This is the second installment in the series “4 easy ways to introduce Sci-Fi to your friends“. In this post, we will discuss the second way to introduce sci-fi to your friends: playing video games.
Video games have been extremely popular since the 90s especially fantasy and horror games. In the last 20 years, we have seen many video games based on the science fiction element space opera.
These games are mostly about alien invasion, end of the world scenario in a dystopian world, etc, etc. You’ll be facing different scenarios in the science fiction story of the game and get acquainted with the genre.
For the youngster fantasy games like the Legend of Zelda, Sonic The Hedgehog, Mario Bross is more popular than science fiction games (with youngsters I mean 16 years or younger). However, some people argue that the so-called “science fiction” games are actually science fantasy.
To be honest the good science fiction video games have elements of violence and other complex themes that should be discussed with the youngsters before they start playing these games.
Now here is the deal: how about you gather a few friends on a Saturday night to play games? Believe me, once you start you will be playing all night. Saturday is the best day because you’ll have Sunday the sleep it out. I’m assuming you are age-appropriate and Fridays are for Happy Hours (at least for me).
Here are a few video games that have a good storyline and may get you hooked into the story and into playing:
It’s a trilogy about war at a universal scale: Wings of Liberty, Heart of the Swarm, and Legacy of the Void. With a government that believed in the “Divinity of Mankind,” all humans with mutations or cybernetic enhancements were rounded up and imprisoned. Thousands of these “prisoners” were then frozen and sent off to form their own colonies. The socio-political world that Starcraft created is often overlooked but is deep and a good example of history repeating itself (1).
Deus Ex: Human Revolution
Despite using two Sci-Fi clichés, alternate timeline and Area 51, Deus Ex: Human Revolution still manages to put their own spin on the world created. Though it’s similar to our current world in terms of geography and timeline, it implements technology that is far from anything we have now. It’s the similarities to modern-day are perhaps the most disturbing. Corporate conglomerates swimming in profits while the middle and lower classes suffer. Government surveillance and near-police states. And, in what might be viewed as a scary piece of foreshadowing, domestic terrorists are striking back against the government. Maybe the world of Deus Ex isn’t that far away (4). This cyberpunk game is beautiful, sophisticated, and raises some big questions: what really makes us human, and what is the next phase in our evolution? (1)
Mass Effect: the Shepard Saga
Racism, homophobia, political corruption exists on a universal scale in this Mass Effect trilogy. In the game, most of those vices are aimed at humanity as a race. We’re naïve to the ways of the universe, and we’re fighting for equality on every front. It’s a shocking reflection of our own society.
While the first game in the Mass Effect series was very good, the second installment in the trilogy was unforgettable. Mass Effect 2 boasted the perfect combination of RPG and action-adventure with an incredible and moving storyline at its core. Mass Effect 2 gave you a huge galaxy to explore and hours of extra gameplay were available if you were diligent and persistent (2).
Dead Space is a science fiction survival horror video game that was met with widespread critical acclaim. The story is set in the year 2508 and begins when the USG Ishimura, a “planet-cracker” starship sends out a distress signal to the Concordance Extraction Corporation (CEC) during a mining operation on the planet Aegis VII. The CEC dispatches the USG Kellion to investigate. After a guidance system malfunction crashes the Kellion into the Ishimura dock, the crew tries to seek other means of transport. As they explore what appears to be an abandoned ship, they are attacked by monsters, killing off all but ship systems engineer Isaac Clarke, Commander Zach Hammond, and Computer Specialist Kendra Daniels (3).
It looks like the creators took everything they knew from Alien, Event Horizon, The Thing, and Doom and created a sci-fi horror masterpiece. The sequels are good, too.
Want to check Part 1?
What did you think about the recommendations? Do you have a few of your own? Will you consider playing a few games with your friends? Feel free to leave your comments. I would love to hear from you.