Game mechanics of providing better possibilities to the player.

Extending players' options during the course of the game is standard in almost every game genre. It's used to:

  1. diversify — as one of the many ways of mixing things up
  2. reward — players enjoy more power
  3. flatten the learning curve — at first the game is simpler and player can get to know more possibilities afterward

The above design aims can be organically embedded in the dynamics of the game, but an Upgrade is a way of providing them directly by adding just a few rules.

Upgrades are often connected to limiting players' possibilities. When some option is blocked at the beginning of the game, allowing for it later is considered an upgrade.

You can see a good overview of possible upgrades for many different types of music games in Stay in Character character cards.

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