Comments (5)
Kevlar009  +   669d ago
If you want a game to transcend mere entertainment value, yes

Imagine Bioshock without Andrew Ryan, or the story of Rapture. Sure the gameplay would've been fun, but it is the dynamic the characters and backstory which brings Bioshock on a deeper and more sophisticated level than just a Shooter with pretty visuals

Even though it had no vocal dialogue, I believe the atmosphere and value of Metroid Prime was enhanced through the use of Logs. Yes the graphics and sound were amazing, and the gameplay revolutionary, but you gained a greater sense of the travesty of the situation by hearing how the world came to be, and the sad fate of it's peaceful inhabitants.

My belief is narrative brings you closer to the world than gameplay or graphics could ever do. I'm not saying every game needs extensive narrative to be valid (Super Meat Boy constantly reminded you of how zany the world is meant to be), but games can live and die on the question of "do you believe the world you are in". Take away the back-stories, the lore, the characterization and you would most surely find a shell of what the game once was. Look at the greatest games of our time and imagine if the heart was no longer present
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Qrphe  +   668d ago
My favorite games ever had what I consider the narratives I've enjoyed the most in videogames, so to me, yes.
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contradictory  +   668d ago
yes they are.
Hicken  +   668d ago
I hate questions like this. Inevitably, you'll get someone that says, "I played X game, at it had no narrative whatsoever, and I still enjoyed it." And, elsewhere, someone just will not care, or will say that the narrative in certain games are done so poorly that they do not see the point.

YES, narratives are important. In SOME games, because not all games need them. And how that narrative is delivered should vary depending on the needs of the game.

It's not a black and white question that's definitively YES or NO. Rather than asking IF the narrative is important, it's better to discuss WHEN and HOW they can be important, and correctly implemented.

May as well ask "Are Seatbelts Important?" and disregard how pointless they would be on motorcycles and horses.
OmniSlashPT  +   668d ago
Yes. Some games are pure entertainment (like mobile games, arcade games and games like sports, racing and such), but deep down most games have a narrative. Even Super Mario has a narrative, as simple and straight forward as it is, it's still a narrative, you have a purpose and a goal.

Let's take a look at Journey for example. It has no dialogue, no text whatsoever. It's going from here to there. But why is it so good and memorable? Because you're able to interact, to create an unique experience. Journey communicates through its art and unique MP co-op, not through choices or thousands of lines of text. Take for example open world games, they're so memorable because of their immersive world, sometimes its not even about the characters or the gameplay, but because of how the world was created. Like Skyrim or Liberty City for example.

Games are a very diverse media, and its getting more diverse every year with new ideas and hardware.

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