HomeĐời SốngFarm story 2™

Farm story 2™

14:53, 30/03/2021
September 28, 2015Blogs, Digital Gamesevil, f2p, farm story 2, game design, money, morality, patreon, psychology, reinforcement, storm8Gregory Avery-Weir

There is evil in this world. Some is systemic, titanic, nigh-insurmountable. And some is petty, banal, all the more troubling for its triviality. Farm Story 2 is the lesser evil. It’s the whispering, cloying, harrying serpent at the heel of gamers.

Bạn đang xem: Farm story 2™

Farm Story 2 is evil in a way that inspires not rebellion, but pity.

This is a well-crafted game. There are barely any bugs and the art is attractive sầu if generic. The bug-eyed chickens are charming, & it has a scamp of a kid who is adorable until the third or fourth time they implore you khổng lồ install another of Storm8’s insipid games. I don’t have sầu a quarrel with any of the (mercifully uncredited) people who worked on the game. My issue is with the environment who produced such a work. Let’s explore the darkness at its depths.

Farm Story 2‘s evil is based in its exploitation of humans’ psychological & neurological weaknesses in the pursuit of profit without providing anything of worth in return. Most games take advantage of our mental foibles in order to lớn provide brain-stem-màn chơi rewards, but in exchange they provide fun, or escapism, or enriching story & worlds. FS2 provides only the opportunity lớn reward its creators with your money in order to lớn get temporary respite from discomfort. “Give me money,” FS2 says, “& you can make this stop.”

The Weaknesses of Humanity & the Exploitation Thereof

It’s pretty well-known among muốn game design circles that our brains have sầu certain fundamental bugs. Taking advantage of our logical fallacies và psychological quirks can let us vì pretty cool things, but we game designers have a responsibility to lớn vày things that are mutually beneficial lớn our customers và our wallets. The patron who requested this article asked about Farm Story 2, “Please help me: why can’t I stop?” Here’s why.

Farm Story 2 is a fairly standard business management game, sans the business management. You plant crops và buy animals, and then you return periodically to lớn collect the sản phẩm (in the pigs’ case, you collect babé from their living bodies). You replant some of the seed, feed the animals, & fulfill random “orders” for assorted product. Sometimes you use buildings khổng lồ convert raw materials into more complex materials. There are no maintenance costs, no market trends: nothing to plan for or strategize about. You just tap all the things that you can tap, then wait until you can tap more things.

Processing Fluency

There’s a base-level pleasure to lớn this action. The processing fluency theory of aesthetic pleasure is a theory of psychology that says that things we can easily underst& or process are aesthetically pleasing. We enjoy understanding what’s going on and seeing the pattern in it. By making a simple system that we can demonstrate understanding of, even when tired or busy, FS2 ties into lớn that base desire.

To take full advantage of this, a designer needs lớn disguise the source of the understanding. To put it another way, if you realize that you understvà something just because it’s simple, you’ll be less satisfied. This ties inlớn Raph Koster’s Theory of Fun, which proposes that the fun in games arises out of mastery of complex systems. FS2 provides Nilla Wafer levels of simple satisfaction, but its systems aren’t complex enough for actual mastery.

Mere Exposure

Not to worry, though. By the time you realize how shallow the game is, it’s hooked you with another flaw in your brain patterns: the mere-exposure effect. You like things which are familiar, even if only through repetition. In Farm Story 2, wheat takes 1đôi mươi seconds lớn grow. Corn takes 240. Each time one of these crops completes, you get a push notification: “You have sầu Wheat (sic) ready khổng lồ harvest!” If you respond to lớn even half of these notifications, you’re opening the game up every few minutes. This game will become familiar khổng lồ you before you realize it has little to lớn offer.

You’ll also become familiar with Storm8’s other products. As mentioned earlier, the characters in the game will implore you to lớn install other games by the same company. These notices appear in your quest log alongside actual game goals, và these requests are in addition to the more normal interstitial advertisements that appear every time you open the game. As a result of these advertisements, you’re more likely lớn download those games if you come across them elsewhere. Even if you don’t recognize them, hey’ll seem pleasant, thanks khổng lồ the brainwashing you got from Farm Story 2.

Xem thêm: Giới Underground Là Gì - Underground, Rap Underground Là Gì

Partial Reinforcement

As you get inlớn the game, you’ll soon run out of space in storage or on your land. In order to lớn nâng cấp or expvà, you need certain resources that you can only get from fulfilling orders or clearing underbrush (which consumes tools)1. These resources, however, arrive sầu randomly. They only sometimes appear, & when they vì they are selected from a long menu, which means that you only rarely get the specific resource you want.

This takes advantage of the Partial Reinforcement Extinction Effect, or PREE. If you put a pigeon in a box & let it pull a lever to lớn get food, it will pull that lever quite a bit. However, if that lever only sometimes gives food, the pigeon will pull the màn chơi more urgently, & it will take longer to give up on pulling the lever when the food stops coming.

Farm Story 2 trains you khổng lồ keep playing it in the same way that Pavlov trained his dog to lớn drool on comm&.

Escalation of Commitment

If you play Farm Story 2 or a similar game, you probably recognize these things. You’ve sầu already realized that the game’s appeal lies solely in its simplicity và familiarity, and you’ve sầu probably already felt uncomfortable with how excited you get when the tedious order fulfillment finally gives you the lvà permit or seven that you need. You want lớn stop. Why don’t you stop?

Because you’ve already spent so much time on it. You’re suffering from escalation of commitment. Related lớn the behavior surrounding sunk costs, this phenomenon means that we don’t like abandoning behaviors that have sầu already cost us effort and resources. We don’t want khổng lồ leave sầu a bad movie because we’ve sầu already paid for the ticket. We don’t want to lớn chiến bại an auction even when bidding exceeds an item’s value. We don’t want to lớn leave sầu Vietnam giới because so many people have already died.

Because you have invested time in this game, quitting it feels like an admission of failure. However, every additional moment spent playing it is another moment lost, increasing your sunk costs. The sooner you quit, the less you will have sầu lost.

The Designer’s Responsibility

As game designers, we must give sầu as much as we take. Especially when trying to lớn run a business, we choose to lớn take money, time, và effort from our players. We have sầu a responsibility to lớn give something in return. Whether it be mastery over a genuinely interesting challenge, good feelings, an enriching moral question, social interaction, or just a pleasant story, we need to lớn make sure that our relationship with players is mutual & nurturing, not exploitative.

In exchange for your time reading this post, here is a gift. If you want an easy, dễ thương game about tapping a bunch of things, making numbers go up, và getting push notifications that things are ready khổng lồ be collected, tải về Happy Street. It provides the same brain-stem attractions discussed above, but in exchange you get dễ thương characters, silly story, & a good feeling instead of a bad taste in your mouth.

Now I have lớn go and uninstall Farm Story 2.


This article was commissioned by a patron. To support my work, sign up for my Patreon & help me continue producing writing lượt thích this.