Something occurred to me while playing Final Fantasy XI. I just don’t like it. I’ve tried beating it a few times but every time I start I get bored quickly. During the last round of L’Cie loathing I realized that it’s the cutscenes that throw me off. Now this got me thinking, why don’t I like them this time around? I mean I put up with so many of them for most of my life. What’s the deal? Well I think I’ve boiled it down to three distinct reasons.
1. As a writer one of the first things you learn is the term IN MEDIA RES which is Latin for into the middle of affairs. You are taught that in order to keep your readers enthralled you must start somewhere in the middle. But the trick from there is to keep moving forward. The whole “an object in motion tends to stay in motion” comes to mind. Once you are moving forward through the storyline, taking us out of the action and throwing us into flashbacks is just plain jarring. I’m willing to forgive this once or twice but if your game is based off of these “gems” of info, you’ve lost me.
2. Characters are now able to speak. Some of you younglings may not remember a time when one was required to read the dialog throughout an entire game. Cutsecenes used to offer an insight into what a character sounded like when it was hard to discern from the text. For example: It’s hard to read sarcasm. (especially without the sarcmark) But now, as we chug along I just want to shout, “Yeah, I get it already!”
3. Before you send a barrage of angry comments you need to know that I used to love cutscenes, (Like when Sector 7 was blown to smithereens? You know what I’m talking about) so what happened? Well in game graphics are finally up to par with the video of old. You can seamlessly play through major events with so many high quality games these days. When it’s not an option it becomes really obvious.
So what this all comes down to is this, I’m a fan of RPG’s for the fantastical worlds. It’s the same reason I read so many books. I love to be completely immersed. In any game I play or book I read, when I’m pulled out mentally I get frustrated. I know there are many games that can pull it off, (Hello love scenes in Dragon Age) but in the end I’d rather play then watch.
So what say you? Do you love them or hate them? Sound off below.