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JimmyShimmy

Power: What Every Player Wants

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Games are a form of electronic entertainment. A modern title very much resembles an interactive movie. Most games tell a story, set the routes, tell you the rules, give you your bearings and then it’s off until you win, it’s the end or you can’t be bothered with it anymore. During your journey you were probably called upon to use you logic, reflexes, observation skills, memory etc to solve + defeat to progress-this is supposed to satisfy and it’s all about how it was done and how you did it-to find that balance of satisfaction with what was required of you and how much frustration it induced-an individuals preference for which there are no guidelines for. Every game has limitations and you will tire of it in time but there are often aspects/potential propositions of a title that instil you with that child-like excitement (even if it was short lived). It’s that feeling that there are ‘no limitations’ and if you can imbue that into the player you have achieved the greatest merit of tricking the player into thinking that this is not just a game but like a third arm for the players desires. Games are games-many of them including story’s/styles that appeal to you for a number of reasons and things you won’t like about them for a number of reason’s. Perhaps the ‘GTA’ series success can be attributed to the simple fact it lets you do WHAT YOU WANT in a whole playground of interactive extremities. In a game you want reactions. It’s not fun when you attempt to slice NPC’s to find they just stand impassively and your blade goes right through them. This is because it’s another reminder that this is a game that you HAVE to play a certain way. Games are about enjoyment/doing things you are not usually allowed to do and naturally we are use to the rules and consequences in our reality and will quickly yell “that’s bollocks!“ if we are losing or unable to carry out seemingly simple actions. When you watch gamers they are always trying to do things differently and normally say ‘damn….damn’ 900 times after realising the 900 things they are unable/not allowed to do. Like I said all games are limited and always will be-what’s the benchmark for satisfying everything at every turn?…there isn’t one, but players want power and GTA’s NPC’s are great eye-opening assets in the title: In games where you shoot the enemy it’s cool to see them fly and explode compliments of your heavy artillery but it’s even better when they surrender or run for their life screaming-this makes you feel great as your essentially playing god (Same with Half-Life’s scientists-how many times did you kill them for there reaction?)-while there is law and order in allot of the world there will always be crime for the simple fact virtually everyone enjoys getting up to mischief, getting one up on somebody or getting away from a sticky situation intact. It’s the thrill of the chase-the chance to be a rebel-it relates to us all physiologically and we love the adrenaline rush it gives us. It’s said “We feel most alive when closest to death” so we can automatically relate to GTA’s police enforcements and then getting away to great satisfaction. It’s strange but being evil is what most do in games (if given the choice). We are not 100% free in this world/reality and can get like a new lease of life through a game and it’s reactions. The problem is all this satisfaction that comes in certain titles are often crucified for their controversy. Kid’s often perform the acts of their favourite games and get in trouble-what does this say? Well ones things for sure allot of people are not happy with the list of ‘do’s’ and don’ts’ put in front of them everyday and games potentially satisfy their need for a real thrill…

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Too general.

People play games because they find whatever it is fun; it's not always because the actions in the games are illegal. Sports games and completely unrealistic games (Tetris, Mario) are giant examples of games that people find fun that aren't illegal in real life.


Also, when someone shoots a gaurd in a game to get a reaction; it is just to get a reaction. The act of shooting the gaurd isn't fun, but his unrealistic reaction often is.

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Quote:
Original post by Daniel Miller
Too general.


My statement is very loose ended I agree-I was more going off on a tangent than focusing on a single point.

Quote:

People play games because they find whatever it is fun; it's not always because the actions in the games are illegal. Sports games and completely unrealistic games (Tetris, Mario) are giant examples of games that people find fun that aren't illegal in real life.


I am not disputing that-just pointing out how we can really relate and become absorbed from simulated real life event's like robbing a bank/killing a person.

Quote:

Also, when someone shoots a gaurd in a game to get a reaction; it is just to get a reaction. The act of shooting the gaurd isn't fun, but his unrealistic reaction often is.


That's kinda what I was talking about. You get a buzz from reactions like that because you can watch the simulated actions of what a person would do off something you are not likely to do in 'this' reality.

The more reactions there are in a game the greater chance of the player becoming more enthralled/captivated as there are more options and problems to iron out that you may have created.

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As Daniel Miller already stated, your writeup is too broad of a generalization. And I mean this with all due respect: it seems that your entire missive is based on your observations on only a comparatively small segment of games (and gamers) in existence. For example, you wrote:

Quote:
1. "Games are a form of electronic entertainment"

Incorrect. A significant number of games aren't electronic at all. Maybe you were referring to "computer/video" games?

Quote:
2. "A modern title very much resembles an interactive movie"

Incorrect. There is very little similarity between the two. REAL Interactive movies are nothing more than audio-visual choose-your-own adventures: a far cry from most modern video/computer game titles.

Quote:
3. "When you watch gamers they are always trying to do things differently and normally say ‘damn….damn’ 900 times after realising the 900 things they are unable/not allowed to do."

How often does this happen in Tetris, Chess, Magical Drop, Galaga, Pac Man, etc? I only see that happen in poorly designed games.

Quote:
4. "Games are about enjoyment/doing things you are not usually allowed to do"

Not fully correct. Games ARE about enjoyment, but "doing things you are not usually allowed to do" only enters the equation in comparatively few games, not all.

Quote:
5. "It’s the thrill of the chase-the chance to be a rebel-it relates to us all physiologically and we love the adrenaline rush it gives us"

The thrill of the chase, maybe, but "chance to be a rebel"? How many games satisfy THAT desire? Chess? Turn-based Strategy games? Sports games? Simulations? Mario? etc. And how many gamers actually have that desire?

Quote:
6. "It’s strange but being evil is what most do in games (if given the choice). We are not 100% free in this world/reality and can get like a new lease of life through a game and it’s reactions."

Incorrect. Other than young (mostly teen) males with a taste for violence, what is the actual percentage of people who fit this description? A lot of people don't even PLAY certain games because they're too violent/depraved for their mindsets.


And so on and so forth.

As Daniel Miller said, people play games because they find whatever it is fun, and not for most of the reasons you listed.

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Quote:
Original post by GemuhDesayinah
Incorrect. A significant number of games aren't electronic at all. Maybe you were referring to "computer/video" games?


Correct.

Quote:

Incorrect. There is very little similarity between the two. REAL Interactive movies are nothing more than audio-visual choose-your-own adventures: a far cry from most modern video/computer game titles.


A far cry? I guess you mean in the sense that most games already have the story put in front of you to complete as many games pose you with different routes via your own choice.

Quote:

How often does this happen in Tetris, Chess, Magical Drop, Galaga, Pac Man, etc? I only see that happen in poorly designed games.


Really? I find it happens all the time-I get my expectations up about where I'll be aloud to venture off and what's going to unfold etc and end up dissapointed-I'm talking about revered games-HL2, Mario 64 etc.

You are specifying though-I am clearly generalizing.

Quote:

Not fully correct. Games ARE about enjoyment, but "doing things you are not usually allowed to do" only enters the equation in comparatively few games, not all.


Agreed, that was just me being caught up in the moment.

Quote:

The thrill of the chase, maybe, but "chance to be a rebel"? How many games satisfy THAT desire? Chess? Turn-based Strategy games? Sports games? Simulations? Mario? etc. And how many gamers actually have that desire?


Being a rebel and getting one up on people yes-even in those games. Fouling players on a soccer field, fiendishly upping all your defence on a turned based strategy game to really draw out a battle and throwing the little Penquin off the cliff in Mario 64 are some fun actions to do in those games.

knocking players off the track in snowboard and driving games is common stuff.

How many...dunno-but my post was mainly about GTA and my belief that it's success is down to it's proposition of allowing you to kill people, steal vehicles and fight off a police force-fun because it's naughty.

Quote:

Incorrect. Other than young (mostly teen) males with a taste for violence, what is the actual percentage of people who fit this description? A lot of people don't even PLAY certain games because they're too violent/depraved for their mindsets.


You're correct but aren't young teens with a taste for violence the 'mass market'?

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Mario throwing a penguin off a cliff? Come on.

When people do stuff in games it's not because they want to do it in real life; I'd say it's because it's just something else to do while wandering around in the game.

It looks like you are damning everyone; saying that we play games to take out our evil desires. Sorry, but a completely un-evil person can enjoy Halo, because it's a fun game. Not every act of "violence" in games (Yoshi eating a Koopa) translates to an evil desire in real life.

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Ah... I like threads that broadly generalize games. [grin]

I think you hit close to the mark, but I would take a more psychological approach.

Whats so interesting about doing things we arent allowed to do anyway? Are we not driven by our curiosity? It's our innate (well for those who still have it [wink]) desire to try/learn/do something new.

We play games because they tickle our brains with novel, playful challenges. Tetris first taught you hand-eye coordination with blocks on the screen. Chess first taught you to think several moves ahead before acting. And so on and so forth.

These are basic ideas but every new game you play, you learn new tricks. Imagine yourself in a Doom level, a door opens up, bad guys roar to life in front of you--now you have to choose, the plasma gun wasting precious ammo for a quick out or take a beating and take em down slow with the shotgun? Every time you make choices like this, you learn more.

Until of course, you've nothing left to learn--then you move on.

With my broad definition, pretty much anything could count as a game. But I dont think it works this way.

Our curiosities are limited. We do not feel curious about everything. There are areas which show promise in being useful--areas that interest us. Our minds then desire to grow in these directions, remember well and reward us for new knowledge here. I wont pretend to know exactly how our brains decide what is promising or not, but I do believe there is truth to this.
Quote:
... young (mostly teen) males with a taste for violence ...
Young males in all species are aggresive and interested in violence and domination/power. The stereotypical 14-year-old loves shooters and MMORPGs which give him power over others, power to "pwn" and "pk" and otherwise show off how many hundreds of hours he's sunk into a particular game. As we age, we learn more subtle ways of controlling our environment and our interests tread elsewhere.

Which is why the kids love GTA and hate math. [grin]

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What Players Want??

Lots of stuff already written on this. A good place to start would be here.

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Quote:
Young males in all species are aggresive and interested in violence and domination/power.


Eh... most people are like that. There isn't a person on this planet who wouldn't want to brag about their high score. For many games these "violent kids" are playing, that's about as far as the competition goes.

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Lots of stuff already written on this. A good place to start would be here.
Interesting read, and you could even extend the reasoning beyond MUDs. I think the author does generalize way too much however. Reminds me of horoscopes. [wink]

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