Spend Every Weekend at the Renaissance Faire
Sometimes I feel like a superhero. No, hear me out, really. By day, I’m an excitable clerk at a state legislature, but by night, I’m a gamer. Yes, I admit it. I come home, pull out my video game player, and run Link around the Water temple, trying to remember which water level I need to hit now.
Only a few years ago, gamers hid in basements with their controllers, bonking Mario’s head on every block and avoiding those blasted goombas for the twenty-fourth time. Now, things are changing. Gaming culture is coming out of the basement, and bringing some amazingly creative things with it.
For example, take a look at this: Poland’s CD Projekt RED created an entire interactive launch campaign around their newest game. (Make sure you go to the second page of the article, most of the good stuff is there!) It takes storytelling to the next level, immersing the participants in the world and the story, giving them the chance to actually experience the world personally, not just through a controller.
Wow. How many of us would love to do something like that, especially in a world we love? Take a look at how popular the Wizard World of Harry Potter is, or even Disneyworld itself. Immersing yourself in a story can teach you so much not only about the story but about the world at large.
And, really, how cool is it that people are advertising their game by giving people the chance to actually experience the world before getting into the story itself? I know many people who came to love Harry Potter because of fanfic. I came to love my first fandom because of an online RPG based on it. (Oh, Ansible, how I miss you.)
So, let’s think for a moment. Experiencing story. That’s a theme we can all get behind, right? The gamers got excited about the story through their real life experience in the world and bought the game. We experience the story of Harry Potter and are all excited to go out and change the world. It’s a powerful thing story, and when combined with experience, awesome and amazing things happen. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to go get Link out of the water temple. Where’d that third switch go again?