Narrative in Video Games #17: Tales of Xillia

Tales of Xillia is the thirteenth main entry in the long-running Tales series, and the first game made exclusively for the PlayStation 3. Tales stands out among other JRPG franchises with its fast, real-time combat and strong focus on character interactions through optional skits. So how does Xillia stack up in this storied franchise?

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Narrative in Video Games #16: Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon

The 2001 launch of the Gamecube was something of a departure for Nintendo. After launching the NES, SNES, and Nintendo 64 with Super Mario Bros, Super Mario World, and Super Mario 64 respectively, the gaming public expected the new console to launch with its own Mario game as well. Instead, we got the cult favorite spinoff Luigi’s Mansion that won players over with its palpable atmosphere and undeniable charm. After more than a decade had passed, many believed the game to be a one and done experiment. At least until 2013, when the long-awaited sequel Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon launched on the Nintendo 3DS.

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Narrative in Video Games: Reading Responses

As part of my independent study during the Spring 2016 semester, I made written responses to some of the literature written about the video games industry. Click the link for each PDF.

A Mind Forever Voyaging: A History of Storytelling in Video Games – Dylan Holmes

Persuasive Games: The Expressive Power of Video Games – Ian Bogost

First Person: New Media as Story, Performance, and Game – Pat Harrigan and Noah Wardrip-Fruin


Narrative in Video Games #15: Xenoblade Chronicles 3D, Part One

Xenoblade Chronicles’ North American release was unusual to say the least. As the 2011 release date for its European version loomed, there were still no plans for a North American release. This prompted the consumer petition “Operation Rainfall” to convince Nintendo of America to release a North American version of Xenoblade, as well as two other Wii games. All three games were eventually localized, but Xenoblade was relegated to a retailer exclusive with demand greatly exceeding its limited supply. This arbitrary limitation led to another as the game was re-released in 2015 as Xenoblade Chronicles 3D exclusive to the New Nintendo 3DS, rather than the standard model. But after jumping through all those hoops to play either version, is the game worth it? In Part One we’ll run through mechanics.

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