I wonder about the value of selling a game to your audience via the technology it uses. I’ve been reading feedback on the Force Unleashed demo and many people confuse the middleware technologies we used in the game. They’ll call Euphoria the “Euphoria Engine” that handles AI and material physics. Not entirely true. Euphoria only handles a small part of AI behaviors, it doesn’t deal with attacking, defending or pathfinding. It’s used mostly to react to damage and physical forces inflicted on them or to jump out of the way of oncoming hazards for example.
I don’t blame the players for being incorrect, it’s really difficult to keep all of this technical information straight. Is it worthwhile to include technology related information in communications with players? What might be better is to describe and show the experiences possible in a game but leave out the technology that makes this happen. I think at the end of the day, while players may get some satisfaction from being able to talk the talk, what they ultimately care about is walking the walk, i.e. playing the game and enjoying it for what it is.
© 2008, Reid Bryant Kimball. All rights reserved.