Archive for Morality

Grey, The new Black and White.

Posted in Computers, Game Design, Game Design Essays, Games, Rants with tags , , , , , , , , , , on July 6, 2008 by Matthew VanDevander

Bear with me, because this is a bit of a long rant, but it’s hopefully worth the read…

Alright, so lets talk about morality and moral choices in games. There’s obviously a lot of games out there that provide moral choices as a core game concept: the Fable series, Bioshock, almost all of Bioware’s games… So all of these games are supposed to be centered around this idea of moral choices between good and evil.

And the basic way in which these games implement morality is with what basically accounts to a slider with good on one end and evil on the other. So in order to become an evil character you have to have a lot of evil points, or if you’re wanting to play a good character you’ve got to have a lot of those points. But the problem is that in order for this to work, and for the game be able to determine where you are on this slider, every decision in the game has be reduced into a simple black and white decision; one choice will yield good points and the other choice yields evil points. Unfortunately, this also makes the most of the game’s choices uninteresting and defeats the initial draw the whole moral choice idea had in the first place, because all of the choices are so easy to make. Continue reading

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