Well, it’s been a while and I figured that I should get back to trying to complete my 30 days of gaming, as suggested by Codie Collinge.
I thought that favourite genre would be a breeze. I went to my cupboard and basically took note of the games that were in there. I found that I have far more first person shooter games than anything else. That surprised me as I don’t really think I’m particularly good at first person shooters. Even though recently I’ve been deeply immersed in Borderlands 2 I think that it’s not the FPSiness of the game that I like. It’s the style and the graphics. Sure the gameplay is good but that’s not what I really enjoy about that.
I think that I actually prefer third person action games, like Tomb Raider or Darksiders 2. I’m not sure why though. Perhaps there is more scope for a variety of activities, and often a deeper narrative, which seems somehow more rewarding that you usually get in a FPS game.
The latest release of Tomb Raider did a great job of transitioning Lara Croft from a slightly nervous young girl who is way out of her depth forcing her through desperation to evolve into the confident character we recognise from the rest of the series. The feeling of evolution is echoed throughout the game as you upgrade your skills and become able to reach previously inaccessible areas.
Darksiders 2 is less serious, but is still driven by a great narrative, and I can remember being very fond of third person action games growing up. I remember loving Soul Reaver on the PS1 (despite the extremely disappointing ending) and I also remember playing the original Tomb Raider to death over the course of about a week.
Games designers might tell you that this preference for 3rd person games tells you something about me. They might tell you that I feel more empathy for a character that I can see rather than a character that I’m looking through the eyes of. Overall though I think that genre isn’t really of much consequence. There are great FPS games and there are terrible FPS games, and there are great 3rd person action games and there are terrible ones.
Another genre of games that I don’t play that much, but I think deserve at least a tip of the proverbial hat is RPG games. I’d never played an RPG game before Final Fantasy VII and I don’t think I’ve played one I enjoyed as much since. The genre deserves a nod because I think that the idea of levelling up, and progressing statistics has spread across every other genre. At one time this was referred to as “RPG elements” and now it just seems to be standard practice.
I haven’t even mentioned Legend of Zelda, or Mario, but you’ve got to draw the line somewhere, and I kind of feel like those are a little bit obvious. I don’t think I really have a favourite genre, but if I did, it would be “story driven 3rd person action adventure puzzle game with RPG elements”. How’s that for sitting on the fence?