Why should everyone have subtitles and thought clouds? Because it's easier to follow the narrative that way of course. With this topic I am wading ankle deep into the pool of raging disparity that is the "Games are Art" argument. Personally I firmly believe that games are indeed an art form and, for once, a gaming big-wig agrees with my philosophy! Denis Dyack of Silicon Knights at the recent developers conference stated,
Gameplay is not everything. If you look at the most popular games today, they are far more narrative-focused.
I suppose when you think about it, games are essentially interactive movies (aside from Wii Mini-game discs) and the narrative of a game is just as important as it is in a movie. After all, what is Casablanca without the famous "Heres lookin' at you kid?" The same goes for Marcus Fenix's Speech in Gears of War. In that spirit, I say this unto you good patrons of The Upstream! "War...War Never Changes..."