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September 27th, 2019, 11:32
Originally Posted by purpleblob View Post
I play on normal difficulty then gradually increase the difficulty if I want to.

But I know some people definitely wants to feel "l337" - they complain the game is too hard and yet refuse to lower the difficulty as if their life depends on it
I am like purpleblob, I also start on normal and then increase difficulty as I go along. Normally speaking RPG starts "hard" as you are weak and then once you level and gear up things tend to get easier and in some cases way too easy to I increase the difficulty level.

However, when talking about combat, difficulty level is completely relevant as sometime normal and hard can be a different game since enemies can have have different move sets etc.
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September 27th, 2019, 13:31
Originally Posted by joxer View Post
Most games have an achievement "finished the game on insane difficulty" but rarely any has "completed the game" (solved all possible sidequests/sidemissions).
True! I am the one who strongly dislikes leaving something undetected. E.g. I always try out the outcome of different dialogue options.
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September 27th, 2019, 14:17
Balancing is one of the most frequent issues that I see in games, and it's meaningless to discuss this without mentioning difficulty.

And I agree with @xSamhainx. Bumping up enemy hit points is one of the most frequent and at the same time stupid manners to increase difficulty. You know what I want? A separate hit point slider. In every game where that's relevant.

Originally Posted by Eye View Post
True! I am the one who strongly dislikes leaving something undetected. E.g. I always try out the outcome of different dialogue options.
Yep, I can relate to that. But that approach is a type of "hard mode" in itself in certain games. Say, for instance, Assassins Creed Odyssey. Too much stuff going on.
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September 27th, 2019, 14:41
My guess is they have fragile egos and little in the way of accomplishments.

Originally Posted by crpgnut View Post
Tongue-in-cheek

Ok, I'm curious as to why people feel the need to trumpet what difficulty level they play on. Does it make you feel like a tough guy/gal? It's a game. Ooh, I played monopoly without any starting money. Ooh, I sacrificed two pawns in chess. Ooh, I played on Torment level in Can't get laid, but can play a game XVIII I'm sorry it just sounds so pathetic and sad to me. There are some folks who can't talk about playing a game without mentioning it every single time. Good for you have a cookie
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September 27th, 2019, 14:43
Hum - seems the topic has changed course; of course if we are talking about aspects of the game then we need to mention the difficulty as many games change as you change the difficulty but this is a bit different than 'Trumpeting what difficulty level played'….
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September 27th, 2019, 15:02
Originally Posted by you View Post
Hum - seems the topic has changed course; of course if we are talking about aspects of the game then we need to mention the difficulty as many games change as you change the difficulty but this is a bit different than 'Trumpeting what difficulty level played'….
If we’re solely talking about “ trumpeting what difficulty level played” I can’t say I see that much around here. If were talking about the internet as a whole, well then, kids will be kids.
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September 28th, 2019, 05:44
Oops, yeah not here necessarily. I was messing with a guy called killah on Steam and just thought I'd post the same rough idea here. Unless one you guys goes by killah!
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September 28th, 2019, 07:36
I almost always play on "hard", one notch above normal (but not the maximum difficulty). I do so because, typically, you don't need to use much of the game's mechanics/strategy to succeed on normal and I prefer to explore the game systems more thoroughly.
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September 28th, 2019, 15:07
Originally Posted by crpgnut View Post
There are some folks who can't talk about playing a game without mentioning it every single time. Good for you have a cookie
!!! You know, I'm playing Assassin's Creed: Odyssey on hard *AND* I've got about 30 unspent skill points! Have you got chocolate chip?

But yeah, it's pretty clear what's going on. Same with the "I just built a PC with a $1000 CPU and a $1500 video card, will I get 60fps in Valkyria Chronicles" questions. Honestly, though, they're pretty harmless compared to the acid being poured into many forums. I'll take a braggart over somebody who thinks forums are punching bags any day.

P.S. DEFINITELY getting tired of games starting out hard then getting easier and easier as they go on.
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September 28th, 2019, 17:07
Originally Posted by Philistine View Post
We all use games to fill some void in our lives. Challenge addicts may need to feel powerful because they are not in reality, and seek validation.
Or it's the exact opposite of that, and it's the "power fantasy" addicts who are in need of a win

I like challenge, especially for games with gritty settings. For example: Fallout in low difficulty becomes a cartoon, in higher difficulty it's a fight for survival, it's more fitting with the setting.

In reflexes-based games I also prefer higher difficulty because those game are made to attract the wider audience possible and therefore are generally too easy in normal for an old gamer.

I like my "game over" screen, always have.
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September 28th, 2019, 20:00
I'm kind of the opposite of CRPGnut - I sometimes struggle to understand when people don't play on the hardest difficulty. Here are some reasons why I do:

Some thoughts:
1. In my opinion, most game stories are just not that good. There are a few exceptions, but most game stories pale in comparison to more traditional storytelling genres, i.e. books, movies, etc. I suppose you could say that a game with not much challenging gameplay is kind of like a "choose your own adventure book," but I always thought those were pretty lame.

2. If we accept that the stories really are not that good in games, why are we playing them? At least for me, it's for fun gameplay and the challenge of "solving" the game. Can you beat the hardest level on offer - if yes, that is a fun accomplishment.
(And, at least for me, the suggestion that some in this post made that we play on the hardest difficulty to compensate for not having power in real life?!? For me personally, my professional accomplishments are way more impressive than my gaming ones, and yet I probably take more pride in my gaming accomplishments.) If instead the gameplay is easy, I think a game gets boring more quickly, and most stories can't prop up the game on their own.

3. Moreover, you can only be surprised by any one thing once in your life. If you know there is an ambush around the next corner because you already played it on easy or normal difficulty, you will never know if you could've survived it on hard by racking your brain or trusting your reflexes that first time. Perhaps this difficulty issue is why I don't understand how people can replay games - I feel you can only get that awesome "new" or "surprise" experience once, and you do your best to survive without having to reload a save. And when you succeed, it's a great feeling.

4. Finally, many games have systems that you can exploit once you study them and figure them out. I want every incentive to try and find those loopholes and not feel guilty when I do find them - so I need to play on hardest. I never look at guides or cheats, and I avoid spoilers. As a quick example of super analysis that I think is fun, I still have a giant Excel spreadsheet that I made for King's bounty crossworlds that helps me to determine what my optimal army composition would be given my leadership score, the various abilities and stats of the different creatures, the equipment I was wearing, etc. Amusingly, when I played the Orcs on the March campaign, I discovered that the designers had changed the stats on all the creatures such that I had to rework everything, and that was fun too.

5. To sum up, for me the challenge is fun. For me, seeing if I can survive a surprise the first time is fun.

The great thing about there being so many games these days is that we can all find at least some games that cater to our specific interests, even within RPG's.
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September 28th, 2019, 20:30
@Jaguar I'm now going brag about how old I am LOL.

In my opinion, games shouldn't even have difficulty levels. The developers should just make what they want to make, however hard they want to make it and release it as is. Then they can be allowed to concentrate all their development time on only one specific version of the game. And this is why I always choose to play on whatever I think the intended normal difficulty is.

The fact that normal doesn't mean normal anymore is not just a result of people demanding an easy mode, but also a problem of people demanding a hard mode as well IMO. It's become a new version of a check-list feature that's made it harder for a consumer to properly evaluate the quality of a game as one doesn't even know from the outset whether anything has been specifically designed in a certain way or if it's just a case of limited time constraints leading to buggy or imbalanced confusion as a result of juggling too many difficulty options.

The first and early computer games never had difficulty options. You just had a 'play' button. The general routine was that games got gradually harder the more you played them.

Then came the triumvir of easy, normal and hard, to which it was irrelevant if easy or hard were balanced or buggy as most people just played on normal and people having issues with other settings had no impact on assessing whether normal was good or not. Some games went this route but still required you to beat normal before qualifying for hard, which is, IMO, a much better system.

You look at some games now and they have a multitude of difficulty settings, up to five. It's virtually a slider now for all intents and purposes. You read a review and the guy says either "it was too hard" or "it was too easy" and the statements are meaningless without qualification. And worse, because of the dilution of normal, reviewers are now pressured to play on harder difficulties otherwise their review is mocked, when, traditionally, you don't want the reviewer reviewing the weird niche difficulty, you want them reviewing the most properly developed difficulty (which might be the harder difficulty as some games do recommend or state the game is best played on XYZ harder than normal setting).

IMO, it's all just getting silly and messy and the best way to solve the issue is to go back to basics and return to the normal gaming traditions of difficulty settings being optional for developers rather than an expected demand.
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September 28th, 2019, 21:32
Originally Posted by lackblogger View Post
The developers should just make what they want to make […]
Well, yes. Including games with selectable difficulty.

Originally Posted by lackblogger View Post
The first and early computer games never had difficulty options. You just had a 'play' button. The general routine was that games got gradually harder the more you played them.
Is that really relevant? Selectable difficulty modes have been around for decades.

Anyways, I also prefer to play games as they are intended to be played. Yet, I have played games where the "intended" became much too easy (or, less frequently, too hard ), due to poor balancing. Including games where I could not change the difficulty (those still exist). Having the option to correct for the developers' balancing mess is a plus in these cases.
Last edited by Cacheperl; September 28th, 2019 at 22:07.
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September 29th, 2019, 14:37
I'm coming from the Adventure games genre, and that's without many difficulties at all - apart from solving riddles, which it a kind of dificulty in itself.


I have grown into not liking challenges at all, because all that interests me is the story,
not the challenge at all. I want to love, experience a well-told story, but Blizzard has set the standard of producing games with almost no story at all.

I just don't want to be hindered to "live through" a story by combat, riddles, or anything difficult. i just don't want to.

When I'm reading a book, there's no difficulty, either, and that's why I'm drifing more and more away from gaming into reading books again. However, reading Aristotle has its own difficulties, but at least I can cope with that. I even find it pleasant ! (I'm currently reading his book "Poetics".)
However, I don't think that the current eSports masters would be able to dive deeply into Philosophy books … So, I might be good at a kind of difficulty that is different from gaming difficulties …
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September 29th, 2019, 15:55
An adventure game without using any soluce can be the most difficult game in the world. The dog riddles from Monkey Island II (I'm sure you know what I mean) got me stuck for almost two years.
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September 29th, 2019, 21:52
Definitely have to have difficulty levels! Not everyone's skills are the same. I saw that a lot, hanging around in The Last Remnant's forums which had no difficulty options. It certainly was fun to figure out just how to win but the people that couldn't were boned. They ended up using exploits or outright quitting. Blah. Let me pick my higher difficulty and let them pick lower - and maybe raise it up after they get used to the weird system. (Or let me drop it after my bubble bursts!)
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October 4th, 2019, 19:45
Which difficulty. It was a circular binding, to massage players' ego, both players and devs managed to shut down any difficulty.

Difficult games have a huge drawback: they required learning how to be played and gain efficiency when doing so.

It does not fit the big backlog club's agenda which is to consume vid products as much as it is possible.



Originally Posted by Cacheperl View Post
Well, yes. Including games with selectable difficulty.
Actually, it could be read as devs can do what they want to achieve said goal of one and only difficulty level.

One and only difficult level has one property: no division. Having several levels manage to deliver nothing. Neither hard nor easy etc

At the end of the day, devs give up on designing difficulty levels and let players cook their own stuff.

With one difficulty level, either devs do the job or they dont.
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