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An action game is a video game genre that emphasizes physical challenges, including hand–eye coordination and reaction-time. The genre includes a large variety of sub-genres, such as fighting games, beat 'em ups, shooter games and platform games. Multiplayer online battle arena and some real-time strategy games are also considered action games.
In an action game, the player typically controls a character often in the form of a protagonist or avatar. This player character must navigate a level, collecting objects, avoiding obstacles, and battling enemies with their natural skills as well as weapons and other tools at their disposal. At the end of a level or group of levels, the player must often defeat a boss enemy that is more challenging and often a major antagonist in the game's story. Enemy attacks and obstacles deplete the player character's health and lives, and the player receives a game over when they run out of lives.
Alternatively, the player gets to the end of the game by finishing a sequence of levels to complete a final goal, and see the credits. But some action games, such as early arcade games, are unbeatable and have an indefinite number of levels; with the player's only goal being to get as far as they can to maximize their score.
The action genre includes any game where the player overcomes challenges by physical means such as precise aim and quick response times.Action games can sometimes incorporate other challenges such as races, puzzles, or collecting objects, but they are not central to the genre. Players may also encounter tactical and exploration challenges, but these games first-and-foremost require high reaction speed and good hand–eye coordination. The player is often under time pressure, and there is not enough time for complex strategic planning. In general, faster action games are more challenging. Action games may sometimes involve puzzle solving, but they are usually quite simple because the player is under immense time pressure.
Players advance through an action game by completing a series of levels. Levels are often grouped by theme, with similar graphics and enemies called a world. Each level involves a variety of challenges, whether dancing in a dance game or shooting things in a shooter, which the player must overcome to win the game. Older games force players to restart a level after dying, although action games evolved to offer saved games and checkpoints to allow the player to restart partway through a level. Increasingly, though, some games allow for 'resurrection' or 'cloning' and the opportunity to regain lost items upon death for a certain sum of ingame currency, typically increasing exponentially the more times the player dies. The obstacles and enemies in a level do not usually vary between play sessions, allowing players to learn by trial and error. However, levels sometimes add an element of randomness, such as an enemy that randomly appears or that takes an unpredictable path.
Levels in an action game may be linear or nonlinear, and sometimes include shortcuts. For levels that require exploration, the player may need to search for a level exit that is hidden or guarded by enemies. Such levels can also contain secrets—hidden or hard-to-reach objects or places that contain something valuable. The prize can be a bonus (see below) or a non-standard exit that allows a player to access a hidden level, or jump ahead several levels. Action games sometimes offer a teleporter that will cause the player's avatar to re-appear elsewhere in the same level. Levels often make use of locked doors that can only be opened with a specific key found elsewhere in the level.
Action games sometimes make use of time restrictions to increase the challenge. However, game levels typically do not react to time passing, and day/night cycles are rare.When the timer expires, the player typically loses a life, although some games generate a difficult enemy or challenge. If the level is completed with time remaining, this usually adds to the player's score.
In most action games, the player controls a single avatar as the protagonist.The avatar has the ability to navigate and maneuver, and often collects or manipulates objects. They have a range of defenses and attacks, such as shooting or punching. Many action games make use of a powerful attack that destroys all enemies within a limited range, but this attack is rare.
Players may find a power-up within the game world that grants temporary or permanent improvements to their abilities. For example, the avatar may gain an increase in speed, more powerful attacks, or a temporary shield from attacks. Some action games even allow players to spend upgrade points on the power ups of their choice.
In action games that involve navigating a space, players will encounter obstacles, traps, and enemies. Enemies typically follow fixed patterns and attack the player, although newer action games may make use of more complex artificial intelligence to pursue the player. Enemies sometimes appear in groups or waves, with enemies increasing in strength and number until the end of the level. Enemies may also appear out of thin air. This can involve an invisible spawn point, or a visible generator which can be destroyed by the player. These points may generate enemies indefinitely, or only up to a certain number.At the end of a level or group of themed levels, players often encounter a boss. This boss enemy will often resemble a larger or more difficult version of a regular enemy. A boss may require a special weapon or attack method, such as striking when the boss opens their mouth or attacking particular part of the Boss.
In many action games, the avatar has a certain number of hit-markers or health, which are depleted by enemy attacks and other hazards. Sometimes health can be replenished by collecting an in-game object. When the player runs out of health, the player dies. The player's avatar is often given a small number of chances to retry after death, typically referred to as lives. Upon beginning a new life, the player resumes the game either from the same location they died, a checkpoint, or the start of the level. Upon starting a new life, the avatar is typically invincible for a few seconds to allow the player to re-orient themselves. Players may earn extra lives by reaching a certain score or by finding an in-game object. Arcade games still limit the number of player lives, while home video games have shifted increasingly to unlimited lives.
Action games take place in either 2D or 3D from a variety of perspectives. 2D action games typically use a side view or top-down view. The screen frequently scrolls as the player explores the level, although many games scroll through the level automatically to push the player forward. In 3D action games, the perspective is usually tied to the avatar from a first-person or third-person perspective. However, some 3D games offer a context-sensitive perspective that is controlled by an artificial intelligence camera. Most of what the player needs to know is contained within a single screen, although action games frequently make use of a heads-up display that display important information such as health or ammunition. Action games sometimes make use of maps which can be accessed during lulls in action, or a mini-map that is always visible.
Action games tend to set simple goals, and reaching them is obvious.A common goal is to defeat the end-of-game boss. This is often presented in the form of a structured story, with a happy ending upon winning the game. In some games, the goal changes as the player reveals more of the story.
Many action games keep track of the player's score. Points are awarded for completing certain challenges, or defeating certain enemies. Skillful play is often rewarded with point multipliers, such as in Pac-Man where each ghost that the avatar eats will generate twice as many points as the last. Sometimes action games will offer bonus objects that increase the player's score. There is no penalty for failing to collect them, although these bonus objects may unlock hidden levels or special events. In many action games, achieving a high score is the only goal, and levels increase in difficulty until the player loses. Arcade games are more likely to be unbeatable, as they make their money by forcing the player to lose the game. On the other hand, games sold at home are more likely to have discrete victory conditions, since a publisher wants the player to purchase another game when they are done.
Action games have several major subgenres. However, there are many action games without any clear subgenre, such as Frogger , as well as other types of genres like Adventure or Strategy that have action elements.
Action-adventure games mix elements of both action and adventure genres, examples include The Legend of Zelda, Assassin's Creed and Grand Theft Auto series.
Beat 'em ups are games that involve fighting through a side-scrolling stage of multiple adversaries, using martial arts or other close-range fighting techniques.
Fighting games feature combat between pairs of fighters, usually using martial arts moves. Actions are limited to various attacks and defenses, and matches end when a fighter's health is reduced to zero. They often make use of special moves and combos. There are both 2D and 3D fighting games, but most 3D fighting games largely take place in a 2D plane and occasionally include side-stepping. They are distinct from sports games such as boxing and wrestling games which attempt to model movements and techniques more realistically.
Maze games such as Pac-Man involve navigating a maze to avoid or chase adversaries.
Platform games involve jumping between platforms of different heights, while battling enemies and avoiding obstacles. Physics are often unrealistic, and game levels are often vertically exaggerated. They exist in both 2D and 3D forms.
Rhythm action games challenge the player's sense of rhythm, and award points for accurately pressing certain buttons in sync with a musical beat. This is a relatively new subgenre of action game.Rhythm games are sometimes classified as a type of music game.
Shooter games allow the player to take action at a distance using a ranged weapon, challenging them to aim with accuracy and speed. The setting of shooter games usually involves military conflicts both historical and fictional, with World War II being a very popular setting for a game in the shooter genre, as are recent conflicts in the Middle East. Shooter games do not always involve military conflicts; other settings include hunting games, or follow the story of a criminal (as seen in the popular Grand Theft Auto franchise). Although shooting is almost always a form of violence, non-violent shooters exist as well, such as Splatoon which focuses on claiming more territory than the opposing team by covering the playable environment with colored paint or ink. This subgenre includes first-person shooters and third-person shooters, as well as a plethora of other shoot 'em up games taking place from a top-down or side-view perspective.
Survival games start the player off with minimal resources, in a hostile, open-world environment, and require them to collect resources, craft tools, weapons, and shelter, in order to survive as long as possible. Many are set in procedurally-generated environments, and are open-ended with no set goals. Survival games often feature a crafting system, which allows players to engage in tool-making to convert raw resources into useful items such as medical supplies for healing, structures which shelter the player from a frequently hostile environment, weapons to defend themselves with, and tools to create more complex items, structures, weapons and tools. The survival game genre may overlap with the survival horror genre, in which the player must survive within a setting traditionally associated with the horror genre, such as a zombie apocalypse. A specific subgenre of survival game that frequently includes shooter game elements is the battle royale game, which is almost exclusively multiplayer in nature, and eschews complex crafting and resource gathering mechanics for a faster paced confrontation game more typical of shooter games.
Studies have shown that people can improve their eyesight by playing action video games. Tests by scientists at the University of Rochester on college students showed that over a period of a month, performance in eye examinations improved by about 20% in those playing Unreal Tournament compared to those playing Tetris .Most arcade games are action games, because they can be difficult for unskilled players, and thus make more money quickly.
Researchers from Helsinki School of Economics have shown that people playing a first-person shooter might secretly enjoy that their character gets killed in the game, although their expressions might show the contrary. The game used in the study was James Bond 007: Nightfire .
A major turning point for action games came with the 1978 release of the shoot 'em up game Space Invaders , which marked the beginning of the golden age of arcade video games. As a result of Space Invaders' mainstream success, the industry came to be dominated by action games, which have remained the most dominant genre in video arcades and on game consoles through to the present day. Along with Space Invaders, Asteroids from 1979 and Pac-Man from 1980 have also become iconic examples from the action genre. Robotron: 2084 , released in arcades in 1982, also became a classic in the shooter subgenre.
In much the same way Space Invaders set the template for the shooter game subgenre,Donkey Kong did the same for the platform game subgenre when it released in 1981. 1984 saw the emergence of martial arts themed games, with Karate Champ establishing the one-on-one fighting game subgenre, and Kung-Fu Master laying the foundations for the side-scrolling beat 'em up subgenre.
Radiant Silvergun is a shoot 'em up developed by Treasure. It was originally released in Japanese arcades in 1998 and subsequently ported to the Sega Saturn later that year. The story follows a team of fighter pilots in the far future who are battling waves of enemies summoned by a mysterious crystal dug up from the Earth. The player hosts an arsenal of six different types of shots to choose from, and a sword to destroy nearby targets. The stages are tightly designed to present players with scenarios that can be approached differently with the various weapon types.
In video games, a boss is a significant computer-controlled enemy. A fight with a boss character is commonly referred to as a boss battle or boss fight. Boss battles are generally seen at a climax of a particular section of the game, usually at the end of a level or stage, or guarding a specific objective; the boss enemy is generally far stronger than the opponents the player has faced up to that point and is usually faced solo. A miniboss is a boss weaker or less significant than the main boss in the same area or level, though more powerful than the standard enemies and often fought alongside them. A superboss is generally much more powerful than the bosses encountered as part of the main game's plot and often an optional encounter. A final boss is often the main antagonist of a game's story and the defeat of that character provides a positive conclusion to the game.
Shoot 'em up is a subgenre of video games within the shooter subgenre in the action genre. There is no consensus as to which design elements compose a shoot 'em up. Some restrict the definition to games featuring spacecraft and certain types of character movement; others allow a broader definition including characters on foot and a variety of perspectives.
Action-adventure is a video game genre that combines core elements from both the action game and adventure game genres.
Bio-ship Paladin, known in Japan as Space Battleship Gomora (宇宙戦艦ゴモラ), is a 1990 horizontally scrolling shoot 'em up arcade game. It was later ported to the Sega Mega Drive. While the game is essentially a standard horizontally scrolling shoot 'em up, it has an innovation that makes it unique in the genre. The player flies a spaceship which has the standard forward guns to be found in all horizontal scrollers, but it also possesses a weapon that can be manually targeted with a crosshair, in the same manner as in the game Missile Command. This allows the player to fire in any direction with pinpoint accuracy, and adds an extra level of strategy to the game. The game saw an almost arcade perfect port on the Sega Mega Drive. What few changes there were actually enhanced the look of the game such as added parallax scrolling backgrounds in level 2.
Shooter games are a subgenre of action video game, which often test the player's spatial awareness, reflexes, and speed in both isolated single player or networked multiplayer environments. Shooter games encompass many subgenres that have the commonality of focusing on the actions of the avatar engaging in combat with a weapon against both code-driven NPC enemies or other avatars controlled by other players.
Tomohiro Nishikado is a Japanese video game developer. He is best known as the creator of the shooter game Space Invaders, released to the public in 1978 by the Taito Corporation of Japan, often credited as the first shoot 'em up and for beginning the golden age of video arcade games. Originally Nishikado wanted to use airplanes as enemies for Space Invaders, but would have encountered problems making them move smoothly due to the limited computing power at the time. Humans would have been easier to render, but management at Taito forbade the use of human targets. Prior to Space Invaders, he was also the designer for many of Taito's earlier hits, including the early team sport games Soccer and Davis Cup in 1973, the early scrolling racing video game Speed Race in 1974, the early dual-stick on-foot multi-directional shooter Gun Fight in 1975, and the first-person combat flight simulator Interceptor in 1975.
The following outline is provided as an overview of and topical guide to video games:
Cooperative gameplay is a feature in video games that allows players to work together as teammates, usually against one or more AI opponents. It is distinct from other multiplayer modes, such as competitive multiplayer modes like player versus player or deathmatch. Playing simultaneously allows players to assist one another in many ways: passing weapons or items, healing, providing covering fire in a firefight, and performing cooperative maneuvers such as boosting a teammate up and over obstacles.
Twitch gameplay is a type of video gameplay scenario that tests a player's response time. Action games such as shooters, sports, multiplayer online battle arena, and fighting games often contain elements of twitch gameplay. For example, first-person shooters such as Counter-Strike as well as Call of Duty shooters require quick reaction times for the players to shoot enemies, and fighting games such as Street Fighter and Mortal Kombat require quick reaction times to attack or counter an opponent. Other video game genres may also involve twitch gameplay. For example, the puzzle video game Tetris gradually speeds up as the player makes progress.
Beat 'em up is a video game genre featuring hand-to-hand combat between the protagonist and an improbably large number of opponents. Traditional beat 'em ups take place in scrolling, two-dimensional (2D) levels, though some later games feature more open three-dimensional (3D) environments with yet larger numbers of enemies. These games are noted for their simple gameplay, a source of both critical acclaim and derision. Two-player cooperative gameplay and multiple player characters are also hallmarks of the genre. Most of these games take place in urban settings and feature crime-fighting and revenge-based plots, though some games may employ historical, science fiction or fantasy themes.
In games, score refers to an abstract quantity associated with a player or team. Score is usually measured in the abstract unit of points, and events in the game can raise or lower the score of different parties. Most games with score use it as a quantitative indicator of success in the game, and in competitive games, a goal is often made of attaining a better score than one's opponents in order to win.
A side-scrolling game, side-scroller, or horizontally-scrolling game is a video game in which the gameplay action is viewed from a side-view camera angle, and as the player's character moves left or right, the screen scrolls with them. These games make use of scrolling computer display technology. The move from single-screen or flip-screen graphics to scrolling graphics, during the golden age of video arcade games and during third-generation consoles, would prove to be a pivotal leap in game design, comparable to the move to 3D graphics during the fifth generation. Although side-scrolling games have been supplanted by 3D games, they continue to be produced.
Superman is an arcade beat 'em up/shoot 'em up released by Taito in 1988. It is based on the character Superman by DC Comics. The player assumes the role of Superman, who must fight through five levels to make the world safe from the evil Emperor Zaas. The game can be played by up to two players simultaneously, with the second player taking control of a palette-swapped version of Superman.
A strategy video game is a video game genre that focuses on skillful thinking and planning to achieve victory. It emphasizes strategic, tactical, and sometimes logistical challenges. Many games also offer economic challenges and exploration. They are generally categorized into four sub-types, depending on whether the game is turn-based or real-time, and whether the game focuses on strategy or tactics.
A variety of computer graphic techniques have been used to display video game content throughout the history of video games. The predominance of individual techniques have evolved over time, primarily due to hardware advances and restrictions such as the processing power of central or graphics processing units.
A cover system is a video game gameplay mechanic that allows a virtual avatar to hide from and avoid dangers, usually in a three-dimensional world. This method is a digital adaptation of the real-life military tactic of taking cover behind obstacles, for purposes of attaining protection from enemy ranged or area effect attacks, such as gunfire or explosions.
Let's! TV Play Classic is a series of Japan-only plug & play devices developed and distributed by Bandai programmed on XaviX software created by SSD Company Limited in 2006 that contain arcade games from either Namco or Taito, with Namco's being called "Namco Nostalgia" while Taito's are called "Taito Nostalgia". Each device in the series contains 4 games, with 2 being classic arcade games while the other 2 are new games using the original game's sprites developed by Bandai.
This list includes terms used in video games and the video game industry, as well as slang used by players.
Action game - A game characterized by simple action and response gameplay. ... the defining characteristic is that enemies and obstacles are overcome by 'physical' means, rather than involved intellectual problem solving.
2005年5月22日で生誕25周年を迎えた『パックマン』。 ("Pac-Man celebrates his 25th anniversary on May 22, 2005", seen in image caption)