You've put in hours into a game, the final boss is just on the horizon.
While the end might be nigh, it probably isn't unpredictable. Game
endings tend to be repetitive success stories, lacking the ambiguous or
downer endings readily available in other mediums. Menveer Heir, of Raven Software and Design Rampage, inspires us again
on this weeks podcast with his post lamenting the lack of depressing
games. Join Scott and I while we discuss player agency, dead avatars,
Roman aggression, and authorial control. As always, leave your thoughts
in the comments section below and we'll shower you with praise.
BE WARNED! This podcast
contains potentially significant spoilers for about twelve games and
two movies. These are listed in the show notes, along with Manveer's
original article. If you are sensitive to spoilers and hear a game
title, go ahead and skip ahead a few seconds.
Some discussion starters:- Confession time. What downer game endings have tugged at your heart strings?
- Does character failure equate to player failure? What about failure and downer endings in non-character driven games like Civilization?
- So you've got a sad story to tell. How do you pull it off with out upsetting the all-powerful player?Show notes:
- "Life is a Series of Down Endings," by Manveer Heir via Design Rampage- Run time: 29 min 3 sec- Music provided by Brad Sucks
- Show includes spoilers for: Prince of Persia, Shadow of the Colossus, Chronotrigger, Passage, Halo 3, Call of Juarez, Call of Duty 4, Eternal Darkness, Far Cry 2, Final Fantasy X, Bioshock, Braid, Braveheart, and Marley and Me.