Some people get off on hard video games. The joy for them comes from the challenge of overcoming obstacles. There are entire genres of video games that appeal to people who want to be kicked in the balls 99 times so that on the hundredth time they can do it back. But what makes a game difficult? How do developers define and create difficulty?
For the purposes of this article, I want to look at parallel examples of games, one of which I think is hard and one of which I think is unfair. Again, for the purposes of this article, these are the definitions we’ll be using for these terms:
A hard game is a game that you lose frequently because of a lack of skill on your part as a player.
An unfair game possesses in its gameplay one or more mechanics that are designed to kill the player in a way that is generally unexpected or otherwise difficult, through the skills that you have been taught up until that point, to respond to. This definition sounds a little awkward, I admit, but it will make more sense as we get into examples.
Scott Watmough has many strong opinions about many things that he knows very little about. They're usually about video games.