If you’ve been reading this blog for a while, lovely lurkers, you’ll already know my love for the game series Thief. Unfortunately, the only one that plays on my system/s now is Thief 3 (I did get some nerd help on the Node recently so that may change).
I came across the below video in my ‘Net meanderings today–it’s all of the cutscenes from Thief 1, in order. Now obviously one doesn’t get the full story with all its depth and nuances just by viewing the cutscenes–the gameplay has a lot of the characterization, plot twists, etc. But it was really neat to look back on this and read/view it like a story, and also remember how cutscenes were celebrated in this game (OMG! I made it! Now I get a cutscene!) and how lovely the artwork is. It’s not as realistic as most of the modern games I enjoy (Assassin’s Creed is one series that has kind of replaced the unplayable old Thief these days), but it’s the stylized art that makes it that much better than if it were realistic late’90s graphics.
At the moment, I am on a committee that is developing courses for Regis University’s Communications program–courses on Media and Aesthetics. I’ve also been interestedly following the video-games-as-art debate that’s been going off intermittently like firecrackers over the Web. Seeing these cutscenes made me appreciate not only the visual aspects of the art of this game (which is gorgeous), but the literary artistry too. Seeing how the three main “factions” of the fictional city are bit by bit revealed, and the mysterious prior history of the City too, being unfolded in shards, makes me respect the game’s writers all over again.
If you decide to watch this and haven’t played the game, know two things: 1) you’re not getting the whole story: as I mentioned above, a lot of plot and character is in the gameplay itself, and you may even be confused if you don’t know who the Hammers, Keepers, and Pagans are. 2) SPOILERS! If you have the ability to play this game through, I highly recommend getting your huge plot twists after much play time–it’s that much more satisfying. If you don’t care (okay I know I’m a huge geek about this game and may be the only one left) and just want to enjoy some good game-art, go for it! If you have played the game, it’s a lovely reminder. Also to get psyched up for Thi4f! ~Jenn
Oh, and here are the cutscenes for the arguably inferior Thief 2, in case you’re interested:
UPDATE: Some of the cutscenes in the Thief 2 series are out of order. Also, you can watch the cutscenes from Thief 3 here: http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=FBA227D03F8A1616