Friday, February 09, 2007

More On Crafting Mini Games

My previous attempts at defining trade skills mini games were, in my opinion, rather limited, so I've taken the liberty of inflicting yet another post to unsuspecting readers. This one will talk about the skills involved in playing the trade skills' mini games; of course, it means that the developers are willing to let people use their own skills once in a while, but that shouldn't be too hard to sell to the big boss.

The mini games associated with trade skills should ideally be easy to understand, hard to master and impossible to automate. This is to keep players interested in playing the game from day one to the end of times. There could be more than one game associated with each trade skills; for example, the smithing skill mini game for weapon smithing could be different than the one for armor smithing. There could be overlapping between different skills as well; wood crafting and stone carving should have similar tasks that can use the same game, with different visual sets.

That being said, it's easy to understand how hard it would be to make every trade skill have one or more mini game, even with overlapping. To keep the games interesting, they should be related to the skill they represent; for example, alchemy and chemistry could have you weighting different substances. However, some skills, say, herbalism or jewel crafting, do not have activities that would obviously be fun as a mini game; finding games for those skills would be quite a challenge to developers.

More importantly, however, each mini game, or set of mini games, associated with a trade skill, should be completely unique, so that two trade skills will never play the same. With this in mind, players can decide on the mini game or mini games they like the most, and pick up that trade skill. In this way, the trade skills would become a very real extension of the game itself, and players would be more likely to appreciate the game to its full extent. Because, really, if you're not making a game to entertain the players in some way, then why are you even bothering?

1 comment:

Tholal said...

A Tale in the Desert is an excellent example of ways to incorporate player skill into MMO crafting.