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Blog: Multisensory Storytelling in VR

ITPG-GT 2347-1

Tutor: Winslow




Recently I have been thinking that what it really needs to make a perfect game loop?

Is it the well-calculated level design and resource control that keep players playing over again and again? The narrative story and the huge, well-rounded game outlook? Or is it the aesthetics, which elevates the game to an arty piece level?

Pearl seems to violates all of the above, yet it's still a powerful piece. 

Usually, a game seen as an art piece - well, if we do see it as a sort kind of 'art', is different than other forms. That's mainly because of its interactivity: as game designers we can't fully decide what the players' behaviors, instead we make rules to guide their decision makings. Through the limited resources and open but still limited decisions players are supposed to make all the time, game designers' voice is delivered, and a well-developed player experience is formed.

What most impressive design Pearl has delivered to me is that the players (me) are having extremely limited power of decision-making, yet to some extent they can view the whole thing as a god-perspective, and their desire for control can be fully satisfied.

I guess that's partly because of the possibility VR has brought us; but the idea of 'fixing, but not completely fixing' the player is truly a smart move. Most of the time we are sitting in the passenger seat for an immersive experience, but we can also move around and see the family's story from different angles. We can observe the rain drops on the window during the road trip, and we can also stay in the car to see the family chatting outside the vehicle, or when the car is towed away, and see them being further apart.

Without the resource/level-calculation debates, the game designer uses a great way to deliver its voice; it tells a story, and we hear it, with tears in our eyes.

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