Yeah, it’s been the one feature that I’m really missing badly. Edge was genuinely a very good UX experience as far as a daily driver browser goes, and if it weren’t for the persistent feeling that I ought to be supporting FF just so there’s a little diversity in the browser space I’d probably still be using it.
I switched back to Firefox from Edge recently (I know, dont @ me) and the only thing I’m really missing at all is the way that tab grouping works in Edge. You can just drag a tab over another tab and it will automatically create a new group for them, then you can collapse groups in the title bar if you’re not using them. That plus Edge’s tab sleeping made for some easy and intuitive tab management that I haven’t been able to recreate in Firefox yet. I know there are some tab grouping extensions but none of them let you drag/drop in the title bar, and a lot of the better ones are very focused on tree syle vertical tabs, which I don’t hate but don’t really use much. I prefer tabs being in the title bar, because that space is going to be there anyway so I might as well fill it up with something useful.
It could be just my personal preference of course
I think that’s probably the case here. I really enjoy environmental storytelling, and piecing together a story from bits of lore and clues scattered around a game world. It’s just a different way of telling a story than a more guided or linear narrative. It’s not objectively better or worse than more traditional story forms. I do think that it is a type of narrative that is easier to tell in a video game than it would be in another format, which is why it feels like such a novel experience to me. I had a very different experience of Breath of the Wild from you, incidentally. Which I think just goes to show how strongly subjective these things are. I found BotW to be incredibly engrossing, and I’ve beat it at least three times, the last of which I cleared all shrines. I mostly didn’t approach the game as a checklist of things that needed to be done, though, or as something that needed to be progressed through in order to get to a particular point. It’s not really structured that way. If you want, as soon as you get off the starting plateau you can just go fight Ganon. There’s literally nothing stopping you other than a lack of health and good gear, and from watching speedruns it doesn’t actually take that long to get pretty passable gear anyway. I constantly found myself traversing huge portions of the map in that game just out of curiosity to see what was over the next hill, or around this mountain, and I felt that the game almost always rewarded that curiousity.
I don’t think that Open World mechanics are at odds with good story-telling, I just think that they are better suited to a different type of storytelling than the traditional linear video game story.
I think the problem is more that a lot of studios want to shoehorn a traditional linear narrative into an open world and usually what that ends up meaning is one of two things. Either you have certain places that the game tells you to go to get more story, and the rest of the world is really just sidequest land (looking at you, Ubisoft), or you wind up having a lot of exposition thrown at you while you’re moving from point A to point B (Rockstar…).
I think good story-telling in an open world is possible, but to effectively use the open world it needs to be different. Environmental storytelling is a lot more important in these types of games. I think Breath of the Wild did a pretty good job of this, although it wasn’t perfect. But I think the environment was put together in a way that you could really start to understand the backstory of the world without somebody lore dumping at you. The problem with BotW is that they didn’t trust the player to pick up on the story, so they still included the lore dump. I think Elden Ring also has some really good open world storytelling. It’s opaque but very evocative. You’re given a few details about the past, but the real heavy lifting is done through the environment and the items you find throughout the world.
This is an older article that I’ve seen elsewhere before, but it’s a good one and I can’t image the problem has gotten better in the intervening time.