Paper Mario: Sticker Star |OT| Delicious Flat Characters

I can't believe I'm the only one who sees how ridiculous it is to call getting frustrated by a video game a negative. I just...no.
This baffles me.

So there's no legitimate reasons to ever be frustrated by a game and have it be a bad thing?

We have to take bad design choices and like it?
 
This baffles me.

So there's no legitimate reasons to ever be frustrated by a game and have it be a bad thing?

We have to take bad design choices and like it?
I don't get how it's a bad design choice to not have a solution be immediately apparent, or even easily apparent. That's what video games are supposed to do.

It's not like the game became unbeatable.
 

Tempy

don't ask me for codes
I don't get how it's a bad design choice to not have a solution be immediately apparent, or even easily apparent. That's what video games are supposed to do.
The problem is when you have to cater for very young people, or not...so...bright older people. To what extent do you give clues? Is it bad design if some players are too dumb to figure things out?

Players hate being frustrated by a game, but they'll also complain when you throw out huge GO HERE arrows, although the latter is actually less likely to hurt your metacritic nowadays, which is why lots of games have tutorials which go on forever.
 

Watch Da Birdie

I buy cakes for myself on my birthday it's not weird lots of people do it I bet
I wanna DL this since I probably can't get by the store till late next week, but Professor Layton pretty much has shot my entire 3DS SD Card.

Although, if I delete Layton, the save-file will be there for when I re-download it in the future, right?
 
I don't get how it's a bad design choice to not have a solution be immediately apparent, or even easily apparent. That's what video games are supposed to do.

It's not like the game became unbeatable.
Well you just narrowed your definition of what's ridiculous then. Your initial claim was pretty broad.

I still disagree with it (occasionally obtuse adventure-game logic doesn't seem like a good fit for this series, and I don't like the fact that a solution might be in another area, because it breaks up the flow and forces you to backtrack through multiple areas, some of which may not even have the solution you're looking for), but at least you're making exceptions now.

The problem is when you have to cater for very young people, or not...so...bright older people. To what extent do you give clues? Is it bad design if some players are too dumb to figure things out?

Players hate being frustrated by a game, but they'll also complain when you throw out huge GO HERE arrows, although the latter is actually less likely to hurt your metacritic nowadays, which is why lots of games have tutorials which go on forever.
It's not like this is an either/or choice. Good games can find the right balance and provide conveyance of their solutions/mechanics.
 
I can't believe I'm the only one who sees how ridiculous it is to call getting frustrated by a video game a negative. I just...no.
I had this to say on the matter:

my review said:
Before you assume that this is actually a desirable thing, let me assure you that it isn't. There are two forms of difficulty: fair and unfair. Your humble reviewer is hardly of the variety that would ever complain about a truly challenging game that is wholly fair. Sticker Star's negligent design clearly crosses the threshold into the annoying category, however. It simply gives the player far too many reasons to quit playing, as deciphering what should come next is far too inconvenient for most players to even bother with it.
(from my review here: http://digitalchumps.com/game-reviews/145-3ds/9843-paper-mario-sticker-star.html )
 
The problem is when you have to cater for very young people, or not...so...bright older people. To what extent do you give clues? Is it bad design if some players are too dumb to figure things out?

Players hate being frustrated by a game, but they'll also complain when you throw out huge GO HERE arrows, although the latter is actually less likely to hurt your metacritic nowadays, which is why lots of games have tutorials which go on forever.
I see. That's bloody ridiculous. Gamers today, especially in review and journalistic circles, have no patience. I'm not saying games shouldn't evolve. But nowadays the popular solution is "oh is that frustrating? well, we won't try to fix or evolve it, we'll just take it out altogether so nobody gets frustrated". Good on this game for trying to do something new with a genre, and not being completely transparent at the same time. It's too bad that this sort of thing will probably be suppressed and the next Paper Mario game will be piss-easy.

Well, what would you consider fair difficulty? My definition is that if you can manage to beat a game, without cheats, you're in the fair range. If you can't, then you're in the unfair range. Ghosts N' Goblins, and Dr. Jeykll and Mr. Hyde, would be unfair for me, although they're entirely fair for others. You guys beat this game. So while you got enormously frustrated, I don't see where the unfairness comes into play.

Hey, I tell you what. In a week or so, I'll come back here, and let you know what I think then. Maybe I'll change my mind. I'm not entirely set...I'm basing my impressions on what you're telling me.
 
The problem is when you have to cater for very young people, or not...so...bright older people. To what extent do you give clues? Is it bad design if some players are too dumb to figure things out.
Make a puzzle obtuse enough and not even intelligent people will solve it. Considering nobody here has played the damn game except the reviewers, why don't we wait before slinging insults.

Well, what would you consider fair difficulty?
Would you consider this fair:

Game tells you that you need ??? item to progress. They hint ??? item is in a level. Which level? Sorry, not going to tell you. You have to now replay the previous 10 levels looking for ???.

Oh and ??? is hidden. You have to use your jump on a specific area to hit a hidden block, said block would be impossible to find normally. It is simply trial and error. And since we still havent said what level it is in, just jump on every square possible in levels 1 through 10.

Fair?

Now that's a rather extreme example, and hopefully nothing as bad as the above exists in Paper Mario SS. But by your definition it is totally fair, because you dont truly need an FAQ or cheat codes.
 
Overall, it's fans of the first two Paper Mario games that may end up being the most disappointed with Sticker Star. If you wanted a big story, a large group of side characters, and traditional "attack, magic, item" turn-based RPG combat, you may be sad to see that Sticker Star has none of the above. Instead, you get a resource collection/management, action/exploration game that left me running from enemies and conserving "ammo" in the way I used to in Resident Evil 1-3, while exploring a big, secret-filled world in the traditional Nintendo style.
This is what worries me. I've already come to terms that this won't be like the "traditional" Paper Mario that I was hoping for, but I'm concerned that we're getting further and further away from ever getting back to that style of game.

I don't want them to shy away from innovation, but I feel like they are still trying to "fix" something that is not broken.
 
This is what worries me. I've already come to terms that this won't be like the "traditional" Paper Mario that I was hoping for, but I'm concerned that we're getting further and further away from ever getting back to that style of game.

I don't want them to shy away from innovation, but I feel like they are still trying to "fix" something that is not broken.
I felt it was perfected in TTYD. And they just didn't want to milk that particular product.

I'm probably not going to buy Sticker Star. It just isn't what I'm looking for from the Paper Mario series.
 

Tempy

don't ask me for codes
Make a puzzle obtuse enough and not even intelligent people will solve it. Considering nobody here has played the damn game except the reviewers, why don't we wait before slinging insults.
I wasn't aware I was insulting someone specifically. Especially since I was speaking in general and not Sticker Star specific.
 
I may be crazy, but does anyone get a Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories vibe?

Before I get attacked for being outrageous, let me explain a bit:

You have the orginal good game (KH 1, PM TTYD, PM64).
Then it goes to a handheld so you wonder a bit about what they will do.

-The combat system switches to based on inventory rather than leveling up. (Stickers, or cards in CoM) And you're kind of like, wtf? No leveling up and getting stronger?

-Therefore, the "immediate reward" for battling isn't the same as it was.

-There's less choice in tactics during battle. Or at least, it can feel random. In CoM you waited for cards to come if you needed to heal or whatever. In Sticker Star you don't know the order of your stickers. You can only attack whatever is in front of you.

-It sort of revolves around the idea of a deck, (or Sticker Deck I guess) that is always changing and that you optimtize for boss battles

-The way of getting around is via separate worlds, at least more so than the predecessor.

-When you first hear about it, you ask "Why change the working forumula?"

Maybe you can see where I'm coming from. I just feel deja vu hearing about Sticker Star in relation to PM TTYD. It looks different, but great to me. (And I also really liked CoM by the way.)
 
(Also in response to Secret Fawful)

Game tells you that you need ??? item to progress. They hint ??? item is in a level. Which level? Sorry, not going to tell you. You have to now replay the previous 10 levels looking for ???.

Oh and ??? is hidden. You have to use your jump on a specific area to hit a hidden block, said block would be impossible to find normally. It is simply trial and error. And since we still havent said what level it is in, just jump on every square possible in levels 1 through 10.
I will revise this to give you an idea of how bad it is in Sticker Star, which is perhaps parallel in many ways to the hypothetical situation you describe. Please keep in mind that I cannot post specifics as we are prohibited from talking about later parts of the game until its launch day.

Game tells you that you need ??? item to progress, but does not explicitly say which item, only that it is an item in the game. It is assumed by the player that ??? must be in a level, but the player is not made aware of whether or not they have already acquired the required item to progress. Which level? Sorry, not going to tell you. You have to now replay the previous 10 levels looking for ???, if indeed you even missed an item to start with, since the game fails to even hint that you should retrace earlier steps in search of a missing item that you overlooked.

??? is hidden, but it isn't invisible. It's just difficult to notice if you aren't explicitly paying attention in this case. Easy enough to miss while running past battles with enemies that don't give you experience.

So yeah, it's pretty bad. But the only reason my personal score wasn't lower is that the existence of the internet will indeed mitigate this problem and make the game at least palatable. And it does have plenty of redeeming content, if in fact you can stomach this sort of problem.
 
Even if it plays differently, as long as it still has the CHARM of TTYD (haven't played the original) it will be awesome! THAT Is what makes PM in my book, the characters, stories, humor and locations along with the atmosphere and music!
 
I can look past the no partners, but if it doesn't have the writing like TTYD, I might wait on a price drop. Is there even a story, just bowser invading a sticker parade?
 
So, umm, where are those polarizing reviews (beside the 2/5 one)?

I imagined seeing a living hell, and instead, I got a game with great review scores.
 
(Also in response to Secret Fawful)

I will revise this to give you an idea of how bad it is in Sticker Star, which is perhaps parallel in many ways to the hypothetical situation you describe. Please keep in mind that I cannot post specifics as we are prohibited from talking about later parts of the game until its launch day.

Game tells you that you need ??? item to progress, but does not explicitly say which item, only that it is an item in the game. It is assumed by the player that ??? must be in a level, but the player is not made aware of whether or not they have already acquired the required item to progress. Which level? Sorry, not going to tell you. You have to now replay the previous 10 levels looking for ???, if indeed you even missed an item to start with, since the game fails to even hint that you should retrace earlier steps in search of a missing item that you overlooked.

??? is hidden, but it isn't invisible. It's just difficult to notice if you aren't explicitly paying attention in this case. Easy enough to miss while running past battles with enemies that don't give you experience.

So yeah, it's pretty bad. But the only reason my personal score wasn't lower is that the existence of the internet will indeed mitigate this problem and make the game at least palatable. And it does have plenty of redeeming content, if in fact you can stomach this sort of problem.
Sounds really bad. And I'm not fond of the idea of having to look stuff up on the internet whenever I get stuck and don't wish to repeat every single level. Enjoy Sticker Star guys. I'm out.
 
Cornburrito's example sounds bad because it's so extreme, but I have to admit I wouldn't like something that extreme. Othersteve's....not so bad. Not nearly at all. At least, it still sounds like there's enough of a chance to find the said item that it's still fair. Like I said- will see in a week.
 
Yeah, despite the scores being pretty good, I'm not too happy about what I'm reading in some ways. I think I might cancel my newegg order since I've got P4G and Wii U stuff to pay for this month already. I'll just wait and see how people felt about it after the holidays have passed.
 
Hey, and plus, it's totally conceivable that I just completely suck at the game and managed to miss three different major things that were required. But the fact remains that it happened to be three times, and that the game has zero conciliatory measures in place to rectify the situation should that happen to occur.

I mean, even if it took a preset timeout period where after, say, 30 minutes of unsuccessful searching, the game drops a progressively more helpful hint, that's sensible. But here's what happened to me, for instance, one of the times:

  1. Game hints that we need to be at a particular location (we'll call it Location A). That's the only hint I get.
  2. Visit Location A and find the area where I think I need to search/solve a puzzle. Paperize to reveal a spot where a sticker can be placed.
  3. Try every sticker I have. Doesn't work.
  4. Return to town and load up with around 6 or 7 more large Thing stickers to try. Return to Location A to try each one. None of those works either.
  5. Close the game and restart since you lose Thing stickers when they're the wrong ones to solve the puzzle during paperization.
  6. Return to town again and load up with another 6 or 7 large Thing stickers to try. Return to Location A to try each one. None of those works either.
  7. Close the game and restart again.
  8. Return to town and try the final couple of Thing stickers I have. Return to Location A to try each one. None of those works either.
  9. Game still provides the same unhelpful hint about needing to be in the location I'm already looking.
  10. Finally give up and decide that I must need to actually be someplace else, searching for an item I missed that needs to be used in Location A, which is where the game is still telling me I need to be.
  11. Search literally every level I've been to and cannot find the answer.
  12. Eventually ask another game journalist for help. Although he got stuck in other areas for similar reasons, fortunately, he found this particular item the first time through and was able to inform me which item it was and where he found it.
  13. Travel to that level and collect the item. Return to the location the game told me all along I needed to be and used the item. Progress.
Without the internet, this game is, in my opinion, partially broken.
 
Wow, that sounds really bad. I'm not buying this one. And it's not for the ratings in the reviews (which are quite good), but for what the people who have played it is saying.

I have the impression Nintendo tried to escape from the RPG and casualize its previous mechanics with the sticker thing. You collect the stickers and try to complete the album. But doing this the battles don't seem to give you any incentive to be there (you even lose the stickers you use).

What seems to be worst is that this escape from the RPG genre is towards a graphical adventure style in which you collect items and then try to figure out where and how to use them in order to advance.

But this is the major problem: graphical adventures have great stories, full voice acting etc.

It seems this game is some mixture in between genres. I'm not a big big fan of GAs but enjoyed games like Sam & Max, Monkey Island, Broken Sword, etc. I just don't think i'll enjoy this game cause it's not an GA in its production values, not an RPG in its gaming mechanics.
It has some very good art design and it's Mario but it gives me a bad vibe. Of course, I didn't even try the darn game but judging from the reviewers I feel I'm gonna dislike it.
 
Guess I'll hold off for Adventure Time.

Then not like what I read in the AT reviews, and skip that one too.

Damn you 2013, why ya gotta hoard all the good 3DS games?!
 
Hey, and plus, it's totally conceivable that I just completely suck at the game and managed to miss three different major things that were required. But the fact remains that it happened to be three times, and that the game has zero conciliatory measures in place to rectify the situation should that happen to occur.

I mean, even if it took a preset timeout period where after, say, 30 minutes of unsuccessful searching, the game drops a progressively more helpful hint, that's sensible. But here's what happened to me, for instance, one of the times:

  1. Game hints that we need to be at a particular location (we'll call it Location A). That's the only hint I get.
  2. Visit Location A and find the area where I think I need to search/solve a puzzle. Paperize to reveal a spot where a sticker can be placed.
  3. Try every sticker I have. Doesn't work.
  4. Return to town and load up with around 6 or 7 more large Thing stickers to try. Return to Location A to try each one. None of those works either.
  5. Close the game and restart since you lose Thing stickers when they're the wrong ones to solve the puzzle during paperization.
  6. Return to town again and load up with another 6 or 7 large Thing stickers to try. Return to Location A to try each one. None of those works either.
  7. Close the game and restart again.
  8. Return to town and try the final couple of Thing stickers I have. Return to Location A to try each one. None of those works either.
  9. Game still provides the same unhelpful hint about needing to be in the location I'm already looking.
  10. Finally give up and decide that I must need to actually be someplace else, searching for an item I missed that needs to be used in Location A, which is where the game is still telling me I need to be.
  11. Search literally every level I've been to and cannot find the answer.
  12. Eventually ask another game journalist for help. Although he got stuck in other areas for similar reasons, fortunately, he found this particular item the first time through and was able to inform me which item it was and where he found it.
  13. Travel to that level and collect the item. Return to the location the game told me all along I needed to be and used the item. Progress.
Without the internet, this game is, in my opinion, partially broken.


You literally have no idea what sticker to use?

I figured it'd be like:

Toad "hey Mario, you might need something to get the windmill started"
Use Fan
Toad "hey Mario, we need three pieces of a door here"
Use stickers of door


They are literally that vague? Seems painful.

I'm very torn. I get stuck in a lot of adventure games and end up using guides/help. I don't know whether that means I'll be able to tolerate Sticker Star, or whether it'll mean I'll be lost and confused 90% of the game.
 
You literally have no idea what sticker to use?

I figured it'd be like:

Toad "hey Mario, you might need something to get the windmill started"
Use Fan
Toad "hey Mario, we need three pieces of a door here"
Use stickers of door


They are literally that vague? Seems painful.

I'm very torn. I get stuck in a lot of adventure games and end up using guides/help. I don't know whether that means I'll be able to tolerate Sticker Star, or whether it'll mean I'll be lost and confused 90% of the game.
Don't get me wrong, it ultimately makes sense once you use it and it works. But when you don't have it and you didn't even know it existed, it's hard to fill in that blank mentally, and even harder to convince yourself to go hunting through every single level you've already completed in search of some unnamed, undescribed sticker that you hope actually exists.

Look, I'm really not trying to hate on this game. I still gave it a decent score... 7.6 in my book is pretty good, worth considering for hardcore fanatics of the series. But it definitely is pretty flawed, also, and without assistance/guidance from the interwebs, it is going to make a lot of gamers cry.
 
As sad as I am this is falling short of expectations, pretty much nothing can stop me from buying a paper Mario game. Just hoping i'll be among those who enjoy it.
 

aidan

Hugo Award Winning Author and Editor
I thought people missed the days of The Legend of Zelda when you had to explore and figure things out on your own...
 
Don't get me wrong, it ultimately makes sense once you use it and it works. But when you don't have it and you didn't even know it existed, it's hard to fill in that blank mentally, and even harder to convince yourself to go hunting through every single level you've already completed in search of some unnamed, undescribed sticker that you hope actually exists.

Look, I'm really not trying to hate on this game. I still gave it a decent score... 7.6 in my book is pretty good, worth considering for hardcore fanatics of the series. But it definitely is pretty flawed, also, and without assistance/guidance from the interwebs, it is going to make a lot of gamers cry.


Thanks OS, always had a lot of respect for your reviews (I actually remember checking them before I was a member here on GAF).

I think I'll skip Sticker Star or atleast hold off for awhile. Sounds like I'll need gamefaqs for this one.


All I see is valid criticism, nothing sensational about it.

Entertainment seems to getting more and more subjective as our options grow. There's also this 'too much the same' argument, which is very subjective depending on the consumer.
 
Somehow I have a hard time imagining that this game is actually hard or nearly broken as some reviewers are saying. Its been years and years since I've played a Nintendo game that has left me stumped.
 
Don't get me wrong, it ultimately makes sense once you use it and it works. But when you don't have it and you didn't even know it existed, it's hard to fill in that blank mentally, and even harder to convince yourself to go hunting through every single level you've already completed in search of some unnamed, undescribed sticker that you hope actually exists.

Look, I'm really not trying to hate on this game. I still gave it a decent score... 7.6 in my book is pretty good, worth considering for hardcore fanatics of the series. But it definitely is pretty flawed, also, and without assistance/guidance from the interwebs, it is going to make a lot of gamers cry.
Lets say we existed in an era before widespread internet usage. What would your score have been?
 
I can see some design choices that would be annoying and ultimately a turn off for anyone who isn't super into Paper Mario.

Fans of Paper Mario I reckon won't be disappointed because...it's Paper Mario.
 
Pretty much nothing can stop me from buying a paper Mario game.
Same here.

Either way, even though the reviews are nicer than I expected, I'm still worried. I just hope that playing like I use to, looking in every nook and cranny for items/stickers, I don't have to resort to smashing my 3DS in the wall. I also had another boss spoiler from the Destructoid review's header :(

Can't wait for my copy to arrive.
 
I'm seeing good impressions than 1 or 2 extremely negative impressions. No offense, but when it comes to video games, sensationalism brings red lights for me.
But even the good impressions seem like they're inflating the scores a bit due to the series' prestige. IGN may have given out an 8.3, but the text reads like it's a lesser game than that.

I'm probably going to skip out of the game at this point. Even though I wanted to keep an open mind about some of its elements, it doesn't sound like the PM I was looking for.
 
I'm going to be playing this as soon as I can get my hands on it Sunday morning, so I'll try to honestly describe whether playing "thoroughly" will still lead to confusion/frustration.
 
Eh, I wouldn't say there is much of a difference. Zelda 2 is chock full of this sort of gameplay. It makes me sad so many people are going to avoid this game now because of something like this, and not even give it a chance.
Not everyone is into exploration/adventure. I never liked the Zelda series. However I loved the Paper Mario series because they were brilliant "attack/magic/item" RPGs.
 
Not everyone is into exploration/adventure. I never liked the Zelda series. However I loved the Paper Mario series because they were brilliant "attack/magic/item" RPGs.
I'm just saying. It's not that different. I'm sorry that the game frustrated and disappointed you guys. I'm also sorry that so many are just going to give it a miss. I just don't think it's deserved. You guys make me sad. I'm out.
 
I'm just saying. It's not that different. I'm sorry that the game frustrated and disappointed you guys. I'm also sorry that so many are just going to give it a miss. I just don't think it's deserved. You guys make me sad. I'm out.
Sorry that they turned the game into a genre I do not enjoy. If that makes you sad that's just too bad. I'd be equally upset if they turned it into a shooter considering my general dislike of shooters.
 
I'm just saying. It's not that different. I'm sorry that the game frustrated and disappointed you guys. I'm also sorry that so many are just going to give it a miss. I just don't think it's deserved. You guys make me sad. I'm out.

Don't worry, for ever gaffer who doesn't buy this game because of reviews, there will be five kids who get this for christmas because it had Mario on the box...



....and all of those kids will get struck and frustrated and hate their lives.