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Mechanics the Player Engages With

Mechanics the Player Engages With

Spoilers for God of War: Ragnarok ahead!

I recently played through the new God of War DLC, Valhalla, and came across an instance of the player engaging in the mechanics of the game in a similar way to that of the player-character. For anyone unaware, Valhalla is a Rogue-lite, each time you die you are sent back to the beginning and must attempt to finish a series of challenges all over again. The mechanics and story of Valhalla are based around mastery, so much so that the mantra of the story is “Master thyself”, a line spoken at the beginning of the DLC. In Valhalla, both the player and Kratos are attempting to gain mastery. This is an expert use of design that makes me, the player, feel deeply connected to the game's avatar. Good games have fun and interesting mechanics. Great games have mechanics with which the player and the player-character are both engaging.

Thanks for reading!