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Editorials - Arise Within You

Joseph WithamJoseph Witham MemberFull Members
edited October 2003 in Latest Updates
Long-time message board poster Metacod has graced us with an editorial, now it's all you other long-timers to follow suit tounge.gif

Read the articles here.

Comments

  • PhatosePhatose Member Full Members
    edited October 2003
    I'm not sure I agree with this at all. ?While more freedom may mean the potential for less drama, it also means the potential for more drama - for surely, out of those multiple paths, more then one will be dramatic. ?And most certainly, two dramatic pathways is greater then a singular dramatic pathway.

    Additionally, there is the question of tastes. One man's drama is another's melodrama. Offering multiple paths allows for tailoring your incarnation of that drama to your personal likings, thus increasing the drama in all occasions save for when the author's vision of drama coincides perfectly with your own. If I'd rather my drama be of the flying bullets, desperates situations kind, then a game which offers no freedom, and it's drama via characterization will offer less drama to one which offered both that and the freedom to choose a different experience - in this case, a more bullet filled desperado kind of experience.



  • MetacodMetacod Member Full Members
    edited October 2003
    </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (Phatose @ Oct. 21 2003,02:10)</td></tr><tr><td class="QUOTE"While more freedom may mean the potential for less drama, it also means the potential for more drama - for surely, out of those multiple paths, more then one will be dramatic. ?And most certainly, two dramatic pathways is greater then a singular dramatic pathway.[/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>
    First of all, in a truly free-choice game, for every two dramatic paths there would be hundreds of undramatic ones. Of course, most games guide you toward interesting events a bit more than that, but there's still going to be the possibility of choosing something less interesting. Also, are two dramatic paths truly better than one? If the player was given a choice of what kind of plot they wanted to see, then maybe, but that choice can already be made through deciding which games, books, and movies you want to buy. In most games, the choice that decides what kind of plot you're going to see is less like "Which of these plots sounds best to you?" and more like "You see (x). What do you do?" If the player has no idea how their choices will modify the future drama of the story, then I'd say two dramatic paths aren't better than one.
  • DracosDracos Member Full Members
    edited October 2003
    It's a fairly good article, metacod. I'll comment more thoroughly on it when I have more willpower laugh.gif;. Just want to say good job though now.

    Dracos
  • MasamuneMasamune Member Full Members
    edited October 2003
    Very good article, Metacod.

    The second one, eh... I'm the type who don't believe games are about story. But still, gaming IS an art. Fun isn't something you just sort of insert in a game as an afterthought. It takes a combination of easy controls, involving gampeplay, appropriate sounds and music, and appealing graphics. To me, achieving that combination is like an art by itself.

    The only purpose a story serves is the 'motivator', as in that it serves only to make the player keep doing this certain part of gameplay continuously to reach the end of the story (and not to receive a high score with points).

    Because after all, I don't think I could see Final Fantasy selling if they stripped away the story and set it up merely that you keep fighting battles to get high scores.
  • LordBrianLordBrian Member Full Members
    edited October 2003
    </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote </td></tr><tr><td class="QUOTE"Because after all, I don't think I could see Final Fantasy selling if they stripped away the story and set it up merely that you keep fighting battles to get high scores.[/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>

    FFXI seems to have done fairly well in Japan. Guess we'll see how well your theory holds up in America soon.
  • SolonSolon Member Full Members
    edited October 2003
    </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (Masamune @ Oct. 22 2003,00:25)</td></tr><tr><td class="QUOTE"The only purpose a story serves is the 'motivator', as in that it serves only to make the player keep doing this certain part of gameplay continuously to reach the end of the story (and not to receive a high score with points).[/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>
    I disagree. A story can have much more purpose than just acting as a "motivator".... sure, I keep playing RPGs because I want to find out the entire story, but that's not all.

    The plot and gameplay can both interact... it's not like you fight meaningless battles just to continue with the storyline. In games like Final Fantasy and such, more or less everything in the game (save for sidequests and minigames) are parts of the story being told, save maybe for random encounters on the world map or something.



    Lasciate ogni speranza, voi ch'entrate.
  • PhatosePhatose Member Full Members
    edited October 2003
    </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (Metacod @ Oct. 21 2003,07:35)</td></tr><tr><td class="QUOTE"</span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (Phatose @ Oct. 21 2003,02:10)</td></tr><tr><td class="QUOTE"While more freedom may mean the potential for less drama, it also means the potential for more drama - for surely, out of those multiple paths, more then one will be dramatic. ?And most certainly, two dramatic pathways is greater then a singular dramatic pathway.[/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>
    First of all, in a truly free-choice game, for every two dramatic paths there would be hundreds of undramatic ones. ?Of course, most games guide you toward interesting events a bit more than that, but there's still going to be the possibility of choosing something less interesting. ?Also, are two dramatic paths truly better than one? ?If the player was given a choice of what kind of plot they wanted to see, then maybe, but that choice can already be made through deciding which games, books, and movies you want to buy. ?In most games, the choice that decides what kind of plot you're going to see is less like "Which of these plots sounds best to you?" and more like "You see (x). ?What do you do?" ?If the player has no idea how their choices will modify the future drama of the story, then I'd say two dramatic paths aren't better than one.[/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>
    I disagree. I'm really not seeing the basis for the two to a hundred basis. Everyday life has it's boring parts - but so do scripted games. Everyday life also has drama - in some cases, plenty of drama - so it doesn't seem to me that more freedom neccessairly makes less drama. It certainly allows the possibility of less drama, but it similarly allows the possibility of more drama. I don't see why this should be so casually discounted, while the possibility of less drama is considered.

    While players can certainly choose the nature of their games when they buy them, it's kind of an all or nothing situation. If a game has lots of drama you like, and a whole bunch you don't, then you're given the choice of either taking it all or not taking anyway. Freedom lets you tailor the experience closer to your personal tastes. I can buy a suit off the rack, but unless my figure matches perfectly to the standards that they offer, I'll get a better fit out of one tailored to me personally.

    I also don't understand why a player should truly have no understanding of how choices will modify the drama level. If a player sees X, and decides to do Y then they certainly have some kind of reason for doing Y. Likely included in that reason will be an estimation of the effect of Y. Not being able to foresee every possibly consequence doesn't equate to flying completely blind.



    Ultimately, I have to say that less freedom equals more consistent drama, not less drama total. You sacrifice your chance at drama better tailored to your personal taste for protection against the possibility you'll make boring choices. I don't think this is the same as less drama at all, just less consistency.
  • MetacodMetacod Member Full Members
    edited October 2003
    I thought I made it clear in the editorial how actions can have unexpected consequences. I chose The Shawshank Redemption as the main example because it's a story that's (in a way) based around its unlikely scenario, which wouldn't have occurred if any one of several seemingly unimportant choices had been made differently. It's true that you can estimate to some degree what the results of an action will be, but if we could know what every eventual consequence of any action would be, wouldn't our lives be perfect? You can't have a story truly "tailored to you personally" unless you're using something like twentytwo's piecemeal RPG generator, where the player can adjust values the program uses to generate a story to tailor the story to their liking. In my mind, the kind of freedom I'm referring to is a completely different concept, one with an appeal based more on the sense of immersion than on the ability to tailor a story to one's liking. No matter how you look at it, we don't really know how our choices will affect things in the long run. We're not omniscient, and so will not know the consequences of our actions the way a writer would.
    </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote </td></tr><tr><td class="QUOTE"?Everyday life has it's boring parts - but so do scripted games. ?Everyday life also has drama - in some cases, plenty of drama - so it doesn't seem to me that more freedom neccessairly makes less drama. ?It certainly allows the possibility of less drama, but it similarly allows the possibility of more drama. ?I don't see why this should be so casually discounted, while the possibility of less drama is considered.[/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>
    A good story is a rare thing. Stories written by writers aren't usually right in the middle in terms of drama, as you seem to suggest. Because a writer is omniscient and can design every event with a complete knowledge of its relation to everything else, they will generally create stories that are dramatic, much more so than those that would be produced if you simply generated events at random. True freedom is closer to latter than scripted writing, so I'd assume that most of the time, stories chosen through true freedom are going to be less dramatic than those chosen through scripted writing.
  • PhatosePhatose Member Full Members
    edited October 2003
    While I haven't seen the shawshank redemption, and thus don't know exactly what you're reffering to, it still seems to me you're only considering half the equation. While any number of changes could've made the story less dramatic, is it not possible that there are an equal number of changes that would've made it better?

    I think we're just bumping up against a terminology problem. Neither of those creates more drama, per se - rather, just greater consistency of that drama.

    Theoretically, lets say we had a completely freefrom game set vaguely in the universe of FF7. With that freedom, you have the possibility of playing through the exact same story of FF7. You also have the option of playing through a basically limitless amount of possibile other stories, some dramatic, some boring. Contrast this to FF7, as it is - can it really be less dramatic then FF7? FF7 is still in there - in addition to a practically infinite number of dramatic stories, as well as a practically infinite number of boring stories. I don't quite get how something can be less then something it actually contains. I do see your point - if a player is given choices, then they can stumble upon a very boring set of choices. But similarly, the can stumble upon a very exciting set of choices. The advantage of the scripted game is that it is consistent drama, not more drama.
  • MetacodMetacod Member Full Members
    edited October 2003
    I guess that may be technically true, but the main point still stands: ?in general, the more a piece of entertainment gives its viewer control over the actions of its characters, the less dramatic the overall end result will be, taking every possible path into consideration. ?Sure, some paths may be just as good as what a writer might have written, but since plots writers create tend to be better than those created by a player who doesn't fully understand the consequences of their actions, most of the paths will end up less dramatic than the single path that would have been scripted. ?My problem with your arguments came when you implied that a free-choice story would have just as much chance of turning out more dramatic than a written plot as it would of turning out less dramatic. ?That would only be true if, on average, plots writers design were equally dramatic as those created by the choices of players, and I've already explained why that isn't the case.



  • CidolfasCidolfas Member Full Members
    edited October 2003
    I don't agree with this. You're forgetting that even in a game that has multiple directions, EACH direction was written by a writer. For example, if you've ever played Shadow of Destiny, there are many different ways for the game to end, and most of them are extremely dramatic. That's because the same omniscience is shown in each ending. It's not like the player is taking over the role of the writer. He's still subject to the writer's whims. It's just that the writer is now telling five or six stories rather than one.
  • MetacodMetacod Member Full Members
    edited October 2003
    Okay, so if a writer writes a number of different paths, each of which has equal dramatic "merit", then that's an exception. However, since two choices rarely lead to the same amount of drama, the writer is being forced to write paths less dramatic than the one they would have chosen had there been no freedom (since that path would have been the most dramatic, in the theoretical world we're discussing). For each true choice added, the writer must split the story into several paths, only one of which would have been the one they would have chosen. The player is not taking over the role of the writer, but the writer is bending his will and cheapening his story to give the player more freedom.
  • PhatosePhatose Member Full Members
    edited October 2003
    So, in short, what you're saying is that authors have more information, and thus, all things being equal, are more able to accurately pick out dramatic stories then players who have less information, assuming both are attempting to do so?

    That seems reasonable, I suppose.



    I really disagree with your last statement though. If there was only one 'best' way to achieve the most drama, there would only be one story ever written - the best one. That's just not the case though - it's quite possible to have multiple paths, each seperately dramatic, with out being able to call one more dramatic then the other.

    Heck....I'm starting to wonder if there is some drama yardstick no one told me about. How exactly do you quantify something as subjective as drama as to be able to compare two possible paths?



  • kelthoskelthos New Member Full Members
    edited October 2003
    Freedom is great in a game, it adds replay value, sure some paths may be worse than others, but who cares, play it multiple times and get all the possibilities. I mean its a lot less fun to play a game 3 or 4 times when you know EXACTLY what is going to happen. And if there is total freedom then that dramatic path will still be there and often that is the one that you get when you take all the obvious choices.... like in your matrix example if you "take the blue pill" then you are silly because whats the point of playing a game if you try to go against the story.

    Freedom is good because replay value is important and more freedom meand better replay value in general
  • MetacodMetacod Member Full Members
    edited October 2003
    Phatose -
    I agree completely that in the real world, there's no drama
    "yardstick", and you can't qualify plots as objectively "best", "second-best", etc. However, you can compare wildly different plots and say that in general, most people will find one more dramatic or better than the other. (Say you were comparing Xenogears' story to something uninteresting that happened to you a few days ago, or something.) We're just talking about things in a theoretical world where drama - that is, story quality - can be accurately "measured". In the real world, that's impossible, but it is possible to say in some cases that most people would find plot A better than plot B.
  • DracosDracos Member Full Members
    edited October 2003
    </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote </td></tr><tr><td class="QUOTE"
    I really disagree with your last statement though. ?If there was only one 'best' way to achieve the most drama, there would only be one story ever written - the best one. ?That's just not the case though - it's quite possible to have multiple paths, each seperately dramatic, with out being able to call one more dramatic then the other.

    Heck....I'm starting to wonder if there is some drama yardstick no one told me about. ?How exactly do you quantify something as subjective as drama as to be able to compare two possible paths?
    [/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>

    I'll field that one laugh.gif. ?Your first is on a presumption.
    A)Drama is always better. ?It usually is, but not always. ?Writing is far more complicated than a single element. ?Metacod is going into the importance and difficulty of maximizing this one element. ?It really isn't something one considers so much in terms of the overall 'story' but more in terms of individual 'scenes' that make it up. ?Take for example a scene from Desperado. ?The desperado is standing outside a bar where he knows there is information on a person he is hunting. ?Let's assume we give player freedom of control over this Desperado. ?From this, the player could charge in guns blazing, which would be pretty dramatic and exciting. He could sneak around back, grab a guy and interrogate him, which may or may not be more exciting and dramatic. ?He might go to the general store and buy a cup of milk. ?While drama is subjective, you can clearly see the third action wouldn't be considered a viable dramatic outcome. ?So, we can give a player freedom, and let's assume he makes a choice that is within the set of actions we'll call "Dramatic Choices". ?Any action that is made from this set achieves the acceptable range of excitment and drama that is the goal behind the scene (outside of story and whatnot). ?So, each of these potential paths achieve some acceptable level of Drama within the paradigm of player choice. ?This is cool and generally 'good enough'. ?Additionally, we can assume an intelligent player, so we'll assume he'll make a decision within that Dramatic Choices set. ?Now, let's examine the player not having choice. ?Let's assume an intelligent game designer. ?This intelligent game designer, much like the intelligent player, can quickly analyze the scene, scout it out, and put together the set of Dramatic Choices which contain all desirable action ranges. ?He though knows a bit more than the player. ?He has a sort of desired plot in mind, a genre and style to it that he's trying to hold, so he can narrow down in this set of Dramatic Choices and pinpoint in a method other than randomness what fits better. ?Going with the example, the intelligent designer will look at the set and realize, 'hey I'm making an action packed 'do or die' desperado film. ?My gamers are going to be looking for action here, not espionage.' ?So he can go ahead and wipe out the choices from the Dramatic Choices that don't blend with this. ?Then looking over the remaining ones, he can pick one (I'll go into why this is generally some small number if not one later) and start scripting it out to maximize the drama. ?He can consider the lighting to create the best effect when the character enters the room. ?The camera work to achieve the same. ?The sound effects necessary. ?Etc. ?He can take this scene to a far greater level through specific and well thought out considerations of cinema then can be attained if just sets characters up there that'll interact with the player and are designed to react to whatever the player does (and, thinking on it, for a significant bit less work too).
    Now, you brought up two paths earlier, well, generally if you have a large set of Dramatic Choices, you will have a few options after prunning the undesirables. ?So, first the designer chooses one using some decision making process that'll vary from designer to designer (usually involving the 'vision' with the project). ?Then, if he's working for a 'freedom' of choice setup, he'd look and consider other options and whether or not they are superior (In which case he might switch) in terms of potential effect, similar, different, or inferior. ?Does it benefit the game to give two paths here? ?If so, he might put a second path in. ?One might think that could then extend to some theoretical Dramatic Choices set in which there is a huge number of remaining Dramatic Choices and there is a lot of potential equitable Dramatic Choices to choose from and therefore the designer should put them all in and thus the player would have freedom. ?In some ways, this is desirable. ?After all, we generally consider player freedom/interaction a good thing that involves the player and can improve the feeling of drama of a scene. ?In others though, it's undesirable. ?The work load of doing many scripted sequences per scene is considerable. ?While smaller than creating a high intelligence ai to interact (or just dumb mini-scripts), it's still quite draining on resources, and generally, by analysis, doesn't add much to the game that's not already achieved in the first Dramatic Choice option. ?The more that are added, the more the potential for each considerable addition of work to be pretty much wasted. ?This is extremely undesirable in the successful production of a game. ?Additionally since a game includes possibly dozens to hundreds of such scenes, trying to 'do it all' could very well sink a game well before launch. ?Therefore, it's generally sensible to limit it to a small group of controllable Dramatic Choices. ?This notably tends to rule out the Dramatic effect of stuff like the Desperado suddenly shooting himself in the head after walking into the bar in an elaborate scene (Which would possibly be dramatic, but would definitely end the game right there).

    Ergo, there is a significant difference on any given scene in terms of what's generally possible from player freedom and design perspective. ?Even if you give a random 'super-dramatic' scene done by players, an intelligent designer should be able to look at it and say: Well, if we shift the lighting about just so, move the camera over a little this way... ?and produce a slightly improved scene.

    Yes, this can be expanded to entire game with just a bit of difference, but why this doesn't result in just one 'blah' product is by how you differentiate below.

    B)Drama is subjective. ?This is true. ?So how do we ever look at something and declare it to be 'dramatic'. ?We'd need another comparitor to make sense of it. ?Well, let's look at it from a design perspective. ?First off, when we're producing a game, we have some sort of general concept and genre. ?Are we making a first person shooter that's a western type of flik? ?If so, we're already narrowing down and creating a 'target audience' to whom we care whether it's dramatic to or not (Yes, all productions do this, unless they are worrying about it being dramatic to weeds and the like). ?This target audience has a perceived set of likes and dislikes and some sort of consensus about what's dramatic and what's not. ?This perceived consensus is what we can use as a 'guideline'. ?"We're making an action game. ?To a general action game fan, would this come off as dramatic? ?Would it excite? ?Pull to the edge of their seat?" ?"We're making a fantasy role playing game set in olden times with elves and such. ?How can we best grip this audience?" ?This target audience combined with the genre they are working with can provide a measuring stick with which to analyze the drama of a given scene. ?Another way of putting it, using the above example scene, "Is this the best darn Desperado Shooter scene we can pull off?" ?If 'yes', then good. ?If 'no', then what can we do to make it better? ?Usually the changes that are made include shifting to another Dramatic Choice.

    laugh.gif; ?*Lecture mode:offline*

    Dracos
    Edit: gah, took too long to write that ^^;
    Edit2: As someone mentioned I was confusing with the Desperado example, I was taking a scene from a film which was streamlined for Drama and considering how it could go different if we took it as a game.



  • PhatosePhatose Member Full Members
    edited October 2003
    OK, here's a very simple question. ?Games, by their very nature require turning control over to the player at some point. ?By this theory, any time control is taken from an omniscient creator to a player, drama is lost. ?Can't we then conclude, that games are neccessairly less dramatic then movies, books, ect, which don't turn over control to the player? ?If so, why would anyone concerned with telling a dramatic tale bother with video games at all? ?It seems like an innately weak format.



  • MetacodMetacod Member Full Members
    edited October 2003
    The way I would want to do a "dramatic story" game is this:

    The game, like current story-based games, alternates between gameplay and cutscenes. ?However, the game is not fixed into one genre. ?Most cinematic games have the player only play during parts of the story where the tasks required of the characters fit into the narrow gameplay template provided by the game's chosen genre. ?In my game, there would be different gameplay "modes" that appeared depending on what was happening in the storyline. ?The protagonist infiltrates an enemy base? ?MGS-style gameplay. ?He hijacks an enemy airplane? ?Boom, it's suddenly a flight simulator. ?And so on. ?The player wouldn't actually be able to influence the course of the story, but the gameplay modes would give them the feeling that they're actually immersed in the story that's happening.



  • DracosDracos Member Full Members
    edited October 2003
    Metacod: An excellent way to do it. One of many, in fact. laugh.gif

    Phantose:

    But that's a mistake taken from understanding it at only a simple level. Drama is generally a desirable aspect, but it is not the only aspect represented in a game or a movie or any story telling forum. The effect of a game can, theoretically, go far beyond that of a movie due to harnessing the involvement of the player. Sacrificing some drama in some scenes in order to achieve a greater overall feeling of being a part of the action. Additionally, there is merit to having a game that is both 'fun' AND attempts to retain a high level of drama.

    So, while drama isn't the 'highest goal' all the time, understanding how to work with it and get the most out of when it should be dramatic is important in any media production. It, like most things in life, isn't good in extreme excess to the degredation of everything else, but creates a far more vibrant effect from a splended blend of material.

    Dracos
  • RicoRico Member Full Members
    edited October 2003
    Depending on how we want to define drama itself, turning control over to the player in certain circumstances will heighten the drama above what can be brought across in a non-interactive medium. The possibility of unintended failure exists in video games where it does not in movies, novels, and other such things. Sneaking into a building can be a lot more dramatic if you're actually worrying about getting caught than when you're reading static material.
  • DracosDracos Member Full Members
    edited October 2003
    That's true as well. Lack of great freedom doesn't automatically mean you can't do something. It would more mean, "okay, you are sneaking into the building. You can get caught, you can lose, you can cap everyone along the way, but you can't tell Solid Snake that he's going to go get piss drunk instead of trying to get to the Metal Gear."

    Ideally though, a hero never 'fails' but always seems like he is going to, creating perpetual tension from that. Of course, that's for another debate laugh.gif;

    Dracos
  • MeoTwister5MeoTwister5 Member Full Members
    edited October 2003
    Umm.... I'm looking for some suggestions on how I should do my next editorial. I'm planning to do Part3 of Villainy and Philosophy either on Plato's Cave and Theory of Norms, or perhaps Kantian Philosophy on the Noumena.

    Right now I don't have a very firm grasp on Plato's Cave and The Theory of Forms (actually, it still boggles me...) sad.gif

    edit - oops, rather nasty typo.



  • DracosDracos Member Full Members
    edited October 2003
    It's been a bit since I've read Plato's Allegory of the Cave and I cannot immediately see any relevence in it to villianry in video games (Well, not totally true, but nothing worth going into). I'd suggest waiting and reading it again, improving thy grasp of it before attempting to derive an application of the philosophical principles in it to video games. To do otherwise is to produce an inherently sloppy article. And if you are going to put the effort into writing it, why bother with a sloppy article? laugh.gif

    Good luck.

    Dracos
  • MeoTwister5MeoTwister5 Member Full Members
    edited October 2003
    It was actually in my sleep that I grasped the Allegory of the Cave. I suddenly woke up and it seemed to make sense to me what the Allegory is, and with it a flash of insight of what villainy might do with it. I've written my notes down somewhere, and right now I'm deducing what the cave entrance is. I'll probably be writing it later. laugh.gif
  • MeoTwister5MeoTwister5 Member Full Members
    edited October 2003
    Aww dang. Editorials will update in less than 24 hours, and I'm still not done yet. Linking VG villains and Plato's Philosophy sure is hard....

    My brain hurts.... sad.gif
  • RosewoodRosewood Member Full Members
    edited October 2003
    The replies in this thread reminded me of Deus Ex. This is a game where the story is linearly scripted except for three different endings, but you are given scenarios where there are several different ways you can approach the problem, and still have the same outcome story- and drama-wise.

    Linear RPGs have this quality to some degree too, where you can make choices as to how to develop and equip your characters. Less so in some RPGs (like Phantasy Star), more so in others (like FFX).

    Speaking of FFX--I'm playing it now in anticipation of FFX2 so it immediately comes to mind smile.gif --there's a good example of a linear, dramatic, story. But the pace is not always hectic or dramatic. It doesn't directly parallel the pace of real life, but follows a certain sine-wave like flow of more exciting moments and quieter ones, fighting and puzzle-solving and character chat. But the quieter moments, I think, make for more powerful drama later on, as things that seem innocuous early on suddenly gain a painful twist. (spoiler-free!)

    I agree with what another poster said, adding some of my own words, that a linear story has a greater chance of achieving a response from the player because the writers can take all of those lit-crit elements--the characters, themes and so on--and integrate them together for a particular intended effect. The less linear a game gets, the less chance there is (IMO) for all those elements to come together in a way that creates a powerful "gestalt."

    There's an old quote "Truth is stranger than fiction, because fiction has to make sense." A person's life is a work of art too, but constructed in a more haphazard, often senseless, and long-winded way wink.gif
  • RicoRico Member Full Members
    edited October 2003
    <Friday> I loved Deus Ex for it's MULTI PATH GAMEPLAY AND BY MULTI PATH I MEAN VENTS.
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