To NPC Or Not To NPC, That Is The Question.

BY URVIL JAMES VILLARUEL

 Fable (Xbox).

Apr. 12, 2016, Toronto, ON - We all have a story. But only the very few of us ever really enact the free will necessary to make our own decisions in life. Similar in nature to that of a video game, life presents us with many mediums of interaction upon which we engage with on a daily basis. Thus, by looking at life in these terms, we are afforded two main choices for how to interact with the world: (1) engage life as a role player, or (2) engage life as an NPC (non-playable character).

The role player is governed by the person behind the controller. They are free to choose what they wish to do in the world; restricted only by the laws of the game. Gravity, time, and meaningful purpose serving as but a few of these in-game laws. Then, there are the NPCs. The uncommonly-common myriad of characters interacting with the role player, meeting and helping them along the way towards the pursuit of their own great story in life. They, too, have a story; but theirs is scripted and devoid of any real choice. They are governed by the game, so far as to recite verbatim what the game has foretold; never truly able to deviate. They are controlled; restricted; not-free.

The difference between these two sets of characters is their employment of free will. They role player can choose to progress alongside the development of their own personal legend, or choose to spend infinitum doing whatsoever side-quest they see fit; always knowing that their personal legend looms just above their heads.

And so, when realizing life in these terms, it is only fitting to ask ourselves: Who will I be? Will I be the one to enact my own tale, the role player of my own video game called life; or will I enact the tale foretold unto me by the coders of the game --- living out my life asleep, agreeable, as an NPC?