Once we have decided on the game type and what experience we want, it is time to consider the objective. Every game has an end goal or something the player needs to accomplish. Without this, there wouldn’t be much interest in playing our game.
When considering what objective to design, we must be consistent with the player experience we wish to create. We want to design an objective that will make someone happy when they achieve a goal or beat our game. Some common goals and sub-goals include:
- Completing a puzzle in the lowest amount of time possible (Puzzle or strategy game)
- Beating a “boss” to advance to the next level (Action/Adventure game)
- Finding some hidden key or treasure that will unlock more powers or accessories (Action/Adventure game or RPG)
- Completing a side mission (Action/Adventure game or RPG)
- Score the most points in a game (Sports)
Along with the primary objective, a game can also have some sub-objectives. During gameplay, the player must complete these sub-missions (or side-quests). They are crucial because they keep the player engaged and add extra content.
An optional sub-objective will offer an interested player more things to do in our game and allow a casual player to complete the game more quickly. Carefully crafting sub-objectives will make the game more fun for the player.
Remember to keep the objective consistent with player experience and the game’s theme!
This screenshot is from the Pokemon series Sword and Shield. The series’ overall objective is to defeat different Gym Leaders to become the Pokemon League Champion. The sub-objectives throughout the series (and most Pokemon games) are to collect Pokemon. To beat the Gym Leaders, you must use your collected Pokemon to fight the Gym Leader’s Pokemon.
The screenshot highlights the optional sub-objective of battling the Pokemon Landorus. But, collecting powerful Pokemon like this one help the player with their primary objective of defeating the gym leaders and obtaining the title of Pokemon League Champion.