It seems like every time a challenging game is released the argument over difficulty starts again. This time it was Cuphead, and developers arguing regarding whether high difficulty is a feature or limiting. Extreme difficulty by itself is never good, but difficulty does have an important purpose.
Today’s Critical Thought looks at difficulty scaling in game design. I talked about how you can make meaningful difficulty settings, and why very easy and very hard modes aren’t as simple to design.
For today’s Critical Thought, we’re looking at Subjective Difficulty in game design. Subjective Difficulty is the concept of designing levels that accommodate multiple skill levels at the same time. It’s very hard to pull off and not every game can do it, but it can lead to some amazing game designs.