“seeing if/how a given designer has managed to kitbash something together from the prefab assets to create a living (or, more often, skeleton-based) location which tells a story. When a location manages something unique despite the limitations of the toolset and studio workflow”
Do you have any image examples of these unique kitbashed locations? Sounds like an interesting design problem/solution.
I am incredibly into this idea, YES. The idea of it being episodic non linear and just scattered episodes that uncover a world the way Bebop does… I want it.
Also I totally go for the progression style too, I’m slowly creeping into completing all the side quests in extremely JRPG Xenoblade Chronicles 2 because it’s satisfying. I should be clearer that I like both approaches, but it feels like a more recent resurgence of games that are leaning on the intrinsic reward of the gameplay itself.