A Search for Lost Adventure

So, I was watching the Netflix movie BLAME! the other day and it reminded me of how I once had an insatiable appetite for games that told great (and sometimes even not so great) stories.

Half Life, System Shock, Fallout, Diablo, even the comparatively straightforward Doom would keep me glued to my PC for hours, lost in the pixelated tales they wove and driven by the ticking narrative doomsday clock that only I could stop.

And it occurred to me that I hadn’t really had a great story driven game in a very, very long time.

Open world games, on the other hand, were something I used to dream of immersing myself in and are now not uncommon. But, while their expansiveness is sometimes breathtaking, I’ve often found that the ability to stop defeating ultimate evil so I could go fishing for a few days or mine moon gold really takes the wind out of a story’s sails😄.

For instance, while I love having the galaxy spread out before me in Elite, the (undoubtedly true) realization that most planets are either gas giants or rocky crater scapes tends to produce a sort of planetary ennui in me. I’m not searching for the Net Zero Gene, or the Cosmo DNA, or trying to stop Shodan.

In short, I, as the gamer, don’t really matter.

So, I’d be interested in what all your feelings are about it. Are there any games in the pipeline that you loved or are eagerly looking forward to?

Or, is the great age of computer storytelling a thing of the past?


Why I love RPG’s is to be able to lose myself in a character of my choosing/creation or a character that is created for me (e.g. Geralt) and their story.

I don’t think that games that immerse you as the protagonist in a great story are dead, it is just that they tend to be single player games and there are so many ‘sandbox’ games out there feeding the multiplayer market.

The game I played most recently that had a story that sucked me in from the beginning and was populated by genuinely interesting characters was ‘Disco Elysium’, I don’t think that I have ever been more engrossed by a simple ‘point & click’ game.

I am looking forward to ‘Starfield’. I was really happy when I just checked and saw the release date was 09.06.23… Then realised that is September, not next month :frowning:


Starfield is one I am looking extremely forward too.

Stalker 2 coming in Dec is also on my list.

I miss the Old bioware games, A game that could tell a story but also let you shape it.

Unfortunately in this day and age of multiplayer online shooters, Single player stories have taken a back seat. We no longer have the attention span to play a 20 hour Call of Duty campaign, Modern warfare had some of the best Single player campaigns.

I forgot to mention the Outer Worlds, It kept me coming back for more as well.


Or at least give a convincing illusion of shaping the story. In reality there are only ever a handful of possible outcomes. And this I think is my chief disappointment with Cyberpunk 2077 - It promised ‘unique’ possibilities and outcomes, but after two playthroughs (male nomad and female streetkid) it is the same game.


I agree @Deacon211! Human are drawn to “A Hero’s Journey”. Sandboxing is fine. But it only works long term for those players who write their own story in the sand. I lack the imagination and the suspension of disbelief for that.

Sometimes it’s my own fault. I recently got into Hogwarts. Lovely game with a real story. But it also comes with enough side quests that it can mistaken for open world. My pride led me to taking on every sidequest I walked into and I lost the thread of the story. Now I have zero desire to play. It seems too much like work.


My wife and I play games together a great deal. We’ve had some hits and misses. But one that genuinely got my heart pounding and the feels feeling just lately was one that i actually didnt really like for the first hours of playing it. Nor did the reviewers.

DAYS GONE. Is an open world zombie game. You ride around on a motorbike and try to discover what happened to your wife in the first day of the outbreak.

It starts generic, boring even… then you start noticing the little pieces of love crafted into it and how engaging the main story actually is. The zombies arent a real threat at first. Easy to kill. Easy to trick

Then you meet your first horde and the game became genuinely and completely terrifying. I couldnt put it down.

Another I’ve just started is chernobylite. Too easy to call this a stalker clone, the story is way to well written and unique. The graphics are insanely good and the world is creepy as all hell.
I’m only about 2 hours in but its incredibly well done so far, another story about a missing wife and hunting for clues in the zone of the nuclear disaster. Its spooky without being jump scary. Love it


Interesting thread!

First of all regarding this:

I was reading the manga back in the day of its early print and HOLY HELL that’s a whole lot of mental damage. You can tell that the mangaka (the creator/writer/artist) is a real life Architect. The environment are just mindblowing.

Then the story is absolutely messed up, like really bad. I liked it for a bit then (at least the manga) went off the rail, jumped shark after shark and I was- “Nah, I’m good”

Jerry Seinfeld Reaction GIF

I have no idea what the Netflix version looks like but if you like it I’m really glad. There’s a lot of potential in the story, whether I like it or not.

Second- I know exactly what you mean. I feel the same because just lately I stopped all the Multiplayer/Open World gaming and reinstalled Star Wars Republic Commando and the last two S.T.A.L.K.E.R. games, Clear Sky and Call of Pripyat.

There’s something in the worldbuilding that just gives me a proper sense of belonging and … dunno… purpose? that the Open World games lack severely.

In that sense, despite loving grand scale strategy games I keep re-playing Command & Conquer. Simple missions, obvious gimmicks for each one, cheesy cutscenes with over-acting amateur actors dotted with A-listers… what’s not to love?! Big fun playing, big rewards at the end…

So in this case I can’t wait for S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2 of course but sadly little more. I respect what Bethesda is trying to do but I’ve seen too many of their latest games crash and burn. I will patiently wait before letting the hype run amok. Even if Starfield does look pretty nice.

The real problem is average gamers/mass market users want AAA level production in everything and “Single player campaigns” are the most expensive part of development…


I will play these until I die. No hyperbole. I will always enjoy a round of C&C 1’s campaign. I’m not as taken with the tiberian sun and red alert 1 games but red alert 2 and C&C1 are my jam.

The campaign for 1 is absolutely glorious, a product of its time and super cheesy but ill never forget the first time i played that 1st GDI mission and stormed the beach head before i went to school in the morning. That was a Looooooong day waiting to get home.

Also the 3rd mission where you need to take out the SAM sites and the bloody A10s come and napalm everything. Absolutely astounded. Still am.


Lets Go Reaction GIF by ProBit Global


You REALLY need to try this @komemiute


Oh yeah you did mention it! As soon as I clear a few tasks I need to complete (art to deliver) Imma go through with it! :star_struck:


Its basically the endgame as far as red alert 2 could of been taken to.

Its absolutely insanely difficult as well.


I did like C&C (even though I wasn’t great at those games), but StarCraft 1+2 did that even better IMO.

I sucked at those as well, but the immersion is great.


I enjoyed starcraft but the aesthetic wasn’t my thing. C&C 1 was a plausible if silly take on a realistic warfare scenario. Tanks, planes, infantry. To little me, that was perfect.

When starcraft came along, as well as tiberian sun, the giant robots and aliens never captured me the same way.

I still like them, dont get me wrong, i played Tiberian sun yesterday with my boy. Just that feeling of awesome electricity isn’t there.

Seriously, if i could bottle the way i feel when medium tank rolls out of a war factory the first time you build one.


This whole post could have come out of my fingertips, through my keyboard, word by word.
Maybe less well worded.

Mirrors my feeling exactly, like a clone of myself.


Great replies!

I am also looking forward to Starfield, Sys Shock II, etc. I have great hopes that the story will be compelling yet flexible enough so you don’t “see” the walls hemming you in.

I’ve had the same experiences as most of you with open worlds: awesome, but potentially meandering. I think it’s especially tough when you can break the game by side questing your way to preeminence. I recall maxing out my character (as much as was then possible) in NMS before ever leaving the planet. When I found out that the rest of the planets were functionally the same, it kind of stole my reason to keep playing, though I did for quite awhile.

There were a few suggestions here that I might try as well. Thanks for those as well as a few I missed the first time around.

@komemiute I think the Netflix version of Blame! is probably just a little piece of the overall story. It’s too short to meander too much and I found it enjoyable enough. The thing that really hooked me was the endless post-apocalyptic city stretching into the distance. “So many stories to be told there.” was my thought.

I’ve purchased the first issue of Blame! from Amazon. Hopefully I’ll enjoy it well enough before the narrative goes off the rails.


Do the Darkest Dungeon games fit in the strong story thread? I played a little of the first one and picked up the second one this weekend only to realize that it doesn’t really work on the SteamDeck (controller?).

I’m looking for a good story game to get into as well.

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If you liked games like Baldur’s Gate, Dragon Age, KotOR, Neverwinter Nights or the like:

Once it is finished I think Baldur’s Gate 3 will be a great singleplayer experience as well (I played the Alpha).


Best of luck! The Manga can be a tough nut to crack.

On the other hand you also reminded me that the system shock 1 remake AND system shock 3 are incoming too! :star_struck::sunglasses: