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George Lucas questions integrity of storytelling in gaming

on 24 June 2013

Ragnar Tornquist, director of adventure game Dreamfall Chapters, openly disagreed with George Lucas' statements against the overall progress of storytelling in video games.

Lucas spoke to Variety.com a few weeks ago and said, "The second you get the controller something turns off in the heart, and it becomes a sport," though he did claim that gamers would empathize with cutscenes.

During Rezzed 2013, which is a major PC-gaming expo, Tornquist disputed Lucas' proclamations live on stage: "Games are where storytelling is being experimented on the most," Tornquist began. "Take Journey, one of the best games I've ever played - it tells an amazing story through pictures and sound that you just wouldn't see in a TV show. 

"It made me so angry because I'm currently playing The Last of Us... I'm not going to spoil anything - but the beginning of the game sets up this great emotional connection... The controller turns on, and your heart does not turn off. You feel desperate."

Each gamer has a game like this, including Heavy Rain, Shadow of the Colossus, Journey, and the freshly-released The Last of Us to name only a few.

Still, Lucas has generated one of the most followed series in all of cinematic history, so one cannot simply throw his perceptions under the bus. However, in the same interview with Variety, he made mention that video games lack authentic love stories:

"The big game of the next five years will be a game where you empathise very strongly with the characters and it's aimed at women and girls. They like empathetic games. That will be a huge hit and as a result that will be the Titanic of the game industry, where suddenly you've done an actual love story or something and everybody will be like 'where did that come from?' Because you've got actual relationships instead of shooting people."

Certainly, a closing argument such as his previous statement leaves much to be desired, considering there have been plenty of highly influential games that exclude any form of firearm, and his gross generalization of the perception of women is exactly that. Clearly, Tornquist can see the potential of the gaming industry, and developers like Naughty Dog, Quantic Dream, and Kojima Productions prove that not all great stories, even if they include gunplay, have to be about love.

Via Eurogamer