Hi Phil,

I like this idea, but the thing that springs to mind immediately is the feedback you mention. Having a voice telling me that a pit is 8 feet wide or that I jumped 7 feet would kill the atmosphere very effectively for me. It has blind accessible audio game written all over its face, if you know what I mean. If one could design it so that there is just auditory rather than speech feedback, I think that would be a very different thing. For example I was opposed to including a looking feature in my upcoming game as I feel that it spoils the atmosphere in a similar fashion, but I ended up including it in the end because I could think of no other way to tell you exactly where branches are for example. I did not use a menu, but rather a method that does not interrupt the game play as I am personally of the opinion that an in game menu that stops the action in an atmospheric adventure title is the worst possible thing that could happen tot he over-all experience. Any thoughts?

Kind regards,

Philip Bennefall
----- Original Message ----- From: "Phil Vlasak" <p...@pcsgames.net>
To: "Gamers Discussion list" <gamers@audyssey.org>
Sent: Wednesday, March 16, 2011 1:10 PM
Subject: Re: [Audyssey] Reviewing space in audio


Hi Dark,
I would like to play a game with a feature such as a running jump.
For example you have a chasm that is too wide to jump normally from a
standing  stop at the edge.
But you could jump it if your were running.
This would require an auto run feature  so you don't have to hit a key to
move plus the sound of the edge, preferably wider than one step or a sound
that rises in pitch as you get closer to the edge.
Then a jump key to hit when the time is right.
This would take quite a lot of trial and error to get across safely.
So some feedback on how far you jumped would be helpful.
For example you walk to the side of a deep pit and the game says that it is
eight feet wide.
You know that you can only jump 5 feet from a standing stop.
So you run and hit the jump key when you get to the edge, and you end up in
the pit.
The game says you jumped 7 feet so you know you missed getting across by 1
foot.
A good example of this would be a practice pit that was not too deep so you
would not get killed if you did not get across.
Just like in MOTA the jump could only be successful if you holstered your
weapon.
There could also be a timer on how long you held the jump key down so if you
jumped 10 feet across an 8 foot gap, you would tumble or acquire some damage
if you over-jumped.
Phil

----- Original Message ----- From: "dark" <d...@xgam.org>
To: <Gamers@audyssey.org>
Sent: Wednesday, March 16, 2011 7:20 AM
Subject: [Audyssey] Reviewing space in audio


Hi.

My snes has been out of commission for the last few months sinse I turned
off power to my tv and lost the tuning, and sinse tuning my tv requires a
visual menue I had to wait for my dad to visit to rejigger it so that I
could play my snes again.

This means I've been revisiting some of my favourite classics such as
Mario all stars and Super metroid.

By a coincidence, sinse buying esp pinball classic, I've also been
replaying several audiogames I haven't been on for a while such as the esp
pinball xtreme tables and alien outback.

The funny thing is, I've found that while I can do almost as well as I
used to at a game like Alien outback, and probably won't need to practice
much to get back to where I was, even at super metroid which is a game
I've been through up down and backwards innumerable times, i've found my
skills have really! deteriorated.

I started to wonder why, this might be, and believe I have come up with
the answer.

Sinse it is far harder to show a large amount of spacial information in
sound, a lot of audio games, ---- even highly detailed and well put
together ones like Q9 and alien outback, work essentially by presenting
the player with sets of circumstances which the player must respond to
more and more quickly and correctly.

Eg, you here a ship on the left, you fly over and shoot it.

These games increase difficulty by a, increasing the number of
circumstances the player needs to be aware of, eg, different types of
ships to listen for which move differently, and b, increasing the speed or
complexity of the players' responses.

Pipe 2 is one of the best examples, by forcing the player to first learn
and respond to the rythm of fitting pipes, then increasing more and more
randomized factors on top.

At base this is a similar principle to simon, though games like Q9
undoubtedly take it a lot further.

The drawback of such a system however, is that once a player has learnt
response time, the response becomes entirely automatic, and thus no longer
of challenge or interest, and, when replayed, those initially learnt
responses are stil in the players' mind and can be recalled as needed.

A game like Marrio however, does not just rely on the speed or complexity
of a players response.

yes, the player may have to respond quickly or in a prescribed fashion,
but these responses are tied to a set of game mechanics which require the
player to use judgement as well as learnt reflexes, and it is that
judgement which can be renewed.

For instance, in Q9, when you come to a pit, it's simply necessary to
press jump and hit the right arrow enough times. In marrio however, the
distance you jump is controled by a, how long you hold down the jump
button, b, how fast your running when you begin the jump, and c, where you
jump from.

Then, there is the question of landing, sinse if you land from a long jump
your stopping distance will not be immediate, meaning you might for
instance jump a pit but slide streight into a monster just afterwards if
your not careful.

I think part of this difference is due to the fact that it's more
difficult to show multiple objects in sound, and thus develope the sort of
more involved physics which requires the players' judgement as well as
their reflexes, however while showing information (paticularly what is
above or below your character), could be difficult, i do certainly thing
more could be done than currently exists, especially in the matter of
altering the characters' movement and physics so as to be more complex.

Of course, some audio games do have more complex mechanics to take into
account such as the first person games like Shades of doom and Jim's golf
game.

But it does seem that we have rather too many games which go on the basic
principle of here x, give response y, rather than considdering the physics
and operation of in game objects.

Beware the grue!

Dark.
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