SPOILER-FREE – no story discussion, all footage and mechanical analysis is from the early game (seeing as a few people have asked).
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(Review code provided by Playdead PR)
So I’ve been thinking a lot about Playdead’s follow-up to Limbo, Inside. Not necessarily about the political and sociological critique it presents in its story, but about how this game opens up a discussion regarding the concept of ‘cinematic gaming’.
‘Cinematic’ is the most overused term in gaming history (being attributed to any game with cutscenes in a bid to ‘stack up’ to Hollywood), and this overuse has kept at bay a potentially interesting conversation about how game development is genuinely influenced by cinematic techniques, and how this affects the player experience. Inside acts as perhaps the keenest example of framing and pacing being influenced by cinematic techniques in recent memory.
Consider this piece a part review, part analysis of these techniques. In this episode of Writing on Games, I break down some examples of this cinematic influence at play, but also talk about why this potentially creates an identity crisis for the game that I’m not sure it escapes from.
Ninja Gaiden footage from ThereturnofUdth, Super Mario Bros footage from Nintendo News, Gears of War footage from Xbox, Call of Duty footage from Activision.
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