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    Hard Decisions…

    Posted by
    August 26th, 2012 7:36 am

    So, I have about 34 hours left in the jam. Some of you may have seen what my game looks like so far, this is it:

    Progress thus far

    The game is a town building sim where you can buy buildings which produce more money for you, allowing for even more buildings.

    The thing is, there’s no difficulty. You can just build forever. And in some ways that can be a good thing (look at Minecraft Creative), but on the other hand, a bit of challenge makes everything more fun (look at, well, Minecraft Survival.) Adding difficulty, though, will be hard. I could try to make some form of enemy raid but it might not be the best plan; perhaps I should just continue to polish.

    So what do you think?

    One Response to “Hard Decisions…”

    1. FuzzYspo0N says:

      I have been studying management games a whole bunch, what makes these games interesting, from what I understand, is meaningful PLAYER choices. If i build now, i wont be able to build until much later. Difficulty can come from the player decisions to build at all.

      This means has to serve something that is both of benefit, and of negative feedback (down sides) to the decision. This puts the weight on the decisions themselves, which if you want, can make it really difficult for the player.

      Think of the difficulty as exclusion. In tropico for example, building a Logging House to cut trees makes the environmentalists upset. If you have upset environmentalists they can blockade your factories and those factories stop producing money.
      The cause : Logging
      The effect : Factory downtime of one of your exports

      I am not saying add all these complexities, but while building is intrinsically fun, you might want to add more weight to each building decision first, possibly excluding a bunch of options at all. If you have a , and are no longer available… If you build a mine, you can no longer have a farm because the mining dust ruins the crops. If you build a farm, no mine. If you build a shopping mall, the number of houses you are allowed to build is halved, because people dont like the noise. If you build too many houses, you can no longer place a shopping mall.

      Difficulty in management games like these specifically, USUALLY come from both time management (making sure you are being efficient and making decisions quickly), and resource management (make sure you are earning enough before you start building other stuff, or else run out of money). The third component I would say is player decision, for each decision they could be adding complexity (time management) and costing a fixed drain (you lose money once a month per house).

      So, drains (ways to lose money) are important to difficulty, but its a tricky thing to balance if you have many sub types..

      Apologies for the wall of text but I hope it helps in some/any way.

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