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Nevermind comments on Justified Expectation of Pleasant Surprises - Less Wrong

10 Post author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 15 January 2009 07:26AM

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Comment author: Nevermind 15 January 2009 02:50:09PM 8 points [-]

Well, being a game developer, I can tell with some authority: you are wrong. It would (generally) mean error in game design if the abilities were hidden. Why? Because then the player couldn't plan anything. If some or all abilities are hidden at the beginning, that forces the player to choose based on incomplete knowledge, and more often that not, leads to regrets: "I wish I purchased that ability which turned out to work in nice synergy with others, and not this one which turned out to be useless..". Especially if there's some finite pool of resources used to purchase these abilities. And that is not fun, even if surpising.

A rule of thumb in game design is to never make players make uninformed choices, as that only leads to frustration. This beats any possible pleasant surpise that might be there.