How Dark Souls (accidentally) Taught You Cowardice

Steam clean install gamebest dinosaur games steam DARK SOULS™: REMASTERED for a very long time Dark Souls had a bit of a shield problem see as you might already know Dark Souls is a pretty tricky game and not just that its one that deliberately tries to intimidate you as much as possible right from the outset look at how it terrifies new players right at the start with this big fat demon that drops from this guy that youre not supposed to beat Until You Learn to run away its great but its actually after that the things get interesting directly after you run away from the Asylum Demon and regardless of which class youre playing the game will always add you a shield and a nice quick reliable one-handed weapon implicitly suggesting that this sword involved setup is the go-to easy to execute strategy for new players this simple setup is more than enough to carry you through the first area or two as you block enemy attacks and then strike when theyre vulnerable easy stuff unfortunately this is also where the problems start because this beginner strategy of blocking and poking is so reliable newbies rarely have much of an incentive to do anything else even when theres any experienced player knows Dark Souls is way more fun when youre using a big dumb two-hander a lightly armored dodging build or a glass Cannon magic strategy big tanky Shield Lads are slow and passive and they never get to experience the same tense visceral gameplay as the other less safe playstyles and because Dark Souls only gets harder eventually new players reach this point of no return but they cant stop using a shield because theyve not learned the skills to survive without one meaning that they end up going through the entire game cowering behind a big bit of metal and never having the chance to play Dark Souls at its life or death lethal Stakes best many never even tried to Parry which is The Logical Next Step Beyond blocking because its harder to do riskier and theres no real reward for doing so shields in Dark Souls are what Im gonna call an entry-level strategy and theyre just one example of how much video games have improved over the years when it comes to giving us players the tools and information we need to survive while were still learning the ropes everything from how torbjorn and OverWatch has a turret that aims automatically or how Kirby and Smash Bros has bonus jumps and a sparable fun move or how most RPGs start you off with a nice reliable tank DPS healer Trifecta right off the bat is an entry level strategy and these easy to execute reliable techniques are a crucial Lifeline for newer players however as you might have figured out entry-level strategies also highlight a bit of a problem one thing that video games still struggle to do is to teach us how to advance beyond the basics in order to improve our skills and push our limits leaving players stuck having less fun than they could be because theyre too afraid or lack an incentive to explore new more advanced styles of play and that sucks because a huge part of the enjoyment of so many games is being able to slowly but surely develop your skills and discover A Games depth which is just not able to do if youre stunk viewing things from a safe boring surface level in Hitman the game uses Mission stories to sort of tour you around each level and show you some easy scripted kills but for some players the mission stories are all they do meaning they never really get to see the games freeform stealth problem-solving potential for themselves in BioShock your starter wrench electric shock combo is so reliable that many players just keep upgrading those two things because they work on everything and that way they never have to worry about ammo and weve all seen that person with a level 80 starter Charizard and no other Pokemon its weaker and less fun than actually trying to build a team and catch them all but some players have just never had an adequate reason to try these tools were all designed with the best of intentions in order to help players get over that initial difficulty hump that comes with learning any game but theyre accidentally so all-consuming that they actually disincentivize doing anything else so uh that begs the pair of questions how do the titles with the best learning curves use entry level strategies to introduce us to a game whilst also convincing us to advance Beyond them and did fromsoft ever manage to make Shields and blocking work as something other than a boring Noob trap uh yes yes they did I can actually answer that one even if it did take them five games and just over a decade but Im getting ahead of myself lets lay some ground rules first if you ask me this phenomenon of people getting trapped using nothing but entry level strategies and never trying to advance Beyond them is really a problem of motivation the only reason why players dont transition into more skillful hopefully more fun styles of play is because they lack a good reason to and I think there are three main ways that games can provide one each playing off a different element of our psychology games can force us to adapt through the stress of difficult challenges they can incentivize optimizing our understanding by making deeper more complex gameplay more fun or more powerful and they can also directly appeal to our sense of Pride by gating optional rewards and accolades behind challenges that necessitate playing at a higher level three ways of duping you into playing better huh yeah see what Im see what Im doing there all right fine my comedy talents are wasted on you a lot lets start things off nice and simple with that first one forcing players out of their comfort zone by cranking up the difficulty is the obvious way to encourage them to learn some new skills and promote some deeper considerations about strategy and technique but this has to be done very carefully if players arent armed with the correct training and knowledge difficulty jumps or new scary challenges can actually force them back into bad habits this is what happens in Dark Souls but also in other games too look at Metal Gear Rising its a pretty forgiving game for the first hour or so encouraging players to go wild with super aggressive attacks but once you reach the blade wolf boss fight the game starts throwing in attacks that you have to Parry in order to get an opening something that most players will have probably never even attempted outside the tutorial what this means is that inexperienced players will probably just continue to not parry and will muddle through the bladewolf boss fight in the next few Levels by defaulting to their basic spammy techniques finding the game more and more difficult and from their perspective more and more unfair right up until they reach Monsoon at the halfway point a boss fight in which parrying is basically mandatory unfortunately by this point its too late for these players to learn and so theyre just out of luck and either have to spend time practicing this basic move or just give up stressful situations are great for catalyzing a changing strategy when players already have the information and experience they need in hand but without it theyll just get more and more entrenched into whatever they were already doing even if it doesnt actually work compare Metal Gear Rising which for the record is a great game in all other respects and the way it surprises players with parrying to other similar character action games which use these difficulty jumps to more gracefully teach players advanced concepts instead Hi-Fi Rush is great at this it has plenty of enemies designed to get you to incorporate tactics beyond your basic light heavy combos theres stuff you need to Grapple to various types of Shield enemies you need to stagger and yes stuff the Parry but it always makes sure to introduce these Concepts in a non-combat environment first usually as some sort of platforming challenge this means that you never get taken by surprise in the middle of a fight I can instead get right down to the fun process of mastering how to fit them into your combat style right away Additionally the way everything in Hi-Fi Rush works on the beat both your attacks and the enemies give struggling players a nice bit of foundational knowledge to work from helping to avoid those panicky situations where you cant think of anything else to do but Mash out attacks and hope for the best of course another way to use difficulty in other external factors to get players to improve is to attack these basic entry level strategies directly as the challenge ramps up forcing players either to change the way they play or to lose but this too needs to be done carefully look at a lot of Battle Royale games for example sneaking around and Scavenging like a little rack creature is an easily accessible and pretty fun way for new players to dip their toes into a game and learn the maps but it will never actually win you a game at some point you have to fight and the better repair players are always going to win that means that eventually new players will have to start from scratch and begin learning how to play aggressively because its the only way to win and thats not a very fun realization to come to a better way to do this is to gradually wean players off those easy Noob strategies by introducing new gameplay elements to make them harder to use or less reliable my sweet baby XCOM is a great example of this kind of thing happening in order to stop players from hunkering down and overusing the noob friendly but too reliable OverWatch mechanic the second game in the series gradually introduces a bunch of new aliens like the delayed AOE codex cover destroying robots and sexy snakes that pull teammates out of formation in order to make defensive play gradually more difficult OverWatch still has its place in XCOM 2 its just no longer the number one strategy It Was An Enemy Unknown Because by the mid game there are too many problems it cant solve another implementation of this will be the gradual introduction of enemies with weak points you cant simply spray and pray forever and still expect to survive against Halos Hunters Half-Life arcses armored zombies or basically anything in Dead Space not only does this teach players to actually aim the additional challenge means theyll probably start having more fun as well this actually brings me on to that second way that games can encourage players to perform better and Rise Above safe easy Noob strategies and that is to appeal to a players need to optimize making entry-level strategies weaker and less fun compared to other higher skill options the players will naturally be incentivized to start using one of the most obvious examples of this can be found in crafting systems in logistics games many such games let you gather and craft stuff by hand while youre still getting to groups with the mechanics but actually making a factory and automating these processes will always be quicker and more fun because thats ultimately what the game is about and what it actually wants you to be doing however this optimizational approach can present a problem by making entry-level strategies less powerful or less fun so as to incentivize getting better games can often end up just punishing people for not being as good or for sticking to simpler playstyles particularly in competitive environments for example tourbillons simplistic automatic playstyle also makes him immobile predictable and easy to take out by competent players Kirbys light floaty controls are very forgiving but that also makes them very easy to KO and fun idiot friendly play a bunch of lands to bring out a big dumb dinosaur decks image to the Gathering are fairly trivially shot down by any Deck with removal which is uh most of them this Dynamic is also why Sonic the Hedgehog tends to be so divisive the natural entry-level strategy in Sonic is to go slow and steady this is really boring and means you cant access any of the best routes only experienced speed running players actually get to have fun and play the game as it was clearly intended a way to avoid this kind of exclusionary design where players need to abandon their entry-level strategies before they can start having fun and willing is to make the thrill of skillful play Come not from a strict increase in power but from risk both allowing new players to take on a level of challenge theyre comfortable with whilst also keeping experts in check by making them more vulnerable racing games are probably the most obvious example of this Paradigm in action and its why they make such great party games players are naturally encouraged to go for shortcuts and boosts because it means theyll get around the track faster but this also means that theyll be more likely to crash creating some exhilarating skill testing moments but also ensuring that players confident enough to try the shortcuts dont simply win automatically the f zero games even take this a step further by directly tying your cars boost to its Health going faster is great but it lowers the amount of damage you can take before a crash will wipe you out of the race completely massively raising the stakes this also means that its possible for newer safer Racers to take advantage of the risky player Superior players by sneaking up on them and giving them a quick bash to run them off the track its awesome games with a currency system can also facilitate this kind of gameplay like how certain roguelikes give players the chance to spend health or take on additional challenge in return for greater rewards provided they survive newer players dont need to bother with this stuff until theyre ready but theres always the temptation of those optional goodies encouraging them to essentially gamble on their own skills which is not only a tangible incentive to advance to the upper echelons of gameplay but the end of danger also makes things more fun I think the best game to play with this Dynamic though is Counter-Strike and its a large part of what makes the game so eminently playable at both high and Casual levels in Counter-Strike the cheap and cheerful guns new players gravitate to like shotguns and SMGs are pretty forgiving and encourage playstyles that arent too dependent on pinpoint aim map knowledge or managing your finances more experienced players however will favor more expensive rifles and snipers most of them have better range and damage than their cheaper counterparts but also a commensurately higher skill floor possessing worse recoil and accuracy when moving this means that using one effectively is a greater test of skill and a greater risk should you mess up not only do you risk running out of money and having to start next round with just a pistol if you die but you can also hand the guy who just killed you your fancy new gun for free as players get better at the game and want to test their skills they also have to take on more risk which only makes the game more exciting while still letting newbies compete because even Cheapo guns have their place as reliable workhorses utility items also have a similar dynamic they can open up entirely new strategies like allowing you to block sight lines breach guarded rooms or diffuse bombs faster but in order to get your moneys worth you have to actually use them correctly and not just flashbang yourself like I do you can even choose not to buy armor if you arent planning on getting hit allow allowing ambitious CSS confident in their abilities to save some cash each round meaning they can afford something like the mighty 5000 awp a sniper rifle that can kill in one hit but uh good luck getting a bullet to land if youre not crouching dead still and looking down the scope which is to say very vulnerable to a noob with a shotgun sneaking up right behind you now that I mention it that element of pride is the final way that I could find the games used to convince people to play better sure you can tie Advanced strategies to survival or power but nothing feels better than a shiny sticker saying that youre a good little gamer and a lot of the best games that encourage us to do our best know this very well to go back to character action games these titles are famous for their use of lettergrades to judge your performance at the end of each fight with the thrill of getting an S rank and the shame of getting a d being enough motivation to really work on not getting hit or string together Mega combos which just so happened to be the most fun ways to play its a fantastic way that games get us to do what they want without actually having to include any additional mechanics the power of motivate players with accolades and emotional rewards is it means that they can rise to whatever challenge they think is appropriate while also keeping additional goals in sight for them to shoot for later on in Pizza Tower a hectic fast-paced platformer just escaping from each level within the time limit is pretty tricky doing so after getting all the Collectibles and maintaining a big combo streak in order to get an S rank is even harder but beyond even that looping around to do the escape sequence twice in one time limit isnt needed at all to get 100 completion but offers real Pizza Pros an insane challenge worthy of their Mastery optional super hard challenges standing in the way of the very best gear or some sort of cool gated off area can also be a great way to achieve this because conquering these obstacles is both a reward in of itself but you also get that cool feeling of exclusivity as a bonus something like do maternal Slayer get challenges are a fun example of this your reward for beating all of them is the unmaker which is a really cool slightly phallic alternative to The BFG made weirdly even better as a vanity item because you actually dont really need it youve already been the hardest challenges in the game and its not even that good but its cool so who cares you know there is a potential issue however when it comes to newer players who cant beat optional challenges and that need to stick with entry-level strategies for a little while longer the presence of obstacles they cant surpass can cause inexperienced players to waste a bunch of time trying to beat them anyway or just demoralize them Ive seen the witnesses first few optional puzzles completely stump newer players and rather than encourage them to seek out the answers for themselves it just scares them off which isnt good to reiterate Ive seen people the person in question wasnt me Im very clever I beat the witness first try because of the potential for optional challenges to demotivate players that should be striving for Mastery many of the games with the best secret optional challenges use them in such a way that theyre completely invisible to players not good enough to take them on and can only be accessed by the most dedicated experts whove already progressed down that journey to Mastery in say Celeste new players can just go through the story which as they fairly gentle difficulty curve and occasionally have a go at getting a few strawberries which represent optional tests of skill for players looking to test their boundaries all the while blissfully unaware that there are entire levels reserved for players whod actually find them fun instead of frustrating by going off the beaten path you can unlock the b-sides seasides and some of the Crystal Heart levels which are way harder than anything in the base game and serve as the real test for people who found the story just a bit too easy crucially without subjecting players who simply arent good enough to levels that theyll never be able to beat and will simply come away from demoralized the best part is that once players have gone good enough to beat the game Celeste completely drops the pretense and makes the presence of Crystal Hearts super obvious because by that point youre skilled enough to start hunting for the optional challenges even if you werent aware they existed until now and in boss fight-centric games like Hollow Knight the game wisely locks off all of its toughest challenges behind optional content you need to explicitly opt into in order to fight the real final boss you not only need to do a bunch of optional challenge for fights scattered around the world to upgrade your dream nail and collect some plot related items but you also need to demonstrate Mastery of advanced platforming concepts as well like the nail bounce to get through the White Palace and if you want to discover all the secrets youve even got to do  __  like the path of pain which is three hours of my  __  life Im never getting back anyway as youve probably seen player motivation particularly when it comes to accepting more responsibility and Challenge and moving beyond entry level strategies is a difficult thing to pull off games are just as likely to demoralize under power or scare off players in an attempt to get them to play better as they are to actually get them on that awesome road to Mastery and thats why I think the most successful games actually just use all three I think this is the reason why blocking and defensive players and over centralizing entry-level strategy was such a difficult problem for thromps of the fix in their post Dark Souls games they only ever came with a problem from one angle at a time Dark Souls 2 and 3 introduced a bunch of enemy types specifically designed to break your guard or to flank you making defensive play way more difficult and basically just robbing players of a perfectly valid playstyle that they might have actually enjoyed if it werent so heavily punished Securo actually has a suite of more defensive less risky options for players who are just starting out particularly when it comes to the Shinobi Prosthetics but outside of some very specific hard counters most of them feel kind of cheesy and weak compared to a more risky parrying and countering focus strategy which is clearly what the game actually wants you to do and in bloodborne there is nothing quite like the Do or Die rush you get after beating monsters like the orphan of course once youre confident with the games hyper aggressive playstyle but this Focus exclusively on the hardest way to play means that newbies who naturally gravitate to safer more measured playstyles get basically nothing in the way of support and in one pretty funny case get outright mocks with a joke Shield that calls you a coward none of these games really managed to fix blocking and defensive play as an entry-level strategy making it either non-viable boring or just plain depressing to try and thats not the fault of any of these games they are of course all great with the exception of the bad one you know which one Im talking about it actually wasnt until Alden ring that fromsofts really got things right giving players a nice safe beginner option in the form of shields without shackling them to blocking or making it suck the first way they do this is to give every character archetype multiple potential strategies they all get a shield on a one-hander just like in Dark Souls 1 but each of the classes also get a second weapon set like magic a bow dual wielding or a two-hander giving players more than one strategy to work with in the early game and ensuring they wont start defaulting to defense when the game gets tough Elden ring also makes defensive strategies for players who do commit to them much more challenging and fun thanks to the addition of guard counters which are a kind of counter-attack that you can do out of a successful block allowing Shield based characters to put out a decent a mad damage for a change whilst also making actually dropping your gun once in a while part of optimal play and finally Elder ring simply introduces a second entry-level strategy in the form of spirit summons which give newbies a helping hand that experienced players can safely ignore the perfect foundation for an ego boosting challenge run this also frees up the game to make blocking a little bit less powerful in the early game because players are always going to have a second crunch to fall back on all this serves the Creator game that succeeds where fromsofts magnum opus fails giving players a few crucial lifelines to cling to but leveraging them both in particular shields in order to drive players towards Mastery and playing more tactically rather than away from them preserving the trademark brutal difficulty and unforgiving atmosphere the series is known for whilst also giving it a smoother more accommodating transition into the mid and late game than many much easier titles also and this is just a tiny thing the wretch character class which is the one designed to be the go-to character for experienced players attempting a second playthrough is the only one that doesnt start with The Shield because if you pick in it album ring is fairly confident that you know what youre doing and dont need an entry-level strategy to help you out getting better at something is one of the most rewarding things a human can do but as Im sure youre aware convincing people to shoot for something other than the bare minimum is pretty hard work ironically its our very instinct to make games as easy as possible centralize our play around reliable strategies and preserve our egos that causes us to cling to entry-level strategies to begin with so as much as games do to convince us to play a bit better and understand them on a deeper level a lot of the responsibility for improving our skills still lies with us sometimes weve just got to remember how good breaking through that wall of progression and journeying up to the peak of Mastery fell in the past and then to use that knowledge to inspire us to take a chance and push our limits in search of something even better thats why real Dark Souls experts know that the best place for your Shield isnt between your face and the boss but on your back giving you extra stamina regen so you can spam R2 on yours right-hander even more than you already could Jesus Christ this thing is broken and its right there in the skeleton graveyard like its its the best strength weapon in the game basically for free whoa oh man what are they thinking back in the day oh luckily Elden ring would never give you something broken basically for free accessible just off the beaten path in the first real area right they never do that would they no Hello friends and welcome one and all to the after the video segment a part of the video that causes about 15 of people to instantly start watching and if you think thats going to defeat me well you need to try a little bit harder than that anyway in these segments Id like to point you loyal viewers in the direction of some cool internet things that I found in the past few weeks and also give you a small hint as to the topic of the next video in the form of the background footage uh that is of course assuming I choose to stick with that idea maybe I will maybe I wont I abandoned two video Concepts before settling on this one so who knows the first thing Id like to shout out is a YouTube channel by the name of Liam Triforce his YouTuber best known for some comprehensive analysis videos on everything from Mario to the history of entire consoles and I think what really sets his work apart from a lot of other people doing the same kind of thing is that Liam takes a much bigger picture point of view and uses familiar touchstones to talk about entire errors of gaming for that reason his best works are his looks at the evolving design of things like the Metroid Prime Trilogy and even more so the GameCube and the Wii going into detail as to the rise and fall of these two consoles hes also got a great video about putting a gnome in a bucket in Half-Life Alex to the point that it might actually be my favorite video hes made its absolutely great well worth the watch if you want to see someone do an absolutely stupid challenge one great stuff next Id like to shout out the beautiful terrifying Army of people with disposable income that are my patrons each one of them contributes to helping this channel keep going and without them I would have probably given up years ago as a show of thanks in return for supporting me my patrons get early access to videos bonus content special behind the scenes looks and also a mention in the credits if you would like to join them in supporting the channel a donation of just one dollar for one month is worth more than an entire lifetime of AD views so if you want to ad block my stuff after doing that feel free of course if youd like to pay a little bit extra I dont know like 10 a month then youll get something a little bit extra in the form of a voiced shout out from yours truly my current mysterious benefactors are algae brute Ali Wright Andrew lebrono asaran alner 94 Brennan Spalding Ryan atariani Constance in amend Corey Gerard cosmics 360 Daniel medches Das kangaroo David Setzer Doug Jan Karen belt diglettier dontwo Acton Edward Franklin Woods Eugene balkin Gasco ifr93 isaw Dono Jacob Dylan riddle Jordan gear Lee Bowman macewinder 54 Mark valant Nate Graf nwdd Oliver Marhofer if I pronounce that wrong please tell me Patrick Romberg Peter D tomasak redidex Regal regex Reys dad Sheldon Hearn Simon Jacobson Steve Reilly strategor in Ultima The Forbidden shrimp 10 markovic Tai giren tigorn Tyler Duncan Uprising Whimsical wisp Zach randmeyer Zach Grendel and ciao okay thats me done have a lovely evening and wait why did I say that thats not on the script um whatever dont have a good evening screw you bye how to add steam overlay to non steam games Support the channel on Patreon!: Follow me on twitter!: Check out Liam Triforce! As tough as its reputation may be, Dark Souls tries its best to give brand new players a helping hand as they find their barings in its hardcore world - unfortunately, the manner Dark Souls does this... accidentally tricks people into playing in a cowardly, risk averse way - meaning they have less fun, and are less willing to try and master the games intricacies. Entry Level Strategies are a powerful and crucial tool that allow videogames to ease in beginner players, but sometimes, theyre too helpful for their own good, and end up ruining otherwise great games - how do they do this? and how did Elden Ring finally fix From Softs most persistent design problem? One things for sure, in order to solve this particular conundrum, the Architect is going to need more than that 100% block shield theyve been carrying around since the start of the game. You Saw: Dark Souls 2 - 2014 Dark Souls - 2012 Dark Souls 3 - 2016 Overwatch 1 - 2019 Super Smash Bros Ultimate - 2018 Xenoblade Chronicles 3 - 2021 Dota 2 - 2013 Final Fantasy 7 Remake - 2020 XCOM 2 - 2016 Counter Strike: Global Offensive Hitman: World Of Assasination - 2023 Bioshock - 2007 Pokemon: Fire Red - 2004 Hi Fi Rush - 2023 Elden Ring - 2022 Street Fighter 4 - 2008 Metal Gear Rising - 2012 Celeste - 2018 Monster Hunter: World - 2018 Resident Evil 8 - 2021 DOOM - 2016 Wonderful 101 Remastered - 2020 Apex Legends - 2019 Batman Arkham Asylum - 2009 XCOM: EU - 2012 Half Life Alyx - 2020 Halo: Master Chef Collection - 2014 Dead Space - 2008 Titanfall 2 - 2016 Factorio - 2016 Satisfactory - Early Access Street Fighter 5 - 2016 Magic: The Gathering Arena - 2018 Sonic Mania - 2017 Dark and Darker - Early Access Super Mario 3D world - 2013 Mario Kart 8 - 2014 Burnout Paradise Remastered - 2018 Descenders - 2018 F Zero GX - 2003 Spelunky 2 - 2020 Hades - 2020 THe Binding of Isaac: Rebirth - 2014 Duck Game - 2015 Bayonetta 2 - 2014 Rollerdrome - 2022 Pizza Tower - 2023 Darkest Dungeon - 2016 Marvels Midnight Suns - 2022 DOOM Eternal - 2020 Hollow Knight - 2017 Persona 5 Royal - 2019 The Witness - 2016 Neon White - 2022 Getting Over It with Bennet Foddy - 2017 Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice - 2019 Bloodborne - 2015 Stardew Valley - 2016 Atomic Heart - 2023 wasteland 3 steam can i play my steam games on xbox one tft steam deck how to add gog games to steam library pressure steam washer