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Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Psychology in Design Choices for Games Part 2

This is the second part of my thoughts on "Psychology in Design Choices for Games" (Read Part 1). Remember how I said in the previous part that many developers tend to use statistics to find out what people like the most? Well, today I will discuss about if going main stream is really a good idea.

Is the Main Stream path good in the long run?

Yes and no. Everything is good in moderate. People need choices, variation - different kind of games! In movies we eventually get tired of the classic "girl is annoyed by hero-to-be-character but learns to love him during the course of the movie and eventually the hero gets the girl" scenario. The same applies to games. You cannot repeat a winning concept so much that you will end up in the "main stream" folder.

There are always indie games, but they rarely got the same financial support as the big titles. What would happen if... Blizzard (!!) decided to do something completely new, not a main stream game at all!? Imagine a the movie "300", where the hero already was married, the wife got raped and the hero actually died in the end - never seeing his wife ever again. Still, a lot of people like this movie. They find it to be something different than most similar movies with a lot of action, but with the classic romance.

People like different. People like surprises. People like riddles, questions, mysteries that you can't figure out from the start!

Main stream is dying, darlings needs to be killed and games needs to be made. 

Here is a video of Star Wars: The Old Republic, a game that was originally marketed as a game much different to World of Warcraft and very little about grinding and the classic "tank/healer/dps" shebang. But what does it look like today? Well, let's take a look!

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