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Game difficulty voting

AuthorMessage
Jblacq
402,252
Jblacq
Posted on 14 August 19 at 19:56
We all know ratio doesn't equate directly to difficulty. It instead equates to rarity. So, how do you know if a game is difficult or not? Right now, word of mouth?

What I am suggesting is add something similar to the game rating UI, but for game difficulty. It would be great if we could have it on a scale of 1-10, but if we need to reuse the 1-5 I'd understand.

In order to make this work, I think we need at least these 2 things:
1) You can only vote if you have started the game.
2) We can filter the votes to see 'all votes' and 'votes only by people who completed the game'

The first one is obvious, if you haven't played the game you can't say if it's difficult or not.

The reason for the second one is to be able to filter out the people who may have either started the game to troll the votes (that wouldn't happen, right? wink), but also people who finished the game may have input on end game achievements that others who have only started the game haven't. (Maybe there's a level select and it's easier after leveling up, or things like that.)
Ahayzo
530,596
Ahayzo
Posted on 14 August 19 at 22:35
I feel like difficulty is something so incredibly subjective that any rating of it is effectively worthless.
#mentallypudding The artist formerly known as alklein92201
Homunculus Fury
Posted on 14 August 19 at 22:47
I agree with Ahayzo. So many times I've read in WT's and solutions about how easy something was that I've struggled with. As you've eluded to, a good indicator of how difficult something is a the amount of gamers who have finished. Time would be another but I found that to be subjective myself as a lot of gamers have a real hard time with guesstimating how long something takes to do.
Jblacq
402,252
Jblacq
Posted on 14 August 19 at 23:09
I agree difficulty is subjective, but game ratings are subjective too and we have those 5 stars on the page as well. The hope is that the more people that vote on the difficulty would give an real impression on the actual difficulty of the game.
Homunculus Fury
Posted on 14 August 19 at 23:52
Maybe a 5* rating on difficulty?
Ahayzo
530,596
Ahayzo
Posted on 15 August 19 at 00:11
Ratings are subjective, but I personally think that the acceptable tolerance level for subjectivity is very different between asking "will I like the game" "will I even be capable of playing the game".
#mentallypudding The artist formerly known as alklein92201
NBA Kirkland
1,064,203
NBA Kirkland
Posted on 15 August 19 at 00:52, Edited on 15 August 19 at 00:53 by NBA Kirkland
+1

I would also add the 'friends only' filter like the completion time charts have.

And you would want this to be a chart like the estimated completion times so you can quickly get a feel for the high, low, mean and average votes.

For some a game is a 2/10 and for some it's an 9/10 and that is fine. Looking at the graph of the votes will still give people a general idea of how tough a game will be for them especially when they compare it to other games in the same genre that they have played.

Trolling is also an issue, but those tend to be either 1/10 or 10/10 and can be ignored by the viewer.

Not forcing people to complete the game before they can vote is a must. If a lot of people get frustrated and quit, I'd like to know.
@NBAKirkland
Sashamorning
1,684,337
Sashamorning
Posted on 15 August 19 at 01:10
+1

Ratings are subjective, but so are game review votes. I may think something is a 5-star rating, but the community thinks it's a 3. The site shows 3 stars.

There are a number of low or lowish ratio games out there. (I'm looking at you, NEOGEO), and ratio enough isn't enough information dinnertime to gauge how difficult something is. I think community feedback would be helpful (and if not, it could be ignored).

I'm likely to use this when looking at games.
Brevity is the soul of wit. ~W.S. / I guess I'm not witty. ~Sasha
Awoo
1,401,794
Awoo
Posted on 15 August 19 at 01:55
God forbid I compare the two sites, but XBA has for a very long time had completion difficulty ratings in their road maps. These ratings are set by the road map writer, are entirely subjective and often hilariously skewed, but they're still pretty helpful to get a general idea of whether a game leans more on the easy or hard side.

I think something like this is no less reasonable than the completion estimates we already have. If it's displayed in the same way, where you can see how many people voted for each option, then just as with the time estimates, troll votes should be obvious and irrelevant.

Would give +1 if I still could.
What can change the nature of a man?
Shadykilla420
601,637
Shadykilla420
Posted on 15 August 19 at 03:19
I think this would be an interesting feature as well.
Shinnizle
755,309
Shinnizle
Posted on 15 August 19 at 04:32
Awoo said:
God forbid I compare the two sites, but XBA has for a very long time had completion difficulty ratings in their road maps. These ratings are set by the road map writer, are entirely subjective and often hilariously skewed, but they're still pretty helpful to get a general idea of whether a game leans more on the easy or hard side.
Aren't those usually based on a poll thread on the game forum?
Broke is a state of wallet. Poverty is a state of mind.
x Mataeus x
885,144
x Mataeus x
Posted on 15 August 19 at 09:09
I understand that the difficulty rating of a game is meant to be implied by the TA ratio, but it's not always the case as we know.

I'm happy to stick my vote in for this, with one sensible option: Just like voting on solutions, you can only rate the difficulty of a game if you have an achievement for it in your tag.

As other people have said, everything is subjective to the individual playing, so that's not an argument. For me for example, Downwell is a 1.5/5 on difficulty. Dark Souls remastered is a 5/5. Others will have the fact opposite experience and that's fine, just as they will with star ratings.

So yes, I fully support difficulty ratings on games.
"I gotta be honest, entering a bunch of 25 character codes to have gear spit out of the magic box kinda sucks" - Rista B
Poopdog M60Riot
Posted on 15 August 19 at 09:34
Could be useful. Maybe be able to see where people voted just like completion times.
Banana Big Boys
Johnny Sinister
Posted on 15 August 19 at 09:38
+1 from me as well.

I actually enjoy the challenge of tougher games and seek them out. We all know that GWG and Gamepass yield higher than normal ratios, but there are also cases in which I have played and completed super difficult games (Plutobi for example) that has a lower than expected ratio due to the limited number of players on site. In fact, part of the issue that so few people 'played' it is due to the unusual difficulty in unlocking the first achievement. You can see an unusually high split between TA and Xbox live unlock rates on this game for that reason.

Anyways, if trying to determine real difficulty for a game, I find myself having to interpret info from a variety of sources such as ratio, gamers played/gamers completed, forum discussions, solutions, etc. Although I know a difficulty rating for a game would be subjective and imperfect, I can see it painting a picture that would be helpful in making a reasonable determination.
DrMmmPie
238,159
DrMmmPie
Posted on 15 August 19 at 14:38, Edited on 15 August 19 at 14:39 by DrMmmPie
I've been thinking about this for most of the day. What you could do is have 1-10 star systems(no half votes) With giving the options of why you rated it the way you did. I do feel you should have more than 1 achievement unlocked. maybe a % of the base games total achievements.

Examples of Hard Cheap AI, Bad Controls, Not enough info of what to do when doing quests,

Examples of Easy, Short game all story related, Some/all of the achievements can be cheesed

Examples of neutral. Most come with natural progression, just takes time, Played the game before(If a Remastered/re-release)

Ahh I don't know.
This post might contain spelling mistakes or grammar errors, I'm dyslexia. Also this may have a different opinion to yours.
Ahayzo
530,596
Ahayzo
Posted on 15 August 19 at 14:46
You can't require a percentage, then you lose a lot of the higher difficulty votes for whom it was too difficult to unlock that many.
#mentallypudding The artist formerly known as alklein92201
Awoo
1,401,794
Awoo
Posted on 15 August 19 at 15:23, Edited on 15 August 19 at 15:25 by Awoo
Shinnizle said:
Awoo said:
God forbid I compare the two sites, but XBA has for a very long time had completion difficulty ratings in their road maps. These ratings are set by the road map writer, are entirely subjective and often hilariously skewed, but they're still pretty helpful to get a general idea of whether a game leans more on the easy or hard side.
Aren't those usually based on a poll thread on the game forum?
Are they? Maybe I'm wrong, I've never written one. Either way it's still a small sample size for most games, I'd assume.

Anyway, there's no reason to overcomplicate it. Like I said, I think it would be best treated exactly the same way as completion estimates. Which for the record do require you to complete the game before being allowed to vote, something that should also apply here. If a lot of people quit early, the ratio will already reflect that. This should be for those who saw things through to the end and are qualified to judge the completion.
What can change the nature of a man?
Shinnizle
755,309
Shinnizle
Posted on 15 August 19 at 15:34, Edited on 16 August 19 at 03:43 by Shinnizle
Awoo said:
Are they? Maybe I'm wrong, I've never written one. Either way it's still a small sample size for most games, I'd assume.
I know there is a stickied "Achievement Difficulty Rating" thread on each game's forum (or at least most of them). I figure whomever makes the Road Map uses that metric, but maybe they don't.
Broke is a state of wallet. Poverty is a state of mind.
planting42
1,297,855
planting42
Posted on 15 August 19 at 16:45, Edited on 15 August 19 at 16:46 by planting42
+1. Completion Estimates are as fluid a measurement as this suggestion... and this would offer the same chart (I'd hope) where folks can see how the game was seen by the community.
NBA Kirkland
1,064,203
NBA Kirkland
Posted on 15 August 19 at 16:58, Edited on 15 August 19 at 16:58 by NBA Kirkland
Awoo said:
Like I said, I think it would be best treated exactly the same way as completion estimates. Which for the record do require you to complete the game before being allowed to vote, something that should also apply here. If a lot of people quit early, the ratio will already reflect that. This should be for those who saw things through to the end and are qualified to judge the completion.
I'd really rather have people get to vote without completing the game 100%. The difficulty vote asks "how difficult is this game for you?" not "how difficult was it to 100% complete this game?" I don't want to shut out people who just don't care about completing games or just gave up because it got too frustrating.
As we know ratio is influenced by lots of other things so that it is often not a good indicator of difficulty.
@NBAKirkland
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