Space marines are much more common in video games than wacky characters like talking skulls or magic-wielding guitarists. Brutal Legend designer Tim Schafer says the reason behind this is financial.

"The industry is imitative. A lot of people are chasing the last thing that was a big hit," Schafer told Eurogamer. "What we need is a big hit comedy game. As soon as we have one, everybody will follow, of course."

"It's just like with movies. Easy Rider was one of the first indie movies that ever made a massive profit, because it cost almost zero to make and then it was a huge hit. People were like, 'Oh, that's an interesting business model. Spend no money and make a lot of money'."

There are a lot of games that are funny in spurts. Grand Theft Auto, for example, is rife with comic relief. Even in these cases, though, the larger story is told with a straight face. I'd imagine it's not just a matter of games imitating each other, though. Games imitate movies to a large extent and most action flicks are serious affairs, too.

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