I was just reading the Jane Jensen interview over at Gameboomers when I spotted the following:
“I think it’s possible for everyone to finish with a couple of caveats – first, that you have access to the internet and know how to search for walkthroughs!”
I think this is a dreadful way to approach the design of a game. I’m not against walkthroughs, which serve a very useful function, but I’m against a designer relying on them as a means for the player to be able to get through the game. It suggests that the game has puzzles that are too difficult or the logic is unclear.
Again, this isn’t a problem in itself, but if you suspect that players are going to become stumped then you should either re-design the puzzle, make it clearer or provide additional clues and/or pointers or employ a hint system which enables the player to keep going, rather than have them leave the game to find a walkthrough.