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azoundria

Death Trivia

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I have long debated what should happen in my game when a character dies. Most games have game over and you back to where you last saved and loose any items but those in the bank. But in these games you can have fun 'torturing' the game character by killing him next to the save spot. Then a sad piece of music plays as the screen fades out and the character falls(only to awaken about 3 seconds later on the save spot). Some games you start the level over again or loose a life. My favorite example of horrible death is Mario. He hits the little bird/mushroom(not sure what it is) and the screen pauses for half a second before he flies 6 feet in the air upside down and falls off the screen. Not very realistic and even worse is if he's big somehow that same bird mushroom thing can crush him(into small mario) as though it were a boulder falling on him. When I make a game I never want anyone dying on purpose multiple time to see the animation, nor do I want something that looks ridiculious. So I brainstormed. I first thought of the most extreme thing, the game uninstalling or locking somehow to prevent further play(way too harsh). Then I thought why not have it so the game locks for an hour. Once that hour is up you can come back and play again. This would work for internet games but people can just set their computer clocks ahead an hour at home. Also a problem is what do people do with that hour. So then I had this neat idea that you also get the option to prove yourself worthy and answer trivia to come back to life before the hour is up. I thought this was a neat idea and am going to likely implement it into my game. I'm wondering what others think of this?

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Uhm...I don't personally know anyone who kills their character just to see the death animation. It's just easier to allow the player to try again, and if they want to mess around and see how many bird/mushrooms they can bounce off of before they fall, more power to 'em, I think.

Games are supposed to be fun, and while additional challenge and sometimes penalties can be fun, I don't believe your suggestion is at all. Experiment with it if you'd like but it would be more frustrating than anything.

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So what percentage of players would be outraged by being locked out of the game for an hour, when it was the game's own fault for killing them, and never play again?

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Frankly, I don't think that this is a good idea.

Firstly, since I like answering trivia, I'd probably kill off my character just to get to answer questions, so I think that completely defeats the purpose you are intending for that feature [smile].

Secondly, why are you wanting to prevent your players from killing off their character? All I can see happening is that players will quit playing your game completely from frustration if you lock them out.

To me, this is somewhat similar to the frequent debates on whether saving should ever be limited in games, except while I can see some merit to the limited saving argument I can't think of any gameplay related reason for introducing a lock-out based on character death except for punishing players. Am I missing something here? How will this feature improve your game?

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This (the one hour ban) sounds like a horrible, frustrating experience you are setting up. Good luck getting anyone to play the game.

I'm not trying to make this a personal attack so don't take it that way, but this has got to be the number one worst 'feature' I've ever heard proposed for a game.

The 'trivia' option is fine, I can think of a few games where you become a ghost and must escape from a dead realm somehow to get back to your game (NoX I think, but I can't quite recall) I wouldn't call it a great idea, but it's feasible wheras the one hour lock-out adds nothing but frustration.

I assume you are looking for 'consequence' for dying. I think that's fine, the problem is when the consequence involves frustration. You don't want your game to be frustrating at all, that's not the point of games. You want to keep your players interested by always having something for them to do. That something can really be anything, but it should be interesting. A one hour lock-out is essentially a horrible idea because it breaks the possibility of continuous play.

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I've had this idea and think its a good one. Often when I play games, dying is not really as big a deal as it should be (highly fatal and tragic).

The idea I had was a game where if your careful you can manage to complete it. But if you die, thats it. Never again.

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What exactly is the reasoning behing punishing the player, or preventing him from playing?

Why does it make your game better?

As a game designer, your goal is not to fight the player at every opportunity, it is to make a game people want to play.

So, how does "lock people out from the game for an hour if they die", or even "force the player to answer pointless questions" translate into "a game people want to play"?

I think you need to grow up, and realize who you're making the game for. Is it for a sadistic game designer to chuckle over? Is it to educate people on what's realistic and what isn't?
Or is it to make something worth playing?

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