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In-game tutorial  

350 members have voted

  1. 1. What should it be?

    • No tutorial at all (RTDM™)
      62
    • A seperate tutorial available from the menu (optional)
      171
    • A tutorial at the start of the game (mandatory)
      42
    • Tooltips popping out throughout the game
      54
    • Other
      21


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what are your thoughts about an in-game tutorial?


"if everyone is dead then why don't i remember dying?"

—a clueless sod to a dustman

 

"if we're all alive then why don't i remember being born?"

—the dustman's response

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I'd like a tutorial at the start of the game that leads to the story, but with the option to skip it later.

Kinda like NWN2 or KOTOR2.

Edited by Pangur
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I am assuming that there is one starting point for all characters regardless of their race / class etc.

 

From a narrative point of view I think that this is actually trickier than it looks. We know this game starts with a very significant, impactive event. Is that the time to be showing us how to left click / right click / kill rats?

 

I don't think so. From that event on I want to be wrapped up in what's going on.

 

So, from that perspective I say have a tutorial outside of the game or the main event. A bit like in BG1 you moseyed around Candlekeep and learnt how to do sutff before the big event with Gorion and Sarevok.

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For the love of replayability - a stand alone tutorial that teaches you how to play the game that you can choose to play or not.

 

Preferrably a separate thing in the start menu but, at worst. like KotOR 2 where you can skip it.

 

If anything kills replayability of a game like, say, Mass Effect 2 or Dragon Age 2 or... okay, those are bad examples of games you'd want to replay, but good examples of annoying forced tutorials at the start!

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Optional, dedicated tutorials as seen in Baldur's Gate 2 and the Temple of Elemental Evil are the best in my view. They teach the player about the gameplay basics in a controlled environment while not burdening the main game with pointless hand holding.

 

OTOH, there is nothing quite so immersion breaking as having NPCs telling the player to "press button X to do this" during regular gameplay. This is particularly jarring if the tutorial section cannot be skipped. Please avoid that.

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I'm a massive fan of planning replayability in at the start of the process, i.e. taking into account that all of us are going to be playing the PE version of Chateau Irenicus lots of times.

 

But... and but.

 

They should always plan for the first time too. We only get to experience the start of this story for the first time once.

Edited by Monte Carlo
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I chose other. I'd say do it like in Baldurs Gate 1. Monks all around Candlekeep you can talk to, who describes how stuff works.

+ the Gatekeeper NPC which took you to the room with 5 npc's who joined you, so you could train combat with a party out of danger.


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Separate optional tutorial from the startup menu gets my vote. In-game tutorials tend to just get in the way after the first time.

Edited by Undecaf

Perkele, tiädäksää tuanoini!

"It's easier to tolerate idiots if you do not consider them as stupid people, but exceptionally gifted monkeys."

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no love for RTDM (read the damn manual), huh? ;(

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"if everyone is dead then why don't i remember dying?"

—a clueless sod to a dustman

 

"if we're all alive then why don't i remember being born?"

—the dustman's response

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They should always plan for the first time too. We only get to experience the start of this story for the first time once.

 

This could be solved with a one time pop-up note which appears the first time when someone clicks "New Game" without going through the tutorial first. The note would suggest to the player that it might be better to familiarize himself with the gameplay basics in the tutorial section before starting the actual playthrough.

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A side tutorial that is skipable. I hate games that always force you to use the tutorial at the start, sure its ok the FIRST time you play, but if you want to play again it sucks the fun out.

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Molarbear, I'm a big fan of RTFM (note the 'F') but I'm in danger of being run out of town for being too old-skool as it is :skeptical:

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I liked ToEE's separate tutorial, it made it possible to get the nuts and bolts of the gameplay down without artificially injecting it into the story.

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I read an article on Gamasutra once about good tutorial design, how it's integrated into the game without the player realizing it. While the game itself is a casual game, the article was pretty interesting. Something similar to this would be awesome... :grin:

Edited by riderofsmaug
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No love for the Baldurs Gate 1 style tutorial (?), well implemented in the main story and perfectly skippable after the first playthrough.


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No love for the Baldurs Gate 1 style tutorial (?), well implemented in the main story and perfectly skippable after the first playthrough.

Ugh... NPCs specifically placed inside the gameworld with the purpose of holding the player's hand and teaching them how to play the game? No thanks.

 

I vote for a completely separate tutorial that can be accessed via the main menu.

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No tutorial, no manual. Maybe, but just maybe, a short list of shortcuts like menu, inventory etc.

 

Now seriously, RTDM and if there must be a tutorial keep it separate from the main game. And especially NO tooltips popping up all over the place.

Edited by Scryer
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An optional tutorial in the menu screen would be my preference. If not that, then leave it at RTFM, which you should do regardless of in-game tutorials.

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RTFM.

A separate tutorial a la Starcraft at the most, but that would still be a waste of resources.


Say no to popamole!

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Games have gotten much better at teaching the player how to play; accordingly, today's gamers are expecting to be able to just jump into the game and learn as they go. Good UI, rules and level design goes a long way towards allowing the player to discover the mechanics by himself, and reduce the need for explicit hand-holding. Nobody really wants tool-tips and NPCs that tell you what right-clicking doors does.

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Games have gotten much better at teaching the player how to play; accordingly, today's gamers are expecting to be able to just jump into the game and learn as they go. Good UI, rules and level design goes a long way towards allowing the player to discover the mechanics by himself, and reduce the need for explicit hand-holding. Nobody really wants tool-tips and NPCs that tell you what right-clicking doors does.

people are morons. To wit:

People would just walk around. They didn’t know what to do. They didn’t even go upstairs because a guard told them they couldn’t. They’d say ‘Okay, I can’t go upstairs.’ They wouldn’t do anything,

We try not to lead the player by the nose, but at some point we found that if we don’t give a little information, people just get lost and don’t know what to do. It’s just overwhelming.

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Say no to popamole!

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Games have gotten much better at teaching the player how to play; accordingly, today's gamers are expecting to be able to just jump into the game and learn as they go. Good UI, rules and level design goes a long way towards allowing the player to discover the mechanics by himself, and reduce the need for explicit hand-holding. Nobody really wants tool-tips and NPCs that tell you what right-clicking doors does.

 

Maybe that's because games have been dumbed down a helluva lot in recent years? You barely even need oppose-able thumbs to figure out the mechanics of most games nowadays.

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We live in a process-driven world in the West. I see it with some people in their very early twenties in my job: if they don't have a process or organogram for how to do something they kind of... power down.

 

Now, I'm not hating on young people in their early twenties, far from it because I enjoy their company. It's just that the way they've been educated, in a very PC, risk-averse, all-must-have-prizes world, where even rebellion is regulated, rubs off on their problem solving skills.

 

So the quote from Dishonored does not surprise me.


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Games have gotten much better at teaching the player how to play; accordingly, today's gamers are expecting to be able to just jump into the game and learn as they go. Good UI, rules and level design goes a long way towards allowing the player to discover the mechanics by himself, and reduce the need for explicit hand-holding. Nobody really wants tool-tips and NPCs that tell you what right-clicking doors does.

 

That might be true for simpler games, but with something as complex as Eternity is striving to be, first time players will likely need at least some help with understanding the mechanics of the spell system. A dedicated tutorial section can help with this.

 

For example, Baldur's Gate 2 is a fairly complex game, but it has a very well made tutorial section which nicely covers the most important gameplay aspects. The player can learn how to cast spells, disarm/set traps, pick locks, enter combat and use magic items in a controlled environment which is completely separate from the main game. Best of all, the player can learn at his own pace, without being swamped by annoying pop-up messages or getting rushed into the main plot.

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