Should Games Be Frustrating?

Should Games Be Frustrating?

  • Yes

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Somewhat

    Votes: 2 28.6%
  • No

    Votes: 5 71.4%

  • Total voters
  • Poll closed .
Razbuten makes interesting videos. Yesterday he put out Should Games Be Frustrating? 21m, which aligns nicely with some topics we've had here recently. Have a look and see what you think.

I'm probably in the minority—the poll shall reveal!—being very much against frustration in games.

I'm still annoyed at one of the finest puzzle games, The Talos Principle, for one of its puzzles requiring an outside device—a smartphone—to solve it. I spent a long time on that one, because all the other puzzles in it rewarded exploring options, lateral thinking, 'I wonder if…' approaches. But that one puzzle was not gettable in similar ways to the rest. Grr, very frustrating, an abuse of the player imo.

Many of you will cite challenge and the sense of achievement in getting thru via learning, improvement and perseverance. Totally valid of course, but not what drives my gaming, not what makes it fun for me. I value those traits highly in real life, but not much in gaming. I want a level of challenge which makes it fun and interesting, but notone where I have to work—read slog, grind, repeat—for it.

Anyway, what's your take?

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I would argue that no one likes to be frustrated and that he's misusing the word. People like to be challenged to varying degrees. What would be frustrating for some is invigorating for others. Challenge is an essential part of almost every game. Frustration isn't, but is subjective to the player. Frustrated players quit. Challenged players continue on.

(Note: I'm just going by the title of the video. Don't have time to watch it right now)


Community Contributor
Hmmm... it is possible to get challenged without getting frustrated. If I try something to overcome a challenge and it doesn't work but I see a way that something else could work, I'm not going to feel frustrated. If I don't see a way, I start to get a little frustrated. If I fail five times in a row without seeing a way to get through, I start getting really frustrated... but then I look in some guide.

Some frustration is a good sign. It means the game is giving me a good challenge and not making it too obvious. Lots of frustration, though, just isn't fun. (So it's like salt, which is good to a point, not sugar, which is always better with more!)