Jaffe Thinks Multiplayer Ranks “F**k Up” Game Design

July 5, 2010Written by Paulmichael Contreras

David Jaffe, creator of the legendary series Twisted Metal and God of War, is always one to state exactly how he feels about certain issues in the gaming industry. This time, that subject matter is multiplayer ranks in games, and how they “f**k up” game design. More on this after the jump.

In a recent twitlonger posting, Jaffe explains why he thinks multiplayer ranking systems involving XP and leveling up can be a bad thing for gaming:

“…it seems there are LOTS of peps who want leveling up and unlocking for the new Twisted Metal. Fair enough. We may do this (still deciding aspects of that system)….it doesn’t seem to matter if these preserving agents fuck up the core product or takes something away from the core product…in the case of games the fun inherent in the core design can get diluted and/or reduced as a player is taking his mind off the core game and staying focused on the meta goal of acquiring rank and goodies and such).”

He compares this kind of system to food preservatives, which do have undesired effects on products as well. But at the same time he does see the appeal as well as the advantages something like this has on the business side of the industry. DLC released months after a game is out does encourage people to spend more time on the same game, which, as Pachter recently theorized, is partially to blame for weaker sales last month.

What do you think? Are there examples of games where a multiplayer ranking system just kind of seems tacked on because it’s a popular thing to do? Or are these things generally a good thing to have in most every game? Let us know in the comments below!