One great game design trick I heard was that in order to get an idea what your audience expects, is to read bad reviews from you competitors.
I took a quick look at some adventure games’ steam pages and yes, the bad reviews are an amazing place to look for tips on what possible failures or shortcomings might loom in the horizon.
Naturally not all bad reviews are helpful, but reading trough as many as possible will be really helpful.
After looking trough some negative reviews from various puzzle games the trend seems to be that people hate puzzles that you need to brute force or defy logic and the solution seems too random. I will try to make sure that my puzzles are logical and seem like the right and obvious thing to do. I believe that even simple puzzles will provide a good challenge for a player experiencing the world for the first time. I’ll avoid trying to be too smart!
Also I will not be having any pixel hunting in the game. I will do my best to make interactable objects easily spottable.
One feature I am also contemplating (with the game having an open world) is mission markers. I have already decided to clump all the playable content into hubs in the world. So that you never need to hunt for a random small location in the world. But also adding mission markers to the mix should make navigation in the world a lot easier. Even if they were pointing at an area instead of pinpointing the specific object.
Drop a comment on what you like / dislike about adventure games. I would love to make this as smooth as an experience as possible!