One of the key hallmarks of Destiny's Sword is its emphasis on creating a gaming experience unlike any other. In a new developer diary, Ken Hall and Ramin Shokrizade sum up a recent presentation they gave during Nordic Game 2019 and how the team is working to create a healthier gaming environment. In the course of some studies, it's been found that the games that create the most positive experience for players are those that foster interdependence and offer a strong sense of community.
The blog dives into gaming history as far back as the Olympics and showcases how social interaction, even in competitive environments, has been key to providing players with positive experiences. However, in the age of video games, those positive spaces were worn down due "to abuse and exploitation" in the form of gold farmers, what 2Dogs believe is the major culprit. Developer responses reduced social interaction and increased monetization "in shorter windows".
Additionally, consumers were increasingly made to feel the need to pay in order to avoid discomfort. ""Fun pain" is the practice of encouraging consumers to give you money by making them increasingly uncomfortable if they don't." This can, according to the dev blog, trigger a "fight or flight system" that can lead to players becoming "more vulnerable and suggestible to purchases that provide a feeling of safety".
The blog goes on to outline other detrimental additions to gaming including pay to win mechanics and the addition of gambling mechanics before diving into how games can be better. Several key steps are detailed:
- promote interdependence
- reward interaction
- minimize anonymity
- encourage user generated content
- promote positive peer support
Instead of just focusing on developing the stats and abilities of the characters, players in Destiny’s Sword manage their characters’ psychology and mental health throughout their combat careers.
But we didn’t just want the connection to be between players and their characters, we wanted to make sure the players were bonding with other players as well. Most of our systems encourage and reward player to player interaction and coordination.
Read the full post on the Destiny's Sword site.