If you happen to listen to the SGR Coffee Break, then you know I am addicted to Elite: Dangerous. The addiction runs deep, and I have no intentions of fighting it or trying to rid myself of this disease. Over the weekend, I was chatting with a friend about it and started to realize just why this game is so fun for me.
Elite: Dangerous doesn’t have a story. It doesn’t hold your hand and point you where to go. You get some basic flight tutorials, and then the game releases you into the black and you decide what to do next. You make your own story. You decide how the game will play out during your stay. It is up to you to utilize the mechanics that the developers have put in place. It is this freedom that keeps me hooked.
This isn’t the first game to really do this, however. Minecraft is a game I still play and I still deeply love. It is much the same ordeal as well. You make your own story. You do what you want with the tools provided to you. Heck, even Demon’s Souls/Dark Souls/Dark Souls 2 are fairly open in such a way that you forge your story. Sure, the souls games do have a story, of sorts, but these games allow you to find it. It’s more of a stretch, but that same freedom to roam the virtual world and not be told what needs to be done at a specific point is what really makes that series so mind-numbingly fun for me.
Then we get to today. Here I am, playing the bejesus out of Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate. Like so many games on this list, this game provides me some tools and a world, but it is up to me to make my story. Yeah, it can be a bit grindy to have to constantly go farm for materials, but I still do it and I have a lot of fun while doing it.
I understand that these types of games are not for everyone, yet I am so thankful that they exist. Dare I say, they are probably my favorite genre of games? There is just something about being able to talk to other players and realize everyone has had a different experience, a different story, and a different view of how best to play these games. Hmmm, I think I need to go kill a few monsters to farm some pelts now!