Video Game Genre

Okay here’s the thing. Genre is made up and not real, but it’s also useful when you’ve got a bunch of stuff and you need to keep it organised. Have a look, don’t take it too seriously. You’ll get yourself into trouble.


Featuring blockbuster titles like Tomb Raider, Half-Life, Assassin’s Creed and the Arkham games, as well as lesser-known indie titles like Furi and the effervescent One Finger Death Punch.


Honestly, I hate platformers. I’ve made my way through a few titles – like Rogue Legacy, Hollow Knight, and the Mirror’s Edge games (which, yes, I am counting as platformers) – but this section will never get very long.


From the side-scrolling small child running through the dark (INSIDE, Monochroma, Black the Fall) to first-person games about shifting blocks and pushing buttons (Portal, QUBE, The Talos Principle). I’ve also put the Hitman games here, and I do not feel bad about it.


It would be great if this section spread from party-based JRPGs through to classic chosen-one adventures, but in reality it’s mostly just Dark Souls.


Bang bang die trash haha that’s what shooters are about. Featuring major franchises like Halo, Call of Duty, and Borderlands, as well as some stuff that’s actually good haha zing


We have simulators for everything these days. Janitor sims. Driving sims. Treasure hunting sims. Probably a sim where you watch paint dry.


Most games have a story, but some games are better defined as stories rather than anything else. They’re visual novels, character pieces, texts focused on vignettes and dialogue. They’re the best.


Strategy games are where you sit around and think about playing instead of actually doing it. They’re contemplative, measured, sometimes very boring. XCOM, Stellaris, and Kingdom – the gang’s all here.


Everything is terrible and you’re probably going to die. That’s also the premise of survival games. Don’t Starve and Subnautica are in here, as well as No Man’s Sky, which – mm, does feel like a bit of a stretch.


‘Walking simulator’ is one of those terms that started out as a pejorative, but has been embraced whole-heartedly as a badge of honour. Walking simulators are good and fun. They share a lot of overlap with the Story category, but they usually have more walking.


This is all the otherwise hard-to-categorize stuff. A couple books, Pan’s Labyrinth, some general theory that’s not specific to any particular text – oh, and the video game manifestos, they’re worth a read.