229 What If You Could Smell Your Gaming

I think smell is an underrated sense in storytelling.

I’m sure multiple large companies and entities have considered a Smell-O-Vision of sorts for video games. But I think it could add a layer of depth (to certain types of games) that would feel like “how did we play games without this!?”

Imagine playing Uncharted, and as you walk through a dense patch of tropical weeds, you can smell the grit of the dirt, and freshness of a nearby flower, or the sweetness of some low-hanging fruit. All the sudden, you’re picking up a pungent bitter scent, and realize it’s cigar smoke, or maybe gasoline and exhaust.

You’ve just smelled your enemy long before you could see or hear them.

Just one example of when smell could be incorporated into gameplay. There are more obvious examples of when it could be simply used to help elevate the mood of a scene; the smell of rain, perfume, laundry, fresh bread, or dog poop.

Technically speaking, there would be dozens of hurdles to overcome to make this a reality. It might manifest as a peripheral or a slot built into the hardware that accepted “scent cartridges” that were produced for specific games, and had the compounds in them to create a few dozen different smells throughout the game. Or maybe if the tech were advanced enough, we could distill down all smells (or some semblance of those smells) to various combinations of a few dozen simple compounds. However it would happen, I think it would be a game changer.

[ Today I Was Playing: Skulls of the Shogun and MouseCraft ]

August 17, 2015

#experimental-game, #game-hardware, #game-opinion