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A Detailed Cross-Examination of Yesterday and Today's Best-Selling Platform Games

August 4, 2006 Article Start Previous Page 19 of 31 Next

3 - Reward elements

A traditional game is essentially an event where goals are achieved and rewards received – mechanical, visual, sonic or otherwise. Rewards are often granted upon completion of a goal and are considered widely as *the* incentive to play through an entire game, through a well-structured goal and reward system.

Pick up types

Power-up types

Permanent upgrade types

of first power-up

Power-ups per level

Ending rewards

Extra life.
Power-up + Hit point up.
World map navigation items

Flying ability. Hiding ability. Bouncing projectile ability. Smash over head blocks.


Beginning of first stage.

3 or more on average, every level.

End sequence, plus 28 power up items when you start a new game.

Finance + Hit point up + Quota key.
Multi finance.
Extra life
Power up.
Quota token: ability unlock, combined with event unlock.
Quota token: Bonus area unlock.

Speed up.
Underwater / 1 hit protection.

Super character ability - allows temporary - relative to finance level – invincibility, including higher jumping ability + faster movement.

Beginning of first stage.

Between 3 and 5 on average, every level.

Standard end sequence, or special ending if all bonus-Quota tokens are collected.

Extra life.
Heath quota.
Hit point up. Power-up.
Quota token:
area unlock.
Quota token: Bonus area unlock.
Quota token: event unlock.

Shrink size.
Restore size.
Stronger attack.

Long distance punch.
Slow descent. Dash.

After first two sub levels.

Around 5 per level.

Standard end sequence.

Multi finance. Extra life.
Hit point up.
Quota token:
area unlock.

Health up. Invincibility.


Beginning of first stage.

Between 3 and 5 on average.

Standard ending for defeating final boss. Special ending if 26 Quota items are collected. Special Bonus area if 26 Quota tokens are collected.

Multi finance.
Random finance.
Health up.
Power up.
Extra life.
Quota token: area unlock.
Quota token: event unlock.
Hit point up.
Organic sub game avatar.

1-hit protection.
Finance magnet.

Speed power up.
Additional attack.
Halve charge time for Speed power.

Middle of second stage.

3 on average.

Standard end sequence.
Additional gameplay if all character missions are 100% complete.
Special end sequence if additional gameplay is complete. Special message if all Quota tokens are collected.

Multi finance.
Hit point up.
Hit point finance.
Quota token: area unlock.
Quota token: event unlock.

Attack up. Projectile ability. Speed up.

Only for vehicle.

Mid-way through training level.

Ranges between 3 and 15 relative to size or type of stage.

Complete the game with 100 or more Quota tokens to get an extra ending.

Hit point up.
Multi finance. Power up.
Quota token: area unlock.
Quota token: ability unlock.
Quota token: unlock event.
Quota token: power up unlock.
Extra life.

Launch upward.
Jet forward. Special vehicle.

Water cannon.

Beginning of first stage.

Between 1 and 3.

Standard end sequence. Additional gameplay. Extra ending if all Quota token collected.

Extra life.
Secret revealer.
Power up + Hit point up.
Bonus game enabler.
Unlock level enabler.

Invincibility within bonus game ability.
Invincibility that allows instant enemy kills.
Invincibility that spawns finance behind your movements.
Bouncing projectile ability. Smash blocks from above and below ability.
Shrinking + high agility ability.
High speed + armour + vertical block breaking ability.


Beginning of first stage.

Between 3 and 4 for easily available power ups.
Between 1 and 3 for power ups rewarded by skill-mini games.
Game map also offers free power-ups between levels.

Standard end sequence. Additional character unlocking code.
Newly unlocked in-game decoration rewards.
Additional status markings if all game completion conditions are met.

Article Start Previous Page 19 of 31 Next

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