Games without narrative from get-go will become “obsolete”, says Yerli

Wednesday, 14th April 2010 15:07 GMT By Johnny Cullen


Games that don’t build in a narrative process from the beginning of its development will become “obsolete,” Crytek CEO Cevat Yerli has told VG247.

“For me, I think, after this game and other games doing similar things, games where narration or writing or novels are not part of it from the outset, those games are going to be obsolete, I believe. I’m quite convinced about that,” Yerli told us at the formal reveal of Crysis 2 last week in New York.

He pointed at Far Cry, developed by Crytek itself for PC in 2004, as an example of where things could go wrong with plot.

“With Far Cry, we just slapped the story on later after we’d done the game,” he said.

“We just finished the game and said, ‘What’s the journey? Well, let’s see; what do you do here?’ We put it in afterwards. In Crysis, we wrote the story, but we had, like, 25 cast and whatnot. The screen-time alone is not enough to build any character whatsoever.”

Yerli further added: “In Crysis 2 we decided to do it from the outset, that it would be part of everything we do. Hence, Nanosuit, New York: the location has an arc, the Nanosuit has an arc. It’s not just that I read a book and everything has an arc; it’s to make sure the player is driven by the arc. I want to know what the deal is with Nanosuit 2. I want to know what the deal is with New York.

“And I want to know why the heck the aliens are here and where they come from. I want to know why the humans are shooting at me. These are all questions that are going to be asked and answered as you go through the journey, but that’s going to pull you through the game without you thinking it’s more fun to shoot the aliens or the humans than experiencing the story.”

Crysis 2 releases this holiday season for PS3, 360 and PC.

Get the full interview with Cevat Yerli here. Part one is here.



  1. Bulk Slash

    Yeah man, Tetris is totally fucked if they don’t add a story about the L block trying to destroy the universe with only the plucky T block and his sidekick Square standing in the way of galactic Armageddon.

    #1 5 years ago
  2. pleasant_cabbage

    Tetrislol ;)

    -edit- Dammit! Beaten by the Bulk! :)

    I agree there needs to be more coherence and interdependence with narrative and gameplay though.

    The ‘slap it in at the end’ approach is actually killing my interest in SP games a little.

    Getting a bit sick of stories getting padded out to make games lengthy. Or is it the other way around? ;) If you can’t write a good story to cover the 14 hr long game you made don’t shoe-horn one in. Similarly, if your game isn’t good enough to play for loads of hours a nice story only helps a little.

    #2 5 years ago
  3. Tallon 4

    I can’t take no more Crysis 2 news. System overload.
    Synthax error in 3289878.

    #3 5 years ago
  4. Freek

    Why are these guys talking so much smack? Every other news post Crytek is criticizing some specific game or games in general. 0_o

    #4 5 years ago
  5. AHA-Lambda

    yea they had better hope they have got god’s gift to gaming at this rate and given crysis 1 I doubt that =/

    (don’t hate i still liked crysis, just thought it was very overrated)

    #5 5 years ago
  6. Eon

    I seriously wish these guys would just stop talking, a couple of news articles were alright but now I’ve heard enough about were other games have failed and how exceptional the story will be in Crysis 2…just give us something to look at or a little bit of information about some other aspects of the game.

    #6 5 years ago
  7. TXYeti

    Cevat Yerli is a complete and utter jackass. Why would games w/o stories “at the onset” become obsolete? Because we’ve seen that happen in other forms of media over the last 100 years, in movies and TV, right… they NEVER come up with a concept for a movie and slap a bad story on it later, do they? And audiences never spend millions on movie tickets or spend hours in front of the TV watching poorly written content who’s stories were afterthoughts, right? RIGHT? I wish holier-than-thou jerks like this would keep their Christ-forsaken mouths shut.

    #7 5 years ago
  8. BraveArse

    What a knob.

    CryTek have always been all about the engine and fuck the content. At least that’s how their games have appeared to me.

    First criticise one of the few games that truly nailed narrative in games in the last year as “not doing justice to the medium of game” ( and how wanky is that for a phrase?). Then imply that your own game is somehow at the forefront of narrative in games.

    As impressive as Crysis and Far Cry were – the narrative element was derivative, tacked on and tiresome. If you planned the story in those games from the very beginning then you really have problems Yerli.

    #8 5 years ago
  9. tont

    So hold on, Mr Yerli is talking 2005 ‘we’re creating a cinematic experience’ nonsense about his new game? If anything, the idiotic, over-referencing, obsessed-with-being-films awfulness of video game stories over the last few years should point to the idea that forcing the player down some hideously contrived grab-bag of ‘cool’ references in a pitiful attempt to justify balls-out action is the fucking last thing anyone trying to be at the cutting edge of video games should be trumpetting.

    If anything, games need to abandon this tiresome, teenage obsession with forcing stories on the player (fuck you, MW2, Mirror’s Edge, AC, ME1, ME2, Just Cause, Heavy Rain, GTA IV etc) and focus on letting players create their own, far more compelling and interesting stories of what *they* did and what *they* discovered and what happened to *them* in the beautiful and complex worlds games can now create.

    Why players should even give a toss about what slice of non-interactive triteness (cutscene or in-game) was doled out to them after they blew up utterly deriviative giant alien boss #2345667 when they could be actually doing something far more interesting instead is beyond me.

    Yerli has it completely the wrong way around. Games without stories are the future, because they’ll be interactive systems that realise the player’s own story is the important one to tell and that the strength of the medium in in facillitating that. But then, I guess Yerli’s personally signed off a fuckload of money for that writer dude, so he has to be concerned about the ‘arc’ of the nanosuit. IT’S A FUCKING SUIT, BRO. ITS ‘ARC’ CAN BE SUPPLIED IN A FUCKING PDF IF IT’S THAT BIG A FUCKING DEAL. PERSONALLY, I’D RATHER BE DOING COOL SHIT WITH IT.

    #9 5 years ago
  10. AlmightyDogbert

    This hasn’t even happened in literature,

    I mean, look at twilight.

    #10 5 years ago

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