speaking of video games
Someone emailed me a link to this article comparing console and PC RPGs. Interesting stuff, and I basically agree with the dichotomy it lays out:
Console RPG's are mainly made by Japanese companies. The "meat" of these games is provided by character development and long convoluted plots. The games are very similar to anime, having similar plots and very similar art. Anime and Japanese RPG's are intertwined a great deal. Fans of one are generally also fans of the other. The development of plot-heavy and character-heavy content in these RPG's is easy to understand when it is examined alongside Anime.
PC RPG's are very different from the Anime-related console RPG's. They emphasize simpler plots with branching story options and complex gameplay. The reason for this disparity is easy to see when you look at the PC RPG's roots. PC RPG's developed mainly from two sources: computer strategy games, and pen and paper RPG's. One of the oldest genre of computer games is strategy games. Wargames especially have maintained the same format for many years. This gives the PC RPG its complex gameplay. The variety of encounters, the massive skill systems, and the arsenal of equipment in PC RPG's all stem from the link to strategy and war games. The emphasis on a non-linear plot that the player has control over is taken from pen and paper RPG's. Pen and paper games required the game master to have a general plot idea in mind and adapt based on player actions as the session progressed.