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The Details of Dead Bodies in Gaming 195

Via Stephen Totilo's Second Player blog, his most recent post at MTV concerns dead bodies in videogames. This rather morbid topic may seem like a small concern, but it's a big deal for the people making the games. From the article: "Dead bodies have been vanishing in games for decades because of technical difficulties. Old 2-D games -- like just about anything on the original Atari, Sega and Nintendo systems -- could only display a limited number of character graphics, or sprites, on a TV screen at one time. Letting a zapped enemy lie prone on the playing field caused problems, limiting the amount of new things, like new on-rushing enemies, that could be drawn onto the screen. 'You would end up sacrificing one of your precious moving objects to display an essentially useless dead body,' [game designer Ralph] Barbagallo said." With the advent of the newest generation of consoles, Totilo explains, we now have the luxury of corpses as far as the eye can see.

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