Thursday, April 28, 2011

GSL Resource Article: Dealing with your game genre weaknesses

This was originally going to be added as the introduction of the next GSL game analysis, but it got long enough to just separate itself into its own post.

An analytical writer prides oneself on the objectivity of their writing, with the ability to put aside one's personal feelings about a subject in order to produce an informational, unbiased product. If I was unable to do so, this article would be written more like the stuff that you would see from your 13 year old siblings tumblr account, screaming beautiful poetic rants of anguish and emotion of my absolute hatred of sports games. Luckily I'm objective enough to realize that even though it isn't easy for me, it might be for someone else. I just finished playing Backyard Sports: Sandlot Sluggers, which was an easy game for everyone else other than me. With my group of friends, I was the first to start, and the last to finish six months later due to my personal feelings of sports games.

Yeah... Sports games are my videogame Kryptonite.

Lessons can be learned from this. For GSLs, the motivation to play certain genres of games can dramatically affect achievement point earning efficiency. Sports games is my weak genre; so playing sports games will take more time and motivation than any other genre available. For others, it may be first person shooters, platformers, or even the inability to tolerate Japanese visual novels that will handicap a person from finishing a game as fast as the rest of the competition. Knowing what your teammates will and will not do is key to team managers who usually dictate who gets what games at particular points of a GSL schedule.

Participants playing games they may not like is a normal occurrence in any GSL. Find me any GSL discussion and I could quickly point out people complaining about what they're playing with very little effort. But just because it is a necessary evil does not mean it would be wise to grind out your weak genre until you're ready to gouge out your eyeballs. In short, two tidbits of information to consider.

1. A GSL participant can earn points more efficiently playing games in their strong genre. Although I personally had tons of point potential in the sports category, the most efficient use of my time came from platformers and first person shooters, in which my strengths are. On top of that, I actually enjoyed what I was playing, so motivation was high.

2. If a GSL participant must earn points in their weak genre don't stay with the genre for too long and break it up with games that you may like. I made the mistake in my final GSL to complete seven basketball games in one stretch. Doing so killed my motivation to revisit the genre for a short period until it became a point necessity for individual placement. If you're not motivated, you're not scoring points. Toss yourself a bone and play something you like in-between personal grinds.

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