Thursday, August 19, 2010

Here There Be Sheep

Some days, you're minding your own business and then you see a new Atlus game trailer that reminds you how absolutely boring the vast majority of videogames are. Today was one of those days. The trailer in question is for Atlus's upcoming game Catherine and, well... see for yourself.

(Heads-up: the video isn't exactly NSFW, but it would certainly attract some askanceness should you watch it at your cubicle. Also, it contains freaky sheep.)


I know very little about the game other than that it was made by the folks who made the Persona games. I haven't played those, but after reading some really positive things about Persona 3 Portable, I'm halfway considering tracking down a used PSP to check them out.

Wait, who am I kidding? I am totally broke. However, I do consider the Persona games (and actually many other non-Final Fantasy Japanese titles) to be a bit of a blindspot for me. More and more, it's starting to feel like a blindspot that I want to address.

But more than that, the Catherine trailer is just another reminder that when it comes down to it, the vast majority of western games are phenomenally derivative. For example, as excited as I am for Dragon Age 2, that game's recently-released CGI trailer was the very definition of "boilerplate action-fantasy."

Of course, not all boring games are equal - with good writing and design, I'll still enjoy uniting the kingdom and saving the world and the yadda, and the yadda. But I see something like Catherine and I can't help but wonder: What if more mainstream games were this wildly different?
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