This is what you have to look forward to, if you’re gaming on an Alexa, by the by.
Back in 1995, one of the coolest bits of technology I found was in my phonebook. There were numbers you could call to interact in audio games, like interactive mysteries and fantasy adventures, like a Choose Your Own Adventure story via phone. But then I realized I could just. . . you know, play a game or read a book. The downside being that you have to stay on the phone, and cell phones weren’t a thing yet. And I’m pretty sure my family thought I was absolutely goddamn crazy. But what does this have to do with anything? I’m getting to it, jeez! Come on guys. Now we have the Alexa. You can talk to Alexa in your living room or somewhere in the house, ask it about the weather, play a playlist of music, set appointments, test its ability to search the Internet for answers, or play Runescape. Yeah, that’s right. You can play goddamn Runescape on your Alexa. The big quote from the source is “Jagex’s flagship massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG), has become the first prestige PC game to introduce an exclusive audio-based adaption of its award-winning content as a skill for Amazon Alexa.” And while Runescape is definitely a groundbreaking MMO, has had a measure of success with its latest game, Chronicle, but I’m not so sure I’d call it a “prestigious MMORPG” at all.
But what it is, it’s a Choose Your Own Adventure Runescape game. You question suspects, listen to the clues, and if you’re good enough, skilled enough, will ultimately catch the killer. I do not know how long this is, and since I don’t have an Alexa, probably won’t anytime soon. But I promise you if I do acquire one, I’ll try it. For you guys. My main issue with this, is you have to be near an Alexa device, and have to listen carefully, and answer wisely. Do I think it’s an interesting idea? Of course. You have to stand around an Alexa to bloody play this game. Can you pause? Save? Come back to it later? What’s going to happen when your family starts interfering in your game? Or decides they want to do something that doesn’t involve you screaming at your Alexa because it won’t do what you want? I have questions, Jagex! The potential here is grand, I won’t deny that. But it seems like it’s a bit misplaced. I can’t picture myself wanting to do this where people could actually hear me. I love Choose Your Own Adventure, I love mysteries, but, I want to love them in private. Not where my friends and loved ones can question my sanity. It’s still new technology and it’s not the most precise. . . as you can see in the above video. And let’s take the time to mention Xbox One’s voice controls! They aren’t quite as precise or helpful as one might think. I can think back to many times Colton began shouting at his Xbox to search for something on Hulu when it would have been much faster to use the damn controller. Sure, Alexa’s bound to have a better mic/voice recognition system, but yeah. I think it’s an interesting choice, but I don’t think the Alexa is where I want to do my voice-controlled gaming.