James Morgan

Document Type

Final Class Paper

Publication Date



Video games will rot your brain. Something that people have told us during its inception into the modern world; however, little did they know that the video game industry will one day take its place in the world as one of the best mediums to tell a story and challenge its audience. The video game industry is an ever-growing industry where innovation flows through its veins causing it to grow into a field that is more immersive and compelling. Video games have also evolved into a field of study, a discipline that dives deep into what makes them a unique form of entertainment and medium of expression. At the heart of this growing field of study, lies an exchange of views that has set the standard for game development: the dichotomy between ludology and narratology. This debate covers the differences and similarities of the two: ludology, a discussion which focuses more on the mechanical aspects of video games which argues for games to be understood through their unique interactive nature, and narratology, an approach that views video games as narratives similar to films and books – a medium to tell a story. This written work aims to dive deeper into this debate, acknowledging its historical context, examining the difference in the arguments from both sides, and ultimately finding a middle ground between the two for a more integrated approach. As games continue to develop and grow, the ludological and narratological aspects of both become not just an academic exercise, but also an important understanding that will benefit the innovation of game design and player experience. By diving deeper into this debate, this paper hopes to discover deeper insights on what makes video games unique and how they are a powerful vessel of interaction and storytelling.