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Is The Best Game One You Were Never Intended To Play?

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 4 years ago | from the excel-spy-hunter-still-the-best dept.

Software 156

Wired has an interesting look at the sport of pushing proscribed boundaries in video games. Easter eggs in games have been around for years, but now finding surprises, intended or otherwise, is becoming a driving force behind the enjoyment of games. "In games as diverse as Fallout 3 and Mirror's Edge, players are pushing to find or create unexpected ways to break past the game horizon, and turn the designers' intentions on their heads. It's only a matter of time before someone releases a game where the best version is the one you were never intended to play. That's only to be expected, says David Michicich, CEO and creative director of Robomodo, the developers of Activision's new Tony Hawk: Ride, and a 14-year veteran game designer. 'Today's news gets old quick — we Twitter, blog, pass viral video. We thrive off the sudden excitement of the latest and most buzzworthy,' Michicich says. 'It's exciting to still feel like you can discover something new. It's stimulation, plain and simple.'"

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156 comments

The Most Idiotic Gaming Article Ever On Slashdot? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28086805)

Even going all the way back to the despised Zonk days can I think of another article so utterly inane as this one.

Re:The Most Idiotic Gaming Article Ever On Slashdo (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28086929)

While you losers are sitting in your parents' basements playing WOW, I am going to be fucking a Mexican lady. In about an hour, in fact. I'll come back and post how it was. Enjoy your hands!

Signed,
BigDick WhiteHick

Re:The Most Idiotic Gaming Article Ever On Slashdo (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28086999)

Turns out that was a dude, I thought she was just hairy.

Re:The Most Idiotic Gaming Article Ever On Slashdo (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28087117)

And you were awesome ... unbelievably quick, but awesome.

Signed,
SlickDick ChickSpick

Re:The Most Idiotic Gaming Article Ever On Slashdo (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28087491)

I didn't know. Hell, I've already got her in my ride, on the way to my place. Not all is lost though, her hairy big sister wants to get laid. Go on over, and pick up the sister - don't mind the warts and scaly skin. She's a nice girl, with a great personality.

Re:The Most Idiotic Gaming Article Ever On Slashdo (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28088111)

This is BigDick WhiteHick back from the fun.

It was rather uneventful. My ass was chapped from sandburn caused by kayaking all day yesterday. We kept stopping and starting because she wanted the blanket on, I wanted it off. Also, my bed makes a lot of noise so we had to move onto the floor where I damn near skinned my knees on the harsh shag.

Finally got the nut off after we moved back on the bed. She's in the bathroom cleaning off as I type this.
fuck rating: 7/10

Re:The Most Idiotic Gaming Article Ever On Slashdo (0)

ShakaUVM (157947) | more than 4 years ago | (#28087285)

>>Even going all the way back to the despised Zonk days can I think of another article so utterly inane as this one.

Yeah, it's like they finally discovered the mod community after 15 years.

Kinda like how Quake 1 was moddable, and the TF guys made TF for it, then I made CustomTF from that, then some aussies made Aussie CustomTF from that, then a Portuguese guy made ProzacTF from that, and then I made a new version of CustomTF from ProzacTF, then some other guys wrote additional code from that...

They're a little behind the times, methinks.

Re:The Most Idiotic Gaming Article Ever On Slashdo (2, Insightful)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 4 years ago | (#28089971)

That is one of the reasons i stick with PC gaming, the mods give you so much more replay than you ever get with a console. Take Freelancer [wikipedia.org] for instance. While the original game was fun, with the Freelancer Mod manager loaded full of cool mods [moddb.com] it is like I have a dozen new games to go with the original. Hell of a good deal for the $35 I paid for it at Gamestop awhile back. This game was released in 2003 and there are STILL new mods coming out for it. To me that is value for my gaming dollar.

And while console gamers scream "PC Gaming is expensive!" it really isn't unless you get into that whole epeen "must be able to get 60 FPS on high everything on Crysis!" BS. I just built myself a new AMD dual core, and since I already had XP X64 I picked up awhile back with shipping and all the box cost a whole $281. I will play on the built in 3100 for a week until I can pick up a $100 card, which will probably last me a couple of years before needing replacing. The P4 3.6GHz box it replaced has had maybe $500 spent on it over the last 6 years counting building it and my oldest is playing Left 4 Dead on it right now, thanks to a $50 X1650 Pro GPU upgrade. So for me PC gaming is the way to go. The mods give me so much more for my gaming dollar than anything I have seen with the consoles.

I mean where else can you still get new gaming experiences for a game you paid a whole $35 for that came out in 2003?

Real cheap way to extend gameplay (0, Offtopic)

Psyborgue (699890) | more than 4 years ago | (#28086823)

So called "achievements" and so forth. If there is no reward (and there often isn't, other than arbitrary "microsoft points" as in fallout's case). What else does it add to the game. It strikes me as if the developers decided at the last minute "ooh! let's make these little challenges insteading of adding extra gameplay or quests".

Re:Real cheap way to extend gameplay (1)

Morphine007 (207082) | more than 4 years ago | (#28086925)

I like achievements that reward for completing aspects of the game that would stand on their own. Such as defeating boss X, clearing instance Y or achieving Z kills in a deathmatch.

However, I intensely dislike achievements which are the extra content - such as exploration, collection and some hard-modes.

The overwhelming majority of the WoW achievements are, in my opinion, achievements done wrong. The ones that reward your average raider or pvper for accomplishing the goals that they were shooting for before the achievement system even came out, are my idea of achievements done right.

Re:Real cheap way to extend gameplay (2, Insightful)

nicolastheadept (930317) | more than 4 years ago | (#28087021)

Exception: the ridiculous ones like shoot the gnome into space in Half-Life 2 Episode 2

Re:Real cheap way to extend gameplay (1)

TinBromide (921574) | more than 4 years ago | (#28087077)

You could always use achievements to educate people about lesser known portions of the game. Like have temporary achievements that stop when enough people get them. If a raid zone is not getting enough attention, perhaps the devs could tweak it and stick an achievement at the end. These achivements wouldn't be stuck to new content, but maybe as getting a way for people to go through stuff they haven't in a year or two.

Re:Real cheap way to extend gameplay (1)

Thinboy00 (1190815) | more than 4 years ago | (#28087735)

Why not just produce new content and gradually phase out old stuff?

Re:Real cheap way to extend gameplay (1)

PitaBred (632671) | more than 4 years ago | (#28088087)

Why phase out old stuff? Is there something limiting about old stuff still existing in game even though it's not heavily used?

Re:Real cheap way to extend gameplay (3, Interesting)

billcopc (196330) | more than 4 years ago | (#28087797)

I frankly think the WoW achievement system is entirely done wrong, because it is neither social nor rewarding. You get absolutely nothing for all your troubles, save for a few near-impossible meta-achievements that give you a mount or shiny underwear or something equally useless. A challenge needs a reward to make things interesting, and warm fuzzies don't count in most cases.

I much preferred LoTRO's achievements, which offered minor improvements to your stats for experience-related things like killing N spiders or completing M quests in a city, while being separate from the singular XP total. That gives struggling players other avenues to improve and customize their characters, and high-level players something to appease their OCD. They made the game-within-a-game worth playing.

Re:Real cheap way to extend gameplay (1)

sortius_nod (1080919) | more than 4 years ago | (#28088777)

Indeed, the deed/trait system in LOTRO is probably the best "achievement" system I've seen.

Generally they come in 2 levels (I think 3 or 4 for the quest related ones), level 1 is a title you can display, level 2 is a stat boost that can stack up by finishing deeds in different areas.

Some give insane boosts to your character, enough give you a big advantage in PvP, or make your life so much easier in PvE.

Re:Real cheap way to extend gameplay (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28089729)

I frankly think the WoW achievement system is entirely done wrong, because it is neither social nor rewarding.

You know what they have in WoW that is both social and rewarding? The regular end-game.

Seriously, WoW's achievement system was intended to not affect normal gameplay. It's all completely voluntary and none of the rewards give you any kind of advantage. If there were some kind of advantage to completing them, they'd stop being fun asides and start becoming effectively mandatory for end-gamers.

This isn't anything new (2, Insightful)

Nesman64 (1093657) | more than 4 years ago | (#28086829)

I remember playing Goldeneye and Turok 64 with group-enforced rules to spice things up. We'd play "Hunt the Raptor" or assign the best player the worst controller. We called it the Torgo control, if that means anything to you. :)

Re:This isn't anything new (3, Interesting)

mikael (484) | more than 4 years ago | (#28087403)

While playing Pilot Wings 64, I always wanted to see what would happen if the giant balloon was bounced into the cave entrance just above the waterfall - it literally went ballistic.

Going into the caves with the jungle-hopper boots was fun as well. Actually managed to get bounced out of the cave and into the ground plane of the moutains and was able to see the tunnel network clearly.

Re:This isn't anything new (2)

macshome (818789) | more than 4 years ago | (#28088157)

We called it the Torgo control, if that means anything to you. :)

The master would not approve...

I actually made a Torgo costume for Halloween when I was in college.

Vaudeville, Cinema, and Hedonistic Adaptation (5, Insightful)

kencf0618 (1172441) | more than 4 years ago | (#28086887)

A lot of vaudeville acts got into the movie business (The Three Stooges and The Marx Brothers among them), and they very quickly learned that a shtick that could last for years on the various circuits on the road got national exposure on film -and then they had to come up with new shticks. Games have something of the same dynamic going on with hedonistic adaptation. First the intensity goes up, but eventually the form itself changes.

SOMEONE MOD THIS GUY UP (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28087379)

Now which retard mod modded that post 'offtopic'?!? That's a very apt and insightful comment IMNSHO.

Re:Vaudeville, Cinema, and Hedonistic Adaptation (1)

Vu1turEMaN (1270774) | more than 4 years ago | (#28088053)

If I'm doing a barrel roll in Call of Duty 14, then I'll agree with you.

Already Happened (5, Informative)

LeafOnTheWind (1066228) | more than 4 years ago | (#28086955)

See Warcraft 3 and DoTa. The DoTa mod is vastly more popular than the original game.

Re:Already Happened (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28086985)

So is Counter-Strike. But I don't think the gameplay of WC3 or HL includes playing with map editors or sdks.

Re:Already Happened (1)

JO_DIE_THE_STAR_F*** (1163877) | more than 4 years ago | (#28087303)

Using the portal gun in HL2 maps. Totally changes the game and you can get places you were never suppose to.

You can also fall "through" the ground. Once after falling bellow the playing area I found a Large Orange cube, Weird.

Re:Already Happened (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28087751)

The oranage box?

Re:Already Happened (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28087667)

See Warcraft 3 and DoTa. The DoTa mod is vastly more popular than the original game.

Um... easter egg = mod? I think not.

Also a poor example considering that DoTa did over ride the popularity of straight WC3 for about 4-5 years.

Re:Already Happened (1)

spydabyte (1032538) | more than 4 years ago | (#28087671)

The summary and the quote differ dramatically. For one, DotA/CS was not in Warcraft 3/Half-Life 's core intentions. For another, finding glitches in games, say edge-of-world boundaries (in WOW), secret moves (in SSB), and even delete content (in GTA) is essentially different. I personally enjoy the glitches / hacking at games (no, not like wall-hacking), but then again that job is more for game testers and can get old extremely fast.

I would agree that every game or platform developer believes in creating a mod base, or an API in the case of software, as it has proven again and again to extend the product beyond the original ideas.

Now about game testers? There's no real money there, only a few incredibly bored individuals.

Counter Strike (4, Informative)

Yvanhoe (564877) | more than 4 years ago | (#28088085)

Ha! People tend to forget that counter-strike is a mod for Half Life ! A game that notoriously sucked, in multiplayer mode...

Re:Counter Strike (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28088651)

Ha! People tend to forget that counter-strike is a mod for Half Life ! A game that notoriously sucked, in multiplayer mode...

Half Life DM sucked? Are you nuts? Half Life DM rocked man.

Re:Already Happened (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28088599)

WTFIDOTA

Yes (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28086981)

Unfortunately 3DRealms fucked it up

Good examples of this (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28087019)

..Include "surfing" in Counter Strike (there seems to be a whole community of guys creating maps just for this purpose, check them out on Youtube) and "stunting" in the GTA series, most notable Vice City and San Andreas (there's also a pretty thrivig community, it seems).

I also remember spending hours playing Lemmings, just having fun doing crazy tunnels/bridges and totally disregarding the actual goal.

Re:Good examples of this (1)

BeardedChimp (1416531) | more than 4 years ago | (#28089019)

The better example from counterstrike is bunny hopping. The whole games balance was shifted by it with people becoming highly proficient. Servers and clans popped up around bunny hopping such that when it was finally removed tears were shed.

Re:Good examples of this (1)

Just Justin (1539921) | more than 4 years ago | (#28090879)

Hehe, bunny hopping was around before counterstrike. I remember doing it in Quake 2.

Also in Doom, they had that strafe walk thing. You strafe and walk forward, and you could angle it to the direction you want to walk, but you would go twice as fast.

doing this for years -- house rules (4, Interesting)

panthroman (1415081) | more than 4 years ago | (#28087073)

Surely lots of people make house rules to certain games, no? And isn't that a game "you weren't intended to play?"

My buddy and I still play the 17-year-old Super Mario Kart regularly, but the game's evolved with a ton of house rules. Some exampes:
1 - If you get a ghost, you have to either steal the opponent's current item or the very next one, but you can't just hold onto it waiting for a red shell.
2 - If you get a banana, you can yell "GAME!" and the other player has to stop. Then you position yourself, and try to hit him by throwing the banana.
3 - If you have one hit left, your opponent has all three, and you get a green shell...

This wasn't the game the designers necessarily had in mind, but it's the game we like. Ghosts are too powerful. Bananas are too boring. So we tweak the rules.

TFA mentions Easter eggs rather than house rules. Easter eggs just can't be what they were before; the internet makes it too easy to learn everything about a game. There's no way the new Zelda will have a secret room that nobody knows about for years, but ~10 years went by before I found out about the secret room [eeggs.com] in Zelda for SNES. You just can't have secrets like that in popular games anymore.

Re:doing this for years -- house rules (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28087139)

Those rules sound too complex. The only real "house" rule that I apply when playing games is a "no type killing" rule. Of course there are always noobs who don't know about it, so if someone gets type killed, usually the entire server starts killing the person who did it over and over until they disconnect.

Re:doing this for years -- house rules (4, Interesting)

mikael_j (106439) | more than 4 years ago | (#28087173)

Ah yes, the "house rules", the best way to play pretty much any RTS game.

I've found that every RTS I've played with others over a LAN has gotten boring pretty quickly, but after adding a few rules (that are enforced by throwing stuff at those who break them) like "2v2, no breaking alliances and no one is allowed to cross the river in the middle of the map for the first n minutes" tends to make the gameplay a lot more fun, I kind of wish they would build such features straight into the games but most times it's just speed, resources, tech level and map when playing multiplayer.

/Mikael

Re:doing this for years -- house rules (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28088101)

I have a friend who only likes to play RTS games allied against the computer and with his own particular house rules. Sometimes the computer will destroy his base early on, so I let him start building in my area. He'll just build a ton of turrets throughout my base for "defense". Every single time he betrays me. He'll turn off the alliance and let his towers go to work. I've learned to build more, upgraded towers(because I actually have a base and an infrastructure) to battle his towers. The game turns into a contest of whether I can survive the betrayal or not. And he keeps on coming up with new ways to try to annihilate me.

Re:doing this for years -- house rules (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28088703)

A friend and I still play Rise of Nations. The flexibility of the game setup, such as not conflict in first X minutes, along with scripts to ban powerful weapons such as nukes, allows a pretty good game without the need for house rules.

Re:doing this for years -- house rules (1)

Dachannien (617929) | more than 4 years ago | (#28088881)

The folks in the dorms way back in my undergrad days would play multiplayer Descent with a "flares only" house rule, because it was too easy to kill people otherwise.

Super Monkey Ball Elite (1)

orta (786013) | more than 4 years ago | (#28087089)

My favourite two meta games in games were speed running through Super Monkey Ball, and comparing times with my friends and the whole internet. And the other was hacking Dead or Alive Volleyball on the Xbox to change their swimsuits. But that kinda got taken down big time. Other classics for this was goldeneye and Starcraft, the level editor for which was practically an SDK.

Re:Super Monkey Ball Elite (1)

Vintermann (400722) | more than 4 years ago | (#28087161)

Haven't played Super Monkey Ball, but in the apparently SMB-inspired Linux game Neverball, there are also some people who enjoy solving levels in various extreme ways. Since the game has a video recording mode, you can show off not just your time, but how you did it too.

Re:Super Monkey Ball Elite (1)

orta (786013) | more than 4 years ago | (#28088445)

Thanks for that, Neverball is cool for sure. I remember someone showing me them controlling it via tilting a mac book. Very cool,

Geometry wars 2 (2, Insightful)

Nyall (646782) | more than 4 years ago | (#28087133)

I was playing this at a friends and we were having more fun trying to get the quirky accomplishments than the actual game.

It was called TRIBES (4, Informative)

Piata (927858) | more than 4 years ago | (#28087165)

There was a bug in the game that allowed you to "ski" by hitting the jump button repeatedly. Skiing let you gain a lot of momentum and using your jetpack to climb hills would let you maintain it.

That bug completely changed the way the game was played and made crossing large open environments effortless. The developers never fixed the bug and instead made it a feature of Tribes 2.

Re:It was called TRIBES (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28087257)

It was never a bug, they acknowledged it as part of the gameplay, I believe it was even in the manual.

Re:It was called TRIBES (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28087271)

Thanks for the hot tip, we only knew about that one...oh...five to six hours after Tribes was released?

I got a great one for you too, you know that "Konami Code" that people keep putting on their websites? Apparently you can get 30 lives in Contra if you put it in during the title sequence. I got that tip hot off the presses from a 15 year old copy of Nintendo Power.

Re:It was called TRIBES (1)

Etrias (1121031) | more than 4 years ago | (#28087821)

Bingo. This was the first thing I thought of when I saw the topic. I can't imagine what this game would have been like without being able to ski. Instead of the fast paced/all action game it became, it would have turned into a sniper-fest waiting for the other guy to peek their head around a ridge.

Re:It was called TRIBES (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28088181)

Quake/Quake II/Quake III based games allowed bunny hopping, which had a similar effect. You repeatedly hit jump while moving in a direction and you would continue to increase your momentum unless you ran into something. It works especially well in both Jedi Knight II and Jedi Academy, which are Q3 based, because you have force jump.

That reminds me of a few other "exploits" in those games (really they aren't exploits since the game allows them). Using a medium (yellow) stance, dual sabers or staff saber you can swing left and right in a continuous manner called "fanning". Using strong (red) stance your saber swings slow enough that you can turn your mouse the opposite direction at the same rate that the swing moves in order to do a "poke", keeping your saber in one location for the duration of the swing, which can kill with a single hit. Some people also do "wiggle", which involves swinging the saber and moving the mouse back and forth rapidly to cause it to cover a wider area while doing a poke, although it is looked down upon by skilled players because it's a sign that the person using it can't aim properly. There are quite a number of other unintended moves but those are the main ones that seem to have been adopted by most players of the games.

No. (5, Interesting)

DMUTPeregrine (612791) | more than 4 years ago | (#28087219)

Nethack. The Devs Think of Everything. The best game is the one you didn't think you were intended to play, but were. Or at least can.

Re:No. (4, Funny)

jonaskoelker (922170) | more than 4 years ago | (#28089917)

Nethack. The Devs Think of Everything.

SPOILER WARNING

This will spoil a cruel joke the Devs have played on you.

Once I was playing nethack, I encountered (I think) a fountain. I "use" it, and out pops a genie which lets me wish for any item I want. Naturally, I wish for the amulet of Yendor. I'm obviously shocked and surprised when he gives it to me. Not really believing what I see, I look at my inventory thrice. "Okay, my trusty feline friend, let's head for some moonlight!" (ever noticed how it's always full moon when you play?). Heart racing, I evade or fight off the monsters meeting me on the way. Standing at the stairs on level 1, I let go a deep sigh and reach for my keyboard.

SPOILER STILL GOING ON

Congratulations! You made it out of the dungeon alive. Would you like your items identified? (y). You hold: a sword, an armor, 3 rations, and a cheap plastic imitation of the amulet of Yendor.

I nearly fell of my chair laughing. Truly, The Devs Think of Everything.

SPOILER OVER, BUT AVERT YOUR GAZE ANYWAYS!

Max Payne - Baseball Bat Challenge (2, Interesting)

pyropyroster (1513489) | more than 4 years ago | (#28087227)

Exactly what I did with trying to play Max Payne using only the baseball bat. If you roll, time your movements properly, make enemies shot each other, use some glitches and repeat parts ad nauseum you can play most levels using only melee weapons. Recorded this on its own site [pyrosphere.net].

Best game ever idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28087235)

Want a game that has a totally unexpected chain of events? Want one that will cause your heart to race and your excitement to reach peak levels? Want a game that is truly hardcore and pushes you and your skills to the limit? Want a game you'll spend weeks to finish and that you will remember for the rest of your life?

Then get a game which will nuke your hard drive when you run it.

possible spoiler if you still play gamecube: (1)

pancakegeels (673199) | more than 4 years ago | (#28087321)

Eternal Darkness for the Gamecube tried something akin to that - no, the plot wasn't trying to recover files from a corrupt hard disk - but it did use your knowledge of Gamecube related events outwith the game to piss the hell out of you. Genius. Maybe this is a spoiler...

Logic fail (3, Interesting)

DaveV1.0 (203135) | more than 4 years ago | (#28087261)

It's only a matter of time before someone releases a game where the best version is the one you were never intended to play.

If the best version is one in which one must unlock something, find as an "easter egg", or some how activate a cheat, and it is intended to be that way, then the game is intended to play in that mode and finding how to activate the mode becomes just another part of the game.

Re:Logic fail (1)

xhrit (915936) | more than 4 years ago | (#28090743)

it looks like someone at wired overheard someone else talking about 'emergent behavior' and can't quite grasp the concept, but decided to write about it anyway.

not really news (2, Interesting)

Meton5 (1474189) | more than 4 years ago | (#28087291)

Games that end up being described as truly great often have a sandbox quality, and some of the sand is spilling out. Super Metroid was a big one, and has spawned over a decade of "sequence breaking," catalogued over at metroid2002. One of the great fighters in recent history, Marvel vs Capcom 2, can only be described as a trainwreck as far as balance goes, and yet the open-endedness of the fighting method has allowed for years of slowly developing and improving gameplay and strategy. Games like MMOs (lets not name any names) that get patched anytime someone discovers anything, really end up excluding this player development and discovery process. At any rate, this is not really 'news' to anyone, and it certainly shouldn't be news to a game developer.

Two words (1)

Capt.DrumkenBum (1173011) | more than 4 years ago | (#28087371)

Astro Chicken!

I played that crap mini game for hours.
My Dog, I am old and if you played it so are you.

Re:Two words (1)

Scoth (879800) | more than 4 years ago | (#28089531)

I remember that. And the Stooge Fighter 3 in the later one. I spent probably a month playing and replaying that minigame before finding a walkthrough on a BBS and discovering you were *supposed* to lose the first time you played it (and in fact, it was enforced. If you got the opponent down to almost out of life, it'd cheat). Ticked me off :)

Dumbest article ever (1)

jollyreaper (513215) | more than 4 years ago | (#28087407)

We've already seen this years ago, user-edited WAD files with Doom. It's all about letting the customer start hacking on the product. Palms were never meant to be word-processing tools but inventive users started dicking around with the memo fields and eventually hacked one together. This sort of thing was not envisioned by the original engineers but are embraced by smart companies. Enthusiastic users put their own time and effort in free of charge so that they can get exactly the product or specs they want, the company caters to those interests because it makes them money. There's always the danger of satisfying the vocal yet tiny niche at the expense of the silent, broader market but that's why the executives are paid to think even though they don't too often.

When it comes to games, it's about keeping the idea fresh and interesting between releases. A year is a decade in the gaming world and tastes can change. I play games slowly and it amazes me how people are over and done with something I feel like I'm still scratching the surface on. I don't like how much they're charging for DLC but this is the sort of thing that keeps the games off the used market, keeps people playing. Someone I know who'd already played through Fallout and moved on said the DLC looked so good he might have to buy it again. Sheesh! With the cost of games these days, I treat 'em like college textbooks -- I'll be damned before I sell them back to the store for pennies on the dollar just to see them put back on the shelf, used 5% off from new price. Fuck 'em!

Desert Combat (1)

Zantetsuken (935350) | more than 4 years ago | (#28087493)

I remember back in the days of Desert Combat when I was in early high school, getting the idea of parking mobile AA on the hillside, allowing you to get the gun pointed down farther than being level and using the AA guns against people - was great stuff, then a month or 2 later EVERYBODY was using it...

I mean, I doubt I was the first person to do it, but I'd never seen or heard of anybody else doing it before after playing it for months myself...

There was also that annoying crap on Alamein (I think?) where the Iraqis team would use a combo of the SCUD and guided SAM to blow the hell outta your airfield and vehicles

Or Bocage, with people flying the Little Bird helo up in the clouds (beyond your visibility or theirs) and minigun spray-n-praying the other base...

Re:Desert Combat (4, Informative)

vlm (69642) | more than 4 years ago | (#28087841)

I remember back in the days of Desert Combat when I was in early high school, getting the idea of parking mobile AA on the hillside, allowing you to get the gun pointed down farther than being level and using the AA guns against people - was great stuff,

I mean, I doubt I was the first person to do it, but I'd never seen or heard of anybody else doing it before after playing it for months myself...

Oh for the lack of history education now a days ... I suspect the great desert fox himself might have invented the technique circa 1941...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/88_mm_gun [wikipedia.org]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Erwin_Rommel [wikipedia.org]

Burnout Paradise (1, Offtopic)

DigiShaman (671371) | more than 4 years ago | (#28087509)

Mine would be Burnout Paradise for the PC. I was bored once day, so I downloaded the demo. I kept playing it so much each day, I purchased the game at my local BestBuy. I would say it is the best game I choose on impulse. It only got better when they added the motorbikes as an expansion. I'm willing to bet having fighter jets would be fun too weaving in and out of building and bridges. Criterion, are you listening?

Burnout Paradise uses the PC version of the XBOX 360 controller. I highly recommend it. It's also designed for 16:9 widescreen game play. I've got an nVidia 8800GT running at 1680x1050 resolution. The frame rate is always silky smooth and consistent.

Re:Burnout Paradise (1)

V50 (248015) | more than 4 years ago | (#28088021)

Yup, 3 Burnout Paradise. I too bought it on impulse, when it was added to the PlayStation Store. Downoaded it, and it's since become one of my favorite PS3 games. I especially love the DLC that added the Ghostbusters car and the General Lee.

Fallout 3 "unintended" games. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28087567)

A good one me and a friend came up with was to see how far we can propel a Yao Guai.
It's to do with the glitch when they jump at you, you kill them (on the head) and they fly off into the distance.
So far, the best way to do it is in hills, them jumping at you from above.

So far the best one was by him, and it went so far it went out the visible range... (via sniper rifle at that..)

Another one i have is seeing how high i can stack items in the game. (item towers)

Team Fortress Classic (1)

everynerd (1252610) | more than 4 years ago | (#28087813)

In TFC, the soldier's "rocket jump" was an unexpected result of the force given by the rocket's explosion while jumping, and the damage wasn't enough to kill the player. This could propel them to battlements and so forth to cause hell.

Because the community loved the 'feature', VALVe included these strategies into TF2 with explanations of how to do it, and animations to support the action.

Re:Team Fortress Classic (3, Informative)

jmke (776334) | more than 4 years ago | (#28087939)

what are you on about? Rocket Jumping was known since the launch of Quake 1 in 1995, TFC came much later and they designers of it very well knew what the rocket launcher was capable of.

The only game devs which did not know about the RJ were... ID Software when the released Quake 1 :)

scar3crow: Quake has always had wonderful deathmatch, and it certainly popularized something many take for granted these days - rocketjumping. Aside from your lateral use of it in Mt Erebus in Doom, did you foresee it in the way it came about in deathmatch? John Romero: We had no idea until after the game was released and I started hearing the word being used... Even then I thought it meant jumping over someone's rocket! When I saw it in action i was amazed and immediately starting doing it all the time.

scar3crow: It certainly makes for a different dynamic in the flow of maps, in some cases completely circumventing the pace the mapper may have intended (such as in DM4 where it makes the map even tighter).
John Romero: Yeah, most of the single-player maps break with rocket-jumping. E2M1 in 11 seconds. Heh

src: http://qexpo.quakedev.com/interview_romero.php?page=2 [quakedev.com]

Re:Team Fortress Classic (1)

James Skarzinskas (518966) | more than 4 years ago | (#28088073)

Note to any sleeper cell insurgents that may be following Slashdot: rocket jumping works perfectly in real life, and gives a definite edge over those pesky infidels.

Quake ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28087849)

done Quick

Poor summary... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28088173)

It's only a matter of time before someone releases a game where the best version is the one you were never intended to play.

So, you mean as in mods like we saw for Doom, Quake, Halflife, and about a thousand other games?

Thanks for that one, Captain Obvious.

Self-defeating (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28088235)

If you make easter eggs an intentional part of the game, something that players are supposed to find... well, guess what, it's not an easter egg anymore.

These kinds of things are only interesting because they weren't part of the normal gameplay. Most easter eggs are actually pretty dull if taken on their own merit (a "developer room" with NPCs standing around doing nothing? Wow, so glad I spent 500 hours trying to find this place).

Truth is that if you can really do something in a game that completely borks the intended design, that is a failure of QA and/or QC, depending on whether it wasn't found or wasn't fixed. Any number of game exploits-turned-features got their start this way, from Warcraft 2's lumber bug to the Quake rocket jump (which was a physics bug).

While these tricks have been treated as features, they basically add a non-intuitive learning requirement to play the game effectively against other people. It's this sort of thing that risks turning off a lot of players. The fighting game genre, for example, since Street Fighter 2 has bled off everyone except the devoted hardcore fighting audience, because to be good at these games really means learning not how to play according to design but how to exploit combo engines and hit detection to trap the other player. Basically a matter of who is able to get their exploit first.

Enough Already You Twits! (2, Insightful)

carlzum (832868) | more than 4 years ago | (#28088699)

I admit I don't use Twitter, but I recognize that broadcasting brief, one-way messages is useful to some people.

However, I'm sick of seeing Twitter referenced as a major milestone in communication. What influence did Twitter have on the latest Tony Hawk game? It's impact on the way people play video games is negligible at best. If Twitter went away tomorrow Facebook and MySpace would fill the void without a single enhancement: "Playing Tony Hawk 49, found a door I can open on the Tokyo level." What would be lost without Twitter, other than the verb "twit"?

This holds true to me (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28088851)

I loved finding things and exploring worlds like in a lot of Nintendo 64 games. Banjo Kazooie, Mario 64, Jet force Gemini, Zelda.

Companies think that people don't like to do the hard core exploring anymore, example would be Banjo Kazooie nuts and bolts, the developers outright in the game said that gamers are to soft now days.
Everything has to be right in front of new gamers (NO BACKTRACKING!). The platform adventure genre is dead, but people still love it, and I miss it dearly.

This already happened, back in 1992 (2, Insightful)

RubberChainsaw (669667) | more than 4 years ago | (#28088915)

The original NWN on AOL was intended to be a multi-player cooperative RPG. Players were not allowed to attack each other. However, players discovered that they could still cast spells at one another, including damage spells. This allowed pvp to exist in the form of spell warfare. NWN pvp was one of the best social gaming experiences ever. It was turn-based combat, so its slow pace allowed chat, taunts and tactics, stuff more substantive than the "gay" of xbox live, to flow while fighting.

Combat for Atari 2600, and ThrillKill for PS-1 (1)

RubberDogBone (851604) | more than 4 years ago | (#28089623)

Combat for Atari 2600 had a warp effect in the tank vs. tank games. Start the game, turn your tank around and begin driving at the screen edge. Keep moving toward it full force while also firing the gun. Eventually you will warp out and come back somewhere else on the screen, sometimes to good effect and sometimes you blow up when you come out.

It worked very well. It works in the emulators too.

But when I think of games I was never meant to play at all, I think of ThrillKill for Playstation. This was a tag-team fighting game so bloody and violent, it was pulled just as it was about to ship. There's plenty of stuff on the net about what happened to that game. But the bottom line is that dev copies were immediately leaked onto the net and anyone who wanted it could get it and play the game thanks to an insider.

Awesome game.

Descent II, fun with guided missiles (1)

Chris Snook (872473) | more than 4 years ago | (#28089657)

In Descent II, there's a level towards the end with a very large room just past the start room, with a door directly across from the door to the start room, and lots of crossbarred windows to rooms all over the level that require keys for the ship to reach, but which missiles can fly between. If you start the level with a full load of guided missiles, and you get really, really good, you can take out more than half the bots in the level without even moving from the start spot. I probably got more replay value out of my saved game at the beginning of that level than the rest of the game combined.

X-Com, Civ 3, etc. (2, Interesting)

Dun Malg (230075) | more than 4 years ago | (#28089793)

Lots of games like this. I'd play X-Com with a hacked save game giving me 2 billion dollars... but limit myself to never hiring any replacement soldiers. Very difficult game. Or edit two soldiers to have ungodly stats, and playing the whole game with ONLY THEM.

Civ 3 was literally made for creating such games. I created a "space colonists marooned on a hostile planet" scenario where you started with all techs, but only had one city and could build no more. Surrounding you were hostile civs bent on destroying you. Victory was limited to finishing the "colonize Alpha Centauri" ship. Fairly difficult game, and not at all like the "regular" version.

only one I ever found... (1)

stine2469 (1349335) | more than 4 years ago | (#28089877)

And I don't remember what game it was.   One of those multi-player driving simulators at Dave&Busters back in 1995......If you crashed into the building at the base of the gorilla at 230+mph, then the gorilla would dance.   Incedentally, this building was at the end of a fairly long straight that ended in a 90-degree right turn.... and if you were really good, you could lap the course faster by crashing at 230+, rather than braking for the corner...  ah, the good old days of drinking and driving simulators.....

Speedruns and TAS are dedicated to this very idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#28090271)

The two communities for Speedrunning, speeddemosarchive.com and tasvideos.org, are constantly looking for such 'glitches' which speed up completion of the game.
New glitches are being found in old games all the time. One prime example is the Door of Time skip for Legend of Zelda, Ocarina of Time. You are able to skip the entire child section of the game.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t1wlIAVon-c

A Chrono Trigger run that uses save corruption to complete the entire game from scratch in 20 minutes.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vU4vlzEdBpI

Deux Ex (1)

GF678 (1453005) | more than 4 years ago | (#28090283)

People have come up with many interesting ways to play that game. I'm not talking about mods even, but things to do in the vanilla game that makes things either more of a challenge, or gives you new ways to tackle obstacles:

* Attach a grenade (doesn't matter which type) low enough for you to jump on, attach another grenade above it and jump onto that, then crouch and remove the first grenade since your arms are just long enough to do so. Then attach a new grenade, jump, remove the previous one, and repeat to get anywhere you require. Sounds laborious but can be used to scale walls very quickly with practice.

* Play entirely non-lethal, or as non-lethal as the game mechanics will allow. This might seem impossible because there's a certain point in the game where you need to escape from UNATCO, but the exit door's key is only obtained after killing a certain augmented agent. The game does not and was not intended to have a non-lethal means of dealing with this problem, but some creative players found an exploit that would forcibly open the door with her still alive (hint - involves gas grenades)

* Play entirely with stealth. NEVER get into a confrontation, avoid everyone. If someone has to die, do so with a silenced weapon and with no-one around. Hide the body.

* Play weaponless, with the exception of a crowbar or knife for breaking boxes but never for combat. Use your wits, skills and other items in your inventory to solve problems.

* Play without using medpacks, health bots or the regeneration augmentation. Use only food and drinks to heal yourself, which includes the drunken booze effect as a "punishment" for getting shot up.

* Play without augmentations (not even with the build-in light). Spend skill points on environmental skills to use ballistic/camo armor longer, use flares and flare darts for light, etc.

And of course

* Play as an asshole who pisses everyone off, and kills everyone that the game will allow.

All good fun. :)

Make your own rules (2, Interesting)

TSPhoenix (1367187) | more than 4 years ago | (#28090737)

Been doing this ever since I was a kid. Try to finish entire stages of Super Mario World by just flying, don't collect the extra hearts in Zelda, in multiplayer games make it so whoever comes second loses, finish a game with only the intital weapon. Lots of things like these.

Interestingly these self-made modes and challenges are now not all that uncommon in retail releases. With games awarding prizes for things like only using one weapon all game or the Don't come second mode was in a Rayman game my friend had.

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