1. Gamers who find escapism in becoming a part of a game's fiction. They are happy to play a fleshed out character in an interesting world, and the game's goals kind of take a back seat.
2. Gamers who find escapism by becoming the hero of a game's world. The challenges and goals are how they do this, and a fleshed out hero and game world can, if anything, be a distraction.
This is interesting. I wonder if I fall between these two, because I enjoy some games for the challenge, and others for the experience. I really liked DKCR and Rayman Origins because they were really difficult and satisfying to overcome.
On the other hand, I notice that when I play story-driven games like Zelda and Shenmue, I play the character almost like an actor. I'll even have the character walk slowly during tense or dramatic scenes simply because it would break the mood to have him bolting around like a sprinter (even tho it wouldn't make a difference in the game).
I don't intend to get external help when I sit down to any game, but it's not fun to be stuck, either. However, it is fun to be stuck for a while, and then eventually get unstuck. Somewhere in there is a threshold for how much you're willing to torture yourself. For me, it depends on why I'm playing the game. If it's for the challenge, like with most action games, I resist help for longer than if I was playing for the story, like with classic adventure games.
Post by nocturnal YL on Apr 28, 2013 13:50:43 GMT -5
I'd outright refuse help in action-oriented games. I reset whenever I die in recent Mario games, because I won't stand the game insulting me with any death count besides zero. It might not be an honest zero death anymore, but it is a zero continue record with no midpoint flags used.
With linear games with things that can be permanently missed (Golden Sun 3, Luigi's Mansion 1...), I would actively seek guide. Otherwise, I'd give it enough tries until I give up (too early).
I think a lot of players would enjoy games in both ways, and it's more of a matter of balance. I wouldn't like my games taken to either side to the extreme - visual novels with no real interactions or gameplay-only lightweight games do still interest me, but don't expect me to be paying for any of them in cold, hard cash.
This is interesting. I wonder if I fall between these two, because I enjoy some games for the challenge, and others for the experience. I really liked DKCR and Rayman Legends because they were really difficult and satisfying to overcome.
The one exception I have is humour. If a game is funny then I am more easily driven by the game's story, even if the mechanics drive me nuts. The Mario & Luigi games and even the Ace Attorney games do this for me... But I'm also more likely to cheat if a puzzle is too abstract and I really don't want to restart.
So perhaps it's a genre-by-genre thing. I like my action games to be me, the hero, saving the world. I like my adventure games to be much cleverer than me in the writing, but not too much cleverer than me in the puzzles.
I'm such a fusspot!
I'm still working through Crystalis right now. I must admit, it's a surprising game. It's often compared to Zelda, but it has a lot more in common with A Link to the Past (which it predates). It's not always clear how to advance, and switching swords on the sub-menu is tiresome. However, as action-RPGs go, it's pretty damn good. It's fast, it's a big, interesting world, and I'm liking it so far.
Even if it does steal half its plot from Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind...
Castlevania I’ve been battling with Simon Belmont’s quest for years. I’ve gotten as far as Death, but he whipped me in a hurry, and I haven’t quite been able to make my way back through that level to try again. This is a tough, tough game, and I really need to focus to make any headway in it. That being said, I think Konami did a great job getting the vibe for Castlevania down pat right off the get-go. The haunted house motif is excellent, with tons of monsters to whip, and despite the game being such a punishment, it’s not so tough as to make the player feel that there’s no chance for them to win. In fact, that goal seems completely possible! It just takes a lot of work to accomplish, and mostly it’s fun performing that task. The excellent music helps that aim, too. A definite classic that is close to being in my favorite NES games.
DuckTales Ducktales takes the old Disney animated cartoon into 8 bits with success. The sprites are sharp and represent the stars of the show well, and the enemies and bosses that were originally created for this game fit in with the motif. The five stages offer a fair amount of diversity. Each locale has its own unique foes and hazards to tackle, and Scrooge is more than well equipped to handle the task with his multifaceted cane. The game makes good use of these mechanics, and although Scrooge lacks a direct way of attack, the game rarely makes that an issue. The only nitpick I have about them is that the pogo stick has a habit of disabling itself on cliff edges, which can cause cheap hits or a pitfall to occur. The game’s major downside is that it’s short. I breezed through the game on normal difficulty in a hour or so (that was with the levels memorized, mind you; add another hour or so to newbies). Thankfully, it’s a good enough ride to make that hour or two quite special. There’s a ton of hidden goodies to track down, some tricky platforming for expert players to find top-secret treasures, and Launchpad’s ability of whisking players back to Duckburg midstage adds some extra incentive for players to explore, but it’s still going to end awfully quick no matter how you look at it. Despite those flaws, Ducktales remains a gem of a licensed title, and is worth trying out. It won’t keep you long, but the time will be well spent.
Kirby's Adventure I really became attached to Kirby’s NES debut. I spent hours upon hours goofing around with the game, pretending that each power Kirby could wield as a separate character, with their own home room and personality type. It was a delightful waste of time. But it offered me a valuable outlet for my imagination to run a little wild, and helped develop my own ideas and concepts for game design. The game itself was a marvelously programmed platformer. One could abuse Kirby’s ability to fly to bypass a lot of the game, but that’s a good way to really miss out on the quality level designs HAL came up with. It’s certainly not a difficult game, either, but that was irreverent. When a game does everything you tell it to do with its controls, charms you with sharp graphics and delightful music, and offers up challenge not with its enemies or bosses but with some tricky hidden switches to find (and man, it took me years to do a couple of them! Have you found Rainbow Resort’s last stage’s switch? That was one of my most memorable NES moments discovering that one!)…this was a hell of a way to send off the NES. I can not recommend this game enough
Mega Man 2 Another classic that I had to try out later on in life. It’s very easy to see why MM2 has become the stalwart of the franchise. The leap from the original to MM2 is vast. The gameplay is tighter, the levels are crazier-looking and more balanced, the music is rocking, and the whole experience feels far more focused. The enemies are more diverse than MM1, and tend to be more fun to engage, too. All and all, a lovely action game that pushes several of the right buttons for me.
Mega Man 3 As one of the oldest games in my Essential Game list, I can thank MM3 for making me discover what impact means in terms of a game. Certainly Super Mario Bros., Donkey Kong and Legend of Zelda left a tangible mark, but Mega Man 3 was the first game I truly obsessed over. I created strategy guides, deciphered the password screen, and replayed it over and over to experiment with the weapons and for speed-runs. Mega Man 3 made me begin to love Capcom and arguably gaming in general. As years march on by, I can still revisit Mega Man 3 and return to the glory days of my youth. I can march my way right on through with little problem, remember every single enemy weakness, and enjoy the hell out of it.
The game is fine. It's Mega Man. But I hate hate hate those Doc Robot levels! They stretch the game out too far and they're harder than anything that comes after them.
My biggest problem was after narrowly defeating Doc Air Man, the huge pit afterwards was a pain. I passed it and died, but then none of the power-ups respawned, so I couldn't use Rush Jet again. I had to suicide because the respawning enemies were awkwardly placed so I couldn't stop the items from either falling or hitting me while I had my buster active.
It left a bitter taste in the mouth, and it soured the rest of the game for me. By the time I finished it, I was glad it was over, rather than overjoyed or elated like I was with MM2.
Is this a known issue? Did I miss something obvious? Is this a problem for anyone else?
Well, I played MM3 first out of the series, so I didn't have MM2 floating around in my mind to compare it to. There are some unfortunately unbalanced aspects to the Doc Robot stages, I will admit. Needle Man's air gauntlet (which is what you're referring to here, Fry) really can suck if you die in the process of flying over it, or if you happen to die afterwards. I totally hear you. The stages are a little long, but personally, I thought it was a nice ramp-up of difficulty and they don't bother me. I replayed it in January and zipped right past those stages, if I recall. However, if you're not super familiar with the layouts and the way the game operates, I can imagine it could be annoying. Sorry it left such a bad feeling, though! It may just be that I can overlook the imbalance because it's my first (and favorite!) Mega Man game.
It does seem to come down to the wire over whether everybody's favourite is MM2 or MM3, and while MM2 was my first Mega Man, I've tried them all at some point and I love the series as a whole. All the bickering over which is better that which is moot, at even the worst of the Mega Man games (on NES, this is) would still be better than most of the other games on the system.
This was the first time, other than MM1-2, that I'd attempted to actually beat one of them. I went in with an open mind and to be honest, I enjoyed it until those Doc Man stages showed up.
Oh, they didn't stop me. These are my "Beat the Game" efforts. I tried and tried and tried and cursed and tried again.
Probably no surprise, but I'm taking my time with Crystalis. I'm simultaneously getting some practice in with another game on the list: Blaster Master. I downloaded it for 3DS VC. Not recording it yet, but hopefully I can work out how to actually play it. Damn it's hard!
I was inspired both by this discussion and by Jeremy Parish's reexamination of Metroid on Telebunny, so I decided to actually play through Metroid for the first time all the way through without the Justin Bailey password. I enjoyed it more than I expected to, although the game's shortfalls inhibit the earlygoings. The energy grinding and overwhelming map with some early guiderails that vanish at a certain point make it an occasionally frustrating game to play. Not being able to duck or angle your shots is also a little annoying, but understandable. However, the core mechanics are here, and the challenge is pretty fair once you get your bearings. I had a map, which minimized the wandering aspect immensely, but I probably wouldn't have liked it so much without it. In short, my opinion has rose about the game, but it's still has some key flaws that make it a little hard to fully engage it.