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Implementation of Choice in games.

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I have found that during my gaming time I struggle to find games  that really implements choice in an impactful and successful way.

For example, the telltale walking dead series although being heavily choiced based essentially boils down too a slightly different experience in how you progress through the game, main events and main story path is forever remained unchanged by your decisions.

Mass Effect 3 is also an example of failure of choice implementation by essentially brushing aside player choice from the previous games for the most part and giving everyone a very similiar experience.

Example: Kill alien race - they are "revived" and are now an enemy. Or Save Alien Race - they are taken over and are now an enemy.

Fallout New Vegas showed a game with heavy player choice but the consequences were only realised in a slideshow epilogue and the effects on the world inside the game itself were mostly minor, although this is a good and satisfying system it still doesn't grant the sort of choice impact I am really looking for.

Heavy Rain may be actually one of the only games I have played where choice and player actions actually have meaningful impact on the narrative, different ways to play result in many endings and this is excellent, but to be fair it isn't exactly a traditional game by any means.

So I guess my main question is, What games do you know of or that you have played that have an implementation of player choice that isn't just an epilogue or an asthetic illusion of choice when infact it's the same path but a game that takes my actions and choices and grants me an experience vastly different to other players.



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Have a bunch of different endings is good way to start, but not push the button endings (Deus Ex and ME3) have the choices factor in so that we can't change it right at the end to whatever we want. I want my decisions throughout the game(s) to actually impact he ending rather than be an afterthought.

Other than that just effect upgrades like Infamous only with more branches and unlock different quest trees or allies based on choices. The important thing, as you demonstrated with the Racchni (not sure if that's spelt right) scenario, is that it needs to actually be a different path rather than the same one with a different face swapped in and/or different dialog. As in completely new missions and areas need to happen and be unlocked based on choices.




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Heavy Rain is a bad example, too. The game does work with the illusion of choice pretty well, but, for the most part, everyone end up playing the same chapters as everyone. There are decisions that have no virtual consequence, even if there's lot of pressure onto the player when deciding.

I don't know games like you're asking but...if I had to put a game, I would definitively say that being good or bad in the original True Crime did change the whole, whole experience.



Only Heavy Rain as far as I know. I find choices a joke, because I know they make no significant difference in the game. Heavy Rain seriously deserved to be game of the year and it blows my mind that the walking dead (which is quite good) got so many game of the year awards. Guess that's what happens when you go indie.



naruball said:
Only Heavy Rain as far as I know. I find choices a joke, because I know they make no significant difference in the game. Heavy Rain seriously deserved to be game of the year and it blows my mind that the walking dead (which is quite good) got so many game of the year awards. Guess that's what happens when you go indie.

The Walking dead was quite an emotional game with many suprises and the story was quite interesting at times but a felt like a large majority of it was doing very meaningless tasks and going through painfully slow animations to do those tasks. Essentially the raw gameplay apart from a small few moments was largely unenjoyable, so for me a decent game for what it is but definately not game of the year.



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Heavy Rain. After finishing it I would of said TWD:TG, but in retrospect, not so much but more so than something like Fallout.



The focus on choice styled gameplay should be put to rest for now. It will be a loooong time and alot of money to, get to level where it "really" changes not slightly "alters" the main story branch. Currently its just an illusion.. like alot of other elements in the presentation department.



Have you tried The Witcher?

Some of the consequences are just cosmetic, but other influence your relation with other characters (making them friends or foes) and mark if you can or can not make certain quests.



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Sid Meier: "A [good] game is a series of interesting choices" http://www.half-real.net/dictionary/#fun

I agree with him, therefore: Civilization V (or any earlier iterarion of the franchise). Each new Civ session can be different from the last one based on your choices.