Submitted by matgrowcott 35d ago | opinion piece

Will Video Game Stories Ever Get Better?

From GamesReviews:

"One of the biggest topics in gaming over the past few years is the evolution of how video games are becoming more like movies. Some see this as a positive because it shows the evolution and progression of gaming, while others see it as a negative, saying that it represents a culture that is trying to change itself into something it isn’t. I think this is wrong. Games aren’t becoming more like movies, they’re just adapting elements from a successful medium to improve themselves, and there’s nothing wrong with that." (Mass Effect 3, PC, PS3, PS4, The Last Of Us, The Last Of Us Remastered, Wii U, Xbox 360, Xbox One)

Twiggy  +   35d ago
Only with the developers willing to tell a story, from indie games to the big ones, there are plenty of hardcore story tellers that will only get better with hardware enchancements.

I already prefer the way video-games tell stories than how movies do, I get much more personally invested when I take the role of the characters in the story, and The Last of Us showed us that people are interested in the story telling aspect of games, and I'd happily support a healthy future of story based games.
ATi_Elite  +   35d ago
Video Games stories are already better than Movies and Books imho.

15 minutes into a movie and you already know how its gonna end and Books use way too many adjectives and waste time describing the scene down to the dust in the carpet to fill pages and make the book longer.

Video games on the other hand give you a great story by letting experience the full range of emotion from the main characters perspective.

Being the main character you never feel out of focus and are always right in the thick of things that movies and books can't do.

and this will only get pushed further along with VR.
Wni0  +   35d ago
"Books use way too many adjectives and waste time describing the scene down to the dust in the carpet to fill pages and make the book longer."

Not all books suffer from that, in fact I'd say those are in the minority. "15 mins in and you know the end," is also an unfortunate argument, you are most likely watching the wrong films. Yes, Rom Coms usually follow the same structure, as do straight up action or save the world movies, but you can say the exact same thing about videogames... Ever hear of the Heros Journey?

Your tone can be mirrored back,

"Videogames waste to much time going through repetitve gameplay sequences which have no bearing towards the plot, no character developement, the only story gets jammed down your throat via rushed cutscene or walkable cutscene."

Two of the best videogame stories last generation were probably TLoU and Red Dead, and those are not even "great" movie comparisons, let alone a Stalker, for TLoU or a There Will Be Blood for Red Dead. They are just pretty good.

Videogames have a long way to go. I will say The Walking Dead videogame has sections better than the show, but I dont think its as good as the comics.
ginsunuva  +   35d ago
TLOU is the prime of video game stories. You can't pick the best one and say all video game stories are like it.
Twiggy  +   35d ago
Metal Gear Solid, Bioshock, Uncharted, Metro, Tomb Raider (reboot), Batman Arkham series, Zelda, Assassins Creed, Portal, Half Life, so on and so forth all do pretty well with story right?

I wasn't saying all games are like TLOU, just picking a recent example dude, story based games are here to stay.
nippletwister  +   35d ago
Games aren't evolving by adapting elements from the movie medium if adopting those elements also ends up in gameplay being dumbed down and reduced, assuming the product is marketed as a proper game and not a cinematic experience. They are called "games" for a reason. Gameplay comes first and foremost, the rest follows depending on the depth, passion and talent of the developer.
That's the problem, and this is why the term "becoming like movies" exists. When gameplay is treated as just a lazy addition or a secondary focus that might as well not exist in a game when it is a linear movie by majority, then you call that "a game becoming a movie".
There is a difference between a game adopting elements from a medium, and movies adopting gameplay elements.
Roccetarius  +   35d ago
Pretty much this. If gameplay is being benched because of a 'cinematic experience', then i may just as well watch it instead of playing it myself.
wheresmymonkey  +   35d ago
THat's highly subjective. There are some rather brilliant Videogame stories out there already. But i think Graham Lineham said it best. Things won't improve untill gams writers start basing their stories on literature instead of films.

Some of the best games of the last few years were based on books.
skydragoonity  +   35d ago
The last of us answers the question which is : Yes
#4 (Edited 35d ago ) | Agree(8) | Disagree(2) | Report | Reply
tablecloth  +   35d ago
TLOU doesn't have a great story, but rather a great journey.

I'll probably get a lot of disagrees but doesn't mean I don't like TLOU. The chemistry is what made it great. Story wise it's almost the same as any infected/zombie type of story. And imo, it nailed that part.

Like the movie Taken, it does nothing new but the execution on what it focused on was superb.
iamnsuperman  +   35d ago
But what you describe is a story. The getting from A to B was merely a plot device and a setting. What you have said makes no sense. The story is the whole package. The relationship between the two main characters and how they interact in that harsh world.

Take A Thousand Splendid Suns. The story isn't just about women in Afghanistan (that is a context). It is much more than that which is why it is a good story
#4.1.1 (Edited 35d ago ) | Agree(7) | Disagree(4) | Report
360ICE  +   35d ago
In addition to what iamnsuperman said, one has to appreciate the events that unfold, particularly near the end of the Last of Us. It seems obvious to me that it has a little more going for it event-wise than your average zombie-flick.
Clown_Syndr0me  +   35d ago
I agree, the story wasnt that good but the characters and enviroments were.
tablecloth  +   35d ago
You are right, perhaps I should have worded it better.

The story is simple, yet the execution is done superb. It's not groundbreaking and doesn't need it to be, but it isn't a "grand" story.

It isn't really complicated and there lies my problem probably. I see complicated stories have more of a grandness to them. Doesn't mean I dislike more simpler stories, but I don't see them as great ones. Rather if done right, they feel a lot more "real" as to thought-provoking.

TLOU felt like a great game as opposed to MGS 2 for example which ( personal opinion ) thought of it as a great game.

Sorry if I didn't explain it right or still haven't, please feel free to correct me.
chrissx  +   35d ago
Some of the video games I've played have way better stories than all the blow ups I see from hollywood. There's def still more great stories to come from games
700p  +   35d ago
DerrickCole  +   35d ago
Completely agree. There are some amazing video game stories that even Hollywood tried to make into movies. Bioshock, red dead redemption, any GTA game, hell there are many games that had terrible gameplay but I kept playing just for the story.
#5.2 (Edited 35d ago ) | Agree(1) | Disagree(0) | Report | Reply
LordMe  +   35d ago
Like all movies, and books it depends on what you watch, play or read.

For every Dragonlance and Ender's Game there is a 50 Shades of Gray.

For every The Last of Us and Final Fantasy Tactics there is a Hunted: The Demon's Forge.

For every Star Wars (First Trilogy) and Lord of the Rings there is a Sharknado.

Every thing has good and bad, judging games off of the bad alone is like judging movies off of Bollywood alone.
#6 (Edited 35d ago ) | Agree(6) | Disagree(2) | Report | Reply
WitWolfy  +   35d ago
I remember Lost Odyssey made me shed a manly tear, so yes there are games out there that tell awesome stories.
MeatAbstract  +   35d ago
Gaming can go beyond simply telling a story like you would see in a book, film, or a TV show. The Last of Us told a fantastic story but was pretty traditional with gameplay. The key factor was the writing and characterization was SUPERB.

Taking true advanatge of a computer game story is to let the world tell the story. Interactive storytelling. Not pulling the camera from the player to show a cutscene. I think games like SotC, the Souls series and Half Life 2 achieved this well enough. I believe it should be explored more rather than making games more 'cinematic'
DCfan  +   35d ago
Im playing BlazBlue CSX now, and holy god, the story is actually pretty good. I never imagined it would be this gripping. It actually fits an RPG and proves the rumors (?) that the game was originally an RPG.
#9 (Edited 35d ago ) | Agree(0) | Disagree(0) | Report | Reply
bez87  +   35d ago
The Problem is gamers don't understand the hardwork and extra miles game developers have to go regarding story and gameplay, unlike a movie which goes 1 way and always that way, Gamers believe that games should include Freedom which then sets the scene for how game developers have to sit and think of how they can make this happen in the realms of a good story, I mean most gamers want it so you can do what ever you want and it will effect what happens but this in turn means developers have to predict what way people will play and that means more scripts more story paths everything a game is about 20x bigger than a hollywood script and that's just for a linear story line, so add that to 2 or 3 story paths it's a lot of work, If a game developer wants to tell a good story they will do it but it will be in a linear way except for that 1 gem who manage to get the balance right.
Wni0  +   35d ago
Name one game that actually changes the story completely from a players decision.

Not, get a different ending cutscene.
Not, this character dies, but hey next mission or game it doesnt matter.

Videogame choices are gimmicks right now, some, (TWD,) are better than others.

Judging a story on whether or not you can predict the end is juvenile, not every movie needs to be the six sense or fight club. Its great to have well thought out twists througout the story, like game of thrones however.

Videogames have the potential right now to be imo better, there are just too many tools to not be, player interaction, multiplayer, choices, 800 hours into a 2 hour experience etc. But name one game that actually can match one of the best picture nominees from last year. But its not like videogames cant just hire a f*cking amazing writer, they just havent yet, because we keep buying the same protagonist who wears a hood nonstop and goes around saying, "I never asked for these powers." Thrilling.
contradictory  +   35d ago
stanley parable is one of the better known example... also text adventure games and light novels obviously. but yeah, AAA games could use some real story interactions it's true. the games i mentioned were built from ground up for the storyline interactivity alone and nothing else really...

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