I’ve seen some large holes in my life.
If you follow me over on Twitter you may have noticed me talking about NieR: Automata recently. Which, by the way, if you don’t follow me over Twitter, maybe you should consider doing so. I’ve many an interesting Tweet for you to peruse. Like this poll– which may or may not have a deeper, higher, more existential meaning than at first glance. But don’t follow me on Twitter if you’re going to convince me to make purchases I know I ought not to. I made that mistake asking whether or not NieR: Automata was worth a release week purchase.
It’s hard to disagree when everyone is so helpful, friendly, and convincing.
But it did get me thinking about the variety of titles I’ve played over the years which are made up of many different elements. Like Mass Effect, where each individual element is not as strong as all of them combined. Where each facet is but one of the many reasons you love to return to the experience again and again. It’s an interesting design decision that I enjoy immensely.
Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning was another of these. Which featured quite an interesting action orientated combat system with complex character development. It was an interesting system as you were never really tied down, it essentially gave you the ability to build any character that you could imagine and then be able to further strengthen their role in combat. It’s nice as it almost reminds me of an ARPG. But instead of using older, perhaps tired mechanics it opted for a different approach. One that may not have been to everyone’s taste- but at least attempted to blend together many mechanics. I find it keeps these titles fresh, too. You never feel as though you’re stagnating in repetitive actions.
I realise that this post might seem a little odd, as it has been a while since I’ve done something a little more analytical and a little less focused on a particular title I’m playing at the time. But it seemed like an interesting point to note. Especially given that there will likely be some content concerning NieR: Automata in the near future. Which is full of many different mechanics, alongside many different styles of play and combat. Mixing the frantic twitchy reactions of bullet hell with calculated third person JRPG combat.
Honestly, it’s a ridiculously enjoyable and incredibly fun time.
Fallout 3 and Fallout: New Vegas are also great examples of where many different systems come together to create truly interesting and enjoyable experiences. I’ve always loved that particular levelling system, as it combines the option to unlock new abilities with a meaningful point investment system. Especially in Fallout: New Vegas where weapon requirements exist.
I do believe it’s the very nature of these titles that have kept me as interested in them as I have been. Some that I’ve played in the past have been so focused on one particular style, mechanic, or even gimmick that they quickly became uninteresting. I’d imagine it’s not easy to combine these different styles together, though. Which is probably the primary reason you don’t see more of an assortment of mechanics in a wider range of titles. Still, like most good things, it’s probably better that it’s less frequent than more. But I’m always interested in seeing what the next combinations will be and how they’ll change my overall experience. Not all changes are for the better after all. Some were better focusing on their developed systems.
Have a nice weekend, all!