Storytelling in Video Games

Storytelling is an important part of human culture, and is a huge part of making a memorable game. During this trimester at University we created a few games that required us to tell some sort of story to them. When creating Tunnel Vision, I wanted to convey a feeling of emotion and a backstory to the player without physically telling them about this story. 

For Tunnel Vision, I mainly used the point-of-view and the show dont tell techniques highlighted in the Gamasutra post that I linked below. I used the POV technique in Tunnel Vision because I wanted to portray a feeling of emotion to the player. Instead of using a third person camera, I used a first person POV which puts the player in the shoes of the character. This is an effective technique when trying to portray a feeling of emotion to the player because instead of watching someone expereince an event, they are experiencing it themselves. For example, in Tunnel Vision, as you move through the hallway, all the other characters in the game are looking directly at you. In first-person, the characters are looking you directly in the eyes, which is much more effective at getting an emotional response than the NPC's looking at your character. 

The second technique used was the "show don't tell technique". When playing Tunnel Vision, the player expereinces a change in movement speed, colour saturation and blurriness. These changes occur as you move through a crowd of people in a hallway. As the player, you expereinces these changes first hand, which envokes a feeling of emotion and gets the player thinking about what is causing this change. 

This is only one example of how different storytelling techniques are used in video games. I will definately be referencing these techniques in future projects. If you are interested in reading up about storytelling in video games, I have linked a few posts about it below.


Gamasutra
BigFishGames Blog