Gaming Difficulties – What’s The Difference?

Gaming Diifficullties

I was sitting there the other day thinking that when everybody plays the same game they all have different experiences during their playthrough and not one play through is identical. This got me wondering, is it the users approach to the levels, dynamic conditions (night and day cycle) or with the help of AI or co-op players on particular levels? Well all three of those mentioned contribute to personal experiences during games but the other one that really sprung up in my mind was game difficulty.

Let’s Take Some Scenario Examples

Sure enough the difficulty of a game doesn’t affect the actual level design and set pieces of the game but in my experience it drastically changes my play style. For example on easy modes I find myself blasting through levels, being arrogant to enemies foes and meleeing them all (something you can’t just do on the hardest difficulties), spanking teams 6 or 7-0 on FIFA, gaining a 1 minute lead on racing games before lap 1 and so on… to me there is no fun in  this, okay so it gives you the feeling of being ‘king’ but on a personal level I do not feel there is a reward for playing games on easy.

Now let’s switch the above scenario to the hardest difficulties. Instead of blasting through levels I am cautiously hunting for valuable resources such as ammo and medikits, I’m constantly checking my six and every corner I turn I have an itchy finger ready on the trigger, the chance of meleeing an enemy in the face is nigh on impossible during a gun fight, the only chance I’m able to do this is if there are ‘inactive’, in otherwords it’s a set piece where the enemy back is turned deliberately. FIFA games I sometimes go from 2-0 up to losing 3-2 in the dying minutes, as frustrating as this is I actually love it as it adds a sense of real world realism to the game. There’s nothing more boring that having a record of P:38 W:38 D:0 L:0 GF:121 GA:2.

I know not everyone will agree with me, some play games just for fun and an escape from the real world and don’t want to be involved in realistic activities. However we asked the Up Down Left Right community via our Facebook Group to see their thoughts on gaming difficulty. Below is some of what our users said…

Up Down Left Right Community Opinions

I play on normal first so I can enjoy the story with not to much difficulty, then I switch to the hardest difficulty if I like the game enough for another challenging run through

Jay Farmer

I tend to start games on the most challenging difficulty possible, partly for achievements but mostly because i like the challenge! Fallout 4 is a write off in my book thus far though, played it on survival – was hard for the first hour, now its just a breeze more or less which was quite a let down

Michael Triggs

Good topic to choose !
Personally depends on the game in general..
For example gears of war you have to play on normal first to unlock the hardest difficulty otherwise I would session it hardcore straight up !
However if the game has allot of gamer score on I will happily go through normal so I unlock everything and get a chance to look at everything and try and unlock first run through..
Hope this helps out mate !

Jordan Biza Davies

As a little bit of an achievement whore, I do tend to go for the hardest setting as there are achievements to be earned. I don’t tend to want to complete it on normal to only then complete it again to get the “Finish the game” on hard achievement.

Steve Byrne

Second hardest on the first playthrough, with a few exceptions, like Devil May Cry, where the hardest setting is pretty much impossible to mere mortals… Otherwise, hardest on second playthrough. If the games only have EASY/NORMAL/HARD then I choose hard.

Adam Ayers

It’s gotta be go hard are go home, if you don’t feel as if the game is against you is there any point. Plus I love the feeling of putting 70 hours into a game that I thought I loved but ultimately growing to hate the game and anyone involved in the games creation.

Antonio Gambale


Has to be highest difficulty possible, the way games are meant to be played, nothing more satisfying then rinsing a veteran campaign for cod or legendary on halo, just has to be!

Daniel Dwayne Johnson Hart

Thank you guys for the above comments.

It’s interesting to see everyone else’s opinions on gaming difficulties, it seems the majority of the Up Down Left Right community enjoy their games on tougher difficulties. Of course if you’ve all got any additional comments or any other opinion pieces you’d like to ask please let us know.

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About: Jamie B

How do I put this... from the moment I was born I was trying to grab a controller. Gaming is part of my DNA, if I didn't have gaming I honestly don't know what I would do with myself. Nothing beats switching off from the real world and dropping into an apocalyptic world on very hard setting with one bullet remaining, 10 super charged enemies and 10% of health left...

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