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What creates immersion for you?


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#1 blueturtle

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Posted 10 June 2009 - 10:39 AM

So I was wondering, what kind of details in a game make it immersive for you? What is something you have to have in a game to make it immersive above all else?

For me it is ambient sounds and weather.

I love to run through a forest and hear leaves crunch under foot, to hear birds and frogs in the background. I love the sound of rain falling and the wind howling. Love seeing the rain and snow fall. Love when I can see my characters breath when it's cold. Fog over water is cool as well.

What about you guys?

#2 Beta

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Posted 10 June 2009 - 11:02 AM

Well! it all depends on the situation at hand and the circumstances of said conditions.

When I go out and gather rocks, wood, and other materials; I like ambient music. If I were to solo any quest, I like the idea of in-game music and such! Now! being in a squad, I prefer ventrillo and no music in the background due to the importance of communication, especially during time of war.

Good luck!

P.S.
As far as adventuring out and traveling around, I prefer either type of immersions whether in-game or out of game.


#3 Hamarhand

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Posted 10 June 2009 - 11:20 AM

Weather effects definitely make a big difference to me. It really makes things seem more real when you're walking through a forest and it starts raining (rain that you can both see and hear.) Ambient sounds add a nice touch too (and can provide another layer of atmosphere to an area -- be it peaceful or creepy.) Although I do like high quality background music, I don't know that I'd say that it makes a game feel more "immersive" to me. Usually I turn music in games down so that I can enjoy it, but still hear what's going on around me.

#4 Drakynn

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Posted 10 June 2009 - 12:08 PM

whilst ambient sounds etc can help,it's engrossing gameplay that creates immersion for me...people used to get immersed in games like defender and even space invaders long before pretty graphics and ambient sounds.Secret of Monkey Island didn't have much int he way of sound outside of the music but it was pretty immersive.Poeple used to lose themselves in RPG's like Wizardry and Might and bard's tale back in the day and those were glorified text games heh.

#5 blueturtle

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Posted 10 June 2009 - 02:09 PM

I agree with you that pretty graphics and great ambient sounds are not required for immersion in a game I would offer up that they sure as hell help! lol I mean I loved Bard's Tale and Might and Magic series and the best of all the Baldur's Gate games (as well as Icewind Dale) but they had great sound and graphics for their time. I mean I remember playing Bard's Tale and being happy just to have any graphics at all. Such a step up from Zork. Eye of the Beholder blew my mind back then with it's realistic graphics lol To me sound is a bigger factor for me personally in drawing me into a world. I mean WOW has just ok graphics but the art direction, sense of scale on creatures and buildings and the high quality sound tied me to the world more so than other games. Oh and the dance emotes =D

#6 Therian

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Posted 10 June 2009 - 02:37 PM

whilst ambient sounds etc can help,it's engrossing gameplay that creates immersion for me...people used to get immersed in games like defender and even space invaders long before pretty graphics and ambient sounds.Secret of Monkey Island didn't have much int he way of sound outside of the music but it was pretty immersive.Poeple used to lose themselves in RPG's like Wizardry and Might and bard's tale back in the day and those were glorified text games heh.



This, 100%.

weather effects are ok for the first 10 seconds or so, then rain is just annoying... I always have these at minimum.
ambient sound is ok but I normally end up turning it down very low so It doesnt interfere with other things I want to hear (like npc's talking to me) since I have to keep my master volume at a reasonable level due to 2 other people gaming in the area around me (lots of gamers in my house...last count 6 pc's, 2 xbox 360's).

A well written & executed storyline/questline is always the best way to get me sucked into the game (I remember the days of text based games too.. and 2 word commands like 'go north' 'look vase' 'climb ladder'....ahhh... those were the days.)

thank god for graphics.

#7 Twoboxer

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Posted 16 June 2009 - 11:22 PM

Graphics, ambient sound, music, game play that makes sense . . . they all contribute at different times and in different ways for me. In that way I guess I'm easy lol.

So for me the greater question becomes "What KILLS immersion?"

- Terrain issues are the biggest problem for me. Hills that look climbable, but aren't. Hills that look unclimbable, but aren't. I don't mind a couple of foolers, but no "invisible walls" please. And no having to jump up a 6 inch step.

AoC was a shame in this regard . . . stunning scenery that became absolutely meaningless to game play. Because one month into the game they built invisible walls to keep you on (eg) spiral paths climbing a hill. To force you to deal with the content they had misplaced.

- In similar fashion, ambient sounds that don't match the environment. I'd rather have no rain sound at all than rain in a forest that sounds like rain on concrete.

#8 blueturtle

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Posted 17 June 2009 - 04:23 AM

Graphics, ambient sound, music, game play that makes sense . . . they all contribute at different times and in different ways for me. In that way I guess I'm easy lol.

So for me the greater question becomes "What KILLS immersion?"

- Terrain issues are the biggest problem for me. Hills that look climbable, but aren't. Hills that look unclimbable, but aren't. I don't mind a couple of foolers, but no "invisible walls" please. And no having to jump up a 6 inch step.

AoC was a shame in this regard . . . stunning scenery that became absolutely meaningless to game play. Because one month into the game they built invisible walls to keep you on (eg) spiral paths climbing a hill. To force you to deal with the content they had misplaced.

- In similar fashion, ambient sounds that don't match the environment. I'd rather have no rain sound at all than rain in a forest that sounds like rain on concrete.


Agree with the Conan scenery. I can not stand invisible walls. Drives me nuts. Another thing that kills immersion for me are stupid names. I dont mean names I do not like but names like 'pwnkiller69' 'hellboy1234' and the like. WOW was bad for that. Hate being grouped with a name like that in my party lol

#9 Therian

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Posted 18 June 2009 - 04:49 PM

Agree with the Conan scenery. I can not stand invisible walls. Drives me nuts. Another thing that kills immersion for me are stupid names. I dont mean names I do not like but names like 'pwnkiller69' 'hellboy1234' and the like. WOW was bad for that. Hate being grouped with a name like that in my party lol


I'd really love to see anyone with names not in keeping with the theme be forced to change or be removed. It's not that I'm a RPG purist or anything, as I dont role play beyond using emotes situationally. it's just that 1) names do affect the atmosphere of the game, and 2) some names are just inappropriate for public use period.

#10 melanieshaman

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Posted 18 June 2009 - 05:31 PM

Story, and quests that follow the story... I love a quest chain, or series of quests that tell a story, and develop the overall story. Also, pvp that makes sense to the story, and could possibly effect the world as a whole.

I love the whole WAR thing where you take control of zones... I would love to see 'changing' areas, zones, etc. Maybe a zone control system that when one faction has it (done more to secure it) there is an added quest hub/flight path/etc.

Something a lot of games are missing is ture evolving world. IE buildings that are being built as you arrive in a zone within the first months of game launch that 5 years later are STILL not done LOL (coughsentinelhillcough)

#11 Drakynn

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Posted 19 June 2009 - 07:52 AM

Because someone has to do it....

Sinking in a liquid till I'm covered by it creates Immersion for me.

#12 blueturtle

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Posted 19 June 2009 - 01:09 PM

Because someone has to do it....

Sinking in a liquid till I'm covered by it creates Immersion for me.


LOL was waiting for someone to say something like that ;)

#13 Twoboxer

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Posted 19 June 2009 - 09:27 PM

I gave this one a little more thought, and I think the thing that creates the most immersive experience for me is a good dungeon run in a good group of 6. Because it combines the ambiance with adrenalin and companionship. The essence of the game to me.

The kind of run where you have to use all your tools and all your mates at one time or another. In a place that mostly looks like a cave, not an underground palace. Against mobs that really care about their home and each other, so they have lookouts and mount patrols and won't let a friend die without coming to its aid.

#14 iamurmom

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Posted 21 June 2009 - 08:14 PM

I'm another for the ambient sounds and weather.

But the biggest thing for game immersion for me is non-trivial content. I really hate mobs and only want to use them for tools (loot, learning skills) in-between pvp, but it's just got to be more than 1-3 shotting them. If I gotta kills mobs, I want to have to think hard about what I'm doing.
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#15 rhive

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Posted 22 June 2009 - 12:43 AM

Ambient sounds are great, as is graphics, but neither of these create immersion without a feeling of connection to my character, through gameplay that draws you in.

I have played a game that has arguably the best Lore setting of any game, and amazing graphics, but I felt no connection to my character.

I have played other games that are big on graphics, but for me, I need to care about my pixels, I need to care why they are doing what they do.

One game I left recently had me feeling no connection at all, I felt like it was just "log in, pvp, log off", and I didnt care whether I won or lost.

I cannot put my finger on what it is that games need to make you feel a part of it, but I am sure we can all think of one or two MMOs where the PvE just leaves you feeling dead, and the pvp seems pointless.

I am a pve freak, I love pve, I could dungeon/instance/raid run all day, every day, but, the journey there is more important. If the journey leaves me cold, then I do not care about the end game.

#16 iamurmom

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Posted 23 June 2009 - 11:49 AM

Having thought about this more, I realize that what immerses me most in a game is the feeling of living in my toon's skin. The right face and hair, changing postures, emotes, facial expressions, turning to look at other toons when they come close - these are what really make me feel connected and care enough to want to stick around.

I think, while maybe hardest to do the art for and implement, facial expressions and looking at someone might be the most important of all. How can you feel connected to a toon when the face is static, when they never look at another toon?
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#17 Dendro

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Posted 23 June 2009 - 12:02 PM

Graphics, ambient sound, music, game play that makes sense . . . they all contribute at different times and in different ways for me. In that way I guess I'm easy lol.

So for me the greater question becomes "What KILLS immersion?"

- Terrain issues are the biggest problem for me. Hills that look climbable, but aren't. Hills that look unclimbable, but aren't. I don't mind a couple of foolers, but no "invisible walls" please. And no having to jump up a 6 inch step.

AoC was a shame in this regard . . . stunning scenery that became absolutely meaningless to game play. Because one month into the game they built invisible walls to keep you on (eg) spiral paths climbing a hill. To force you to deal with the content they had misplaced.

- In similar fashion, ambient sounds that don't match the environment. I'd rather have no rain sound at all than rain in a forest that sounds like rain on concrete.


+1

I hate not being able to climb a mountain to get to content and forced to travel up a winding road or completely the other direction.

Hidden content is great I do like the "Climb up to the top of the cliff, walk across the log, to find a hidden mobs or bosses" type lairs.

Music is ok if its not the same song over and over, then I tend to turn down the music and just listen to the enviroment.

Lighting also make for a good game. When travelling to the Deep Dark Forest and find that it is shady at best, kindof kills it for me, not a game breaker but it losses something.

#18 Drox

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Posted 23 June 2009 - 12:28 PM

Immersion to me is when I completely get into a game and can play for several hours having fun not thinking about anything but the game.

What usually does that for me is a great quest. I love it when I find a secret quest from some NPC in the middle of a forest or dungeon and it has a really great story and is all planned and fleshed out really well.

Times like that are when I forget that I'm only playing a game and I really get into my character.

#19 Therian

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Posted 23 June 2009 - 03:55 PM

Immersion to me is when I completely get into a game and can play for several hours having fun not thinking about anything but the game.

What usually does that for me is a great quest. I love it when I find a secret quest from some NPC in the middle of a forest or dungeon and it has a really great story and is all planned and fleshed out really well.

Times like that are when I forget that I'm only playing a game and I really get into my character.


I havent done an instance yet that can hold a candle to a long well constructed quest chain in capturing my attention and making me feel like part of the game.

#20 Fervent

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Posted 23 June 2009 - 06:08 PM

How about "clipping" issues? It drives me crazy to try to run around a tree and get stuck because the tree is 2-3 times bigger than it's graphics. Com on people, don't be lazy, expand the graphics accordingly!!!




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