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Are Telltale listening to the complaints about the difficulty-level of their games?

posted by Incognito on - last edited - Viewed by 6.9K users

I haven´t finished the first episode myself yet, but every text you read about the game contains the same pros and cons: Absolutely wonderful presentation, but is soooo easy. Which is the same response the Bone-games got.

Are Telltale listening to this critic, or will the coming episodes have the same diffculty-level?

I´m playing Broken Sword 4 now at the same time, and that is one game that really requires one to think, and adds some very neat minigames and puzzles. Maybe that game can be a source of inspiration for Telltale, to raise the quality of their games from "really good" to "downright excellent"? :)

346 Comments - Linear Discussion: Classic Style
  • Trimming puzzles from an episodic game is counter productive. There's little enough to do anyway.

    Best way to ramp up difficulty would be;

    1. Inventory combination puzzles (eg. having to find ammo for the tear gas launcher)
    2. Extra steps in puzzles (eg. needing to find a key to open closet in office)
    3. Have Max give hints to make harder puzzles passable for novice palyers (this was done in Bone).
    4. Have option to turn off automatic cursor, and use right button to cycle look/interact/walk. I'm always accidentally clicking my right-button where my fingers rest and accidentally skipping dialogue.

  • @numble said: There are some people that can beat Super Mario in 10 minutes, but that doesn't mean Nintendo should make an easy/hard mode, or make the game harder for those players.


    First of all, people do not beat Super Mario Bros in 10 minutes the first time they play the game, and secondly to reach that time you have to use alot of short cuts. The game does take more time to clear if you play all the levels, the content is there if you opt for the full experience. So it is kind of a moot point.

    Also you might remember that Nintendo did in fact include a series of harder levels in Super Mario World called "Special World". And just recently, in New Super Mario Bros on the DS, Nintendo included a special challenge mode that turns off backtracking on levels to make it more challenging.

    I'm tired of being spoonfed when it comes to difficulty, or lack thereof. I paid for the game too, don't I have a say in what's "just about right"?

  • I agree. Puzzles were too simple. And it was very linear. I felt like I was watching TV; not that I don’t like watching Sam and Max, but really I was expecting more oomph.

    Any experienced adventure gamer will tell you about that feeling you got when the next monkey island *JUST CAME OUT* and you just sat down to play it. Explore, and enjoy, and start nibbling away at some of the easier puzzles. Well that lasted about 15 seconds with culture shock.

    Initially upon competition I felt relatively satisfied, but after thinking about it a little more, really this was entirely due to the fact this is Sam and Max. The actual quality of the adventure wasn’t really very good. Very entertaining, as Sam and Max always are, but it definitely lacked the feel of an early 90’s Lucas arts adventure game.

    Set your sights for one of these three: Monkey island 3, Day of the tentacle, or Grim Fandango. They were all quite different interface wise but they all had the correct feel of an adventure game. Freedom, hard puzzles… a game which keeps you up at night… a game with atmosphere… a game with character… a game with oomph.

  • I'm just a subscriber to Old Man Murray's theory for the death of adventure games. If only targeting hard core adventure gamers was enough to make adventure games successful, Lucasarts and Sierra would still be churning out those babies left and right. Many of those games tried to implement both hard and easy modes, but the market still didn't bite. There's a certain innate skill set hard-wired into experienced adventure gamers that isn't in all gamers. An example would be the look-at/pick-up response in the old games--almost everything you looked at you would also try to pick up, but even that isn't hard-wired into inexperienced gamers. A podcast I listened to discussed one such problem with Sam and Max Hit The Road, where nobody would ever expect to tell Sam to "pick up" the mousehole, and thus would never know where to get money from. Culture Shock simplifies this because looking at things and picking up things are the same command.

    I do expect the episodes to be more difficult in the future, but people should not expect the extremely difficult and complex puzzles of the past--use paper cup with golf ball retriever and make a bungee rope with twine so that you can bungee jump with it to retrieve a piece of tar.

    If you want adventure games to be continued to be made, you need them to be successful. For them to be successful, there needs to be certain changes made to engage with a wider audience. It may be a sharp razor to swallow, but it's true.

  • That's sad, I was mortified when realizing all I needed to make the helmet was the "antenna."
    That was ridiculous. But I liked the whole psychotherapist part. I think it was the best puzzle.

    Now, there must be a way of pleasing casual gamers (the Market...) and adventurers. It can be MORE difficult without having to write "DJ bring sekey madoule" on a tombstone ;)

  • My problem with having no difficult puzzles is this:
    I am unashamedly RUBBISH at solving puzzles. What I enjoy is the story, and actually seeing the solutions to the puzzles. If I CAN work out a puzzle, alrighty; but if I can't, and I look up a walkthrough, I can still marvel at the insane logic of whoever designed this, and I can enjoy the outcome. Of course if a puzzle is hard because it's NOT logical, I get no enjoyment; if it's logical but I couldn't figure it out, I still get enjoyment. If the puzzle is so easy I can just do it straight away, I also get no enjoyment, and the end result is just not as wacky (the reward for solving a hard puzzle in HtR was a funny scene or just a really good animation which is funny in itself, plus story advancement and often new locations.)

    However I think that it's right to start out this easy. Train up those who have just picked up the game and haven't been conditioned to pick up every object, and then in later games, get them thinking.

  • I don't buy that argument numble.. I think people who arent in your "hardcore adventure gamer demographic" would just as much like a challenge as the rest of us.. Why is everyone so afraid to force people to think about situations a little bit?

    I think the easy/difficult mode would not be that hard to implement either.. in easy mode you use gas launcher.. set it to difficult and you cant just use it you must find ammo to use etc etc using jps example.

  • @Hero1 said: I don't buy that argument numble.. I think people who arent in your "hardcore adventure gamer demographic" would just as much like a challenge as the rest of us.. Why is everyone so afraid to force people to think about situations a little bit?



    The risk is too high that new players who aren't used to adventure games will get stuck on a puzzle, then just abandon the game on a shelf because it's "too hard." And then of course they won't play any other of the episodes or any other adventure games maybe.

    Some people get angry when they feel they aren't "smart enough" for a game, so even if they look up a walkthrough they're likely to just resent it and feel, not that they didn't get the puzzle, but that THE PUZZLE WAS WRONG. and so on...

  • I think the people that would enjoy the difficulty would far outweigh those that would be turned off by it.. you would get 95% very high rated reviews.. you would get really strong word of mouth..

  • As has been said, Telltale need to attract a new audience with these games in order to survive. If that means starting the series fairly easy to hook and 'train' new players, so be it. Most games have an easier 'training' level or two at the start. As that isn't an option in a game as short as Sam & Max, then one could expect the difficulty to increase in each subsequent episode.

    Just look at the difficulty level in Out From Boneville (BONE 1) compared to the Graet Cow Race (BONE 2).

    I have every confidence the difficulty and wackiness will increase as the season progresses.

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