The very first video game I ever owned was NHL ’96 for the Super Nintendo.
The goalies, being controlled by the AI, auto-tracked the puck, and would do their damndest to stop goals. Problem is, by creating a custom character, you can create a character that can move faster than the goalies. Thus, you could simply grab the puck, skate straight at the goalie, then curve a little to the left or right, and shoot. Because your character moves faster than the goalie, it is literally impossible for that goalie to move fast enough to stop the shot.
This resulted in hilarious games where I could score once every ten seconds, if not more.
Point is, I wasn’t playing the game within the rules laid out by the game. I was, in fact, playing against the game itself, abusing and exploiting the rules to crush the crap out of it.
Hands up, who’s played D&D? Alright, hands up, who’s intentionally exploited the rules, or even the GM, for personal gain?
The difference between playing a game, and playing against a game is a distinction that is nearly completely lost on long-time gamers. Beating the game on its own terms, and beating it by bending or outright breaking its rules are really the same thing, aren’t they? Either jump through the hoops the developer made for you, or make your own hoops and jump through those instead. (more…)