Original post by kseh
It seems your position, Wavinator, is that games like FF7 and so forth that take away choices from the user in exchange for a narrative, are less than games.
Not "less than." That connotes a value judgement that I don''t like. I''d say, rather, that they''re "not quite games." They''ve got some game element, but mostly the focus is story. I wish the term electronic story had caught on. (BTW, much of my agitation comes from having these forms of entertainment marketed to me, under the label ''game,'' when there''s not much replayability to them. I''d rather avoid them, sort of like how fantasy fans might avoid the science fiction books I enjoy.)
I say that FF7 has enough in common with hide n'' seek (which has been a game longer than chess) to be considered a game.
Hmmm... Is h&s a ''game'', or is it really just a form of play? Take bouncing a ball against a wall and catching it. Is that, completely and totally by itself, a game? I don''t think so. But if you add a score, and a goal ("don''t drop the ball, or hit this spot only"), and maybe another player... then I think it becomes a game.
I can also say that both have a beginning state and and ending state which the player attempts to reach limited by rules that programmers impose on the player. In Civ there''s one of 2 goals, conquer the world or win the space race. In FF7 it''s pretty much kill the bad guy at the end.
I agree with the broad definition, but I think you lose a lot by cutting out the details. For instance, think about all the steps that it takes to win FF7 vs. Civ. How much do they vary? What resources do you manage? What trade-offs or decisions do you make along the way?
When I put a puzzle together that''s why I''m doing it. Not for the choices which I can make, but simply to do it.
Yes, but a puzzle is not a game. As Greg Costikyan says, no one would call a crossword puzzle a game.
A puzzle is (usually) static, made of predefined parts that are meant to be solved with logic or experimentation. They tend not to change with the player''s actions, the way a game does. This doesn''t mean that games with puzzles are not games, just that, like story, it''s a continuum made of tradeoffs.
I may not have met the goal you set out, Wavinator, but there''s a (perhaps slim) chance I have at least changed your mind.
I appreciate the spirit! Perhaps I''ve given you insight as well.
Just waiting for the mothership...