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  • Game Design 101: Tipping the Scales

    Oct 28 2014 11:11 PM | SkyBlueFox in Media Reviews

    When designing games, one aspect that often requires rigorous amounts of testing is the difficulty curve. The developers themselves can, will, and indeed do, test their own game while making it, but as the developers of the game are so intimately familiar with it and spend so much time involved with it (for obvious reasons), oftentimes they can become desensitized to the difficulty some levels or areas may have. This is the reason that other people, unaffiliated or otherwise mostly uninvolved with the project at large, are brought in to help with game testing, as a fresh pair of eyes with little knowledge of the game and its mechanics provides a perspective closer to what most of the game's buyers will likely have: going into the game with little to no prior knowledge.

    If the game devs have gotten so used to their own skill and testing of the game that they've made the game difficult for themselves – instead of difficult for the main group of consumers – then it's likely that the project will need to undergo a large shift. The levels may need to be tweaked or even overhauled outright, in order to make sure that the game has a proper, smoother difficulty curve.

    Not every game is able to undergo that sort of heavy amount of testing, however. Open-world games, for example, are just that: open-world, and thus due to the freedom the player is provided, there isn't a way to fully design the game to have a universally smooth difficulty curve. Some players mi...

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