Illusion of Control

The game cheats or hides information to make you think you're better than you actually are.

Games may make you think that you are getting better and better, when in reality you are just unlocking better tools inside the game. Perhaps the game doesn't even have a component of skill at all and it just makes you feel like you have some amount control over the outcome. If a game is doing this, it is trying to make you feel like your apparent skill is greater than your actual skill.

For example, a claw machine doesn't always grab at full force, it cheats and makes it impossible to grab an item until it decides it's time to give a prize. This makes you feel like you did a good job at aiming the claw and that you are getting better, even though it's random chance.

Another way that games manipulate information to make you feel more skilled than you actually are is by grouping players into isolated worlds. These are sometimes called "shards". In a competitive game with a single leaderboard, it would be very discouraging to have a rank of 124,204. Instead, what games do is they break people up into tiny groups or shards. Maybe only a few thousand people per shard, and you only compete with those people. Your rank may be 283 which sounds a lot better. Being the 283rd best player in the world is pretty encouraging, but the game doesn't tell you that you are only competing against a small percentage of the players. This makes you feel like you are more skilled than you actually are.

Games may also randomize the difficulty of the game to make it more interesting. This is why you may get an easy level immediately following a difficult level. If the difficulty secretly becomes easier, you may feel like your skill has increased when it really hasn't and this feeling of control may get you to play the game more often.
Citations and SourcesWikipedia :: Illusion of control


"It’s established for a fact that the dice multiplier is predetermined, this is possible to be verified when a player uses the well known air plain mode , which basically is the player turns on airplane mode while the game is on and rolls the dice , takes note of the result each time and when the notification “no internet “ pops up , the person just needs to disinstall the game while airplane mode is still on. After reinstalling you know already which results the dice will give you"

Dragon POW! Dragon POW!
"Game divides players so that it seems that you have a better score than you actually do in "World" leaderboard tabs."

Idle Angels Idle Angels
"You gradually unlock new systems to progress further. You're actually punished if you try to spend too early, like before account level 80."

Super Snail Super Snail
"You are placed in a server which is 1 of 8 that compete in a dimension which is what wars are based around. this system makes people feel better starting off new because they are competing with people who started around the same time as them so are at the same-ish strength. leaderboards are also based on either dimension or server depending on the leaderboard so it also makes you feel stronger then u are. Example: 4 my dimension, the 100th strongest player in 1 server vs another is 5mil vs 30mil"

Block Jam 3D Block Jam 3D
"Kind of.. most of the levels in the game rely on the random chance (levels can contain pipes and barrels, both of which mean you can't see the colour of the next block inside), and the blocks within the level are always randomised. It means that whenever you pass a level without using special items you feel very talented, but a lot of the time some levels have to be repeated over and over again for a good randomisation of colours that allows a player to win."

Isekai:Slow Life Isekai:Slow Life
"The game hooks you in with a constant stream of new characters, weak enemies, good gear etc. for the first 2-3 hours of the game."

Wuthering Waves Wuthering Waves
"Game combat is much easier than it actually shows up to be - parrying does not require you to actually time your presses, high level enemies are not actually that much harder."

Offline Games - No Wifi Games Offline Games - No Wifi Games
"The bots in 2-player games are very bad at the games, especially on easy mode"

Blue Archive Blue Archive
"Tactical Challenges are subdivided in blocks. Not the case for Total/Grand Assaults (Raids)"

Drilla: Idle Gold Miner Game Drilla: Idle Gold Miner Game
"This game's leaderboards use "shards", which divide people up into small groups."