Should games have health upgrades? They just seem like ways to make the game easier.
Like for nonlinear interconnected games it can make returning to older areas less repetitive, since you can breeze through everything without much risk and avoid content fatigue.
It is kind of a cheap way of making a person feel like they’re getting better at the game, because they’ll improve in consistency, because their mistakes lead to less deaths.
In a lot of games it’s not really the type of thing you need to improve, same with damage output. You can keep both consistent and probably save a ton of time balancing. Like most action games don’t need it, but they have it anyway for some reason. MGR was ahead of the curve with a weapon that started weak and you paid to make weaker.
Health increases can be temporary, which is a nice change of pace, like in the souls series, or mario. Health increases can be used to bypass obstacles that require a certain amount of health, though this doesn’t always work out the best.
Some games start you off at a lower health value than they’re really balanced for and expect you to raise your health or defense to get to the intended level.
Health increases are really a question of pacing and function. It serves a function in some games but not others.
Health inherently is also kind of a depth/difficulty question, like how little do you need to stress the challenges of the game, and how much can you grant without trivializing a challenge by allowing a player to tank it without regard for consequences? Too little and the game cannot have bigger and smaller consequences for actions, everything is equally lethal. Too much and the consequences of most actions can be ignored since they’re insignificant. If the game’s only way of preventing you from attaining the objective is to reduce your HP until you die, then too much health makes it so you nothing can stop you, and you don’t need to learn how to bypass the things preventing you from winning.
Upgrading Equipment: what’s the point? (especially in dark souls)