I enjoy well made video games, preferably Japanese role playing games (JRPGs) with strong characters and story lines (e.g., the older Final Fantasy’s, Legend of Legaia, Shadow Hearts 1 & 2, the Pokemon series, etc.). I just finished my first tactical role playing game, Fire Emblem: Birthright, on the Nintendo 3DS. Overall it was a good game that kept my interest, with a pleasant soundtrack and a broad set of characters to learn about as the 27 chapters progressed. Like with other JRPGs, some personal annoyances popped up: sexualized females and some awkward sexualized scenes.* However, I appreciated the bigger picture of the rivaling kingdoms and the sibling groups love and support for each other. The artwork was bright, beautiful and airy. The story will be shelved in my mind, commingling with my subconscious, giving inspiration to my future writing.
There are many scenes from JRPGS that stayed with me throughout the years. Tifa and Cloud’s scene under the stars in FF7; Yuri’s return back and forth to the alter dimension cemetery and the persistent masks in Shadow Hearts 1; the healing of the trees to push back the mist in Legend of Legaia; Tidus’ somber, opening narration to FFX playing against the beautiful score of Return to Zanarkand.
Video games are a mixture of the arts: visual, theatrical, performing, musical and written. It’s an experience unique to its own medium. Depending on the game and style, the viewer interacts with the game, becomes immersed in a fantasy world and sometimes chooses actions that affect other characters and the story line. To me, it’s much like walking through a book come to life–you’re in it and around it, breathing in the the soil and grass of the wilds. Your imagination provides the rest.
Any other writers out there who draw inspiration from video games? Would love to hear from you in the comment section below.
Happy writing and gaming; don’t forget to tip your Kupo a Kupo nut or three.
*As a female gamer, I have either returned or passed on games for how females are portrayed or how sex is handled. Fire Emblem overall didn’t cross the line too badly and kept things respectable (and humorous), especially for teens and older. But as always, do your own research. Opinions vary.
Song: “Video Games“, by Lana Del Rey