History SoYouWantTo / WriteAVideoGame

21st Apr '17 9:51:32 PM nombretomado
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** '''Competitive''': In ''VideoGame/ClashOfClans'', players can only be attacked whilst offline, with the AI controlling your defenses on your behalf. The Suda51 game ''VideoGame/LetItDie'' is a ''VideoGame/DarkSouls''-influenced permadeath {{roguelike}} where your slain character becomes an enemy in a randomly-selected instance (yours, someone else's, whatever). If you kill a former PlayerCharacter this way, you get extra loot; if it kills ''you'', its owner gets bonuses.

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** '''Competitive''': In ''VideoGame/ClashOfClans'', players can only be attacked whilst offline, with the AI controlling your defenses on your behalf. The Suda51 Creator/Suda51 game ''VideoGame/LetItDie'' is a ''VideoGame/DarkSouls''-influenced permadeath {{roguelike}} where your slain character becomes an enemy in a randomly-selected instance (yours, someone else's, whatever). If you kill a former PlayerCharacter this way, you get extra loot; if it kills ''you'', its owner gets bonuses.
8th Dec '16 1:39:23 PM slvstrChung
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* '''''A'''''synchronous multiplayer is when only one person plays at a time. While this sounds ridiculous, it's OlderThanTheyThink: PlayByPostGames of TabletopGame/{{chess}} have been a thing for centuries. And there are actually lots of different ways it can happen.
** In ''VideoGame/ClashOfClans'', players can only be attacked whilst offline, with the AI controlling your defenses on your behalf. (You also get to design your city in ways that funnel attackers towards your defenses.)
** The Suda51 game ''VideoGame/LetItDie'' is a ''VideoGame/DarkSouls''-influenced permadeath {{roguelike}} where your slain character becomes an enemy in a randomly-selected instance (yours, someone else's, whatever). If you kill a former PlayerCharacter this way, you get extra loot; if it kills ''you'', its owner gets bonuses.
** ''VideoGame/BraveFrontier'' allows asynchronous ''co-op''. For each dungeon, you form a party of five characters... and are allowed to "borrow" a friend's character to serve as a SixthRanger. (It helps that ''Brave Frontier'' has LoadsAndLoadsOfCharacters, creating incentive for you to make friends ''and'' providing more options for you when you go dungeon-diving.)
** ''VideoGame/FarmVille'' works along similar lines. It pioneered the (for lack of a better term) "token economy" system: if you want to do [X], it requires special crafting reagents, which can only be provided to you by friends who also play the game, which is why ''Farmville'' players are always sending you Facebook requests asking for help. (The alternative is [[BribingYourWayToVictory in-app purchase]].)

to:

* '''''A'''''synchronous multiplayer is when only one person plays at a time. While this sounds ridiculous, it's OlderThanTheyThink: PlayByPostGames of TabletopGame/{{chess}} have been a thing for centuries. And there are actually lots of different ways it It can happen.
be used both for co-operative and competitive play.
** '''Competitive''': In ''VideoGame/ClashOfClans'', players can only be attacked whilst offline, with the AI controlling your defenses on your behalf. (You also get to design your city in ways that funnel attackers towards your defenses.)
**
The Suda51 game ''VideoGame/LetItDie'' is a ''VideoGame/DarkSouls''-influenced permadeath {{roguelike}} where your slain character becomes an enemy in a randomly-selected instance (yours, someone else's, whatever). If you kill a former PlayerCharacter this way, you get extra loot; if it kills ''you'', its owner gets bonuses.
** '''Co-operative''' asynchronous multi typically relies on SocializationBonus. In ''VideoGame/BraveFrontier'' allows asynchronous ''co-op''. For each dungeon, you form a party of five characters... characters, and are allowed to "borrow" a friend's character to serve as a SixthRanger. (It helps that ''Brave Frontier'' has LoadsAndLoadsOfCharacters, creating incentive for In ''VideoGame/FarmVille'', you to make friends ''and'' providing more options for can't complete certain tasks until you when you go dungeon-diving.)
** ''VideoGame/FarmVille'' works along similar lines. It pioneered the (for lack of a better term) "token economy" system: if you want to do [X], it requires special crafting reagents, which
collect TwentyBearAsses... but said items can only be provided to you by friends ''friends'' who also play the game, which game. (Or {{microtransactions}}.) This is why ''Farmville'' players are always sending you Facebook requests asking for help. (The alternative is [[BribingYourWayToVictory in-app purchase]].)
help.
8th Dec '16 12:57:29 PM slvstrChung
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* {{Mobile Phone Game}}s are played on cell phones, particularly smartphones these days--AndroidGames and {{iOS Games}} are proliferate. They benefit from extreme portability, as well as the (relative) ease of touchscreen controls, but but most people don't have time to play a smartphone game for more than about 3 minutes at a time, so you'd better design the game accordingly. Additionally, whereas computers come with a 101-key keyboard and mouse, and consoles with a minimum of Thumbstick, D-Pad, 4 face buttons and 2 Shoulder buttons, a touchscreen phone has only... its touchscreen to display controls on. With such limited real estate, the game will need to have very simple controls.

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* {{Mobile Phone Game}}s are played on cell phones, particularly smartphones these days--AndroidGames and {{iOS Games}} are proliferate. They benefit from extreme portability, as well as the (relative) ease of touchscreen controls, but but most people don't have time to play a smartphone game for more than about 3 minutes at a time, so you'd better design the game accordingly. Additionally, whereas computers come with a 101-key keyboard and mouse, and consoles with a minimum of Thumbstick, D-Pad, 4 face buttons and 2 Shoulder buttons, a touchscreen phone has only... its touchscreen to display controls on. With such limited real estate, the game You will need to think hard about your GUI and how you want to display things. This is not to say that you ''can't'' have very simple controls.
titles on a phone from genres that are normally dominated by computers (such as RealTimeStrategy title ''[[http://www.tactile-wars.com/en Tactile Wars]]'' or consoles (Spectacle Fighter (''[[https://www.rayark.com/g/implosion/ Implosion: Never Lose Hope]]''); it is simply to say that it's easier to get in your own way on a phone.



* '''''A'''''synchronous multiplayer is when only one person plays at a time. While this sounds ridiculous, it's OlderThanTheyThink: PlayByPostGames of TabletopGame/{{chess}} have been a thing for centuries. In video games, it's typically combined with AsymmetricMultiplayer: the player has different roles depending on whether they're logged on or not. In ''VideoGame/ClashOfClans'', for instance, players can only be attacked whilst offline, with the AI controlling your defenses on your behalf.[[note]]You also get to design your city in ways that funnel attackers towards your defenses, but that's more technical detail than this discussion really needs.[[/note]] When it comes to co-operative, it's instructive to look at ''VideoGame/BraveFrontier''. For each dungeon, you form a party of five characters... and are allowed to "borrow" a friend's character to serve as a SixthRanger. (It helps that ''Brave Frontier'' has LoadsAndLoadsOfCharacters, creating incentive for you to make friends ''and'' providing more options for you.) For non-combat, we turn again to ''VideoGame/FarmVille'', who pioneered the (for lack of a better term) "token economy" system: if you want to do [X], it requires special reagents, which can only be provided to you by friends who also play the game, which is why ''Farmville'' players are always sending you Facebook notifications asking for help. (Their alternative is [[BribingYourWayToVictory in-app purchase]].)

to:

* '''''A'''''synchronous multiplayer is when only one person plays at a time. While this sounds ridiculous, it's OlderThanTheyThink: PlayByPostGames of TabletopGame/{{chess}} have been a thing for centuries. In video games, it's typically combined with AsymmetricMultiplayer: the player has And there are actually lots of different roles depending on whether they're logged on or not. ways it can happen.
**
In ''VideoGame/ClashOfClans'', for instance, players can only be attacked whilst offline, with the AI controlling your defenses on your behalf.[[note]]You behalf. (You also get to design your city in ways that funnel attackers towards your defenses, but that's more technical detail than defenses.)
** The Suda51 game ''VideoGame/LetItDie'' is a ''VideoGame/DarkSouls''-influenced permadeath {{roguelike}} where your slain character becomes an enemy in a randomly-selected instance (yours, someone else's, whatever). If you kill a former PlayerCharacter
this discussion really needs.[[/note]] When way, you get extra loot; if it comes to co-operative, it's instructive to look at ''VideoGame/BraveFrontier''.kills ''you'', its owner gets bonuses.
** ''VideoGame/BraveFrontier'' allows asynchronous ''co-op''.
For each dungeon, you form a party of five characters... and are allowed to "borrow" a friend's character to serve as a SixthRanger. (It helps that ''Brave Frontier'' has LoadsAndLoadsOfCharacters, creating incentive for you to make friends ''and'' providing more options for you.) For non-combat, we turn again to ''VideoGame/FarmVille'', who pioneered the (for lack of a better term) "token economy" system: if you want to do [X], it requires special reagents, which can only be provided to when you by friends who also play the game, which is why ''Farmville'' players are always sending you Facebook notifications asking for help. (Their alternative is [[BribingYourWayToVictory in-app purchase]].go dungeon-diving.)
** ''VideoGame/FarmVille'' works along similar lines. It pioneered the (for lack of a better term) "token economy" system: if you want to do [X], it requires special crafting reagents, which can only be provided to you by friends who also play the game, which is why ''Farmville'' players are always sending you Facebook requests asking for help. (The alternative is [[BribingYourWayToVictory in-app purchase]].)
13th Sep '16 6:16:17 PM slvstrChung
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Beware, ''beware'', '''''beware''''' the trap called the "Minimum Viable Product." As the term suggests, this is a benchmark that you and/or your team sets, representing the absolute most bare-bones version of the game that can be released to consumers. Exactly what this benchmark consists of -- what the core loop looks like, how many extras are available, how much content you have, if there is multiplayer, etc -- is going to depend on the nature of your product itself. For instance, for Creator/TelltaleGames, the MVP is "An engine and 20% of the content" because their games are episodic, whereas if you're on the team that made the original ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVII'' your minimum is "the engine, ''all'' the content, and every bell and whistle we decide to add." This can vary even within your genre; the creators of the [[MultiplayerOnlineBattleArena MOBA]] ''VideoGame/LeagueOfLegends'' decided to ship their game with 40 characters, whereas the competing ''VideoGame/{{Demigod}}'' went out with a mere ''eight''. (And that's why you've never heard of ''Demigod''.) Additionally, it's going to go up and down as the product evolves -- this is done, that is not; we can't implement this feature for various reasons; our investors want us to have [this] in it, so we have to add it in. ''And'' it's prey to the current climate of gaming, specifically the "Games As Service" model that dominates. Because games can be, and are, updated on a regular basis, it's become increasingly acceptable to take an ObviousBeta, declare it meets your MVP, and ship it. ''Whatever you do, don't do this.'' Very few games that shipped half-finished were financial successes, because the simple fact is that if players are going to spend a full game's worth of money, they want to receive a full game's worth of content for it ''today'', not tomorrow. Even worse, because of the way people play games these days, they're gonna go through content fast. People who make smartphone games can tell horror stories about how they shipped games which, they thought, had months of content, only to have players get through it in days or even ''hours''. When this happens, players lose interest, and fast. The fate of ''VideoGame/FalloutShelter'', not to mention ''VideoGame/PokemonGo'', are classic examples of games that ''could'' have gotten huge... had they been released with sufficient content. But no, someone decided that the Minimum Viable Product was a half-finished version that couldn't hold people's attention. And it didn't.

to:

Beware, ''beware'', '''''beware''''' the trap called the "Minimum Viable Product." As the term suggests, this is a benchmark that you and/or your team sets, representing the absolute most bare-bones version of the game that can be released to consumers. Exactly what this benchmark consists of -- what the core loop looks like, how many extras are available, how much content you have, if there is multiplayer, etc -- is going to depend on the nature of your product itself. For instance, for Creator/TelltaleGames, the MVP is "An engine and 20% of the content" because their games are episodic, whereas if you're on the team that made the original ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVII'' your minimum is "the engine, ''all'' the content, and every bell and whistle we decide to add." This can vary even within your genre; the creators of the [[MultiplayerOnlineBattleArena MOBA]] ''VideoGame/LeagueOfLegends'' decided to ship their game with 40 characters, whereas the competing ''VideoGame/{{Demigod}}'' went out with a mere ''eight''. (And that's why you've never heard of ''Demigod''.) Additionally, it's going to go up and down as the product evolves -- this is done, that is not; we can't implement this feature for various reasons; our investors want us to have [this] in it, so we have to add it in. ''And'' it's prey to the current climate of gaming, specifically the "Games As Service" model that dominates. Because games can be, and are, updated on a regular basis, it's become increasingly acceptable to take an ObviousBeta, declare it meets your MVP, and ship it. ''Whatever you do, don't do this.'' Very few games that shipped half-finished were financial successes, because the simple fact is that if players are going to spend a full game's worth of money, they want to receive a full game's worth of content for it ''today'', not tomorrow. Even worse, because of the way people play games these days, they're gonna go through content fast. People who make smartphone games can tell horror stories about how they shipped games which, they thought, had months of content, only to have players get through it in days or even ''hours''. When this happens, players lose interest, and fast. The fate of games like ''VideoGame/FalloutShelter'', not to mention ''VideoGame/PokemonGo'', ''VideoGame/PokemonGo'' and ''VideoGame/{{Titanfall}}'' are classic examples of games that ''could'' have gotten huge... had they been released with sufficient content. But no, no: someone decided that the Minimum Viable Product was a were half-finished version versions that couldn't hold people's attention. And it didn't.
13th Sep '16 6:13:35 PM slvstrChung
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Graphics are always a big thing in video games these days. Everyone wants good ones... but creating good ones takes a lot of time and effort. It can also require a great deal of processing power in terms of the hardware necessary to run your game. Even worse, graphics ''age''. Games that were considered to have stellar, cutting-edge graphics ten years ago (''VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVMorrowind'', ''VideoGame/TheSims II'', ''VideoGame/BattlefieldII'') look dated today. One simple workaround is to look at games which ''don't'' look dated--''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaWindWaker'', ''VideoGame/TeamFortress2'' and ''VideoGame/Limbo'' come to mind. What do these games have in common? Simple: they don't try to be photorealistic. Instead, they have an ''art style'' with graphics that aren't ''supposed'' to look like "reality" and instead like... well, whatever they're trying to achieve (cel shading, sliding silhouettes, etc). And, since they achieve it, their graphics become timeless. There's a Sliding Scale Of Photorealistic Vs. Artistic, and while both of them take money, the second one lasts longer.

to:

Graphics are always a big thing in video games these days. Everyone wants good ones... but creating good ones takes a lot of time and effort. It can also require a great deal of processing power in terms of the hardware necessary to run your game. Even worse, graphics ''age''. Games that were considered to have stellar, cutting-edge graphics ten years ago (''VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVMorrowind'', (''VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion'', ''VideoGame/TheSims II'', ''VideoGame/BattlefieldII'') ''VideoGame/{{Battlefield}} II'') look dated today. One simple workaround is to look at games which ''don't'' look dated--''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaWindWaker'', dated--''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaTheWindWaker'', ''VideoGame/TeamFortress2'' and ''VideoGame/Limbo'' ''VideoGame/{{Limbo}}'' come to mind. What do these games have in common? Simple: they don't try to be photorealistic. Instead, they have an ''art style'' with graphics that aren't ''supposed'' to look like "reality" and instead like... well, whatever they're trying to achieve (cel shading, sliding silhouettes, etc). And, since they achieve it, their graphics become timeless. There's a Sliding Scale Of Photorealistic Vs. Artistic, and while both of them take money, the second one lasts longer.
longer.

Beware, ''beware'', '''''beware''''' the trap called the "Minimum Viable Product." As the term suggests, this is a benchmark that you and/or your team sets, representing the absolute most bare-bones version of the game that can be released to consumers. Exactly what this benchmark consists of -- what the core loop looks like, how many extras are available, how much content you have, if there is multiplayer, etc -- is going to depend on the nature of your product itself. For instance, for Creator/TelltaleGames, the MVP is "An engine and 20% of the content" because their games are episodic, whereas if you're on the team that made the original ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVII'' your minimum is "the engine, ''all'' the content, and every bell and whistle we decide to add." This can vary even within your genre; the creators of the [[MultiplayerOnlineBattleArena MOBA]] ''VideoGame/LeagueOfLegends'' decided to ship their game with 40 characters, whereas the competing ''VideoGame/{{Demigod}}'' went out with a mere ''eight''. (And that's why you've never heard of ''Demigod''.) Additionally, it's going to go up and down as the product evolves -- this is done, that is not; we can't implement this feature for various reasons; our investors want us to have [this] in it, so we have to add it in. ''And'' it's prey to the current climate of gaming, specifically the "Games As Service" model that dominates. Because games can be, and are, updated on a regular basis, it's become increasingly acceptable to take an ObviousBeta, declare it meets your MVP, and ship it. ''Whatever you do, don't do this.'' Very few games that shipped half-finished were financial successes, because the simple fact is that if players are going to spend a full game's worth of money, they want to receive a full game's worth of content for it ''today'', not tomorrow. Even worse, because of the way people play games these days, they're gonna go through content fast. People who make smartphone games can tell horror stories about how they shipped games which, they thought, had months of content, only to have players get through it in days or even ''hours''. When this happens, players lose interest, and fast. The fate of ''VideoGame/FalloutShelter'', not to mention ''VideoGame/PokemonGo'', are classic examples of games that ''could'' have gotten huge... had they been released with sufficient content. But no, someone decided that the Minimum Viable Product was a half-finished version that couldn't hold people's attention. And it didn't.
12th Aug '16 12:30:32 PM slvstrChung
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** Note, additionally, that there are ''different kinds of difficulty''. Players might have difficulty grasping the overall picture--"What's that MostAnnoyingSound mean, and why can't I ignore it?" They might have difficulty grasping the particular nuances of ThatOneRule, or be overwhelmed by LoadsAndLoadsOfRules. They might have trouble with the ''physical motions'' of using the controller (SomeDexterityRequired). When designing, keep in mind which of these flavors of difficulty you happen to be good at, and make sure to get a second opinion on the difficulty level you've created.



** The hybrid child of CoOpMultiplayer and Single Player is DropInDropOutMultiplayer, perhaps best illustrated by ''VideoGame/DeadSpace3''. During the 1P campaign, the first player controls {{protagonist}} Isaac Clarke; when a second player joins, an {{NPC}}, Sgt. John Carver, becomes their avatar, and fights alongside Clarke as he progresses through the plot. Visceral Games took pains to seed "trap doors" throughout the game's script, so that Carver could be PutOnABus (or have [[TheBusCameBack The Bus Come Back]]) at a moment's notice, without impacting or even changing the plot.

to:

** The hybrid child of CoOpMultiplayer and Single Player is DropInDropOutMultiplayer, perhaps best illustrated by ''VideoGame/DeadSpace3''. During the 1P campaign, the first player controls {{protagonist}} Isaac Clarke; when a second player joins, an {{NPC}}, Sgt. John Carver, becomes their avatar, and fights alongside Clarke as he progresses through the plot. Visceral Games took pains to seed "trap doors" throughout the game's script, so that Carver could be PutOnABus (or have [[TheBusCameBack The Bus Come Back]]) at a moment's notice, without impacting or even changing having any impact on the plot.story.



* '''''A'''''synchronous multiplayer is when only one person plays at a time. While this sounds ridiculous, it's OlderThanTheyThink: PlayByPostGames of TabletopGame/{{chess}} have been a thing for centuries. In video games, it's typically combined with AsymmetricMultiplayer: the player has different roles depending on whether they're logged on or not. In ''VideoGame/ClashOfClans'', for instance, players can only be attacked whilst offline, with the AI controlling your defenses on your behalf.[[note]]You also get to design your city in ways that funnel attackers towards your defenses, but that's more technical detail than this discussion really needs.[[/note]] When it comes to co-operative, it typically involves borrowing a friend's gameplay assets for use as {{Assist Character}}s. For non-combat, we turn again to ''VideoGame/FarmVille'', who pioneered the (for lack of a better term) "token economy" system: if you want to do [X], it requires special reagents, which can only be provided to you by friends who also play the game. (...Or [[BribingYourWayToVictory in-app purchase]].)

to:

* '''''A'''''synchronous multiplayer is when only one person plays at a time. While this sounds ridiculous, it's OlderThanTheyThink: PlayByPostGames of TabletopGame/{{chess}} have been a thing for centuries. In video games, it's typically combined with AsymmetricMultiplayer: the player has different roles depending on whether they're logged on or not. In ''VideoGame/ClashOfClans'', for instance, players can only be attacked whilst offline, with the AI controlling your defenses on your behalf.[[note]]You also get to design your city in ways that funnel attackers towards your defenses, but that's more technical detail than this discussion really needs.[[/note]] When it comes to co-operative, it typically involves borrowing it's instructive to look at ''VideoGame/BraveFrontier''. For each dungeon, you form a party of five characters... and are allowed to "borrow" a friend's gameplay assets character to serve as a SixthRanger. (It helps that ''Brave Frontier'' has LoadsAndLoadsOfCharacters, creating incentive for use as {{Assist Character}}s. you to make friends ''and'' providing more options for you.) For non-combat, we turn again to ''VideoGame/FarmVille'', who pioneered the (for lack of a better term) "token economy" system: if you want to do [X], it requires special reagents, which can only be provided to you by friends who also play the game. (...Or game, which is why ''Farmville'' players are always sending you Facebook notifications asking for help. (Their alternative is [[BribingYourWayToVictory in-app purchase]].)
15th May '16 10:52:34 AM TheOneWhoTropes
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* Video Games are played on a console. Consoles are easier to program for because the hardware is standardized: every PlayStation4 has the exact same things inside it as any other (with the sole exception of hard drive space). You know exactly what the console can do. However, this requires a fair bit more in terms of licensing fees, and a bit more bureaucracy to wade through, since most console manufacturers want to do at least a little bit of Quality Assurance before they let the game released on their machines.

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* Video Games are played on a console. Consoles are easier to program for because the hardware is standardized: every PlayStation4 UsefulNotes/PlayStation4 has the exact same things inside it as any other (with the sole exception of hard drive space). You know exactly what the console can do. However, this requires a fair bit more in terms of licensing fees, and a bit more bureaucracy to wade through, since most console manufacturers want to do at least a little bit of Quality Assurance before they let the game released on their machines.
18th Apr '16 10:53:23 PM aye_amber
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You'll need to consider player agency. Video games are an interactive medium, where players are given choices--or, at least, the ''illusion'' of choice--and expect to see those choices respected and reflected in how the game proceeds. Sometimes this is merely a gameplay aspect--"I chose 'Burning Fist' instead of 'Frost Punch,' so I better be able to use Burning Fist when I press Circle-Circle-Square"--and if you're having problems you need to talk to your programmers or your Quality Assurance team. But sometimes it's a story choice. So if you give players choices over the events of your game's story, they ''have'' to play out over the course of the rest of the game. This is why {{Railroading}} is so decried as a trope: it not only renders the player's choices moot, but it pokes holes in the WillingSuspensionOfDisbelief. ''VideoGame/MassEffect3'' had some bad examples of this. In the first game, you made a choice whether to wipe out an alien who was the LastOfItsKind or not. In ''[=ME3=]'', that alien reappears in a specific mission... regardless of what you chose. It was [[TropesAReNotBad kind of cool]] to have said alien appear no matter what, but--once again--this writing decision made the choice in the first game [[TropesAreNotGood retroactively meaningless]]. (And it was one of the most significant emotional beats of the first game, so having the writers just throw it out was a little disrespectful.)

to:

You'll need to consider player agency. Video games are an interactive medium, where players are given choices--or, at least, the ''illusion'' of choice--and expect to see those choices respected and reflected in how the game proceeds. Sometimes this is merely a gameplay aspect--"I chose 'Burning Fist' instead of 'Frost Punch,' so I better be able to use Burning Fist when I press Circle-Circle-Square"--and if you're having problems you need to talk to your programmers or your Quality Assurance team. But sometimes it's a story choice. So if you give players choices over the events of your game's story, they ''have'' to play out over the course of the rest of the game. This is why {{Railroading}} is so decried as a trope: it not only renders the player's choices moot, but it pokes holes in the WillingSuspensionOfDisbelief. ''VideoGame/MassEffect3'' had some bad examples of this. In the first game, you made a choice whether to wipe out an alien who was the LastOfItsKind or not. In ''[=ME3=]'', that alien reappears in a specific mission... regardless of what you chose. It was [[TropesAReNotBad [[TropesAreTools kind of cool]] to have said alien appear no matter what, but--once again--this writing decision made the choice in the first game [[TropesAreNotGood [[TropesAreTools retroactively meaningless]]. (And it was one of the most significant emotional beats of the first game, so having the writers just throw it out was a little disrespectful.)
21st Mar '16 2:13:03 PM slvstrChung
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* CompetitiveMultiplayer is when you and other players ''compete'' to achieve different goals. The vast majority of video-game multiplayer, from FightingGames to FirstPersonShooter Deathmatches to sports games and more, take place in this space; they can use (theoretically) equal teams, or be giant free-for-alls. Typically, each competitor has the same goal--"Capture the Flag," "Kill ## people," "checkmate your opponent's King"--but recent games have begun to experiment with AsymmetricMultiplayer, where players have ''different'' goals. Some ''VideoGame/UnrealTournament'' or ''VideoGame/TeamFortress2'' matches involve one side attacking a fixed position and the other defending it, which has significant impact on the strategies and tactics each side uses, and the recent FirstPersonShooter ''VideoGame/{{Evolve}}'' revolves around this trope: all matches are 4v1, with human Hunters pitted against one very large alien Monster.

to:

* CompetitiveMultiplayer is when you and other players ''compete'' to achieve different goals. The vast majority of video-game multiplayer, from FightingGames to FirstPersonShooter Deathmatches to sports games and more, take place in this space; they can use (theoretically) equal teams, or be giant free-for-alls. Typically, each competitor has free-for-alls.
** Symmetric Multiplayer is a situation where both teams have
the same goal--"Capture the Flag," "Kill ## people," "Score goals," "checkmate your opponent's King"--but recent King." While this may sound boring, it should be pointed out that the vast majority of sports and games have begun throughout history use this model. It's also way, ''way'' easier on the developers when it comes time to experiment with AsymmetricMultiplayer, institute CompetitiveBalance.
** AsymmetricMultiplayer is
where players the two teams have ''different'' goals. Some ''VideoGame/UnrealTournament'' or ''VideoGame/TeamFortress2'' matches involve one side attacking a fixed position and the other defending it, which has significant impact on the strategies and tactics each side uses, and the uses. The recent FirstPersonShooter ''VideoGame/{{Evolve}}'' revolves around this trope: all matches are 4v1, with human Hunters pitted against one very large alien Monster.
Monster. Again, the downside of this is in balancing. Each character / ability / job class / whatever is probably stronger at offense than at defense (or vice versa), and yet it still needs to be viable when being used on the "wrong" side, so that the StopHavingFunGuys don't make too much noise.



* '''''A'''''synchronous multiplayer is when only one person plays at a time. While this sounds ridiculous, it's OlderThanTheyThink: PlayByPostGames of TabletopGame/{{chess}} have been a thing for centuries. In video games, it's typically combined with AsymmetricMultiplayer: the player has different roles depending on whether they're logged on or not. In ''VideoGame/ClashOfClans'', for instance, players can only be attacked whilst offline, with the AI controlling your defenses on your behalf.[[NOTE]]You also get to design your city in ways that funnel attackers towards your defensive towers, but that's more technical detail than this discussion really needs.[[/note]] When it comes to co-operative, it typically involves borrowing a friend's gameplay assets for use as {{Assist Character}}s. For non-combat, we turn again to ''VideoGame/FarmVille'', who pioneered the (for lack of a better term) "token economy" system: if you want to do [X], it requires special reagents, which can only be provided to you by friends who also play the game. (...Or [[BribingYourWayToVictory in-app purchase]].)

to:

* '''''A'''''synchronous multiplayer is when only one person plays at a time. While this sounds ridiculous, it's OlderThanTheyThink: PlayByPostGames of TabletopGame/{{chess}} have been a thing for centuries. In video games, it's typically combined with AsymmetricMultiplayer: the player has different roles depending on whether they're logged on or not. In ''VideoGame/ClashOfClans'', for instance, players can only be attacked whilst offline, with the AI controlling your defenses on your behalf.[[NOTE]]You [[note]]You also get to design your city in ways that funnel attackers towards your defensive towers, defenses, but that's more technical detail than this discussion really needs.[[/note]] When it comes to co-operative, it typically involves borrowing a friend's gameplay assets for use as {{Assist Character}}s. For non-combat, we turn again to ''VideoGame/FarmVille'', who pioneered the (for lack of a better term) "token economy" system: if you want to do [X], it requires special reagents, which can only be provided to you by friends who also play the game. (...Or [[BribingYourWayToVictory in-app purchase]].)



!!!Keep It Simple, Stupid

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!!!Keep !!Keep It Simple, Stupid



!!!Story Vs Gameplay: Fight!

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!!!Story !!Story Vs Gameplay: Fight!



Sometimes Story loses to Gameplay. ''VideoGame/MassEffect3'', and its notorious ending, is an example. Per WordOfGod, the CentralTheme of the story is, "[[TheChainsOfCommanding You can't save everyone]]." WarIsHell, and somewhere along the line you're going to have to choose [A] over [B] and watch [B] die a fiery, dramatic, slow-motion death with full OneWomanWail soundtrack in the background. In other words, there is no GoldenPath where you get absolutely everyone on your side. The salarians still believe that the [[SterilityPlague krogan genophage]], and resulting ChildlessDystopia, was justified? Then you have to pick between them and the krogan. The quarians won't stop fighting their RobotWar against the geth? Then you have to choose one or the other. The ''problem'' is, having no GoldenPath--especially in the final game of a trilogy, where The Player (correctly) expects you to wrap up all your loose ends--is a bad gameplay experience. Besides, the previous two games features ample chances to TakeAThirdOption, the doing of which often keeps you on ''their'' GoldenPath; it wouldn't do to [[UnexpectedGameplayChange suddenly remove it from the last title of the trilogy]]. So they kept the GoldenPath; it exists. You ''can'' get the quarians and geth to reconcile; and the salarians come around if you stick to your guns on the matter of the genophage. Even worse, situations in which there genuinely ''was'' no Third Option--in which you must condemn someone to death, with no recourse whatsoever, as you did on Virmire--were DummiedOut. ([[spoiler:It was to have been on Thessia: Liara and Kaishley were going to be your mandatory squad members, and you'd only have time to save one when the temple floor collapsed.]]) Thus, Story was defeated by Gameplay. And, even worse, [[PoorCommunicationKills the writers weren't told about it]], with the result that there's no GoldenEnding even though there's a GoldenPath. (That disconnect is why the ending was so notoriously ill-received.)

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Sometimes Story loses to Gameplay. ''VideoGame/MassEffect3'', and its notorious ending, is an example. Per WordOfGod, the CentralTheme of the story is, "[[TheChainsOfCommanding You can't save everyone]]." WarIsHell, and somewhere along the line you're going to have to choose [A] over [B] and watch [B] die a fiery, dramatic, slow-motion death with full OneWomanWail soundtrack in the background. In other words, there is no GoldenPath where you get absolutely everyone on your side. The salarians still believe that inflicting a SterilityPlague on the [[SterilityPlague krogan genophage]], krogan, and resulting ChildlessDystopia, was justified? Then you have to pick between them and the krogan. The quarians won't stop fighting their RobotWar against the geth? Then you have to choose one or the other. The ''problem'' is, having no GoldenPath--especially in the final game of a trilogy, where The Player (correctly) expects you to wrap up all your loose ends--is a bad gameplay experience. Besides, the previous two games features ample chances to TakeAThirdOption, the doing of which often keeps you on ''their'' GoldenPath; it wouldn't do to [[UnexpectedGameplayChange suddenly remove it from the last title of the trilogy]]. So they kept the GoldenPath; it exists. You ''can'' get the quarians and geth to reconcile; and the salarians come around if you stick to your guns on the matter of the genophage. Even worse, situations in which there genuinely ''was'' no Third Option--in which you must condemn someone to death, with no recourse whatsoever, as you did on Virmire--were DummiedOut. ([[spoiler:It was to have been on Thessia: Liara and Kaishley the Virmire Survivor were going to be your mandatory squad members, and you'd only have time to save one when the temple floor collapsed.]]) Thus, Story was defeated by Gameplay. And, even worse, [[PoorCommunicationKills the writers weren't told about it]], with the result that there's no GoldenEnding even though there's there ''is'' a GoldenPath. (That disconnect is why the ending was so notoriously ill-received.)



!!!Choices, Choices and More Choices

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!!!Choices, !!Choices, Choices and More Choices



Writing a game means making sure you give players choice. And that can be difficult, because every option The Player has? You had to decide to give it to them. In other words, (the illusion of) choice is something you have to ''create''. "DevelopersForesight" needs to be ''mandatory'' for your process, because if you don't, there's no game. It is your job to decide what actions are available. And that means you need to sit down and think about as many possible actions that a player ''could'' want to take, for fear of spiking WillingSuspensionOfDisbelief (InsurmountableWaistHighFence, WhyDontYouJustShootHim, etc).

Beware of {{Moon Logic Puzzle}}s, but also beware of the opposite: AcceptableBreaksFromReality. Video gamers are GenreSavvy enough to know that everything they can do is something you gave them the option to do, and so they will automatically assume certain things are impossible because ''you'', the '''programmer''', didn't think of them. If you did, this can cause real GuideDangIt moments. Two free examples: in the second ''VideoGame/GodOfWar'' game, there's a puzzle that you solve by raising a timed platform and then wedging it in the air using a pushable block. The problem is that you can only do this if the timed platform--which consists of a piece of floor on a pillar--is ''modeled'' that way in the game; it only works if the game treats it as a genuine T-shaped piece of level geometry, instead of a giant rectangle the way most players would assume it, and the way most ''programmers'' would've done it to save time. The other is from the seminal ''VideoGame/SpecOpsTheLine''. Late in the game, one of your NPC friends is strung up by a civilian lynch mob, with your characters coming across the process too late to stop it. The game suggests either letting them go or slaughtering the civilians; the [[TakeAThirdOption Third Option]], FiringInTheAirALot to scare them off, works pretty well in RealLife but might not in a video game because the civilians might not be programmed to be intimidated that way. That whole "DevelopersForesight" trope is ''nowhere'' near as prevalent as it could be, and ''players know that''. So never forget: the people you are asking to make choices are people who know their choices are artificially limited by ''your'' decision-making capabilities. It will take a lot of coaching, and a lot more excellent gameplay design, before this fact ceases to hold sway over gamers.

!!!'''Some Other Considerations'''

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Writing a game means making sure you give players choice. And that can be difficult, because every option The Player has? You had to decide to give it to them. In other words, (the illusion of) choice is something you have to ''create''. "DevelopersForesight" DevelopersForesight needs to be ''mandatory'' for your process, because if you don't, there's no game. It is your job to decide what actions are available. And that means you need to sit down and think about as many possible actions that a player ''could'' want to take, for fear of spiking WillingSuspensionOfDisbelief via {{Railroading}} or other silly obstacles (InsurmountableWaistHighFence, WhyDontYouJustShootHim, etc).

Beware of {{Moon Logic Puzzle}}s, but also beware of the opposite: AcceptableBreaksFromReality. Video gamers are GenreSavvy enough to know that everything they can do is something you gave them the option to do, and so do. They have also played a ''lot'' of video games where they will automatically assume certain things are impossible tried to TakeAThirdOption and were unable to because ''you'', the '''programmer''', didn't think of them. If you did, this it. The combination of "most developers are stupid" and "But I'm not" can cause real be some ''serious'' GuideDangIt moments. Two free examples: in the second ''VideoGame/GodOfWar'' game, ''VideoGame/GodOfWarII'', there's a puzzle that you solve by raising a timed platform platform, which is shaped like a T, and then wedging it in the air using a pushable block. The problem is that you can only do this if the timed platform--which consists of a piece of floor on a pillar--is ''modeled'' that way in the game; it only works if the game treats it as a genuine T-shaped piece of level geometry, platform has the collision physics ''of'' a T-shaped platform, instead of just being a giant rectangle rectangle, which is the way most players programmers would assume it, and the way most ''programmers'' would've done do it to save time. The other is from the seminal ''VideoGame/SpecOpsTheLine''. Late in the game, one of your NPC friends is strung up by a civilian lynch mob, with your characters coming across the process too late to stop it. The game suggests either letting them go or slaughtering the civilians; the [[TakeAThirdOption Third Option]], FiringInTheAirALot to scare them off, works pretty well in RealLife but might not in a video game because the civilians might not be programmed to be intimidated that way. That whole "DevelopersForesight" trope These are just two examples where the Dev Team Thinking Of Everything actually resulted in the Dev Team Failing To Think Of Everything. DevelopersForesight is ''nowhere'' near as prevalent as it could be, and ''players know that''. So never forget: the people you are asking to make choices are people who players know that their choices are artificially limited by ''your'' decision-making capabilities. It will take a lot of coaching, and a lot more excellent gameplay design, before this fact ceases to hold sway over gamers.

!!!'''Some !!'''Some Other Considerations'''



Type B shows how players can expect gameplay and story to be separated and simply another system. A subversion for type B could easily include moral choices having no effect on gameplay, seemingly, and then suddenly spring up as being important and recognized by other characters. A fantasy RPG has a moral choice system that seems to only effect what type of spells or skills are unlocked for the PC, and suddenly in the middle of a game a character mentions how the forces responsible for magic are actually paying attention to the player, and are granting him spells based on how he acts and solves problems. Done well, and followed up upon so it doesn't just look like a HandWave, it can actually be a surprise to the player about how this thing they had mentally placed as gameplay is touched upon by the world it happens in and has actual meaning. Done poorly it will still look like a HandWave, or maybe even a VooDooShark, and annoy the player that such things were being justified when it was just fine as a gameplay feature.

to:

Type B shows how players can expect gameplay and story to be separated and simply another system. A subversion for type B could easily include moral choices having no effect on gameplay, seemingly, and then suddenly spring up as being important and recognized by other characters. A fantasy RPG has a moral choice system that seems to only effect what type of spells or skills are unlocked for the PC, and suddenly in the middle of a game a character mentions how the forces responsible for magic are actually paying attention to the player, and are granting him spells based on how he acts and solves problems. Done well, and followed up upon so it doesn't just look like a HandWave, it can actually be a surprise to the player about how this thing they had mentally placed as gameplay is touched upon by the world it happens in and has actual meaning. Done poorly it will still look like a HandWave, or maybe even a VooDooShark, VoodooShark, and annoy the player that such things were being justified when it was just fine as a gameplay feature.
4th Mar '16 9:28:35 PM slvstrChung
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* The model pioneered by {{Collectible Card Game}}s and {{Card Battle Game}}s is the "Games As Collection" model: you buy ''pieces'' of the game. Such games typically incorporate a GottaCatchEmAll mentality to encourage continued purchasing. They require you to ''continue'' releasing {{Expansion Pack}}s in order to keep the game fresh, and as such it's ''very'' easy to release {{Game Breaker}}s on accident. But novelty is a very powerful factor, and a game that is constantly new, the {{metagame}} constantly changing, can be addictive on a "CrackIsCheaper" level.

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* The model pioneered by {{Collectible Card Game}}s and {{Card Battle Game}}s is the "Games As Collection" model: you buy ''pieces'' of the game. Such games typically incorporate a GottaCatchEmAll mentality to encourage continued purchasing. They require you to ''continue'' releasing {{Expansion Pack}}s in order to keep the game fresh, and as such it's ''very'' easy to release {{Game Breaker}}s on accident. But fresh. The upsides are that novelty is a very powerful factor, and a game that is constantly new, the {{metagame}} constantly changing, can be addictive on a "CrackIsCheaper" level.
level. The downside is that it's ''very'' easy to release {{Game Breaker}}s on accident. You're also going to have to deal with [[NewRulesAsThePlotDemands Complexity Creep]], since you keep adding on new features and such. Players who leave the game will have trouble returning, because so many things may have changed in their absence. (All of this is true of the "Games As Service" model too, by the way.)
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