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Limited Sprinting in Open World Games.

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Hello Everyone, I recently read an article from PC Gamer called "Sprint meters in open world games suck, and here's how to fix them" by Christopher Livingston and it discusses the author's dislike of the implementation of limited sprinting in video games. Here some of their key quotes and points:

"I imagine sprint meters are intended to create an element of strategy. “Golly, I better keep my sprint meter filled now in case I need it later,” players are perhaps supposed to mutter to themselves. Or, to create moments of tension: “Oh no! I need to escape whatever dangerous situation is, but my sprint meter is drained! Not being able to run at top speed means this exciting situation has become even more exciting!”

I really don’t ever encounter those situations, though—nor do I engage in that sort of highly unrealistic internal monologue—and I’m guessing few ever do. I never conserve my sprint meter for use later. I may wait for it to recharge before entering combat, but “waiting a few seconds for a meter to fill up” hardly feels like strategy, just downtime. I never “tactically walk” around instead of sprinting because I want to remain fresh for a fight. I sprint everywhere, all the time. We all do, we’re busy people, or at least impatient ones.

In some games the meter is invisible, in other games it's tied into systems like stamina, endurance, and so on. The effect is the same: slowing you down for no good reason. Stalker, Skyrim, Fallout 4, No Man’s Sky, and lots of Early Access games like Ark and Grav, I’m looking at you."

The author proposes a few fixes such as

-1 Removing Limited Sprinting altogether. His reasoning "Sprinting for fifteen seconds, then slowing to let the meter refill, then sprinting again, then slowing again just isn’t an enjoyable way to explore a huge open world".

-2 "Make the sprint meter match my (in-game) physique "

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Essentially if the character is already looking quite fit, increase their stamina meter to meet it.

-3 "Separate sprinting from stamina"

Quote

"having a long, slow, slog of a fight due to a lack of stamina can be exciting, or draining, or make you feel like you’re really involved in a struggle. Having a long, slow, slog of a run across the world because your legs and lungs are garbage isn’t satisfying at all. It's tedious."

-4 "Let sprint ability increase naturally instead of something you have to invest your skill points in naturally".

Exactly what it sounds like.

-5 "Creatively penalize players for sprinting "

The author cites DayZ as an example, saying

"I fondly recall that it let me run at top speed across the map for as long as I liked. At the same time, it didn’t treat me as superhuman. After a long run, it would take some time to have steady aim because my character was out of breath. This system allowed me to get where I wanted to go as fast as I could, but when I got there I’d have to deal with the consequences of my marathon.

There are other ways to put players who sprint endlessly at a disadvantage. They could make more noise (huffing and puffing) which would alert enemies or monsters or other players. In an RPG, lower my charisma for the next half-hour: I’m probably much less charming if I’m a gasping, stinky, sweaty mess. Items that are used to improve health could be rended less effective until I’ve rested a bit. Hell, you could have me hunch over and vomit for all I care—if I’ve just run for thirty minutes through a fantasy realm, I’m probably not going to be able to instantly scarf down a fried rat cutlet or baked wolf haunch without barfing it right back up.

As long as I get where I’m going without having to keep toggling the sprint key on and off, you can punish me however you like."

So yeah, what are your guy's thoughts on this?

Source: Original link


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