Monday, April 28, 2014

The Incognito Story (And It's Hidden Benefits)

There are a lot of games that don't need much of a story. There's a princess that's been kidnapped, so, you know, run to the right where the castle is to try to save her. Done. There are some bad dudes doing some bad things, so, you know, you should punch and kick everyone bad dude you see (which will likely be every dude you see). Easy. There are zombies on your lawn. Obviously you should plant some anti-zombie plants to get them off your lawn. Say. No. More!

In games like these, it seems like less is always more, though there's a surprising amount you can do with less. Take this awesome, recently discovered truth hidden in Trials Fusion for example (and as the video warns, spoiler warning for the story you didn't even know existed), a game that, until its second sequel was only ever about riding your motorcycle from start to finish as quickly as possible:

A hidden story like this is perfect because it's entirely possible to ignore and not miss a single aspect of the gameplay itself, but if you do notice it, and start paying attention, it adds a whole new unexpectedly rewarding layer to the overall gaming experience. Totally win-win!

I personally love making these discoveries whenever possible. Games like The Last of Us, which has its main story being presented to you front and center, also has tons of smaller hidden stories - some mere snippets, some fully fleshed out - throughout the post-apocalyptic environment, which can be found in notes, journals, and scrawling on walls. To plenty of people, it's just useless crap they happily ignore, but for players like me, its the cherry on top of my awesome time playing in this world.

Anyone know of any other hidden gems like the ones I've mentioned here?


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