|Paper Mario - the player can use the|
analog stick to "charge" an attack...
This is easily an area that leaves much room for improvement - in this article, we'll be looking at some ways developers have made steps to allow the player to influence the encounter's outcome by implementing some form of interactivity.
|...or use a single-button press for|
added effects; in this case, multi-jump.
|Sonic Chronicles, on|
the other hand...
Additionally, the controls themselves need to be concise and simple - otherwise the game runs the risk of alienating players that have lower reflexive capabilities. Finally, penalties for unsuccessful execution should be kept to a minimum or, at the very least, balanced against the reward for success in such a way that it doesn't make the game seem "unfair" to the player.
A second example is the (relatively) recent DS game Sonic Chronicles: Dark Brotherhood game by BioWare; while the Paper Mario series treats interactive combat as a bonus, here it's a mandatory part, with a much higher reward/ penalty ratio (excluding the basic "Attack" function, which allows for no interaction).
|...requires complex stylus|
sequences to work.
This sort of implementation has its' own merits - the sense of reward for success is much higher than the Paper Mario system, the interaction feels much more involving and tension is built much better when the risks of failure are so high. On the other hand, this means that the game is inherently less appealing to certain demographics, such as the aforementioned less reflex-capable players.
One thing is certain, though: implementing interactivity in otherwise "static" traditional concepts of gaming is a worthwhile goal which, if done correctly, can breathe new life in tired old staples of certain genres.
* Paper Mario: Virtual Console Official Web Site
* Sonic Chronicles: Dark Brotherhood Official Site