Should every new game be released with an infy lives option?

Propose new game/software design concepts or new game/software ideas. They can be as whimsical as you like, just be careful you don't ask someone to make it for you...
hikoki
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Re: Should every new game be released with an infy lives option?

Post by hikoki » Tue Dec 12, 2017 10:58 am

Infy lives may force the designer to make smarter and harder level designs which engage the player. I for one tend to make fewer snapshots so it may help to challenge the playe as there's room for more difficulty with lots of chances to improve. The designer is freed to think out more complex levels without worrying about getting the player tired or frustrated. Some classic games used to be be really hard for durability and lack of testing. Infy live on modern games MAY be a good excuse to make good old challenging games while being approachable, that is, more work for the designer even though the game will last few days in the hands of the player.
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Re: Should every new game be released with an infy lives option?

Post by 1024MAK » Tue Dec 12, 2017 12:16 pm

R-Tape wrote:
Sun Nov 19, 2017 4:07 pm
We have less time for Speccy games these days, and a google times more distractions. Most people play in an emulator with snapshots, hacking is easier than ever, and POKEs usually appear within a few days of release.

Is it even worth trying to design a game around a limited number of lives anymore? Should game authors acknowledge this and include an infy lives option on release? Or is it yielding too much to the leg jiggling ADHD of the lazy (or modern) player?

I suppose the hackers would get bored...
So, I've read through the whole thread (without needing infinite lives :mrgreen: ), and no one has mentioned that a lot of early ZX Spectrum games were inspired by arcade games machines. Arcade games of course had to have a system to get you addicted, but also to "kill you off" so that you would put another coin in the slot to try again... or to tempt another player (spectator) to have (another) go...

That was Sir Clive's big failing, he never put a coin mechanism on the ZX Spectrum Image

So to sum up
  1. Games should be playable enough to get a player interested, to get them addicted.
  2. But, just as there should be rewards in the game, there should also be some kind of stick (punishment), to as to encourage the player to be more careful in his/her moves. Loosing a life (or energy level or similar) does this.
  3. And of course, there has to be a balance, as it is the overall balance in the difficulty of the game that makes it a good game. Too easy and players will feel let down. Too hard, and many players will give up, and moan that it was too hard...
  4. And of course, without the coin mechanism, there are many other ways to "punish" the player (metal Joystick that gets energised to 1000V maybe? - only joking!) within a game. Or to reward the player. But it is up to the game designer to decide ;)
So to answer the original question, NO games should not normally be released with an infinite lives option.
And games should be developed that are playable on a real ZX Spectrum.

Mark
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hikoki
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Re: Should every new game be released with an infy lives option?

Post by hikoki » Tue Dec 12, 2017 2:05 pm

A few examples.
Doodlebug:
good stuff but too short!!
Dead Flesh Boy :
makes me play despite being killed many times (the free version has some bugs and too easy levels like they were designed in a rush.. so the cassette version may be worth a try)
Janosik:
Hard Dinamic-like great game. It could have been better (even harder, with randomness elements,etc) with infinite lives.
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Re: Should every new game be released with an infy lives option?

Post by Nomad » Sun Dec 31, 2017 7:46 am

Ralf wrote:
Mon Nov 20, 2017 10:42 am
<snip>
The problem is that while making a game you play and test it hundreds of times so you learn it ,you memorize it. It becomes easy for you and you are no longer able to take point of view of a guy who sees it for the first time.
So many of the microcomputer games of the 80s fall into this trap and become unintentionally cryptic enigmas, Spectrum and Commodore were ok because the pool of players was large enough you would run into someone who knew how to beat the stage/level. But pity the Dragon/Atari/BBC micro user in the UK lol.. No dice, you could have spent 10 pounds or more on a game that you were totally stuck on and there was no way you could realistically progress.

With a text adventure; the well written ones it was ok because you could work through it. But for the action games there was no way you would get through some of these games unless you knew the trick(s). There were many times I put down a title and thought 'it must have made sense to him at the time, but I can't understand why a human being would do it that way...' lol.

It's really true what they say 'You can be to close to something to see that there is a problem'.
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Re: Should every new game be released with an infy lives option?

Post by ANDREWRYALS » Sat Mar 24, 2018 5:20 pm

Fashionably late as usual. I used to hack everything in site and I used to look for code levels, passwords, solutions to text adventures. I even found a few spikey messages left for me (thanks guys). Now I just prefer to hack for a little nostalgia and I only poke things which I really enjoy playing or need hacking for historical reasons.
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Re: Should every new game be released with an infy lives option?

Post by Lady Eklipse » Sat Mar 24, 2018 11:22 pm

Is this a rhetorical question? Of course we should have infinite lives and (if relevant) continues!
The concept of lives itself is archaic. I like old games, but I like the good aspects of old games, not replaying the same level, or worse - screen, for infinite hours. I choose infinite lives instead.
Life is hard enough to handle. Why should enternainment also be hard?
When I played ZX Spectrum and (later) console games, I used to literally dream about a possibility to have infinite lives, savestates or something like that, which would let me actually play the game, not just exercise in failure. Instead, I always liked to explore the game, to see the world of the game, to see what's on the next screen, on the next level etc. Lives are just a hinderance.
Thankfully, not only we have save states, I'm also able to play hacked games on original hardware, which is awesome!
That was actually my philosophy behind creating ZX Pokemaster. I want even access to cheat codes be easy. Life should be easy and so should be games.
If you are a developer, please make infinite lives at least an option.
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ZX Pokemaster - cheat management and file sorting tool for ZX Spectrum

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Re: Should every new game be released with an infy lives option?

Post by Nomad » Sun Mar 25, 2018 1:58 am

There is a lot to be said for the philosophy of the games, where a user would be given the choice of 'stay in a sea of fail or get good.. your choice bro.' :lol: Once you get past the cryptic games or ones with sparse player bases. Its the mindset that is different in players now compared to before. Sure you always had people sharing pokes but the challenge aspect was a big part of why people played the games. To be able to say you beat a title.

When someone completes a game on inf lives thats more a person resigning themselves to not being good enough to complete the game as intended.

What does it say about us today - that we don't have the skills or patients that people back in the 1980s did (probably), that we expect everything to be made easy (again probably). Nobody wants to be 'triggered' by a task that might have a failure state (probably). Is it so hard to accept that perhaps some tasks are beyond us without a significant amount of effort? What does that say about modern society? :lol:

Its hard to say as we have accepted enforcement of the lowest common denominator as a norm rather than the exception. Perhaps content was denied to plebs to make it all the more sweet for the ones that spent the time to master the game? If you let everyone see the content that was predicated on skill before then it removes the achievement from those who go their by regular means.

Any snowflake, with no time mastering the game can just lay bare the content for everyone to see for the piss poor youtube videos, blog posts in a cynical attempt to get Patrion welfare or ad revenue. Lost in a sea of simplistic, bottom of the barrel gameplay - hundreds of flappy birds clones, one screen puzzles or 5 nights at fredies creative abominations. It would seem that when your average player wants everything handed to them with no effort what is the point in developing games with deep elements or challenging game play? You might as well just focus on shovel ware that is a thin veil to promote whatever hipster pseudo science is the flavor of the day and get on that virtue signalling hype train to indie success. :lol:

But one thing that has not really been considered is everyone (well most of us) are that much older and have more things to take up our time than we did back in the day. So perhaps there is not the free time necessary or the motivation to get good.. Could that have been a major reason for games having an expectation of a cakewalk option? If you pay for content do you have a right to see it all as part of your purchase? :lol: They are hard questions I am not sure to be honest. It's not like a whole new generation of kids is waiting to pick up these titles and use them in the same way that kids back in the 80s did. Hmm...
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Re: Should every new game be released with an infy lives option?

Post by Ast A. Moore » Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:58 am

Nomad wrote:
Sun Mar 25, 2018 1:58 am
There is a lot to be said for the philosophy of the games . . . Hmm...
Agreed. Or, to condense the above to a more succinct and technical term: grow a pair. :)
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Every man should plant a tree, build a house, and write a ZX Spectrum game.

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and zasm Z80 Assembler syntax highlighter.

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Re: Should every new game be released with an infy lives option?

Post by Ralf » Sun Mar 25, 2018 10:42 am

Is this a rhetorical question? Of course we should have infinite lives and (if relevant) continues!
Well, the world has certainly changed. Games become mouch easier than they used to be in the 80s.

How many gamers actually completed Knight Lore or Manic Miner? 10%? 1%? That's the numbers I believe. And today everybody is expected to be able to complete his purchased game and see the ending.

But infinite lives still may be a fun killer, I believe. The game should be easy enough to be possible to complete but you still should be able to lose if you are totally careless.

A game is a game. And a part of a game is a challenge ;)
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