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Arcs and Loops in game design
http://www.lostgarden.com/2012/04/loops-and-arcs.html

A great article by +Daniel Cook that investigates the evolving game industry norms where we started with loops (evergreen hobby games: arcade) went to arcs (play once content treadmills aka AAA fps) and are about to come back to loops (mobile games with infinite replayability).

Quote: "(Try) identifying loop and arcs in a popular genre and then removing the arcs to see if what is left stands on its own. What I've discovered is that arcs are almost never critical game elements. You can remove them and still have a playable game."
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Will Blanton's profile photo
 
True - I usually play my favorite games as if they had infinite replayability, like the MGS series - it definitely falls into the arc category, but there are so many ways to tackle a level that it's really fun to play one stage over and over and over almost like a puzzle game.
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