New technology is fuelling the growth of gaming with social purpose

One of the directors behind Grand Theft Auto, Navid Khonsari, explains why he believes that play will be more purposeful in the future

When a director of the world’s most successful video game, Grand Theft Auto, started work on a title based around the story of the Iranian Revolution, it raised a few eyebrows in the industry. At his studio in New York, Navid Khonsari explained the decision: “I knew iNK Stories could create not just a pseudo-psychological experience but, by using real world events in a respectful manner, could give audiences the experience of substantial emotional impact.”

At The Future of Play, a forum that took place in London in July about the future of video gaming, it was proposed that interactive play is expanding beyond gamer and games console, towards a more diverse, mainstream audience. This is provoking a growth in games that focus on social themes including politics, ethics and human emotions.

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