So I’ve mentioned previously that I’m currently working my way through a nice hefty stack of Xbox 360 games I’ve been wanting to play for… well… years.
One of them was Fallout 3, which I’ve successfully milked dry thanks to the “Game of the Year Edition”.
One of those addons is The Pitt.
This week, Heavy Rain was released for PS3.
Why do I bring these up? Because they both deal with gray decisions.
Take my word for it. If you’re into game lore, and you enjoyed Fallout 3, but never tried out The Pitt, go play it. It’ll only take you a few hours to beat it.
The teaser tags for The Pitt talked about your character needing to make decisions that wouldn’t be so cut and dry. I gave the typical, “Yeah, yeah, you wish. You say that every time. Shaddup.”
Here’s a typical game’s “gray” decision:
Do you want to:
A) Save the Kingdom.
B) Save yourself.
Yeah…. edgy. /golfclap
This all boils down to a much larger underlying problem. Namely, “Video game writing typically sucks.” Why? That’s a matter for another post, but it has a lot to do with hiring math geeks to do an artist’s job.
Some studios get it right. Blizzard of course… and Betheseda (sometimes).
So, back to The Pitt. I sat down, started playing, and here’s what shocked me:
I was playing an all out good guy, and I actually got to a fork where I was stumped what the right decision was. Both were quasi evil. Both were quasi good. Some bastard over at Bethesda actually figured out what a gray decision was and had dumped it in my lap to deal with.
Now this isn’t jaw dropping. You’re not going to scream for your friends to come in and watch. But it shows something. Games aren’t as black and white anymore. They’ve claimed to not be for ages, but they’re finally over the past couple of years finally beginning to live up to those claims.
So like I said, “Heavy Rain” came out this week. I haven’t had a chance to check it out yet, but all I’m hearing from everyone is how gray the story telling is.
Wonderful. It’s about time.