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The Extra Credits thread!! EC is amazing!


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Actually, precisely ((100)/world-population) % effective. Which, while incredibly close to zero, is not a valid approximation for zero.

I used to use the entitlement argument with myself quite frequently. It really is just selfish, though. Thank goodness for Steam, which gives great opportunity for buying things at a fairly low price, as long as you're patient. The only thing that's tough is watching all the console releases go by, and drooling over them. There's only so many things you can pirate as a PC gamer.

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Well, part of the problem of amnesia is that it's a first-person storytelling device, as well. In most stories, the story is told from 3rd person omniscient, so the reader / player inherently has access to more data than the character has; this applies to video games, as well, especially ones that include cutscenes that play out independently from the player character (the Denerim scenes from DA:O, for instance). This factor draws the player out of the story, because the amnesia becomes less meaningful to a person who knows more than the character does.

It also has a problem with diminishing returns; games are usually designed with lots of re-playability, meant to be run through multiple times. How does that work with an amnesia trope written into the story? The more times you play the game, the less effective the amnesia becomes as a storytelling element; granted, all forms of storytelling have this problematic relationship with amnesia, but gaming probably exemplifies it the most. An interesting design mechanic would be to see a game that can scale the amount of content that the character is amnesic about in relation to the number of playthroughs or something.

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A very good point, Jack, though any story that relies on mystery and hiding of the facts could be expected to have this problem, too. I wonder how it could be made more compelling.

Resolving amnesia quickly, can help, too; for example, Terra, in Final Fantasy VI, resolves the worst of her identity crisis early on, and then proceeds to develop based on what is discovered after she remembers. Then again, amnesia strikes at several points to several characters in that game, all of which end up being fairly effective storytelling. Rachel and Strago, if I recall correctly?

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I don't know if it CAN be made more compelling in the context of video games; if anything, I think the most that can be done is refinement of application. Like Sephfire said, amnesia is used A LOT, whereas in film or novels it is used rarely and only inspecific instances, and almost NEVER in a 3rd person context. It may simply come down to the medium needing to invent another storytelling mechanic that allows the postponement of Act 1, because for games that aren't 1st person (in story, not camera perspective), it just doesn't make a lot of sense.

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man why did I just go on a binge of watching about 9 of these in a row at 2 in the morning.

Because you couldn't get enough of Dan's sexy chipmunk man voice? I know I can't. I like to imagine he's only looking at me mmmmmhhmmmmm. He knows what he's doing with that risque green shirt and tie... such a tease.

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I don't know if it CAN be made more compelling in the context of video games; if anything, I think the most that can be done is refinement of application. Like Sephfire said, amnesia is used A LOT, whereas in film or novels it is used rarely and only inspecific instances, and almost NEVER in a 3rd person context. It may simply come down to the medium needing to invent another storytelling mechanic that allows the postponement of Act 1, because for games that aren't 1st person (in story, not camera perspective), it just doesn't make a lot of sense.

What about instead of the character not knowing, he/she does know... but doesn't want the player to know.

Most games already have some minor 4th wall breakage, or at least hinting at it. The character will talk out loud for no reason (but for the players benefit), or they will make comments about certain items or areas when they come across them.

Instead, have the character know full well what their past is, but it almost like a struggle between the player and the character: the character doesn't want to confront or admit whatever the past is, while the player must resolve said past to complete the game.

As for how to do so, I can think of writing in some sort of system where the character earns some sort of trust with the player, like the player must guide him through the game, and anything that happens to the character would raise or lower said trust. I guess that means something like a a "trust" meter that goes up and down. Or make it a hidden component of the game.

I'm sure others could come up with a better way to implement it. But it could be a nice twist on the whole amnesia device.

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Might be relevant to your interests Seph.

http://ocremix.org/forums/showthread.php?t=33466

We're having a discussion about broad, baseline game features that should always be included in all video games. Sort of a standardization for things like volume controls, cutscene/movie playback controls, control customization, etc.

Not sure if there's a topic here for a future show, but it might be interesting to put a call out to the gaming community at large, see what people have to say.

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So when you first moved to Escapist, I tried to check your videos and got an error message, figured it was a temporary glitch, and forgot all about it.

Except that I just tried it again and I still can't watch any of the videos, even after following all of the instructions on their help page.

The fact that they even have a detailed "help, I can't see your videos!" page suggests to me that they're doing something wonky on their backend. And it means I can't see any of their crap.

Bah.

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