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Obvious options/features that devs lazily leave out of games for no reason

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On that subject though I'd like for a game to have some sort of calibration. 

 

Games that offer you multiple difficulties, eg. really easy, quite easy, easy, normal, medium normal, hard, harder, extra hard. When you have no idea what mechanics each one will actually change, by what degree or whether the change will only affect the last third of the game how are you supposed to pick if you know you're not about to play the game three times over. 

 

Baking it into the tutorial could be good. An actual test... Have any games done that? 

 

I kinda hate having the option though. Partly because I don't want to short change myself but I also want to actually get through the game. 

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Titanfall 2 had a test in the tutorial, I believe.

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Games where you click through the intros for the umpteenth time to continue playing, but the default cursor position is "new game" :angry:

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Not so much games, or lazy devs, but in a similar vain I think.

 

Controller licencing on expensive and large controllers. 

 

For example, I want to play Forza, and I want to play GT so I already need 2 consoles, the console manufacturers have already made their money from that, and the games, and I don't think either of them even make controllers..

Now I need a Logitech G29 AND a Logitech G920, and I have to mess around swapping the unit on my stand, or buying 2 stands, and storing these 2 bulky units, or I have to buy some hub made by another company that might or might not be compatible with the 3rd pedal, or force feedback, or shift lights.

 

I get why they do it for regular controllers, but for wheels, I can't see it as anything other than loosing sales as someone with a wheel that works on multiple consoles is surely more likely to buy racing games for multiple consoles..

 

OR Alternatively, steering wheel manufacturers not selling a small cart, or download or something that allows you to switch out from Xbox licenced to ps4 licenced, meaning the massive bit still works, and you only have to switch out a small component.

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This is for things like FFXII after 145 hours of play. 

 

Finish game, credits roll, question do you want to save game? proceeds to save over current main save file, loads me up back at the very start as new game + (things left to do gone to shit), checks last previous save, haven’t used this in about 15 hours, this 15 hours spent repetitively grinding in the same shit dungeon with identical coridoors and maze like rooms, start game or repeat annoying dungeon, return game to shelf, don’t go back. 

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6 hours ago, Freeman said:

OR Alternatively, steering wheel manufacturers not selling a small cart, or download or something that allows you to switch out from Xbox licenced to ps4 licenced, meaning the massive bit still works, and you only have to switch out a small component.

 

This is discussed more extensively in one of the sim racing threads, but Fanatec (whose gear is inherently modular) has an interesting approach to this. You can buy a base unit from them with a PS4 licence and a wheel rim with an Xbox licence. Once they're combined you can use them with either machine.

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16 hours ago, beenabadbunny said:

 

This is discussed more extensively in one of the sim racing threads, but Fanatec (whose gear is inherently modular) has an interesting approach to this. You can buy a base unit from them with a PS4 licence and a wheel rim with an Xbox licence. Once they're combined you can use them with either machine.


Yeah that’s what I did, though the entry cost is more than 2x G29/G920. Ok in sim racing terms it’s still much lower than a whole rig with PC etc..

 The Fanatec system is a nice idea, but if still much more compromised than it could be..

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It's good that almost all games' option menus include the ability to reset all settings to default.

 

But one really minor thing I always appreciate is when each option's default setting is highlighted a different colour. That way, you can quickly set one or two difficulty/control/accessibility settings back to their original values, without having to reset the whole screen full of options.

 

It's one of those really tiny tweaks to presentation that really helps make it feel like the developer has been thoughtful!

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Open world games that make you drive to a start point for a mission, and if you fail the mission you have to drive back to the start point to try again.  All these sorts of games should have a menu you could bring up (like they patched into Burnout Paradise) to retry.  GTA was particularly annoying on some missions, where you spent5 minutes driving to A, the mission then has you drive to B, then the action begins, you get shot, the game whisks you to the hospital, and it's a 10 minute mess around to get back to where you were in the hope you don't get shot again.

 

Also, you should always be allowed to skip cut scenes, but also the gameplay sequences that don't really include any skilled play.  For example, even if you race through, there's a 10 minute opening sequence in Resident Evil 3 where you won't lose, you're following a path but there's nothing to do other than follow that path.  i'd like to be able to start Resi3 at the first typewriter on subsequent playthoughs.  You *could* save of course, but If I'm playing on different difficulties or trying to win bonuses by using as few saves as possible I'm forced to sit through all that every time.

 

Likewise, Resident Evil 7, in VR it's an all time favourite of mine, but that whole opening section where you meet the woman in the basement doesn't involve any gameplay, you just follow the path, go through the motions and the game starts about 20 minutes in when you meet the family. For a game you can speedrun in 80 minutes, having a 20 minute opening you have to walk through every time is a barrier to replaying.

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This feature I mention I wouldn’t say is a massively important one for the majority but it bugs me personally. 

 

Currently I’m playing an older game, Star Ocean 5 from about a decade ago and I’m sure it’s not the only one like this but I hate not being able to pause the game & having the in-game clock pause too. What’s more with this game is that if you reset and put it back on an hour later say after making tea, then there’s a bonus board you can build up during encounter fights  to achieve additional bonuses like exp which disappears and needs to be started from scratch again as this always clears upon restarting a save file. Going to the PS3 OS screen doesn’t make a difference and there is no true pause in game. I’ve seen others that have this issue but have a specific pause button for it. I’ve had ones that aren’t obvious too and only pauses on specific screens like a map but nowhere else. Think that was Assassins Creed. Come to think of it I think it might have even been when reading ingame content text documents which can often go on for a huge amount of time only to not have this added to the total. Can’t say 100% but I’m sure I noticed this once and it was making the time appear well off just because of how much I had to look at every time I’d walk past another landmark or whatever. This is all a vague memory so I can’t quite be sure.

 

I don’t like it when a game doesn’t give you this information either. A lot of them do these days but there was a time It was pretty much only a thing I grew up seeing in RPGs. For some reason I always seem to remember how long it took to play the majority of bigger titles I went through in the past even back to the 90’s. Zelda and Super Metroid are cool in this regard because they tell you after you finish so it’s more a surprise. 

 

For it most people it probably doesn’t matter, but I’ve always liked to see how long a game had accurately had me playing. It’s a strange thing but I play some games and the clock whizzes past without realising. This can sometimes indicate I’m getting into a game and enjoying it enough that I’m not noticing. Others just feel like they are moving at snails pace and that’s when I realise it the game that I’m just not connecting with enough that’s doing it. 

 

Time in a game can help me decide where I can be arsed with it too. I’ve been put off Disgaea because I’ve known two people who have hundreds and in one case 2000 hours put in. It’s permanently put me off. I had a very hard time with Fallout 4 despite loving it simply because I was aware how much time it was taking from me as I’d been on Survival. The irony is that I lost so many hours due to deaths and I’d certainly say this was at least 100 hours it was mental. The finishing time was 250 ish so I knew it was far higher than that and I think I’d struggle to do that again. 

 

Oh and regarding the last example is another false perception of the timer. When we die in a game , do we lose that in game time all of a sudden?. Very often yes and so it’s frustratingly never accurate. You could spend ages repeating a difficult bit for progression or a challenge trophy and yet it won’t accumulate. A lot do get this right though but it depends. 

 

I once played a game not too long ago which I think could have been a Tales game, and it had two timers in it. Hadn’t seen this before but one was the global time and the other was the time you’d currently spent in that single play session. Thought that was a cool little addition.

 

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@Soulstar I never tried it myself (I found out about this after the fact) but FFVIIR handles this well. Bring up the menu and you can see your playtime ticking along in the corner, but if you leave the controller alone for three minutes then the clock will become greyed-out and frozen until you touch the controls again. It’s one of the most minor features ever but it’s definitely appreciated when I’m wondering how far in I actually am... :) 

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That’s really cool. @Qazimod it needs to be refined as a process and that’s an example of fine tuning something that may seem super insignificant, but really useful to know and sticks we me in a lot of games. 

 

A friend of mine is playing Star Ocean 5 atm as I decided to buy it based on him getting it so we could have a discussion over it like it was new or something. So he doesn’t work and has a lot of time to sink where as I tend to be busy so I get 5 hours in and tell him where I’m up to and he laughs and tells me his characters have reached level 33 and he’s now 120 hours into the game. My first reaction was what the actual fuck? Then I realised as I’m not even far off 33 now and only about 30 hours in that he must have been leaving the game on a menu screen while it continued. 

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Every RPG featuring a shop selling equipment needs the following:

  • An easy way to compare what's on sale to what you have equipped.
  • The ability to equip new items as soon as you purchase them.
  • The ability to sell equipped items (but make it clear it's what you have equipped).

The Witcher 3's shops are dreadful for the last two.

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6 hours ago, therearerules said:

Every RPG featuring a shop selling equipment needs the following:

  • An easy way to compare what's on sale to what you have equipped.
  • The ability to equip new items as soon as you purchase them.
  • The ability to sell equipped items (but make it clear it's what you have equipped).

The Witcher 3's shops are dreadful for the last two.


As much as I bang on about Persona, I can’t help it if the game does things right ;) Select gear to buy, and before you confirm the purchase you can compare values to what you currently have equipped. Confirm the purchase, and you get asked if you want to equip it right now. Confirm this, and you’re asked if you want to sell what was equipped previously. Only then are you returned to the shop menu.

 

Slightly related but not: when the player is in the equipment menu of an RPG, they tend to appreciate a single “optimise” button that shows what a character can wear for the highest values. (And then does this for you after you confirm.) Obviously this isn’t always great when the stats are more nuanced (elemental affinities on certain gear etc) but it’s useful at a general-purpose level. :) 

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A quick text recap of the story so far either when you load the game or in a menu somewhere. I notice more games do it than used to but it should be standard in all RPGs and long story-heavy games. Video games are at times by far the longest form of storytelling most people will ever encounter, respect that people are going to take a break from your 120 hour epic and need a refresher.

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Tell me when I’m about to lock into the end of a game, especially one without save slots. Control is superb but I didn’t realise finishing off this one particular big battle would lock me out of doing side missions and stuff until I did the rest of the game.

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This game sack episode isn't exactly the same thing but is definitely pertinent. So many huge annoyances that developers put in games. 

 

 

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That thumbnail is the apotheosis of all shitty gamer YouTube video thumbnails.

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6 hours ago, Spacehost said:

That thumbnail is the apotheosis of all shitty gamer YouTube video thumbnails.

 

Yes, though that one in particular is a pisstake of such things (hence the fire and "ANGER!"). 

 

RE thread: Dunno if this counts but I swear the amount of waiting I do in MGS5 could be optimised better. Sitting in the chopper leaving mother base which is then followed by a loading screen for example. I assume the loading could have been done in the chopper bit.

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11 hours ago, Spacehost said:

That thumbnail is the apotheosis of all shitty gamer YouTube video thumbnails.

Eh they're absolutely not really like that at all, two (well, one now) awkward middle aged guys who mostly like games from the 80s and 90s and have a collection of arcade boards and Japan only consoles and stuff like that and just make videos about old platformers and how good Sunsoft were at music. The absolute opposite of that kind of channel. 

 

That thumbnail is taking the piss out of that sort of thing. 

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 In-game achievement trackers. 

 

Taking the Gears series as an example, achievements were tracked in the first game(not necessarily accurately but anyway) via the Gears website.

 

Gears 2 added in-game trackers but they lacked detail about what had been done so far. So for an achievement that involved doing X on all Y maps, you didn't know which maps had been done so far.

 

Gears 3 and Judgement added detailed trackers so you could see exactly what had been done so far (which map, how many waves of Horde completed etc etc)

 

Gears 4 comes along, and bins all of the achievements tracking functionality that Epic had iterated on over three games. Why? Most likely because Microsoft added a high level achievement tracker to the console itself so The Coalition probably thought "Well, we don't need to bother with that now". Still strikes me as being a teensy bit lazy, especially for a series that had always prided itself on having grindy-as-fuck achievements that just get worse with each new game. At least make things a little easier for us poor saps trying to tick off these utterly pointless rewards.

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Not being able to turn off the music in fighting games used to be a deal-breaker.

 

Not being able to invert look still is.

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3 hours ago, deerokus said:

That thumbnail is taking the piss out of that sort of thing. 

 

8 hours ago, Johnson Geoffrey Johnson said:

Yes, though that one in particular is a pisstake of such things (hence the fire and "ANGER!"). 

So good job then. They nailed it.

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15 hours ago, Spacehost said:

That thumbnail is the apotheosis of all shitty gamer YouTube video thumbnails.

 

Hahah I just spent 2 mins starting at that before continuing to scroll getting angry myself at how annoyingly shit that photo looks. I’m into graphics design and art as well so it obviously is going to irk me. It’s a mess. 

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Already covered above but loads of these things are intensely difficult to implement and would take days or extra programming and testing. 
 

16 hours ago, Spacehost said:

That thumbnail is the apotheosis of all shitty gamer YouTube video thumbnails.

 

Their videos feel like they come from an earlier era of YouTube, trying harder to emulate the editing style of TV rather than the YouTube style which has emerged with the platform. They are pretty informative, but they’re also quite boring, and occasionally a bit weird and libertarian, although that could be another “joke” that I’m not quite sure is supposed to be funny because the guys telling it are so awkward.

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50 minutes ago, Broker said:

Already covered above but loads of these things are intensely difficult to implement and would take days or extra programming and testing. 
 

 

Their videos feel like they come from an earlier era of YouTube, trying harder to emulate the editing style of TV rather than the YouTube style which has emerged with the platform. They are pretty informative, but they’re also quite boring, and occasionally a bit weird and libertarian, although that could be another “joke” that I’m not quite sure is supposed to be funny because the guys telling it are so awkward.

The more awkward one left to go back to his day job. It's just the really knowledgeable guy now. The tone is a bit different as a result. 

 

As for the topic. A great feature I have seen in some games is that when you're quitting they will have a thing that tells you it's been x amount of time since your last save. That should be a standard thing. I love Astral Chain but that game has no manual saves and autosaves somewhat arbitrarily, so before quitting I have to go into the load menu to see what time it last saved at so I know if it is safe to quit. If not you then have to do a quest or something to trigger a save. 

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