Gameplay Vs. Story
With ever improving graphics, bigger budgets and longer development cycles games have been changing. Instead of the focus being purely on gameplay, games are becoming increasingly concerned with the story and the cinematic experience. Games such as Azura’s Wrath are arguably more about story and experience than they are about the gameplay.
Personally I feel that that’s a step too far, games such as The Legend of Zelda and Uncharted strike what’s, for me, the perfect balance, they feature simple but compelling stories and also have great gameplay. Many though, feel that gaming as a medium can become more than what it is today and whilst I disagree that gameplay should be put on the back burner I do agree that progression and evolution can be a very positive thing.
On the other hand however I can see that stories can also be all but irrelevant. The Mario games are some of the greatest of all time but the story really doesn’t matter, it’s the gameplay and level design that makes them great. Story for me is great and I love story driven games with film like cutscenes but I also love Mario, so clearly there is room for development either way.
What do you think? Should games become more about the experience and feature more of a focus on stories or are games about gameplay and should games like Azura’s Wrath even bother trying? After all, £40 is a lot to pay for what is more a film than it is a game.