Good party banter always gives me the warm and fuzzies. It’s here, when the heroes (or villains, depending on your alignment proclivities) take a break to have a wee blether, where you really get to know your digital mates, forging bonds that will make the big story moments really land. They might be jokes, sarcastic asides or even the occasional revelation, and together they contribute to a tangible sense of camaraderie that every squad-based game needs. Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy is the new master of this skill. 

BioWare is typically held up as the developer who’s perfected this narrative trick. The studio’s been doing it since the Baldur’s Gate days, and it’s consistently a high point in all of its RPGs. It’s crucial, really. When Inquisition launched with a bug that cut out the banter, it really revealed how much we’ve come to rely on it. Can you really know someone if you’ve not had a casual chat while exploring a spider-infested cave? Beyond RPGs, though, BioWare has steep competition from Naughty Dog’s oeuvre, particularly Uncharted. 

Drake and Co’s adventures really benefit from dialogue that sounds more natural, which is then elevated by context. In Dragon Age, most banter is random and relates to nothing you’re actually doing, but Uncharted’s bickering, jokes and conversations keep you in the moment, working together with the action to tell a cohesive story. 

(Image credit: Square Enix)

In Guardians of the Galaxy, we have the best of both systems. The Guardians never shut up, and I wouldn’t want them to. Whether they’re exploring an alien cave system or fighting corrupted space cops, they’re constantly spouting one-liners, making wry comments or fleshing out their identities. There are chats that feel like they could take place anywhere, but just as many that are ultra-specific, like you’ve got an audience giving you a running commentary. 

Whether they’re exploring an alien cave system or fighting corrupted space cops, they’re constantly spouting one-liners, making wry comments or fleshing out their identities.


Source link