Crimes Against Mimesis

k, in this context, mimesis is basically, the rope you use to willingly suspend your disbelief. That said, frankly, it’s easier to define in terms of when it gets broken. Basically, stuff that breaks mimesis is … things that are illogical with respect to the real world, that break your immersion, that remind you it’s a game. Now, some game conventions are acceptable breaks from reality (Super Mario Bros, anyone?), but in games that are trying to be “realistic”, other things are really jarring, and remind you that, for all its attempts to be realistic, it’s just a game, and not a perfect one at that.

Right now, I’m thinking specifically of the guy in Oblivion who says “I’m guessing you’re a [insert class name here]” right before you choose your class. I believe he bases his conclusion on your race instead of on what you’ve actually done, because he guessed that I (playing as a dark elf) was an archer. I hadn’t even had the bow and arrows equipped in his presence. In fact, I’d unequipped them shortly after the tutorial bit that says “use this bow and arrow to shoot that bucket over there!” I’d been using a sword and spells all the way. There’s no logical reason why he should have supposed that I used a bow and arrow, which was rather bloody stupid, really.

So, uh, yeah. Anyone else got any thoughts on this?

It’s based on the main stats your actions relied on, not on race. Sorry.

Well okay, but still … that’s actually part of my point. It’s basing it on what stat you used. The real world does not work that way. Why not do it differently, so he might make a better guess based on what he actually could have observed you doing? Because it’s more expensive and would take harder programming, you say? Well, look what happened when you didn’t do that. I use a sword exclusively, and occasionally whip out various spells, and that means I’m an archer?

I completely fail to see why you’re making a big deal over them not tossing a lot of resources to tracking your individual actions in the tutorial dungeon (which is kind of a bitch to do) just so some NPCs random guess that means NOTHING would be more accurate. I’d rather have them spend those resources on something more important.

Also the real world doesn’t have skeletons and fireballs.

While I agree that too many RPGs include stuff that doesn’t make sense with the story being told, I have to admit I laughed out loud when I was playing Wild Arms 4 recently and one of the characters commented (not exactly in these words, but more or less) “We have to jump on Giant Buttons to make the bridge appear? Why? Who would design a bridge like that??”

Yeah, heh. Haven’t played that, but in Jedi Academy, when Kyle Katarn and Jaden are confronted by a locked elevator, Kyle snidely comments, “The controls for unlocking it will probably be hidden in some room twelve floors up … how does that make sense?” (I like how Half-Life handles these locked doors better.)

Then there’s The Seventh Guest, in which one puzzle consists of rearranging soup cans (“What kind of villain thwarts the hero with cans of soup!?”).

Exactly the reason The 7th Guest puzzles were infamous.

Is the guy who asks you this in Oblivion an old man? If positive you should be ashamed for even making it an issue. And don’t ask me how I guess this :stuck_out_tongue: (Though old men in TES don’t really show their age. They just casually toss that their last millenia on earth were kinda boring)

He’s a young man working in the Blades and that wasn’t the only reason for this thread. :stuck_out_tongue: