When action video games hit their first golden age in the early 1990s, concepts like “stealth” and “consequences” weren’t even a glimmer in developer’s eyes. The focus was on over-the-top carnage. The premise: if it moved, shoot it – though you could also kick, punch or stab it, depending on the title.
As the industry matured, though, in-game violence evolved. Narratives were added to the action, and heroes became more than one-dimensional instruments of destruction. It wasn’t a bad thing, per se, but it seemed like a move away from what hardcore action titles were all about.