#1 Edited by I_smell (3925 posts) -

I was just thinking about stories in games and I decided you can't make a videogame about Breaking Bad. Like first off who do you play as? You can't PLAY AS Walter because he's supposed to be an independant character who makes his own decisions- then I thought about the whole massive journey of getting cancer.
Getting cancer can't be something you PLAY AS in a game, cos it's mostly an emotional thought process, and most stories about that are just how the character's attitude changes, and the scary minefield of thinking they go through. It's not an interactive-medium kind of thing, and there's no good way a game can do anything with it... Unless it was some completely abstracted indie game.
 
and now I'm just wondering if a game's ever even mentioned cancer. I can KIND OF picture Persona trying it? ...maybe The Sims could try it... not really. Just throwin a net out there!

#2 Posted by BiffMcBlumpkin (3720 posts) -

Luigi got colorectal cancer in Mario 64.

#3 Posted by Demoskinos (14520 posts) -

@I_smell: Yep. Naomi Hunter from metal gear. You find out that the only thing keeping her alive is nanomachines and then she lets herself die near the end of MGS4.

#4 Posted by Athadam (673 posts) -

I think of cancer in media to be portrayed as a sort of terminal disease. In that sense, I think quite a few video games have characters with terminal diseases - just replace the name of said disease with cancer and the results are still somewhat the same.

#5 Posted by yoshisaur (2607 posts) -

I honestly don't see why a game would even "try" imagining itself as a cancer patient. The sheer lack of emotional qualities that would be created would offend not only those with cancer, but people sensitive to the subject. Think of how soldiers (sometimes) are pissed about people believing Call of Duty is how "war is." Now just exponentially explode that idea into a quad-drillion and you will have the upset of a cancer playing character that is the focus of the attention.

#6 Posted by Dagbiker (6939 posts) -

the Fallout series had a lot of instances of cancer, while I do not remember them implectly calling it cancer.

#7 Posted by PillClinton (3290 posts) -

Zach got cancer.

That's why his hair turned white.

I'm a medical professional.

#8 Posted by Itwastuesday (924 posts) -

I don't see the problem if you want to use cancer as a plot device. I don't even think of it as a subject that has to be tip-toed around, really. Anyone who says otherwise is way too easily offended or trying too hard to not offend anyone.

#9 Posted by Nightriff (4866 posts) -

@Demoskinos said:

@I_smell: Yep. Naomi Hunter from metal gear. You find out that the only thing keeping her alive is nanomachines and then she lets herself die near the end of MGS4.

Boom, my example

#10 Posted by yoshisaur (2607 posts) -

@Itwastuesday said:

I don't see the problem if you want to use cancer as a plot device. I don't even think of it as a subject that has to be tip-toed around, really. Anyone who says otherwise is way too easily offended or trying too hard to not offend anyone.

I can see how you would see it that way, but I think it's more that cancer would have to be handled really well or it could fall flat on it's face. If the developer makes "light" of cancer in the slightest way, or just makes it feel like another "hunger meter" tacked on, it could offend those who feel it was handled too sloppily.

I know that if I played a game where "cancer" was simply something you had to take an injection every 20 minutes (in-game) to stave off it's "effects," I know I'd be pretty offended that they took such a [serious] type of plot device in such a bla·sé way.

#11 Edited by Itwastuesday (924 posts) -

@ck1nd: I see what you mean. If a developer tried to tackle the idea of cancer as a gameplay mechanic and ended up putting fat cancer meters on the screen, that would be a (hilarious) mess.

Unless, of course, we're talking about Trauma Center because Trauma Center was dope!

#12 Edited by BiffMcBlumpkin (3720 posts) -

@ck1nd said:

If the developer makes "light" of cancer in the slightest way

The bizarre way you put "light" in quotes there makes it seem like part of some scheme to turn cancer into light.

If you think I'm going to sit here and let you do whatever the Hell you want with quotation marks you are out of your fucking mind.

#13 Posted by I_smell (3925 posts) -
@Itwastuesday: @ck1nd: Even if they did it with a side-character it'd be pretty weird in most games. It could only MAYBE work in a social relationship focused game like Catherine or ... ... ... another one...
#14 Posted by ShinjiEx (624 posts) -

COD MW2 gave me cancer :(

#15 Posted by Ravenlight (8040 posts) -

@BiffMcBlumpkin said:

The bizarre way you put "light" in quotes there makes it seem like part of some scheme to turn cancer into light.

If you think I'm going to sit here and let you do whatever the Hell you want with quotation marks you are out of your fucking mind.

Followed for advocating punctuation accuracy.

#16 Posted by el_stork (64 posts) -

@BiffMcBlumpkin: Good man/woman!

#17 Posted by Demoskinos (14520 posts) -

Also didn't James' wife have cancer in Silent Hill 2? I know she was "sick" that is why he suffocated and killed her because he didn't want her to suffer anymore.

#18 Edited by AmatureIdiot (1062 posts) -

Deadpool has cancer, I think.

Edit. Though I guess this misses the point, being originally a comic book guy and not really cancer as OP implies.

#19 Posted by BBAlpert (1354 posts) -

This has been proposed a number of years ago. Well, sort of proposed. "Challenged," really (it starts at 1:13).

#20 Posted by Rotnac (594 posts) -
#21 Posted by TrafalgarLaw (1026 posts) -

@I_smell said:

Getting cancer can't be something you PLAY AS in a game, cos it's mostly an emotional thought process,

Cancer is as much of a physical ailment as it can be an emotional one. Being diagnosed with cancer isn't a always inmediate death sentence, some cancers are very treatable nowadays. Untreated cancer is ultimately lethal. My point is, there are a lot of different types of cancer and how everyone experiences cancer (physically and emotionally) can differ from person to person even if there is common ground of having to deal with cancer. I can see why cancer could be something to touch upon in games but could also be very dangereous.

There was once a celebrity diagnosed with breast cancer. She got cured (remission) from it and told the media that the reason she beat cancer was because she was strong and determined in battling. She got a lot of flak for it, with people that also suffered from breast cancer saying ;"So the people that died from breast cancer were weak? They were not determined enough?" You gotta pick your words carefully and I think only the people that either survived or still deal with cancer or had close relatives/friends that were diagnosed with cancer, are able to do tread upon cancer in videogames. Who knows, I might write a story about cancer myself if I ever get to work in the field of cancer.

#22 Posted by I_smell (3925 posts) -
#23 Posted by Nottle (1912 posts) -

@Nightriff said:

@Demoskinos said:

@I_smell: Yep. Naomi Hunter from metal gear. You find out that the only thing keeping her alive is nanomachines and then she lets herself die near the end of MGS4.

Boom, my example

Could The Boss also count? I recall her talking about how when she was in space it was before shuttles could be shielded from solar radiation. She mentions that she showed interest in Snake because he was also a nuclear test subject. They never say she has cancer or anything but Snake and the Boss have been irradiated, no matter what they won't die of old age.

#24 Posted by Coafi (1481 posts) -

@Demoskinos said:

Also didn't James' wife have cancer in Silent Hill 2? I know she was "sick" that is why he suffocated and killed her because he didn't want her to suffer anymore.

Crap, I was just going to post this. But, yeah... it is never stated what Mary had, since James just says "she died from that damn disease". I think we can safely assume it was some type of cancer. Btw, that is kind of a major spoiler, for those who don't know about it.

#25 Posted by Serpentenema (216 posts) -

@BBAlpert said:

This has been proposed a number of years ago. Well, sort of proposed. "Challenged," really (it starts at 1:13).

This is one of my favorite videos

#26 Posted by BraveToaster (12590 posts) -

I think that video games have the potential of using real ailments while maintaining taste. I don't think illnesses should be shied away from in games, and there are titles that mange to evoke emotion in gamers.