Here’s a fascinating look at creating player feedback in videogames. Daniel Cook looks both at—you guessed it—loops and arcs. And, of course, you can mix the two!
It’s sort of complicated on the face of it, but this is worth a read for aspiring game devs and journos alike.
Arcs are highly efficient at communicating ‘success stories’, a singular path through a system that someone else previously explored. The best teach a lesson, either informative, positive or negative. This is a brilliant learning shortcut but the acquired knowledge is often quite different and less robust in the face of change than ‘wisdom’. With a slight shift in context, the learning becomes no longer directly applicable. It is not an accident that we make the distinction between ‘book learning’ and ‘life experience’.
Cook, Daniel. “Loops and Arcs” (April 29, 2012) <http://www.lostgarden.com/2012/04/loops-and-arcs.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+LostGarden+%28Lost+Garden%3A+Game+Design%29>.