Prepare for unforeseen consequences
(Half Life: Episode Two)

Challenges

Challenge Type Classic Example
Physical coordination
  • speed and reaction time
  • accuracy or precision
  • timing and rhythm
  • learning combination moves
Tetris
Need for Speed
DDR
Street Fighter
Formal logic
  • deduction and decoding
Mastermind
Pattern recognition
  • static patterns
  • patterns of movement and change
Heaven and Earth
Sonic the Hedgehog
Time pressure
  • beating the clock
  • achieving something before someone else
Frogger
Indycar Racer
Memory and knowledge
  • trivia
  • recollection of objects or patterns
You Don't Know Jack
Concentration
Exploration
  • identifying spatial relationships
  • finding keys
  • finding hidden passages
  • mazes and illogical spaces
Descent
Ultima
Doom
Zork
Conflict
  • strategy, tactics and logistics
  • survival
  • reduction of enemy forces
  • defending vulnerable items
  • stealth
Warcraft
Pac-Man
Half-Life
ICO
Thief: The Dark Project
Economic
  • accumulating resources
  • establishing efficient production systems
  • achieving balance
  • caring for living things
Civilization
The Settlers
SimEarth
Creatures
Conceptual reasoning
  • sifting clues
  • detecting hidden meanings
  • understanding social relationships
  • lateral thinking
Law and Order
Planescape: Torment
Facade
The Incredible Machine
Creation
  • aesthetic success
  • construction with a functional goal
The Sims
Mind Rover

from Adams and Rollings, Fundamentals of Game Design