Dev Shawn McGrath Lays Down Some Smack: storytelling in games is worthless
My kinda guy...
SM: Mass Effect attempted it, and people praise it. Itís horrible. Itís horrible because the choices that you make are so meaningless and people say, ďOh, but itís getting to a point where the whole galaxy is going to change based on your decisions,Ē and I say, no, thatís impossible, thatís an NP-hard problem, thatís a computer science problem where ďthat problem is not computable.Ē
Itís just a waste of time. Iíve read a lot of science fiction. The science fiction in Mass Effect is not something I would consider even passable for a high school paper. Itís horrible. But if you put in a game then itís praised for being so great. Itís especially so because in the context of video games, stories are fucking awful.
So attempting that is a worthless endeavor. Games are really fucking awesome. We can tell stories through entirely interactive ways, with no text.
Q: The fact that games are bigger than movies and books these days Ė as far as the breadth of content Ė what do you propose to change it, or provide as an alternative?
SM: Oh, I donít give a shit. Thatís a stupid number. Itís a meaningless metric. It means large corporations have made a whole bunch of money. That reflects nothing on the actual art form. Zero.