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Sunday, March 11, 2012

How to trick your players with smart(?) design!

I've started noticing some things lately when playing a few games. I knew for a fact that these productions were big, maybe even too big. Another thing they have in common is Electronic Arts.

What is priority when you got too little time for a too big project?

Wow, this games is awesome!.. oh, wait a minute...

Star Wars: Knights of The Old Republic... the Sith Lord who should have been more epic.

When I first started playing Dragon Age, the original, I loved it. When I finished it, I loved it. The designers clearly had lots of time and made sure the game was good all the way through.

Then there's games like Dragon Age 2 or why not Star Wars: The Old Republic (which I right now play and have for a long time rather enjoyed). The beginning of the game is quite good. It's actually so good that you can't wait for the later levels. It has to only get better, right? 'Cause that is how a game should be. The more time you invest, the better content should be awarded to you. Not anymore.

I believe that if a Game has too little resources before release, the first levels of the game is strategically designed to be really good, in order to capture the player and make him/her invest. Once the player has invested in the game, he/she might still be disappointed by the not-so-good late levels, but since the investment already has been made there's less incentive to stop playing.

Smart move by the designers! But is it... really a smart move? What will the expectation for future games? Is it worth the cost in reputation? I honestly don't know. Do you?

When I first met Johannes Thorén...

... I was working on this forum quite used to all kinds of weird people entering the forum and introducing themselves. Then one day a guy called "Stripps" came. He seemed like a very sincere young boy hoping to one day become a very good poker player. Obviously that never happened. :P

Over time Stripps became more and more active in the forum and one day he was doing so well that I hired him as a freelance moderator. That's when we finally decided to bring some of our people down to Gibraltar for a week or two. That's when I REALLY met him.

He looked a bit different than I had imagined, but I liked the fact that he looked like a younger sibling of Per Wolf, my former Line Manager. They also had quite a similar personality. Both extremely messed up but very happy at all times.

To celebrate this, we raped Johannes head. See the video below:

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