God Games

In god games the player controls a supernatural being who can intervene in the game world in many different ways, such as super powers and miracles, these interventions affect the beings inside the game world which the player cannot directly control. The goals of god games are normally very wide and allow the player a large amount of freedom to interact with the game world

Game play narrative features

The game play of god games is widely varied, in games such as populous the game play revolves around territorial conquest for success Whereas in the Sims characters control a small family of Sims and attempt to meet goals in game (Surely "The Sims" comes under the simulation genre?). This is an incredibly wide genre category and can contain almost anything.

Lifespan

The first god game was utopia on the intellivision in 1982 and there have been many new god games created up to the current day, the genre is very popular due to the freedom and control they give the players which is a aspect many people enjoy.

Limitations

One of the main limitations of the genre is that whilst the game play is very open ended the maps and characters are normally created and reused in different situations in the different levels, the alternative is randomised creations which don’t have much realism, this problem may be addressed in the upcoming game SPORE which will feature procedural generation to create events and situations for different games.

Key titles

Utopia: was the first god game title on the intellivision which introduced the genre

Populous: released in 1989, seven years after utopia, on the commodore amiga and Atari ST,this game improved upon the concepts put forward in utopia, and was on a more powerful platform and had much nicer graphics.

Black and White: released in 2001 for PC black and white was renowned for its innovation to the genre

Future Predictions

I predict that the gameplay of god games will continue to branch out and offer players more freedom in the simulated environments, they will also grow to incorporate features from other genres such as RTS or RPG to appeal to more different people.

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