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Extreme Ninjas Use Windows, Not Doors: Addressing Video Game Fidelity through Ludo-Narrative Music in the Stealth Genre

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A significant factor in the aesthetics of video games is the need to compensate for a lack of, or poor fidelity of, sensory information that would be present in the physical world. Although dialogue, sound and music do play a ludic role, by providing information to compensate for this, in general there remains an over reliance on visual UI (User Interface) which has to fight for attention within an already overwhelmed sensory channel. Through a methodical analysis of the functions of audio in the stealth genre this paper identifies the limitations of current binary threshold approaches to audio feedback and puts forward music as a potential vehicle for providing richer data to the player. Music is accepted as a continuous audio presence and is able to provide information to help to prevent player failure, rather than sound effects or dialogue which often serve simply as a notification of failure.

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