Monday, May 21, 2012

7 Game Designs That Must Disappear as Soon as Possible

So, after decades of games being made, leaps in technology and new ideas popping up everyday, some decisions on game design still happens all the time. And most of times they are signs of laziness and lack of consideration to the players. There is no justification on them in certain cases and developers who use them have a special place waiting for them in hell. Things like...

7. Invisible Walls

No. Don't do that. if you don't want your player to go to somewhere who is just a background scenario. Put some really tall walls or anything that justify your impossibility to go there. Even a real glass wall would be better than see your character stuck in place without nothing really blocking his path. or be creative, like sharks in the water, satellite lasers or anything, but don't just arbitrarily decide that the characters cannot move on the open fields ahead of them because they are like a painting in a wall.

6. Jump is impossible, even about knee high obstacles

Again, a case of lazy design. You don't want the game's character to go somewhere and just put some obstacles. But instead of being really impossible to surpass such obstacles, they are just small stuff like boxes or bushes along the way. And they are visible smaller than the player's character, but the game made them impossible to pass because they don't allow you to jump. It is more infuriating when you see the characters having to jump to solve a puzzle or during a cutscene. If you really want us to believe our badass characters cannot pass a knee high rock, make it a rock the size of a damn mountain!

5. Closed wooden stuff

Oh, look, a wooden door/locker. Oh, it is locked, but I have a big ass axe/hammer/grenade launcher/robot who can smash it to pieces. Except that the game don't allow us to just break the damn thing. They want you to find the fucking key. Fuck you, stupid game designer! At least make the door looks like something unbreakable, like reinforced steel. Making you unable to open the door because you just want to delay the player in a stupid sidetracking to find the key just show you are filling time here.

4. Flying Numbers

We are not mathematicians and we will not pause the game to get a calculator as add up all those numbers, who are so tiny they are barely visible and move so fast you have no time to add them all. It is even worse when you have a bunch of meter bars flying with them. It is redundancy! Get us visual cues like armor degrading, colors or something, but get rid of the numbers!

3. Unnecessary Button Clicks

Oh, look, stairs! There is nothing blocking them! but let's ask the player who have to actively come to them to start climbing if he really want to use them! Or if they want to pick up an item from the floor, despite having unlimited inventory size! Or if they want to do something despite having no other option, just to make a damned rhetorical question! If you can do it without the need to use a button, do it!

2. Changing the rules mid-game

OK, so you gave me a power/weapon/ability that is very useful. Nice. I am abusing of it because it is fun and effective. Oh, but them, during a boss or specific section, I just cannot easy the amazing power I have, despite still having it, because you want to make me a challenge. Fuck you. At least make the power/weapon/ability be taken from me in the story, don't just arbitrarily decide that it cannot be used in that specific moment just because you want me to use a new power/weapon/ability who is less fun but you decided to include in the damn game anyway.

1. Save Points

They made a lot of sense ten years ago, when consoles had a very limited memory size where you could save your games. Now all consoles have large memory cards or HDDs, so putting save points, specially far from one another is stupid, a relic of game design from the past. Let us save anywhere. Some of us really can't wait to the next save point at all and need to go to the bathroom right away. It does not make the game funnier or challenging, just bothersome.

Honestly, all of the above things is a bother, and games who have all of them tend to sucks. So, just stop it!

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