Gamers have been pitting their wits and skill against computers since the earliest days of video games. The levels of difficulty were pre-programmed, and at a certain point in the game, the computer was simply unbeatable by all but the most gifted gamers.
Over time, the concept of difficulty levels evolved. For example, “Madden” NFL Football games have four different levels (ranging from Rookie to All-Madden) that make running plays more difficult, while first-person shooter (FPS) games like “Duke Nukem 3D” follow the same type of tiered difficulty (ranging from Piece of Cake to Damn, I’m Good) that makes it tougher to stay alive and kill enemies.
While creating different difficulty experiences has long been a discussion topic, something new happened in 2000 when “Perfect Dark” was released for the Nintendo 64. Like GoldenEye (one of the most beloved games on the Nintendo 64), “Perfect Dark” was an FPS that you could play with or against friends. Unlike “GoldenEye,” however, “Perfect Dark” offered the ability to add up to 8 computer-controlled enemies (called Simulants) to matches, with each Simulant having a customizable difficulty level (ranging from MeatSim to DarkSim).
Continue reading at AdAge.com