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#251003 - 12/22/07 02:42 PM What makes you enjoy a game ?
Jenny100 Offline
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Registered: 10/24/00
Posts: 34868
Loc: southeast USA
What makes you enjoy a game ?
If a game does a few things really well, but not everything, can you still enjoy it or do the not so well done (or badly done) parts spoil the whole thing for you? Are there certain things you can overlook and focus on the good things? What makes a minor annoyance and what makes a game-spoiler?

For example, a game like Kheops' Safecracker has some fun puzzles, but doesn't have much story to speak of. But then it even says on the box/can that it's "The Ultimate Puzzle Adventure." So do you really expect a rousing story and intriguing characters when you buy that kind of a game?

Or a game like Dreamfall... It had pretty 3D graphics and above average story and characters, but the lock puzzles were repetitive, the controls were iffy, there were some badly implemented fight sequences, there weren't nearly as many puzzles as in its predecessor TLJ, and the ending was unsatisfying. So were the story, characters and graphics alone enough to make it enjoyable?

Or Keepsake -- a game with fun puzzles, an optional Hint feature, and a beautiful castle to explore. But the voice acting was not what it should have been, and unwanted conversations would periodically start up and interrupt what you were doing.

Which is worse? Really really bad voice acting from a character you have to speak with only once or twice in a game, or moderately bad voice acting from a character you have to speak with often?

Say you have a game that does nothing really wrong, but is formulaic and predictable. Is it more enjoyable or less enjoyable for you than a game that has some really outstanding aspects, but which also includes some well known and potentially avoidable annoyances (for example, bad inventory design where it takes 6 clicks to use a single item -- or non-skippable arcade "challenges" which take 12 hours, a nimble-fingered friend or family member, or a saved game to get past).

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#251027 - 12/22/07 03:11 PM Re: What makes you enjoy a game ? [Re: Jenny100]
Becky Offline
The Medieval Lady
Sonic Boomer

Registered: 02/16/00
Posts: 26890
Loc: Stony Brook, New York, USA
The worst on your list, in my opinion, is a challenge (like an arcade challenge) that a lot of people need a saved game to get by. That's a far more significant failure than iffy voice acting or a game that's formulaic.

I like a variety in adventure games -- I enjoyed both Safecracker and Dreamfall, though for different reasons. No game is perfect. Sometimes very ambitous games can fail more spectacularly than less ambitious games because they are reaching for the stars -- huge locations or cutting-edge graphics or innovative puzzles. Still, I like to see the ambition.






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#251039 - 12/22/07 03:32 PM Re: What makes you enjoy a game ? [Re: Jenny100]
hatshepsut Offline
Settled Boomer

Registered: 09/22/07
Posts: 175
Loc: United States
What makes a game enjoyable for me is an engaging character and storyline that draws you into them and makes you care about the character and what happens. I really enjoy good graphics. A really tedious puzzle that takes hours or days and alot of hairpulling to solve lowers my enjoyability to some extent. I enjoy a game that throws something unexpected at you. I enjoy a game that I want it to keep going instead of ending. Everything else is just a minor annoyance.
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#251048 - 12/22/07 03:50 PM Re: What makes you enjoy a game ? [Re: hatshepsut]
Tyke Offline
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Registered: 09/24/04
Posts: 13800
Loc: West Yorkshire/U.K.
I can forgive a multitude of small 'sins' in a game (I even liked The Mystery of the Druids) rotfl
But the show stoppers for me are those annoying arcade challenges that you and Becky mentioned, and also those awful timed sequences that are very stingy with the time, I still have nightmares about chasing candy with 8 second intervals between in Simon 3D, and the Shooting Gallery in Wanted a Wild West Adventure eek
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#251057 - 12/22/07 04:19 PM Re: What makes you enjoy a game ? [Re: Tyke]
Rushes Offline
The Three Pipe Moderator
True Blue Boomer

Registered: 07/10/05
Posts: 23442
Loc: UK
Whether it's a game that's puzzle-heavy with little or next to no story, or one that's heavy on plot and dialogue and skimpy on the puzzles, I really don't mind - all I ask is that it's of a high quality. Which means, essentially, in addition to the aforementioned: good graphics, good voice acting, and a user-friendly interface.

Bad voice acting can kill a game stone-dead for me. Keepsake was gorgeous to look at. Sure, the puzzles were difficult, but there was a hint system, I muddled through them. wink Oh, but the voice acting for almost every character... it made me want to throw myself off the nearest available virtual balcony. Dreadful with a 6ft high capital D. I may never replay Keepsake because of this.

Timed sequences, as Tyke says, can also quite completely ruin a game if they are stingy and unforgiving. I do not wish to race around an underwater maze/exploding laboratory/deep dark ooky forest, squealing like a stuck pig; I wish to play my adventure game in peace, at my own pace, with nice scenery and fun puzzles, thank you very much. But that is my preference, and others may like the added tension of timed sequences. grin (Having said that, I can perhaps forgive games their timed puzzles if the rest of the game is fun and includes all of the positive elements I burbled about earlier.)
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#251063 - 12/22/07 04:48 PM Re: What makes you enjoy a game ? [Re: Jenny100]
Albert Offline
Addicted Boomer

Registered: 11/21/99
Posts: 1066
Loc: Glennville, Ga., USA
Absolutely its the story. I hate time pressure puzzles too, but can tolerate some if the story is good enough. Better graphics are better. Better sound is better. But nothing will ever make up for the story.

Albert

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#251068 - 12/22/07 05:08 PM Re: What makes you enjoy a game ? [Re: Albert]
Sally(MG) Offline
Settled Boomer

Registered: 08/13/07
Posts: 415
Loc: Canada
My first adventure games were "puzzle" adventures, and although they were good, I had much more fun playing something with more...coherence.

On the other hand, my favorite adventure game of all time is about a tentacle that grew arms and took over the planet, where we used chornojohns (portapotties) to transport inventory items, and the plot twists are more humourous and non-sensical than earth-shattering.

My list:
Good puzzles
Funny (tongue in cheek)
coherent storyline
Good voice acting
(I'm a fan of Tim Schafer)

with all that, I'm willing to:
- sit through FPS control schemes
- do timed mazes
- turn off the sound if some of the acting is horrid
- play a game from 1995.

Case in point: Day of the Tentacle (3 times), Grim Fandango (twice), Discworld Noir (twice), Zork Grand Inquisitor (twice), Return to Zork, The entire Monkey Island series...

They don't make them like they used to. :/
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#251077 - 12/22/07 05:23 PM Re: What makes you enjoy a game ? [Re: Sally(MG)]
Jenny100 Offline
GB Reviewer Glitches Moderator
Sonic Boomer

Registered: 10/24/00
Posts: 34868
Loc: southeast USA
Originally Posted By: Sally(MG)
On the other hand, my favorite adventure game of all time is about a tentacle that grew arms and took over the planet, where we used chornojohns (portapotties) to transport inventory items, and the plot twists are more humourous and non-sensical than earth-shattering.

Comedy games are really more about the characters than the plot. It's usually the same way in comedy movies or plays. The plot is not generally what people remember about them. It's the characters and their idiosyncracies that are memorable.

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#251123 - 12/22/07 07:34 PM Re: What makes you enjoy a game ? [Re: Jenny100]
jldcat Offline
Addicted Boomer

Registered: 08/01/06
Posts: 1363
Loc: Ontario, Canada
For me it's gameplay all the way..... I'm not much into story driven games or games with a lot of reading and talking. I find that I just don't listen and rely on a walkthrough for those types of games. I still play them though but don't get as much fun from them as I do with games that have quests or things to find. I guess I would say that I'm more of an inventory type game lover. Keepsake was awesome and I didn't even pay attention to whether or not the voice acting was good or not. I would be more likely to enjoy a game with crappy voice acting and so-so graphics if it was a game that lasted more than 10 hours. Guess that means I'm a quantity kind of gal rather than quality.

I don't like timed sequences and I think that game makers should always include a "pass" for the arcade type puzzles. I myself love them but was taxed at the shooting game in Wanted a Wild West Adventure. I'm one of the few that really enjoy the arcade type puzzles in Nancy Drew like making breakfast, lunch and dinner etc.

What I hate the most are the arcade type games where you have to think 3 or 4 moves ahead in order to do them like that fox and geese game in Nancy Drew or the othello type puzzles in other games.
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#251212 - 12/23/07 04:09 AM Re: What makes you enjoy a game ? [Re: jldcat]
dragonuk44 Offline
Addicted Boomer

Registered: 02/20/05
Posts: 3572
Loc: stoke on trent England
Good story .Runs well on the computor and the voices matter to .Story more tan any thing and you have to like the charactors I guess .Keep repeating a scene over and over again puts me of espesily when I know what to do but just arnt fast enough rolleyes

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#251225 - 12/23/07 05:15 AM Re: What makes you enjoy a game ? [Re: dragonuk44]
Butcher Offline
Addicted Boomer

Registered: 03/24/07
Posts: 1263
Loc: Larnaca, Cyprus
I am greedy and want a bit of everything. If a game has a good storyline and gameplay but lacks on the visual part I might not even install it. Voice acting on the other hand is not very important to me as long as it's noy completely bad. If the voice acting is good then it adds to it but i won't reject a game due to bad voice acting.
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#251281 - 12/23/07 08:14 AM Re: What makes you enjoy a game ? [Re: Butcher]
old lady Offline
Settled Boomer

Registered: 05/17/06
Posts: 582
Loc: cornwall england
A really good game for me has to have -
1 a good story - humour is a bonous
2 good graphics
3 good acting
4 subtitles
5 logical puzzles bravo

A bad game would
1 have timed puzzles
2 any technical problems
3 dead ends when you have to go back to a save
4 miles of walking because my athritic knees can't take it! shame




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#251646 - 12/23/07 09:51 PM Re: What makes you enjoy a game ? [Re: old lady]
Preston C. Offline
Shy Boomer

Registered: 07/07/07
Posts: 76
Good story, although I do enjoy good graphics, they really add to the atmosphere and feeling of the game. I like easier puzzles, and not a lot of challenging things in the game. Good characters are great, good atmosphere, good voice acting, good character interaction, really really good directing, etc.

I really want to see things in real time in Adventure Games. Like trees blowing, rain on and off, etc. I would really enjoy that. It would definitely add to the atmosphere of the game.

Great graphics are a big plus for me, because they give the game such a good feel, and story is highly important.

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#251748 - 12/24/07 06:15 AM Re: What makes you enjoy a game ? [Re: Preston C.]
Tomer Offline
Settled Boomer

Registered: 06/12/07
Posts: 785
Loc: Tel Aviv, Israel.
Good story, and good puzzles that support it (and not themselves alone)
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#252104 - 12/24/07 06:32 PM Re: What makes you enjoy a game ? [Re: Tomer]
gamenut Offline
Addicted Boomer

Registered: 02/08/00
Posts: 1540
Loc: Hiding Under a Rock
I love great atmosphere, story, graphics, sound, character development and ease of navigation! Maps would have been helpful in some games! Also it makes a difference when the developer takes the extra time for testing (even though pressure to get the game out quickly )and will also answer their own email!!

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#252301 - 12/25/07 10:01 AM Re: What makes you enjoy a game ? [Re: gamenut]
Sherryah Offline
Addicted Boomer

Registered: 11/18/07
Posts: 1827
Loc: land gal just wanna have fun
I agree with all the above and I love the talking part but I want to make a difference in what response I give, so it will bring another dimension to the game and outcome. One thing not mentioned that really irks me the worst is a bad ending. I hate games that make you feel like you wasted all those hours because the ending is uncompleted. I loved Culpa Innata and Still life, but I felt like the ending did not answer many questions. After all I play adventure games because I am a frustrated wanna be detective and the ending of the game I want to know I solved. I also love games like Runaway both 1 and 2 because the sense of humor and graphics were great and voices. I loved playing the characters. Plus the ease of click and point for movement, It never made me nauseous like some movement in games. That is my 2 cents worth. OH before I forget, I do not want to be forced to buy a new computer just to buy a new game like for instance newest CSI I cannot even play it after my husband bought it for me for a gift.

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#252472 - 12/25/07 09:21 PM Re: What makes you enjoy a game ? [Re: Sherryah]
Darleen03 Offline
Adept Boomer

Registered: 12/13/03
Posts: 14588
Loc: Northeast NJ
Hi Jenny100..

Good topic...

I will make this short..For me its the graphics, and how Spooky the game is... scared
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#252637 - 12/26/07 11:42 AM Re: What makes you enjoy a game ? [Re: Darleen03]
bkrytr Offline
Addicted Boomer

Registered: 05/15/03
Posts: 1256
Loc: North Carolina
I agree with Sherryah. I love the 'reality' of shadows and blowing grass, but get irked with such things as the signs that 'squeaked' in the wind (Evil Under the Sun), but never moved. And don't like a good story line that ends
Click to reveal..
in the hero's death
(Black Mirror), or a game that teases (Scratches), but only has
Click to reveal..
one spooky sighting at the end.
I also don't care for long, drawn out, (boooring) dialogue, that sounds like the speakers are all tone deaf (Anicapri). What I do like is: plots with twists and turns and good strong characters (Evil, Dead Reefs, all the Gab Knights, all the Sherlocks and the Broken Swords, etc) with a touch of humor. smile


Edited by Becky (12/26/07 06:41 PM)
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#252687 - 12/26/07 01:38 PM Re: What makes you enjoy a game ? [Re: dragonuk44]
ssgamer Offline
Addicted Boomer

Registered: 08/01/04
Posts: 1046
Loc: Colorado
Story driven, character interaction, visual, interesting scenes, the ability to travel from my chair, those are my keeper games.
Timed scenes in which only the very dexterious have a chance, or games that won't at last resort take a save, or games you can't finished because of an impossible situation. Like ND Secret of the old Clock, get thrown out with the trash.

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#252766 - 12/26/07 04:01 PM Re: What makes you enjoy a game ? [Re: ssgamer]
Cari Offline
Settled Boomer

Registered: 01/30/14
Posts: 688
Story lines that take you on an interactive journey, puzzles that are woven into the plot, solutions that are logical, however difficult. I live in hope of finding one

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#252830 - 12/26/07 06:42 PM Re: What makes you enjoy a game ? [Re: ]
Becky Offline
The Medieval Lady
Sonic Boomer

Registered: 02/16/00
Posts: 26890
Loc: Stony Brook, New York, USA
Bkrytr -- I've added spoiler tags so that people who haven't played Black Mirror or Scratches yet won't find out info about the endings. thumbsup

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#253129 - 12/27/07 01:18 PM Re: What makes you enjoy a game ? [Re: Becky]
Jenny100 Offline
GB Reviewer Glitches Moderator
Sonic Boomer

Registered: 10/24/00
Posts: 34868
Loc: southeast USA
..
I like a game that's good at what it sets out to be good at.

If a game is meant to be story driven, then it better have a good story -- and not just a good story. The characters are at least as important as the story. This is where bad voice acting hurts the most. Bad voice acting makes the characters annoying and/or not realistic, and that affects how much I'm drawn into the story. I can get used to reading text instead of hearing voices, but I can't get used to a voice that doesn't match the character's appearance, or that sets my teeth on edge. And I don't like playing as a whiner.

If a game is meant to be a puzzler, the puzzles have to be good. They have to be logical. And the controls for operating them have to be convenient to manipulate, whether they are inventory puzzles or purely mechanical puzzles. Story and characters are not as important with puzzlers. The bad voice acting in Aura didn't detract significantly from my enjoyment of it because my attention was drawn to exploring the very pretty gameworld and figuring out the puzzles -- and not to the rather generic story about the evil bad guy wanting to take over the world.

It would be nice if a game could be great at everything, but I don't think it's possible -- at least not with the low budgets that adventure game designers have to work with. And there are certain types of puzzles that fit in OK in a puzzler, but would be out of place in a story driven game.

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#253332 - 12/27/07 09:21 PM Re: What makes you enjoy a game ? [Re: ]
bigmamma1 Offline
Settled Boomer

Registered: 04/26/02
Posts: 841
Loc: florida
A game that: installs and plays without glitches
has a good story
logical puzzles that are woven in with the story
interesting, unique or funny characters
fantastic locations and eye candy
no impossible timed sequences
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#253372 - 12/27/07 11:38 PM Re: What makes you enjoy a game ? [Re: bigmamma1]
-=sinotek=- Offline
Settled Boomer

Registered: 08/30/04
Posts: 402
Loc: Israel
Good story, and lot's of humor. Thats whats what makes a game good for me. A game with humor is the best kind in my opinion. I just loved the Monkey Island series.
And of course it has to have a good voice acting to execute these jokes well. Worst voice acting in a game I can recall was in Next Life. Just horrible voice acting that nearly made me pass on this game.


Edited by -=sinotek=- (12/27/07 11:39 PM)

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#253488 - 12/28/07 09:52 AM Re: What makes you enjoy a game ? [Re: -=sinotek=-]
BeaSong Offline
Addicted Boomer

Registered: 01/30/04
Posts: 2945
Loc: rural Oregon, USA
I'm a visual person, so the less I have to read or listen to dialog the better for me. So, it goes without saying that the graphics are what draws me into the game, then the puzzles, untimed, let me wander and think. If it's too hard I get bored with it. If it's too easy, it goes too fast. So, the 'perfect' game for me doesn't need a walkthrough or require that I ask someone for a saved game and allows me to learn something interesting. So far, I haven't found the 'perfect' game, but that doesn't mean that I don't enjoy trying all of them out. I just don't finish some of them.
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#253675 - 12/28/07 04:22 PM Re: What makes you enjoy a game ? [Re: BeaSong]
Kickaha Offline
Addicted Boomer

Registered: 03/27/01
Posts: 2407
Loc: Cambridge, England
What makes a game enjoyable is very subjective - even whether the puzzles are good or the ending bad is something personal.

A big factor in me enjoying a game is not the game itself, but my expectation of it. Too much hype and a game is likely to fall short. But if I can play a game on its own terms, feel like I'm the first person through those caverns, then it can worm its way into my affections.
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#254596 - 12/30/07 01:38 PM Re: What makes you enjoy a game ? [Re: BeaSong]
Mad Offline
True Blue Boomer

Registered: 11/21/00
Posts: 22798
Loc: United Kingdom
Hi smile

For me to truly enjoy a game the two things it must have are a good story and an easily manageable interface cool

I can cope with non-state-of-the-art graphics, less than perfect voice-overs, below par music and even some arcade stuff .... but I absolutely HATE long and involved timed action sequences that end in death mad

Cheers.

Mad wave

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#255049 - 12/31/07 10:06 AM Re: What makes you enjoy a game ? [Re: Jenny100]
Jess519 Offline
Settled Boomer

Registered: 08/18/06
Posts: 246
Loc: Chicago
Originally Posted By: Jenny100
I like a game that's good at what it sets out to be good at.

Jenny100, your post is pretty much exactly how I feel too. smile What's most important for my enjoyment of a game varies depending on what type of game it's trying to be.

And I can put up with quite a bit of bad aspects to a game as long as there's some good and/or great to make up for it.

The only thing that can truly kill a game for me is too many obscure inventory puzzles. I can't stand puzzles that involve clicking all your inventory on a hotspot until you find the inventory item that works, because the solution is the weirdest inventory item you never thought of using. Or puzzles that involve weird combinations of inventory items to create a new item. If a game has too much of these types of puzzles, I'll usually still finish them but will resort to a walkthru, b/c it's not fun for me to keep randomly clicking. And even though I'll finish them it kind of kills my enjoyment.


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