Should We Be Making Games Noir

It's an older musing, but one well worth a read through — a quick history of a few decades of film, from the big budget, big blockbuster hits of the '30s to the film noirs of the '40s and '50s - frequently low or limited budget pictures that fall squarely into the B movie category. Born from pragmatism but still managing to be more affecting than many of the big budget fluff films of the same era, film noir and its history may provide a paradigm for games of the future. Why?

When your game is backed by tens of millions of dollars, you can't use it as a testing ground for wild new mechanics and dynamics never tried before; however, when you're building a low-budget 2D platformer, even your successful experiments won't make an impact on the medium at large, the "big games" that get everyone talking. What we've got left is a huge gulf between popular, full-experience 3D action/adventure games that need to be financial blockbusters to survive, and marginalized casual/handheld/movie licensed games that don't register on the mass consciousness radar. We need our B films. We need that freedom to explore truly meaningful new avenues of interaction, quickly and nimbly, without the pressure of an eight-figure budget and multi-year dev schedule weighing down on the whole enterprise. Noir already scouted this territory for us.

It's a thought provoking piece on a subject that gets talked about a lot and well worth a read through.

Noir [Fullbright]


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