Video games are mainstream now. For them to be truly successful, they have to appeal to a very wide audience.
This is the reason why the games of today are much easier than the games of yesteryear. It's inevitable; it had to be done. The hardcore are the minority.
And that's why games like Dead Space 2 can't be too restrictive. They can be challenging in some respects but in regards to certain elements, they need to remain accessible. In speaking to OXM UK , Visceral Games' combat and control designer Brian Bartram said the adventure was to initially include a lot of tough puzzles. After saying scaling back during development was a "common issue," Bartram elaborated:
"Some players would love for us to have kept them harder, longer, and more complicated. But when two or three people in a 10 person playtesting session just can't get past it, we have to "nerf" it. But that's just a playtesting example.
Games are frequently a type of benevolent struggle between Design and Production. Design wants a giant game with all kinds of cool stuff in it. Production wants a game that will actually ship. When they compromise, things have to be cut away, reduced, and scoped down. "
See, before there really wasn't much of a struggle. The harder the better, right? That's what all developers seemed to conclude back in the '80s. After all, those who played games would likely play this one game for months in order to get it right; they're dedicated fans, after all, and not many new titles released in any given year. But oh, have times have changed. When the masses are involved, one has to play it safe with the risky, more difficult content.
Dead Space 2 was a great game, though. Don't want to take anything away from it.
Related Game(s): Dead Space 2