I’ve already spoken about playing games for friendly competition. I’ve also admitted that I’ve learned a thing or two through playing games. Today, I’ll dive into escapism and how games can take players to different places without leaving the comforts of their own home.
I’ve never “escaped” into games for long stretches. I’ve never lived in an MMORPG or spend six hours straight submerged in a game because I love game world so much. I’ve never felt that kind of devotion for any game world.
That’s not to say I don’t appreciate a fantastic and well crafted game world. I love spending time on the Citadel in Mass Effect. I just started The Witcher 2 and I am enjoying my time exploring Temeria. It doesn’t have to be a giant open world either. I was just as receptive to the linear paths through Journey and Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons.
Recreation of real life locales have their own set of draws for me. I like to see what liberties designers take on well known cities. I’ve never been to New York City but thanks to Grand Theft Auto IV and other media, I have a pretty good understanding of that city’s layout.
I’ve seen video game depictions of Tokyo’s red light district through the Yakuza titles. And the neon lights of Hong Kong have convinced me that I should go check out the real thing. But there are cities that are simply impossible to visit. I cannot visit 1950s Los Angeles in real life but I can spend a couple of hours driving through the burgeoning downtown core.
Videogames are the closest thing to Star Trek’s holodeck and as technology improves, so will the capabilities to immerse ourselves in these worlds. Some may succumb to holo-addiction but not all of us. Some of us just enjoy the ability to visit other places without the hassle of luggage and pat downs.
I finished Outlast and Donkey Kong Country Returns. I’ve written up my thoughts on the Wii title and will scribble out something for Outlast later this week.
In the meantime I’ve given up on Battlefield 4 until they fix the net code and started The Witcher 2 on PC. I’m enjoying it more than the first Witcher game. I wish there was more finesse was applied to the art direction though. Everything is a bit too striking and not everything meshes well with each other.