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#335230 - 05/28/08 05:24 PM Re: Puzzle Madness [Re: Volkana]
Becky Offline
The Medieval Lady
Sonic Boomer

Registered: 02/16/00
Posts: 26893
Loc: Stony Brook, New York, USA
I'm thinking about what Argyle just said. Gobobby, would you consider the lever-pulling challenges in Myst to be puzzles or problems?

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#335235 - 05/28/08 05:31 PM Re: Puzzle Madness [Re: Volkana]
LindaMarion Offline
Settled Boomer

Registered: 10/22/07
Posts: 318
it was so very many years ago argyle1968 that i cant remember details but i do remember shivers-1 was a very good game.i remember one puzzle i couldnt do it was a well known one were you had to move buttons over others taking them away i forget the name of that type
i must have done it cos i finished the game whole but i know i couldnt solve it.so there must have been a bypqass system or else he full instructions were written in some walkthrough

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#335236 - 05/28/08 05:37 PM Re: Puzzle Madness [Re: LindaMarion]
Rushes Offline
The Three Pipe Moderator
True Blue Boomer

Registered: 07/10/05
Posts: 23644
Loc: UK
That sounds like peg solitaire, LindaMarion. I enjoy those types of puzzles. smile
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#335239 - 05/28/08 05:43 PM Re: Puzzle Madness [Re: Volkana]
cl0vis Offline
Shy Boomer

Registered: 05/21/08
Posts: 19
Loc: N. KY, USA
I was actually writing something at work on this topic (while wasting time)! I'm not a big fan of puzzles. The original Sierra Quests will always be the standard definition of an adventure game for me, and they rarely included "puzzles". Sometimes they destroy any realism or immersion the game had created up to that point.

Can someone explain to me why aliens keep putting locks on doors that take 3 minutes to figure out? Why do criminal masterminds use locks where you can see the tumblers?? Why do the bad guys leave the solution to their puzzle locks in the same room as the lock itself???? Also, as people have pointed out, the puzzles are getting really repetitive. That's not fun. Oh boy, a slider. Oh boy, I get to punch the buttons until they are all it. Oh boy, I get to line up all the circuits. Blech.

I do enjoy playing with "mysterious machines" though.

Should inventory based puzzles be called something else? I like those, unless the solutions are so bizzare you have to resort to trying all combinations of items and hotspots. Return to Mysterious Island handled the inventory really well.

While I don't care for dialogue trees too much, I do like having good dialogue that is itself a puzzle. Meaning that you have to pay attention to figure out what to do next.

I think Pandora: Black Plague was great "puzzle"-wise. You either had to use real world physics to get past the problem, or use logical inventory items that could be combined. You were sometimes required to read something in order to know what to do next. Adventure game stories have problems to over come. In the past this often required abstract puzzles. But with 3D worlds and real world physics, you can solve the problems in a realistic way. Get rid of the monsters chasing you down in Penumbra and it's (almost) perfect.

Oh, and since I'm, like, tone deaf, I can't stand sound puzzles. I have to get my wife to help me.
_________________________
// cl0vis
// standing on the shoulders of giants,
// leaves me cold -- Stipe

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#335305 - 05/28/08 07:32 PM Re: Puzzle Madness [Re: Becky]
Gobobby Offline
Settled Boomer

Registered: 12/14/07
Posts: 272
Loc: New Mexico
Becky, I have never played any of the Myst games exactly because they contain so many puzzles. I understand though, from reviews, that the games do contain some problems. Gorgeous graphics though.

Imagine that instead of purchasing the video game "The Adventures of Great Hero" you purchase and install the "Great Hero Puzzle Set" containing only the puzzles in the game. You click the mouse. "READY FOR PUZZLE # 1? It is a keypad puzzle which you have seen at least a dozen times. By trial-and-error again, you enter the correct sequence. Musical fanfare. "CONGRATULATIONS! YOU HAVE JUST WON 250 POINTS! READY FOR PUZZLE #2? You can solve all the puzzles in the game without ever playing the game because the puzzles are not integral to the game.

If you play an "adventure" game and solve all of the puzzles in the minimum amont of time, complete the game in 25 hours, and spent 20 hours solving the puzzles, have you really played an adventure game?

My favorite game is "The Moment of Silence." It was not very popular. Those of you who have played the game, of course, will remember the "antenna" sequence at the end of the game. You are required to remember what you learned earlier in the game, use "the little grey cells," do some arithmetic, and carry out the appropriate action. The game continues. The tension mounts. Of course, unlike the keypad puzzle, you had to first determine what had to be done.

I recently played the newest entry in a justifiably popular adventure game series. Near the end of the game a life is in immediate peril. Death. Quick action is required. Then? You must solve three puzzles, starting with a slider puzzle. C'mon!
Gimme a break! That's when I gave up on the game.
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The cleanest thing in your house is your cat

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#335315 - 05/28/08 07:47 PM Re: Puzzle Madness [Re: Gobobby]
Becky Offline
The Medieval Lady
Sonic Boomer

Registered: 02/16/00
Posts: 26893
Loc: Stony Brook, New York, USA
So a "problem" is a challenge that you could not solve without remembering information given earlier in the game? (Perhaps an example would be the code-breaking puzzles in The Experiment where you have to read emails that explain how to break the codes.)

A "puzzle" is a challenge that can be figured out entirely on its own, using either trial and error or the puzzle's own internal logic without reference to any other part of the game. (Perhaps an example would be the "Sudoku" puzzle in The Secrets of Atlantis: The Sacred Legacy.)

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#335356 - 05/28/08 09:19 PM Re: Puzzle Madness [Re: Becky]
cl0vis Offline
Shy Boomer

Registered: 05/21/08
Posts: 19
Loc: N. KY, USA
If you really like "puzzles", go buy a DS and the game Professor Layton. It's essentially 120 some puzzles held together by a think plot. It's all about puzzles that have almost nothing to do with the story. Some of the puzzles are pretty good. And if you get a DS you can play the Phoenix Wright games, which are basically adventure games. Oh, and get Puzzle Quest if you like bejewelled, but always wished you could kill zombies by playing it.
_________________________
// cl0vis
// standing on the shoulders of giants,
// leaves me cold -- Stipe

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#335478 - 05/29/08 07:51 AM Re: Puzzle Madness [Re: Becky]
Argyle1968 Offline
Shy Boomer

Registered: 05/27/08
Posts: 99
Originally Posted By: Becky
So a "problem" is a challenge that you could not solve without remembering information given earlier in the game? (Perhaps an example would be the code-breaking puzzles in The Experiment where you have to read emails that explain how to break the codes.)

A "puzzle" is a challenge that can be figured out entirely on its own, using either trial and error or the puzzle's own internal logic without reference to any other part of the game. (Perhaps an example would be the "Sudoku" puzzle in The Secrets of Atlantis: The Sacred Legacy.)



That's one way of looking at it. When I think "problem", that usually conjures up "engineering" while "puzzle" is more of a game. Let's see....um, in Riven, figuring out what the controls in the sub did, and how they affected the movement, that would be what I would call a "problem". Whereas the safe locks in Safecracker or Stauf's puzzles in T7G and T11H were more of the puzzle variety. IMO a puzzle is more of a hurdle to get from one part of a linear storyline to another, while a problem is something that requires experimentation, other bits of info, as you said, and some deductive reasoning.








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#335517 - 05/29/08 09:12 AM Re: Puzzle Madness [Re: Argyle1968]
Cari Offline
Settled Boomer

Registered: 01/30/14
Posts: 691
When I started playing AGs I delighted at solving the puzzles and being rewarded in advancing through the game. But as the years went on the puzzles became ever more repetitive, many became an attachment, not a part of the game, illogical and the just plain silly.
I think that the developers, well at least some, tried something new by introducing action, stealth etc into games but for the majority it wasn’t a success and has been largely dropped from AGs games.

I honestly feel that the way forward is in multi layered games which will allow you to progress through the logical and right decisions you have make in order to proceed. The game will allow for character development, far more interesting plots, and various paths to follow to reach the conclusion, plus the feeling that you are an actual part of the game as it unfolds.
Whether they will include puzzles as we know them, I don’t have any fixed views, but with or without them they, in my opinion, will be far more interesting to play.

The downside is that they will be more expensive to produce and to buy.



Edited by Carousal (05/29/08 09:14 AM)

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#335783 - 05/29/08 07:03 PM Re: Puzzle Madness [Re: Becky]
Gobobby Offline
Settled Boomer

Registered: 12/14/07
Posts: 272
Loc: New Mexico
Pretty close Becky. A problem, though, need not always require retention of previously learned data. In some cases, yes. Rather, solving a game problem requires several elements, data retention may be necesary to solve this problem but not another problem.

There are three distinguishing features of game puzzles. First, they are solved by trial and eror. No intelligence is required. You just plod along. Second, puzzles are immediately obvious. You see a maze in front of you, and you know that you must solve a maze puzzle. A problem may be more or less obvious, but it is not immediately obvious. Third, puzzles are not unique. Every problem is unique. The keypad on the wall is a keypad puzzle. The "tumbler" puzzle in "Still Life" is a keypad puzzle. In "Dead Reefs" you plunk some piano keys. It is a keypad puzzle.

Of course the averarching importance to gaming is that problems are an integal part of the game while puzzles are simply tacked on, usually as a substitute for story.
_________________________
The cleanest thing in your house is your cat

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#335824 - 05/29/08 08:05 PM Re: Puzzle Madness [Re: Gobobby]
Jenny100 Offline
GB Reviewer Glitches Moderator
Sonic Boomer

Registered: 10/24/00
Posts: 35203
Loc: southeast USA
I don't consider trial and error to be much of a puzzle at all. It's more a test of patience and lacks any real "puzzling." But when I do encounter trial and error it is usually in the form of figuring out who your character is supposed to talk to next or go next or do next in order to pull the trigger that will advance the plot. But what I've just described is the kind of thing you're calling a "problem" because it is advancing the plot.

IMO a puzzle is best solved by logic, whether it is to complete a standalone puzzle (like the ones in Shivers or Safecracker) or whether it is a puzzle that is more integrated with the plotline. To claim that one should be called a "problem" and the other a puzzle is arbitrarily imposing your personal preference on a definition. Where it might be acceptable to say a "problem" is a type of puzzle, I can't agree with saying one of the most common types of adventure game puzzle is no longer to be called a "puzzle" but must be called a "problem" instead.

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