The Sims, Our Town, and the Role of the Director

            In 1938, Thornton Wilder published Our Town, a three-act play that tells a story of the day-to-day life in the fictional town of Grover’s Corners.  It won a Pulitzer Prize the same year, was produced the next with Orson Welles in the leading role, and is performed countless times each year to this day.  Our Town has become well known in the theater community as a play that varies wildly in quality based on the director of a given production.  It is a work of art that specializes in opportunity – it scales seemingly infinitely in proportion to the vision of the director.  Thousands of high school productions have given Our Town the reputation of being a very long, very boring show.  Critically lauded productions in New York and film, however, have proven to be some of the most rewarding experiences to be had in theater in the past century.  It all depends on the director.

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What Earthbound's Soundtrack Says

            At NYU’s Practice 2013, Warren Spector took the stage and presented an argument that to many of the conference’s attendees seemed to be an attack on what has become the traditional “narrative game.”  His perspective: that games that do not deliver their story procedurally – that is to say, games with stories that are inherently linear – may as well be movies or novels.

            It can be difficult to extrapolate Mr. Spector’s claims beyond the past fifteen years or so – the games he mentioned, from Deus Ex to Heavy Rain, were mostly contemporary representations of the type of games he supports or admonishes.  Mr. Spector’s argument, however, is based on an assumption – that the stories ‘narrative’ games tell would work in any other medium.  He is incorrect in this assumption.  Most game stories are unique to their medium, and there are few better examples than 1995’s EarthBound.

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I Quit

This is the second game I've created as a student at the Game Center.  For some reason, since I turned in the assignment I've slowly become somewhat soured on the game.  This may be a result of my getting a lower score than I did on my previous effort, or it could be a result of having spent a ton of time with it over a very short period; either way, replaying it now I am much more positive on it than I have been recently.

I will note first of all that, having completed this project, and feeling somewhat proficient in Unity at this point, I feel as though I have to work very hard in the future to avoid a problem that both of the games I have created have suffered from thus far: I tend to work invery established genres in the hope of creating a 'sufficiently good' game.

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