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June 8th, 2010, 06:37
In no particular order….

1. Decide what a game will and won't do based on little evidence. Pre-release hype is all well and good, previews are nice, but nothing is better than a solid review of a game to tell you what it's really doing. Note that publishers will sometimes shell out some serious incentives to encourage you to pre-order a game based soley on the advertising hype they have released, which is an excellent way to fall into this trap. Do yourself a favor: wait an extra week or two and read some reviews.

2. Have no idea what you really like. The point of a review is not to tell you whether a game is good or not. The point of a review is to tell you whether YOU will like a game or not. They do this by telling you how the game works, how well it controls, what kind of bugs are in the game, and so on. None of which will do you the slightest bit of good if you don't know yourself well enough to know what you like and don't like. Whenever you play a game, it's important to take stock and try to figure out what you are enjoying and what's not fun for you. Once you have that down, reviews will help you quite a bit - even reviews from people with different tastes.

3. Don't know your computer system. You need to be able to check your system stats against the game's minimum specs. If you don't meet the specs, don't buy the game. If you aren't sure, see if you can find a demo. (Do NOT pirate the game just to 'test it out.') Once you have the game installed, the first order of business is not to dive right into the game. The first thing you want to do is fiddle with the graphics and sound options. And don't go crazy in there. If you barely meet the minimum specs then you aren't going to max out the graphics. Remember that pride goeth before the fail!

4. Rush through the game. This one really shocks me when I see it. People pay a good hunk of money for a game, then they go right out to the internet to find out what the fastest/easiest way is to get through the game. This is an awful thing to do! It's the same as renting a movie then watching it all in fast forward mode.

5. Fear getting help. Most games are, at their core, a sort of puzzle. Even the hyper-fast shooters require you to figure out some basic strategies like what targets to hit first and which weapons to use. You'll figure out most of the puzzles but some are going to stump you. When you get stumped in a video game, it probably means you're going to find yourself having an awful time progressing or even getting stopped entirely. If that happens, fire up the Internet, head over to some place like gamefaqs, and try to figure out what's going wrong. As W.C. Fields would have said if he had lived an extra 70 years: "If at first you don't succeed, try try again. Then go to the internet. No sense making a damn fool of yourself."

6. Be unlucky. Developers are working hard to make a game people enjoy. Reviewers are (mostly ) working hard to give you an idea of what to expect. You're working hard to piece what you will and won't like about the game. And still you can end up with a stinker. Maybe something about the story annoys you to no end, maybe something about the game doesn't work like you thought it did, maybe the game makes you motion sick… Sometimes it won't work out. See if you can figure out why then move on.
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June 8th, 2010, 10:48
7. Get all excited and fail to notice it's DRM , be probed for an online activation after install , activate and download update 1.02 . Then out of curiosity look at your "My Documents" folder and find that securom has sneaked in , spent the next 3 hours searching for a crack only to realise that there isn't one for 1.02 update.
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June 8th, 2010, 11:10
Disagree with #4. Brains are wired differently and not everyone takes pleasure from an experience the same way. There are people who get a rush out of solving puzzles and beating challenges and they play games in one way. There are people who get a rush out of having a virtual experience that touch all their emotions, they play games in another way. There are people who get more out of studying the design or architecture and want to know how things are done beneath the surface, they play the games in yet another way. I could go on.

With the amount of games available today there's no need to spend time on a game beyond it's entertainment value. A movie tend to be 1-2 hours long, some games can take weeks even if you play them daily that can easily be extended to months if you do so without assistence. If you happen to live a busy life and still want to get yourself through the Final Fantasy series before you die, well you better grab that game guide with the game.

One way to enjoy a game is to know what makes you entertained. (2)
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Okay, now roll sanity.


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June 8th, 2010, 11:46
Is it time to make a "How to Love Your New Game"?




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June 10th, 2010, 04:20
Actually Tragos, in all my decades of gaming, the only time DRM caused me real pain was with Gothic 3. I had to download a 64-bit version of Starforce (or whatever it was) to get it to work on my new PC. Then I quickly found out that Gothic 3 would also be the only modern game I've found that didn't work on Vista.

JemyM, I'm still not getting the rushers. So they have busy lives - maybe very busy lives. A 40 hour game would take them half a year to get through. So what? It's not like the game is going to go rotten on them.

It's like they are reading a book by just reading the first sentence of every paragraph. That might work well enough to make a book report for school or if you just want to get the gist of some non-fiction, but I can't see how anyone would actually have fun doing that (unless they were in a race with somebody else). I can't see how anyone could possibly have any fun playing a game as fast as they possibly can unless it is actually some sort of timed race.

DArtagnan - that article is left as an exercise for the student. Go for it.
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June 13th, 2010, 14:58
Two more for the losers:

8. The action is so difficult that you end feel you are a total loser and don't want put more time in training to be better in the crap, so you jump on forums to explain the junk is the game. That's all me this! Ha well I have my good moment too.

9. The puzzles are so difficult that you start have doubt if you have a brain or not, when you realize it's much more comfortable to identify that the game is a total crap with poor puzzles badly implemented because of a lack of good hints…. You know what follow.
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June 16th, 2010, 00:36
10. Get a end sequence that doesn't match the game length and the work for reaching the end at all. In the worst case it consists just of a text line just appearing out of a sudden and saying : "Okay, that's it ! That's all ! Thank you for playing !"

(I'm glad I have never experienced such a simple text line …)
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