Creator’s discussion of the growing focus on, and potential of, storytelling in video game design

Mata Haggis

Abstract


The video game industry, by its wider reputation, is not commonly regarded for its deep and thoughtful experiences. In its common media presence it is represented as frequently dealing with content that is excessively violent and usually expressing themes and genres that are otherworldly: science-fiction, horror, or fantasy. However, the broad reputation of video games’ reputation is not wholly deserved, partly due to an arthouse-esque movement growing rapidly alongside the larger, traditional releases. In the last decade, and five years especially, there have been an increasing number of games which tell personal stories that are either inspired by life or that are autobiographical and that defy that broader reputation. These games are often highly concerned with creating vivid and believable characters, telling personal stories, or conveying emotional experiences using interaction to enhance the narrative. This article discusses some of the key titles in this area, the debates in video game culture surrounding them, and some of the choices made in the development of the author's own narrative game experience 'Fragments of Him'.


Keywords


Video games, games, autobiographical, storytelling, game design, narrative design, PlayStation, Xbox, PC

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.21153/ps2016vol2no1art532

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