Serious Business

A game that takes itself serious; a rare sight. For some reason, though, many, if not most, gamers will complain, if a game doesn´t make fun of itself or just features some humor. Usually, such games are called “taking itself too serious“, when all said game did was being serious, no goofing around, no sillyness.

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Many years of gaming have made me love games that allow to immerse myself into. Jumping into another world and breathing a different air. A game world that constantly attempts silly jokes breaks this atmosphere, though. One of the best examples of this problem would be Fable 2. On one hand, you have a serious story, a threatening villain…on the other hand, all the social interaction options look like they´re out of another game. That´s also a problem a lot of cartoons, TV-shows or anime have: A certain event is being built upon to, and just before the event´s climax, something silly happens. Like you´re in a life-threatening situation and suddenly someone throws in a “funny” comment. Or the show follows real-world physics, but just that moment someone falls 20 meters and simply gets up as if nothing happened.

Games do not take themselves serious enough. Not every game should be serious, but as of right now, hardly any games do. And, of course, if they do, pseudo-elitist gamers make fun of them as “taking themselves too serious”. For example, I definitely wouldn´t hate on a little, funny new character that accompanies Shepard in the next Mass Effect-game. Maybe some kind of cute looking alien, half as big as a human, giving funny comments, but all the other characters know that it actually is a dependable teammate. You also have such elements in the Zelda-games, just look at Tingle or the Ooccoo-lady from Twilight Princess. Or take all Final Fantasy-games. There are characters like Xell or Selphie (FF8) that make for a lighter atmosphere at times, but they don´t break the overall tone of the game.

Surely, it doesn´t help when pseudo-elitist gamers ridicule such games. I think there´s a huge problem between those gamers that play these games just for their puzzles, their challenge, and those gamers that really want to get into the game, experience something. Let´s be honest: There´s a million of games of the former type. Not so much for the latter.

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