On Game Difficulty Options and Growing Up

The gaming community frequently argues over difficulty options in games and their purpose—but it doesn’t have to be this way.

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Infenes509d ago

Writers sums it up perfectly; "Forgive me if I sound annoyed or blunt, but what business is it of anybody’s how someone else plays a single-player game?".

While there are games that are DESIGNED to be the way they are (Dark Souls, etc.) other titles should embrace their difficulty options. Moreover, people just mind. their. business.

sourOG509d ago

“ There’s been much to-do over game difficulty options in the last few weeks, mostly on Twitter”

Nobody cares lol. Twitter the brainfart bubble doesn’t count. Have you ever met someone in real life that would give you a hard time for beating a game on easy? I haven’t.

neutralgamer1992509d ago (Edited 509d ago )

I think moving forward most games especially single player games that you can play offline should give you more accessibility options not just straight up difficulty options but other accessibility options. Some people have difficulty with puzzles so games make it easy some people have difficulty with combat you can make that easy the last tomb raider game offered really deep accessibility options when it came to difficulty.

Of course there should still be games like souls where you have a default difficulty but most of the games should offer a story mode, easy, normal, hard and a very hard and call it different names

I think when most of us were younger and had more time and did not have the support families and have work related priorities we could play on any difficulty that's why back in the day a lot of games were very hard

It's time to have this mature conversation without one side feeling like they're getting the short end of the stick. I Really don't understand this about some gamers who are against accessibility when it comes to single player games how does my experience playing on story mode affects yours playing on hard I just don't understand that

508d ago
508d ago Replies(3)
nitus10508d ago

In the Souls/Bourne games you can make the game easier if you pick up an NPC (sometimes two or more) or if you are online, one or more real world players. Of course if you really wish to have a challenge you can play by yourself.

Some exceptional players have even played with pathetic armour and weapons thereby really upping the challenge. Getting invaded by these people is a sure death sentence.

Games like "Oblivion", "Skyrim", "The Witcher 3" and "Horizon Zero Dawn" (there are plenty more) allow the player to select the difficulty of the game. If/when you finish HZD and restart on new game+ you will find that once you select a difficulty you can't change it. Of course if you select NG+ for HZD at the hardest difficulty you can get much more powerful weapons.

oldenjon508d ago (Edited 508d ago )

That so many gamers seem to get behind this agenda to have every game be the same is bit scary honestly. The more accessibility options we get, the more people feel entitled to them and act like it should be mandated. I like not having the option to toggle an easy slider when some games get tough. It's made me a better gamer, and helped me to practice perseverance in other areas of my life.
With the weak narratives that so many games offer, what reward is there for sliding that toggle at the end of a game? What is the difference between that and watching the ending on YouTube? Maybe growing up just means you don't have time to play the games you want to play full stop. I don't think it should mean that you get to petition, demand and cry until you get game features that better suit your lifestyle. And can we please stop pretending that accessibility features aren't primarily incentivized by sales, and just let the developers make the kinds of games they want to make (and sell) in peace?

Darkwatchman508d ago

If you need the inability to switch difficult mid-game from doing it, then that means you don’t really have perseverance? You say being forced or play on so and so taught you perseverance but yet having a toggle go knock the game down on a whim somehow makes your experience different? If you’re at all tempted just because the option is there, then you don’t really have the perseverance you claim to have so the entire conceit behind your argument is flawed.

oldenjon508d ago (Edited 508d ago )

Well the fact of no difficulty options in the games I'm talking about makes your argument nonsense. I prefer to have the definitive experience of a game when possible, and difficulty options lead to confusion over what that is exactly.

oldenjon508d ago (Edited 508d ago )

I mean, you understand that right? It requires you to imagine the game with accessibility features which is entirely moot. My point was that I learned to approach the game differently than I might have w/ those features in place, and that experience itself is one that can occur by design and provide satisfaction. The argument makes no sense whatsoever.

CYALTR508d ago

Most games have a recommended or normal difficulty setting (the one's that have one) so theoretically the normal setting would be the one that developers have in mind when developing the game. It definitely should be at the developers discretion, as it is their vision.

I can't really disagree with your points, but I still don't think your argument is valid as to if it is a good idea or not. Personally I like the idea of games being made available to the most number of people possible. It is good for the business as developers get paid and more games are made. It may even be good for the kind of, more difficult games you prefer, as it allows for more specialized marketing. The practice as a whole, I feel, is good for gaming.

oldenjon508d ago (Edited 508d ago )

My idea is only that diversity of experiences should be something the industry strives for. The argument is to place restrictions on that idea. There is no one size fits all answer to accessibility. It can and will impact development and appeal of existing and future franchises in unforseen ways (I made an illustration of this idea in a comment a few posts down). An abundance of games that feature the kinds of options we're discussing should be good enough. Let sleeping dogs lie.

And can we please dispel the notion that more sales is unambiguously a good thing, and stop doubting the conscientiousness of developers like FROM. They have to make a lot of tough decisions in the process of developing games that appeal to their fan base and also have sufficient market appeal. I'm sure they weight the pros and cons of adding more accessibility features every time they release a new game, and are completely aware that some group is excluded and therefore sales lost. These are products, games are not a right, and part of growing up is also coming to terms with the fact we can't make everyone happy.

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