Whilst the term ‘sci fi’ originated in the early 1950s and was mostly associated with ‘low brow’ B movies and pulp fiction, the genre has been around for much, much longer than that. If we really want to get technical, then creative humans have been telling science fiction stories since the dawn of the Common Era. Through the development of various media down the ages - such as written novels, radio plays, movies and TV shows - the sci fi style has developed and endured. So, it’s no surprise to find that it is also a popular genre in games of all kinds. Whether it’s in long-awaited AAA releases like Cyberpunk 2077, mobile adventure games like Out There, or themed slots like Starburst, a sci fi theme adds mystery, excitement and imagination to any gaming experience. But why does it work so uniquely well within this particular form of entertainment?
There’s Scope for Fleshing Out Complex Storylines
One of the most important aspects of sci fi content is the storyline. It’s true that the genre often gets a name for unfinished, poorly constructed or overly fanciful storytelling, but it’s also just as famous for pushing the envelope, thinking outside the box and going where no other creator has dared to go before. This can certainly be said for those sci fi video games which have put an enormous amount of effort into their narrative arc. Great examples of this include series like Fallout, Mass Effect, Halo and Final Fantasy, where each new game in the sequence furthers the narrative and introduces ingenious new details to the plot. Because these games are so large, the writers are able to include much more story development and really flex their world-building muscles. In fact, in many ways, there is more space within a game than there is in a novel or movie; because games are often user-directed, there is no need to condense storylines into singular 90 minute sittings or finish them within 400 pages.
It Can Bring Futuristic Tech to Life
In Hollywood, CGI, SFX makeup and talented props departments have brought to life the futuristic technology found in sci fi movies and TV shows. However, in video games, developers are able to take things one step further. As they are working entirely within a virtual world, they needn’t worry about blending special effects with real world sets and there are no restrictions imposed by the limits of human actors. Instead, they are given complete creative freedom to create on-screen mindbending machinery like the ‘odradek’ in Kojima’s Death Stranding or the Pip-Boy from the Fallout series. Ideas developed within video games have even gone on to influence real-world technology, and the gaming industry was the sector that pioneered significant growth in both AR and VR tech. Whereas written sci fi fiction enlists the reader’s imagination to create an image of any futuristic technology in the story, video games can not only show fully realised machinery on screen but can also add in-game functionality that the player can experience for themselves.
But Above All… It’s Fun!
One thing we cannot overlook in this article is how much fun it is to explore a virtual world, strewn with innovative new technology, peopled by intriguing characters and containing exciting scenarios. Thankfully, websites like GamesRadar, MetaCritic and Casinos.co.za all provide reliable, honest reviews of the various types of games available for consoles, PCs, mobile devices and more, so that players needn’t trawl the internet searching for the perfect title. For example, Casinos.co.za can advise interested parties about online casino bonuses, games selection, safety and security measures, deposits and withdrawals, compatibility and more. Most gamers don’t have the time or inclination to check out each new game or platform in this amount of detail themselves, so using a review site means that they know they are accessing a trusted service without having to put in hours of labour to confirm the fact. Checking the front pages of platforms like Steam or Apple Arcade is also a good way to find out about the hottest new titles first. These homepages are curated to highlight games, developers and genres that are experiencing a surge in interest, earning positive reviews or putting out impressive new content. By simplifying the choosing process, customers can spend more time enjoying their new favourite game!