Author Topic: The concerns of a jaded gamer.  (Read 10300 times)

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Offline Uroboros

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The concerns of a jaded gamer.
« on: June 11, 2006, 07:12:52 am »
Like most of you here, im looking forward to Spore.
Problem is, im a jaded gamer, and im worried.

When I saw the little smiley symbols rise off another creature during a video presentation of spore, I thought of the Sims, and when I thought of the Sims, I cringed. Dont get me wrong, I liked the Sims, and the Sims 2 had me hooked for ages. There is one little thing that is now niggling at me as a result though. In the Sims (1 and 2), after the initial wow-factor had stopped blinding you, you could see a lot of the games workings quite easily. Action A results in Stat A going up, whilst Stat B went down. Action B results in Stat B going up, whilst Stat C went down. Thats not such a bad thing, it removed a lot of needless messing around, and let players achieve what they wanted in a pretty direct manner. The problem with this, is that in the longer run, the game seems more shallow than it should. Particularly in the Sims 2 with the inclusion of "woohoo". If any one of my characters felt so inclined, all they had to do, to get someone in bed, was to repeatedly pommel their target with positive social interactions, and then hop into the sack with them. Now, its nice to have any member of the households I make, able to seduce any person they so feel like, be it another player-character or someone I met at the store, but that just doesnt seem right. I dont mean 'right' in a moral sense, I mean 'right' in a game sense. Once you understand the mechanics, there was no game behind it, just keep stabbing the left-mouse-button at social interactions they liked, then by the end of the second day you're likely to have had a roll in the hay with them. Or like when once you've come to terms with how you advance your Sim in their job, the game can devolve into simply a race against the clock to make a mass amount of family friends, prevent yourself from drifting apart with old friends, squeezing in a meal and a few hours sleep, then going back to work again. Whilst still a fun game at heart, once the core of the mechanics become glaringly apparent, all we tend to do is dance around them, and forget its a game, and not a stat-builder. Yes, its our responsibility as gamers to have fun and prevent ourselves from falling into that behaviour, but it seems in our nature. Who has played an RPG of some remote kind, loved it to bits, but then had to stop playing because the game became entirely about "levelling up" and the grind became boring? This tends to happen when the game lets you 'free-fall', and we let it happen, we're like lemmings.

"So Uroboros, what does this have to do with Spore?" I hear you ask?

What happens if social interactions between creatures in the creature stage end up like this? If you want a social species, spam communication. If you want a loner species? Dont. What about the spacefaring stage? Will a single error always end up with the target culture declaring war on your home planet? Or will it just be a choice between a short list of instant responses? Every time we play through the game in the tribal/city/civ stage, will the technology trees be the same? Will each species not only have the same core technology, but will they all appear and behave the same way as well? If I create three completely different species, and grow them to the spacefaring stage in different manners, once I research everything, despite how the shell of my buildings and spaceship appears, will they all behave the same way? Generic beamlaser, generic abduction beam? I wonder just how deep the other customisation goes..
Can we make our abduction beams a "roswell style" white light or a green 'laser tube' like in the video presentations? Or will these things be decided for us on our tech research levels? If so, will this cause us to want to stop advancing our technology when we find something we like the looks of?

Yes, I am a touch paranoid, but just because im paranoid it doesnt mean they ARENT out to get me, y'know ;)
I worry, because Spore is a game that i've always dreamed of. Seriously. That sounds sappy but ever since I was a kid, i've thought about how a game like this would be fun. I've always loved customisation, and have always felt pulled towards games with it in. And yet somehow, every attempt to give us -real- freedom of creation has fallen short somehow. I have my hopes up over spore, but I wonder if this game, with its Maxis roots can pull away from predictable core-systems. I have enjoyed Maxis games, but I will personally cry tears of blood if Spore becomes predictable to the point, that every creature I get streamed from someone else, ends up looking the same (due to 'optimum builds') or having 5 stars in nearly everything (due to predictable growth). As someone else pointed out, just how limited will the use of our land-vehicles be? Once we have researched everything, just how much fun will zipping around in our spacecraft be?

Just for once, just once, i'd like to see a creative game have some real soul, and have long-term appeal. I have faith in this game, but it cant prevent me from worrying. Why do I sound like this is such a tragedy? Because real entertainment is hard to come by, after you have seen and played a thousand clones of every damned game on the shelf. Im likely going to get suckered into buying the 1001 expansion packs that come out for Spore, but if it were to ever exist, the direct multiplayer expansion would be what i'd go for first. Yes, there is no confirmed direct multiplayer, and there appears to be no direct interest in it either, but im not talking about direct wars (after all, we're not all online at the same time). I'd love it if by warping through certain kinds of black-hole, you ended up in a new universe, which is actually an online lobby. What for? Im not sure. Chat. Trading. Pre-determined mini-games like 'creature chess' in a window that pops up, where each piece can a card you've collected. Sporepedia card-games (card battles too), space-ship hockey with black holes as goals and meteors as pucks. Silly things like that. In reality, I dont think I want Spore to be a game, but nothing more than a toy. No "endgame" goals, no predictable linear core-system (outside of the initial play, so we can learn how to do things), but more of a toy, a catalyst to fun through our creativity.

Yeah I know, im gushing. This is result of caffiene and boredom.
So what is my real point? I guess I dont have one. What are your thoughts?

Jaded gamer, over and out.
« Last Edit: June 11, 2006, 07:34:12 am by Uroboros »



Offline Bastardman

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Re: The concerns of a jaded gamer.
« Reply #1 on: June 11, 2006, 08:35:46 am »
Yes, I am a touch paranoid, but just because im paranoid it doesnt mean they ARENT out to get me, y'know ;)
I worry, because Spore is a game that i've always dreamed of. Seriously. That sounds sappy but ever since I was a kid, i've thought about how a game like this would be fun. I've always loved customisation, and have always felt pulled towards games with it in. And yet somehow, every attempt to give us -real- freedom of creation has fallen short somehow. I have my hopes up over spore, but I wonder if this game, with its Maxis roots can pull away from predictable core-systems. I have enjoyed Maxis games, but I will personally cry tears of blood if Spore becomes predictable to the point, that every creature I get streamed from someone else, ends up looking the same (due to 'optimum builds') or having 5 stars in nearly everything (due to predictable growth). As someone else pointed out, just how limited will the use of our land-vehicles be? Once we have researched everything, just how much fun will zipping around in our spacecraft be?
Yess!! I totally agree with you on this point.
In fact, when I saw in the E3 video how the tiered body-part upgrading system worked, a part of me just thought "Oh... ****..."

Because it seemed to me that, at the very least, this system would essentially divide the amount of variety in creature designs by four, since it's likely nearly everyone is going to want to upgrade their feet, eyes, mouths, etc, to the fourth, and most advanced "form" of the one they chose at the beginning of the creature phase.

When I first saw those four columns, I thought "Hell yeah! That's a LOT of customisation right there!" But if 75% of the parts are actually upgraded forms of other parts, that puts a significant damper on the level of customisation, essentially penalising people for sticking with certain parts.

And I have to agree with you on the Sims 2 stagnation point thing, as well. I hope I'm wrong, but I'm kind of expecting it to turn out like that, where beneath the apparent open-endedness lies a very structured system where only a few of the wide range of actions available to a player will ever actually yield a positive result.

But we may be wrong. After all, Will Wright has, for the most part, acknowledged the shortcomings of his previous games, and there's a good chance he'll have thought of this one, too. And besides, the level of creative freedom we already know exists in the game is staggering in itself, and well worth the price tag of the average PC game, IMO.

Offline Daxx

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Re: The concerns of a jaded gamer.
« Reply #2 on: June 11, 2006, 08:39:51 am »
In fact, when I saw in the E3 video how the tiered body-part upgrading system worked, a part of me just thought "Oh... ****..."

Because it seemed to me that, at the very least, this system would essentially divide the amount of variety in creature designs by four, since it's likely nearly everyone is going to want to upgrade their feet, eyes, mouths, etc, to the fourth, and most advanced "form" of the one they chose at the beginning of the creature phase.

When I first saw those four columns, I thought "Hell yeah! That's a LOT of customisation right there!" But if 75% of the parts are actually upgraded forms of other parts, that puts a significant damper on the level of customisation, essentially penalising people for sticking with certain parts.

I also totally agree. I don't know why they'd bother making parts that will shortly become redundant. Perhaps these more "effective" parts have other trade-offs? If there is an optimal body plan/part combination I think I will cry.

Offline Uroboros

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Re: The concerns of a jaded gamer.
« Reply #3 on: June 11, 2006, 08:50:07 am »
I did breathe a sigh of relief when during one of the video presentations (the one with Robin Willaims I think), when he is picking a mouth, you hear them talking to themselves quietly for a moment, and they say something like "the brown ones are better for your creature". I then noticed that some of the mouths were faded slightly blue, or slightly brown, going on memory here. The thing is, they werent lined up with the 'best parts' being in one column or row. This gave me a little hope that whilst there may in fact be optimum parts, they might not always be the same for each creature. The game may in fact watch how your creature is growing, and determine certain parts to be the better ones for you to get. How would it do this? Again, from start to finish on speculation, it could base it upon creature balance, and sort of nudge you and tell you what you are lacking. On another side, perhaps those different shades I saw were merely showing which lean most towards carnivore/omnivore, or perhaps related to price? I really cant tell, but just the mere fact that I didnt see them lined up like "These are the most expensive and effective parts", I felt a little better.

Even then, once we have played through the game once, and get to the point where we can tamper with genetics, we dont have to worry too much about an optimum build to survive with, because we've already survived up to the space age. It makes me wonder, it makes me worry. Still, if someone had the tenacity to insist that a game like Spore can be done, no doubt against all the odds and people saying "thats just too complex" or "you're expecting too much", then I have some faith that Will Wright wont allow his brainchild to be that flawed. He will be limited by modern technology, but surely even with the inevitable (eventual) limits that he will be faced with, there has to be a way to make this thing work as he really intends. Fingers crossed, eh? :)

Offline BioCat

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Re: The concerns of a jaded gamer.
« Reply #4 on: June 11, 2006, 08:55:29 am »
All I can say is that I totally agree. Altough unlike you I find those smiley faces quite amusing and don't take it that hard when they make something a little more simple I do fear of lack of customization. I had almost used every editor of every game out there. I am a freak of creativity and although I understand there are limits I would be very disappointed if there are better parts or better creatures. If you ask: "So what's ideal to you?" I'd say: "The computer should view what I have created and from a limited amount of points decide what my creature does best based on how I made it". That way my creature won't suck only because I chose not to give it eyes etc. I still have to say no matter what spore will rule (even if it is more limited then I wished it would) but if the customization level is indeed very high spore might be the best game of our times.

Offline Daxx

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Re: The concerns of a jaded gamer.
« Reply #5 on: June 11, 2006, 08:56:24 am »
during one of the video presentations (the one with Robin Willaims I think), when he is picking a mouth, you hear them talking to themselves quietly for a moment, and they say something like "the brown ones are better for your creature". I then noticed that some of the mouths were faded slightly blue, or slightly brown, going on memory here. The thing is, they werent lined up with the 'best parts' being in one column or row.

Maybe it's just us in the community are cynical. but I think many people took that to mean that certain parts weren't finished yet. Hyrdo said the same thing when he had a chance to play with the creature editor.

Offline Bastardman

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Re: The concerns of a jaded gamer.
« Reply #6 on: June 11, 2006, 09:10:10 am »
during one of the video presentations (the one with Robin Willaims I think), when he is picking a mouth, you hear them talking to themselves quietly for a moment, and they say something like "the brown ones are better for your creature". I then noticed that some of the mouths were faded slightly blue, or slightly brown, going on memory here. The thing is, they werent lined up with the 'best parts' being in one column or row.

Maybe it's just us in the community are cynical. but I think many people took that to mean that certain parts weren't finished yet. Hyrdo said the same thing when he had a chance to play with the creature editor.
Yeah, I think it's the consensus around here that that was WW's subtle way of discouraging him from using the unfinished parts...

But I now recall it being said somewhere (I think by Will himself) that the game's difficulty will be scaled according to your evolution choices and your skill level. If this is true, and if it's done well, it should at least reduce the whole "optimum builds" thing.

Offline Uroboros

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Re: The concerns of a jaded gamer.
« Reply #7 on: June 11, 2006, 10:03:42 am »
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I still have to say no matter what spore will rule (even if it is more limited then I wished it would) but if the customization level is indeed very high spore might be the best game of our times.
Very true. Even games with glaring flaws can prove entertaining. Ever heard of "Graffiti Kingdom" or "Magic Pengel 2"? I loved that game, and whilst the gameplay is boring for me now, considering the game was a pretty boring platform game, the creation tools in it kept it alive for me for a long while. Some people loved it, some people hated it. Even if Spore proves to have some flaws that really make people groan, it will still be one of the most original games to grace the modern gaming market in a long time, and originality is in pretty short supply these days. It'll rock, but because of what it could be -potentially-, im worried that it wont live up to its full potential. Then again, those are some pretty big shoes to fill.

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But I now recall it being said somewhere (I think by Will himself) that the game's difficulty will be scaled according to your evolution choices and your skill level. If this is true, and if it's done well, it should at least reduce the whole "optimum builds" thing.
Oh aye, I forgot about that. Its supposed to fill out the content of your planet (when you first play) with a balanced ecosystem. Paraphrasing the older GDC video : "You'll never be at the bottom of the food chain but you'll never quite be at the top either". There'll still be a number of creatures there, just so people can say "I made a 5-star everything creature, and called it a Death-sword Ice-flamian", but they probably wont be filtered through to anyone else because of the mass of 5-stars. At least I hope not If on my first game I get stalked by a "PowerVegetaDBZOmegaBlastoid24124" species, im going to facepalm. Actually, having mentioned that, I wonder if there will be any quality-control on the creatures? Y'know, whether the inevitable races of penis-monsters will be filtered out from reaching other peoples computers? To be honest, im not too worried about all this, its just something buzzing around in the back of my head :)

I really dont mind the entire simple idea of weaving social aspects into a species, im just wondering what they're going to do to prevent it from turn it into a simple stat-building freefall. It does sound like we're taking responsibility from ourselves and placing it on the developers, y'know, "We're lemmings, if you dont stop us, we'll grind purposely to high stats and get bored in the process", but it would be nice if we ourselves had to learn a little about our species too. Like :
"I've just made my creature, and got it up onto land for the first time, I wonder how my species will react if I do -this-" or
"My last species were socially open, I wonder if this species is the same, or if trying to join a pack is difficult?" or
"Why is my creatures parents growling and circling me? They arent attacking.. are they trying to drive my child away from the nest/pack?"

Maybe im thinking waaaay too far ahead, but over-familiarity is the pretty big factor in how fast you become bored with something. It would be nice if occasionally a species would have a quirk that would catch you off-guard. I guess what im trying to say really is, its great to have the visual side of the game procedurally generated, but how about some of the inner workings? Isnt there some way of making the inner workings partly intuitive instead of based off a few pre-made blueprints? Sure, this may mean that a species has major trouble surviving because of strange behaviour the computer gave them, but thats nature. Some species die out entirely because of these things! If anything, I would LIKE to have my species wiped out, due to some flawed behaviour, or an inability to survive. It lets me feel like I was actually part of a living world, and I just didnt quite cut it, instead of being in a game that tries to nurse you through it by deliberately removing anything that appears to be a little -too- challenging. Sometimes it would be nice to dominate, sometimes it would be nice to be dominatED. Let us wipe out occasionally if our designs and playstyle arent that effective  ^^

Offline Samog

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Re: The concerns of a jaded gamer.
« Reply #8 on: June 11, 2006, 11:32:56 am »
I also totally agree. I don't know why they'd bother making parts that will shortly become redundant. Perhaps these more "effective" parts have other trade-offs? If there is an optimal body plan/part combination I think I will cry.
Better parts could take more brain power.
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Offline Lualmoba

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Re: The concerns of a jaded gamer.
« Reply #9 on: June 11, 2006, 11:51:30 am »
Since we probably won't be able to buy certain parts for a while in the game, I think they should let us buy any part we want, and make it so that we have to upgrade the brain to have more brainpower and be able to add more parts and just make the parts a little more expensive.

And also, didn't Will say that certain parts would have unexpected abilities?

Offline Feigro

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Re: The concerns of a jaded gamer.
« Reply #10 on: June 11, 2006, 01:15:37 pm »
You sound like half the people that would complain about Oblivion's lvling system. How to achieve the 'highest', 'optimum' character, you'd conterintuitively have to not select and of the skills you're actually going to use/want as your majors, so you don't lvl up, etc, etc. (If you've played TES, you know how it works).

My response to everyone was that it's a problem within themselves. Play the game. Not the mechanic. In Oblivion's case, I don't see where it is written your guy needs to be the best, highest lvl, all maxed skills, etc.

But this does translate differently into Spore, because you're not talking about the being the best. But you are talking about playing the mechanic. "You want to be social - chat all the time, loner - don't" Or you could just play, and as Will suggested, have the game 'assign' the "personality" of your creature to you based on what YOU'RE doing.

As far as I understand it, your creatures personality sliders have no bearing on your game. Why should they? you're in control of your creature. So what... if I'm a peaceful coward... I can't nuke the christ out of my space-faring neighbor? I doubt it. I can do whatever I want. Those "personality sliders" are used to detirmine how your species will interact in Other games. So why should you care?

In any case, my point being anyway, was I played sims to enjoy it. It played Oblivion, for an extensive RP experiance. I know what's going on in the background (ala lvling for Oblivion), but I don't think that means I need to manipulate it . Some people play like that, I guess. But I think you'd do better not worrying about the mechanics of the game and just enjoy the experiance. Just because you can "woohoo" with everyone in the neighborhood doesn't mean you have to or should. Unless of course your character is a philanderer, in which case by all means.

EdIt: Also, who cares about optimal parts. If the coolest looking mouth in respect to my current creature, is the weakest one around, I'm going to stick with it. Why? because it's my creatures mouth. If anything, that brings more realism to my creature, because he isn't optimal. Make you're creature look cool, make it what you want. There's nothing forcing you to choose the 'best' parts. Especially since the eco-system is balanced around you. There will always be something for you to hunt, and always be something you'll probably run from.

« Last Edit: June 11, 2006, 01:22:40 pm by Feigro »
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Offline Uroboros

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Re: The concerns of a jaded gamer.
« Reply #11 on: June 11, 2006, 02:47:28 pm »
Quote
You sound like half the people that would complain about Oblivion's lvling system. How to achieve the 'highest', 'optimum' character, you'd conterintuitively have to not select and of the skills you're actually going to use/want as your majors, so you don't lvl up, etc, etc. (If you've played TES, you know how it works).
Actually, i've played Oblivion and you lost me at this point. If you're trying to say that im the kind of person that complains about Oblivions levelling system, because it doesnt make uber-godly-builds easy to make, you're heavily mistaken there. I primarily play a monk-like guy (for crying out loud, I took athletics as a major), and my second is a shield+mace wielding spellcaster mix-class argonian. I dont buy games to grind skills...

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My response to everyone was that it's a problem within themselves. Play the game. Not the mechanic.
Ah, but you see there is a little flaw in your example. In oblivion, the stats you can increase at a good rate are the ones that you use corresponding skills to. If you level up by doing nothing but repeatedly healing yourself on the spot, your wisdom will likely allow you a +5 for that level, wheras if all you did was jump on the spot for a full level, you would get a +5 for speed. Now, with the way oblivion works, as you level up, so do all the NPC's and missions. If you dont invest enough in intelligence or wisdom, you will have insufficient healing and be crippled by the level of combat you must face on a single healthbar. If you dont invest sufficiently in endurance, your max health isnt sufficient enough to take a few hits and have the chance to react in combat. Herbs and the like arent always around for you to make health potions, and the stores dont have an unlimited supply, and not every character has access to temples for healing and disease removal and such. Therefore, to play the game in the long run, you need to actively use skills you arent interested in just to stand a chance later on. So far, with the NPC's that level up with you, my characters have a cat-in-hells chance of survival in missions that would are supposed to be easy/average difficulty. The game PUNISHES you for not interpretting its mechanics ahead of time, and REWARDS you for grinding skills. As much as i'd just love to play the game, it feels like im levelling up until I find a point where I can play the game :P

I'll quit babbling about it, but seriously, thats a bad example to be using! :)

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But this does translate differently into Spore, because you're not talking about the being the best. But you are talking about playing the mechanic. "You want to be social - chat all the time, loner - don't" Or you could just play, and as Will suggested, have the game 'assign' the "personality" of your creature to you based on what YOU'RE doing.

As far as I understand it, your creatures personality sliders have no bearing on your game. Why should they? you're in control of your creature. So what... if I'm a peaceful coward... I can't nuke the christ out of my space-faring neighbor? I doubt it. I can do whatever I want. Those "personality sliders" are used to detirmine how your species will interact in Other games. So why should you care?
Why should I care? Because sometimes to be able to do what I want to do, I have to achieve pre-requisites, pre-requisites that can only be gained by repeating simple, transparent tasks. Before you say, I do know what patience is, yes. But lets think about this for a moment. How many times can you walk along the same forest path in Oblivion before the awe of the forest loses its beautifiul edge? How long can you follow the main storyline or the side-quests in Oblivion before you begin to feel detached from it? When I played Oblivion, at first, it hit me. It looked great, it sounded great, and it was atmospheric, but I wasnt really there. From the very start, the plot didnt suck me in, im a jaded gamer. Try as I might, I just couldnt take it for what it was, the storyline just sounded too much like so many others. So, with that one character, I decided to go my own way and forsake the main story as we are allowed to do. At first, it was an experience, it was fun, and to an extent, I owned my character. Then after the first few quests, and after I plowwed through my first deep dungeon, something snapped, as it does with most gamers. It wasnt about the experience OF the game, it was about the experience you earned in the game SYSTEM. Why does this happen? It happens because the experience of the game became less appealing than the idea of levelling up. When the rewards of simply playing through an experience arent enough, you slowly get bored, so the next natural step is to think : "This is starting to get pretty samey, even if the graphics are still cool, I think i'll try to level up and see if its more fun with my next skill/level of skill/better stats".

Do you know what happened when developers learned this could work to their advantage? Games like Diablo 2 and Dungeon Siege came out. They're what I like to call "greed games", where after a while, the only reason for playing is to level up just to see the next power, or to earn the prerequisites to use something you found. You're right, this doesnt apply to Spore like that, but I say that all games have a risk of turning out like that. How does this relate to my concerns for Spore? I DONT WANT SPORE TO END UP LIKE THAT! Thats why when I saw those little smilies rising up, after communicating with another of your own species, I got a shiver, a bad shiver. I could maybe even call it a doomsday omen. One of the simplest ways to prevent a game from becoming boring, is to actively prevent a person from 100% grinding, willfully or not. Like perhaps they could make it so that if you try to communicate with someone of your own species too frequently, you end up irritating them, and they ignore you a little more (especially if your species has a bad temper or is grouchy).

Jaded gamer complex in a nutshell is : "This is my first time playing, and it feels like i've been here 1000 times before."
When I saw those little smiley faces, I imagined a hundred games worldwide doing that at the same time, for the first time, and instantly (subconciously) thinking : "If I want more social stat, I just click more". Its no big deal, but when things are made too simple and too easy, people naturally gravitate away from the experience and towards the stats faster than usual. Im not saying this is a fault of Will Wright or Spore or anything like that, I guess im just saying it would be nice if for once, simple acts like click-grinding barely do anything for you at all, and forces the player to do other things if they want to achieve an effect. Gather some members of your species and try to take down a creature many times the size of you, or make a kill on your own and drag it back to the pack for them to eat too, find a weird-looking stone and roll it with your head over to another creature and I dunno, maybe play a game with no rules, like creatures do when they socialise... not just... "click!" -> "stat!".

Quote
In any case, my point being anyway, was I played sims to enjoy it. It played Oblivion, for an extensive RP experiance. I know what's going on in the background (ala lvling for Oblivion), but I don't think that means I need to manipulate it . Some people play like that, I guess. But I think you'd do better not worrying about the mechanics of the game and just enjoy the experiance. Just because you can "woohoo" with everyone in the neighborhood doesn't mean you have to or should. Unless of course your character is a philanderer, in which case by all means.
Oh no no no, I didnt mean it like that. Its not the fact that I can woohoo everyone in sight, its the fact that if I wanted to do so, spamming conversation is all it would take to get there, and conversation spam is something that you can do with no real penalty or prerequisite. In my neighborhood, if my character was set to be a complete prude, and I let someone else play their character in another house, they could bed me in 2 days absolute max, regardless of nearly every other factor. If you give away rewards too easy and too fast, or center a game too much on the grind or those rewards (diablo 2 / dungeon siege), then the game is aging faster than it should, and the player might even be sacrificing some of the experience to follow the unintentional path of grinding they have been sent down, be it consciously or not.

Do I know how to prevent this? No way. But I can safely say that giving stats for a simple no-nonesense click is not going to make it any better, though ;)

Quote
EdIt: Also, who cares about optimal parts. If the coolest looking mouth in respect to my current creature, is the weakest one around, I'm going to stick with it. Why? because it's my creatures mouth. If anything, that brings more realism to my creature, because he isn't optimal. Make you're creature look cool, make it what you want. There's nothing forcing you to choose the 'best' parts. Especially since the eco-system is balanced around you. There will always be something for you to hunt, and always be something you'll probably run from.
Im definately the same way in that regard, and some of the creatures I intend to make will probably be really hard to keep alive due to their designs, but I just want to see how they move, live, and ultimately grow (if they survive).


---Edited to take out some of the rambling
« Last Edit: June 11, 2006, 02:55:23 pm by Uroboros »

Offline Chickenman297

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Re: The concerns of a jaded gamer.
« Reply #12 on: June 11, 2006, 04:18:29 pm »
Just a point on making the most optimal creature using the best parts... Remember you are designing a creature over a number of generations.  I'm certain the polination system will not necessarly download the final version of your creature for use in another players game.  It is very likely that it will download one of the intermediate generations.
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Offline Uroboros

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Re: The concerns of a jaded gamer.
« Reply #13 on: June 11, 2006, 04:38:16 pm »
Just a point on making the most optimal creature using the best parts... Remember you are designing a creature over a number of generations. I'm certain the polination system will not necessarly download the final version of your creature for use in another players game. It is very likely that it will download one of the intermediate generations.
Actually that is a good point, I wonder when the game sends copies of your content up to the content servers, and how often? Each generation? *chinscratch*
I guess with how well compressed these creatures are, thats easily possible. I suppose the creatures that we'll be able to browse through to purposefully download will be the final-generation ones though.

Offline Inyssius Grey

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Re: The concerns of a jaded gamer.
« Reply #14 on: June 11, 2006, 05:40:42 pm »
Yess!! I totally agree with you on this point.
In fact, when I saw in the E3 video how the tiered body-part upgrading system worked, a part of me just thought "Oh... ****..."

Because it seemed to me that, at the very least, this system would essentially divide the amount of variety in creature designs by four, since it's likely nearly everyone is going to want to upgrade their feet, eyes, mouths, etc, to the fourth, and most advanced "form" of the one they chose at the beginning of the creature phase.

When I first saw those four columns, I thought "Hell yeah! That's a LOT of customisation right there!" But if 75% of the parts are actually upgraded forms of other parts, that puts a significant damper on the level of customisation, essentially penalising people for sticking with certain parts.
That's exactly what I was thinking. I really hope that the explanation we were given was vastly oversimplified.

Also, this:
Quote from: Uroboros
Gather some members of your species and try to take down a creature many times the size of you, or make a kill on your own and drag it back to the pack for them to eat too, find a weird-looking stone and roll it with your head over to another creature and I dunno, maybe play a game with no rules, like creatures do when they socialise... not just... "click!" -> "stat!".
is, in my opinion, an incredibly good idea as to how socializing should work.