Full motion video games: did you play them?

The fact that a cult classic like Night Trap is about to be re-released made me wonder if other people of this forum have played full-motion-video games and if they enjoy this kind of games.

I haven’t played many of them and I’m completely incapable to see why people like the famous Text Murphy series so much, but I have tried a few:

The fabulous “Her Story” and its very original gameplay:

Contradiction - Spot The Liar! , with a bit of bad acting but with an enjoyable story:

Late Shift, which I have to finish yet but I’m already impressed by the high production values:

I would also like to try, sooner or later, The Beast Within: A Gabriel Knight Mystery and Star Trek: Borg (but I’m not sue if there is a way to buy and download a digital copy of it).

What about you?

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I dunno, I´ve yet to see one that is not supercheesy, from that standpoint many of them are fun I guess.

I played the X-Files game when it was new, but don´t think I´ve ever finished it.

How this ever managed to be supercontroversial, is somewhat beyond me.

This is cheesy as hell, and it´s even better in the german dub and if you´re from bavaria on top of that it´s the most hilarious thing ever! :joy:

I played some during the 90s. I enjoyed Phantasmagoria, Gabriel Knight, The 7th Guest, The 11th Hour, and a few others.

However, some of the ones you point out there came much later.


Well, they were all cheesy, but the Gabriel Knight games were very much so. Hehehe.

Now, what would give you such an idea?


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LOL! :laughing:

Took me a while to work out what a full motion game is but

that helped. I nearly finished it. I enjoyed pointing my gun at Skinner and making him say, ‘don’t do that.’

Anyway I’d possibly revisit that genre - Contradiction looks interesting.

I haven’t played a lot of FMV games, because I didn’t like the them much. (Or in other words: I haven’t found a FMV that I liked :slight_smile: )

btw: Are you referring only to adventure games? Because for example Dragon’s Lair and Space Ace were FMV games too.

And speaking of adventure games, “The Last Express” used the rotoscoping technique. So it is and is not a FMV. :slight_smile:

I was thinking about that part when I wrote that. His “I would be really dissapointed in you if you did that” look combined with the fact that it always leads you to death row (even if you don´t shot anyone in particular) is such a scream.:joy:

I think people usually associate games that have lowres video with real actors in it (like in the 90s) with the FMV term. The Don Bluth games were an exception but if you include them as well, those are great of course. Hard but great (they´re on steam with slightly easier modes). I wonder if popularity in Dragon´s Lair is about to raise again now that a movie adaptation is in the works and the game will be featured in Season 2 of Stranger Things.

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It’s true, most of them are cheesy. Among the three games that I have cited in the “Steam boxes”, only “Contradiction” is a bit cheesy. “Her Story” and “Late Shift” aren’t.

I just consider Night Trap funnily cheesy. When it was published, the topic of violence in videogames was still debated and I think that there wasn’t even a rate system for videogames at that time.

Maybe “interactive movies” might be a better name for this kind of game. I have seen the expressions “FMV game” and “interactive movie” being used interchangeably.

The overacting of the main actor is unbelievable, especially if you compare it with the other actors. I suggest buying the game only if you are OK with typical overacting that you find in b-movies. :stuck_out_tongue:

I was referring to any kind of game that uses pre-recorded videos as the main part of the gameplay. I would include among these games Dragon’s Lair and Space Ace too.

I really really wanted to like this game. Unfortunately I don’t like that kind of game mechanics (you need to be in a specific location at a specific time to observe/do something).

Yeah I’ve since watched the trailer. I might put that one on the back burner!

I understand this decision. Don’t get me wrong: the game is overall a good experience and its Steam reviews are overwhelmingly positive for a reason, but the acting of the playable character can be really a letdown. I was encouraged to proceed only because the other actors were quite good and sometimes very good. There is a character who is quite funny and that helped enjoying the game more.

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As far as I know it was this game along with Mortal Kombat that was responsible for the introduction of a video game rating. Making this the “Night Of The Living Dead” of videogames I guess. Writing that feels so wrong, even if it´s technically correct…

The '90s was a different time, indeed. I remember when Married With Children was a super-controversial show. These days the show’s idea of pushing boundaries seems downright quaint.

That and Beavis & Butthead are great examples of people not getting satire.

I first played the English CD version (still sold in Germany) and later got my hands on German dub version. And I couldn’t stand that they redubbed the policeman to speak Bavarian. :sweat_smile:

“Weeeeeeer siiiiiie siiiiiind!” :smile:

What´s even funnier is that, with the language barrier removed it makes the whole conversation even more awkward.

It´s a bit like in Inglorious Basterds where “I need you to translate” became “I need you to hold hands” in german.

I have just finished one of the games cited in the first post: Late Shift.

I have to confirm that my first impression was correct and that the game is a well-crafted interactive movie, if you compare it with other similar “games”. Production values are very high, the actors are quite good and some choices had actual consequences on parts of the story.

Being just an interactive movie, the “gameplay” is very thin: you watch the movie and every now and then you have to take a decision that usually leads you to a different branch of the story.

This is a screenshot of my stats:

I have seen only one ending, so far, and probably I’ll play the movie again to get a different ending. Replayability is somehow debatable, because to reach a part of the story that you never saw, you still have to watch large parts of the movie that you already saw.

As a game it can be a bit boring, but as an interactive movie it does a good job, if you don’t expect a Hollywood blockbuster.


One of my favorite adventure games is Harvester. It’s FMV but not an interactive movie. It plays like a traditional p’n’c game, just happens to use actors and video cutscenes. It’s dark, disturbing, weird, sometimes experimental. It’s absolutely unlike anything I’ve ever played. It’s an old game but I played this just a few years ago and my mind was blown. Seriously, I didn’t expect any game to move me this much at my age, or jump into my favorites next to games like MI. It’s not for everybody though, that’s for certain. Those who get it, are often hardcore fans as can be seen on FB fanpage (getting a Harvester tattoo is pretty hardcore IMO).

I bet there will be a sale on Halloween, so maybe it’s worth checking out for 1$. I bought it on GOG.

I played:
Rebel Assault demo
Dragon’s Lair
Braindead 13
But I never finished any of them. I guess, I get bored pretty fast with that kind of game.

I don’t think that will qualify. “Full motion video” in this context means prerecorded motion of the scene, which includes backgrounds. But the backgrounds are still images in this game, so it clearly doesn’t qualify.
Also if a game only uses full motion video for intro, cutscenes and/or transitions doesn’t qualify as a full motion video game either, as it is not “full” but only parts of the game then. Many CD exclusive games before 3D accelerators took of are of that kind.