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Does 'Beyond: Two Souls' Buck Common Trends in Mainstream Visual Media? [Community Quick Read]

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og:image, Beyond Two Souls

Nick had requested my personal opinion about 'Beyond: Two Souls' in the comments of last week's podcast and I thought my response would be more appropriate as a quick read! I came to this conclusion because I think my response could open a dialogue that would be relevant to how mainstream visual media is portrayed today. To me, the aforementioned is going rather flat in regards to telling a story or inspiring the audience to think. But if there was ever a game that made me feel sadness, apprehension, discomfort, concern, excitement, all while being mystified, it was 'Beyond: Two Souls'. Very rarely these days does a movie, or game for that matter, make me think or experience this kind of emotional roller-coaster within me. Typically, they just promote long sessions of thoughtless, open-mouth drool, maybe some short bursts of adrenaline, and a chaotic knee-jerk reaction here or there. I felt that this game drove away from the mundane trend that plagues current media and is truly a masterful work of art, cinema, and storytelling.

In 'Beyond: Two Souls' the story centers on 2 major characters: Jodie and Aiden. Jodie and Aiden's story, although a little disjointed, got me hooked right from the very start. Their story is presented like a complex, 1st and 3rd-person story puzzle, with a mix of quick-time events, some direct control of the characters, and a series of choices that shape the outcome of the game much like any other Quantic Dream game. These choices become essential in solving the overall puzzle of just who these characters really are. It was in figuring out these arms and legs of the story that not only kept me wanting more, but more importantly, made me think about what I was experiencing.

Throughout the story, I had a series of thoughts and was constantly theorizing about what I was seeing: Was Jodie a religious prophet? Was she someone who is gifted? Could she simply have an imaginary friend? Does she see dead people or spirits? Is she is living in another dimension? Or could she just be experiencing paranoid delusions of some kind? I'm still not sure what these characters truly are. But to me, this is perfectly fine because it leaves it open to my own subjective interpretation, re-playability, and more importantly, my own THINKING. Sadly, I feel these thought provoking traits are dying in modern games and movies. This game proved that huge, elaborate set pieces, over the top action, violence, and sexy curves are not essential when telling a great story. Sometimes simple ideas and beautiful motion pictures presented in complex, segmented fragments is all you need. Nevertheless, I personally really enjoyed this game and the story it tells but maybe you would disagree. I’m curious as to what others think about the direction of current visual media or about this game in particular!


This article was submitted by a member of the 4Player community! If you have something you would like to write about and share with the community, feel free to use our Quick Reads Submission form! We are looking for gaming related editorials that are 500 words or less! If selected, your article will be archived on 4PlayerNetwork.com and featured on the front page for 1 week! To submit your own, CLICK HERE.

Comments

  • pioshfd 3 years, 3 months ago

    I've never played a David Cage game but I know some people dislike them for various reasons. Would you say Beyond: Two Souls is the best game that Cage has made?

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    • Nick Henderson 3 years, 3 months ago

      While I haven't played much of Beyond, I will say that I enjoyed Heavy Rain and that is probably the most accessible. Indigo Prophecy and Beyond are really OUT THERE.

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  • hoss3000 3 years, 3 months ago

    That is a good question and right "Indigo Prophecy" and "Beyond: Two Souls" are "really out there" so those are things to consider! I personally preferred the story of "B:TS" over "Heavy Rain" because of it's direction towards the supernatural however, I thought "IP" was a little silly. I'm really looking forward to "Detroit" and that may be a very strong contender when comparing Quantic Dream's library. I mean I'm already coming up with several theories about the characters of "Detroit" based on the various previews QD have released. Just who are these "people" of "Detroit?"

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