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March 6th, 2008, 07:31
great article magerette, and doublely great for getting us all to reflect upon our own habits. like others have said, its timing, but i think player demand/desire plays a huge role (and expectations play a huge factor in that). for instance the 'why' are you playing the game you are getting in to:
is it to continue the story line from a prior game?
followup, are you playing the games back to back? (for me this actually helped me get through completely starting over nwn 2 which i got stuck on so i could get to play mask of the betrayer, or in past cases i played deus ex, for the first time, fairly close to deus ex 2 being released. the further apart people seem to play games in a series combined with a change in the gameplay of the series seems to factor significantly in player dissatisfaction, for as others have said our tastes seem to evolve while often our expectations stay the same.)
is it a new game which really excites you, and you've done your 'homework'?(these games stand the most chance of someone enjoying and completing i believe)
gimme some more of that: gameplay or backstory?(sometimes its the craving to shoot, build, manage, or read that is the driving force in game desire and selection. this need can sometimes be easier to fill, but i also believe that in some cases this can also lead to a higher degree of burnout. the other desire is thematic, whether you really want to play games that delve into the history of the middle ages, futuristic architecture of cyberpunk, or the expansive tolkienesque fantasy kingdoms. for me those often provide a much more sustainable game drive, and their 'atmosphere' subverts and distracts me from what can sometimes be mundane or quirky gameplay. take for instance nwn. bought the diamond edition a couple of years ago and played for about 5 hours or so and lost complete interest:no characters of interest and fairly forgetful art direction. i enjoyed nwn2 when it came out but after sinking so many hours 40+, it just was to much gameplay when i got to the keep management and jugling nearly a dozen characters all whose storys i was interested in more or less. it wasn't until this year i took it up again and stayed at if for over a month and jumped right in to the wonderful motb which took a considerablely shorter amount of time but had none of the problems of nwn2 and i though the epic items and levels seemed not a problem as there was so few of them. but now the world of faerun has grabbed me and i've started up the original nwn over the weekend and even printed out a large scale map (first for me) which hangs on my wall (much to my wife's puzzlement) and helps to fuel my interest into massive world of faerun.
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