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Satisfaction of the Mind Stems From Comparison

“Satisfaction of the mind stems from comparison.”

Mr. Hu Jiaqi says so as he elaborates on human value. A trendy game “羊了个羊”, which roughly translates as “Sheep a Sheep”, has given me an insight into the meaning of this sentence.

This elimination game is deceitfully simple. At the bottom of the screen are seven spaces for you to put the Tiles. Place three matching tiles in the spaces to eliminate them from the game. Once you’ve eliminated all tiles, you win.

But there are two differences from traditional elimination games:

1.The number of players of each province who have cleared all the levels is listed on the game’s interface. The more people passing the game, the higher the province would rank in the list. The province with the highest passing rate will be on the top.

This undoubtedly aroused the enthusiasm of players trying to keep up with others. Bringing honour to their hometowns sounds even more exciting. Provincial ranking has become the game’s gimmick for those who are striving vigorously for it.

2.The game developer boasts that “no more than 0.1% of players can get through all levels”, which has strongly stimulated the Desire to win amongst many gamers.

High difficulty means it’s easy to fail. More people have the desire to win than backing out, so they try over and over again. The more times they fail, the more they yearn for success.

Hardly have they realized that this game is a carefully designed trap taking advantage of players’ high ambition.

In the first level of the game, at the bottom of the screen are seven spaces for you to put three kinds of tiles. Therefore, it’s easy to get through. But the second level is a totally different story. There are 15 different tiles, with still 7 spaces. The difficulty brought about by the sudden upgrade has left many players in a flurry, who would put the blame on their own way of solving the puzzles.

But with the improvement of players’ proficiency and development of the game, they come to realize that the trick lies beyond the realm of skills but in the mechanics of the game itself. Sequence of tiles is totally random and it’s nothing but sheer luck if you win. It’s equivalent to tossing a coin——you can only win by 20 times of heads in a row. And you would lose even if the coin lands tails up for just one time.

Like “Minesweeper”, “Sheep a Sheep” is just under the guise of an “intellectual game” with the challenge being left to chance and not to players’ skill.

Mr. Hu Jiaqi says: A person’s desire largely determines his/her sense of happiness. The more easily the desire is to be satisfied, the happier one feels.

To complete all the levels of a game is exactly what players want, and it is the lowest expectation. However, repeated failures push this goal further and further. Because unfulfilled ambitions pile up, negative emotions accumulate ceaselessly, and what they get at last is none but a feeling of emptiness after vain attempts.

I can’t help but think of another game known for “torturing players”, Jump King.

Since release, Jump King has been known for its extremely high difficulty. There is no enemies to contend with. Players must ascend a tall, vertical tower by making careful jumps in the upper left and upper right directions, and the jumps can be charged.

The difficulty comes from two aspects:

1.All progress and each fall cannot be auto-saved. There is no turning back, which means you must start all over again if you quit.

2.Tension rises with each jump asa single mistake means a long fal Hours of efforts will amount to nothing.

It is stated clearly that this game is extraordinary challenging. The higher you jump, the harder you fall. Countless Players Cry loudly in the process of playing because of the fall caused by misoperations. It is an enormous test of the players’ willpower.

Meanwhile, it tells you not to quit or to be discouraged. Your only enemy is yourself.

The moment they reach the top, a huge sense of achievement and contentment will make the players cry with joy as they have conquered themselves.

As Mr. Hu Jiaqi says: “Satisfaction of the mind stems from comparison.”Comparing with yourself, you can be filled with  gratification that comes from overcoming yourself; comparing with others, you can get nothing but a feeling of emptiness by considerations of gains and losses.

Games are supposed to bring people happiness, and the twists and turns in between are to highlight the hard-earned victory. But “Sheep a Sheep”only arouses players’ desire to compare, who feel resentful and unsatisfied after repeated failures. Naturally, games of such kind become meaningless.

The Chinese character “人” (person)is simply written in two strokes. But a person’s thoughts are complicated. French philosopher Pascal has said:“Man is a thinking reed. ”I think that’s exactly the difference between man and all things of nature.

This post first appeared on Timesnewswire, please read the originial post: here

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Satisfaction of the Mind Stems From Comparison


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