quarta-feira, 11 de março de 2015

High level of difficulty as a game design component

Dark Souls, Demons Souls, Lords of the Fallen and even the simple mobile game Flappy Bird have one thing in common: a challenging gameplay with a high level of difficulty. Destined to a specific kind of player, this type of game invites to a deeper gameplay experience.

Another game that suits as an example for this discussion is PHASES: INFINITE ZERO (Ketchapp, US, 2014). In this game, you command a small ball to the left and to the right, trying to escape from every black piece on the interface. Check the gameplay below:

A ludic experiment like PHASES puts the idea of procedural rhetoric in another landing place. As Bogost says (2007, p.3) “just as verbal rhetoric is useful for both the orator and the audience, and just as written rhetoric is useful for both the writer and the reader, procedural rhetoric is useful for both the programmer and the user, the game designer and the player”.

We discussed about anxiety as a game design component in another post. The subject of this post complements this idea and gives us some new ways to think about gaming creative processes, and teaches us how to work bad feelings in a ludic way.


BOGOST, Ian. Persuasive Games: The Expressive Power of Videogames. MIT Press, 2007.

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