Games are not narratives
in Games are not
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Over the past half century, the Holy Grail of game design has been to provide a game experience analogous to the aesthetic experience provided by stories and storytelling. Games and stories have had a long and troubled history in this regard, with neither emerging unscathed by the requirements and expectations of the other. This chapter offers an alternative solution to the dilemma of how to make games and stories compatible: quit trying. If an ideal marriage were possible, if effort and desire alone could accomplish this, it might have been accomplished long ago. Yet neither technological advances nor programming prowess has proven capable of satisfactorily tying this knot. The most likely conclusion to draw from this persistent failure is that game playing and storytelling originate in two distinct human aesthetic sensibilities. Though neither is made lesser through its incompatibility with the other, neither is made greater or more enjoyable as a reluctant partner in their interminably dissonant pairing.

Games are not

The difficult and definitive guide to what video games are


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