In his essay Adam Ruch uses a particular game, Fable 2, to explore broader issues in contemporary game theory. These include the debates which seek to position video games as either narrative forms or ludic experiences. Ruch moves beyond these debates in his consideration of the competing imperatives involved in playing and analysing games such as Fable 2. He demonstrates the competing forces at play as three sets of rules pertaining to simulation, game and story interact. Through a close study of this specific game, Ruch shows the complexity of this contemporary form, an intersection of technology, aesthetic strategies, design, narrative drive, commercial imperative and, of course, sound and image.
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