I have had this idea brewing for years and I finally think that I can just about make out a real manifestation of it on the horizon. It is a slightly hard notion to convey, so please forgive me for my potentially poor articulation of the idea. For the next generation of consoles, instead of Home or NXE; Sony, Microsoft or Nintendo could implement this new concept.
Okay, similarly to Home the platform is a non-obligatory virtual world, with each player having one or more avatar or mii or equivalent. The key thing to grasp here is that this hubworld is realistic. Not just quite realistic, but disgustingly realistic. Boring old real life simulation. Let’s call this world Komboworld (why not?). Players then embark on a career or real/imaginative journey to the world of a game, from Komboworld. If the player decides in Komboworld that they want to be a footballer, they pop in the FIFA 2012 disc and the game is programmed to link up with Komboworld.
Like the ‘Be A Pro’ mode in FIFA 2009, players will embark upon a personal career or adventure in the game. The progress that the player makes in this game could have Komboworld ramifications, like more money to buy things, more respect stats, more fame stats or anything really. Another example could be some FPS, say Farcry 3 or COD6. Either the game could be treated as an adventure within Komboworld, like recruitment into the army or a trip to Africa, or alternatively could have a more symbolic approach: The Halo Simulation Programme, a daydream or just the avatar’s imagination. Nevertheless, even if the adventures are not depicted as actually happening in Komboworld players should still get some kind of reward (or even punishment) in their Komboworld existence as a result of playing these careers or adventures.
I feel like I’m losing you, so to re-establish: all games are linked to a super-realistic hubworld, where sections or all of the games played correspond to careers or other events in the hubworld. The concept is an amalgamation of the existing systems with a little extra thrown in. It would be like a worthy reward instead of achievement points or trophies and avatars would be truly, truly customisable. Bad gamers or infrequent gamers would be appear as simple citizens, perhaps with a dayjob in the army, whereas some nerdy 24/7 gamers would be government rebels (Mirror’s Edge 2) that happen to be accomplished in heart surgery (Trauma Center: Third Time Lucky); but no-one would never be skilled magicians that can fly.
Clearly it is an unpolished idea, with grey areas as to how to implement some of the more surreal games and questions as to which content should be linked to avatars and which to exist solely in the game. Anyway, I have always dreamed of having a character that I carry through different games and ever since The Sim’s had jobs and promotions that affected your ability to customise your house etc. and I think it would be awesome to have all games to essentially co-exist as one.
Rather than point out flaws in the idea, does anyone have any thoughts as how to further advance this notion? And does anyone else think it would be sweeeet!!? No? Okay, just me then.