This story is interesting in its parallel narratives and the lack of linearity – the idea whereby your different choices with generating differing consequences. It was indeed very confusing at times because you would have to refer back to where you previously was at, but that is the essence of parallel universe. This structure is definitely very common in games as well, where choices matter into the outcome. However, we can see the Tsun still shoots Albert and it is not an ending that can be altered based on the different outcomes. This is once again also rather common in games where branching narrative converge all into a point – no matter how hard you try to change your outcome sometimes it is still fixed. I think this is the most intriguing aspect of this narrative – how different paths end the same anyway.
This text is an illustration of time, whereby it diverges and it converges, the debate whether it is uniform or absolute – a complex system. This is an interesting theory in which I saw in the game Bioshock Infinite – the world centred around the concept of time travel and parallel universes, yet at times all parallel universes will converge in a point of time in a major decision (e.g. whether Booker becomes a protagonist or antagonist in the context of the game).
This text was certainly intriguing and I am interested to see how to further develop this in my narratives and projects.
Zimmerman’s article was a very interesting piece that provided insight into the understanding of game and narrative. This also helped open up new insights into this already well-known subject.
Initially, I had a preconceived notion of a game-story, mainly being a game straightforwardly driven by an overarching narrative. For example, most triple-A titles e.g. RPGs like The Witcher 3 whereby the revolves around the main character finding his daughter; Point-and-click interactive movies like Until Dawn which touches on survival in an island. This text helped me understand that even simple games have a game-story, like Pac-man has much more to offer apart from its surface gameplay, interesting game-story as a backdrop.
Witcher 3, classic RPG that fits the traditional game-story and interactive narrative
Zimmerman widens the perspective of what consists as interactive narrative, and this helped me relooked at games in a different light. The kind of interaction most people are more familiar with; is the straightforward interaction where your participation affects the outcome of the story. Once again referring back to the Witcher 3, it is explicitly participative because the outcome of the character’s fate all determines based on the player’s choices. Zimmerman helps us view that it is an eye-opener to see that many narratives can be interactive in a certain manner. Books can be interactive depending how you view it. However, Zimmerman’s definition of what is narrative might also make the scope of what defines as interactive narrative, being too wide as well. As much as I do believe this concept is subjective and narratives can be interactive in a certain way, I still find a medium like newspaper not as interactive as compared to a choose-your-own-adventure book, since invoking feelings might not be enough but once again this is subjective.
Ultimately, stories are interactive depending on how you view it, along with games, depending on how to choose to play them. Definitely, out of all the concepts that Zimmerman presented, no single concept takes precedence over another since they all work hand in hand to create an complex interactive narrative or game.
The next thing to think about perhaps, now that we have learnt these concepts and new viewpoints from Zimmerman, is how we can push the idea of interactive narratives beyond the traditional well-known concept of it – the mostly filmic concept? How can these concepts intertwine more?