Video game documentary maker NoClip has uploaded an interview with Prey designer Ricardo Bare and game director Raphael Colantonio that explores what goes into creating immersive sims.
The full video is full of interesting tidbits, and is a must watch for anyone looking to bring a sense of immersion to their game project.
For instance, at one point Bare explains that 'immersive' doesn't necessarily have to be synonymous with 'realistic.' The world you create must have consistent rules, but those rules can be as outlandish as you want.
Take Prey's shapeshifting alien. It's a decidedly bizarre creation, but the design team still ensured it followed strict behavior patterns that players could predict and eventually manipulate.
"One of the ways I like to think about [immersion] is: you can get different experiences and feelings from games, but one experience is 'I've figured out the solution to this puzzle,'" explains Bare.
"There are a lot of games like that, but what [immersive sims] do, that I appreciate, is give me the sense that I'm in a place where anything is possible.
"The rational part of my brain knows that's not literally the case, but because the mechanics in the game are so open ended and expressive, I feel like I can try anything and it might work. I don't know if I would call it realistic, but the world behaves according to rules, and if I can learn those rules I can begin to improvise."
To hear more from Bare and Colantonio, you can check out the full video above, or over on the NoClip YouTube channel.