Ludomedia #82

Ludomedia

Games media worth reading, watching or listening to.


Derek Yu: One More Run: The Making of ‘Spelunky 2’

  • “I think spiky games are often thought of as punishing, but to me the difficiulty, while it’s an important part of the design ethos, is in service of the goal rather than the goal itself. The real goal, I think, is to put the player into a state of focus about the game and to really care about what they’re doing at any given moment. It’s to make them feel like the world existed before they arrived and that it will exist after they leave. To make it feel real.”

JĂĽrgen “tante” Geuter: The Third Web

  • “The promise of the Internet of giving people access to information and potentially the power of publication is supposed to be replaced with an unregulated casino that literally burns our planet to the ground. I can hardly come up with anything this despicable. Nobody is an island but the Web3 crowd wants to further individualize us, turn everything about our digital and ideally analog selves into objects for speculation with semi-automated trading of assets replacing politics. The full financialization and depoliticization of life with no regard for the ecological consequences. This is not a utopian vision. This is a declaration of war against a lot of the political and social progress of the last decades.”

Keith Burgun: “Handicaps”, “Balanced Difficulty” and the one-player perspective

  • “There is a sense in which all games could be looked at as “1 player games”. When we play a game, we are always only playing from a single player’s perspective. We perceive things from just one perspective (our own, not our opponent’s), and we make choices for just one player (ourselves). In the case of highly systemic, deep strategy games, I argue that we not only can look at games as though they were all “1 player” games, but that we should. By doing so, we can focus on making players have a balanced difficulty, but it can also lead us away from rules that lead to “griefing”.”

Paul Butler: “Play-to-earn” and Bullshit Jobs

  • “Any sufficiently complex game will come to realize, as Axie Infinity has, that immutable property rights are at odds with the ability to counter abuse. Games that maximize property rights (as Axie Infinity wisely hasn’t) are bound to be overrun with cheaters and bots, which in turn will just bring down the value of in-game assets anyway. Ultimately, in-game labour is just a re-branding of gameplay designed to be dull enough that rich players will pay to outsource it to poor players. In spite of being presented as the future of work by some venture capitalists, the incentives just don’t make sense.”

Sanny Syberfeldt: Random Challenges

  • “I think having decisions be context-dependent is absolutely crucial for strategy game design, because that means if I get to the same type of decision situation multiple times […] then it will not be the same alternative that is the correct one in every situation, because the context is important enough to change which option I choose.”

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