This is great! And you work so fast! Will the player be allowed to place the pickup in the final version?
No, I played around with that idea at the beginning of the process and it stuck around for quite some time but in the end I decided to switch to a randomly placed goal (from a predetermined set).
I did this for a number of reasons :
- Having to set the goals really messed with the flow of the game.
- Players became confused by this sometimes.
- Clever players figured out ways to get high scores in cheap ways to often, making the game less fun for everyone involved, even them
- It gives me more agency over the level design. I can force players to pass through certain difficult paths.
- It adds a level of randomness that allows for weaker players to beat a high score every now and again. This doesn't happen often but when it does it's real cool for them.
Although it fitted the theme of 'challenging yourself' very well, all these reasons ended up being more important to me than sticking to my initial idea.
Thanks for the thorough reply! I'm using the same or similar method for pickups in my game (using the predetermined set) without thinking too much about it (I'm focusing in other aspects of the game), but that design choice piqued my interest. Maybe it could work in a game with a different goal. Anyway, I love to think about metaphors for mechanics, so it's food for thought.
I think it might work well in a setting where the player gets rewarded for placing a goal further away, while also increasing the risks involved to get there (like perma death and harder enemies along your path). This way you encourage the player to really challenge themselves while also being realistic about their own skills. This would also facilitate longer play session in between goals taking away the problem of flow loss in between 'rounds' as a breather from time to time would be a good thing I guess. It still leaves the problem of level design, but there's certainly a solution for that once you know the setting of the game.
If I ever come across such a design, I hope I'll remember this thread.
If not, I hope you do. :D