What do you value the most in a video game?

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deactivated-5d6bb9cb2ee20

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Poll: What do you value the most in a video game? (83 votes)

Mechanics and interactivity 29%
Player Agency 1%
Graphics (Technical and/or artistic) 6%
Sound Design (Ambient and/or musical) 1%
Controls 2%
Story and Presentation 27%
Production Values 0%
Replay Value and/or Lasting Appeal 17%
Game Design 17%

First off, I would like to start by saying that there is no right or wrong answer. This thread is not an attempt to make a 'holier than thou' statement. But given how diverse games have become, and how different they all can be from one another, I attempted to try and understand what System Wars values the most in a video game. I hope that everyone will answer this question honestly.

If I had to rank it for myself, in decreasing order of importance, it would be Mechanics and Interactivity->Player Agency->Game Design->Sound Design->Controls->Graphics->Production Values->Story and Presentation->Replay Value and/or Lasting Appeal.

I do think all nine of them are variously important (depending on the kind of game it is- an epic story would make no sense in a Madden game, for example), but if I had to rank all of them, Mechanics and Interactivity would be first and foremost, with Player Agency a close second (for example, the reason I love Skyrim so much even though it has so many other failings is because it has so much Player Agency- I can do what I want, when I want, where I want; this is also the reason I disliked Skyward Sword, it took away too much Player Agency from me, especially compared to previous Zelda games).

Of course, often, I run into games I like a lot which seem to defy my preferences, but on the whole, I think the kinds of games I like are pretty consistent with my preferences up there.

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locopatho

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#51 locopatho
Member since 2003 • 23631 Posts

The first thing I require in a game is accurate camera and fluent controls. That is why so many Wii titles were crap to me, motion controls + lack of second analogue stick for camera = me often frustrated. Also why I can't play many early 2D (Atari to NES) and 3D (N64/Saturn/PS1) where the developers hadn't worked out how to do them properly.

Once I have that, the next thing I require is fun gameplay. Doesn't matter if I'm solving puzzles, driving cars, shooting aliens, stabbing dragons, etc. I want understandable, fair, challenging, varied and enjoyable gameplay. Trivially easy games tend to bore me, while unfairly hard games frustrate me. ((I'm fine with the likes of Super Meat Boy and the Souls games, they are fair challenges) Nor do I want to do the same thing over and over again.

After that, a sense of freedom and pretty graphics would be the next major things I'd look for.

Basically, I adore games like Skyrim because of this hierarchy. Skyrim has the camera and controls working fine, it has endless amounts of varied and fun gameplay, it has the complete player freedom, and it has very nice graphics too.

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kuu2

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#52 kuu2
Member since 2005 • 11169 Posts

The feeling it gives me when I play it. Nothing else matters.

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_Matt_

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#53  Edited By _Matt_
Member since 2005 • 10494 Posts

It's all about balance.

If a game has equal balance of mechanics, aesthetics, story, and technology; then the game itself is more likely to be a decent game. Therefore I value all of them equally.

Also, @charizard1605 , 'Game Design' as you put it in your poll covers the ENTIRE lot under it, so I guess Game Design is the only correct answer in your poll!

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handssss

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#54  Edited By handssss
Member since 2013 • 1907 Posts

Needs to either have great replay value or the game needs to last long enough for me to where I can enjoy myself for awhile and then be ok with setting it down without playing it again (until after X amount of months or years pass)

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bbkkristian

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#55 bbkkristian
Member since 2008 • 14971 Posts

I really have to say the soundtrack, if I can jam to the soundtrack during a boss fight or venturing the world, my overall opinion of the game would be more in favor.

Other than the soundtrack, the game design, specifically It's technical environments. What were the developers trying to portray, and did they succeed? Do I feel like I am in their world? I use all of these questions when critiquing a video game.

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T3H_1337_N1NJ4

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#56  Edited By T3H_1337_N1NJ4
Member since 2005 • 2221 Posts

That it's fun. It can come from various things, be it a wonderful story or brilliant gameplay. So you'll see me playing Visual Novels with the same mindset I play a Mario game, for fun.

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zassimick

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#58  Edited By zassimick  Moderator
Member since 2004 • 10461 Posts

I can't give a straight answer because it depends on the game. As long as I'm enjoying it, doesn't matter if the gameplay is lackluster or the story falters.

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uninspiredcup

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#59 uninspiredcup
Member since 2013 • 35597 Posts

Challenging and engaging but ultimately fair gameplay.

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crimsonman1245

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#60 crimsonman1245
Member since 2011 • 4253 Posts

A polished game with new gameplay idea's, we get way to many rehashes.

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Demonjoe93

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#61 Demonjoe93
Member since 2009 • 9869 Posts

That's tough to answer. It really all depends on the genre of the game I'm playing.

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GerardoExber

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#62 GerardoExber
Member since 2013 • 128 Posts

Story and Presentation

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good_sk8er7

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#63 good_sk8er7
Member since 2009 • 4327 Posts

Enjoyability. :)

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Joedgabe

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#64  Edited By Joedgabe
Member since 2006 • 5134 Posts

Story and presentation. To this game to me the games i remember the most and found the most enjoyable to play through were ones with good story and presentation. Given they also had fun gameplay, but i mostly remember the stories and it's what i use to sell the game for others to play.

Saying a game was fun is very subjective even among friends(I find for example a challenging game fun), but you tell them the game had a good story and it was fun, they'll come back to you like "oh good story?"

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Boddicker

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#65  Edited By Boddicker
Member since 2012 • 4458 Posts

Replay Value by a mile.

That's why most of my favorite games are strategy.

Games with 10-20 hour campaigns are nice, especially ones with multiple options like Dishonored, but I can't bring myself to pay $60 for something that I'm going to play thru once and usually never feel the urge to play again.

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3SidedSquare

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#66  Edited By 3SidedSquare
Member since 2008 • 347 Posts

LOL at voting for graphics. Really?

I'd rather every game have N64 graphics and have incredible gameplay than have all games be mediocre but be visually incredible (see: Crysis).

But if that's what gaming's about for you, then more power to ya.

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MrTakeda

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#67 MrTakeda
Member since 2012 • 73 Posts

A Video game must be fun and contain some replay value to make it worthwhile purchasing instead of just renting, if a game fails to do either of these then the highest score it can possibly hope to achieve is a 6/10. Story, Graphics, sound design, etc, are a bonus. However, a game that can achieve all of these and not lose itself along the way is a 9/10. Its all about balance.

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Phreek300

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#68 Phreek300
Member since 2007 • 664 Posts

I value story and presentation the most. RPG's are my favorite genre for that reason. Gameplay comes second. Sound is third. Graphics are fourth. If all are well balanced then production value falls into place.

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Zen_Light

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#69 Zen_Light
Member since 2010 • 2143 Posts

What I like most is the fact that playing mature and violent games make me appear more manly on message boards.