links for 2010-08-06

  • "After all, if the essence of so many games’ periodic challenge-grind-reward structure can be boiled down into mere seconds – and Half-Minute Hero shows that it can – the uncomfortable question is unavoidable: what exactly are most games doing to justify their enormously greater length?"
    (tags: gamedesign)
  • Provoking thoughts about game length and why we play… "Obviously, the real reason we play games is for gameplay. The best games present some innovative, compelling new interaction that you haven’t already experienced and is worthy of your precious time. How long does it take before you’ve explored the mechanic pretty fully, tried it in different scenarios, met your personal goals and are feeling satisfied? A few hours? So what are the remaining six or more hours for?"
  • "And so the only consequences that really matter, when you say 'real choices' and 'real consequences' — which everybody says now — the only definition of 'real', which is the important word, is something that effects the player's ability to do something in the game."

links for 2010-08-02

links for 2010-07-29

links for 2010-07-08

links for 2010-06-15

links for 2010-05-26

links for 2010-05-19

links for 2010-05-18

links for 2010-05-12

  • The first couple paragraphs caused me to reflect on the term "gamer," coming to the conclusion that as we all become gamers, the better term might be "player." People who listen to music are listeners, not music-ers. People who read books are readers, not bookers. And so people who play games become players, not gamers. It seems to me that "player" describes someone who is participating in an activity not a marketing demographic (which I think "gamer" very much is).

links for 2010-05-07

  • Well, I've never had the urge to play Viva Piñata before… but now I kinda do: "The sudden and unexpected death of one of your animals – a crocodile perhaps, who you've tamed, named Gucci and lovingly adorned with a gold tooth and eye patch – evokes an outpouring of genuine sadness."
  • A shooter in which shooting is meaningful (also, it's about deer hunting): "I pointed my rifle at her head, but she was still looking at me. Unnerved, I gave it up and circled around behind her, but she craned her neck to watch me. Once I was out of her sight, I aimed the rifle again. Before I could fire, she placed her head down on the dirt and drifted off. I had not even managed to fulfill my responsibility to dispatch her mercifully. She had died of the terrible wound I had inflicted on her hip."