FUNDAMENTALS OF GAME DESIGN, SECOND EDITION

DIRECT CONTROL INTERFACES

In a direct control user interface, the player steers the avatar around the game world, rather like driving a car. On a console controller, the joystick or D-pad nor­mally manages this; on a personal computer, the mouse or keyboard steers the avatar as in an action game. This is now the standard for action-adventure games, whether in third-person or context-sensitive camera models. A few more traditional adventure games have started to adopt a direct-control interface also. Grim Fandango from LucasArts is one that uses a context-sensitive camera model, which is rather unusual. See the sections "Screen-Oriented Steering" and "Avatar-Oriented Steering" in Chapter 8, "User Interfaces."

MOVEMENT SPEED

No matter what camera model or user interface you choose, you should implement both walk and run movement modes so the player can move slowly through unfa­miliar spaces and quickly through familiar ones. If the game requires the player to move repeatedly through areas he already knows well, the player may find
watching the avatar walk deliberately from place to place boring. On the other hand, if you offer a rich, detailed world and your game expects the player to exam­ine everything closely for clues, the user interface must make slow and accurate movement possible.

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FUNDAMENTALS OF GAME DESIGN, SECOND EDITION

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