There are many players who don’t really give a damn about the storyline behind a game and focus only on the gameplay, but to most players the storyline behind the game really happens to matter – if a game’s storyline sucks, then it really takes away from the overall experience: And most players love a game that has a really great, immersive storyline to go along with it. Here are some of the best video game storylines that have ever been created – and why you should play them right now.
Max Payne puts the player right in the shoes of wronged NYPD cop Max Payne who has lost everything except his bullets and keen aim: The story is told in sections and chapters with accompanying comics, and this is more-depth than you will have ever seen in any video game before. Max Payne was the first game to incorporate bullet-time, which is what most people associate with the Matrix series – yes, when Neo is dodging bullets. The success of Max Payne led to the release of a second and third – both of which continue the story arc of Max Payne’s life. And it’s one of the only games that doesn’t screw around with weird power-ups and goes straight to giving the player some painkillers.
Deus Ex was first released in 2000 and was almost immediately hailed as the best game of the year: It’s not hard to see why. The futuristic-themed storyline is set in the year 2052 (which is not that far off now!) and follows JC Denton as he combats a range of forces from his own government to the Triads; the first thing that makes this game extremely damned cool is the huge range of environments to explore – and the huge level of interaction with the environment. There are many games being released nowadays that don’t even come close to the level of interactivity this one gives you. It’s worth a play-through several times.
There are very, very few video games based on movies that actually turned out good – and in the case of The Godfather it turned out really damn well – and might even go towards being a classic. Even if you think you know the storyline already, The Godfather is worth playing through: It has all of the classic scenes of the movie and then some, plus you can customize your character as you go along – the game also included some extra elements, like being able to extort money from businesses to collect cash. It managed to blend great interactivity with a great story, and some expansion on the original for fans.
GTA: San Andreas
Grand Theft Auto is a classic series of games that have caused a fair amount of controversy since its release – and no matter what you think about that, it’s a pretty damn good game. If you’re looking for something really immersive, start off with GTA: San Andreas – it will make perfect sense even if you’ve never played any of the other games in the series before. This one follows CJ, a gangster looking to make it in San Andreas – everyone has a favourite part, a favourite level or a favourite song from the soundtrack. There were even some really cool celebrity cameos part of this one including Andy Dick – just listen to the radio show.
System Shock 2
System Shock 2 (sometimes called System Shock II) was released in 1999 and quickly became a classic of the role-playing and shooter genre – if you’re looking for a survival horror game that requires a bit more thinking over run-and-gun tactics. This was one of the first games to give you several story arc options – and several career options within the game as you battle against an invasion in your own territory as a cybernetically modified soldier. Your skills can be upgraded over time – and you can focus on whichever aspect you want to personally improve. The game also introduced a range of other elements including the ability to research new things and enemies that you encounter in the game to learn more about how to use it. And, of course, the storyline is highly expansive and extremely well thought-out.