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Exploring Possible New Gameplay Elements for Hidden Objects Games

2021-08-12
Exploring Possible New Gameplay Elements for Hidden Objects Games We’re sure you’ve played hidden objects games or encountered in-game mechanics where you’re supposed to find amidst a convoluted mess. Despite being rather mundane and straightforward, playing them can be pretty exciting, thanks to the rather mysterious and compelling stories accompanying them. Some make you a detective, while others put you in the shoes of an investigative journalist or someone who just found themselves in the most inopportune of situations.

However, things have to change, and developers need to innovate and churn out something new. Hidden object games, in general, should go with the tide, lest they will be swept away by the next storm that comes around. With that said, let’s explore new gameplay possibilities and new elements that can be added to future titles.

PvP


Wait, seriously? A PvP hidden objects game? How will something like this even be possible?

Well, let’s put it this way. Tetris was, for years, a single-player experience. Recently, they’ve added PvP into the mix, with Nintendo Switch’s Tetris 99 and the old Facebook Tetris Challenge. Here, you’ll go up against different players in head-to-head or battle royale matchups. They added an all-new dimension to the old classic. Thousands, perhaps even millions, played these games, turning Tetris into a social and competitive experience.

The same can be done with hidden objects titles. Imagine a game where you drop into a lobby, are shown three pictures and told which objects to find. The player who finds the items the quickest wins, while the others earn points depending on their ranking. To be honest, we think there’s a lack of casual and competitive titles out there, and this could fill the void.

HOG titles with minigames


One of the reasons why hidden object games appeal to a lot of characters is their simplicity and straightforwardness. All you have to do is lock your eyes to the images on the screen and try to find items you’re required to. However, like most games, the experience can get rather stale. This is the case even in other games, even those big-budget titles with million-dollar budgets.

With that said, it would be a good idea for HOGs to incorporate puzzles and other minigames fit for casual audiences. Many games already have puzzles wherein you have to fix objects with the items you find, while others use match-3 minigames. It would also be an outstanding idea to add in elements like jigsaw puzzles, tap and timing mechanics, and even design and decoration - just imagine a game wherein you can decorate a home or village with the items you’ve found.

Visual novels with multiple endings


We love visual novels and story-heavy games, and there’s a wide range of them available today. These range from the political sim Suzerain to Japanese franchises like Danganronpa and Steins;Gate.

Since hidden object games focus more on plot and story, it would be a fantastic idea to have a visual novel-like title. Players’ actions will decide the ending, particularly their dialogue options and how well they did in the hidden object scenarios. It will significantly emphasize the story and characters and make players more invested in the plot.

So, what do you think? Should hidden objects games remain at their current state or move forward and incorporate new concepts to get in with the times? Either way, they’re here to stay, but it’d be great to see developers innovate.

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