||Are Complex Comic Backstories Damaging Videogames?
Posted on: November 22, 2011 by admin.
Are Complex Comic Backstories Damaging Videogames?
If you've ever played a comic-book-based videogame, you'll know that it's important that everything stays as basic as possible. Batman Arkham Asylum had a large cast, but a load of backstory in the form of collectible biographies. Spiderman titles tend to introduce simplistic villains with no particular backstory on the assumption that if they look evil, they're going down. But what about the more complex tales?
Comic books are famous for having hundreds, if not thousands of issues of backstory for any one character, and this makes telling a videogame tale about them inherently difficult. Whether you're trying to explain how Superman actually hates villain #9282 because he lost out to him in a PartyPoker.it
championship four thousand issues ago, or you're attempting to script an encounter with years of history behind it for those who know Batman only by his outfit and dead parents, it can be really tough.
At the same time, you can't ignore the property, as anyone who knows DC and Marvel (and the other imprints) knows how protective they are over their various properties. To ignore their backstory would be to dumb down the interpretation of the source material, and that would lead to a revoked licence and no game, so that's out. But what are the alternatives? Developers must feel like they're walking a fine line with these properties, and it does make you realise why the story sometimes feels either too complex or condescendingly simplistic.
However, it's interesting to see original interpretations of certain comic book characters, and although we're still waiting for that in the form of, say, Spiderman as a point-n-click adventure game, or a turn-based strategy game featuring the Sinister Six. Weird sounding stuff, but at least those genres lend themselves more to lore than the average brawler, right?
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