Many games allow players to see the configuration of game elements, and their individual values, using the same syntax as the game state uses. The easiest examples are from non-computerized board games where physical game elements are used to store the game state. Card games also make use of Direct Information as players typically see their own cards and the cards that have been played but card games can also force players to communicate or gain information in indirect ways, e. g. bidding in Bridge.
Example: Classical board games such as Go and Chess have their game state stored by the spatial relations of the physical game pieces and the board.
Direct Information can easily be implemented by using tangible game elements to represent values in the game state; if the only way to manipulate the value is to manipulate the game element, information about it is automatically direct. Other ways of implementing Direct Information depend on how much information, and what kind of information, the game designer wants players to be able to give or receive. Social Interaction and Negotiation can allow players to freely choose the amount and type of information, and also allow them to use direct or Indirect Information as they wish or if they wish to mix them. Direct Information in these cases decreases the possibility of Bluffing. Bidding and Trading typically has a minimum set of information that needs to be communicated, typically number and kind of game elements although this can be expanded greatly or reduced to only a number of game elements.
Other ways of giving players Direct Information include game elements such as Alarms and Traces or parts of the interface such as Status Indicators, Goal Indicators, Progress Indicators, and Outcome Indicators. Game elements that can be used for either Direct Information or Indirect Information to support Puzzle Solving include Helpers and Clues.
Since Direct Information easily allows players to make assumptions about the game state, the pattern supports Perceivable Margins and Stimulated Planning. Since it minimizes risks for misunderstanding information, Direct Information can be used to support Perfect Information although Direct Information is not guarantee of its presence.
Direct Information can eliminate the possibility for Uncertainty of Information or Imperfect Information due to risks for misunderstanding. However, since these patterns can occur for several other reasons, e. g. lack of information or by use of Bluffing, the patterns can co-exist.
Modulated by: Save-Load Cycles
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