DGC Ep 164: MYST (part two)

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we continue discussing 1993's MYST. We talk about representing a physical space, the problems of camera and limited modes of interaction, and a host of other topics. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Sections played:
Two more ages!
(Both: Channelwood; Tim: Stoneship; Brett: Spaceship)

Issues covered: turning a lot of valves, making and motivating a physical space, losing a sense of direction due to the lack of camera, having a hard time getting your bearings, filling in the blanks and having your intention mislead you, wanting to know where the touch box is, the importance of camera framing, minimizing the HUD, maximizing the diagesis, simplification as a strength, cameras as challenge or gameplay and that not being designer intent, building out the whole world, when a gun isn't Chekhov's gun, elaborate bits and not being clear on their relevance, caring so much about their story and lore, clockwork/repeatability/knowledge loop, mixing bedrock interactions with new mechanics, using repeatability to encourage experimentation, player goals and implicit goals, reinforcing the sense of a real space, lack of reversability in other adventure games, closed loops and watertight game state, not knowing why a thing is in the game, having those AHA moments, when you get it vs when you don't, making puzzles to keep intruders out, being stuck and not having anything for your brain to chew on, accidental solutions, accidentally solving things, reading player intent, how you rank your design goals, setting the game apart from competitors, Mac vs PC, Brett gives a KH update, humor in puzzle games vs dramatic/horror adventure games, using the books to be invested in the ages, more reading than expected, DGC merch, the creeping sense of dread, Johto region update, Brett being a monster.

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: Devil May Cry, Resident Evil, Sly Cooper and the Thievius Raccoonus, Anton Chekhov, Sierra, LucasArts, Day of the Tentacle, The Witness, Indiana Jones, Tomb Raider, Greta Garbo, HyperCard, Kingdom Hearts: Birth By Sleep, Leonard Nimoy, Waypoint Radio/Lore Reasons, Natalie Watson, Raymond Cason, The 7th Guest, Broken Sword, Monkey Island, Phantasmagoria, Gabriel Knight, Infocom, Enchanter, Zork, HP Lovecraft, The Lurking Horror, Cameron Hass, DOOM (1993), Soma, Amnesia, Halo Infinite, Jamie Zucek, Pokemon HeartGold/SoulSilver, Pokemon OmegaRuby/AlphaSapphire, Pokemon Let's Go Pikachu, Pokemon Sword/Shield.

Next time:
Finish MYST

https://twitch.tv/brettdouville, @timlongojr, and @devgameclub