Steven Spielberg to Make Us Cry?

Print publication The Economist recently featured an article about the need for increasingly sophisticated artificial intelligence in video games, speaking with industry members such as Facade co-creator Michael Mateas and Electronic Arts LA head Neil Young. Currently, EA LA is working on a title with Steven Spielberg as part of a three franchise deal between the publisher and the filmmaker. Buried within The Economist's article is an intriguing hint at the basic concept behind Spielberg's first game.
Tellingly, Doug Church of Electronic Arts, who gave the keynote speech at last year's AIIDE conference, recently started work on a game with Steven Spielberg where "the focus is on building an emotive relationship at a story level and a gameplay level between the player and another character," says Mr Young.

The brief description is more than a little reminiscent of past declarations on the part of both Young and Spielberg that, someday, a video game will make you cry. Spielberg postulated, "I think the real indicator [that games have become a storytelling art form] will be when somebody confesses that they cried at level 17." Young stated, "A computer game still hasn't made you cry. I think we'll crack that problem in the next five years and it'll be a watershed event for our business." That was during GDC 2004. Presumably, Spielberg's first game with Young's studio will meet its implied March 2009 deadline.

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