If you or me could redesign any video game



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Perkilator

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If I could redesign any kind of game, it would be a Sonic the Hedgehog game. Sonic the Hedgehog is a game series that was created in 1991, starting with the titular SEGA Genesis game. The most recent entry in the series, Sonic Forces, has met mixed reception and is considered the most mediocre game. One of its main criticisms is towards its level design, which is notably more linear than previous entries. This is somewhat of an issue, because nearly every level can be beaten in a minute or under due to how shorter they are. Also, there are two newbie game designers and a lead designer from Sonic Lost World who worked on the game design. If I was the lead designer Forces, I wouldn’t have made the levels linear. I would’ve opened up more alternate pathways, lowered the amount of boost pads and springs, put less rings in areas they don’t need to be, and have shorter 2D sections. The more I compared Forces to other games, the more I began to realize how much those problems show, and I began to understand why they’re part of criticisms. Sonic Team may be too late to realize this (or at the very least, not realize it very soon), but having two newbies and a guy who worked on Lost World didn’t do Forces much good in terms of game design, and it won’t do much good to future games, either. Take 2008’s Sonic Unleashed for example. The daytime levels have some linear sections, but they were mainly used for stepping left or right while running. There were things like jumping poles, wall jump sections, and occasionally their own gimmick, and little 2D. The nighttime levels were completely 3D, had things like puzzle solving, and made themselves completely open with the idea of walking around, fighting, and searching for collectibles in mind. The near end stage of Forces, Mortar Canyon, is one of the few stages that isn’t linear; this, unfortunately, is semi-undermined by the fact that is less than a minute long, like all other stages. The beta version is much longer than the final version and has more platforms and obstacles present; it takes less than two and a half minutes to complete by just running. One might argue that another popular platforming game, Crash Bandicoot, is just as if not even more linear than Forces is. As a player of Crash Bandicoot, I can wholeheartedly agree. However, Crash Bandicoot at least takes some interesting turns and opens itself up more. It occasionally has bonus stages and encourages you to break open every box to earn gems and relics. Forces, on the other hand, had little to offer at the end of the stage besides several pieces of avatar clothing that you earn after completing each stage. Comparing that with Crash, you can see that Forces at least has good intention to reward you at the end of each stage, but fails, and the placement of the rings doesn’t make it better at all. To be fair, though, Crash gives you significantly less than Forces at the end of a stage, which can count as a pro on the latter’s part. So, in every way I see fit, I wrote this argumentative essay to express my dissatisfaction with Sonic Team’s way of thinking in this area, as they are the main reasons why I would redesign a Sonic game. Sonic the Hedgehog was one of many things I enjoyed during my childhood, and unless they suddenly decide that they don’t care about putting effort anymore, I still put my faith in SEGA and Sonic Team to learn from their mistakes and hopefully do better on their next project.


Just a random though of mine. Who agrees? And what game(s) would you redesign?
 

Alan Smithee

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DMC: Devil May Cry (the reboot).

Among other things, I wouldn't have replaced the classic Dante and Vergil with unlikable knockoffs.
 

Rodin

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Jak and Daxter: the Lost Frontier. Most JD fans hate that game so I'd probably start there. I dislike how they handle dark daxter and would make him more impish and fast.

I didn't like DMC4 nor DmC so I'd also tackle those next. In terms of structure the game will be split between two timelines as Dante would return to a city he grew up in when he's an adult to solve a new threat that demands his attention.

For example, DMC4 reveals that Dante grew up in the order after they rescued him from demons. He stays from ages 9-18 and leaves after defeating Santus's scheme. His old friends recruit him years later to stop on attack by Mundus's forces that they can't repel on their own. He succeeds and Mundus takes note finally regarding Dante as a threat setting up the events of DMC1.
 

Veevee

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I'd change Digimon Cyber Sleuth : Hacker's memory. So far I haven't beaten yet but I find everyone from the new cast so much more bland and unlikeable and I'd pretty much swap all of Hudie's members. I always get super excited when I get to meet the cast in the first game and roll my eyes whenever someone from the new cast does something annoying again, so yeah. So far, I wouldn't miss them an inch.

Kingdom Hearts : Days. Not to take Xion out, but to include more organisation scenes, less moping and better gameplay (go away, mission system!).

The world ends with you. Change nothing besides the gameplay, I'd change it to ... anything else than it is.
 

JacquelineDeane

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I used to be members of a Video Game Developing Conference, and I did try to design a game once, one of my own making, but I stink at it.
 

Iridium

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If I had to pick one? Dragon's Dogma.

I've put an unhealthy amount of hours into playing this game (two profiles; one via cloud and HDD) but I'll be one of the first to say that it has its problems. The story in particular had a great start, but floundered near the end. From the beginning it's established that you are human, and not some sort of walking death machine as Grigori the dragon DEMOLISHES you during his first appearance. The game shows you who you're going to face and how small you are in power by comparison-- plain and simple opening sequence (if not a bit rushed). Now here's the problem.. he only appears in the game what, three times? Not helped by the fact that the stakes aren't raised until the final confrontation with him. Having high stakes at the end of the game is fine, but there was no real build up to the fight. Dark Arisen isn't free of criticism either, as good as it is, it has problems too. Much of the expansions story is stuck in its lore, which in turn hurts the main story line. Lore is supposed to be the side dish to the main course, not the other way around.

On the gameplay side of things the combat and movement are solid. There are balancing issues with the combat though. To name a few skills, Holy Furor, Great Cannon, or High Bolide (and the Assassin class as a whole tbh) can be game breaking when abused. Things like running, jumping and combat feel fluid but don't feel too floaty. There's weight to your attacks, which is felt especially with harder hitting classes; it's all aesthetically pleasing. There's also an encumberment system to be aware of also! You still have the 'Bag of Holding' trope in play, but there's a limit to what and how much you can carry. Armor weight matters as well, and even things like height comes into play to a certain degree. Ex. lighter frame characters have a smaller pool of stamina compared to heavy weights. But they recovery stamina at a higher rate to compensate for the smaller pool. I can appreciate details like that, seeing as they're largely few and far between these days. Out of all the faults though, the pawns are the most glaring issue. Basically you can create and hire a slew of AI's with vocations to match your needs. And for the most part, they aren't complete idiots.. well, some of the time. Even if spec'd properly, be prepared to hear "I grant you ice's bite!" ad infinitum. Some issues with pawns are human error (like not assigning your main pawn's skills to suit the area's you'll be in), but other times you have to wonder.. why isn't my damn mage healing me right now? ( ( D O N A L D - F R E A K I N G - H E A L - M E ) ).

The meat of the game of course are quests, which for the most part are alright. I just wish there were more main quests as there are plenty of side quest's to choose from. it's your standard fare: bounties, fetch quests or escort missions. Are all of them good? No. But a majority are pretty good or serviceable, while some are straight up awful (I'm looking at you, "Escort Duty").

If I were to fix it all, I'd keep it simple: Grigori would have a bigger presence in the games' story, and the destruction laid in his wake, more apparent. You get a glimpse of this through the environments layout, but it's not really enough. Something hypothetical like having a well established location being destroyed after just visiting it prior would be interesting. Also having higher stakes along with more impactful moments like the above would create a sense of urgency, which is appropriate considering the tone of the story.

Gameplay would largely stay the same with the addition of proper balancing. Things like the dodge roll would have smaller frames of invulnerability etc. And while not mentioned above, having a steed or some sort of transport aside from fast travel is a must. The map is just large enough to warrant the use of horses; fast travel should be a second option. Everything having to do with weight, height and overall build can stay the same. The only change I'd make is including more moments where these attributes matter; outside of combat especially. There are only two moments I can remember that were dependent on your characters physical traits. Having more areas like that would liven things up a bit, and would encourage more character customization. When it comes to pawns: pick and choose what their preferred targets are or fighting style (defensive, offensive or being support) and have those attributes stick until you want to have them changed again. Bestiary knowledge can remain the same, and for the love of god giving them more lines to cycle through would be a godsend. Also, having more than one diddlying save would be nice. I'm not saying 99 saves, but at LEAST 3 would be fair.

Last but not least on the list of fixes are the changes to the story missions (and some of the side missions too). The more story missions the better. To add to this without getting into detail, just having a more cohesive story would be good in general. A story with fleshed out characters, clear motivations and some relatable traits to make them seem more human would be the icing on the cake. Additional story elements kept in logs is also fine, but it shouldn't be the primary source of the game's actual story. Other small things like time/sequence based missions while annoying, I'd still keep in. I would just have the game flat out tell you what cancels what, because quality of life improvements are more than welcome.

*phew* well that was a lot to type up, and still half assed it in terms of quality.
 
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