Games provide a source of entertainment that other media don’t, interactivity. Now there is some extent of interactivity with everything, you have to pick up a book to read it, you have to play attention to a film, but in the sense of actually doing something that will affect the situation then games are the only source of true interactivity. Of course some oppose this like Espen Aarseth but he just likes to oppose anything to do with games, interactivity, ludology, linearity…etc.
There is an on going argument within the games industry. Because it’s a problem where games are becoming more real and with inventions like kinect we get more active with gaming. This is a good thing but will it get to an extent where we fully emmerse ourselves into a 3D universe and forget about our everyday life. The industry is constantly growing and it is inevitable we will get to a point that moral decisions will be made. I’m speaking in a really weird cryptic way for some reason but what I’m saying is if we do get full emersion with a game then there is going to have to be a time limit, a trigger that saves the game and shuts it off, forcing you back into the real world to provide your body with the nutrients it needs to survive. I feel like some kind of sci-fi novelist.
But I think I started on the wrong foot, lets talk about what was interactivity 30 years ago. It was just sitting in front of a computer in front of a screen and control pad. Has it changed that much? Not really to be honest, but looking back at pong, one of the first games. It had some conditions and a goal; games these days have multiple conditions and goals making them much more playable and re-playable. Sometimes games make a curve to try and reach more realism and that can either work out or not…although I don’t know where that relates into interactivity? Oh I remember the more interact suggests more realistic but that’s not the case. Heavy Rain by Quantic Dream tried to do something that simulated more realism through QuickTime events. The graphics were awesome but it got lots of bad feedback as people referred to it as more of a film than a game and by doing the QuickTime events it broke you out of your suspension of disbelief. So enhanced realism = no interactivity.
The Wii has become increasingly more popular since its release. It promotes movement while playing games; this is good for tennis, bowling…etc. Not so good for hardcore gamers and is mostly aimed at a young audience and the old biddies. The graphics are way more low spec than Xbox and Playstation but it doesn’t need that as its aimed at a different audience. So no realism = lots of interactivity.
Of course there is some midway point that has to be reached, semi-realistic with more interactivity? We are now tackling interactivity in a different way these days with the Iphone and Ipad. They promote a different kind of gaming experience. As well as this we have the whole minority report of sliding documents around with “SensitiveWall”, “SensitiveFloor” and “SensitiveTable” projects reaching us soon. I think I’m purposely talking crap now.
Below is a youtube link on the comparison between consoles it even throws in a bit of quicktime event so you can see how the PS3 is tap LT and RT where the Wii you have to physically move those bingo wings in order to survive.