do you mean difficulty levels?
Nah, I guess he means having multiple levels in RPGs.
I meant this:
wait i didn't read the 'difficulty level's in his message opps. Yep i love having those, so long as there is an easy or normal or a story and regular or a casual or normal. modes
I love having them if it means a more casual experience for people who just wants to experience the story. I'm terrible in action/fps kind of games, but some of them tend to have great stories. On the flipside, if they're added for the sake of achievements and bragging rights, I'm pretty about it.
Note: just my personal bias.
I actually don't like them, because they always give me the opportunity to lower the difficulty insteat of findet a good strategie. Don't like them. I know I don't have to change the difficulty after I set it to hard, but the possibility alone is tempting. Basically I do not want to have a choice.
Definitley prefer it. I like playing the Story/Easy modes.
It really depends on how much I love the game. If it's a game that isn't quite my favorite, I usually go for a middle-level of difficulty so I can casually advance through the story. But if it's something like Star Ocean: The Second Story, I'll play it over and over again, and crank the difficulty up to Chuck Norris levels.
Agree with @Accendor here.
I also find games with multiple difficulties not as finely tuned and balanced, even on the normal difficulty. More likely to have difficulty spikes or pitfalls, certain difficulties being a really big drop (feelings of the game quickly becoming a pushover) or really big number inflation (feeling more of a punishing difficulty over an increase in challenge). Sometimes even one difficulty level raised or lowered being a massive change.
The other thing is that you can't tell which difficulty is right for you til after you played quite a bit (thus a wrong choice could make the game not as enjoyable). With one game's normal being another games easy, another games hard being another games very hard, etc.
In the end I feel that a game loses some design freedom and restricts itself in mechanics to accommodate the easiest tier (otherwise the easier difficulties end up being alot more easier or end up not being all that different), the harder difficulties end up just restricting players by lowering players values or raising enemies and thus making the game more punishing and eventually makes the player follow the one cookie cutter that works for the higher ones by forcing the player to only use the most effective measures (generally cutting off a huge variety of the lower difficulties).
ex: How many useless abilities are there in the later difficulties of diablo and how do the optimal builds compare to the nonoptimal builds?
I generally tend to play on the harder difficulties because I like to be pushed to my limits. My brother on the other hand likes to breeze through games on the easiest difficulty, so I guess if rpgs didn't have difficulty options my brother wouldn't have gotten into many of the same games I am.
It depends. Usually I don't like difficulty levels in rpgs because I've yet to really find one that's optimized between all difficulty levels, either the game was made to be difficult and the tacked on easy mode makes it impossible to lose (not fun) or else the hard mode will be similarly tacked on and feature only stat changes that make winning a tedious act of attrition. If the difficulty effects the enemies and player's movesets and options and actually attempts to balance itself out between all forms I'm okay with it but most often what difficulty settings do is either buff enemy stats to pad out fights or else slash them to quicken the fight depending on which way you go, and I've never seen a game that's properly balanced that way.
Multiple difficulty levels are always a plus in my books. Better to let both casuals and thrill-seekers to enjoy the game. The only exception to me is games like Dark Souls, whose main premise is to be difficult and where easy mode would just be boring.
If done well, it allows average players like me to enjoy a game, even if it's made to be challenging for the majority of other players.
That's definitely a plus. More work for balancing, but it's worth the effort.
However, I don't like automatic level scaling, when an end game common rat can challenge a half-god hero. That's ridiculous!
Not really something to discuss in a status update, but I don't like them. The real world won't let you choose between Easy or Hard. It's what it is, you can only change what you've got control of (aka your hero). If you want to add extra challenges, then add more difficult side-boss or dungeons.
Honestly I never really pay attention to them. If a game has difficulty settings, I always just play on "Normal" and leave it at that.
I've always thought different difficulty levels were cool, provided it actually required additional strategy to win and wasn't merely the equivalent of turning on cheats for the computer to use against you (much like what Alexander said).
However, I began my training on my mom's Atari at around 3 - 4 years old. Not only were some of those games extremely difficult to control, but my hands were so tiny they'd keep getting pinched in that Trak Ball control pad. Yet, I persevered. Because of that training, I've worked myself to a level where I only ever play on one difficulty setting.
If it improves the AI on battles or change how puzzle works i'm totally fine with it.
I had to fix the dificulty level in SKyrim with mods...using damage and resistance formulas to emulate dificulty is just bad and lazy as frick.
I actually had to install 100 mods or so to archieve something that could place dark souls in the limbo.
I think they're good if the game is a dungeon crawler. Otherwise, I don't care about difficulty settings. It's actually pretty bad if the game lets the player change the difficulty anytime. I remember that I managed to break Oblivion's balance by switching the settings half-way through.
I'd say it's doubly important for story-driven games. Nothing is more frustrating in a story-driven game than to be stuck on some cheaply difficult boss when all you want to do is to progress the story. Whereas a dungeon crawler would likely only be tailored for challenge seekers, a story-driven game will be played by both casuals and challenge seekers.
@Kyuukon: I don't quite understand your reasoning. Why does it matter whether what real life lets you pick? If we wanted to make games identical to real life, then there should be no option to save your game, and dying would not let you play the game ever again. Yay for realism!
I prefer the Tales series which has Easy Normal Hard Mania Unknown Hell Evil XD so many hard choices to suffer through
A good question here would be: What real life has to do with Rpgs? lol
We are talking about medieval fantasy games with monsters and sci-fi games with robots here.
I am legit confused by Kyuukon post.
@Matseb2611: It's a matter of self philosophy, I guess. The more realism you have in a game, the more immersive it becomes thus more fun yay! I always aim to for that in the aspects I can (for example, instead of "Save Game", I'd say "Write on Diary" and make the protagonist have one in their inventory). For logical reasons, very few times one can escape the annoying "Game Over" screen (especially in RPGs) but I would if I got the chance (hardcore mode is not the prettiest thing but a possibility I'd consider D.
I dunno. Personally, I really hate when a game asks me to choose my difficulty when I press "Start". In those cases, I always go with "normal" regardless of how good I consider myself.
Since when realistic means more immersive and so more fun? By your logic, nobody would play the Final Fantasy games then. They are called Fantasy for that reason, they are opposite of Real.
What's fun for me, might not be for somebody else. But I still think Fantasy+"Realism" = Winz.
Or else why bother with lore when it's all just "Fantasy" :/
what lore has to do with realism?
@kovak: it reminded me when people say "it's just a TV show, it's not real". It pisses me off because while it's fantasy, it has to make sense while adhering to the world's rules. This "realism" (not sure if the right word) helps provide the immersion I think developers should prioritize more.
I hope I cleared myself (often I have troubles expressing myself, especially in English lol).
To add more, by only focusing on one difficulty you can do that difficulty better than if you focused on three (assuming an equal amount is spent between the two cases).
Does Mario need a hard mode? If so what does it add? What would be worth sacrificing to add this?
Does Dark Souls need an easy mode? If so what does it add? What would be worth sacrificing to add this?
Such things take from the pool of limited resources and limited time, which could ultimately hurt the game's primary focus by trying to make the game more inclusive (and perhaps to the point of disappointing the group that made the series possible in the first place).
...and before it is mentioned (if it is)...
You can't really write this one off, else you could not make an argument against any option ever (for there could always be someone that would enjoy the game more for this option) or end up using logic based on hypocrisy.
Yes someone could find difficulty settings a worthy enough to use the resources for, but that cannot be said for everybody. Ultimately depends what the game developer wants to do for their design and if they find difficulty settings important enough for that (there is no absolute poor design choice, I always find people that like even some of the most commonly disliked game design choices all the time).
Note: Please do not mention the common band aid fixes (ex: just change the numbers). These just make the game unsatisfying to people who play on those difficulty (the group who complains the game is to easy or cheap usually) and ultimately makes a subpar experience for that group.
@Kyuukon - I don't think you mean realism (perhaps you mean trying to make a game world seem like it could actually exist outside of the game?), but I get what you are trying to get at.
Although I do not think it is a strong case against difficulty options. Else other options like graphic settings, language settings (which is normally asked before difficulty), etc would be considered a negative also.
This ended up longer than I wanted lol
It's fine, I think the word you're looking for is "sense", making sense is not the same as realism.
Realism would be to make things as close to real life as possible like in World War Z.
It has zombies and shows zombies with new perspectives of how a zombie behave if they really existed in less than 2 hours with actos on a big screen which i find pretty nice.
It reminds me that once a friend of mine told me to make shooter where the players are zombies and the enemies are the humans. Now we go to Immersion - The rules are simple:
1 - You can't play as a human.
2 - Zombies needs to behave like zombies.
By the time World War Z haven't gone to the cinemas and every material i had was not deep enough to tell what a zombie is. It's easy to say that a zombie is a moving dead body with basic functions and are canibals. Imagine how much headache i had wile trying to come up with a proper design. I was so frustrated that i gave up and 4 years latter i understood a bit of how a zombie behave, just a tiny bit and now i can't make this game anymore cuz i'm broke as frick.
Imagine zombies who hunt on packs or alone and never pray on sick humans. They don't fight for survival, they just want to get fed and then they act like snakes, waiting to digest and the cicle starts again. They move according to how they bodies are and since their brains uses basic functions they can uses their muscular power at 100% till it becomes useless if needed (a normal human who uses 100% of their muscular power will be hosed up for a couple of weeks till it recovers). Some may keep odd instincts like pregnant zombies who will protect their belies if attacked.
And what all of it has to do with game difficulty? A nice AI behaviour is 100 times worth compared to damage+resistance formulas and fits in the lore and design of the project.
@Kyuukon: But you can add this element of immersion for difficulties too. For example if the game is meant to be a post-apocalyptic setting full of hopelessness where people live off scraps, you could have difficulty levels represent how dystopian the setting is. Easy = Hopeful (the world has been destroyed, but there's still hope on the horizon, supplies are aplenty to rebuild a civilisation), Normal = Perilous (the world is in ruins and you have to adapt to survive, supplies are limited and every little bit counts), Hard = Dire (the world is a danger zone and nowhere is safe, supplies are very scarce and society is doomed), Extreme = Harrowing (there is no hope, no allies, no supplies, you are as good as dead).
@Matseb2611: Hmm.. that's a good approach Still, I'd probably select Normal xD!
That's understandable. Many people would pick Normal. But those who just want to play for the story would likely go for Easy, and those who don't mind a great challenge will likely dive straight into Hard.
Another thing, if someone starts to play Normal and then finds it too hard, at least they know there is Easy mode in the game and they can switch to it. I've had this issue with many games and I was glad they had an easy mode to switch to. Had this mode not existed, I would've likely given up on the game.
Although, I think being able to switch difficulties on the fly should only allow players to switch down and not up. That way, you only switch down because the mode you've picked is too hard for you, but if you want to beat a harder difficulty for challenge sake, then you have to play it from the start.
basically a increased enemy spawn and reduction of resources, like in RE, right?
I remember when I was a kid and started playing Pokemon Yellow for the first time.
If any of you were lucky to play it, the first GYM leader (Rock type) is quite a pain if you don't have a fighting type move. As a kid, I'd have probably lower the difficulty if I could so to beat him, but as we know, Pokemon has no difficult settings so I had to toughen up and train my Pokemon until I was able to beat it. I was so freaking happy and excited after winning my first medal. So glad Pokemon didn't let me change it to easy mode back then (or I'd have surely exploited it) :3
Years later, I played Pokemon on PC Emulator. I often used the speed hack and save hack. I know I should have controlled myself but having those options available really ruined it for me T.T
That's my personal experience with it. It's more enjoyable if I can't configure how the world works and have to find a way around "legally" (abiding to the world rules) so to speak.
Pokemon allowed you to capture and train other pokemons, though. You only needed to find and train the right one. Using a lightning or fighting type pokemon against something that's obviously strong/immune against such elements means you're introducing the challenge to yourself, in ny opinion. There's no need for an easy mode in such a game, in my opinion.
It depends largely on your audience. In this day and age, a lot of people who play games have very limited time on their hands. I personally don't want to spend hours being stuck on a single part of the game, because whenever I do have the time to play games, I want to enjoy my time and relax. As kids we had more free time to spend grinding or hitting against a brick wall. Don't have that luxury as adults (unless perhaps if you're unemployed and have no other commitments).
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