Beyond: Two Souls Will Be Focussed On "Meaning", Not "Fun"

Published by George Denison on July 31, 2012

Beyond: Two Souls Will Be Focussed On

Quantic Dream CEO David Cage has said in an interview with Edge that he wants his upcoming game Beyond: Two souls to be "a unique experience."

The outspoken creator of Heavy Rain explained:

My goal is to surprise people, to give them something they want without knowing they want it. I want to create an emotional journey, a unique experience. I am not interested in giving them 'fun', I want to give them meaning; I don't want to challenge their thumbs, I want to challenge their minds.


Promoting a game by saying that it isn't going to be fun might not be the best idea, but I can see what Cage is driving at. He wants to create a videogame experience that isn't shaped around the thrill of challenge, but the immersive qualities of interactive storytelling. In other words, there won't be any high score tables in Beyond: Two Souls.

Which is fine, but Cage's comments suggest that he might fall into the same trap with Beyond as he did with Heavy Rain: the bottomless pit of humourlessness. Much as I liked Heavy Rain, it took itself far too seriously. At least Cage's earlier project Farenheit could count on its own absolute lunacy to raise a few unintended laughs; Heavy Rain was positively morbid in its atmosphere and subject matter. Hopefully Cage's obsession with creating an emotional, thought-provoking experience won't deprive it of a little levity. No-one wants to see all of this acting talent and technological prowess wasted on a glum experience that can't lighten up every once in awhile.

Comments

  • Avatar
    Soulglove
    9 years, 1 month ago

    Good. I want the industry and its games to mature. There needs to be as much mindful experiences as there are mindless. What drives Cage to continue is to create interactive stories that focus on unique experiences for each person. This has been the idea being videogames since the beginning. Developers like Cage and Kojima bring substance to the industry, no matter how over-the-top and thick they may pour it. Some of their audience appreciate their efforts, some don't. You could say that about anything in the industry. It may also just be me, but I don't play games for fun.

  • Avatar
    Zladko
    9 years, 1 month ago

    Sounds a bit pretentious, but I generally agree. A good experience from playing a game isn't limited to fun; if it was then no one would play horror games. It's not fun to be scared shitless and jump at every shadow, it's a completely different experience centred around immersion and adrenaline. While fun certainly is good, a medium's growth and variety shouldn't be held back by it.

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    mydawghatesme
    9 years, 1 month ago

    "No-one wants to see all of this acting talent and technological prowess wasted on a glum experience that can’t lighten up every once in awhile."

    So Heavy Rain wasn't that great because it was too glum? I understand criticizing the game for plotholes, VA or the fuck-you red herring but I don't understand how it being a "glum" game is a bad thing? The story was about a serial killer who drowns children. Of course its going to be fucking glum and depressing. Also, your comment about Fahrenheit is exactly why people didn't like the game. The absolute batshit second half made no sense and ruined the tension and buildup throughout the rest of the game.

    I hope Cage takes a more serious route. He has a really improved engine that looks beautiful and the VA seems fantastic. As long as he cleans up his storytelling I think we could get something really special from this.

  • Avatar
    George Denison
    9 years, 1 month ago

    I think Heavy Rain WAS great. No other game had the balls to linger on mundane interactions like brushing teeth or laying a table and then escalate to more serious interactions like cutting off a finger. I'm not criticising Heavy Rain for being serious.
    I just think that Heavy Rain laid on the grimness a bit too thickly to be taken seriously, if you know what I mean. My pressing concern is that I haven't seen much humour in Cage's work apart from in its excess, and humour is a vital part of any art from, no matter how serious the subject matter.
    Improving videogame storytelling won't come about by it being "more serious." And for the record, I love Farenheit, invisible fluorescent bugs and all.

  • Avatar
    Skittles0520
    9 years, 1 month ago

    The thing is, many of us have different perceptions as to what fun is. I love the tom-foolery in games such as Saint's Row and Gta, and I also loved the serious storyline to Heavy Rain. I respect Quantic Dream for taking the 'serious' route.

  • Avatar
    ex_machina
    9 years, 1 month ago

    Try too hard to contrive an experience and you usually miss the mark.

    Also hate to be this guy but 'focused'. <3

  • Avatar
    Moom
    9 years, 1 month ago

    I like seeing the Modernist and more Classical game ideologies. Just very interesting.

  • Avatar
    jeffytheseaking
    9 years, 1 month ago

    Heavy rain wasn't a game it was an interactive story filled with some good quick time events, a game has game play and things to learn, practice. I think games often try too hard to emulate movies rather than making a good game. As for faulting game with no story or narrative it's just fustrating to see, why can't the narritve just be used to set up events and funny great dialogue. Can't you just like a game for being a game not some pieced together story made by some french guys.

  • Avatar
    jeffytheseaking
    9 years, 1 month ago

    Because there are no systems to learn within the game to learn. Even if the quick time themselves are elaborate challenging, Quick time events are button presses that make the character do something on the screen rather than actually playing the game... we both know this. A story can itself can be made within a game.

  • Avatar
    jeffytheseaking
    9 years, 1 month ago

    "Quick time event are button presses that make the character do something on the screen rather than actually playing the game" What I meant is that you can have game play where you can actually play the game. I'm not resistant to having a story in game. games can have a story can introduce game play into it's own scenarios heavy rain lacked this because of the use of QTE. I'll use Dragon's Dogma as example it may not be the deepest or technical game, but it had mechanics and fun combinations that you could create and had a great combat system made by the devil may cry guys.

  • Avatar
    jeffytheseaking
    9 years, 1 month ago

    Maybe we just think of games differently that's all.

  • Avatar
    Actionreplay
    9 years, 1 month ago

    QUESTION:Is it not possible to have both meaning and fun? To have great game mechanics while also having a meaningful story and world? I think David Cage is excluding that term for no reason because if the gameplay is not there then it might as well not even be a game, but a movie, as FMV games have clearly proven.

  • Avatar
    Shortbus
    9 years, 1 month ago

    I think that sounds great. I don't think enough people's minds are challenged these days, especially now that all of television has gone to "reality TV" style shows. I remember when TLC was actually THE LEARNING CHANNEL and they always had cool science documentaries. I remember when Discovery always had informative and compelling shows and documentaries. Now, TLC and Discovery had 6 straight hours of Swamp People or Duck Dynasty! Sounds pretty interesting doesn't it?

  • Avatar
    Aged Milk
    9 years, 1 month ago

    Personally I want to see Christopher Nolan create a game in the vein of Quantic Dream's interactive= narrative style. So much potential to be had.

  • Avatar
    TheOttomatic91
    9 years, 1 month ago

    I have to agree with Cage here, whilst some people may see this as pessimism it makes since for the style of beyond two souls to take a serious route than a light hearted tone. I certainly don't want a repeat of Fahrenheit/Indigo Prophecy to happen.

  • Avatar
    acicon
    9 years, 1 month ago

    Meaning it's Not going to be Fun?

  • Avatar
    The Mighty Rubber Ducky
    9 years, 1 month ago

    Forgive me, Quantic Dream fans, but I will not buy a game that we have been told by the creator himself will not be fun. If you buy this game, it is like asking a waiter to give you food you think is "Ok" at a 5 star restaurant. I mean, Atari went off because they believed in brand loyalty and all of that stuff, and only some people would enjoy something that isn't supposed to be fun, so I don't assume too many people will be buying Beyond as it is, even less after this announcement.