Can't be too hard to use levels from the Arena for specially configured fights with special win conditions. We've had many different kinds that can be done in a variety of ways. I'll see about denoting such things (simple and otherwise) in the SP ideas thread in the future.
They never pay them any mind. The closest they came was a 'speedrun' (if you have humor enough to call it that). This and a 'no death run' for one small section. I believe I've noted before how they could make silver and gold trophies regarding such things rather than filling up the ranks with progression trophies and jokes (die 5 times, hold a chest 30 seconds, etc.).
Trophies would be another aspect of the SP ideas thread. I can't expect them to make an exception to their (bad) policy about trophies (that being that you can do them on ANY setting *at least costumes/possessions disable them now*...so these can be done on Easy rather than Very Hard as is proper for a 'challenge'. For now, I'll just note the conditions to pass and allow for their usual indulgence of casual behavior:
-No Upgrades *beat the game without using EXP to upgrade anything beyond the MIN/base*
-No Extensions *beat the game without extending any bars; HP, MP, RP, etc.*
NOTE: These two encourage at least one more playthrough of the game as some trophies require MAX'd extensions and upgrades.
-No Magic *MP spending to damage a foe disqualifies from this trophy; allowances for any forced cases if any*
-No Items *No use of these for damaging foes*
NOTE: Something like 'No Relics' could be used too (for no damage conditions). This would include Trident, Wings *they can attack with BoA*, Fleece *counters*, Rage *it is a relic*, etc. Thing is, I don't know if 'Rage' will count as a relic in this entry or if we'll get items that would justify these conditions for a trophy in GoW:A. If not enough of them, just make 'No Rage'. Hell, if there are too many little things for seperate trophies, compile them together 'No items, no relics and no magic' as one thing to limit to weapons, grabs, etc. The new WW (World Weapon) system would fit into these sorts of cases that get limited in the veteran runs (Ex: PAIN+).
-Blades Mastery/ONLY *whole run without using another weapon to damage foes*
NOTE: Technically a trophy could be made such that once you get a new weapon, it would be forced from then on. This would encourage (read: force) even more playthroughs to get the Plat while learning how to use the weapons properly.
-No Blocks *block or parry cases not allowed, but block cancels are fine so long as you don't actually block anything*
-No Grabs *Tether, OS, OH, etc. disallowed beyond boss QTEs where you are forced*
-No Replenishment *no opening of chests with orbs of the HP, MP or RP variety*
-Speedrun (this time for the full game *playtested well*)
NOTE: GoW1 had one for 5 hours. An early speedrun with minor exploiting and skipping was already nearly 2 hours without costumes and I think it was on VH. If you can do this on Easy and with costumes (Dairy Bastard allowed too), why would they imagine 5 hours is a challenge? 3 hours is the highest I could advise them to allow for as it does NOT require the player to know any major skips/exploits to do. Just play fast. Especially if you're using a damned super costume on Easy. Good God did they pander hard and entirely undermine the idea of the trophy.
-No Death (full game this time)
NOTE: Easily exploited with save/load or restarting before death. 'No Hurt' would make it even more hardcore, if they wanted to really have a go with casuals who can't avoid damage.
-Very Hard (because a trophy for second best and not the top sends a bad message) *vanilla is fine*
Elsewhere I made suggestions on how to set-up a Very Easy mode and a few means to make a Very Hard alternative (or even VVH).
To note it, the usual layout is as such:
Easy - 200% all, less aggressive/slower recovering foes, 25% magic cost reduction, 25% 'rage' drain decrease
Normal - 100% all.
Hard - 40% Armor, 75% non-EXP orbs, more aggressive/quicker recovering foes.
Very Hard - 75% Power, 20% Armor, 25% non-EXP orbs, 75% EXP, most aggressive/fastest recovering foes
That's how it is (hopefully with a collision system inverse of Armor % as is BEST along with no foe grabs scaling with our Armor % or spells scaling with our Power %).
What do I notice about particularly bad player (those with handicap, the underage, the ultra casual, etc.)? I'd address them in in VE as such:
-Power and Armor as on Easy is enough (200%)
-EXP done away with entirely on this setting. Everything starts at MAX when acquired. EXP chests for other orbs.
-All orbs worth 500% (high recovery of rage, magic and health). MAX'd bars from the start.
-Foe aggression/recovery unchanged
-Instant Death cases nerfed to high damage *Ex: cliffs teleport us back to where we jumped from*
-Platforming mostly reduced to press "X" to win cases as with leaping acrss gaps in some games
-All QTEs do themselves correctly (like the possession)
-Regeneration of HP (rate of 1 unit of 200 every second *about 3 minutes*) after 5 seconds of taking no damage
-Trophies are disabled by this mode *even if they weren't, you would only get 'progression' trophies...mostly*
I'd prefer this mode be called what it is. "Casual".
As for an alternative to VH, a VH+ or a VVH:
-(VH alt) Dead Space 2 had an alternative that was mostly the Hard mode setting (foe aggression at VH though), but with saves severely limited. GoW could do this. H stats, VH foes and no checkpoints (only save points).
-(VH+) The same as VH alt, but done on VH entirely.
-(VVH) Unlike the other two with their specialty consideration *which could be saved for another trophy instead*, this reward would be in the same vein as "Hera's Chalice" or "General Kratos". A bone tossed to the combat veterans who like to challenge themselves. The simplest way to do it would be to take the VH just that little bit further by making everything worse by a little or halving.
Ex: Power 50% *like GoW1*, Armor 10% *only seen with special costumes*, Orbs 12.5% (near worthless), EXP at 50%, Foe aggression/recovery is presumably already maxed.
NOTE: Regarding the alt, one could argue that all orbs (replenishment and EXP) should be worth 0%. I'd not fault them for this logic. Better to leave EXP just 'low' rather than disabled though. Same to replenishment. Challenge runs that take them away completely would just spice the mode up more.
NOTE2: One could use this chance to be the inverse of Easy with 25% more expensive spells and 25% faster 'rage' drain just to dick the use of such crutches. Though alternative foe layouts are greatly appreciated along with extra foe moves gained, I understand this to require too much work on their part versus just changing some numbers and letting us DEAL WITH IT.
NOTE3: If they went back to the old system of collisions *as they should*, the damage caused by them would almost entirely make-up for the loss of Power in a freakish fashion only those familiar with the abuse of them in GoW1 and GoWII could really appreciate/imagine. Think of it. 200 damage collisions for full and 100 for half cases. Knockback collisons dealing 100 damage. Absurd.
Really, I'd only want them to make a "VVH" for vet amusement (a very small request). I wouldn't even ask for a trophy for it (but I still insist on VH getting one if nothing else I've noted). VE seems like something they would want in the game anyway (even more accessible to the point that the game is near beating itself).