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You Should Try Failing More Often, Detective Phelps

Why the impulse to always "get it right" is ultimately less interesting.

Could I have avoided this somehow, Zach?

Chasing a fleeing, desperate man across a falling construction set, it dawns upon me:

"I've fucked up."

Virtual heart racing from sprinting, I'm relentlessly tracking down a man that I've, up until this moment, deduced was guilty of a horrifying crime. He killed someone.

He didn't, though. And as I catch up to him, it's clear there are no more locations to visit, no more suspects to talk to, no more pieces of evidence to string along. The end of the road is in sight. While I (the player) know I've bungled the case, I know the suspect's innocent, and there were five questions that I shouldawouldacould answered better if I'd thought about the whole thing longer, my evidence points to him.

Someone has to take the fall, right?

Someone's got to pay, even if that someone isn't actually the right one, so the papers and the bosses and the neighborhood (does the list ever ever end?) are happy, and as the case draws to a close and I'm assigned my two-star rating, all I can feel is bitter disappointment. It's not the kind of controller chucking misery you get from screwing up a boss battle for the upteenth time, but a real "aw, shucks" realization that I've done a truly bad thing and it just felt wrong.

More games should let you fail. It's less rewarding to be right every time; it's not how life is.

In L.A. Noire, failures are still "succeses." The case is "solved." You might curse the sometimes frustrating adventure game logic driving the interrogations, but I can't help but thumbs up experiences where the fail state isn't just a game over screen. It's why seeing the "you got caught" message during the stealth sections feels so out of place. The rest of the game goes so explicitly out of its way to push players into gray areas, while the action remains black and white.

I twitch every time someone on my Twitter feed curses that they've been awarded less than five stars on a case in L.A. Noire and begin the case from scratch. Give failure a chance, ya'll.

Believe me, I understand the impulse--I have it, too. What's powerful is saying no to it and seeing how you respond. As gamers, we've been trained to achieve perfection, whether it's navigating a sea of bullets or collecting some hidden items. We don't like second place, especially if it's preventable. That's boring. Why should it always go your way? We're constantly asking developers to create more emotional gaming experiences, and though I can't say the same for you, but my personal failures burn more than my successes. They're what drive me to be better.

I'm reminded of the spit-take reaction to Aeris in Final Fantasy VII. I'm convinced the developers wouldn't kill her if they made the game today; they'd have made resurrecting her some achievement, otherwise it would tick too many people off. I want to get pissed off, feel sad, experience regret and engage deeper than the latest macho power fantasy (which I like, too!).

Want to play something moving? Try Jordan Magnuson's The Killer. I want that on a large scale.

There was a similar moment in Grand Theft Auto IV that I wrote about, too, in a post titled "My Conscience, And How ‘Grand Theft Auto IV’ Made Me Feel Regret." I talked about when you're asked to kill Playboy X or Dwayne. Letting Playboy X live presents a cooler gameplay path, with the possibility to grab a larger apartment, while Dwayne, recently released from prison and seeking redemption, offers me nothing as a player, besides toying with my virtual compassion.

I killed Dwayne. Here's how I reacted back in 2008:

"It felt wrong, though. In my gut, I was killing someone with a second chance. Dwayne served his time. But in a dog-eat-dog virtual world, it was about me. Except it wasn’t. It was about me, the player. When Playboy X called me up after the deed was done and denounced our relationship — calling me 'cold' — he was right. There was a knot in my stomach over this. I made the wrong decision. It was too late; the auto save function had kicked in. Dwayne’s fate was signed, sealed, delivered. I have to live with that decision for the rest of the game."

If I could have done that moment over, reloaded a previous save, I might have. How tragic.

I want more moments like that, please. Don't you?

Patrick Klepek on Google+
206 Comments
Posted by BaconGames

For nothing is more frustrating than arbitrarily punishing the player for failing a task with a shitty redo system or checkpoint system.  So the smoother the experience in that regard, the better.
 
I feel like Patrick raises the point and supplements nicely with the GTAIV conundrum (which I feel is crazy inferior to the Kate McReary vs. Roman decision later in the game) but it doesn't address the heart of issue.  Why does LA Noire give you a gamey rating in the first place?  Wouldn't it heighten that sense of grayness if you never really know if you that was the guy.  I feel like the player should more or less know if the perp is guilty or not but ultimately the story could benefit from not telling you at all how well you did.  It's just part of the story and roll with it.  
 
However the success/failure notes during interrogation do point toward an ideal that the game and the player both assumes: that you get the right guy and ask the right questions.  It's obvious in retrospect that the game models itself around success and not getting it is considered failure.  However the admirable thing is it doesn't just throw you under the bus if you do fail even if the player might do that themselves.  If I feel off or I'm truly botching an interview, I'll probably load up and resume the case from my last autosave.  However if I feel like I did what I felt was right and it was still wrong, then so bet it.  I think that's the attitude gamers should take.

Posted by mfpantst
@gladspooky: Ok I see, I think.  Though I'm not trying to say that you are actually saying it's not a game.  I'm trying to say you're a little shallow for getting into too small a box on what 'video game aspects' are.  And I'm saying this game is trying to shake your built in video game conceptions.  And I'm saying I'm surprised people who play video games are so set in their ways- especially since we tend to be a younger, edgier crowd.  I'd think eclecticism would be welcome.
Posted by Afroman269

Except if playboy x dies, Dwayne is still a negative Nancy that probably will end up hanging himself someday.

Posted by needforswede

I agree with you completely, and I remembered killing Playboy X instead because he just pissed me off and I didn't think he deserved to live more than Dwayne did.  But Dwayne was the least fun person to hang out with, all he did was complain about how much his life sucked, I get enough of that from my real life friends, but still, I felt sorry for him and couldn't bring myself to kill him.
 
Failure should be an option in videogames, that's one thing great about L.A. Noire, what's not great about it is how damn short the game was.

Posted by Aetheldod
@Oni said:
@Sharkington said:
And there's nothing satisfying about failing in L.A. Noire, because the game doesn't even acknowledge it in any meaningful way. Total and utter failure in one case has absolutely no bearing on any subsequent case. It's never even mentioned again. Nothing has any effect on anything to come. Heavy Rain is a game that does that kind of thing right, and I say that as someone that really doesn't like Heavy Rain at all.
I agree with this, but the kicker for me is that 'success' is equally unimportant in LA Noire. You can get 5 stars and still convict the wrong guy in every Homicide case because that's simply what the overarching story dictates. Success or failure, it doesn't make a damn bit of difference in LA Noire, and that's what really bums me out about that game.
This is what puzzles me , people keep saying this is a good game , but it is not in my book , I mean you could ace all those homicides but you know that at the end it doesn't matter , so what was the purpose? You could figure out who is the killer early on but noooo the game doesn't allow it (I mean its fucking obvious by the second case) 
 
Thats is why I don't sing praises for this game , and yes it was fucking boring to play as well ( and I like adventures games so all those who think that I wanted a GTA 47 eff off ) . I didn't liked  much Heavy Rain , but more due to a very lame out of the hat story thing , but I had a lot of fun in that game or at least they did played out its decision the right way .... stick it to end no matter what , LA Noir didn't. So all Im saying I won't give a pass to LA Noir even if their intention were cool , the execution was poor , and with better games out there why praise mediocrity?
Posted by ahoodedfigure

The failure mechanic caught my attention in this one, because you could "succeed" in a game sense by passing the case, and still fail ethically or procedurally.  I wonder how it would feel if there was no star rating, but actual consequences later on, at least in the papers or on the street.

Posted by vhold

It's interesting how some people are saying there's no consequence for failure and that robs it of meaning.  It shows a philosophical difference between players.  For some people, the failure itself is the meaning, there doesn't have to be some arbitrary cue later to remind you that you failed, and if there isn't a cue, it still doesn't change the fact that you failed.

Posted by Vodun

The problem is that the way the game is presented does everything to initiate completionist drive. You get immediate feedback that your reaction in an interrogation was the wrong one, and after each case there is an utterly digital rating to how you performed according to the game's strict rules. 
 
If they'd actually gone the whole way and removed all form of interface this game would have been much more interesting. But of course, then you can't have achievements...and the kids love those!

Posted by Elyk247

Play a game the way you want to. That's all there is to it.

Posted by bricewgilbert

My issues seem to go much deeper. I actually like making mistakes and having it matter. I just don't think they matter in LA Noir. Nor do I think the mistakes I make are actually mistakes on my part. They seem to be issues with (as you said) adventure game logic and poor just plain poor design. The Golden Butterfly case to me is a perfect example of awesome ideas ruined by the game forcing me down specific paths while I as a thinking person know exactly what the game is trying to do.

Posted by Milkman
@Edin8999 said:
@sixghost said:
@gladspooky said:
I'd rather play a video game.
Enjoy your call of duty
''ENJOY YOUR CALL OF DUTY ''      '' look at me guys i played la noire and i feel like a better person then all those cod fanboys because i enjoyed this game hihih''  There is a reason that call of duty keeps selling millions. This game is just fucking boring.
No, it's not. 
Edited by Babylonian

I had a pretty interesting experience just now with The Killer: in my desire to escape the dark, dire situation the game thrust me into, I decided I'd try everything I can with the limited set of controls they'd given me: the spacebar.  
 
So I tried everything, up to and including rapidly smashing the spacebar, and to my surprise, I realized I could take tiny, individual footsteps that way and, in certain conditions (in particular, when the figure in front of you is walking at full-speed), you can actually walk past and, eventually, in front of the person you're death-marching.  
 
My goal then became to try and get so far ahead of the stick figure that they were no longer on screen. That became my new win condition: if the person slipped off screen, and I didn't see them walking anymore, I considered them 'escaped', in which case, I DID IT! I BEAT "THE KILLER!" 
 
I got super close to it once, but when my spacebar-mashing let up for a half-second, the Cambodian caught up and started walking in front of me again. DAMN IT. 
 
So yeah, I did give up eventually, and wound up just marching forward to the normal ending. And this obviously is just a dumb glitch and wasn't intentionally added by Magnuson. But still. Kinda worth thinking about? I guess? #videogames

Posted by phantomzxro

First I would like to say great write up patrick and  i have to agree with what others have said that there no benefits good or bad to failing other then the game under handedly telling you that you suck at this game. i'm still playing the game for the most part without trying to perfect everything. But i just think the game needs a better system for all that stuff.  Give me more of a rocky road of i'm failing don't just move the story along like it's butter.
Posted by Gerhabio

News? Play how you want :)

Posted by emtee

I agree completely with the idea that more games need to make failure something other than "game over." The Playboy X/Dwayne example is a good one. I can't remember feeling bad about killing Dwayne, but just the fact that it was a choice and not something that would end my game if I made it incorrectly is what made it more exciting. 
 
In Heavy Rain I did a similar thing. I tried to play the game as David Cage intended, where I wouldn't quick load if I made any "mistakes." The only thing I really regretted doing in that game was killing the drug dealer. It looked like he was going for a gun, so I shot him. When I later realized that wasn't the case, I felt really bad about what I had done. There was another choice in that game that was really hard to make, but after I made it I was happy that I was given the choice to handle it however I liked. 
 
Same with Mass Effect 2. I played through that game the first time, and decided that whatever happened, happened. I lost half my team in the final mission because of stupid mistakes I made, but I didn't re-load a previous save. I let the game play out as I had set it up to be, and definitely had that rewarding feeling that made me glad I did. Of course the next time I played through, I did everything I could to get everyone out alive, though.

Posted by astonish

Great story and something I have thought about for another reason: achievements. Achievements have really made me see a lot of games through rose coloured glasses. I played Bioshock the way I did in order to get more points, I turn down difficulties in some racing games to get first on every race, I spend time OCD'ing over collectables than I do getting sucked into the world.  My real world desire for virtual points leaves me missing the best parts of gaming: the escapism, the just-for-kicks antics, the role playing....
 
I just finished the tutorial part of LA Noire, and I think, for once, I'm just going to play the game. No turning back, no worrying about achievements, just enjoy the story as it unfolds for me naturally.

Posted by Artie

Here's my problem: 
 
Failing in LA Noire. Okay, sure. 
 
Failing in LA Noire when I KNOW who I WANT to convict and the game WON'T LET ME, is infuriating. 
 
That man you chased in the falling construction site? Guess what? He's the only conclusion to the case, there's no other option. You didn't "fuck up" because you made a bad choice, its because the game forces you down poor decisions.

Edited by Olivaw

I agree that video games should have consequences for actions beyond "GAME OVER" and I agree that LA Noire accomplishes this.
 
But I wonder whether most people who play video games are ready to be challenged by experiencing emotions other than triumph or frustration when playing a game.
 
Obviously, not everyone goes to movies to feel super positive the whole time, but the greatest strength of games is their interactivity, and putting the player in control of something they don't enjoy is asking a lot of the player. Hell, Pathologic is game that I'd regard as being a work of art, yet part of the reason why is because it's incredibly unpleasant to play and you have to make a ton of awful decisions that might not necessarily lead you to what passes for victory in that game.
 
I don't know that we're ready for that yet.

Posted by JakeLogan
@Minish_Driveby said:
Heavy Rain is a good example of this. There's no way to mess up the game, but some of your actions make you think you did the wrong thing.

Second that motion - I'd like to have decisions, both "right" and "wrong" have a siginificant impact on the way you play and how the story pans out. 
 
Heavy Rain took a big step in the right direction.  I'd like to see the momentum gather behind it and L.A. Noire. 
 
On a side note, I shot Playboy X in the face in some dank back alley.  Dwayne needed that second chance - Playboy had squandered his.
Posted by Anderson

Perhaps it was a mistake was to assign a star rating to each case? Or maybe they should have made it an option up front to turn the rating off for your play-through?  Many people have this compulsion to get five stars for no other reason than the satisfaction of the feat itself.

Posted by RJPelonia

Awesome, awesome article. Couldn't agree more with you, Patrick.

Posted by whatisdelicious

So far, my problem with L.A. Noire is that "frustrating adventure game logic." I've restarted almost every case so far because it's so vague what it really means in an interview to choose one of the three responses. Sometimes I feel like I've got hard evidence to prove that that person is totally lying, and I select it, and the game tells me that there's no relation there and drops it. Sometimes I can tell they're lying, but none of the evidence has a hard enough relation for me to want to accuse them of something outright, so i just hit "Doubt," and the game tells me I'm wrong there too. 
 
Failing in L.A. Noire so far hasn't been fun. I don't mean "fun" in the "happy" sense, but in the "engaging" sense. So far it's just been frustrating, always leaving me feeling like the game miscommunicated something to me, that it wasn't my fault. I've felt several times the gut reaction of "well how was I supposed to know that?" 
 
L.A. Noire is good and fun when things are going right. When you call somebody out for lying and can point out precisely the evidence that proves it. When you believe someone and hit "Truth" and you were right. When your hard work and careful thought pays off and someone bad goes to jail. But the second a flaw pops up, it gets really frustrating, really quickly.

Posted by Chaos_Bladez

This is an awesome article Patrick. Almost as cool as your hair. :)
 
I don't mind well-designed failure, but I think LA Noire doesn't do it correct enough.
I felt cheated on a few convictions that I can't spoil here.

Posted by xyzygy

Not to mention that if you save Playboy X, THE GAME DOESN'T GLITCH UP AND REFUSE TO LET DWAYNE BE ONE OF YOUR FRIENDS FOR THAT DAMN ACHIEVEMENT!!!
 
GAH

Posted by Adziboy

Great article and I agree with everything. Have you played Heavy Rain, Patrick? That's a game which really pulls on the emotions and really makes you think. Without giving anything away for people: there was a part where you had to do a sort of challenge to reach where you needed to go, and I failed. The game basically said, "you cant do this bit, you have to walk away, its not game over, and there WILL be consequences". I walked away and as the game progresses you see what happened if you had completed it, or vice versa, not completed it. 
 
Fantastic game.

Posted by Fire_Of_The_Wind

Have you played The Witcher 2?

Posted by matthewrex

Great article. Great.

Posted by Wrighteous86

This is the kind of editorial content I used to love on Giant Bomb. Hopefully we'll see more of it and the other guys will return to it a bit more in the future.

Posted by Brackynews
@xyzygy said:
Not to mention that if you save Playboy X, THE GAME DOESN'T GLITCH UP AND REFUSE TO LET DWAYNE BE ONE OF YOUR FRIENDS FOR THAT DAMN ACHIEVEMENT!!! GAH
This morality is relevant to my interests.
 
Anyway, I love how LA Noire and Heavy Rain share the same systems of failure and redemption. The special sauce David Cage instills in his games is your decisions truly do impact the branches toward the ending you experience. I can replay missions immediately after finishing them in both games, but I know the next plotline in LA Noire won't really change when I go back to it. What I do like about it is Phelps can have a crummy day at the office and still comes back to work the next day. I restarted one mission on the traffic desk and have been playing the rest without rewinding for good or ill. It's way more fun to fail "honestly" and do better next time, than it is to see what happens by deliberately failing it.
 
I'm not sure that Aeris callback entirely fits. Square and Rockstar both have proven across multiple games that they will let characters die and stay dead, and I'm sure they will continue to do so. I don't think we'll ever see another reaction like with Aeris, but that game was that game, y'know? They won't recapture that.
Posted by AhmadMetallic

I agree with you Patrick, but what if someone is too insecure/obsessive to let a game not go the way he wants it to ? 
 
it's a hard conversion, turning into someone who'd accept failure for the greater good.

Posted by Napalm
@Artie said:
Here's my problem:  Failing in LA Noire. Okay, sure.  Failing in LA Noire when I KNOW who I WANT to convict and the game WON'T LET ME, is infuriating.  That man you chased in the falling construction site? Guess what? He's the only conclusion to the case, there's no other option. You didn't "fuck up" because you made a bad choice, its because the game forces you down poor decisions.
Great article, but this example is clear proof why L.A. Noire is not a good example of this. Pigeon-holing a player to fail when there is a clear cut answer and reasoning for it not to happen is worse than a "game over" screen. 
 
I nod to everybody bringing up Heavy Rain.
Posted by gbrading

You know which game did player choice excellently? Deus Ex. It let you chose which side you were on, and there was no "wrong" way to go about it. "Failing" a case in L.A. Noire should really be more like simply arriving at a different conclusion. Afterall, that's what real policework is like.

Posted by haggis

After a few cases, you know what the game reminded me of? A short-lived Fox drama, "Justice." It was a typical procedural, following defense lawyers this time. The twist was that at the end, they tell you what really happened, and the kicker was that sometimes the good guy lawyers you root for actually get it wrong. Yes, the good guys sometimes get murderers off scot-free. Now, that didn't prove too popular, and the show was cancelled. But I liked the idea. And I liked that feeling at the end of the case where I thought I'd gotten something right, and then ... three stars. Maybe I didn't get it right after all. Maybe I'd missed something. And you know what? That's the way things are in real life. Not that much of this game is realistic in that same way, but I felt it was occasionally a bit more compelling than the traditional heroic ending.
 
The game lacks the kind of depth that would make this a really profound experience, but it was definitely neat, and different.
 
Typically, a failed case results in a true, hard failure in this sort of game. Some complaints I've seen on these forums consist of complaining that the game doesn't force you to get everything right, to solve it the "correct" way. I rather wish they'd gone a bit further in the opposite direction. Now, the game has quite a few cases where you get things wrong. I'd have preferred it if the game let me go back to older crime scenes and investigate further when it became clear that I was getting something wrong. Offer more overlap. In any case, this game was definitely a step in the right direction toward allowing more dynamic concepts of failure and success. If Team Bondi can take it further a few steps ... that'd be an amazing game.

Edited by HerbieBug

While I agree that LA Noire's willingness to let you bungle the interviews as much as you'd like is a good thing, the core system behind those questions is not fleshed out enough to allow for as immersive experience with it as I'd like.  Some of the questions and answers are written in such a way where the Truth/Lie/Doubt scheme is too simple an interface to get across the player's interpretation of the exchange.  Meaning, sometimes 'Doubt' results in Phelps saying something completely unintended by the player when they chose that option, the word-for-word response of the POI was actually true but also a lie of omission.  Lies of omission frequently get classified as either Truth or Doubt seemingly at random.   
 
There are problems with the interface exacerbated by some dodgy writing on the questions.  I would like it better if the game more strongly reinforced paying attention to the exchanges and responding with a more flexible input system, such that if you know what's going on and you have all evidence required, you should be able to get every question right without being screwed over by a poorly written question.   Note that I think they got the 'Lie' questions right.  It's the ambiguity between truth and doubt where the game can sometimes fall apart.   Putting such emphasis on scoring with the questions is also a contributing issue. 

Edited by DonPixel

Agree, good writting!  Let's give Fail a chance.

Posted by HerbieBug
@Zero_Dude said:
The kind of sour feeling I enjoy is Johnson's moment in Halo 3, or the end of GTA IV. It's that sour moment that I can live with that either provides motivation for a future event, or provides a sort of closure, a revelation of some sort. Some of the cases in here left me much more dissatisfied than that, and I despised entire parts of my game experience as a result. Again I'm not looking for 5-star perfection, but the one time I got the wrong guy, I never wanted to play that game again. I could never accept fucking up THAT bad, and I certainly couldn't accept not trying to fix it, or at least say sorry to the guy. And oh, all the times I screwed something up because I was trying to ask a certain question in a particular manner that was never offered in the truth, lie, doubt choices. At times, I didn't feel responsible for what happened, but I was blamed for it because I was only given 3 choices among the many variables reality offered. I had trouble getting immersed in the world cause I kept feeling restrained by all the mechanics in the game. I'd live with my decisions more if they truly felt like my decisions.
agreed.
Posted by SgtGrumbles
@Vodun said:
The problem is that the way the game is presented does everything to initiate completionist drive. You get immediate feedback that your reaction in an interrogation was the wrong one, and after each case there is an utterly digital rating to how you performed according to the game's strict rules.  If they'd actually gone the whole way and removed all form of interface this game would have been much more interesting. But of course, then you can't have achievements...and the kids love those!
Came here to post this. If you didn't know how you were doing and were as aware as Phelps the whole time it would boost the experience, I still loved it but I sometimes wish it hadn't shown me what I was doing so often.
Posted by Cheapoz

I had a similar experience in ME2. 
 
Before you start the last mission I knew those ship upgrades were for something, but I neglected them the whole time. As the cut scene started playing and my crew died one after another I knew I screwed it up. When Tali got bit, I ran and turned off the console. 
 
But I didn't feel right about it. 
  
Later in that mission when Kelly died I was super upset about it as well, but instead of trying to right that wrong, I decided that I had to deal with it. That was a very real outcome that I could have avoided but screwed around too much before hand to do so. 
 
I learned to live with the outcome of my actions, because doing the wrong thing made me feel bad, but turning off the console to try and be 'perfect' felt worse.

Posted by Marz

Yes a game that presents choices should have consequences.  LA Noire gave me no such consequences during the story which pretty much devalued it's  re-playability tenfold.  

Posted by dropabombonit

Have to agree, I never quit out and reloaded a save in L.A noire because you said we as gamers need to get over doing things perfect 

Edited by HerbieBug

Here is one instance of dodgy writing and poor design with the truth/lie/doubt system that I noted on first playthrough- quit/loaded to test all options:
 
very minor spoilers ahead

Interview with Mr. Rasic of InstaHeat.

question (paraphrased)
Phelps: your service employees are all licensed and accredited, correct?

answer (paraphrased)
Yes. *shifty eyes*

In your evidence all you have at this point is the names of two InstaHeat servicemen. Nothing about them, only the names. It seems logical to me that since you can't prove anything about these guys, the answer to this response should be 'Doubt', due to the shifty eyes. However, what you don't know is that Phelps is bluffing here and you the player are not in on it.

The correct response is 'Lie'

Only after you click on 'Lie' will the conversation work itself around to Mr. Rasic asking you if you can prove his guys are shady. Again, you can't, but Phelps is bluffing. The correct selection is to pick either guy and see how Mr. Rasic responds. So what the game is asking you to do here is take a flyer on a lie accusation with no proof, before you know that Phelps is pushing for a confession prodded out by a bluff.
 
Note that the game will not give you the option to call R&I to background check these employees until after this interview has concluded. 

Posted by VetleNM

The rating system is terrible in this game, but the worst offender for me is the little jingle that plays after you answer a question right or wrong. I think the game would be a lot more suspenseful and frankly a whole lot better if you had to judge the suspects' reactions yourself. It would also make it a whole lot easier to live with the consequences of choosing the "wrong" answer. Here's hoping for a hardcore mode or something like that in L.A. Noire 2.

Online
Edited by HerbieBug

Yeah, I'd be okay with that.  I kind of get the impression that the scoring system was added late in development on response from testers indicating frustration after failing cases (low star rating) and not knowing where they went wrong. 

Posted by MrCellophane
@Bib said:
I like when story-driven games let you fail and still continue playing. One of the coolest things about Heavy Rain, too.
Amen to that. Know of any more beside Heavy Rain and LA Noire? I know True Crime: Streets of LA, but there you had a choice of whether to replay a mission so that doesn't really count.
Also, amazing article
Posted by BBQBram
@gladspooky said:
I'd rather play a video game.
Look kids, he's reinforcing his own preconceptions of a medium's limitations as fact! Self-fulfilling prophecy! Video game stories and characters will be flat forever! Thank you, Captain Retard!
Posted by TheNoOne

I like the failure, but i would like to know the failure at the end of the case. Being let known that i got a question wrong there and then made me feel like shit. Yeh, that's what they're trying to do, but i would like to have had it been handed to me on a plate via a more meaningful way, just a cutscene or a extra line, not a 'Wah wah'. Then while running after a character, I realise myself, and its too near the end of the case to re-do my action. I would like more 'Oh Shit, What did i do?' moments.  
Just finding out you failed at the end would have been more key for me. A bigger kick to the balls.

Posted by sirchode

I can relate to this article, and even specifically about GTA IV. And since Patrick copy/pasted from his blog, I will too!
 
"As I think about [the choices the game presented], my mind is being flooded and surrounded by cliches, predominantly things like "you actually care about the characters." As much as I want to resist saying something like that, I don't know that I can; I really did care. When it came time to kill Playboy X or Dwayne, kill Gerry or Francis, kill Darko or let him live, I paused the game and thought about it. These weren't just arbitrary characters, I had been shown enough of their personality and gotten to know them just enough to make it a tough decision. I didn't like Playboy X very much since he just seemed fake, so killing him was a relatively easy choice. I also didn't like Francis since he was so corrupt and just unlikable all around, so again that wasn't particularly tough. The real hard choice was Darko, here was the person Niko had been looking for throughout the entire game, messed up on drugs and barely alive, he killed all of Niko's friends for $1000 and yet he managed to sting me right to my core by saying "How much do YOU charge?"

I still don't know exactly why I killed him. I figured it would give me some closure, give me what I'd been looking for, and the fact that he was probably going to die on the streets made me think I was almost doing him a favor. But as soon as I walked away and Niko started talking about how empty he feels and how that didn't bring any kind of closure at all... I felt genuine regret. Not just "Aw now I don't have the perfect gaming experience" but it was like I had actually made a decision that had a real impact, as if it reflected on me as a person. That's something I've never experienced in a game."
 
Rockstar kind of knows what they're doing.

Posted by rjayb89

I was born to win, Patrick. Like Norm.

Posted by Xpgamer7

I guess I want more moments like that but those need to be specified games. Those games are more cinematic and/or make you feel emotion. They're not as traditional games and I want them, but I want to keep my old games too.

Posted by theguy

I played The Killer.... wow