Psychopathic Tendencies Become Public with Crowd Play

Choosing your own adventure in a deep, heart-wrenching, story-driven game isn’t something that many gamers take lightly, especially when it comes down to making life-altering decisions with characters we’ve all come to love. In real life, making quick haphazard decisions is no big deal, but in a Telltale series these are probably going to be the hardest decisions you will ever have to make. Never mind the fact that these decisions are split second decisions that give little to no time to really think over and unlike real life these decisions, come back to haunt you much quicker down the line. Nevertheless, Telltale has conceived a brand new way to stress you out and make you feel even guiltier about your rash decision making with an added an extra layer.

By now most if not all of us have heard about Batman: The Telltale Series and its introduction to a new multiplayer concept known as “Crowd Play,” the brand new feature intended for groups of family and friends to gather around on the couch or online and connect to the host player’s game. The host player who is the one at the controls has two options: either give the crowd total control over the game or use it as a kind of consultative panel. So basically, if making quick and or tough decisions wasn’t hard enough for you, now you have a group of emotionally-compromised players watching your every move and decision while also feeding you either intentionally good or bad suggestions on what to do next.

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“The most important point is that Crowd Play is a local multiplayer experience. It’s designed for everyone to be watching the same screen, at the same time, in the same room and works best with 4-12 people,” said Telltale. This is an intriguing and fun idea that the folks down at Telltale studios have come up with as usually single-player gaming tends to be a passive and lone experience. Now, family and friends can sit around on the couch and enjoy the ride of the story along with you and much like group watching a horror flick in your basement with friends, everyone can shout out at the screen and scream what the central character should logically do next. With this new addition to the game, however, comes a whole new dynamic, especially if you are planning a family game night with a Telltale story.

The intended purpose of the Crowd Play experience has been summed up by Telltale in one statement, “We sincerely hope that families, young and old, will be Crowd Playing together, inspiring conversations about why they made the choices they made, and bringing everyone closer together.” In theory, this is a great way to pull the kids out of their room of gaming seclusion and have a bit of family fun after dinner, but let’s not forget these are Telltale games we are talking about here. Telltale games are known for making hard, life-altering decisions for the characters that inhabit these worlds and although we don’t really foresee Batman doing anything that isn’t quite “family friendly,” I assume that new Walking Dead or Game of Thrones titles coming down the line will also harbor this type of multi-player experience.

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Obviously, little kids are not going to be playing these type of mature titles alongside their parents on the couch, but young adults might and I have to say, I personally wouldn’t want to explain to my mother and father what inspired me to make the choice to cut some dudes leg off, bash someone’s head in with an cinder block or steal supplies from a bunch of innocent people. Its like inviting my parents to come watch me goof around in Grand Theft Auto…it’s just not a good idea. If they saw some of my morally compromising decision making and complete ease in doing so, they might think I’m a complete and total psychopath when in reality I’m either doing what I think is right in the moment or what I think would spin a better tale for the story down the line.

I personally enjoy stories filled with harsh no turning back decisions and of course death. I enjoy watching a beloved character fall in the battlefield and I relish in the heartbreak that said characters demise delivers to their fan base. A story without consequence just isn’t a story worth telling in my book, but I don’t really want to explain my psychopathic tendencies in games to other people. Although it sounds like I’m against the Crowd Play feature, it’s actually quite the opposite. I can’t wait to sit down with friends and bring ruin and heartbreak to their personally-beloved characters.