Aspects of Play: The Wolf Among Us

As part of the module, the task for the duration of 3 weeks, was to look into various types of games within 3 specific bands of play to fully comprehend the scope and ideology behind the notion of play. The band this game ‘The Wolf Among Us’ belongs to is the Console.


When playing The Wolf Among Us, I personally found that I belonged to the following categories of play in relation to Roger Caillois’ theory of play; Mimicry and Illinx.

In terms of what the game offers in terms of Mimicry, it’d be safe to say the use of a playable character covers it. It’s covers Illinx mainly from situations in which the playable character is hit over the head with various objects (trust me, this happens a few times) and disorients the player by shaking the camera. The game doesn’t promote Agonistic attributes because it’s a single-player interactive story based game that has no inherent competitive elements. There’s nothing within the game that can happen by chance as it’s a particularly scripted sequence of events that occur so nothing out of the ordinary happens.

In terms of the elements within the game that I like, I would have to say that the role playing aspect of the game is something I admire. In the sense that you can choose to direct the protagonist in various ways (Being kind or generally being unpleasant) of which can shape playthroughs in very different ways that result in different narrative outcomes.

State of Flow, was it achieved?

No. I say this simply because it isn’t a game that requires strenuous amounts of attention. Sure there are moments that require immediate attention due to narrative cues disappearing after a certain period of time, but nothing within the gameplay, even the quick time events, caused me to enter the state of flow.

If I were designing a game similar to this, I would most probably open the game world up (or maybe this is my bias towards open-world games talking) because as it is, it’s an interactive sequence of events with little in terms of ‘gameplay’. It’s effectively a ‘walk from A to B and choose a dialogue option for the voice actor to repeat’ piece of medium. Not to say this is a bad thing, I just think that the gameplay and interaction could be done in a far more immersive way that involves the player in a more intense way than simply ‘click button repeatedly’.

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