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Game difficulty "gatekeeping" is bullshit, and here's why

ZlleH

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Dec 21, 2020
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It seems lately in GAF we getting lots complain about either graphics or difficulty and even both.

I’m start to think some of you guys want to just put the game in auto mode so you can concentrate on counting pixels.

They more than 1000 games with difficulty option, what so fucking wrong for other developers wanting making something different? I’m really, REALLY starting to get tried of this type threads.
You should re-read the original post. I think you might have gotten the wrong side the op is on.

It's understandable since the title is confusing as to what side he is on.
 

OmegaSupreme

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Apr 17, 2019
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A sock with lipstick around the elastic ring isn't a real woman any more than someone beating a game on easy is a real Gamer.
"real gamer" lmao. I'm sorry you're so...

nba GIF
 
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Ten_Fold

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What’s up with this generation of people wanting everything for everyone and just easy mode everything? Some games should be hard to finish because that’s what the devs wanted, in this era no game is actually that difficult including souls games because, well YOUTUBE lol, just get gud.
 
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RemyL

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What’s up with this generation of people wanting everything for everyone and just easy mode everything? Some games should be hard to finish because that’s what the devs wanted, in this era no game is actually that difficult including souls games because, well YOUTUBE lol, just get gud.
I agree with you. I'm not a great gamer, I'm just average. I have beaten some games that were deemed difficult by the public but I also can't beat Sekiro's last boss and I still sleep just fine. I'm not gonna ask for an easy mode though.
 
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OmegaSupreme

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What’s up with this generation of people wanting everything for everyone and just easy mode everything? Some games should be hard to finish because that’s what the devs wanted, in this era no game is actually that difficult including souls games because, well YOUTUBE lol, just get gud.
from software e3 GIF
 

THEAP99

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Nothing wrong with having an extremely hard game with no easy modes as well nothing wrong with having a game with very easy modes. Whatever fits the developers vision is how it should be and gamers shouldn't feel pressured and shamed by no-life gamers to beat games on a higher difficulty because ultimately it means nothing and doesn't help u get more women but instead just stresses u out and causes anger.
 
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GymWolf

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The only thing i have against people playing on easy is the fact that most games mechanics\combat systems only shine on the hardest difficulty level.

I'm not gonna waste my time having a discussion about sense of progression or combat system with a person who play on easy or normal because they just played a different game in most of the cases.

So it is much more a matter of me having pity for people who enjoy button smashing their way through instead of fully enjoying all the mechanics that a game has to offer more than me being mad because people are not good at videogames.

If you play on easy\normal you are only doing a disservice to yourself.

Other than that, i don't really give a fuck what difficulty mode people use, just don't force an easy mode in ever game, especially in modern times where even the majority of games are cakewalks even on hard, there is really no fucking need for that.
 
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OmegaSupreme

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The only thing i have against people playing on easy is the fact that most games mechanics\combat systems only shine on the hardest difficulty level.

I'm not gonna waste my time having a discussion about sense of progression or combat system with a person who play on easy or normal because they just played a different game in most of the cases.

So it is much more a matter of me having pity for people who enjoy button smashing their way through instead of fully enjoying all the mechanics that a game has to offer more than me being mad because people are not good at videogames.

If you play on easy\normal you are only doing a disservice to yourself.

Other than that, i don't really give a fuck what difficulty mode people use, just don't force an easy mode in ever game, especially in modern times where even the majority of games are cakewalks even on hard, there is really no fucking need for that.
Games are designed around "normal" difficulty. In countless games, it tells you that. So it's not a disservice in any way since that's the developer's intended setting.
 
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Cyborg

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Why even lock trophies/achievements behind difficulty? I find it bullshit, to be honest, I will never Platinum FF7R because of that while I did Platinum the newest R&C cause it was fair like it should be.
These things shouldn't be punishing but fun and a bit challenging
 
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Dlacy13g

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If you play on easy\normal you are only doing a disservice to yourself.
Oh I am sooooo tired of this argument. I get the sentiment trying to be stated but I fully believe you are are not doing a disservice to yourself if you actually get to finish the game and enjoy the story that was created. You actually are doing a service for yourself by completing the game you bought and not getting so frustrated because you are struggling with it that you stop playing it. If you have the mindset of "I want to beat the game on XYZ difficulty therefore I will try and get better ....great! That is what / why there are multiple settings. But the settings are also there because the developers actually want you to finish the game and see what they created. They give you the option TO USE THEM if you feel like you need to.

To each their own... But the reality is it doesn't matter one bit if some other person completes a game on any difficulty setting that is different than what you did.
 

GymWolf

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Games are designed around "normal" difficulty. In countless games, it tells you that. So it's not a disservice in any way since that's the developer's intended setting.
Lol, sure.

That's why in horizon on normal you can forget weak points, stealth, elemental weakness, placing traps etc because the game is super easy, maybe the devs are all a bunch of morons, putting so many mechanics in the game that the player doesn't need to use because you stomp enemies with ease on normal.

And this is valid for any combat system that it's not basic as fuck.

Watch a video of any dmc game on normal and then on max difficulty, they are literally different games.

Designed around normal is a fairytale that devs said to make some people in this topic feel better with themselfs.

And this comes from a guy who died exactly 346 times in surge 2, so not exactly a tournament ready gamer...

(On my defense 300 of those deaths were caused by me trying to get the 2.0 version weapon from every boss)
 
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GymWolf

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Oh I am sooooo tired of this argument. I get the sentiment trying to be stated but I fully believe you are are not doing a disservice to yourself if you actually get to finish the game and enjoy the story that was created. You actually are doing a service for yourself by completing the game you bought and not getting so frustrated because you are struggling with it that you stop playing it. If you have the mindset of "I want to beat the game on XYZ difficulty therefore I will try and get better ....great! That is what / why there are multiple settings. But the settings are also there because the developers actually want you to finish the game and see what they created. They give you the option TO USE THEM if you feel like you need to.

To each their own... But the reality is it doesn't matter one bit if some other person completes a game on any difficulty setting that is different than what you did.
Sure, if someone only play to see the art design or the story or the writing etc. I have absolutely nothing against playing on easy, these people were never really interested in the combat\game mechanics to begin with.

I'm shit with frenetic fps and i wanted to see the story of the second wolfenstein game so i played the game on a mix of hard and normal because at a certain point i was more interested in the story\characters than the game mechanics.
 
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Esppiral

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First world concerns.... and I beat every single game on easy difficulty, come at me you "pros" I like to enjoy games not get frustrated.
 
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OmegaSupreme

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Lol, sure.

That's why in horizon on normal you can forget weak points, stealth, elemental weakness, placing traps etc because the game is super easy, maybe the devs are all a bunch of morons, putting so many mechanics in the game that the player doesn't need to use because you stomp enemies with ease on normal.

And this is valid for any combat system that it's not basic as fuck.

Watch a video of any dmc game on normal and then on max difficulty, they are literally different games.

Designed around normal is a fairytale that devs said to make some people in this topic feel better with themselfs.

And this comes from a guy who died exactly 346 times in surge 2, so not exactly a tournament ready gamer...

(On my defense 300 of those deaths were caused by me trying to get the 2.0 version weapon from every boss)
You're a real gamer. I'm in awe over your accomplishments.
 

GymWolf

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You're a real gamer. I'm in awe over your accomplishments.
Don't get mad because you have no counterpoint dude, if i was proud about my videogame prowess i would never talk about the outrageous number of deaths i had in a game, you are talking with the wrong person here, i have no problems saying that i'm just above average and pretty shitty with a lof of genres.
 

OmegaSupreme

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Don't get mad because you have no counterpoint dude, if i was proud about my videogame prowess i would never talk about the outrageous number of deaths i had in a game, you are talking with the wrong person here, i have no problems saying that i'm just above average and pretty shitty with a lof of genres.
What you stated was nonsense. No need for a counterpoint. I'm glad you feel good about playing games on hard. I dont have that hang up. I'm not being cheated of the experience even in the slightest.
 
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Shubh_C63

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I still think I enjoyed Tlou1 more on Easy than on Normal.

having said that, I wouldn't wish Bloodborne with an easy difficulty on my worst enemy.
One game One difficulty, is king.
 

GymWolf

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What you stated was nonsense. No need for a counterpoint. I'm glad you feel good about playing games on hard. I dont have that hang up. I'm not being cheated of the experience even in the slightest.
How is that nonsense when i even listed some examples?!

Another more clear example, days gone, the devs always talked about their game being difficult, always feeling in danger etc., The motto of the game was "the world comes for you".

On normal you can fight 10 zombies with the boot knife, the unbreakable starting melee weapon, try that on hard 2 or survival and you are dead meat in 20 seconds.

Now, what do you think was the experience that the days gone devs wanted for the players?!

But i guess this is nonsense too and devs don't even know what they want...
 
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Neilg

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On normal you can fight 10 zombies with the boot knife, the unbreakable starting melee weapon, try that on hard 2 or survival and you are dead meat in 20 seconds.

The entire point where your argument falls apart is right here.

YOU can do that without feeling in danger because you have spent longer playing and practicing games. for some people, they feel in danger and overwhelmed on normal. The purpose of difficulty settings is to allow people to tweak the game to their experience level - and the devs recommend finding a level where the game makes them feel like they are in danger.
 

GymWolf

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The entire point where your argument falls apart is right here.

YOU can do that without feeling in danger because you have spent longer playing and practicing games. for some people, they feel in danger and overwhelmed on normal. The purpose of difficulty settings is to allow people to tweak the game to their experience level - and the devs recommend finding a level where the game makes them feel like they are in danger.
Agree to disagree, the game didn't even had a normal/easy mode until the last year of development, the devs originally wanted a difficult game for everyone, you can find devs interviews about that, sony probably pushed for an easy/normal mode to get more people to buy the game.

And how about the other examples?! You can literally forget a lot of game mechanics while playing on easy or normal, how is that the devs vision when they put these mechanics in the game to begin with?!

Sorry, you are never gonna convince me that devs like to waste times putting mechanics over mechanics that people never gonna use while playing on easy, it goes against logic.
 
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Neilg

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Jun 17, 2021
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And how about the other examples?! You can literally forget a lot of game mechanics while playing on easy or normal, how is that the devs vision when they put these mechanics in the game to begin with?!

Sorry, you are never gonna convince me that devs like to waste times putting mechanics over mechanics that people never gonna use while playing on easy, it goes against logic.

Again, this is your experience.
Your argument all comes down to 'because my experience playing the game on this difficulty is this, that must be the same for everyone'

I dont think devs see it as wasted time. AAA games have a lot of time and money spent on the narrative, mocap, set pieces. If they tune the difficulty high for people like you to start with (because it doesn't make sense to go in the other direction) and then simplify it so that people with little to no experience playing games can enjoy it like a blockbuster movie, who's being hurt? Do you actually think this is taking away a measurable amount of dev time from more important things?
 
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GymWolf

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Again, this is your experience.
Your argument all comes down to 'because my experience playing the game on this difficulty is this, that must be the same for everyone'

I dont think devs see it as wasted time. AAA games have a lot of time and money spent on the narrative, mocap, set pieces. If they tune the difficulty high for people like you to start with (because it doesn't make sense to go in the other direction) and then simplify it so that people with little to no experience playing games can enjoy it like a blockbuster movie, who's being hurt? Do you actually think this is taking away a measurable amount of dev time from more important things?
Can we continue in a couple of hours? Right now i'm at work and i really hate writing long posts on my smartphone.
 

Danjin44

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You should re-read the original post. I think you might have gotten the wrong side the op is on.

It's understandable since the title is confusing as to what side he is on.
I’m mostly talking overall, we getting lots of topics about difficulty in games.
 

MaDBrute

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That's one hell of an essay brother!

The Olympics comparison is extremely weak. Because if 2 ppl complete a game, one on easy one on hard they have a lot more in common than someone who runs a 10 second 100m and a 5min 100m. The reason for this is the essence of the game remains the same across difficulties unless it was specifically designed otherwise. This is called game design.

There arent many games where difficulty (or lack thereof) is essential to the game experience. Souls being a prime example, where high difficulty is baked in to the experience, making it easy makes the design fundamentally different.

Your other misconception is that playing a game on harder difficulty makes you 'better', which is honestly kinda laughable. Difficulty is a choice with many factors at play. My friend ALWAYS plays on the hardest difficulty because he LOVES the challenge AND the bragging rights, he is certainly not 'better' at games than me. We can discuss the games in depth because the mechanics, gameplay, story etc are the same. The main difference is that it just takes him longer to finish games than me meaning I end up playing more game than him.

I just finished my first run on hades at 7 heat as another friend just beat it for the first time. We spent hours talking about the game and the difference in difficulty disnt stunt the conversation once. People who complete games on super hard difficulty and want a pat on the back are pretty sad imo.

Unless difficulty is baked into the experience then all games should be as accessible as possible imo. Ppl who want Sekiro to have an easy mode and equally as sad as ppl who think they are 'better' than others for completing on a high difficulty.
They are better at 'the game' then others, just like everything else in life, you master it through practice and repetition.
 

meernakh

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May 26, 2021
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I relish the tought, that one day, down the line. My grandson comes to visit me in my retirement castle. “Grandpa” he’ll say. I just cant beat this game and i already have the game on super easy!. I know that you learned the craft in a different time. Please, can you help me out.

My artrittis ridden hands clamp down on the controller. My sight, so bad, i can barely see the screen. I beat the level first try. A tear runs down my grandson’s face.

it will be like me talking with my granddad about the war. Without the casualties but sorta similar still.

so make everything accessable and easy, so i can compete on my deathbed!
 
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I'm all for more options and accessibility. Let people play games how they want. It should be about enjoyment at the end of the day. Personally I always play on the default normal difficulty. I don't care for the extra challenge but I dont want it so easy that it plays itself.
 
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Kurd o Azadi

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i didnt read any of that tbh, but i think if game developers care they would add more than 2 ending to thier games, based on difficulty, this what i would do atleast, but why do all the extra work if the purpose is the same?
 

Tiamat2san

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I, now, play almost every game on easy difficulty.
I don’t need a challenge to overcome to have fun playing it (maybe it’s even the opposite now) .
I am happy like this, I prefer to play a ton of games quickly than a few perfectly.

if you like hard games , good for you, I used to be like this. Maybe it’s my fading skills and lack of patience for these things as time went by. Don’t know. But now it’s game binging.

i totally agree with the tweet, if you beat a game on easy, you beat the game.
Even if it’s not the ultimate « experience » of a « true » gamer.
In the end, the only important thing is to have fun while playing it.
 
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ReBurn

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I haven't cared whether someone was better than me at video games since I was in the 7th grade. Do people really care if someone else finishes a game on a lower difficulty setting?
 
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Airola

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Learn to love video games even if you can't beat the game.

It's that simple and the whole world of gaming will be much more enjoyable for you.
 

Virt McPolygon

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I play on easy more often than on hard myself. The piling on of social media pandering for points is kinda disgusting though. Is that bothered? Maybe, I dunno. It feels more like maximum cheesiness instead.

Jimmy Fallon Love GIF by The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon
Brands do tend to hire people with top cheese and obnoxious skills for social media.

But yeah, I don't think more difficulty options lessen single player games. But I think it's also okay to promote easier difficulties in response to games promoting the opposite. Depends on the tone, really. They're just games!
 
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Duchess

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This sort of thing is inevitable as gaming becomes much more mainstream and strives to be more inclusive.

It needs to be for everyone, and if that means allowing someone to toggle the option to become invulnerable or one-shot all the enemies in the game, that's something that's going to happen.

EDIT: I can see this becoming something people do for a while, before the bullying and harassment against people who enable such cheats makes people steer clear of said toggles. When I was at school in the 90s, people would be ridiculed for playing DOOM with iddqd enabled.
 
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GymWolf

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This sort of thing is inevitable as gaming becomes much more mainstream and strives to be more inclusive.

It needs to be for everyone, and if that means allowing someone to toggle the option to become invulnerable or one-shot all the enemies in the game, that's something that's going to happen.

EDIT: I can see this becoming something people do for a while, before the bullying and harassment against people who enable such cheats makes people steer clear of said toggles. When I was at school in the 90s, people would be ridiculed for playing DOOM with iddqd enabled.
Why this shit doesn't happen with movies tho?! You still have a fuckton of movies for a restricted circle of people and nobody is gonna tell the director to make the film for everyone...

The future is bleak if every developer need to knee to the no-hands crowd...
 

TheDreadLord

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The main advantage of playing at higher difficulties is that the game forces you to use all the systems in place. The downside is that the more you know the most likely is that you will also find a way to cheesy your way through. So, if you are not interested in use all the mechanics then just go for the normal or easy difficulties.
 
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chonga

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What’s up with this generation of people wanting everything for everyone and just easy mode everything? Some games should be hard to finish because that’s what the devs wanted, in this era no game is actually that difficult including souls games because, well YOUTUBE lol, just get gud.
There's a difference between people asking for easy modes in particular titles and what a fair amount of people in this thread are doing which is saying that easy modes should never exist.

As you say, if a dev wants a game to be hard, then so be it. But if a dev wants it to be accessible or easy then the same rules should apply.
 

ZywyPL

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Why this shit doesn't happen with movies tho?! You still have a fuckton of movies for a restricted circle of people and nobody is gonna tell the director to make the film for everyone...

The future is bleak if every developer need to knee to the no-hands crowd...

Yeah, I don't understand the "I don't really like it but I want to be a part of it, so change it for me" mentality gamers have nowadays, like they cannot accept that not everything is for everyone, if you don't find something appealing just skip it altogether and go find something else that does suit your taste, there are thousands of games to choose from, literally.

I'm not a fan of Souls-like game, and that's fine, but there's an audience who absolutely adores them for what they are, so why the hell the devs should change anything? The end effect would be like with BF5, where the devs pissed off their dedicated fanbase while trying to interest people who were never into their games anyway, and instead of expanding the audience they reached the all time low playerbase.

Bottom line is, there isn't a greater scenario than a developer making the type of games he absolutely loves to make, and an audience who absolutely adores his work, this should never be forced to change.
 

Duchess

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Why this shit doesn't happen with movies tho?!
I'll confess that off the top of my head, I can't think of any examples, but I imagine you'll find a lot of book-to-movie translations have dumbed things down, to make it more appealing and accessible to the wider audience.

Dune is coming up soon, so it'll be interesting to see what changes have been made there (I know that "jihad" is now "crusade", and Baron Harkonnen is no longer "queer")
 
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-Minsc-

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What I can say is I either never had the talent for mad gamer skillz or I gave up developing them.
 

Relativ9

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They're an American company, they come from the land of "everybody is special" and participation medals (most of the west is lik this, but the US in particular), hardly surprising MS touts this ideology.
 
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Comment for GoW director on this:

I like Cory as a person and he's a great director, but this is simplistic imo.
If I climb a mountain and I get to the top, all sweaty and roughed up, then seeing people on the summit in high heels taking selfies who have taken a trainride up there does affect my enjoyment. This is also not a made up scenario. :)
 

Nico_D

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If I climb a mountain and I get to the top, all sweaty and roughed up, then seeing people on the summit in high heels taking selfies who have taken a trainride up there does affect my enjoyment.

Really? I find that interesting. Why does it have that effect on you? You still did it your way, you had a personal goal and you achieved that - why the way others do it takes away your own achievement?

I think the goal here was the method and not the top.
 
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