The Game Industry had two shocking pieces of news this week. Hitman developer IO Interactive is no longer a part of Square Enix, and Mass Effect as a franchise is now on hold following the reaction of Andromeda. Both series have been critical successes; with Mass Effect being one of the biggest games from Bioware. And yet, this is a harsh reminder of the risks of making a game and the business of the game industry. Read more…
A lengthy upcoming Perceptive Podcast got on the subject of storytelling in video games. Over the years, we’ve seen games try to pull the player into the world and the story. For the most part, they’ve all failed in one way or another. On our cast, we talked about how people get pulled into stories, and that led to talking about another way to write video game stories.
I’m probably going to get yelled for this, but I find that storytelling in video games has always been and continues to be horrible. Even as technology has improved and we have seen the growth of the medium, I’ve yet to find a game where the story has hooked me from beginning to end.
When I think about it further, some games have gotten close, but none have managed to get it all right, and this has to do with several elements that the video game medium is weak around.
A common practice in skill or story based games is to have point of no returns and while their definition should be obvious, their roles when developing a game aren’t. Understanding how to section your game behind point of no returns is an important skill as too many or not enough can ruin the pacing.