Is it wrong to play video games on Easy Mode?
On the Video Games Realm
The negative criticism that Easy Mode receives from part of the gaming community.
Aug 24th, 2021 | 2 minute read
It is widely known that most video games include 3 main levels of difficulty: easy, normal, and hard. However, some people argue that playing video games on the easiest difficulty constricts gamers from appreciating the overall gameplay. This article is all about why easy mode should be appreciated and why people who play games on easy mode should not be criticized.
With regard to difficulty, developers have various ways of presenting it in their games. Instead of having difficulty setting in their options, games like Marvel's Spiderman, Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor, and the Batman Arkham series have a standard difficulty, where the player learns the game's various mechanics by proceeding the story or by unlocking skills from skill trees. On the other hand, most games include an easy difficulty that doesn't demand players to perfectly learn the game's mechanics. Instead, it presents less demanding gameplay which allows players to proceed with the game's story in a much faster way.
The video gaming community consists of various types of gamers from casual to hardcore, each one looking for different video gaming experiences. For example, there are gamers who play games at their highest difficulty right from the start in order to experience "real challenge" and beat every aspect of the game's system. Another example is completionists, gamers who spend many hours in the same game trying to explore, unlock, and complete everything. By contrast, there is a type of gamers that when it comes to story-driven games, do not want to spend that much time on learning all gameplay aspects and are not driven by the need for defeating the game itself. They just want to sit down, put their stress levels down, play casually, and enjoy the game's story.
Unfortunately, easy mode and gamers who prefer to play that way are constantly receiving criticism from a part of the gaming community, which supports the fact that easy mode is pointless, dull, repetitive, and doesn't allow players to fully appreciate the game's battle system. The most recent example is the article of a Kotaku author posted on 20/10/20 describing Final Fantasy VII Remake's easy difficulty as a "button-mashing bullshit".
For all those who judge easy difficulties, seriously, what is their problem? As stated above, each gamer approaches video games in a completely different way. For hardcore gamers, "easy" is a waste of time, while for casual gamers it could be their preferred way to play. Gamers should respect each other and each other's gaming preferences. Some people appreciate lower difficulties for valid reasons and do not feel the need for the game to be an obstacle to overcome in order to get to experience the story. As an example, Dark Souls' gameplay belongs to that "obstacle" category, and not everyone is a Dark Souls fan.
All in all, there is no point in judging those who do not share the same thoughts of enjoying video games as you. There is not an ideal way of playing a video game, and the need to "prevail over the game's system" is not the preferred way of playing a video game by everyone. Each gamer has not only his own preferences but also the right to approach games any way he sees fit.