While there are pundits out there who wish to convince you that single-player, story-driven games are dead and that multiplayer must rule everything, there are plenty of success stories to prove otherwise. The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim may be the biggest example of recent years, and one studio at least has taken notice. Remedy, the studio behind Alan Wake, has revealed that Skyrim inspires it to persist with narrative-led titles, its success providing some much-needed encouragement.
“The Call of Dutys and the Battlefields are doing extremely well in the US,” franchise development head Oskari Hakkinen told Eurogamer. ”Those are the type of games that are in popular demand, so it’s really positive to see Skyrim and other RPG games that have a lot of story in be successful as well. It gives us motivation to do story-driven games, because there’s obviously an audience out there of people who enjoy story as well.
“Seeing something like that being successful, we don’t need to consciously try to make our stories any less than they are, not try to make them any simpler. Our stories are not necessarily complicated, but our games are very story heavy. And, just to see games like Skyrim succeed, it’s like, let’s not try to make it any less story-heavy.”
We’ve recently seen story-driven successes like BioShock and Metro 2033 cram multiplayer into proceedings, just to fill some imaginary obligation, and it’s foolish. Skyrim works perfectly well as a solo affair with a focus on its story, and I dare say a fair few games would benefit more from simply being allowed to do what they do best. I’m glad that at least one studio has taken notice.
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