Food in Games
The holidays are a time for family bonding, reflection and eating too much food. This has me thinking about the different implementations of food in games.
In Pillars of Eternity, food is a buff. It provides stat bonuses or resistances to party members. It’s also a completely optional mechanic for most difficulty settings. I dig food in games when it used like this and explore other examples.
When Snake popped a ration, he’d regain health. When Simon ate a plate of chicken he’d regenerate HP, as well. A number of games use food as a health-restoring mechanic; this always struck me as odd. There’s something unrealistic about it, though it doesn’t detract from a game’s enjoyment.
Realism can go too far. Ultima: Exodus for the NES required your characters to eat unless they die. This became an unnecessarily painful maintenance mechanic, like repairing your weapons.