Storytelling reaches beyond the words and characters we see in games: the mechanics and creators’ experiences shape our gameplay too. We explore these themes and more this week on Intelligame Radio.

This Episode’s Interview: Narrative Director Xalavier Nelson Jr.

This week’s episode features an interview with Xalavier Nelson Jr., Narrative Director for Hypnospace Outlaw and Can Androids Pray. His current project, An Airport for Aliens Currently Run by Dogs, showcased at PAX South this year to great acclaim. He’ll also be speaking at Narrascope this year as the keynote speaker…he’s got a lot going on.

During our interview though, we talk about more than just his game projects. He reflects on his background both as a Black man and as a person of faith, which both influence his creation process. He also talks about the benefit of diversity and inclusion initiatives, and explains why his Intelligame makes him feel so loved.

Director’s Cut: Why is “The Last Bastion” Stuck in Eternal Deathmatches?

Popular multiplayer franchises like World of Warcraft and Guild Wars have rich, detailed lore behind them. This even applies to Overwatch, Blizzard’s hero-based shooter with only multiplayer game modes. However, the distance between the gameplay and the narrative can sometimes create an unfortunate disconnect, as detailed in “Why is The Last Bastion Stuck in Eternal Deathmatches?” This article talks a bit about the paradox and the problems with “having your cake and eating it too” in terms of narrative.

Jenny’s Game Recommendation: The Pedestrian

A game that’ll make you look at the world around you a little differently, The Pedestrian is a puzzle-platformer that transforms everyday objects. Traveling through streetlights, road signs, and more, players learn to make their way through the puzzles with some atypical thinking. That thought process gave Jenny some space to consider the puzzles in her own life, making it this week’s recommendation.

Find a link to this episode here.

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