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Lubb

Motivating Progress

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- Let''s say we have a game set inside a building. The player will start on the first floor, and the game''s conclusion is somewhere at the top of the building. What (do you think) is the best way to motivate progress in a game? As I see it, there are only two ways: the players can be enticed by greater rewards at higher levels (and also presented with increasing numbers/increasing toughness of enemies), or they can be driven out of their current position by enemies advancing "behind" them. - Most games I see usually offer greater rewards, and only ocasionally during play rely on advancing enemies to dislocate the player. -To put a real example in your head, let''s say we made another version of Half-Life. It starts out like normal but we modified it so that for every fifteen or thirty seconds you stayed in a level, one more monster would ''transport'' in, at some point near you and between you and the only way to exit the level. As it stands, you can kill all the monsters on a level and then go around picking up anything you want that''s there, which is about as exiting as taking out the garbage. -There''s a couple places in the game where headrabs just keep comin'', and they are definitely high-stress areas to be hanging around near. If the whole game was like that, would it be more interesting to play, or less? - Lubb

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- It seems to me, to be much more exciting during those moments when you are being chased by an enemy that you cannot defeat, than when you are on the offensive and picking off enemies that are easy to kill. - MC

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It seems to me that you could use your environment to motivate your players to move on in the game. In some games, it would not be very hard to make progress an urgent necessity. For example, if you have a FPS game where the player is fighting in a damaged (or infested) space station, the oxygen supply in the station could be nil. Only be reaching certain locations that have oxygen refill tanks (a limited supply), can your player breathe and survive. By doing something like this, you force you player into constant movement.

Unfortunately a side effect to this is you may lose some players who like to take it slow and plan their attacks.

borngamer


Man was born to game, we only work to pay for our toys!

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Wasn''t there actually a game just like that? I forget what it was called, but I remember it .

Null and Void
"In this house we obey the laws of thermodynamics!" --Homer Simpson

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quote:
.....For example, if you have a FPS game where the player is fighting in a damaged (or infested) space station, the oxygen supply in the station could be nil. Only be reaching certain locations that have oxygen refill tanks (a limited supply), can your player breathe and survive. By doing something like this, you force you player into constant movement. ..... -borngamer

- That''s not quite the same situation: assuming the space station example, forcing the player to find oxygen tanks forces them towards a certain point. Increasing numbers of marauding monsters forces the player to simply keep moving , because you can''t kill off all the monsters. - Lubb

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Guest Anonymous Poster
Speaking for those who like to explore games, I do not really like games that use a time limit to motivate me. I play slowly, and often spend time screwing around just to see what happens. While I understand the need for time limits, it should be a very long time relative to the time I need to complete the action in a direct manner.

I don''t think player motivation can be generated well from game mechanics. This tends to hurt the atmosphere, I think.

There are better ways: 1) Establish exiting the top as the victory condition. Players understand this very well.
2) Story or plot

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One thing you'd have to accont for is that the players may not know that they can't kill all the mosters and may get frustrated.

It would be interesting if you could change the way the players think and actually convince them that they must retreat. It would be different than most games.


"""" "'Nazrix is cool' -- Nazrix" --Darkmage --Godfree"-Nazrix" -- runemaster --and now dwarfsoft" -- dwarfsoft --pouya" -- Nazrix
""You see... I'm not crazy... you see?!? Nazrix believes me!" --Wavinator
Need help? Well, go FAQ yourself.


Edited by - Nazrix on October 10, 2000 9:12:33 PM

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I think being driven is a damn fine idea! Yes, you''ll lose folks who want to explore, but (fortunately or unfortunately) a game can''t be all things to all people.

A favorite arcade shooter of mine is a game called Swarm. In it you''re trying to collect little energy doodads while enemies keep warping into the level. The longer it takes you on the higher levels, the more waves keep coming in.

What could be really cool would be to use this mechanic to your advantage: Think of classic monster movies, like Night of the Living Dead. The monsters are everywhere, and it''s getting worse and worse. Your only choice is to hole up, dash out, try to make it to the stairs, or hairy elevator shaft climb, or a lil'' walk out on the ledge 20 floors up.

Maybe you could allow players to bar doors, create barricades, and ultimately try to get to the rooftop (and freedom!)

Just make sure you tell players what''s up, and what their in for. I think many will go for it.

--------------------
Just waiting for the mothership...

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Alien vs. Predator

And in my opinion it sucked royally.


People might not remember what you said, or what you did, but they will always remember how you made them feel.
~ (V)^|) |<é!t|-| ~

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going from the bottom to the top of a building when something is chasing you is just plain stupid. You''re basically cornering yourself. How about this-- you parachute onto the top of the building to infultrate it and accomplish some task. You plan to go back to the roof and repel down the side of the building or take a helicopter out or do a BASE jump or something. You''ve been told it should be a piece of cake. But when you get to the objective, you see that you''ve been watched the entire time and that they''ve blocked off the roof with mucho baddies that you could abviously not get through. The baddies don''t know that you know that they know that your there (whew...that''s a mouthful), so they concetrate most of their efforts on the roof. So instead, you decide to blast your way through the front. This gives a few baddies in front of you, while a ton of them behind you forcing you along. You can''t kill all of them, but maybe a few, and you''ll have to shoot over you shoulder while running. Watch out for them stair wells! And don''t take the elevator, because you know they''ll be waiting for you at the next floor.


shut up
CAN I GET A WOO WOO!

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