a health bar tells me that I can take several hits, and that I can use the first hit as a judge of how many times I'm allowed to screw up on this particular obstacle.

Also, I would say the relative power of the enemies should be kept consistent. If Joe Spacecad steps off the ship with his health bar and the first thing he sees is the blob, not only should it not kill him in one hit, it should take out less health than say a three-headed alien crocodile with laser eyes.

A real world example: In the NES Ninja Gaiden (I really don't like this game) you have a health bar. Getting hit by ninjas, barbarians, thrown axes, or Jason Vorhees himself takes out one health unit. Getting hit by a normal bird takes three. The only other enemy that takes out three health units is the final boss which is some really bad-ass demon from the pits of Hell. Bogus and stupid.

The key is making the rules clear from the start, and staying consistent throughout your game. (And somewhere in there, make it fun.)

Justin Ficarrotta
http://www.justinfic.com
"It is better to be The Man than to work for The Man." - Alexander Seropian
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Post: #35
I see no reason to not cater to the gamer's desires. After reading the excellent book "Gender Inclusive Design", I learned that female players prefer forgiving games. Being forced to restart after dying is just a really, really bad design decision. You want to keep the gamers immersed and playing the game. In that aspect, pushing the gamer out of the game, making them fight their way back into the game, and then having them back-track through a part of the game they already finished is very contra-productive.

For El Ballo, for instance, we wanted to go with the retro style of play, in which it is fine to be cruel to the player. Still, if it had been entirely my design and we had wanted to create a "modern" game, I would have employed a system where you got placed back at the place you died. Punishing the player is soo 90's. Smile

Then again, it depends on the game. Sometimes, it doesn't make sense to move the player back, because it has no logical incarnation. (How do you do this in Tetris, for example? How many lines do you remove?) So, my answer to the first post would be to do what feels right, but if the players complain that the game is annoying, you can't make them "re-think". Smile
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Post: #36
Fenris Wrote:I see no reason to not cater to the gamer's desires.

I guess as there are many gamers they have many desires so tailoring the game to 'modern' do not upset anyone type upsets those who enjoy the good old fashioned games and vice versa.

Fenris Wrote:After reading the excellent book "Gender Inclusive Design", I learned that female players prefer forgiving games.

Don't fall for that mistake of stereotypes whatever you do! Just because they are female does not mean they do not have the same tastes in entertainment as males.

Fenris Wrote:Punishing the player is soo 90's. Smile
So the games of the 70's and 80's were just so ahead of their times then Wink


Fenris Wrote:So, my answer to the first post would be to do what feels right, but if the players complain that the game is annoying, you can't make them "re-think". Smile

I guess for every player who complains there are two who enjoy it as it is always the dissatisfied that are most vocal.
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Post: #37
Quote: I guess as there are many gamers they have many desires so tailoring the game to 'modern' do not upset anyone type upsets those who enjoy the good old fashioned games and vice versa.
If that were true, you and me wouldn't be swearing over "soft" gamers, would we? :-/

Quote:Don't fall for that mistake of stereotypes whatever you do! Just because they are female does not mean they do not have the same tastes in entertainment as males.
Of course not. Smile Still, according to Sheri, (who has to be considered The Authority on the subject, it's enough of a difference to make a truckload of extra money from it. (The law of diminishing returns comes into play). However, that's OT, and I'll drop it here. Yet, the interesting part is that both males and females tend to like the "female" play type. Therefore, there is only profit to be made from a more relaxed gameplay.

Quote:So the games of the 70's and 80's were just so ahead of their times then
I was born in -83, old man. I can't even fathom what the world was like back then. Wasn't it hard to cook food using nothing but sticks? :-P Making fun of the older & wiser aside, I still think it depends on the game type. (As with any design descision.) I've recently gone over my planned designs and found that quite a few of them would be more fun if I remove some of the "evil" challenges from them, such as resetting the level on player death and so on.

Interesting discussion, this.
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Post: #38
Not wanting to go too off topic about this, but last night I got a perfect demonstration of old school back to the start games being fun. While I was trying out the Blind entries (useful if it is nice and quiet Wink ) I got disturbed by lots of laughter and other sounds of people enjoying playing a video game.

So what was it?

My wife and her friend (also female) were going through some of the games on one of those 99 classic arcade games consols. A collection of 99 possible uDG entry ideas...

So not all female gamers love The Sims Wink


Quote:I was born in -83, old man.
You mean after ROTJ? Wow that is young Wink
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Post: #39
Fenris Wrote:If that were true, you and me wouldn't be swearing over "soft" gamers, would we? :-/

It is the soft gamers who whinge. For every one gamer who complains there may be hundreds who actually enjoy the game. That is the hard thing to tell. All the interest in retro games shows there must be some interest.
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Post: #40
Quote:So not all female gamers love The Sims
You needn't tell me that. Smile I've spent innumerable hours on my GF's rig trying to get the most out of CounterStrike for her. Still, according to the research Sheri made, most female player prefer a more lenient mode of game. However, that is blatantly off-topic. Smile
Quote:All the interest in retro games shows there must be some interest.
Hear, hear! That is dang true. (Even if I'm not too sure that cruelty to gamers is what they are looking for. Or is this the masochist wave in gaming? This has to be researched!)
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Post: #41
Fenris Wrote:Hear, hear! That is dang true. (Even if I'm not too sure that cruelty to gamers is what they are looking for. Or is this the masochist wave in gaming? This has to be researched!)

Where does one apply for funding into such research?

Now I think about it, the retro games machine is the only game I've bought in the last 6 months so nice and friendly games developers have made £0 from me this year compared to the £29.99 for the retro pain Wink

Maybe we should have a poll to see if people actually do like these type of games or not.

Ivan, I think I should get in touch with you about assiting in the writing of this article about this stuff.
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Lucis-Gladius
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Post: #42
Hello all !

After reading in the news paper about Video-Game Manhunt, I had some serious conversations about games in general with all sorts of people.

Somewhere in this thread I wrote something like this:,, After preforming a certain action 200 times in simulation, a particular person might feel like doing this in real life."

These things do really happen, but a bad person would still continiu doing bad things even if he didn`t have the video game. So its not the developer`s fault, but the custommer`s for letting things get out of hand. Lets put it this way, violence is bad it spoils your mentality, no-one should invest money in promoting violence to their custommers, its feeding minds with the wrong information. Instead of promoting destruction, why not make a game thats creative !!!!

I think the best idea for game development is to never go beyond a "Medium level of violence". Oh man this is so important; Did anyone ever notice that the sounds a video game generates can be very disturbing to the custommers mental state ?! When making a computer game, try "not" to make it sound like a mad house ! Wouldn`t it be a mile stone if a game engine would actualy make the person that plays it relaxed ?! ?! ?!

Later
Alex.
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Post: #43
Lucis-Gladius Wrote:When making a computer game, try "not" to make it sound like a mad house ! Wouldn`t it be a mile stone if a game engine would actualy make the person that plays it relaxed ?! ?! ?!
Well, sure. And now when I play pikmin I'm relaxed, and the game makes more relaxed. But I surely want games to be filled action, so that I can get my adrenaline pumping and concentrate really hard(Viewtiful Joe or Ikaruga for example). Sure, I want games that make me relaxed, but if you don't give me some action gamesÖ What I might do!(seriously, I think games is(and can) be used to vent anger and get an adrenaline rush(instead of doing bad things with the cravings for rushes).)

"Gameplay Uber Alles. And if you can make it psychedelic too, great!" - Jeff Minter
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Lucis-Gladius
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Post: #44
Hi, I read your reply.

Lets talk about Action games, there is a difference between artistic action & violent action. Example:

Jedi-Knight is an engine that offers an artistic way of using the light saber, it took me a year or more to master different levels of light saber skills. Thats not destructivity but creativity.

Battlefield is the only war game that has my aproval, I play the game since Bf1942 came out in Holland, currently I`m still playing D.C. 7.0. The game is about war/destruction, but its much more difficult then that; It took me over a year of practicing trying to controll all different weapons & vehicles, Example:

1)- Chopper piloting needs atleast 300 test runs before understanding the vehicle, then try to take off and land the chopper, thats not destructivity, thats being artistic.

2)- Same for the Artilery, it is said the M-109 Howitzer got the most destructive shot. But try to bring the artilery to the highest point in the map barrel facing downwards, after receiving the co-ordinates from the scout its time to adapt the artilery to the target. Remember not all targets will be possible to take out, a target can be too low or too high or just simply out of range, but "not" if you bring the artilery to the right location. Thats not destructivity, but creativity.

Now, try making all those issues mentioned above relaxing, thats what I`m hoping to accomplish with my game design <<Purple|Star>>.

K, have fun !
Alex.
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Post: #45
Lucis-Gladius Wrote:Hi, I read your reply.

Lets talk about Action games, there is a difference between artistic action & violent action. Example:

Jedi-Knight is an engine that offers an artistic way of using the light saber, it took me a year or more to master different levels of light saber skills. Thats not destructivity but creativity.

Battlefield is the only war game that has my aproval, I play the game since Bf1942 came out in Holland, currently I`m still playing D.C. 7.0. The game is about war/destruction, but its much more difficult then that; It took me over a year of practicing trying to controll all different weapons & vehicles, Example:

1)- Chopper piloting needs atleast 300 test runs before understanding the vehicle, then try to take off and land the chopper, thats not destructivity, thats being artistic.

2)- Same for the Artilery, it is said the M-109 Howitzer got the most destructive shot. But try to bring the artilery to the highest point in the map barrel facing downwards, after receiving the co-ordinates from the scout its time to adapt the artilery to the target. Remember not all targets will be possible to take out, a target can be too low or too high or just simply out of range, but "not" if you bring the artilery to the right location. Thats not destructivity, but creativity.

Now, try making all those issues mentioned above relaxing, thats what I`m hoping to accomplish with my game design <<Purple|Star>>.
Most good action games seem to be "artistic" in some way, like take the examples I wrote about. In Viewtiful Joe you really must master your abilities both in puzzels(sp?) and combat, I've played it pretty much and it took me long time to complete it on normal difficulty. Or take Ikaruga, where you must plan ahead how to complete a level to stand a chance for some good points(mainly by the so called chain combos where you must hit a same colored enemy again and again(ie a new one each time)). Or take Street Fighter 2, I played that game alot- it took some skill make me able to know precisly(sp?) and be able to precisly(sp?) when I was going to do diffrent combos etc. When is it destructive and when is it creative?

I agree with you on some levels, it would be great to able to play a more indrawing(can't find the right wordÖ) but relaxed gameÖ But I also like to feel my heart pumping as I run around in dark corridors planning how to avoid and be able to kill the aliens in Aliens Vs Predator.

"Gameplay Uber Alles. And if you can make it psychedelic too, great!" - Jeff Minter
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