Tonight’s Gamelab discussion on gameplay has galvanized for me more than ever the belief that the whole gameplay vs narrative debate is pointless and who cares. Not because it is frustrating or because I am indifferent, but because the whole thing is irrelevant. We will never reach a concencus on this because everyone has a different opinion, and that is why we dont need a consensus.
Whenever you make something there will always be people who won’t like it, or at least remain indifferent about it, even when that something is as big as Call of Duty or Pulp Fiction or The Beatles. It’s simple, if you like something, you like it, and if you don’t, you don’t. There is no right or wrong in there. You can of course strive to maximize the amount of people who do like it, but before you do, ask yourself if it helps your goals as a designer? There is of course the business aspect, but in the end we are all in this because we like making games. We like doing what we do, and why should we sacrifice part of that to please more people?
There will always be people who will want to play another Crysis, and people who will want another Super Crate Box. We don’t have to win over all of them. Find the niche that speaks to you and forget about the rest. If you put your heart in something you’ll find a way to make it work.