Hackernoon logoWhat Makes a Story Immersive? by@David

What Makes a Story Immersive?

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@DavidDavid Smooke

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This Slack discussion with Limarc Ambalina occurred in Slogging's official #expert-interviews channel, and has been edited for readability.

David SmookeJan 12, 2021, 4:08 PM
What makes a story immersive?
Limarc AmbalinaJan 12, 2021, 4:24 PM
Talking about fiction, I'd say immersiveness is dependent on how well someone tells the story through the medium they are working in. This can be paperback novels, television, video games, VR, everything.

A skilled author can make a traditional novel more immersive than a film.

And some regular video games can be more immersive than virtual reality games on a top-notch console.
David SmookeJan 12, 2021, 4:34 PM
A good storyteller can certainly create an immersive experience in any medium.

VR has a huge setting advantage, i.e. it almost takes over the whole setting.

I think throughout history though the #1 thing to create an immersive story is connection to the main character. Everyone fashions themselves relatable to the hero.

You could argue, we are all just operating own narrative. Do you think we are living in a simulation?
Limarc AmbalinaJan 12, 2021, 7:18 PM
I think you’re 100% right about the immersiveness being tied to your connection with the main character. I don’t even think you need to necessary relate to the main character in a large way. All you need is one piece of truth about the character that you can sympathize with or understand whole heartedly.

For example, my favorite novel is https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Road and luckily, I have never lived through an apocalypse while trying to keep my son alive and away from groups of cannibals. So why did I connect with the main character of The Road? Because the core of the story is about love and a father’s love for his son and a son’s love for his father. It’s about hope in something that is probably hopeless. And these are things most of us can relate to.
Limarc AmbalinaJan 12, 2021, 7:19 PM
Do I think we’re living in a simulation? That’s a tough one. But I think no. Mostly I hope no because I think the alternative would make reality too grim for me to get out of bed in the morning and pursue anything of value.

BTW about the main character in stories topic: What novels or stories do you love that had a main character that isn’t similar to you at all?
David SmookeJan 14, 2021, 3:59 AM
I haven't read The Road. Do I have to wait until I have a son to appreciate it more?
David SmookeJan 14, 2021, 3:59 AM
Obviously no... but I would appreciate it more then.
David SmookeJan 14, 2021, 4:01 AM
Anyways added The Road to my list!
Limarc AmbalinaJan 14, 2021, 4:02 AM
Oh...please do. It's epic.
David SmookeJan 14, 2021, 4:02 AM
And we are living in a simulation? WTF is simulation? Maybe life and simulation are synonyms?
Limarc AmbalinaJan 14, 2021, 9:44 AM
I would say a simulation by definition is something that is not real, but simulates something that is real like the "flight simulator, bus simulator, bee simulator" games. (yeah there is such thing as bus simulator....it was as boring as it sounds, for me at least).

We could be living in a simulation because there isn't a way of knowing right. God could be a super-intelligent multi-dimensional being running the world on a supercomputer.

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