…think about Indie game narratives

Player: Lets play this game.
Indie Game: I have a sparse ambiguous narrative.
Player: Sure, whatever, I hear your game mechanics are fun.
Indie Game: Maybe, here I have dumped you into a situation with absolutely no guidance, you can walk to the right though, or maybe click on that button.
Player: Ok.
Indie Game: Bravo, here are some fun and engaging mechanics.
Player: Lovely, I notice you are a linear experience though.
Indie Game: No worries, here is more fun and engaging mechanics, oh and an ambiguous plot spewing NPC.
Ambiguous Plot Spewing NPC: Something portentous.
Player: Nice mechanics, I’m having fun.
Ambiguous Plot Spewing NPC: You might be the bad guy.
Player: What?
Ambiguous Plot Spewing NPC: Bye!
Indie Game: Here’s some more fun, engaging mechanics, but I’ve also made the graphics a bit grimier, because you might be the bad guy.
Player: So I might be the one who will bring doom to the world then?
Indie Game: Maybe, I’m sparse and ambiguous.
Ambiguous Plot Spewing NPC: Why are you doing this? You might be the bad guy, doooooooooom.
Player: It’s a linear game experience, I literally can either carry on your pre-defined plot or stop playing your game entirely. That’s not a clever choice you are forcing me to make.
Indie Game: I only said maybe, any way, here’s a loyal friendly NPC to join you.
Loyal Friendly NPC: You’re awesome, I know we’ve only just met but I will do literally anything for you, lets continue through this completely linear experience together.
Indie Game: With more fun, engaging mechanics.
Player: Yay!
Loyal Friendly NPC: Oh no awesome friend, by your actions I have now died. I am dead.
Indie Game: And it’s all your fault! You scumbag, you engaged with the fun engaging mechanics and now Loyal Friendly NPC is dead, dead.
Player: Now I feel sad. Oh no, wait, now I’m annoyed at you trying to make a moral judgement about me when you’ve presented me a linear experience and my only options are to play the game you made (thus making you responsible for killing the Loyal Friendly NPC not I) or not playing your game at all.
Indie Game: Non need to get sarcastic, here are some more fun, engaging mechanics.
Player: I will play your game but I care not one whit for your sparse ambiguous narrative
Ambiguous Plot Spewing NPC: Doooooooooooooooooooom.
Player: Sod off.
Indie Game: Here’s the end of the game, surprise binary choice that ahs not been indicated at all before now, look, look, you can choose not to be the bad guy.
Player: I. DO. NOT. CARE.


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