Can’t we have more story driven superhero games?
Injustice: Gods Among Us is certainly not a terrible game. It fared well with critics and gamers. Heck, it has a favorable rating on Metacritic. However, the comic superhero fan inside of me often wishes for something more.
The game was accompanied by a comic tie-in that served as a prequel to the game’s events. I decided to give it a shot and I was hooked after the first issue. The story was amazing and it posed a compelling moral conundrum that reeled me right in.
I was quite disappointed that the story was simply a backdrop to the arcade fighting game. It deserved more than that. I could easily picture it as the story line of a BioWare or other choice driven games. I wanted to experience the moral dilemmas of Batman or Superman, not just beat the crap of either these “heroes.”
There are games in the past like Marvel: Ultimate Alliance wherein it attempts to put an RPG spin to superhero games. I enjoyed that game very much, but it was really more of a campy action game than a “narrative heavy” and complex choice game.
We’ve gone a long way from idealized superheroes who didn’t have any flaws. I knew a lot of people, myself included, who used to dislike Superman because he was always portrayed as “perfect” in mainstream media. Yet, modern interpretations of him and other heroes are more realistic. Look at the Injustice comic and Christopher Nolan’s superhero films.
Sure, we have games like Infamous because that features a protagonist with super powers and there’s morality system. It’s similar, but it’s still different from superhero culture.
Is it possible for a video game to recreate a world where it’s perfectly normal for people to fly in tights? Are there any repercussions to wearing a costume? Developers could easily draw from Marvel’s Civil War narrative and put players right in the middle of it. Would you choose to reveal your identity to make the public feel safer, or would you oppose it to protect yourself and loved ones?
While it’s fun to read and watch about this, I think it would be more compelling if we are placed right in the middle of it. I remember reading a comic called Irredeemable wherein a superhero akin to Superman couldn’t handle the pressures of being the universe’s savior. What does he do? He obliterates his entire home city in rage.
It would be interesting to be placed in his shoes, or as an observing hero. Would you agree and follow him, or would you oppose?
I would say that the Batman Arkham games are a step forward, but it developers could still do a lot more to maximize the potential of a superhero game. I actually found the TV spot for the game extremely compelling.
I would want to play Bruce Wayne from the early beginnings and shape Batman the way I choose to. Would he be like Frank Miller’s Batman that’s “violent” and “cruel?” I don’t know, it could be up to the player. Heck, it would be fun to play a completely new hero from scratch or someone we already know.
What do you think?