Friday, January 15, 2016

Grinding in Video Games

"Grinding" a term used in video gaming to describe the process of engaging in repetitive tasks. Grinding in a game is never a good thing, even if your having fun going through thousands of enemies for some dumb reason that's not considered a grind its a grind when you have to do that and you hate it. Not a lot of games fall into this trick that looks fun in thought but when you actually do get down to it is annoying and sometimes frustrating.

Majority of these grinding games are Free-to-play which means they want you to buy their stuff your spend every waking moment of your life to get anything good in those games.

One reason that is less influenced by player choice is a lack of game content or to be able to battle stronger enemies. If the player experiences all interesting content at the current level before reaching the next objective, the only alternative might be for the player to grind to the next level. "Interesting content" is key here since the player might have been given "new content" that is too similar to previous content to be considered interesting by the player.

A game I have been playing is Warframe a cooperative game that I started playing with a group of friends and I have made some very interesting notes about the game.

1.Always choose Excalibur
Excalibur is one of the most powerful warframes because of a few moves that it carries and it is almost unstoppable.

2.You have to wait for Everything
If you want to get a new weapon, armor, gadget, pet, ship, base, mission, or experience you have to gather the resources to make it then wait 12 hours or more for it to finish.

3.Trade prime items for platinum
Platinum is the payed currency that can be used to pretty much progress faster and can be traded for certain items, since some weapon parts are randomly dropped people will pay you for those items you don't need and they don't want to put in the time for.

To solve the grinding issue, E McNeill proposes that "the most effective path to victory should also be the most fun". For example, challenging tasks should give better rewards than easy tasks. The IGDA Online Games Special Interest Group has noted that level treadmills are part of the addictive quality of MMORPGs that caters to those who play more than 25 hours a week. In my own experience I can agree that majority of the time I put away for gaming is dominated on Warframes leveling system.  

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Survival Games

Survival games are a sub genre of action video games that generally start the player with minimal resources in a hostile, open-world environment, and require them to collect resources, craft tools, weapons, and shelter, and survive as long as possible. Many survival games are based on randomly or procedural-generated persistent environments, with more recent entries often playable online and multiple players on a single persistent world. Survival games are generally open-ended, with no set goals which makes almost endless to play, or at least up until you get bored with surviving.
A lot of survival games have game out past the years. I believe its popularity came from the success of Minecraft.

The gameplay consist of having the player's character survive as long as possible in a harsh environment. At the start of a game, the player is placed in the game's world with few resources. The world itself is often randomly or procedurally generated so that players will have to explore the area to find food and other resources, with knowledge from previous games being used for visual and audio cues about where resources may be found nearby. Many survival games have some sort of crafting system of which by gather those resources can craft other items to help defend yourself or for utility to gather resources faster.

All these games have a perma-death system which means that when you die in the game you lose everything and have to restart the game all over. Survival games are nearly always playable as a single player, but many are designed as multiplayer experiences, with game servers hosting the persistent world that players will connect to. The open-ended nature of these games encourage players to work together to survive, but do not prevent the killing of player-characters, and in some cases, can making this a rewarding goal such being able to loot the dead character's body. This can lead to players forming alliances, constructing fortified structures and working together to protect themselves from both the dangers presented by the game's world and from other player-characters.

As Andy Kelly put it "I will survive" in response to all games that they have played and tried their best to reach endings to. Of course not all survival games have a key ending, mainly crafting the last item in the game I would call the end of it.

Many survival games are presented in the first-person perspective to help immerse the player in the game. Other titles have taken other means of presentation. Games like Terraria and Starbound are presented as two-dimensional side views, while Don't Starve uses sprites rendered in a 3D isometric projection.

Survival games are a great genre and even better when you play with friends. You can have all the fun of exploring new worlds, some with different ideas on how things are made and can solve the what ifs of all of our questions. Remember get those campfires ready and survive the night cause in these games you don't know whats gonna kill you first, the creatures or the players.

Monday, January 11, 2016

Why Puzzle and Skill Games are Addicting

Today, There are a lot of expectations for a video game. They have to look good, and run at high frame rates, they must have an intriguing story to be immersive and They must be exceptionally hard. Yes that’s correct, the harder the video game, the more fun it is actually. Adventure, puzzle & skill, and strategy games seem to be where most of the hardest games ever made or generalized, let's break it down.

Puzzle and Skills.
Puzzle games are an everlasting gem in the iconic world of 2d gaming with adaptations that can please and woo any enthusiast looking for a fun time, and quite the challenge. There are newer games that fit this category, including Angry Birds and Hexagon, and there are older games like Super mario that are classics in general. In hexagon you repeatedly doge flashing shapes coming from the outside of the screen trying to crush you into the middle and you moves clockwise or counterclockwise in order to make it to the gaps and avoid being destroyed. In super mario bros, you play as a single combatant wandering the world to find the princess Peach and save the day. The amount of enemies and tricky situations will make any gamer rage.  Any game you play you will find that as it gets harder you are going to be more intrigued by it, you will want to play it more.

Sometimes you don’t need repetitive, fast action to make a game hard. With games such as Dark Souls and The Witcher, they use their long story and unique characters to make every action you do consequential. Each enemy has specific play styles and move sets that trick you at every turn. Some may swing once, twice, thrice, or they might jump at you for a fourth you never know! even on your second playthrough on dark souls, you just don’t know. They switch it up often, you never get the same enemy twice in different areas. Unpredictability is the hardest, hence the most fun.

These games take comprehensive-Thinking-Ahead to more of an extreme. It doesn’t matter if you're building the largest army, or defending your base from unstoppable hordes of enemies, or relinquishing your lust for battle and play a city-sim;either way you strategize, it’s freakin’ hard. “Even the best laid plans often go awry” said Author of Of Mice and Men John Steinbeck, and it shoots true in most strategy games. That’s why strategy games have a long lasting love from hardcore gamers especially MLG.

Caleb C, guest blogging for Alex S.

Re-Mastering and Sequels

With the release of many new games towards the end of 2015 almost all of them were sequels. Only a small amount were original works, those works that are original was all made by small indie developers. Of course this doesn't mean that all the big company developers are sticking to the same game mechanics and play style as their previous works, they are just adding new things to old games so they last longer or appeal to a larger audience.

But is that really a good thing? The more big game developers stick to what they know instead of making new games they just keep shipping out the next number or phrase until we get sick of it giving an example of "Beating a dead horse" James from Extra Credits makes a good sense in saying you can only revenge, rebirth, and re-imagine so many times before it gets old.Another reason why remaking some of the older games is that nothing from the old game is reusable. Especially since a lot of the older games used smart work-a-rounds to make the game work because they only had a small amount of space to work with. They can't do that again by today's standards and it's going to cost a considerable amount of money to make everything new.

 Take Final Fantasy VII for this matter, a couple months ago SQUARE ENIX announced the start of a remastered version of this game. But now they have to remake everything and fill the world with characters who move around and talk, every person has to be fully rendered, fully animated, and all the music has to be redone 
as well as all the main characters.   

What is the good reason for all this re-mastering?
Well, it allows us to bring back games from the past that have long been unplayed or unable to be played due too finding a reasonable priced copy or even having the system to play it on. Thanks to re-mastering we are able to make those games cheap and accessible for all who want to play it, not just fans but younger audiences who never got to experience a time where there was a limit on video games or other indie developers who are looking for inspiration for their own game creations.

     Take Rare Replay for instance, all of the games from this collection are games that can no longer be bought threw an online market. Plus all the games in the collection have been remastered and brought up to today's standards of gaming, now anyone who wants to can pick a copy of Rare Replay a play all these fun and enjoyable games though it is a exclusive for the Xbox one so if you don't have the console I guess you are still back to the drawing board.

When it comes to re-mastering its does have good points but there are also the bad points as well. What I think in my own opinion is, big game developers should drop some of these sequel games and move on to bigger and brighter games. As for Indie developers should keep going as they are, a lot of great games are seen in the Indie community and that is because they are allowed to think out-side-of-the-box.