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First let me get two points to establish before I go with this thread

>immersion doesn’t equate to good game design

>getting a player immersed in a game has little to do with graphics

The actual key components in immersion are AI and animation. The reasons are the fact that complex AI builds complex ways of fulfilling and interacting with goals in videogames, and animation brings a level of believability for what’s happening in games further allowing players to find enjoyment from the visuals.

AI provide players with a mountain of methods to solve problems and play the games they like any way they want due to how they respond to the things around them, for example if I have an enemy mob in a game and simply give a region on that ai that when hit does more damage than attacking any other region suddenly the player can decide and plan how they want to kill a mob than simply mash buttons until victory. This is already seen in games like Tarkov or the stalker series where a single bullet well positioned enough can clear a target in due time encouraging players to get better as they play and that’s just the beginning. Generally you can expect that the more complex an ai is not just in its available reactions but how it interacts with other ai to provide more and more options for gameplay until you can wind up with exploits for these mechanics by players whom have enough playtime to have learnt and excelled in them. Like mob farms in terraria, or megabases in games as dense in opportunities like dwarf fortress.

Animation also improves the immersion a game can provide to a player simply by providing a level of believability to the events on screen, it may not seem like much but simply having a door open by having an ingame model animated to physically open the door rather than just having it open goes a long way especially with simpler animations for things like crafting objects in tlou2, mounting yourself on horses within rdr2, seeing zombies actually take time to bleed out in left 4 dead or just watch mobs fucking go wild on each other in monster hunter. It all makes a word feel alive and dense with detail that simply can’t be faked with only high resolution textures and meshes.

In conclusion a game maker when designing a world to be immersive should focus primarily on the animation and AI components of said game. It goes a long way at least for me.thanks for reading


Immersion is a nebulous concept and I don't know if there's an agreed-upon definition for it. Your examples sound like emergent gameplay and developer attention to detail, which might be called something like rich or deep gameplay and are rarely found because they require effort. Usually when I see people talk about immersion they use it in the sense of "the game really makes you FEEL like John Skyrim".


Immersion is literally defined as deep mental involvement within something by international definitions. It’s really not that loose of a concept


Also for that effort part it really isn’t as hard as you think
Unless a game is constantly using new skeleton rigs for models which lets face it is almost nonexistent you can expect most animations in games to be recycled for individual types of monsters whom only share some unique animations to differentiate themselves from one another whom can feel different simply by adding real time physics to those animations like what tlou series did. What’s really important is collision detection because Jesus I can’t stress this enough the single biggest limitation of video game animation and physics are the collisions due to problems with using floating point numbers in physics.

To accurately model real world physics in video games simply put 16 significant digits just isn’t enough especially for things like trigonometric based motion, open world games that stretch for thousands of kilometres and simple harmonic motion. Inevitably the precision breaks apart very quickly and it’s why so many games have the exact same bugs with collisions not responding properly, ai not outputting the correct animations or rag dolls flying all over the place


Well no, you can also be immersed in e.g. noxious vapors and/or someone's buttcheeks


You do not need different skeleton actually, as the very purpose of a skeleton is to trivialize animation process. What you would really need is different animations along with a animation engine that would be able to randomize the motions somewhat every time an animation is played by shifting IK targets and applying physical motion to some otherwise unused bones, thus adding variance to the motions. Various physique types can also be accomodated for by dynamically changing the skeleton's bone positions, thus eliminating the need for multiple skeletons for humanoid characters, like with Skyrim skeleton mods that basically give the same detailed skeleton to all vanilla races and let you tweak it through the character customization menu.


Procedural animation has existed for decades man. It just stopped being implemented in games not made by rockstar in the mid 2010s out of sheer laziness


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Immersion has a lot to do with "game feel" and the way that player movement and polish make it feel like you are actually interacting with things. The player avatar needs to feel like it has weight and presence in the world instead of being a floating camera or something.
Adding atmospheric effects helps a lot too.


True. There is a Skyrim mod that basically makes the player to see their own characters' body, but at the same time adds a "virtual neck" of sorts that has a horizontal rotation limit and makes it actually look like you are looking through you character's eyes instead of being just a camera place at their neck level.
The mod in question is IFPV:


jokes on you, JC can do that because he is enhanced.


The real reason for the immersive first person mods for skyrim is so you can see the turbo honkers added by other mods.


Unironically this, plus the added immersion in combat. A modlist with CGO + Blade & Blunt +
Maximum Carnage + IFPV turns the usual slow and floaty as shit fights into visceral skirmishes that might quickly end with either your opponent or your character dead, and the new animations and the camera following your characters' head in first person mode makes the whole ordeal even more immersive, almost to Dark Messiah levels minus the ability to kick. Highly recommend trying this if you already haven't, preferably with a equipment mod like Armoury of Tamriel or Immersive Weapons/Armors installed too.


kek just looked at the user uploaded images on that mod and you weren't lying



Lel, would definitely have spilled my drink if I had one.

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