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Video games != movies

Clive Thompson at Slate has an interesting piece about why video games should not be like movies. From Oughtta Stay Out of Pictures:

Playing a game, any kind of game, is inherently open-ended and interactive. Whether you’re playing chess, Go, or Super Mario Bros., you don’t really know how things will wind up or what will happen along the way. Narrative, on the other hand, is neither open-ended nor interactive. When you’re watching a story, you surrender masochistically to the storyteller. The fun is in not having control, in sitting still and going “Yeah? And then what happened? And then?”

That’s why cut scenes are such a massive pain in the neck–they enforce passivity.

It sometimes happens that I read an article and feel that I could have made the author’s point better than he did. This is one of those times. Still, it’s a good read.