Submitted by shanesgc 1159d ago | opinion piece

Difficulty in Gaming – Is it a Selling Point or Not?

theBitFix writes: Quick, I want you to name the hardest games released in recent memory. What comes to mind? If you’re like me the first titles that pop into your head would be games like Demon’s Souls, Devil May Cry 3, Ninja Gaiden and maybe even the recent downloadable title Spelunky. Now there’s one thing that I believe all these games have in common, difficulty as a selling point. (Culture, Demon Souls, Devil May Cry 3, PS3, Spelunky, Wii, Xbox 360)

pixelsword  +   1159d ago
To be honest, I've seen one trend:

It depends on the amount of button pushing for the amount of time you have to do the pushing.
brish  +   1159d ago
Q. Difficulty in Gaming – Is it a Selling Point or Not?
A. It depends on the gamer. Some gamers want difficulty, some do not.
knowyourstuff  +   1158d ago
All you need to do is look at the sales figures of Demons Souls and Dark Souls.
If you can't see where I'm going with this - they both undersold, largely because of the bad game design that led them to being so difficult in the first place.
This, herein, is the difference between challenging and frustrating. God of War is challenging. Demons Souls, Dark Souls, Ninja Gaiden, and Devil May Cry 3 are all just stupidly frustrating with horrible game design.
pixelsword  +   1158d ago
I don't know if they undersold, but they said that Demon's Souls was the company's all-time best seller.
brish  +   1158d ago
"... they both undersold, largely because of the bad game design that led them to being so difficult in the first place."
- knowyourstuff

They were designed to be difficult. That's not a "bad game design" it's a major selling point for gamers that want challenging games. Like I said, some gamers want easy games and some want challenging games. Obviously, the souls games aren't for you.

I think Demon's Souls, and Dark Souls are two of the best games this generation.
Orokana  +   1158d ago
Knowyourstuff -

What exactly was badly designed about Dark Souls?
I never encountered a fight or a situation where I died because the game messed up. It was only ever when I made a mistake that I died.

I.e Good game design.
prototypeknuckles  +   1159d ago
i think it is because lets think about this what was the first thing people thought of when they thought of demon/dark souls, oh man this game is tough i i gotta pick this up, same thing can be said for ninja gaiden, and the original devil may crys.
IWentBrokeForGaming  +   1159d ago
if it is a hardcore title, it should be played as such!

the harder a game is, the harder it is to instantly beat... thus adding longevity to it!
CrimsonessCross  +   1159d ago
Sounds like Diablo 3 logic to me. Not the greatest solution in the world...try again, please.
djdosd   1159d ago | Spam
Ducky  +   1159d ago
Depends on what's causing the difficulty.
Some games are difficult because there is genuine difficulty which you can overcome with practice... other games are difficult because they have broken mechanics (like a camera that won't point in the right direction)

Personally, I like it when a game gives options. MGS and DeusEx are two that come to mind off the top of my head; you can play it easy, or make it harder by setting arbitrary limits like not using any weapons, or not killing anyone.
#5 (Edited 1159d ago ) | Agree(2) | Disagree(0) | Report | Reply
helghast102  +   1159d ago
Depends on the kind of difficulty.

Souls style difficulty is great, I wouldn't mind seeing EVERY game have that.

Bethesda style "difficulty" however, can kill itself with a rusty fork

n: I don't think Souls games are actually hard, but they're difficult enough that you can't just mindlessly breeze through like most other games
Xperia_ion  +   1158d ago
God Hand is the most difficult game ever made and I love it. You think you're a badass gamer ? go up to Die lvl on the easiest difficulty. The best thing about that games difficulty is that it's FAIR!!!
MeatAbstract  +   1158d ago
As games have evolved so has the audience.

Way back when gaming was methodical and thanks to no saves, you either got good or you got nowhere.

I'd say say these days, there is an audience for it but not as big as it was. I remember when Demon's Souls was released and many, many gamers and reviewers were complaining about the difficultly. I believe many said "Gaming is about fun, not being frustrated" I know this doesn't apply to all, but you can guarantee most of who said that probably starting playing games once gaming had stepped into 3D and became more accessible and less frustrating.

Needless to say, gaming has become less about the fun of overcoming a challenge and more the fun of feeling like a bad ass.

Overall, it's not wise to create a game on the scale of some of the big AAA titles and make it a insanely tough game, because those who often purchase mainstream games aren't looking to feel frustrated, they want to relax and have fun. It's more a niche thing now.
StrawberryDiesel420  +   1158d ago
Demon's Souls and Dark Souls are hard intially, but once the gamer is trained to understand the gameplay by many many deaths, they are rewarded with an experience that just isn't found in other games. When everything clicks in Dark Souls and Demon's Souls it truly feels amazing, it's different that just playing a game with high difficulty.
3-4-5  +   1158d ago
I would ALWAYS rather have a game be a bit too easy than too hard/ difficult.

I'm trying to avoid frustration while playing games. I don't like stupidly easy games, but I don't really want to even think about throwing my controller.

Difficulty is overrated. Fun is fun. Good is good. Difficult is almost always annoying. A challenge needs to be present but if I have to replay something over and over to beat it that is probably a design flaw and should have been taken care of.

I've never understand the reasoning of making a game extremely difficult. It doesn't make me feel any more accomplished, it just makes me never want to play that game ever again.

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