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How Myst revolutionized adventure games
Myst Like GamesFew computer games in the history of gaming have inspired the type of emotions that Myst did. If you played the original Myst game, you either felt one of two things: hatred or joy. Not too many people were on the fence when it came to these type of games. But whether you hated Myst or loved it, you can't deny the impact that it had on the adventure genre.
In fact, Myst inspired dozens of Myst like games to follow on its footsteps. To name just a few:
- Dreamfall, Siberia (I and II);
- Culpa Innata, Phantasmagoria;
- LucasArts' The Dig;
- The Longest Journey.
These games like Myst are realy amazing and if you're a loyal fan of adventure games, you will love them! Now, what was it about the Myst game that brought out unbelievable emotions in gamers and had huge companies trying to copy its formula for success? Let's have a look at what made Myst so revolutionary...
A Different Route
At a time when gaming companies were focusing on FPS (first-person shooters) and working on gambling-related software for places like online blackjack sites, a small Spokane Washington studio called Cyan Woods was busy working on the last thing people would've expected to become a best seller: an adventure puzzle game. But by the time Myst was completed in 1993, a buzz was already being generated and people were eager to see what this game was about.
Backdrop of Myst
Myst certainly wasn't about character development as the playable character's name was Stranger. Stranger used a book to travel to the island known as Myst. These books, which were written by an explorer known as Atrus, also played a big part in helping Stranger travel to different Ages. As Stranger traveled through the Ages and solved puzzles, clues about the game's characters were unlocked.
The gameplay featured a first person view where people clicked on the screen's objects to make things happen. Players also picked up items that would help them complete the game, and only a certain amount of items could be carried at one time.
One of the most interesting aspects of the game is that players were given no indication as to what they were to do and they had to start exploring immediately.
Although Myst experienced commercial success right away, not everyone realized why this game was revolutionary. In fact, lots of players had complaints right off the bat. One of the most common complaints was that the puzzles were too hard. Gamers figured that since little text was given that the puzzles could have been at least a little more self-explanatory.
Another complaint is that the game featured few characters and little interaction with anything other than objects; most people thought of Myst as a lonely, cold game. One final complaint was that Myst created a lot of copycats in its wake.
Those who didn't already dislike the game began to resent Myst for its unparalleled success. Of course, the complaints would definitely be overshadowed by the positives when everything was said and done.
Ahead of Its Time
In an era where character development, storylines, and interaction were crucial in adventure games, Myst took the opposite path. The creators of Myst wanted the actual world to be the focus of the game. Myst didn't rely on characters to carry the game because the beautiful screenshots did all the talking. Little text was needed because the story was told visually and players became immersed in the world of Myst.
Myst challenged future adventure games to focus on visual aspects and feelings rather than just presenting a linear storyline where character interactions ruled the day. And while Myst's single screenshot way of presenting these aspects was a bit crude, it at least set the bar for adventure game developers to work on creating an overall experience. Should you already played all Myst games, there are other great Myst like games out there that we recommend you to try them.
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How Myst Revolutionized Adventure Games
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