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Difficulty Setting


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Vert1
Joined: Aug 28 2011
PostPosted: Sep 06 2012 05:14 pm Reply with quote Back to top

Quote:
Many games are ruined by developers' desire to ensure they're accessible to as many players as possible, according to Alex Hutchinson - the lead designer on Edge 245 cover star Assassin's Creed III.

“A lot of games have been ruined by easy modes. If you have a cover shooter and you switch it to easy and you don’t have to use cover, you kind of broke your game.”

“You made a game that is essentially the worst possible version of your game.”


Quote:
Lead gameplay designer Steven Masters chimes in to stress that, in spite of this position on easy modes, the team's goal isn't to make a challenge of each passing moment in the game, but to make sure they are passed well.


source: http://www.edge-online.com/news/assassins-creed-iii-devs-easy-mode-often-ruins-games


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LeshLush
Joined: Oct 19 2009
Location: Nashville, TN
PostPosted: Sep 06 2012 10:24 pm Reply with quote Back to top

This puts you in quite the quandary. On the one hand, easy mode is of the devil and should be killed with fire. On the other hand, cover shooters are played by Dave Matthews fans and pedophiles, so finding a way to eliminate the use of cover should be the video game equivalent of sex with Rumours era Stevie Nicks.
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Vert1
Joined: Aug 28 2011
PostPosted: Oct 06 2012 05:53 pm Reply with quote Back to top

Even Atlus is giving in the casuals by adding a casual difficulty option. I don't understand who would buy the fourth version of a game for casual mode.

Quote:
While Etrian Odyssey series is known for being hardcore, the game has a casual mode for newcomers. Casual mode takes you back to town if you die instead of ending the game and gives you an item that lets you warp to town at anytime. Etrian Odyssey IV: Legends of the Titan is slated for release in early 2013.


source: the-magicbox.com


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Preng
Title: All right, that's cool!
Joined: Jan 11 2010
Location: Accounting Dept.
PostPosted: Oct 06 2012 06:01 pm Reply with quote Back to top

I am not familiar with Etrian Odyssey, though this sounds like a nice inclusion for a purchaser who's been a fan of the series, yet has less time to play video games due to the presence of other life events like work.
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Greg the White
Joined: Apr 09 2008
Location: Pennsylvania
PostPosted: Oct 06 2012 06:09 pm Reply with quote Back to top

Vert1 wrote:
Even Atlus is giving in the casuals by adding a casual difficulty option. I don't understand who would buy the fourth version of a game for casual mode.

Quote:
While Etrian Odyssey series is known for being hardcore, the game has a casual mode for newcomers. Casual mode takes you back to town if you die instead of ending the game and gives you an item that lets you warp to town at anytime. Etrian Odyssey IV: Legends of the Titan is slated for release in early 2013.


source: the-magicbox.com

If they still have its normal difficulty, then why is an inclusive difficulty such a problem? God forbid someone who doesn't have tons of hours to stuff into a game is still allowed to appreciate all of its other facets.


So here's to you Mrs. Robinson. People love you more- oh, nevermind.
 
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Vert1
Joined: Aug 28 2011
PostPosted: Oct 06 2012 06:29 pm Reply with quote Back to top

Read the top post. These dumbed down difficulties strip the game of its soul; i.e. its difficulty. It's like designing the "worst version of your game". Atlus is wasting their time adding it.

If you don't have a lot of time I wouldn't recommend buying any Etrian Odyssey game. Those games are addicting.


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Beach Bum
Joined: Dec 08 2010
Location: At the pants party.
PostPosted: Oct 06 2012 06:30 pm Reply with quote Back to top

Greg the White wrote:
Vert1 wrote:
Even Atlus is giving in the casuals by adding a casual difficulty option. I don't understand who would buy the fourth version of a game for casual mode.

Quote:
While Etrian Odyssey series is known for being hardcore, the game has a casual mode for newcomers. Casual mode takes you back to town if you die instead of ending the game and gives you an item that lets you warp to town at anytime. Etrian Odyssey IV: Legends of the Titan is slated for release in early 2013.


source: the-magicbox.com

If they still have its normal difficulty, then why is an inclusive difficulty such a problem? God forbid someone who doesn't have tons of hours to stuff into a game is still allowed to appreciate all of its other facets.

It is a problem because video games are only for hardcore people with infinite amounts of free time. Can't have these casuals showing up and ruining it for everyone with their prior commitments and lack of free time.
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Cactus
Joined: Oct 05 2012
Location: UK
PostPosted: Oct 07 2012 07:25 am Reply with quote Back to top

Personally, I like it when a game has a wide range of difficulty settings so that anyone can find a level they're comfortable with. If I find myself playing a racing game, I know I'm grateful if there's some kind of casual mode even though I usually feel confindent starting on the highest difficulty in most action-type games.
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Greg the White
Joined: Apr 09 2008
Location: Pennsylvania
PostPosted: Oct 07 2012 02:17 pm Reply with quote Back to top

Right. I like fighting games, but I don't love them enough to look up the most esoteric strategies and terms, and would just like to slap M. Bison around. Not that I need it to be disgustingly easy, but It's just a nice thing to be able to match a game's level of frustration with my mood or abilities with a particular game or genre.


So here's to you Mrs. Robinson. People love you more- oh, nevermind.
 
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Vert1
Joined: Aug 28 2011
PostPosted: Dec 02 2012 09:25 pm Reply with quote Back to top

Quote:
Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2 Plus has a mode for newbie ninjas. Select the "Hero" difficulty level and Ryu will auto guard when he’s in a pinch.

Read more at http://www.siliconera.com/2012/11/29/ninja-gaiden-sigma-2-plus-adds-hero-mode-for-novice-ninjas/#gEsEmrToxMOjZpUX.99


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Vert1
Joined: Aug 28 2011
PostPosted: Jun 25 2013 02:33 am Reply with quote Back to top

New Killer Instinct

Quote:
The combo system is a bit more “streamlined” so that anyone will be able to pull off big combos.


source:http://www.rarefandabase.com/exclusive-fresh-details-from-the-developers-of-killer-instinct-for-xbox-one/

Didn't think combos were hard to pull off as a kid...


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JohnnyBenz
Title: The nip killer
Joined: Feb 08 2013
Location: Northeast MS
PostPosted: Jun 25 2013 03:07 am Reply with quote Back to top

I actually wouldn't mind that so much because I sucked so hard at the combos when I was a kid. I never was a hardcore fan though, and imagine the they will be pissed because of this inclusion.
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The Opponent
Title: Forum Battle WINNER
Joined: Feb 24 2010
Location: The Danger Zone
PostPosted: Jun 25 2013 08:37 am Reply with quote Back to top

Big combos are an enormous pain in fighting games. If you eat one, you're made to spend possibly more than five seconds sitting around and waiting for your turn, if you even get one. If "anyone can do them", what is that going to do to the pacing of matches?


I'm not a bad enough dude, but I am an edgy little shit. I'll do what I can.
 
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Cameron
Title: :O Ö O:
Joined: Feb 01 2008
Location: St. Louis, MO
PostPosted: Jun 27 2013 01:03 pm Reply with quote Back to top

Well, since Killer Instinct is all about C-C-C-COMBO BREAKERs that can technically be done at pretty much anytime, I don't imagine big combos will be throwing the balance of the game off that much.


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Vert1
Joined: Aug 28 2011
PostPosted: Sep 06 2013 08:47 pm Reply with quote Back to top

A look at hand holding in today's generation of gaming.

http://www.neogaf.com/forum/showthread.php?t=576865

Thankfully Platinum Games counterbalances:

Quote:
Question: I still think it's a bit too early to call it a flop but I'm surprised people aren't showing more interest in the game. What is it they don't like about it?

Response: The part where the game doesn't hold your hand all the way through and explain every single game mechanic to you in explicit detail. The most common thing I see brought up as a downside is the lack of a tutorial explaining everything. Combine that with the games difficulty, and how initially it can appear very chaotic, and people that only know how to mash won't have much fun.


source: http://www.gamefaqs.com/boards/673081-the-wonderful-101/67166700

Quote:
"I can only really speculate about the problems that people are having, or why they're having them," says Kamiya. "But if I do speculate, I'll start by recognizing that the game's really for core gamers - though there are elements that make it accessible. Personally, I find that using the stick is something more suited to the hardcore gamers, because if you take time to look down at the screen you lose time. If you're hardcore, use the stick and it'll be better - the screen's for people who aren't quite as hardcore."


source: http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2013-08-30-the-wonderful-kamiya


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Vert1
Joined: Aug 28 2011
PostPosted: Oct 13 2013 01:26 am Reply with quote Back to top

Aonuma responds to the dumbing down of games:

Quote:
"We wanted to make it a game where it would be fun to get stuck and be lost," Aonuma explained. Aside from it being a sequel to a 22-year-old game, that's another way in which A Link Between Worlds connects to gaming's past: It doesn't completely guide players through the experience, which is a criticism levied at many modern games — including recent Zelda titles.

"I think that one thing all game developers worry about when they're putting something into a game is, 'Will people notice it? Will people realize what they're supposed to do?' And we kind of have a bad habit of hand-holding, trying to make things easier for everyone," said Aonuma. "But more and more, I start to think that that kind of isn't actually that fun."

Aonuma and his team wanted to implement hints judiciously in A Link Between Worlds. So they tried to design the game so that the people who need hints get them, and those who don't can do their own thing.

"There's actually one area in the game where I fought for three days with my director over whether we should have a hint in there or not. As a result, after the end of that we actually decided to take it out," said Aonuma.

"So if that part of the game is too difficult, it's my fault," he added with a laugh. "But it's fine — it'll be fine!"


source: http://www.polygon.com/2013/10/12/4829872/the-legend-of-zelda-a-link-between-worlds-eiji-aonuma-interview-nycc-2013


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DarknessDeku
Title: Haunted Enemy
Joined: Dec 08 2007
PostPosted: Oct 13 2013 01:08 pm Reply with quote Back to top

I like hard games, but difficulty isn't the only think that makes a game good. Don't make a game like I Wanna Be The Guy that is nothing but booby traps. Graphics, gameplay, and story are cool too.
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Vert1
Joined: Aug 28 2011
PostPosted: Oct 13 2013 09:49 pm Reply with quote Back to top

That's great... But perhaps you could post that into a thread where people discuss the merits of what makes a game "good" or rewarding and what makes a game complex & challenging versus cheap & tedious (the different types of difficulties that are better or worse --difficulty from I Want To Be That Guy is more trial-and-error than skill). People have been clamoring for that discussion.

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Added one for Mario:

Quote:
Nintendo of America’s George Harrison tells CNN that GameCube’s software sales were lower than expected because games like “Super Mario Sunshine” are too difficult for today’s gamers. Due to Cube’s software sales, Nintendo of Japan and Miyamoto have decided to make games less challenging to sell software to larger audiences.
“Nintendo’s chief gaming architect Shigeru Miyamoto agreed with criticism that the Mario game was too hard. And, in a decision that might anger the hardcore crowd, the word has since come from up high to make games less challenging.” says CNN.


source: http://money.cnn.com/2003/04/16/commentary/game_over/column_gaming/


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AngeloA2
Joined: Jun 10 2012
Location: Brasil
PostPosted: Oct 13 2013 11:56 pm Reply with quote Back to top

Well if a game has an easy mode it´s fine by me, really.They need this to sell because "some" gamers nowadays need to win ASAP or the game sucks...
But if you are not force to play easy or casual, go hardcore from the start.If you finish the game with no problems in it's biggest dificullt., then you can complain about.Unless it is due to bad design but that´s another discussion.
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Fighter_McWarrior
Title: Gun of Brixton
Joined: Jun 05 2011
Location: Down by the River
PostPosted: Oct 14 2013 02:53 pm Reply with quote Back to top

Vert1 wrote:
That's great... But perhaps you could post that into a thread where people discuss the merits of what makes a game "good" or rewarding and what makes a game complex & challenging versus cheap & tedious (the different types of difficulties that are better or worse --difficulty from I Want To Be That Guy is more trial-and-error than skill). People have been clamoring for that discussion.

It was a valid comment. You've spent this entire thread masturbating to difficult games, and all Darkness said was, "That's not everything". I know you think that a game's difficulty is it's "soul", but what the soul of a game is supposed to be is really up to the people who design it. They determine the spirit of the game, not some pocket of gamers who instinctively want every game to be as insanely difficult as possible.

I'm also starting to think that a developer blaming a game's difficulty for its sales failure is a cop out on their part.


"Spanish bombs, yot' quierro y finito
Yo te querda oh ma corazón
Oh ma corazón, oh ma corazón" - The Clash, Spanish Bombs
 
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Vert1
Joined: Aug 28 2011
PostPosted: Oct 14 2013 03:33 pm Reply with quote Back to top

The initial problem with this thread was that I never defined what I meant by dumbing down. That was bad. And so we got off to a bad start. I'm hoping to start over.

Dumbing down refers to dropping a game's complexity, a removal of skill sets players must perform to overcome obstacles. (Examples are having hints displayed when solving puzzles or removing spikes in a Megaman game).

DarknessDeku wrote:
I like hard games, but difficulty isn't the only think that makes a game good. Don't make a game like I Wanna Be The Guy that is nothing but booby traps. Graphics, gameplay, and story are cool too.


The problem was that no one wrote or suggested that difficulty was the only thing that makes a game good. But let's say someone did, it's still off-topic as the thread is about the decline of difficulty, NOT difficulty in itself. I know the thread starts off contentious with the disagreement on my opinion on difficulty, but its focus was always on posting about changes in difficulty in games. Opinion on a particular change is encouraged, but to continue a discussion that is essentially "who cares about difficulty changes if I can have fun still" isn't productive to the thread. BTW, it's really disorienting reading your comment since it doesn't respond to any particular post in this thread and comes off as a "this is how I like games". It may have been put-offish in the OP (Original post - 1st post in thread) poo-pooing gamers who like easy games but it does cue readers in to what this thread was a response to (frustration at industry practices and modern gamers).

Please post about changes that decrease difficulty. Injecting opinion on "what makes games good", "games should be for everyone" and "it doesn't matter if it's hard" is off-topic. It's not worth arguing, name calling or masturbating about. That's for another thread.


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JoshWoodzy
Joined: May 22 2008
Location: Goshen, VA
PostPosted: Oct 14 2013 04:55 pm Reply with quote Back to top

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Vert1
Joined: Aug 28 2011
PostPosted: Oct 14 2013 05:36 pm Reply with quote Back to top

Greg the White wrote:
Vert1 wrote:
Even Atlus is giving in the casuals by adding a casual difficulty option. I don't understand who would buy the fourth version of a game for casual mode.

Quote:
While Etrian Odyssey series is known for being hardcore, the game has a casual mode for newcomers. Casual mode takes you back to town if you die instead of ending the game and gives you an item that lets you warp to town at anytime. Etrian Odyssey IV: Legends of the Titan is slated for release in early 2013.


source: the-magicbox.com

If they still have its normal difficulty, then why is an inclusive difficulty such a problem? God forbid someone who doesn't have tons of hours to stuff into a game is still allowed to appreciate all of its other facets.


vert1 wrote:
Read the top post. These dumbed down difficulties strip the game of its soul; i.e. its difficulty. It's like designing the "worst version of your game". Atlus is wasting their time adding it.

If you don't have a lot of time I wouldn't recommend buying any Etrian Odyssey game. Those games are addicting.


Not sure why I started writing about difficulty and souls. Dark Souls? heh. Let me redo this:

For a dungeon crawler genre, difficulty is essential in making players feel threatened and keeping their wits sharp. Etrian Odyssey is not a hard game to beat despite popular opinion (post-game is another topic). It allows you to warp out of a dungeon to town when outside of a battle. This item never goes out of stock in the town store. This means that trudging back to the start of the level or next level to exit the stratum is optional. Players are not pushed to progress far through a level in one-go or do long playthroughs in a dungeon level because of this exiting out and saving option. So this minimizes any real loss of progress (risk/reward). What little progress you could lose only happens if you get overpowered by an F.O.E. that joins in unexpectedly in a fight. So, the game is e a s y on its default difficulty (there are no difficulty settings) with this one item.

It should have been removed altogether or extremely limited which would make the dungeon crawling and the use of an itemwarp more pleasurable. And removing perma-death (a staple in the Fire Emblem series) makes death less impactful by removing skill to avoid it; practically pointless. [offtopic: These difficulties have always been suggested as easing newcomers in but no one seems to think that newcomers will be turned off from playing the game altogether by what is essentially bad game design or braindead challenges.]

One of the most rewarding experiences I had with Etrian Odyssey was to fight my way through most of a 4th stratum level and realize that I did not have a townwarp item. So I had to fight my way back to the start of the level and that meant I had to dwindle my supplies away. That I was terrified of not being able to make it back and losing tons of progress. REAL SURVIVAL HORROR SHIT. I even came up with a creative way to to restore my health when my tp and hp supplies were gone: I killed all but one enemy in a group and then used a Troubadour ability to slowly recover hp (like leftovers in Pokemon) while my party members were put to sleep -- yea, I play the game without a healer class. That's something way more memorable experienc (and challenging) than warping in-and-out of dungeons constantly.


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Fighter_McWarrior
Title: Gun of Brixton
Joined: Jun 05 2011
Location: Down by the River
PostPosted: Oct 15 2013 02:21 am Reply with quote Back to top

Quote:
Please post about changes that decrease difficulty. Injecting opinion on "what makes games good", "games should be for everyone" and "it doesn't matter if it's hard" is off-topic. It's not worth arguing, name calling or masturbating about. That's for another thread.


So what you're essentially saying is that we have to mindlessly support your complaining, or our posts aren't germane to the topic?

That's stupid. If you post your opinion (that the decrease in gaming difficulty since the Nintendo age is harmful the medium writ large), you need to expect that opinion to come under scrutiny.


"Spanish bombs, yot' quierro y finito
Yo te querda oh ma corazón
Oh ma corazón, oh ma corazón" - The Clash, Spanish Bombs
 
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Vert1
Joined: Aug 28 2011
PostPosted: Oct 15 2013 03:41 pm Reply with quote Back to top

vert1 wrote:
Opinion on a particular change is encouraged,


Page 3 was looking pretty good. All the comments posted about the change in Killer Instinct's combo system were great and what the thread should continue to do. I'm hoping more game entries with an example of its difficulty drop are made. But if things are all peachy with your favorite game series or genres' difficulties then what's there to submit, right?


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