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When gameplay relies heavily on Git Gud

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My definition of Git Gud: Requiring players to become better with their gameplay skill, tactics, or strategy with no new buffs at the start of a playthrough that would come from items/abilities/stats gained after each game over/death.

Discussion questions:

  • How often is Git Gud one of the primary contributors to a game's total gameplay time? Has this changed over the years?
  • Do games that require Git Gud tend to have a shorter winning playthrough time than those that don't if both games are in the same genre?
  • What genres do you wish Git Gud was more present in? Where do you wish Git Gud was less present?
  • Does Git Gud in general hurt such games' appeal to mainstream PC gamers? Is it any different for mainstream console gamers?
  • Do games that require Git Gud tend to make that intention known in their pre-purchase materials: Online store description, marketing, ads, etc?

Why I have been thinking about these questions:

I realized why my opinions on Roguelite games vary more than any other genre I've played. For me roguelites more often have contention between how much their gameplay engages me and how much challenge the game presents. It just so happens that generally the challenge seems greater with roguelites because of mechanics such as permadeath.

I'm a moderately patientgamer when it comes to actually playing through games, as I am willing to try at least a few different strategies in game playthroughs where I am stuck in an area before I give up on game progression or the game itself. The more I am enjoying the game, then the more willing I am to try to Git Gud. The more progression provided between playthroughs, failed or successful, the more willing I may be to replay a game.

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There's been some roguelites I've played in recent memory with some decent concepts, but in the end I didn't play the game as long as I expected because the gameplay loop got tiring when retrying because the game required me to Git Gud. Some of them include:

Rampage Knights: 2D beat 'em up roguelite has some neat mechanics like gore, unique lock picking, elements of chance, environmental effects, and spells. Putting aside clunky controls, there was no progression or unlocks between failed playthroughs, and any unlocks there may have been after one successful playthrough wasn't very rewarding or didn't affect gameplay – Thus relying on Git Gud.

Dungeon of the Endless: 2D tower defense strategy RPG rougelike (arguably more rouge than most roguelites I play) is unique at face value which motivated me to retry with different characters and beat at least one dungeon. So given my love for TD hybrids like Sanctum 2 I had high hopes for putting 100+ hours into this game. Only characters (well balanced), dungeons, and sketchbook/art can be unlocked, which meant that gameplay relied on Git Gud. After unlocking a few characters, beating a dungeon, and trying different difficulties, I found that I got what I wanted out of the game after a dozen hours. The gameplay loop got tiring in part because the two difficulties available seemed either too easy or welcome to hell, despite trying various characters & strategies with the latter difficulty.

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