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'Unintuitive action at a distance' in video games and explorable explanations

by Hamish Todd on 10/16/17 10:26:00 am   Expert Blogs

The following blog post, unless otherwise noted, was written by a member of Gamasutras community.
The thoughts and opinions expressed are those of the writer and not Gamasutra or its parent company.

 

I broadcast this on twitch last Wednesday. I've been moving more towards "Explorable Explanations", but video games remain my main source of influence, and I would like to make EEs that are somewhere closer to games! Skip to 31:05 if you want to start with the relevance to video games though.

In the Q&A I came to settle on a subtler thing: that action at a distance is bad *for unfamiliar new mechanics*. Ordinary "downward" gravity, guns causing people to die when you point at them and pull the trigger, and shapes moving around on minimaps when you move around in the world are all examples of action at a distance! But I would claim that they work because they're familiar!


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