#4 is the next game from this studio that is all about challenging puzzle games where there is never one perfect solution.
Recently, I tried and ultimately found myself not enjoying the open-ended game Satellite Reign. One of the things that bothered me about the design and was a bullet point the developers were pushing, was saying that the mechanics would lead to “Emergent gameplay,” that would let the players shape the situations around them. Having given up playing the game, I did not find it to be emergent at all and I wanted to explore this concept further, because this is one of those dream game design concepts that designers can (and have) chase.
Today’s post returns to an important point I’ve talked about before — Feedback and how it relates to learning and not just in video games. In the past I’ve talked about the differences in abstracted systems like strategy games vs. real time systems like in fighting games. But a recent conversation that will be a podcast soon got me thinking about how it’s not the type of mechanic, but the time it takes for the feedback that impacts learning.
On my podcast with Zach Barth discussing his latest game Infinifactory, we got on the topic of the stigma against early access and how a lack of standardization and varying quality has hurt the consumer confidence in it. He talked about how he was well aware of that when he decided to release Infinifactory on the early access platform. However during our chat we talked about what could be a possible alternative and one that Valve should consider.