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Robert Tamayo

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Cut the Cutscenes

There are many video games these days that are entirely composed of cutscenes. The term "cutscene" itself is no longer even a proper term, as there is no "cut" to a "scene", but rather the entire "game" is  a movie and the "cuts" are to "gameplay".

Cut the scenes from the game. If you want to make a movie, make a movie. Just don't call it a game.

But They Tell the Story


There shouldn't be too much of a story in the first place.

But They Build the World


World-building can be handled better by good environment design.

But They Have Cool Action Sequences


All those cool action sequences should be in the parts I can play, not the parts I can't.

What is Right Amount?


The best example I can think of is the original Bioshock. Bioshock handled world-building through the environment. You understand the backstory by just walking around and looking at the destruction around you. You find audio recordings documenting what has happened. And one of the only cutscenes in that game (maybe the only one, I can't remember) was a cutscene for a very good and relevant reason.

Cutscenes cut away from gameplay and break the immersion. Put them into games for very good reasons, nothing less. Otherwise, I will stop calling them cutscenes and call the gameplay sections "cutgames".


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