• Hey, guest user. Hope you're enjoying NeoGAF! Have you considered registering for an account? Come join us and add your take to the daily discourse.
  • The Politics forum has been nuked. Please do not bring political discussion to the rest of the site, or you will be removed. Thanks.

Games should not have easy, normal and hard mode.

Difficulty selection on games


  • Total voters
    126

Vaelka

Member
Apr 1, 2019
687
951
460
People who say that Dark Souls need an easy mode need to shut their fucking traps, and it already has a way to increase the difficulty.
I'd actually argue that Dark Souls already has an easy mode too, it's called builds. There's builds in the game that makes the game way easier an actual easy mode on top of it too isn't needed people just need to not be braindead.

Most games I think benefit from difficulty modes tho.
But I think that when a game is specifically built in a certain way like the Souls series then no..
 

Madflavor

Member
Jul 27, 2018
909
1,862
435
Doing this would alienate a large portion of people who wouldn't be able to experience good portions of the game because they're no good enough. The philosophy of "git gud" is just an asshole statement to make, because believe it or not there are some people out there that just can't get good. Maybe theyadore gaming but just aren't great at it, maybe they have a handicap, or maybe they're super limited on time and can't commit to getting good. This is why Easy options should exist. Not for EVERY game, I understand there are some games out there where their difficulty is a selling point.

Not to mention no difficulty settings could hurt replay value for those who want to replay games on more challenging difficulties.
 
Last edited:

INCUBASE

Member
Jan 8, 2018
6,100
12,693
720
Ai scaled difficulty option would be cool, so the better you get the harder the game gets

As long as it was an extra 'option', some people like difficult games, and some games scaling is horrific

Take GoT, by the time I got to the 3rd part fo the map I was basically invincible, if it had scaled AI difficulty would of made the game more interesting or the final 3rd of the game
 
D

Deleted member 801069

Unconfirmed Member
not all people are equal bro
 
Last edited by a moderator:
  • Like
Reactions: Hostile_18

Arcadia88

Member
Apr 2, 2020
331
240
250
Git gud should only apply to online games playing in teams with other humans. It should not apply to me against the computer. The computer is there to cater to me and my wants and needs. If I want a challenge then give me a challenge. If I want to smell the roses then give me roses.
 

gamerguywashere

Neophyte
Aug 3, 2020
385
424
280
portland, or
Let's be honest this is all about gatekeeping only the hardcore should enjoy games. It was a popular mindset when I was a kid in the 80s-90s with gamers.

I dunno if it was a gamer mindset, or a capitalist endeavor.

I remember when we got an NES...the most bestest thing to me was you could play videogames without quarters. The SAME (heh) games!

after consoles, difficulty relaxed


now quarters are back, but mostly for outfits...mostly

how long till pay per life makes a comeback?...
 

T-Cake

Member
May 28, 2019
1,467
1,825
440
I tend to play on whatever the hardest difficulty is to get the trophy for it. If there's no trophy for difficulty (or I'm playing on PC) I will play on the easiest difficulty. I want to relax not tear my hair out.
 

Keihart

Member
Jun 23, 2013
5,121
3,524
775
I read the OP. Obviously, based on my comment, I made it to the end.

Whether an individual person likes difficulty levels or not in their game is an argument to be had. Suggesting that difficulty levels keeps people OUT of games, I can't understand that. At least people who are less skilled, have the opportunity to get into the game, become familiar, and eventually upgrade to a higher difficulty level if they wish. By the same token, if you play through a game on normal and feel like a master by the end, you can up it for a greater challenge if you wish.

Sure, the developers might have an ideal way to play the game "correctly" in mind, but dude it's a GAME. It's about fun. I would rather my 7 year old niece be able to play at all, than to be left out because "git gud son".
I'll quote myself from the OP.
A portion of your player base select the wrong difficulty for their level of skill, making them lose interest in the game because it's either too easy or too hard for them while a small portion finds the right one and calls it a good challenge.



TLDR; Selecting difficulty from a menu sucks balls and keeps players out of your games.
It's not about games being harder or easy, it's about games offering a fitting challenging experiences for their target audience, when a games it's too easy or too hard, players will disengage with the game. I'm arguing that when developers give you the option in a menu at any time, they are keeping the players unable to grasp how the game works at first sight out of them because they will disengage eventually.

Challenge in games comes in all forms too, not just mechanically or even by failure states. Getting your ideal ending in a graphic novel or getting a high score can also be considered part of the challenge. I'm not arguing about taking the difficulty of existing games, but that designing games without that crutch would result in better games, be it easier or harder, the dev would have to commit to it.
 

Keihart

Member
Jun 23, 2013
5,121
3,524
775
Ai scaled difficulty option would be cool, so the better you get the harder the game gets

As long as it was an extra 'option', some people like difficult games, and some games scaling is horrific

Take GoT, by the time I got to the 3rd part fo the map I was basically invincible, if it had scaled AI difficulty would of made the game more interesting or the final 3rd of the game
GOD hand kinda does this, but even when you are trash the game it's crushing difficult at times. Classic Clover/Platinum genius that it's always so close to perfection but no cigar.

 
  • Strength
  • Like
Reactions: RedVIper and Jeeves

G-Bus

Member
Aug 20, 2007
3,175
728
1,355
Canada
The developer should have the default difficulty setting where they more or less designed the game around.

Maybe someone that doesn't want to deal with the difficulty and just wants to relax and play through would go for easy, and people that like those souls type games where you need some muscle memory and die a lot go for hard.

See no reason to alienate group of people and potentially hurt sales. Although I guess the souls series and the like have disproven this.
 
Nov 22, 2019
411
732
305
Im a fan of letting devs design their games as they want. If a dev wants their game to be hard, and you want it to be easy, you should move on to something else. It works the other way too, FF15 is a cool game but mindlessly easy to the point of boredom, I can choose to appreciate what it is or I can fuck off. I wouldn't want it any other way. Good on the dev if they can balance their game for everyone, not everyone can and not every dev wants to.
 
Last edited:

Dogman

Member
Sep 25, 2020
168
619
265
Most games are balanced around the normal - hard difficulties anyway. Nothing wrong with having the option above and below those for those that want the extra challenge or dont want to think too hard sometimes
 

Ridaxan

Member
Dec 29, 2015
239
139
365
Cape Town
Sometimes I want to be challenged and I'll up the difficulty level i.e. DooM Eternal.

Other times I can't really be too bothered with the gameplay and I will cheese through it in EZ mode i.e. TLOU2.

The more choices available the better, but ultimately the default difficulty should be what the core gameplay flow is balanced around.

Ultimately though, I'm happy with whatever the developers are happy with.
 
Last edited:

Danjin44

The nicest person on this forum
Mar 22, 2017
16,171
25,735
1,075
It’s up to developers if they want to include difficulty option or not.
 

Digital Gex

Banned
Feb 20, 2019
1,041
2,325
500
Better than Mega Man Legends where you have to beat Normal mode to unlock Hard Mode, which you have to beat to unlock Easy mode making the whole thing pointless.
 

OutRun88

Member
Jun 12, 2020
1,290
2,688
385
The whole point of a difficulty setting is to allow a wider range of players enjoy your game.

Difficulty and challenge isn’t a one size fits all.
 
  • Love
Reactions: Hostile_18

Digital Gex

Banned
Feb 20, 2019
1,041
2,325
500
That’s the system I hate the most

A bunch of japanese shooters and run guns did that a lot in the 90's and early 2000's. Never made sense.

Then there are the ones that spawn numerous genres, that make it so you lose levels or don't get the "real ending" or BOTH if you don't beat the game on hard or higher (sometimes Normal or higher but not often)
 

Yselacrey00

Member
Nov 20, 2018
755
1,061
510
Disagree, every game should have several difficulty options. What they should so though is to only allow you to select easy or normal at first and then unlock more difficulties after you finish the game. That way no one could make that lame excuse of "oh you had to play it on hard".
 

Eternal21

Member
Nov 14, 2013
329
701
580
Haven't trophies/achievements solved that problem? Have easy mode for people that don't care, and only unlock trophies on hard difficulty.
 
  • Thoughtful
Reactions: Bankai
Jul 13, 2020
325
620
320
Difficulty sliders can be good, but by the same token, they really seem to be disguised difficulty settings. What's the big difference between 1 and very easy versus 10 and very hard? Nomenclature.

The biggest issues I see are

1. the lack of intuitiveness in describing said difficulty. Being told easy mode is "a game mode for casuals or people not very used to [insert genre] games," is redundant. Does my health regenerate? Are there more checkpoints? Do I take less damage/deal more damage? Do enemies have less HP/tweaked AI? A little bit of knowledge would go a long way in determining which setting applies to which player.

2. Changing difficulty mid-game. Now, this is a problem that's mostly disappeared, but certain games hold fast to it. Kingdom Hearts even tells you which difficulty you've picked in your settings menu, which logistically implies you can change it if it's too easy/challenging, only to be met with a message that states "difficulty cannot be changed once the game has started," Like...why even have it there, then?
 

Keihart

Member
Jun 23, 2013
5,121
3,524
775
Difficulty sliders can be good, but by the same token, they really seem to be disguised difficulty settings. What's the big difference between 1 and very easy versus 10 and very hard? Nomenclature.

The biggest issues I see are

1. the lack of intuitiveness in describing said difficulty. Being told easy mode is "a game mode for casuals or people not very used to [insert genre] games," is redundant. Does my health regenerate? Are there more checkpoints? Do I take less damage/deal more damage? Do enemies have less HP/tweaked AI? A little bit of knowledge would go a long way in determining which setting applies to which player.

2. Changing difficulty mid-game. Now, this is a problem that's mostly disappeared, but certain games hold fast to it. Kingdom Hearts even tells you which difficulty you've picked in your settings menu, which logistically implies you can change it if it's too easy/challenging, only to be met with a message that states "difficulty cannot be changed once the game has started," Like...why even have it there, then?
There are some extremes too, for example, i really like TLoU2, but difficulty got mixed with accessibility in that game and you can make the game into a joke. Everything that could feel like a challenge can be turned off, you can make yourself invisible, make the AI dumber, have more or less resources, give yourself some bullet time, the list goes on and on. This is all in addition to the selected difficulty which it's modified by all this sliders, it's kinda like having a trainer in game options.
 

Mista

Banned
Nov 21, 2014
20,416
35,344
1,420
A bunch of japanese shooters and run guns did that a lot in the 90's and early 2000's. Never made sense.

Then there are the ones that spawn numerous genres, that make it so you lose levels or don't get the "real ending" or BOTH if you don't beat the game on hard or higher (sometimes Normal or higher but not often)
Yeah I remember those man. Its dumb. Its like they’re forcing you to play multiple times just for options you should have right off the beginning
 

Hydroxy

Member
May 1, 2020
261
193
300
The more the difficulty options the better. I just started playing P4G on Easy difficulty. I just want a comfortable experience without getting frustrated.
 

Airola

Member
Jun 25, 2015
5,543
5,254
700
Finland
The whole point of a difficulty setting is to allow a wider range of players enjoy your game.

You can say that about all kinds of design choices though.
Resident Evil 6 became what it is because they the game to be enjoyed by a wider range of players.
Sometimes wanting to cater to too many people ends up making a game that many might like but no-one loves, and even more hates. (obviously there are people who love RE6 too but you get the point)
 
  • Thoughtful
Reactions: Keihart

The_Mike

Member
Nov 5, 2017
4,937
7,869
640
Denmark
How I read ops post:

I'm a cool edgy emo kid with no kids and wide so I can spend 3000 hours learn to fight a boss and everyone should enjoy it like that as well.

No op. Shame on you.
 

eot

Banned
Apr 13, 2012
12,804
4,706
895
Lol just ridiculous. I don’t see how having a lower difficulty affects you. So stupid.
It affects you because it's very hard to design a game around multiple difficulty levels, and most devs don't do a good job at it.
 

Tranquil

Member
Jul 5, 2019
1,079
1,994
430
I like having options, so I appreciate it when I see Easy, Normal and Hard.

99.9% of the time I choose Normal though.
 
  • Like
Reactions: quest

OutRun88

Member
Jun 12, 2020
1,290
2,688
385
You can say that about all kinds of design choices though.
Resident Evil 6 became what it is because they the game to be enjoyed by a wider range of players.
Sometimes wanting to cater to too many people ends up making a game that many might like but no-one loves, and even more hates. (obviously there are people who love RE6 too but you get the point)
Can you name some of these design choices

I am not familiar with RE6.

Either way my point still stands that difficulty isn’t a one size fits all. Adding difficulty settings doesn’t alienate anyone. Normal can be viewed as how difficult the developers intend the game to be for most people’s optimal experience.

I fail to see how allowing that to be adjusted can make a game any less lovable.

As a matter of fact, it has the opposite effect from experience. For example, the Legendary difficulty on Halo makes the game even better than it already is.
 
Last edited:

RedVIper

Banned
Jun 13, 2017
2,998
4,182
465
For gameplay focused games I agree.

I think dificulty options in games like tlou are fine because half the people are only playing for the story.
 

Keihart

Member
Jun 23, 2013
5,121
3,524
775
How I read ops post:

I'm a cool edgy emo kid with no kids and wide so I can spend 3000 hours learn to fight a boss and everyone should enjoy it like that as well.

No op. Shame on you.
No reading comprehension then. I clearly, but obviously not clearly enough for you, state in the OP that having a menu with difficulty options has 2 unwanted outcomes, making games too easy or too hard for different people, while only a small portion gets the third outcome of selecting the right one for them.
 

Enjay

Member
Feb 18, 2009
3,043
2,318
1,125
Of all of the idiotic, dumb posts I have read on Neogaf, this is one of them.
Agreed. I'm adding you to my ignore list for posting it.
No reading comprehension then. I clearly, but obviously not clearly enough for you, state in the OP that having a menu with difficulty options has 2 unwanted outcomes, making games too easy or too hard for different people, while only a small portion gets the third outcome of selecting the right one for them.
You can really tell who breaks their controllers in this thread.
 
Last edited:

Hostile_18

Banned
Jun 7, 2015
4,663
4,945
770
UK
The only people who don't want a difficulty option are those gamers who are really good at games and want to gate keep the content from others so it makes them feel better about themselves and their elite skills.

They will come back with "but options will ruin the experience the devs have intended". Maybe it will not be the optimal way to play for some users but you know what's less optimal? Not been able to play the game at friggin all.

Every gamer is different. What is "easy" for one is an insurmountable challenge for another. Perhaps if Sekiro had an easy mode after someone has done that they will have the confidence to try a medium mode, rather than jumping in straight at the deep end.

It's a sign of a maturing medium that everyone who has the wish to play a game can. Your normal/hard modes are still there for those gamers skilled enough. Don't deny someone else an experience, because they have lesser skills than yourself. Everyone is here to be entertained at the end of the day and paying an equal amount of money.
 
S

SLoWMoTIoN

Unconfirmed Member
Difficulty is only a state of mind in videogames.
 
Apr 4, 2017
398
841
385
I completely agree with you. Games should be built with a single, developer envisioned difficulty. Choosing a difficulty dilutes the whole experience.
 

Hostile_18

Banned
Jun 7, 2015
4,663
4,945
770
UK
It’s up to developers if they want to include difficulty option or not.

How would a consumer picking up a game know that they have no chance to play it if it's too difficult for them? You bet 99% of marketers won't convey that challenge level and theres no standardised indicator on the packaging. Do those people lose out on their money or must every product be researched before buying? (Which let's face it most people outside of enthusiasts don't do).
 
Last edited:

Zoro7

Member
Sep 15, 2013
1,767
6,188
690
It affects you because it's very hard to design a game around multiple difficulty levels, and most devs don't do a good job at it.
No. There are loads of great examples of games that have multiple difficulties done right. Don’t spout your nonsense here.
 

Danjin44

The nicest person on this forum
Mar 22, 2017
16,171
25,735
1,075
How would a consumer picking up a game know that they have no chance to play it if it's too difficult for them? You bet 99% of marketers won't convey that challenge level and theres no standardised indicator on the packaging. Do those people lose out on their money or must every product be researched before buying? (Which let's face it most people outside of enthusiasts don't do).
A little research or even simple google or youtube will tell you what type of game this is. Not every game is made to appeal to everybody and its ultimately its developers choice how they want to designs their games, and its people choice if the game is for them or not.