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Game mechanics you like or dislike

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This post from Jamie Fristom's GameDevBlog lists several popular games and their various game mechanics. For example, Half-life 2's mechanics included shooting, driving, physics puzzles, automated turret placement, etc. Basically, ask yourself, "Would I want to replay that level/mission/section, or was I just relieved to finally get past it?". Below are the games, along with my preferences. Feel free to mention other well-known games in your responses. Zelda (Windwaker or Ocarina of Time) LIKE: nonlinear exploration, horseback riding DISLIKE: fighting, puzzle-solving, stealth, boss fights Metroid Prime LIKE: nonlinear exploration DISLIKE: shooting, jumping, boss fights, ball-mode stuff Half-Life 2 LIKE: driving, ant-lion/squad herding, automated turret placement DISLIKE: shooting, "Don't walk on the sand" stealth, physics-puzzle solving Tony Hawk Pro Skater LIKE: tricks, collecting DISLIKE: none GTA Vice City LIKE: driving, rail-shooting, remove-control vehicles DISLIKE: shooting Prince of Persia Sands of Time LIKE: none DISLIKE: fighting, navigating terrain Finally, here are a few that weren't in Jamie's list: LIKE: sniping oblivious AI enemies, grabbing-running-capturing the flag in BF1942 multiplayer CTF

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megaman
Like: Bosses
Dislike: Jumping Puzzles

robotfindskitten
Like: Finding Kitten
Dislike: Not finding Kitten

Dark Cloud
Like: building villages
Dislike: Fighting, Length of dungeons

Super Mario 64
Like: Nonlinear Gameplay
Dislike: Nothing

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Suikoden 4
DISLIKE:
- excessively high random enemy encounter rate
- excessively large map along with slow ship, combined with high encounter rate = hard to get anything done
LIKE:
- the multi-character combo system and how it gets more powerful

Sonic
LIKE:
- the speed
DISLIKE:
- the speed

Tales of Symphonia
LIKE:
- the combat system, though having somewhat of a learning curve
DISLIKE:
- navigating the world map was sometimes clumsy

Ninja Gaiden
LIKE:
- the fast fluid pace and seeming freedom of motion
- the weapon system
DISLIKE:
- the camera that sometimes force you to fight enemies you can't see
- the first person prespective targeting system was a little tough
- seemingly invisible boundaries during some boss fights

Final Fantasy 8
LIKE:
- the sometimes difficult card game
- the world map worked pretty well, like most FF games
- the little graphical touches in the background (though not really a game play thing)
DISLIKE:
- the magic system (vampiric or however you like to call it)

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Far Cry
LIKE:
- Exploration
- Open-ended combat
- Vehicle operation
DISLIKE:
- Restricted (one way corridor/arena) combat
- Protecting an NPC in scripted combat
- Rushing to the next illogically spaced savepoint (a valid tactic in most places)

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How subjective this all is..

Animal Crossing (GC)
LIKES:
- Lots of events.
- Lots of items.
- Sound owns.
- Girls dig the game.
DISLIKES:
- Concept: gametime=realtime is too naive, I can't play the game every day, the whole day, y'know.
- Controls are very unhandy (go to menu equip this and that). Similar dislikage in Zelda games.
- Gameplay too slow.

And still, I think this all is too subjective.

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Wip3out:
LIKE
- winning
- perfecting skill
DISLIKE
- when you want more ships and tracks to play

Tomb Raider I:
LIKE
- main character
- story
- dinosaurs
- exploring
- jumping around multiple enemies shooting them (especially that t rex)
DISLIKE
- long areas of nothing
- mundane tasks

Final Fantasy VII:
LIKE
- japanese anime/philosophically influenced plot
- unique and cool characters
- building up strong characters
- materia
- sephiroth
- emotional moment at the end of disc 1
DISLIKE
- disc 2
- long stretches of nothingness (plot and game wise)
- being forced to battle so many random fights

Abe's Oddessey
LIKE
- character
- world
- puzzles
- main characters weakness and charm
- modification of abe
- abe god
DISLIKE
- bad ending

Chrono Trigger
LIKE
- fast snappy, forseeable fights
DISLIKE
- plot not as in depth
- silent protagonist

Parasite Eve I
LIKE
- excellent plot
- most powers are defensive
- style
- only in new york
- ultimate being
DISLIKE
- only one main character

Red Alert
LIKE
- whole take on WWII
- soviet tactics
- tesla coils power
- building a large base and lots of units
DISLIKE
- not enough units
- needs more tactics


Tiberian Sun
LIKE
- Futuristic appeal
- tactical fighting
DISLIKE
- power of some units (particularly NOD) nullifies most other units
- useless weapons like firewall

The Lost World
LIKE
- you control a raptor
- you control a T Rex
- you control a compognathus
DISLIKE
- old uninnovative 2D platformer

Rayman I (2D)
LIKE
- the style in this game is so awesome its unbelieveable. How artistic can you get? Whoever thought a game character looking like this can be so cool? Not to mention the game art is top notch.
If you don't believe me, just take a look at the first scene where rayman gets his punching power. The whole bit there looks like a dream. My hat goes off to the artists of that game.
DISLIKE
- the engine is really poor
- later levels lose attractiveness and coolness
- gets samey after a while

there are some randomly selected games from my collection.















[Edited by - Genjix on June 9, 2005 9:49:42 AM]

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Um...maybe its just me...but game mechanics are real "nuts and bolts" concepts. Not such overly vauge generalisations as "shooting", "exploreing", "horseback rideing".

Take the boomerang in the original NES Zelda game for example. player presses button and it is thrown. the game mechanics deal with how it interacts with the game world, how it changes the game state, and the pros and cons of its use...if the boomerang touches an enemy it may momentarily freezes it and returns to Link. touches a gem or heart it returns to link with the item...its the game mechanics of the boomerang that realy seperate it from other weapons Link uses..the sword has its own mechanics, the bow and arrows, the fire and ice staff each is different...the unique game mechanics employied are what makes each weapon useful to the player...and by tweeking the game mechanics you are able to balance the gameplay.

effectively a game mechanic is little more then a game rule.

Thus "exploreing" as used thus far in the thread is far too general a concept to be considered a game mechanic...how does the player explore? on foot? in a car? how does "exploreing" effect the game state? What makes this a useful tool at the players disposal? What are the downsides of its use? What game state situations would "exploreing" prove useful? When shouldn't players use "exploreing"?

"shooting" in HL2 is not a game mechanic...But how each of the weapons work within the game world is.

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- World of Warcraft -
LIKE: It's something to do.
DISLIKE: Stunning effects. Random miss/crit rate calculations. Grinding implemented as a way to extend play time and bring in more months of revenue. Automatic attacks. Random stuff in general.

- Diablo II -
LIKE: Fast paced action. Every click does something style combat.
DISLIKE: Random chance to miss/crit.

- Devil May Cry 3 -
LIKE: Combat system.
DISLIKE: Lack of dynamic movement/aiming/attacks.

I pretty much hate everything that's up to chance. It's a copout to creating a simulation realistic enough to result in situations that are believable. Having a set "chance to miss" is a copout to creating a combat system in which players will be unable to hit their enemy a certain number of times. In the former, you loose if the game rolls you badly. In the latter, you loose if you aren't up to par. The second one is fair.

Also, dynamics are good. It's not random chance, it's a complicated series of equations that realistically mimic reality. Not a random number generator piece of crap.

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Quote:
Original post by Nytehauq
I pretty much hate everything that's up to chance. It's a copout to creating a simulation realistic enough to result in situations that are believable. Having a set "chance to miss" is a copout to creating a combat system in which players will be unable to hit their enemy a certain number of times. In the former, you loose if the game rolls you badly. In the latter, you loose if you aren't up to par. The second one is fair.

Also, dynamics are good. It's not random chance, it's a complicated series of equations that realistically mimic reality. Not a random number generator piece of crap.

Player A swings a sword. Player B *attempts* to dodge that swing, basing the reaction on educamated guess what *exactly* kind of swing player A would attempt.

Presuming comparable level of skill for both characters, the outcome of each swing-dodge is going to be fuzzy. Sometimes player A is going to outwit player B and land the blow. Sometimes player B will foresee the attack correctly.

What kind of 'complicated series of equations' would you propose to calculate this behavior, and what difference will it make in the end to the player, when the outcome is still is going to boil down to "sometimes hits, sometimes misses, without any true pattern to it"? (note, that's for two enemies with practically equal skills, not for the easy case when one is superior)

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