Storytelling is at the backbone of our—if not most—societies. Not only is it how people communicate primarily (often we remember stories and experiences over facts and dates) but it is also how one personally makes sense of the world around them. Telling stories about events—both the entertaining and the traumatic—not only communicates information and emotion to a listener, but solidifies it and makes it tangible for the teller: in a way, allowing the teller to cope with the existence of such events, and how they have changed because such events occurred.
Since the dawn of human history, stories and art have come hand in hand: visuals to accompany a narrative, symbols to communicate concepts for survival, depictions of threats, both real and—more importantly, in this case—metaphorical. It was only recently (in perspective) that the study of art therapy became accepted academically and practiced, but the concept can be linked back to that most basic aspect of storytelling alone—creation and communication are therapeutic in themselves, helping one to rationalize their anxieties and be understood by others, no matter the quality of what is ultimately created.
With advancements of technology, the way stories are told has expended immeasurably, and the tools with which to tell those stories have become increasingly accessible. The art we create to tell our stories can be an experience that not only requires a listener, but requires and active participant in the story, and video games give the perfect platform for such an experience.
No longer are we mere storytellers, hoping that a listener may understand and empathize with us, because we can now create worlds and narratives that a player must directly interact with and become a part of the story we want to communicate. Video game development is not just about an industry—it is a vehicle for people to construct their own narratives and encapsulate them in an experience for a player: a process that is not only therapeutic for the creator, but increases communication and empathy between the creator's vision and a player.