Aug 20, 2013

Imagination and Video Games

Babbling at the Counter #04 – Video Games

Imagination and Video Games

Note: This post will have some spoiler about Spelunky. They are pretty obvious but if you didn’t play the game I should advise you to play it a few times and then read this post. (

This last two week I’ve talked about Madness ( and Spelunky (link above). Those games have something interesting in common: they both have a very basic and incomplete plot. What we can do is turn that “quasi-plot” and write our own stories while we play. How? Let’s see.

In Spelunky we have a moral system, even if you find it hard to believe. You can play either a movie hero (by not killing the useful NPCs) or a movie villain (by killing each and every one of them). Or maybe you decide that the merchants are in fact evil, perhaps some Nazi Scientists (as movies usually do) disrupting the local ecosystem to create those gadgets they sell, so you are just stopping them. You are not the bad guy here! On the other hand, and while I’ll keep the spoilers low, try to sacrifice lots of characters to the altars and see what you get. That’s how villains are created, I tell you.

Now, Madness is one of the most immersive games I’ve ever played. With only imagination to draw it, you can make that dungeon as horrible as you can imagine. It’s just so easy to see your character struggling to walk through the clouds of butterflies, isn’t it? And, whose ghost do you see when the madness starts to take a hold of you?

Some will say: “I have real plots and graphics to create that for me, thank you”. Let them, who cares? They are the ones missing the fun. We have awesome and unique stories, they have mass produced plot. I guess we win.

- The Storeman

No comments:

Post a Comment