People in both the past and future really must’ve had a hard time keeping their kids safe from ledges, since a lot of times they just aren’t there. Or did someone just happen to remove all the railings in the general area? Well either way, workplace safety wasn’t on a lot of people minds I guess.
In addition to keeping an eye on your enemy, player also must pay attention to their health. Sometimes, there another thing to keep track of that’s throw in: the battlefield itself. In this post, ledges and the like.
Sometimes a giant wall (visible or invisible) just won’t get the job done (or make any sense in the setting) and this is where pits and ledges and cliffs come into play. In real life, you wouldn’t want to jump down a hole without knowing where it’s going right? It offers a more “dangerous” (I don’t really have the correct word right now, Walmart’s out of stock) barrier than some static brick wall, since if you fall down a hole, it’ll probably hurt.
This is also where you can fufill the “dangerous” aspect of ledges. Damaging or outright killing the player character as a way to say “Hey, don’t go here”. As said earlier, these dangerous ledges can affect gameplay by punishing players too focused on one aspect of the game, whether it be the enemies, or their health, if the players aren’t wary of their surroundings they might fall off the edge or step into a trap. Platformers being the most obvious example, some non-platformers include Hyper Light Drifter (above), Bastion, and Lost Planet 2.
Sometimes the game is full of ledges and some other times having the character die from a simple fall doesn’t make sense. Whatever the reasons, in this case ledges aren’t necessarily deadly, but turned more into a kind of nuisance players to try to avoid (ex: Mario Kart games). These kinds of ledges simply take the fallen player and put them back on the map after a short delay, which then could have them get killed or lose 1st place.
In the game pictured above, Warframe, when falling off the various ledges of the map, the screen goes black and resets the player back at the last spot they stood at before falling off, playing the landing animation as if they fell from a great height, but entirely unscathed.
Either type still allows for the player to make errors, but one simply carries out the effects (partial or full) of falling off very high ledges. Both serve as a way to tell players “Watch Your Step” much better than an invisible wall can.
Oh boy, ‘ledges’ doesn’t even sound like a word to me anymore.