• Announcements

    • khawk

      Download the Game Design and Indie Game Marketing Freebook   07/19/17

      GameDev.net and CRC Press have teamed up to bring a free ebook of content curated from top titles published by CRC Press. The freebook, Practices of Game Design & Indie Game Marketing, includes chapters from The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, and An Architectural Approach to Level Design. The GameDev.net FreeBook is relevant to game designers, developers, and those interested in learning more about the challenges in game development. We know game development can be a tough discipline and business, so we picked several chapters from CRC Press titles that we thought would be of interest to you, the GameDev.net audience, in your journey to design, develop, and market your next game. The free ebook is available through CRC Press by clicking here. The Curated Books The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, Second Edition, by Jesse Schell Presents 100+ sets of questions, or different lenses, for viewing a game’s design, encompassing diverse fields such as psychology, architecture, music, film, software engineering, theme park design, mathematics, anthropology, and more. Written by one of the world's top game designers, this book describes the deepest and most fundamental principles of game design, demonstrating how tactics used in board, card, and athletic games also work in video games. It provides practical instruction on creating world-class games that will be played again and again. View it here. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, by Joel Dreskin Marketing is an essential but too frequently overlooked or minimized component of the release plan for indie games. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing provides you with the tools needed to build visibility and sell your indie games. With special focus on those developers with small budgets and limited staff and resources, this book is packed with tangible recommendations and techniques that you can put to use immediately. As a seasoned professional of the indie game arena, author Joel Dreskin gives you insight into practical, real-world experiences of marketing numerous successful games and also provides stories of the failures. View it here. An Architectural Approach to Level Design This is one of the first books to integrate architectural and spatial design theory with the field of level design. The book presents architectural techniques and theories for level designers to use in their own work. It connects architecture and level design in different ways that address the practical elements of how designers construct space and the experiential elements of how and why humans interact with this space. Throughout the text, readers learn skills for spatial layout, evoking emotion through gamespaces, and creating better levels through architectural theory. View it here. Learn more and download the ebook by clicking here. Did you know? GameDev.net and CRC Press also recently teamed up to bring GDNet+ Members up to a 20% discount on all CRC Press books. Learn more about this and other benefits here.
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
Roots

Your most depised game "features"

142 posts in this topic

Quote:
Original post by Kaze
Quote:
Original post by Zanshibumi
Quote:
Original post by treetrunker
There should be no best character build
I must be misunderstanding you. Are you saying that you should be able to take any decision while building your character and there should be no difference in usefulness? That a totally random build, choosing skills and attributes by coin-toss should be as good as the best calculated combination of skill synergies?

I don't think I'd play such a game.
yes they should, otherwise your just punishing the player for not understanding the games often nonsensical play mechanics

the problem is there is no strategy involved other than mabey "buy the strategy guide" or "read the optimal build guide on game faq"
I've never seen a game that requires an even remotely optimal build. Outside of Diablo II, I suppose. Every RPG I've played that allows customizable builds has enough room for you to experiment a bit without making the game unplayable. While you may not get the most effective results, that just means that the game is slightly harder to complete. Not impossible by any stretch of the word.

I do think that customized level-up mechanisms could be simpler, but given that they basically exist to give the obsessive players something to do, I'm not terribly concerned about them.
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by Zanshibumi
If you make wrong moves in chess, you lose.


How long is a single game of chess? How long is a single game of a MMORPG?

EDIT: Fixed attribution (I think the quote was fine, though?).

Quote:
Original post by Derakon
I've never seen a game that requires an even remotely optimal build. Outside of Diablo II, I suppose. Every RPG I've played that allows customizable builds has enough room for you to experiment a bit without making the game unplayable. While you may not get the most effective results, that just means that the game is slightly harder to complete. Not impossible by any stretch of the word.


But shouldn't the person who's more skilled be given the harder challenges to keep things interesting for him? Shouldn't the easier challenges be given to the newbie who's just learning the ropes?

[Edited by - Way Walker on May 8, 2007 5:10:20 PM]
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Game: Dune II
Feature: You can only select one unit at a time
Comments: Okay, so maybe the technology and what not wasn't good enough in 1992, but honestly, one unit at a time? By the time you've told your army to attack, there is a nice little stream of army units headed toward the enemy. Problem: your units end up in a single file line, so the first half die without even getting a shot off.

Game: Dune II
Feature: Sonic Tanks
Comments: These were cool and all, but you can't use them in a combination with any other units, otherwise you'd kill yourself. At least make your own units immune to the friendly fire.

Game: Dune II
Feature: The freaking Ornithopter!
Comments: Why can't you control these little devils!?! You spend 600 to watch your unit attack a tiny turret! Stupid things attack the Palace, not the wall!

Game: Dune II
Feature: Saboteur
Comments: For the special, ultimate unit for Ordos, I'd expect something more like an army of Saboteurs. They can only kill a single building, but they rarely ever make it there. It's lame.

Game: Dune II
Feature: Harvester and Caryall AI
Comments: There's more spice than one could ever wish for in to the left of your base, but when your Harvester is done harvesting to the right of your base, it just sits there waiting for a sandworm. And don't even get me started on Caryalls.

Game: Dune II
Feature: Spice Credit bug
Comments: If you harvest a ton of spice and get above some odd number, then your total freaks out and ends up giving you credits when you spend credits, and subtracting credits when your harvester returns with spice.

Sorry, this probably is being to harsh on the greatest game ever invented. But these are some really big nags of mine. But I really truly do love the game more than anything else that I've ever played
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by Way Walker
*Misquote*


I'll open a new thread to avoid derailing this one.

http://www.gamedev.net/community/forums/topic.asp?topic_id=447126
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Game: Xbox live
Feature: Needless Online mode/achievements
Comments: it seams that every game in existence must have an online component to it now. Some games are meant to be single player and that is alright. I don’t need to know that I am better at the trampoline game in Leisure Suit Larry: Magna Cum Laude then my buddy and I don’t need to be rewarded with an achievement for entering the options screen of madden.
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Game: Final Fantasy XII, plus many other RPGs
Feature: useless/purposeless abilities that are never used
Comments: I hate it when an RPG gives you some 100+ skills or whatever and less than half of those are actually useful. FFXII was notorious in this aspect for their "techniques", of which I only ever found one in the game to actually be of any use. Don't add content to a game for the sake of adding content; make each action have some sort of useful purpose.
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Games that have Autosave that makes the game pause for way too long (and frequently) and which you cant deactivate. How hard can it be to serialize the
gamestate IN MEMORY (quite quick) and then have a background thread write the file without disrupting the game ??


Mini maps in 'crawling ant' games where you want to jump to a location instantly to supervise/adjust orders but the morons who wrote it (and apparently didnt actually play test the game) make your main view scroll along in jumps to the
location you pointed to on the mini-map (and to put icing on the cake, you cant use that minimap in 'pause' mode -- so precious time goes by while the dim game slowly steps along to the desired location).

Games where you click and drag to make a selector box around units, but the mouse events are not on a seperate thread and slow rendering interferes, making it miss reading your click events and forcing many attempts to define a box fail.
Im supposed to be fighting the computer driven opponents -- NOT the &^%$# lame interface.

God view (3D) camera views that dont have rotation/zoom event aggregation so they space out the adjustments frame by frame AND when the rendering slows down and your feedback with controlling the the view adjustments (buttons or mouse) is disrupted AND you over compensate it just gets worse and worse (sometimes stringing out 'adjustments' for 15 seconds after you stop all input). It isnt that hard to parse a queue of accumulating camera commands and start consolidating the small adjustements into fewer large adjustments when the frame rate drops.
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Games: Warcraft III, Starcraft
Feature: Piercing, Magic, Chaos, Normal Damage v. Unarmored, Light, Medium, Heavy, Hero Armor (and whatever the damages and defenses were in Starcraft).
Comments: Honestly, the concept is somewhat cool and allows for very skilled players to be much more effective. However, the massive number of options and combinations require such intense concentration, planning, and skill that the other 'features' of the games (micromanagement, unit selection and control, units not knowing how to cast things on their own) make the system impossible to use properly. Worse yet, Starcraft never even told you that there were different types of damage - and thus, you never understood why your Ghosts couldn't kill anything.

...Yet both were truly awesome games.

Game: Battlefield 2
Feature: Unlocking weapons in online play that are not available in single player.
Comments: Oh, come on! I'm a Master Sergeant and have all these nice guns unlocked, but I can only use them if I play online?! There's not even a cheat to turn them on in singleplayer - I'd like to practice with the weapons, thank you very much. I think I already ranted about the UI...
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Games: Lots of console RPG's, the one I played most recently, Enchanted Arms
Feature: Random encounters
Description: I'm running through a sewer, towards a ladder, and suddenly I'm in combat. Why didn't I see the attackers?

That is, by far, the most annoying thing I've experienced in any game, ever. It completely breaks up the pacing, and in doing so, breaks the immersion.
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by Rulzern
Games: Lots of console RPG's, the one I played most recently, Enchanted Arms
Feature: Random encounters
Description: I'm running through a sewer, towards a ladder, and suddenly I'm in combat. Why didn't I see the attackers?

That is, by far, the most annoying thing I've experienced in any game, ever. It completely breaks up the pacing, and in doing so, breaks the immersion.


For me that is not a despised feature, but can definately be irritating at times. What about on the Final Fantasy World Map?

KungFooMasta
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by Avatar God
Game: Battlefield 2
Feature: Unlocking weapons in online play that are not available in single player.
Comments: Oh, come on! I'm a Master Sergeant and have all these nice guns unlocked, but I can only use them if I play online?! There's not even a cheat to turn them on in singleplayer - I'd like to practice with the weapons, thank you very much. I think I already ranted about the UI...


I completely agree, and there's more I despise about this feature. Why should I go into an online multiplayer competitive game and people have an equipment advantage over me? I thought competitive FPS was about player skill. This makes BF2 more like MMORPGs where the more time you play the better equipment you get.

I also agree with the UI thing. If your game needs a "Loading..." screen to get to the menu, you should redesign what's on the menu. Additionally...

Game: Burnout 3 (Takedown I think it is called)
Feature: Restarting a race after losing. The game has to reload the level.
Comments: I just ran this race, why does the game have to spend like half a minute reloading it? I hate loading times in general but this game seemed especially bad. If I recall correctly, you can circumvent the reload by not actually finishing the race but going to the pause menu midrace and choosing restart from there. Oh yeah, there is also a long reload if you want to change cars.

I really hope the next game revolution is not graphics or physics or AI, but eliminating "Loading..." screens.
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Game: Dungeon Siege 2 (and of course plenty of others):
Feature: More party members than you can use at once, and the party members you aren't using don't level.
Comments: Yeah, so why are they there? If only the four people I'm using remain remotely useful as the game invariably scales up the stats (so that a wolf becomes a dire wolf with every stat doubled and there's the same number of wolves per group, but hey all my stats doubled too) then there's really no point to having those other people. Do you really expect me to play through your entire rpg (in a genre which prides itself on how many hours it takes to finish, and is considered a ripoff if that's less than 20 or 30) again just to hear the other people's dialogue interjections? Whichever characters I am not using immediately after recieving them are going to sit in the inn for the ENTIRE game, or alternately perhaps the entire game except the one side quest that arbitrarily requires this character in your party. Unless you're expecting me to dump the characters I've invested time and thought into guiding the leveling of for clean slates of equal level as they come up, but if we're going on the assumption that evolving your character is entertaining enough to justify leveling (it rarely is, but at least it's some consolation), the only reason I'd ever do that is if I screwed him up.

Game: Many, but most notably for me some fairly recent Castlevanias
Feature: Mixing a leveling system and hidden permanent "Max HP/MP/ammo increase" items into an action game.
Comments: Ugh! I hate this. If it is an action game, which it is, I want it to be an action game. In other words, player skill, not avatar skill! At most let me equip a few items that grant equivalent but different bonuses (such as a little extra damage or defense or ammo or MP or reach), acquire abilities after beating each level/boss and let me get a few preset max increase items. Otherwise, I lose all sense of accomplishment because I can't really tell myself I beat any section; after all, how do I know I wasn't five levels higher than the writer intended me to be? Oh, and goes double for collecting potions.

Game: Most "exploration" type games such as Castlevania and Metroid, or any game where you learn new abilities as you go.
Feature: Abilities that are really keys.
Comments: This is just plain false advertising here. I have nothing against finding a key after beating the boss, but I feel cheated when I find an ability like "Push heavy blocks", "Break cracked blocks", "Go through something painful like lava without taking damage", and so on. Maybe they threw in a requisite and terribly annoying and pointless block pushing puzzle, but otherwise this "ability" just lets you enter the next level and a couple siderooms with powerups. At least be honest with us and don't call them new abilities. If you ask me, the only thing they should call abilities is if it is either usable in some concievable form in combat (an attack, an air dash, a roll, etc), usable in some kind of other skill-based area (hmm. . . a magnetic item that lets you pivot around certain preset magnetic tiles to cross gaps? I guess double jump and dash count both here and in the combat category) extremely helpful/useful in getting around quickly (the requisite endgame flight item, double jump, air dash, phasing through enemies for a second so you don't have to slow down and fight them), or used in a large number of extremely good puzzles (if your name is not Zelda, you will not get this category so just skip the timewasters). If it isn't one of those, it's just a key. And please, let us start with the run boots and double jump; they're everywhere, you win no creativity points including them. And I'm really looking at you, Zelda-games-where-you-need-an-item-to-jump.

Game: Same category; games where you learn abilities, but I've only seen a few bad cases.
Feature: Expecting you to be able to use something you just found effectively.
Comments: I'm not talking about double jumps and stuff, but some games have unusual abilities that you are basically not given time to adjust to. Sometimes it takes the form as a boss right after getting it, more often though it'll just take the form of a really important and useful ability that you get too late in the game so that you never get used to it (For example, in the freeware game Eternal Daughter, there's an ability that lets you do a flip while jumping which makes you invincible for a moment and also does a small ammount of damage around you. This is an awesome and fun ability, but it is THE key to every remaining boss battle and most remaining levels and you get it two thirds of the way through. Not so bad if it were standard, but hitting the flip button isn't what your mind has been trained to think of by this point when it sees an attack coming in this or similar games and the timing has to be just right.). I've had abilities in more actiony games that I didn't learn to use properly until my second playthrough because they were granted three levels from the finale, and I just slugged through the boss. Please, put any really unusual or hard-to-master abilities near the start.

Game: Almost all action and RPG, especially anything remotely similar to Megaman.
Feature: Bosses are the real game and the rest is a joke.
Comments: I'm all for hard bosses, but in the typical game in one of these genres it is much easier to get through the entire level without taking a hit than to beat the boss period (this can appear on both ends of the difficulty spectrum, by the way). Even otherwise classic games fail to escape this trap. Seriously, add more tricky/shooting enemies to the stages or increase the damage of stage enemies until it is, if not up to par, at least worthy of being in the same game as the level boss.
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by Brickman
Game: Most "exploration" type games such as Castlevania and Metroid, or any game where you learn new abilities as you go.
Feature: Abilities that are really keys.
Comments: This is just plain false advertising here. I have nothing against finding a key after beating the boss, but I feel cheated when I find an ability like "Push heavy blocks", "Break cracked blocks", "Go through something painful like lava without taking damage", and so on. Maybe they threw in a requisite and terribly annoying and pointless block pushing puzzle, but otherwise this "ability" just lets you enter the next level and a couple siderooms with powerups. At least be honest with us and don't call them new abilities. If you ask me, the only thing they should call abilities is if it is either usable in some concievable form in combat (an attack, an air dash, a roll, etc), usable in some kind of other skill-based area (hmm. . . a magnetic item that lets you pivot around certain preset magnetic tiles to cross gaps? I guess double jump and dash count both here and in the combat category) extremely helpful/useful in getting around quickly (the requisite endgame flight item, double jump, air dash, phasing through enemies for a second so you don't have to slow down and fight them), or used in a large number of extremely good puzzles (if your name is not Zelda, you will not get this category so just skip the timewasters). If it isn't one of those, it's just a key. And please, let us start with the run boots and double jump; they're everywhere, you win no creativity points including them. And I'm really looking at you, Zelda-games-where-you-need-an-item-to-jump.


Agreed with the above. Especially in Castlevania:PoR, there were certain abilites that allowed you to push blocks, and they just unlocked the path to the next part of the castle. Those abilities were rarely used again. The same goes with the hop-on partner jump ability; why not give me the double-jump at that point instead? This just felt like an extra "key" to obtain.

On a related note:

Game: Metroid Prime 2
Feature: Abilities which are acquired so late in the game that there are never that many chances to use it before the game is completed
Comments: I was quite excited that the screw attack would finally appear in a 3D Metroid game. However, you've gone through practically 80% of the game before finding it. I think it was used for one or 2 puzzles (this kinda fits into the "abilities as keys" category).

Game: Various
Feature: Excessive fetch quests, especially those that are multi-staged
Comments: I don't mind a fetch quest once in while, but the game shouldn't be loaded with them. The worst are the ones that when you finally collect the item(s) that are needed, the quest giver asks for more, and goes on and on...
Examples:
A certain side quest in FFXII in the desert, and in Paper Mario: 1000 Year Door (you wanted me to buy one of item X which is not sold nearby, I bought it, came back to you and now you said that you wanted 2 of item X and now I gotta go all the way back and buy another! Why didn't you say you wanted 2 in the first place ?!?!)

Game: Various
Feature: New Game+ features, except that certain key items/abilities are taken away from you
Comments: I always like the New Game+ feature, it allows you to start a new game with all of your equipment that you had previously. It is useful if you want to play through a game a second time but don't want to do the grinding or ability collecting. Except that certain games take away various things that you've already acquired in your first playthrough.

Example:
In Castlevania:PoR, you no longer have key abilities like double-jump and the super jump when starting a New Game+. These would speed up successive runs significantly. Who cares if it allows me to do things out of order? I've already beaten the game once and know where everything is located at anyway.
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Game: Secret of Mana Games
Feature: Spinning wheel of Pain & Suffering
Comments: You just finish pummeling a tough group of monsters, your peckish for health, and you need some healing items. Yus! That mob left behind a chest, I pop it open for my well earned... Why is there a roulette? Why are only 3 of the 99 possibilities labled "won't impale/poison/spear/spike/spork you"? When you fight monsters and earn any sort of small item, you're hard earned reward shouldn't be laced with 50% punishment.

I'm all for chests just sitting there, already, having the possibility of being trapped. That's a valid risk. That's part of the dungeon trying to kill you. it could be armor or weapons, worth being impaled over, or coming back for later; But not what you just worked so hard to earn. Especially when you know that as soon as you hit the next screen that item may be lost forever.
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Game: Final Fantasy XII
Feature: Having to collect the gambits to program your allies
Comments: Okay, for me the idea for the gambit system is what I really bought the game for. I actually don't like having to input repeated commands for my characters and the gambit system really helped.

Unfortunately, it turns out that my allies are incapable of telling if they have any MP unless you slog halfway across the country smashing barrels and hopefully get a little slip of paper that says "SELF MP > 50%"

I can understand having to pay for them... or even some limiter like "You need to be level 10 before you can tell if your ally is poisoned." or something like that... but if my allies are incapable of telling if their health or mana is running out then there is something wrong with them.

Anyway, the gambit system is a neat feature but it a real pain if I can't actually get the right parts to use it until the late game.

================

Game: Final Fantasy XII and other RPG's
Feature: Having to trek halfway across the planet for something that for all intents and purposes should be sold at the corner drug store.

================

Game: Final Fantasy XII, and X
Feature: A level-advancement system that is extremely abstracted and makes almost no sense. (i.e. the sphere grid and the license board.)
Comments:I just tried playing with non of my team members wielding any weapons. However, to get to the one square that lets me punch stuff to a decent extent I have to go through all the "increase magic ability" "Potion effectiveness boosted" and other unrelated stuff. Its interesting if every single boxer in Ivalice is also a professional chemist and battle-wizard.
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Game: Oblivion
Feature: 'The Arena Fan'
Description: Don't get me wrong, TESIV: Oblivion is one heck of a game, but that fan was just plain annoying.
On the other hand, it was fun throwing him off a mountain...gna gna gna[grin]!

Seriously. I don't see why they put him in the game.

-Stenny
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Most games I play, particularly from Nintendo, don't seem to get their dialogue windows right. Just last week, I played through Super Metroid again. Memories... Problem was the dialogue window that pops up every time you pick up a new item lasts just a bit too long. Remember, it plays that song, and then the window stays on the screen for what seems like a second or two more. Why?

Zelda: OoT had similar problems. I'd really like to have been able to skip through all that game's dialogue, or at least speed it up. Thankfully, Majora's Mask, Wind Waker and Twilight Princess were all better at this.

A game's UI should support a player's impatience just as well as another player's interest in reading. Sometimes, I want to read everything. I want to see if there was something in the story that I missed, and I'm genuinely interested in the game world. Other times, I want to play it fast, and a slow dialogue is nothing more than a unnecessary red light.
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote:
Original post by KulSeran
Game: CallOfDuty 1(expantion) and COD2
Feature: AI waits for you


Seconded. Try playing CoD2 on Veteran, you need all the help you can get and you don't get it.

Game: Gears of War
Feature: The A-button is the cover button and the sprint button; if you sprint in anything other than a straight line you find yourself instantly heading for cover when you don't want it. Lost count of the number of times I've died unnecessarily because of that.
Comments: No need for that kind of thing; it wouldn't have hurt to make the cover and run buttons separate. There is the occasion when you're running to escape and don't want to get stuck in cover against your wishes. Heard it could be fixed in Gears of War 2.


0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0