Okay so for today I am going to write two articles/blog posts. (It would help a lot my keyboard would work properly...) One on the basic definition of an Adventure Game and the second on the brief history on the genre. This is because yesterday after writing the first post, my computer decided to crash and since I was writing directly on to the website I lost my work. But hey, lesson learnt. Both of these posts are going to be very basic, only touching on the key points of interest. If I go into too much detail I will lose my main focus and start typing out an essay that is completely unrelated. I was initially planning on making this posts quite professional but I starting to think if I do that it will take way too long to actually write what I want to say.
Shall we get started then. What is an Adventure game?
An adventure game is a game that is made up out of three components; exploration, storytelling and puzzle solving. Exploration means that the player is able to explore the game environment at their own leisure, often identifying the narrative through this exploration. Storytelling refers to how the game should have a narrative element to the game as it main focus rather than game play mechanics. Puzzle solving is pretty self explanatory, the game must contain problems that the player should be able to solve. These components will elaborated on in a separate post.
From this definition you can see why it is not easy to identify a game that belongs in the genre. As, according to the definition, it could be argued that the Uncharted series, the Dragon Age series, and the Portal series, all belong to the genre. However, the Uncharted games are considered as part of the action/adventure genre, the Dragon Age games are considered RPGs (Role Playing Games) and the Portal games are seen as puzzle games. And why is this the case because the roots lead to the creation of these genres all came from the Adventure genre. This topic will be eventually explored in it own post but for now back to the topic at hand.
The Adventure genre due to its large spread, people started dividing the genre into sub-categories based on the games interface rather than the main themes. Some of these include; text based adventures, graphical adventures, point and click adventures, escape the room adventures, puzzle adventures, exploration adventures, visual novels and probably others that I have forgotten to mention. (Yes, I will also be writing on each of these sub-genres as well.) These all have direct ties to the original concept of the Adventure genre.
The Adventure genre introduced a number of game mechanics that are still used today in other genres. Some of these are the inventory system, dialogue trees, direct input with a mouse, a number of sound systems and more. So overall, the adventure genre has had a huge impact in the develop of the medium of games and it is my hope that through this blog entries I can help the genre get the recognition it deserves.