Video Games as a Storytelling Medium

I’ve discussed books, I’ve discussed movies, and I’ve discussed graphic novels…what’s next? I would say video games. I have some stuff in the works but I want to outline my general thoughts on using video games to tell stories.

I think that in recent years, video games have, in  general, been shifting their focus away from gameplay and more towards storytelling. That’s not to say that every game on the market is like this. Of course not. But I think it’s worthwhile to think about how some games from the last few years have approached storytelling.

I’m also going to focus more on the indie market rather than AAA games. I do plan to discuss a few larger console titles, but admitedly that is not quite where my interests lie. I think that the freedom that comes with the digital age has proved to be an asset to storytellers wanting to make video games. They are not beholden to the desires of Microsoft, Nintendo, and Sony. They can charge whatever they want for their games, or nothing at all.

The storytelling that has flourished in the indie market has crossed over to AAA titles of course, which I argue is a benefit to the genre of video games as a whole. Will consumers continue to demand a compelling narrative to consider a game worthy of their time and money? Will these indie games remain niche, with graphics and gameplay taking the backseat to the story? I don’t know. Only time will tell.