"Trim teh Bush!"
As a player, you reach a point in the game to which you haven’t got the answers or maybe the ‘skillz’, there’s no means provided or there’s some small detail you must have missed to help you progress further. What do you do as a player?
Sift through all inventory and in-game information provisos in context to said issue and try all possible combinations until some goes ‘ting’? (normally your patience and will to live!)
Do you turn the console off and come back with a fresh pair of eyes because you must have missed something so bleeding obvious?
Make a trip to the blessed internet for the truth and technically ‘cheat’?
Reason I ask, from a designers perspective, the game should supply the player with all the right information or tools for the task to produce a ‘rewarding’ conclusion to an issue. Now here comes the bane of my initial question which I suppose from a developers point of view the question should had been raised as thus,
“Do I design this mechanic for myself or for the good of the game and from what point do I cross a proverbial line to really throw a spanner in the works for some god forsaken achievement!?”
"May I take ya seed?"
I suppose I should put this post into some form of context.
So there’s been no posts on this blog for a while because most of my spare time has been eaten up with ‘Nier’, a rather entertaining and criminally ignored Japanese action RPG. For pretty much most of the game I’ve happily stuck with it’s ‘grind’, running around with a cantankerous spellbook who at any opportunity would question my actions good or bad. A foul mouthed, underwearing, hermaphrodite with he/she’s dial cranked up to 11 and some repressed homosexual (OK, I added that last bit) floating skeleton child thing that generally goes all ‘emo’ at any given stages.
I’ve played enough games to understand that loosing hours of my life could be happily spent time else where like reading the Internets wealth of additional information about this game – mostly other peoples annoyance at similar issues – but Nier presented myself with a rather frivolous time sink of ‘cultivation’ as a minor side distraction.
I should had seen the signs, in fact I’d go as far as to say I pretty much ignored this aspect of the game – and any signs – until I was actually required to grow something. If truth be told I felt a bit sorry for Googlywaa’s (the hero of the day!) garden, saving my daughter could wait! Every time I trudged past I knew the garden was in neglect, it was being ignored like a ginger stepchild and really needed to be beaten into shape. So until a quest demanded I start gardening so I got green fingers.
So this is how the basic design/mechanics work,
- Buy seeds and fertilizer from one of the generic denizens.
- Fertilize the ground (3 rows of soil, 5 plots), plant a seed and then water.
- You then leave and harvest, reap the fruits of your labour!
“Simple” it sounds, except for one thing, at what point do you harvest?! You see, there’s no in-game clock, no passage of time except when the narrative changes advancing through the main story arc. So I spent to much time on route, back tracking, popping by, to see if anything had happened, oh! Stuff needed watering and that was about it.
Turn game off, load it back, continue, still nothing… But when I turned the console off and popped by the following day there would be plants, fruit, wheat,… what ever I had previously planted had grown. To which point I actually thought, “that’s quite a nice touch” and then decided that bashing things with oversized weapons was more fun that wasting my time with this distraction any more.
So one then tends to forget or ignore said plants/garden until an NPC requested 10x ‘Pink Peaches’ to which I knew there wasn’t going to be any way of buying the buggers I’d have to grow them to here lies my initial question at the start of this post. I finished the game with 1 quest unresolved which niggled me to say the least enough to search an answer, and this was it,
To get hybrid flowers, you need to plant certain seeds next to each other in the same row. It has nothing to do with watering or fertilizer, but you can add those for more seeds if you want.
- Red seeds next to Gold seeds gives you a 20% chance for Peach seeds.
- Blue next to Gold gives you a 20% chance for Indigo.
- Indigo next to Red gives you a 5% chance for Pink.
- Pink seeds next to Peach seeds gives you a 1% chance for White.
These stats aren’t as bad as they sound if you plant rows of alternating colors, then change your system clock to speed up time.
Since each row has five spaces, plant a row of Blue Gold Blue Gold Blue. Do this for the other two rows.
Your chances will get better for Indigo. Then use those seeds and plant alternating Reds and Indigo to up your chances for a Pink.
Repeat this with Pinks and Peaches if you want to get the achievement for the Lunar Tear (White moonflower).
Should be fairly easy and quick if you’re lucky.
Games designers can be complete bastards at times, How was I supposed to know any of that?!.. Other than growing stupid flowers, the games well worth a look,..