Sunday, May 4, 2008

Let's Get This Party Started Already

Here's the thing about "this and that should be rare" and cognitive dissonance time investment thingies.

The roleplaying games that use them too much suck.

And the roleplaying games that you don't even notice them in are the really good ones where you actually feel like you've enjoyed most of what the game has to offer.

Y'know, think of all the really good computer roleplaying games.

And how you could play them twenty different ways, or at least play them once and be pretty sure that you got to enjoy pretty much everything that went into 'em.

Hello Fallout, hello Arcanum, hello Daggerfall and Morrowind and Vampire Bloodlines and KotOR and whatever.

And the Thief games are a good example of the good kind of "one role" roleplaying games.

And then think of all the games you played where you felt like you never even got to see half of the content because they put it behind some annoying barrier in order to make something seem more "valuable" or hard-won.

Hello MMOs ahaha.

One is professional and the other is amatuer.

One is making the most of its content and all the work that went into it, and getting its players into it, and the other is making most of its content and all the work that went into it disappear, half the stuff might as well not even exist ahaha.

Its just something that's been bouncing around in my head lately, but I started thinking about it from some of the more "open-ended" mods for NWN that were really ponderous (as if I had a month to waste wandering around aimlessly in one guy's game, looking for fun stuff to do, when there's thousands to try).

There's a disease that a lot of game devs get where they overdo it with that stuff.

Which reminds me of the way I needed to speed things up when I was hacking around in Mount&Blade to get to the good stuff ('cause I had to test my stupid crap like six million times, and there were ten thousand other mods for people to play, so why should I waste our time with junk that we were bound to get somewhere else, y'know?), and that made me think about creating more good stuff to do.

Which reminds me of something Dundee said a long time ago about having a game with no levels 'cause he was sick to death of making new characters in MMOs, like, take me to the end-game and spend all your energy on making the end-game really good, if you can't do that, then all you are really doing is lying to us and pretending that you do know how to do that with all this dangling carrot stuff anyways heh.

Which reminds me of the way some folks have that MMO malaise thingie right now, because they've been bitten by that dog too many times to keep fooling themselves.

Not that time-investment is all totally bad or anything, y'know, everything is just a tool, it all depends on what you do with it.

You were investing time in Fallout, too, y'know, you just didn't notice it 'cause Fallout gave you tons of fun shit to do while you were investing your time into it heh.

I'm not totally into "going directly to an end-game" and having no progression of player power (although I'm not totally against it, either), there's a lot of cool stuff you can do within that, and the NDA thingie I was just talking about a minute ago is all about the "journey" being the "fun" and its totally dependent on that stuff, levelling really slow might be okay as long as there was a good reason for it and it wasn't totally boring to be Level 2 'cause there was plenty of Level 2 stuff to do or something, y'know?

It could be good to be Level 2, it all depends on exactly what being Level 2 is all about, and how different it is from Level 1 and Level 3 heh.

And I think you need to maintain some mystery about your world, you need to keep the edges fuzzy, a place that is totally figured out with no more surprises up its sleeves is just plain boring, so "barrier" and "chaos theory" stuff for those sorta purpose is totally okay with me, but I just thought I'd do the "exercise on the side of caution" bit anyways.

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