Jump to content

  • Log In with Google      Sign In   
  • Create Account

FREE SOFTWARE GIVEAWAY

We have 4 x Pro Licences (valued at $59 each) for 2d modular animation software Spriter to give away in this Thursday's GDNet Direct email newsletter.


Read more in this forum topic or make sure you're signed up (from the right-hand sidebar on the homepage) and read Thursday's newsletter to get in the running!


Introducing/Directing gameplay without sacrificing immersion?


Old topic!
Guest, the last post of this topic is over 60 days old and at this point you may not reply in this topic. If you wish to continue this conversation start a new topic.

  • You cannot reply to this topic
4 replies to this topic

#1 Creath   Members   -  Reputation: 112

Like
0Likes
Like

Posted 29 September 2012 - 04:47 PM

Hey everyone, first post here, glad to be a part of this community =)

I've been tinkering around with a game concept for a while now. It's an action/adventure game, driven by visual storytelling with little to no dialogue or narration.

Now I'm absolutely new to the concept of video game writing/designing, and was wondering how to approach introducing and directing the gameplay without ruining the immersion. I want to create a sensory oriented experience, and throwing up a little bubble that says "Press X to do X" or "Do This" really ruins that. Is there a tactic for introducing gameplay and direction without flat out telling the player, or making them feel restricted and controlled?

Sponsor:

#2 Heath   Members   -  Reputation: 344

Like
0Likes
Like

Posted 29 September 2012 - 05:33 PM

Man, now I'm going to have to look twice at your name every time. :P

First, your idea is interesting, but you'll need to ask yourself a few questions in private: What is your goal for the project? And what is the setting? What's going on in the game?

Once you have your goal and setting in mind, remember: Monkey see, monkey do. It doesn't take much to explain what a joystick should do for a video game, or a touch-screen. The game fails when the player expects the input to do one thing and it does something else, going against the grain. So you have to decide what device the player is going to use to control it, and design with that in mind. You also need to design around your output. Just for example, is this a first-person shooter, or a platformer? Because Doom and Contra might both involve shooting enemies, but they present that in very different ways, and they're controlled differently too. Is it more like an adventure game? That's controlled differently, too.

All in all, this is just "designing around the I/O". But maybe I've been reading Chris Crawford a bit much, lately. :)

#3 Creath   Members   -  Reputation: 112

Like
0Likes
Like

Posted 29 September 2012 - 05:48 PM

Man, now I'm going to have to look twice at your name every time. Posted Image

First, your idea is interesting, but you'll need to ask yourself a few questions in private: What is your goal for the project? And what is the setting? What's going on in the game?

Once you have your goal and setting in mind, remember: Monkey see, monkey do. It doesn't take much to explain what a joystick should do for a video game, or a touch-screen. The game fails when the player expects the input to do one thing and it does something else, going against the grain. So you have to decide what device the player is going to use to control it, and design with that in mind. You also need to design around your output. Just for example, is this a first-person shooter, or a platformer? Because Doom and Contra might both involve shooting enemies, but they present that in very different ways, and they're controlled differently too. Is it more like an adventure game? That's controlled differently, too.

All in all, this is just "designing around the I/O". But maybe I've been reading Chris Crawford a bit much, lately. Posted Image


Haha, I actually had to doublecheck when I saw your comment ^_^

Thanks for the feedback! It's a first person adventure game, and I aim to have no guns involved. So what you're suggesting is to just make the controls simple and let the player figure it out?

#4 sunandshadow   Moderators   -  Reputation: 5066

Like
0Likes
Like

Posted 29 September 2012 - 07:37 PM

If you have a character who acts like a teacher, then you can sort of make the instructions part of the story.

Phone game idea available free to someone who will develop it (Alphadoku game - the only existing phone game of this type is both for windows phone only and awful. PM for details.)


I want to help design a "sandpark" MMO. Optional interactive story with quests and deeply characterized NPCs, plus sandbox elements like player-craftable housing and lots of other crafting. If you are starting a design of this type, please PM me. I also love pet-breeding games.


#5 Mario D.   Members   -  Reputation: 198

Like
2Likes
Like

Posted 29 September 2012 - 11:41 PM

Hey everyone, first post here, glad to be a part of this community =)

I've been tinkering around with a game concept for a while now. It's an action/adventure game, driven by visual storytelling with little to no dialogue or narration.

Now I'm absolutely new to the concept of video game writing/designing, and was wondering how to approach introducing and directing the gameplay without ruining the immersion. I want to create a sensory oriented experience, and throwing up a little bubble that says "Press X to do X" or "Do This" really ruins that. Is there a tactic for introducing gameplay and direction without flat out telling the player, or making them feel restricted and controlled?


Introducing controls using a console controller is fairly easy without explicit direction (at least if the mechanic is not interacting with the environment directly). Players will end up pressing every button to see what happens and they can learn that way. This can definitely add a layer of exploration as they tinker with how the controls affect actions on screen. It also advisable to make the controls as familiar as possible, following the standards games have etched into our minds (right trigger should always shoot, left stick should always move, right stick should always look around, the 'A' button should either be a way to select things or jump, etc.).

Keyboard controls seem much more difficult however considering the daunting amount of buttons that have the possibility of executing an action. Your just going to ask yourself a question of how the player is going to view your game from the outset. A player will look to move and look around instantly in a first person game. Naturally players will go to either "WASD" or the arrow keys. I have to look around so my mouse should come in handy, which means that the left and right click should do something too. "Space is a huge key, it has to do something!"

Your User Interface can also be a great indicator of what does what. Your hotkeys in MMOs shows numbers next to them, you instantly know how to use them.

Also I would put the player in situations where they have to learn or not continue.
  • They can't pass this gap until they explore their inputs and jump.
  • They can't get kills until the explore their inputs and shoot.
You get the idea. You shouldn't punish them for not finding out how to play but you don't have to let them pass until they do. Executing this poorly can definitely work against the game and cause frustration and will have to be designed carefully. I have had one too many "What am I supposed to do!?" moments in games when I was supposed to learn something, didn't, and felt overly punished and stuck in a rut. Usually stopping a player from continuing due to not knowing the controls seems o.k. when the actions corresponding to those controls are simple, on or off kind of thing (jump, shoot, run, etc.).

Once you get passed controls and you begin showing the player game concepts it gets a little easier to show them organically.

Edited by Mario D., 29 September 2012 - 11:51 PM.





Old topic!
Guest, the last post of this topic is over 60 days old and at this point you may not reply in this topic. If you wish to continue this conversation start a new topic.



PARTNERS