Jeff Vogel started thinking that games should be hard. Then he made hard games, analyzed the results, the feedback, sales, player satisfaction etc. Based on this information, he changed his opinion.
I'm not a developer, but Jeff seems to be making games to appeal to the most people, (Thank you Game Theory for my following statement), he could easily make many games, that appeal to different people (A Hard game, an Easy game, and something else).
Geneforge 4 sold under 4000 copies. He's making niche games for a niche audience.
http://jeff-vogel.blogspot.fi/2009/03/s ... -sell.html
He's making money out of the "long tail" - he's making niche games, so he doesn't have much competition, and won't have in the future either. The people, few as they are, who like his games, will come to him and buy his outdated games, because even outdated, they're still near the top of this particular niche.
Few new sales for most of his games every month, at a few dozen bucks per game, is enough to eventually make a profit.
Besides, a casual game will appeal to:
- Open Minded hardcore gamers (Proof: The transition from Easy games to Hard games is harder then the reverse).
- Casual gamers.
- The patrons of it's genre(s) (Like RPG lovers who play RPGs).
Casual games appeal to more audiences (Assuming the game is strictly one genre, with few aspects from other genres) then Hardcore games.
I agree with this. Making a game more casual will attract a larger audience. That's why making an alternate difficulty level that's easier than normal might be an economically sound decision. "Might be" because I don't know if casuals care about easier difficulty modes, and whether that affects sales.
Since his opinion is backed by all that data, unless you can give us reasons better than "for me", "in my opinion" or "I think", I'll not have any reason to consider you statements as anything but whining.
I was never whining. Games, hard or easy are meant to be fun, when a game meant to be hard isn't, I'm not happy.
"I'M NOT HAPPY."
"THIS ISN'T WHAT I WANT."
"I'M NOT WHINING."
If it squeaks like a hare and bleeds like a hare, it just might be one...
You need to either get some facts about what players like, statistics, data or sales numbers... or to explain why Jeff's opinion isn't valid.
#1: Jeff is a developer who wants to make as much money (Or gamers happy with his product, I assume money) as possible, Casual games appeal to a much larger audience then Hardcore games.
the game should be accessible to your mom or average eight-year old.
I'm sorry, I'll never develop a game if it has to be accessible to an eight year old, Casual gamers would find that monotonous and boring.
Jeff is a developer who knows he'll never get rich, but also has found a way to feed his family while doing something he enjoys. He has a niche product, and a dedicated fanbase. He's making games for his audience, for those people who have very specific tastes on oldschool RPGs, and that genre most probably won't ever become big in the way MineCraft, MOBAs or racing games are right now.
This is your opinion, again. Who are you, to give us your opinion and expect us to respect it?
I would make a game for an 8-year-old. 8 months and 80 years too. They'd be three totally different games, with lots of interesting creative challenges required for each. And yet my willingness to do it doesn't mean it's the right choice. It's just something I would do, and that's that. We're not discussing "what would I do", but "what should be".
MineCraft is accessible to 8-year-olds. It's big. It's huge. I haven't tried it because I don't find it interesting (I'm not fan of sandboxes), but that doesn't make it a bad game.
When a player is on the default difficult level, has built his or her characters poorly, and is playing straight through the main storyline with mediocre tactics, that player should almost never be killed.
Tell me how that could be considered fun. Even casuals like a sense of difficulty, even if it's built to make them THINK they'll lose, but actually they'll win.
I played Final Fantasy Tactics ages ago. I was bad at the game. I got stuck, had to grind, it wasn't fun, I quit.
I played Final Fantasy Tactics recently. I look up some guides, had a plan for what I want to do, and I'm breezing through the game without much difficulty at all. It's not challenging, but it's very fun!
Do you enjoy playing games you've mastered, even when they don't really challenge you like they once did? Smashing heads in Overgrowth, maybe, being the unstoppable killing machine who kills everything? Do you have a habit of pressing the Z key for faster respawns?
I do that sort of stuff. It's fun. It makes me feel competent, powerful. That is a good feeling, ergo, it makes me feel good.
Note that it's "almost never be killed", not "almost never be challenged at all".
For example, perhaps his opinion, which has been collected in the decades when gamers were hardcore, doesn't correctly describe the current, more casual audience. That would most likely mean he's still making his games too hard to reach the casuals.
That helps, but with the audiences ever changing, and genre standards changing as well, in a few years these rules will be false, as genres will have changed by then.
He's doing oldschool games for a niche audience, and one of his more recent projects was remaking some of his earliest games with better graphics.
His games are very different from Angry Birds Epic, which would be a casual RPG of the sort that would follow the changing genre standards.