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  1. #1
    Administrator Rossignol's Avatar
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    Games that are purely about exploration

    Ok, so I was just looking at this http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/foru...-am-a-tiny-man

    And that game is basically just exploration. It's fun. Which led me think: are there any other games which are just exploration? There's a couple of other side-scrollers I guess, but what others? Anyone got any suggestions?

  2. #2
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Faldrath's Avatar
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    Only one that comes to mind right now is Noctis.

  3. #3
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus ColOfNature's Avatar
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    Googling for exploration games reveals this old thing. Seems no-one was listening!
    ...common and uninteresting.
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  4. #4
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    What do you mean by "pure" exploration? Exploring environments to find unusual combat encounters would be pure exploration in my view. Do you mean exploring environments with absolutely nothing interactive to come across? No levers to pull, no enemies to kill, no items to pick up? Exploring a world in a game where movement is the only thing you can do as a player?

  5. #5
    Administrator Rossignol's Avatar
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    @Wizardry, yes I was thinking about just movement.

  6. #6
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    Ah, right. One more clarification. Do you mean "games" that only feature movement through a game world? Or do you mean games where you can get enough exploratory satisfaction from moving around the game world while skipping/avoiding all other interactive aspects?

  7. #7
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus vinraith's Avatar
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    Dear Esther springs to mind. In general yes, there aren't nearly enough of such things.

  8. #8
    Activated Node TimA's Avatar
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    What about civilian flight simulators?

    Many, many hours I've sunk in to flight sims, picking a location in the world that took my fancy and seeing what I could. Even with combat sims I often just take off by myself and fly around to enjoy the scenery.

    Suppose the same could go for railway sims or ship sims... And of course, Orbiter, which is truly wonderful for solar system exploration...

  9. #9
    Administrator Rossignol's Avatar
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    Dear Esther is a good one, Vinraith.

  10. #10
    Obscure Node TheTourist314's Avatar
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    Small Worlds is pretty fun. The music in the first area sounds like Scott Walker, the green area sounds like Sigur Ros.

  11. #11
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus The JG Man's Avatar
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    I know this gets to a case of 'Well if you do X and Y..." but what about Minecraft? Put it on that difficulty where enemies can't harm you and then just go for a wander. And obviously the best part is if you're getting bored, you can create a new world and start again. Not to mention, when you load up the world at start, you do essentially just explore.

    Are there any space sims with a focus on exploration? I imagine with the right spectacles, you could have something pretty amazing.

  12. #12
    Obscure Node
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rossignol
    @Wizardry, yes I was thinking about just movement.
    This seems needlessly narrow to me. I'd include any game where exploration of an enviroment was the primary or sole focus. Though I suppose it's a short leap from there to including all roguelikes.

    Anyway:

    Seiklus
    Knytt
    Within a Deep Forest

    just off the top of my head, of varying levels of purity.

  13. #13
    Obscure Node dyst's Avatar
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    I feel like a scumbag for posting it, but Journey is coming out on PSN in the next year or so and that is all about exploration. It also looks fantastic. I know it's not really relevant to this forum but it's still worth mentioning I guess. Here's a thing about it. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x2dCU...feature=relmfu We need to get a petition going for a PC version.

    For the PC, I can only really think of Knytt.
    Last edited by dyst; 25-06-2011 at 06:44 PM.

  14. #14
    Journey looks awesome. A PC port would be a day one purchase for me.

  15. #15
    Administrator Rossignol's Avatar
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    Journey does look awesome, but I think those dudes are part owned by Sony, so there will never be a PC release.

    @Wizardry: well I don't want to lock it down to *just* movement, but I am thinking games that you can get a kick out of exploring the world and see what is out there, rather than being funnelled and channelled and controlled in terms of how you play. No linear game is truly exploration based, for example.

  16. #16
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus laneford's Avatar
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    Flower

    Pilotwings (N64) had a purely exploratory 'mode' within it where all objectives were removed and you could simply fly about. I remember that being lovely.

  17. #17
    Activated Node CWalker's Avatar
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    I would second a vote for flight simulators. Plopping yourself at a random airport then touring the scenery is a lovely therapeutic thing. Unless you're my dad, in which case you take off then immediately urge into the nearest mountain.

    Also, that freeware pioneer alpha thing that came out, with spaceflight and planet surfaces and such.
    http://pioneerspacesim.net/

  18. #18
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    @Jim, Metroid Zero Mission and Super Metroid might fit that criteria. Sure, there's combat, but apart from the minibosses or bossfights, the games are more about navigating the environment with the tools you're given and unlocking new ones as you go. By that vein, what about Batman Arkham Asylum- you're basically handed a whole island and when you've finished the storyline it's yours to explore as you will.

    Edit: Didn't include Metroid Fusion because it seems to be much more linear and fight-y than the previous games.

  19. #19
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Unaco's Avatar
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    Endless Ocean on the Wii.

  20. #20
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    Oh, I forgot Aquaria, but I've only played a little of it, so I don't know if it gets very fight-y later on.

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