The 10 most common game design mistakes

GamesRadar writes:

"Making games is hard. Making fun of them isn't. It's really, really easy, actually. Of course, we wouldn't be so critical if we didn't love them so damn much (and if we weren't, you know, critics). We think games are just the bee's knees, and that's why we get so pissed about all the stupid crap they do.

We can forgive the small things, but when they're as painful and inexplicably chronic as the 10 below, we've got to act in the only way we know how – by making a list. It wasn't hard to think of 10 things game developers constantly irk us with – we could have geeked on and on about 20, even 30, but we aren't trying to nitpick…well, yes we are…but we aren't trying to rub hydrochloric acid into gaping chest wounds. We're being constructive!"

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killa916063492d ago

Fallout 3 had too many things to be perfect,but not the AI.....

Christopher3491d ago

There are a lot more problems made by developers than those.

#10 - Incomprehensible puzzles are fairly subjective and oftentimes not as incomprehensible as they seem. Traveling through vents, fine, you don't like it, but it's not something I wouldn't look for in the game. And, your example of click-n-find games kind of is the whole purpose of the game, finding the most obscure item in the place where you'd least think to look.

#9 - Clueless AI can vary from game to game. Yeah, that AI in Fallout 3 may seem clueless, but it also helps you so you don't all-together shoot your chances of accomplishing certain tasks. They're not there to make it a like it should, it's there to ensure that even if you make mistakes you can still accomplish a task given. Don't always think that stupid AI is just because they couldn't throw smart AI at you. Trust me, no one wants to play a game with smart AI, because that means the computer will always know what you're doing and will always know where to hit you the best.

#8 - Not all of them are bad. QTEs can be a way to test your hand-eye reflexes and to jostle your mind away from the typical actions. I will admit that they tend to be overly repetitive and useless, such as in Conan where you use the same QTEs over and over to open doors and turn levers.

#7 - Story injection isn't up to you to decide when and where it isn't needed. It's the developer's story. It's your job to decide if you like the story and how it plays out. This isn't a mistake, it's an element of common acceptance. Some of the best games have horrible timing with injecting story elements into the game, but in the end it still works out. Also, find it kind of annoying when people attempt to decide for everyone how much story is good enough. Not everyone likes playing a game just to kill others without regard to any story elements. Adding a bit of it in doesn't remove the ability to kill others, but can make some players enjoy the time they have in game.

#6 - This one I do agree with. Max Payne's dream sequences are a good example of this.

#5 - I hate games based on lengthy saves and some games do really make it hard to play, but some games also are based on limiting saves for a reason.

#4 - Over-complication is oftentimes intended in order to cater to the niche market that desires that sort of gameplay. This is sometimes ill-used, but most games that are overly complicated are playing towards their target audience. Tons of JRPGs are like this.

#3 - Arbitrary limitations in RPGs are put in place to preserve the storyline. It's the purpose of playing the game in the first place, to play a character through the storyline. Arbitrary limitations also set a system of balance within the system and prevent any exploitation of the storyline, especially if that story is going to continue into a planned sequel... I would say to show a bit of respect for the good storytelling in games, even if you feel like you should be able to play outside of their lines more often than they allow.

#2 - I typically agree with this, though many games involve this as part of the memorization element of the game.

#1 - I will agree that cut scenes should be capable of being skipped if you've already seen them and are re-watching them due to a death, but I completely support game developers forcing the story upon the players. These are stories of their design here, the ones with the long, incapable of being skipped cut scenes are intended to be enjoyed for their story. If you bought the game for other reasons, you now know better.