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Harry Potter:Hogwarts Mystery和Fortnite模式差异分析

发布时间:2018-07-25 09:17:37 Tags:,

Harry Potter:Hogwarts Mystery和Fortnite模式差异分析

原作者:Chaim Gartenberg 译者:Willow Wu

《哈利·波特:霍格沃茨的秘密》,这款设定在JK Rowling魔法世界中的新手游从本质上来说并不是一个糟糕的游戏。理论上来说,一款可以上魔法课程、使用咒语、交友,还包含了新哈利·波特故事的霍格沃兹RPG游戏应该是粉丝们梦寐以求的产品。出问题的不是这些设定,我对于这款游戏的最大意见其实是跟《堡垒之夜》有关,我会慢慢解释的。



如果是在三四年前,《哈利·波特:霍格沃茨的秘密》在谷歌商店和App Store都会很吃香。在那个时期,《糖果传奇》和《部落冲突》(还有很多很多套皮游戏)这样的F2P游戏占据了畅销榜前排,玩家们刚开始接触计时器、付费系统这样的惩罚性机制——如果玩家在游戏中卡关并耗尽了生命/机会,要一直等到计时结束才能继续尝试。当然,越到游戏的后阶段,等待的时间就越长。有些玩家就会打开钱包,用真钱来加速这个过程。

《哈利·波特:霍格沃茨的秘密》的问题出在哪里?玩五分钟,等一个小时,不然你就得买钻石氪金,不骗你们!现在卡在Devil’s Snare上,我要在这里呆上7个小时了呵呵。


这种设计在如今并没有以前用得那么频繁了,但是《哈利·波特:霍格沃茨的秘密》仍然“沉浸在过去”。你想跟周围的东西互动?扣能量!每个玩家的能量都是有限的,全部耗尽后需要一个小时才能完全恢复。(你可能只要玩几分钟就没能量了。)玩家当然可以选择使用宝石来恢复能量,但是游戏对赠送宝石也不是那么慷慨。除此之外,想继续游戏的方法只有花真钱了。剧情任务也有时间门槛,要等好几个小时才能开启,除非你愿意用宝石立即激活。另外,宝石和金币还需用在装扮方面,所以玩家想要真正体验游戏的话,很多情况下都要用到这些有限的免费资源。除此之外,开发商Jam City在游戏平衡方面看似也没花多少心思,游戏都发行好几周了,还有很多玩家在论坛上抱怨这方面的问题。


这二者之间的关键区别可以概括为:《堡垒之夜》是鼓励玩家玩游戏,而《哈利·波特:霍格沃茨的秘密》是鼓励玩家消费。这一点从《堡垒之夜》巧妙的盈利机制设计中就可以看出——玩家可以通过购买通行证(Battle Pass,相当于季卡)在游戏中逐渐解锁各种奖品,还有额外的装扮物品(不可免费获得)。重点在于玩家根本不需要额外付费就能体验所有的核心机制,付费玩家在竞争中也不具有绝对优势。

当然,你的角色可能看起来比我的免费角色酷多了, Twitch Prime用户还可以装扮成John Wick的样子,下降轨迹自带炫酷的彩虹效果,但是这并没有对游戏竞争产生什么实际影响。就目前的情况而言,当我有几分钟的空闲时间时,我更有可能拿出我的手机,打开《堡垒之夜》,快速地来一轮,而不是选择《哈利·波特:霍格沃茨的秘密》,因为前者不会因为玩游戏而惩罚我。而且这种方式更符合PC、主机玩家的消费观念——他们在大部分情况下都是一次性提前付费,然后畅快地玩下来,不会遇到任何时间、付费门槛。《堡垒之夜》已经证明这种消费模式移动设备上是非常可行的。

有些事情是涉及到游戏本身的特性。对于Jam City来说,要创造出引人入胜的哈利·波特故事,同时还要防止内容消耗过快是一个挺艰难的任务,不像高重玩性的《堡垒之夜》,开发者们只需加入一些新皮肤就能让玩家高兴了。但这也引出了一个问题:《哈利·波特:霍格沃茨的秘密》为什么要设计成F2P模式呢?说是游戏,但它更近于互动式电子小说。而HP粉丝们最喜欢干的事就是买各种各样与HP有关的书,这是有事实为证的。又或者为什么不借鉴下任天堂的做法,就像《超级马里奥跑酷》一样,将游戏分为两部分——前期F2P,先让粉丝体验下魔法世界的新开端。然后把剩下的设定为一次性付费解锁,玩家一旦被前面的内容吸引住了付费自然就不在话下。这看起来就是个挣大钱的有效办法啊?(虽然对于任天堂来说成果并不是非常理想。)




Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery, a newly released mobile game set in JK Rowling’s magical universe, is not inherently a bad game. On paper, a Hogwarts RPG where you can take classes, sling spells, make friends with fellow students, and experience a new Harry Potter story is a great thing. The issue with the game isn’t that premise; my biggest problem with Hogwarts Mystery is actually Fortnite.

This will take some explaining. Three or four years ago Hogwarts Mystery would have fit comfortably in the Play Store and App Store. During an era when free-to-play games like Candy Crush and Clash of Clans (and the many, many clones) ruled the roost, and players were first introduced to the punishing idea of patience or payment systems, where you’d essentially hit a wall in gameplay until a timer ran out, allowing you to pay again. And of course, the farther you progressed in a game, the longer the mandatory toll booths would start to be, inviting the players to spend a couple real-world dollars to expedite the process.

What is going on with this Harry Potter #HogwartsMystery game though? Legit the game lets you play for five minutes before making you wait an hour to play again or buying more gems!
Currently stuck in Devil’s Snare & I’ll be here for the next 7 hours ahahahahahelpmeahahah
— Sophie (@trafotoz) April 26, 2018

That structure doesn’t dominate the mobile space the way it once did — but Hogwarts Mystery is still stuck in the past. Want to interact with almost anything in the environment? That’ll cost energy, which players only have a limited amount of, and can take up to an hour to fully refill once exhausted. (This can happen after just a few minutes of gameplay.) Players can, of course, spend a second currency — gems — to refill their energy, but gems are rewarded sparingly. Unless you’re willing to pay up some actual money, in which case you can continue on your adventure. Story missions are also time-gated, requiring hours-long waits to start unless you’re willing to invest the gems to activate them immediately. Plus, gems and coins (a third in-game currency) are also needed to customize your in-game character with new outfits and items, making it all the more frustrating to be forced to use the limited supply of free ones to actually play the game. Alas, developer Jam City hasn’t done much to address the balance, with users still constantly complaining about it on the game’s subreddit, weeks after launch.

And again, for a certain era of mobile gaming, this would have been par for the course. Years ago, I would have likely praised Hogwarts Mystery for offering a strong, story-based spin in a world of mobile free-to-play games that focused more on competitive pay-to-win multiplayer or endless identical puzzles. But then there’s Fortnite, whose grinning mascot sits on my home screen, quietly damning almost everything about Hogwarts Mystery.

It’s a difference that can be summed up simply: Fortnite, first and foremost, encourages players to play, while Hogwarts Mystery seems more interested in getting players to pay. Much has already been written on the brilliance of Fortnite’s monetization scheme, which uses the Battle Pass concept to allow players to gradually unlock rewards for a fixed, seasonal price, along with additional cosmetic items that can also only be bought outright. The key part of this is that it never asks players to pay extra to enjoy the base game, or offers any competitive advantage to those who spend.

Sure, your avatar may look infinitely cooler than my free, Twitch Prime awarded commando guy as you plummet off the bus in a technicolor rainbow dressed as a suspiciously John Wick-looking avatar, but it never affects anything that happens in the game. As it stands, I’m far more likely to whip out my phone to try to work in a quick round of Fortnite when I have a few free minutes than Hogwarts Mystery, because Fortnite doesn’t seem to want to punish me for the act of playing. It’s an ethos more familiar to console and PC gamers — who (in most cases) get to pay a single, upfront price for their entertainment, and then enjoy it without constant nickel-and-diming. It’s something that Fortnite has shown can be incredibly viable on mobile.

Some of this is just the nature of the game. It’s obviously much more difficult for Jam City to create compelling story content for Harry Potter that players will quickly consume than it is for the far more replayable Fortnite to add a few new skins and call it a day. But it also begs the question of why make Hogwarts Mystery free to play at all? It’s already closer to an interactive novel than it is an actual game, and if the Harry Potter franchise has proven one thing, it’s that fans will buy a lot of Harry Potter books. Or why not take a page from Nintendo’s book, and offer something like Super Mario Run, where the initial gameplay is free to try, and then offer the full, unlocked experience for a single set purchase? Give Harry Potter fans a taste of the few first chapters of a new Wizarding World story, and then charge for the rest once they’re hooked? It sounds like it would practically print money (although it’s worth noting Nintendo didn’t see “acceptable profit” from Super Mario Run.)

Games with limited systems like this that put up barriers on how long people can play are inherently bad. I’ve played a borderline irresponsible amount of Fire Emblem Heroes over the past year, and that game checks almost every predatory free-to-play gaming box in the book — limits on earning rewards, limits on how long you can play, and a slot machine-esque gacha system that encourages spending money far more than Hogwarts Mystery ever does. The difference is that Fire Emblem Heroes has learned from the lessons of earlier free-to-play titles and seems to respect my time, with the developers doubling stamina, lowering costs of in-game actions, and recently, removing stamina requirements entirely for most of the game’s tougher battles, letting users try to solve the maps as many times as they want.

Right now, Hogwarts Mystery is stuck in an older era of mobile, one that’s content to make lazy, cheap cash-ins on popular franchises and use cheap monetization tricks to squeeze out some extra money from its player instead of offering a strong or compelling gameplay experience. But games like Fortnite are finally showing that mobile gaming is changing, and if Hogwarts Mystery wants to achieve some kind of endurance like the iconic books whose name it trades on, it’ll need to consider some changes of its own. The solution isn’t exactly magic.(source:the verge