The video game industry is being revamped by the young-adult video games. Are they the next era that gamers will embrace?
The most recent hit game “Inside” allows you to be a child running against horrifying surveillance state of 1984. But this is not the only child game available. There is “Life Is Strange” in which you are a girl at a boarding school battling with your own set of powers. “Oxenfree” on the other hand features a group of teenagers that arrive on an ill-fated island after a wrong advice. One common thing about all these highly successful youthful indie games is that their stars are young protagonists. That is what many end up calling the young-adult video games or simply YA.
One thing for sure is that the YA have become more of a genre on their own rather than just demographic for book readers. Earlier on, YA fiction used to target just the young children – mostly 13 to 17 years of age. But today, the YA fiction has become hugely popular with the grown-ups.
With this kind of large mass following, it was inevitable that YA would soon be part of film and television industry. It has even gone as far as colonizing video games.
Components of Young-Adult video games
So what should a YA genre constitute? The setting can be anything such as science fiction or high fantasy. Most definitely it must have a young protagonist(s) focusing on young characters – falling in love or even lead a postapocalypse rebellion. The level of emotion is also raised. When these stories are well executed, they excite emotions not only in young gamers/viewers/readers but also the adults as well.
Video games provide an opportunity to effectively tap into the young-adult stories. This is particularly favored by the fact that they give the gamer full control over how the characters behave. For instance, “Inside” allows you to always push the young protagonist on the right screen. Murderous soldiers, dogs and other brutal objects are ever pursuing him. Throughout the whole journey, the child remains anonymous.
You can thus see that with this kind of control over the characters, you get to determine their behaviour or rather, how you would behave had it been you.
Without any doubt, young-adult video games are the next big thing.