Everybody's Gone To The Rapture Refuels An Ongoing War
"It's not a game."
We've heard the accusation countless times before. We started hearing it the instant non-interactive cut-scenes began to filter into the industry. We hear it whenever a game focuses on linear storytelling as opposed to player-driven freedom.
And it has to be the most mind-numbingly stupid argument in the history of gaming.
Let me make this abundantly clear: There is no video game where you "watch more than you play." That has never happened. It was ridiculous to hear such accusations leveled at any Metal Gear Solid game back in the day, and even more ludicrous when leveled at RPGs like Final Fantasy and Xenosaga. The ratio of interactive to non-interactive content in such games was probably about 20:1 at a bare minimum.
And yet, the accusations persist. When Heavy Rain came out, it was more of the same; a bunch of morons trying to say it wasn't a video game. Well of course it's a game. It's not a movie. The instant you perform some sort of input command, that piece of entertainment immediately becomes interactive. How much you do it, how much you have to think before you do it, how many buttons you press throughout the game; all of that is completely irrelevant. It's a game.
But it just never ends. I guarantee you'll hear the accusations again concerning Everybody's Gone to the Rapture. The critics are already split; the scores run the gamut from very low (a 4 is the lowest I've seen) to perfect. Even major sources are all over the place; GameSpot and GamesBeat gave it a 9 while IGN and PSU gave it a 6.5. And when you read the reviews, you know what's going to happen: You're going to get a bunch of people crawling out of the woodworks saying it "isn't a game."
And these are the very people who are halting the progress of storytelling in games. Yes, you require a linear progression to tell the best stories. You just do. It's the nature of the medium. Now, if you have no interest in that, no problem. Play whatever you enjoy. But don't stand up - partially because you may not have the requisite attention span or intelligence - and proclaim "Everybody's Gone to the Rapture" is just a movie." Just don't. It's embarrassing.
8/11/2015 9:47:58 PM Ben Dutka