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Teslagrad and Progress Gating

Teslagrad and Progress Gating

A little story. I was playing and enjoying Teslagrad. And then, unexpectedly, the pathway to the last section of the game appears to be blocked by a door that can be opened only if you have 15 scrolls, which are hidden and tricky to get collectibles. I had only 3, there was nothing indicating that those scrolls are needed for anything else other than a bonus (for example, there’s a secret ending if you collect all 36 of them, which is perfectly fine). So to get the rest I’d have to go back through all the locations I’ve been to and search for those scrolls. That made me quit in frustration. In retrospect, I have overreacted, however I still don’t agree with the design decision. There’s nothing wrong with the idea of locking content behind collectibles (and to a certain audience there’s nothing wrong in how Teslagrad does it), but I want to talk about how such gating can be made less frustrating for a bigger audience.

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