Warning: This article contains spoilers for Red Dead Redemption.
There is something rather beautiful about playing video games. You have a company and usually one man or woman who is known for creating the story behind all of these games we know and love today. One of the most important aspects behind a game is a script. It can make or break a game. I remember playing Final Fantasy VII and crying like a little baby when Sephiroth killed Aeris. It was heartbreaking. Story wise, since it’s been so long since I’ve played it, is the one thing I remember about it.
Then came Final Fantasy X, who can play that game only once? It’s a sprawling game and it was a lot of first for the series. It was the first for Sony’s brand new toy: the Playstation 2. It was also the first with voiced characters. A genuine leap into the new console for Square, Final Fantasy X was my favorite of the series. I am so happy to say that it deserves the HD remake it’s getting. The story was breathtakingly sad. I loved every minute of the story and these stories I loved growing up is why I became a writer. It’s been my sort of kick-start into what I am today. The world wouldn’t be half as interesting as it is now without great stories to play and get inspired by. The ending to Final Fantasy X is what made it’s concrete stamp into my heart today. When you brush off the whiplash of the ending, you sit down and want to punch the screen because of how Yuna is portrayed to be handling what was just thrown at her. She stands up strong and that is a powerful message for kids and young adults to take in when playing a video game.
Later on, I played one of my favorite games on the Xbox 360 and shockingly enough, a touching story came from the somewhat corrupted minds behind Grand Theft Auto, and that game would be Red Dead Redemption. I am not going to say the game is flawless, but it’s story is mighty close. The thought process behind creating a wonderful sprawling western epic for a shooter crowd was something of a ballsy move for Rockstar. It was called Grand Theft Auto on horses, but it’s so much more than that: it’s beautifully told with voice actors who put you in the story and a writer who drew you in. I absolutely loved it. I kept playing the ending hoping I could save John Marston, hoping since it’s a video game I could somehow play God with him. I wanted him to live so I could exact rightful vengeance upon the unlawful jerks who tricked Marston into doing what he had to do for his family. I sat watching the ending, triggering memories I had made throughout the story like his own life was flashing upon my eyes. It was an astounding game and I couldn’t have been more engrossed into a story since I played Mass Effect or Final Fantasy X.
Although I have touched on only three games in a history of great stories in video game history, these are by far my favorites. I thoroughly enjoy a good story in a game. I almost feel like a collector of these amazing stories, like they belong on a certain shelf in my life, in my heart and in my console. I’m overly protective of them like an overbearing mother. I can’t express how much I love them in one article or with words entirely, but they belong on everyone’s shelf and in everyone’s disc tray, one way or the other.