Header Ads

The difficulty in videogames.


The difficulty in video games, objectively, does not exist. It is relative to the player's ability, always. Think about the following: For me, keeping the farm in the Stardew Valley can be of astronomical difficulty (it is!), But being incredibly accurate with the Parry in any game with that mechanic comes naturally easy. The developers could also put random things that kill you, like that famous video of the Mario mod that kills you all the time, but it takes away the fun, unless it is to watch someone suffer or that you are masochistic.

  As designers, we try to scale the difficulty at the same time as the player gets better in the understanding of the game mechanics and had a reasonable time to sharpen his skills. Do you know why? For a concept called "Suspension of disbelief." SPOOKY LANGUAGE! Let's see what this fuck is about the suspension of disbelief.

The only way to enjoy Batman vs. Superman: Suspension of disbelief.

This idea refers to when one, as a spectator, leaves critical and / or logical thinking in favor of enjoying something that is obviously not real and lacks logic. The game itself cannot provide us with this. It is something that one as a player has to be willing to do. What the game developer can do is provide all possible tools to avoid getting us out of that state. Glitches, mistakes, people floating like in all Ubisoft games, desynchronized lips and all that kind of mistakes are things that take us out of this feeling of immersion.
Also, the suspension of disbelief is broken with a crazy hard difficulty that takes the player out of this trance. Small adjustments such as Mario and the invisible edges at the end of a jumping platform make the game more permissive than we realize, and that is raised from the design to maintain the illusion of immersion while maintaining the difficulty at entertaining levels.


On the other hand, there are people more likely to remain immersed in the game if they do not forgive and punish the error, as in the case of From Software games. One as a player thinks from that position in which we abandoned critical thinking to enjoy that virtual world, and is helped by the very real feeling that if they kill you, you lose something very important in the game.
Others, like me, help  not to leave that state when the game promotes mundane things but that are necessary for the advancement of the game, as is the case of survival at some point or, masterfully, the recent Red Dead Redemption 2.

All these daily tasks: protect me from the cold, fish, hunt, bathe and others are tools that Rockstar uses in his favor to try to return me, as a player, in that virtual universe they created. As soon as I see that John, after finishing a drink and getting up automatically, makes the chair fly out the window for a badly made collision, that immersion and the suspension of disbelief fade for a moment.

Not only in video games is this concept used ...

When we watch a movie, read a book or play a role-playing game, our small and restless playful mind seeks to generate this state in order to fully enjoy the experience. That is why, although we are in a world clearly false as it can be a movie of The Lord of the Rings, an episode of Game of Thrones or an anime, that coherence within the unreal that it raises is what keeps us about candy If Gandalf suddenly took a bazooka out of his pocket to shake the Balrog, that would be something that our mind would no longer be willing to give up that piece of logic and critical thinking he was doing and would turn into a dodge that, beyond making us laugh , does not achieve the goal of suspending disbelief.


It is those details that give cohesion to a world. That set of rules that, no matter how much we talk about magic, science fiction or other worlds, keeps everything within acceptable parameters that allow us to enjoy that experience. It's the minimum criteria that our head needs to say "ok man, I know this is a big lie as a thing, but you know what? It's well done ... so I'm not going to fuck you with questions of why or which movie thing is illogical. "
The chances also talk that, the more you know (or think) to know something, the harder it will be for you to allow yourself that time of healthy fun and the more you are going to be looking for the cat's fifth leg to the reasoning of the product you are consuming.

It never happened to them that they have THAT friend who fucks with "Interstellar has many flaws regarding how he uses quantum physics models" or "I don't like Big Bang Theory because many of the physics or chemistry jokes they make are not true." We are not interested, we are seeing that to laugh for a while because we were working 9 extra hours on a Sunday, during Christmas, with rain and we stepped on poop. We want to laugh, not learn quantum physics.

The difficulty is an illusion young Padawan ...

The difficulty in video games is always regulated by the developer. This is always looking to interfere as little as possible with this state that I talked about during the post (I will not repeat the name because if I write it again I will scream). So when someone says "This game is a pipe because it is very difficult man" ... tell him what you read, that the difficulty ... after all, does not exist.

El Geek Gourmet
Con tecnología de Blogger.