I watched a streamer play Late Shift a few days ago, and thought that it will redefine the interactive video experience. Late shift is a movie, choice-based adventure game. It’s similar to the Telltale games in terms of mechanics, but its choice of using directed live action videos instead of animated game graphics brings it closer towards a movie-type experience.
Next Generation Home Movies
Late Shift made me wonder about the possibility of an interactive movie experience in small group settings, where the audience decides the course of action to take and how the ending unfolds. Watching such a movie in a home setting promotes interaction between the audience and allows them to have a part in how the content unfolds. Having different story developments promotes replayability and allows the group to replay the content. Currently, these experiences are mostly single-player, but I believe that a movie-style choose your own adventure type of game like Late Shift can work well for a group setting because of its similarity to a movie.
Implementation and discussion
With phone applications being used as television remote controls, they can certainly be adapted as a choice selection mechanism. Certainly, seeing the decisions of others can be a point for further discussion and sharing of viewpoints. This encourages discussion and also allows for an enlightening experience that shows and deals with social issues.
Choose-your-own-adventure games grants the audience control over the cinematic experience. This empowers the audience and creates an interactive experience that involves the audience. This allows memorable moments to be created by the audience themselves in addition to the viewing experience.
I played many games when I was young. Feeling different levels of frustration was not uncommon. One game, however, took frustration to a whole new level — DotA. Player vs. player (PVP) games by nature have a tendency to draw out frustration from players, which often manifests in the form of toxicity. Several factors play a part in this.
When I came across DotA, I was about fourteen years old. As a highly competitive teenager, I took my game sessions seriously. Winning is akin to life and death — it defines my competency and place amongst my peers. For games such as League of Legends, Dota 2 and Overwatch, many of the players fall within the teenage or young adults age group. Although games are designed for fun experiences, PVP games can get pretty serious for players of this age group.
In a game of League of Legends, it is common to invest about 30-60 minutes per session. The longer a game goes, the more the investment from the player. Believe me, losing after investing 60 minutes in the game never feels good. Being denied something that you worked hard for is just devastating. Games with lower average play sessions are less frustrating in this sense as the investment required from the player is lower.
Competency level amongst the player’s friends is perhaps the key factor that drives frustration. In a social setting where all your friends are talking about the game and playing together, performing well is correlated to your social status and popularity.
How it all explodes — Losing and toxicity
All of the above factors culminate together when we start to lose in a game. Upon losing, we begin to rationalize why and we often blame our teammates instead ourselves because it is way easier to do so. Whether or not our teammates underperformed usually isn’t the issue. It’s often the losing part that triggers this. As a result, we are inclined to say harsh words in impulse because we’re so emotionally charged — toxic words. Hopefully, understanding this will help us control our emotions better in the future and ensure that our friends are no hurt when playing together. After all, games are supposed to promote fun interactions between friends.