Today’s post looks at a rarely used form of difficulty design in the form of sculptable difficulty. We have seen games with the option to alter the difficulty during play, but sculptable difficulty takes things further and allows the player to create the challenge they’re looking for.
Video game development is always about going big with your ideas. Unfortunately, there comes a point when you can go too far with an idea and can create more harm than good. For today’s post, we’re going to talk about the trap of over-designing your game as a game developer.
Skyshine’s Bedlam which was released earlier in September is both the latest game to follow in the challenging rogue-like footsteps of FTL, and the latest game to be marked down by fans because of it. Creating intentionally difficult games is tough (no pun intended) and requires a careful hand when it comes to challenge. People like a challenge, but the key factor has to do with the player’s control over the situation.
One area of UI design that I haven’t talked about yet would be the somewhat recent development of dual or multi screen UIs. At first, having multiple screens set up to run a game seemed like something for people with money to burn but the functionality is definitely there. Over the years we’ve seen this style transition off the PC thanks to Nintendo with the Wii-U and 3Ds and some of the best games for either platform make use of multi screen UIs.
Having the additional real estate to create your UI in may sound like it would be easier to design compared to a single screen UI; however with more screens come new challenges for the UI designer to take into consideration.