Wednesday, 19 July 2017

A word on Immersive Simulations

Coming off the back of completing Prey, Dishonored 2 and Deus Ex: Human Revolution + Mankind Divided over a period of 2 glorious gaming months, I felt compelled to post some thoughts about this most rare and incredible of gaming experiences: The Immersive Sim.

IMMERSIVE SIMS ARE RARE. And they probably always will be. Mainstream gaming tastes do not, mostly, match up with the kind of mature, considered, well-designed and carefully crafted immersive experiences that have been created by incredible developers such as Creative Assembly (Alien Isolation), Eidos Montreal (Deus Ex: HR + MD), Ion Storm (Original Deus Ex), Arkane (Arx Fatalis and Dishonored) and the oh so mighty Looking Glass Studios (Ultima Underworld, System Shock, Thief). These are special, deep gaming experiences which don't come along very often because the market does not "demand" them nearly as much as Generic Sports Game -insert year-, Generic Open World Collectathon, Generic First Person Shooter, etc.

This is sad. There is art to the game logic / visual / sound / level design to any game but with Immersive Sims these things become far, far more important and are often executed to a standard that very few other developers match. I cannot wait to play the new System Shock and Underworld games. The rewarding learning, exploring and discovery offered by Immersive Sims are the gaming experiences I crave the most. Apart from Demon's Souls and classic 90s shooters like Doom, Blood and Descent... most other gaming experiences just fall flat for me.

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