So hey, Cracked’s commander-in-chief David Wong just ran an excellent piece that I thought was relevant enough to share with you all. Hot off the digital presses, This piece examines some of the ways in which games take advantage of their medium to provide a visceral experience unique to games above other narrative forms.

The site does use choice language at points, so a warning if that’s the sort of thing that would put you off.

Here’s a snippet to whet your reading whistle:

There is a part of your brain that you rarely have to use in everyday life, but that your ancestors used all the time: the part that identifies and reacts to monsters. There is a feeling that only comes with seeing a huge, previously unknown predator. Fear, awe, then fight and/or flight.

Horror movies used to try to push this primal button — in the ’50s, they were all about huge monsters (“Radioactivity has made huge maneaters out of these common pubic lice!”). But we’ve become too immune to huge movie monsters over time — that’s why modern horror is less about giant radioactive insects and more about serial killers, and huge movie monsters are the stuff of direct-to-cable Sharktopus cheese. They always look fake, like something that doesn’t really inhabit the same world as the heroes (I’m pretty sure the only reason the Cloverfield ad campaign hid the monster is because of how stupid it looks out in the open).

But video games can still push this button. Not just fear of the predator, but awe. Every gamer can remember the first time some boss character started bursting up out of the ground, or looming in the distance, and just kept getting bigger and bigger on the screen …

Well, what are you waiting for? Go read!

Credit Where It’s Due

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