A stealth puzzle game that lets you rewire its levels to trick people.
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By Tom Francis. Uses Adaptive Images by Matt Wilcox.
Tiny Design is a good blog about tiny design choices and why they were (probably) made. A lot of them are things you might not consciously notice, which made me think that there may be others you still haven’t consciously noticed. So here’s one you might not have noticed in Gunpoint! Unless you followed its development, because I tweeted about it 5 years ago.
In Gunpoint, you click and hold the mouse to charge a jump, move the mouse to adjust the predicted arc of where you’ll go, and release the button to launch yourself. The further away you move the mouse, the stronger the jump. But when I watched people play, they’d often click quite close to the character and never discover their full jump strength potential.
I thought about adding a ring showing how far to move the mouse from your character to reach maximum jump strength, or a gauge to show how much of your maximum strength you were using. But in the end I found a way to do it without adding any new visual elements:
However far away the cursor is when you start holding the button, that becomes the game’s new standard cursor distance for a maximum strength jump. So whatever the player’s expecting, the game’s maths silently recalibrates to match it. It changes again every time you click, so you don’t need to be consistent. And you can still do a smaller jump by moving the mouse closer after you’ve started holding it.
From what I saw of people playing after that change, it worked: everyone still had different ideas of how far away to click, but now they all resulted in the same range of power and control.
Jabberwok: This definitely never occurred to me while playing.
OT, curious to hear post-E3 thoughts on Dishonored 2, though it seems information is a bit scarce so far...
essell: Well played
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