Posts Tagged ‘Video Games’

While looking into compulsion, I found that I couldn’t avoid looking directly at emotion.  The above picture is from Heavy Rain, a game where the creators are trying to introduce more emotion into games.  I must admit that I was skeptical for a long time and passed it off as artistic indulgence.   Something came along and changed my mind completely yet I haven’t played the game.  Emotion isn’t the sign of indulgence but perhaps the complete opposite in a medium rife with shallow emotional connections to simply sensational experiences.  While I do not speak with any authority on the subject, I am passionate about it and want to learn to do it right.

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Compulsion and fun

Posted: December 27, 2009 in Game Design, Games
Tags: , ,

I’ve been doing some thinking about compulsion and the notion of fun.  Most people would admit that the goal of a game is to entertain, usually summed up in the word fun.  To have fun.  When building a game, we refer to the intangible ‘fun factor’ of a game.  We also talk about a game’s ‘stickiness’, i.e. it’s ability to have the players come back for more after they’ve left the game, or better yet, to stay in the game for extended periods of time.  For myself as a player, and other player’s i’ve talked to, a game’s stickiness is often involved in the fun.  A game that keeps me coming back, I naturally assume it’s because I enjoy it.  But is that really the case?

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My original title for this post was ‘Experience versus Mechanics’ but that was too mechanical. So to run with the metaphor, Ninja’s were people. They had lives, desires and emotions like you or I. Most robots, don’t. Most Robots can do the job of Ninjas but it won’t mean anything to them. Ninja’s are awesome because they can do all sorts of sneaking, killing and martial arts. Robots are cool because they don’t die while performing any given task we give them. They don’t die because they aren’t human.

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A game director that I once studied told me that he really no longer looks at many large blockbuster titles but rather trolls small flash games for interesting ideas. He showed me a few and I’d like to share them:

http://www.eyezmaze.com/grow/RPG/index.html

This one is interesting. What I took from this was how to have the simplest interaction with what makes something ‘fun’ at its core. Try it, see what you think.

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