@redswirl I actually wanted to bring a possibility related to that for the VN/Love podcast. Could it be that in a way, Dragon Age as a series and other games in general are sort of ‘evolving’ towards a VN. The majority of response I’ve heard about DA2 is that people really didn’t care about the combat, but instead, about the characters, development and storyline. I wouldn’t reload the game to get out of combat in an optimal situation, but I would and did reload combat to hear what Merrill said if it got cut off. Is the combat and mechanics in certain games becoming sort of vestigial, it’s designed not to be a serious impediment, but speed bump that absolutely everyone can get past with their only investment being time.

Now, don’t get me wrong, reality check says that it’s unlikely any companies are going to just scrap gameplay entirely tomorrow, but as gameplay becomes more and more of a formality, is it possible that some games will possess challenges so trivial that it might as well not be there at all? Flow comes to mind, as well as the increasing movie to gameplay ratio of SquareEnix titles.

What do people think? I’d also be interested in other evolutions that come to mind, for example, shooters sure are carrying a lot of RPG elements in them these days…