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Do developers purposely make their games feel like a damn chore?

NinjaBoiX

Member
Aug 2, 2009
26,141
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Manchester, UK
what if you made a game that was quite literally just doing chores? checks animal crossing sales, apparently you make a lot of money.
Fucking Animal Crossing man, you literally created a daily list of tick box chores dressed up in cutesy clothing, it’s the most menial of player engagement and people lapped it up. I have no idea how people can enjoy a game like that.

It’s really telling that this game took off like a rocket when people no longer had a job to go to...

(No, I’ve never played it. I have some respect for my free time.)
 

Ogbert

Member
Feb 21, 2018
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Some people want a second job. Or, rather, something to fill the time as they are unemployed.

Games like Destiny 2 are in an exceedingly difficult position as the most vocal members of their community put in hours that would see them ace a PhD in under three years. They want to be occupied for 10 hours plus a day. To say nothing of the fact that streamers now need to be able to stream 5 hours plus a day, five days a week.

That’s why there are so many chores.
 

Sejan

Member
Sep 28, 2018
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I really don't mind endless collectables. What bothers me is gameplay design that unnecessarily punishes players without any real benefit. RDR2 is a good example a developer making a game a chore to play without any real gain to the player. They focused on realism to a fault in which players were needlessly punished. It made a tedious game where even basic things like moving through and interacting with the base camp were needlessly slow. In fact, slow was largely the name of the game. Everything was needlessly slow from picking things up and using the menus to virutually every animation.

To be clear, I don't mind punishing games. Games like Dark Souls can be punishing, but they give the player a good, rewarding experience while teaching players how to make it less punishing in the process.
 

Ozzie666

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Jun 27, 2020
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Need to recover development costs somehow. Allow for updates and new downloadable content packs. This is why, when I played and finished Luigi's Mansion 3, I was super impressed. The length of the game, if I recall was 20-25 hours, I was happy with the price paid. There wasn't a lot of fluff. Just goodness throughout. Not ever game needs to be Assassins Creed Valhalla or Persona 5, they should be the exceptions and not the rule. Games as service have really derailed games, hopefully more disasters like Avengers, will change the paradigm shift.
 
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levyjl1988

Member
Jan 31, 2010
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Video game corporations unfortunately approach everything with a “paint by numbers” approach. They go up to their investors and say how many hours players invested in this title. What they fail to mention is how many of those hours are enjoyable. How many of those hours are quality invested and engaged work, and not numb ending tedium.
 

Aesius

Member
May 19, 2009
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I really don't mind endless collectables. What bothers me is gameplay design that unnecessarily punishes players without any real benefit. RDR2 is a good example a developer making a game a chore to play without any real gain to the player. They focused on realism to a fault in which players were needlessly punished. It made a tedious game where even basic things like moving through and interacting with the base camp were needlessly slow. In fact, slow was largely the name of the game. Everything was needlessly slow from picking things up and using the menus to virutually every animation.

To be clear, I don't mind punishing games. Games like Dark Souls can be punishing, but they give the player a good, rewarding experience while teaching players how to make it less punishing in the process.
I’m okay with the overall slowness of RDR2. But not being able to run through the camps is just bullshit game design. Especially when there is actually a lot of unique and interesting interactions to see and dialogue to hear. After Horseshoe Overlook I stopped caring because I couldn’t be bothered hunting everyone down to talk to them when I was moving at a snail’s pace.
 

eyesabitdull

Member
May 10, 2020
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Yes. They do.

I remember some leaked presentation from EA or something that outlined how they would continue to make gamers grind for their games. A system of mechanics that in return would keep you constantly grinding, or give up and pay for loot boxes.

Games are a business more than they are a creation of art and creativity nowadays, they want you to keep playing.
 

Fbh

Member
Dec 6, 2013
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D2 is a GaaS. It's designed to be grindy and keep you playing for a long period of time. Bungie doesn't want to you to see and get everything in 20 hours, they want you logging in daily or weekly for months/years.

But I think even beyond GaaS there has been this annoying trend of games getting longer. Fueled in part by this growing sentiment from some people that if a game isn't X hours long it's not worth full price, and also how effective it still is to advertise your new game as "our biggest project yet".

JRPG's are even worse. In many of them it almost feels like there's this mandate that they need to be 60+ hours long at any cost.
And yet one of the best, most iconic and most beloved games in the genre is still 25 hours long Chrono Trigger.

Hell, even Naughty Dog who had massive success last gen with their 10-15 hours games have now shifted to badly paced, unnecessarily long 30 hours games.
 

Sejan

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Sep 28, 2018
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I’m okay with the overall slowness of RDR2. But not being able to run through the camps is just bullshit game design. Especially when there is actually a lot of unique and interesting interactions to see and dialogue to hear. After Horseshoe Overlook I stopped caring because I couldn’t be bothered hunting everyone down to talk to them when I was moving at a snail’s pace.
I don’t mind a game with a slow pace, but many of the decisions made in RDR2 just feel needlessly punishing without any player benefit. Games like animal crossing and stardew valley do slow gameplay in a way that enhances the overall experience. RDR2 on the other hand needlessly draws out virtually every aspect of the game from animation length to menu navigation for no real benefit. They claimed that they were trying to create and enhance immersion, but it completely took me out of the experience with the complete opposite effect. Basic actions like looting just took so long that it became a chore.
 

Xenon

Member
It began with MMOs trying to keep people engaged to pay next month's fee. Now it's done to keep players in the game and more importantly in its online store. With a certain percentage of people spending a few bucks on in-game purchases. It's a pure numbers racket and balancing giving players enough to keep them engaged but creating fomo for items that can be obtained with cash.
 

Forsythia

Member
Aug 7, 2011
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The Netherlands
Battle Passes are the worst with this. You're expected to put some serious hours into the game to unlock everything and you can hardly play any other game. At that point it's not a game anymore, but work. And worst is, you pay for the privilege to do that work. WTF. Kids starting to game these days think that shit is normal, it's quite depressing.

Remember the time when you weren't playing to unlock shit, but to have fun. I've seen people saying they stop playing as soon as they've unlocked everything. What. Where are the days of Unreal Tournament or Quake where the fun was in getting better, learning the maps and spawns, and just have fun. With free skins and maps from modders and the devs themselves.
 
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D.Final

Banned
Oct 18, 2018
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Fucking Animal Crossing man, you literally created a daily list of tick box chores dressed up in cutesy clothing, it’s the most menial of player engagement and people lapped it up. I have no idea how people can enjoy a game like that.

It’s really telling that this game took off like a rocket when people no longer had a job to go to...

(No, I’ve never played it. I have some respect for my free time.)
I don't think so.
Or, at least, not intentionally
 

nkarafo

Member
Nov 30, 2012
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Yes.

How else they can sell you time saving options?

They literally make games bad to play so they can sell you something that will make them end earlier. Let that sink in.
 

Keihart

Member
Jun 23, 2013
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Answering to the OP tittle, at least some games do. I'm pretty sure you are supposed to feel like Death Stranding it's a chore and that's your incentive to optimize your delivery routes or increase the risks you take out of pure tedium. I think the game succeeds beautifully.


Edit: I see you don't really mean chore in the sense of tedium but more like a job, yeah i don't like games that feel like a job either, which is why i avoid most online rpgs or games that take the grind aspect as a core element of the entertainment, that is unless the game itself is a parody of grinding like Disgaea. But yeah, some people love it, and i get it, they feel just like cleaning your house or tiding up your closet.
 
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