I think Rod's post illustrates an important point which is often missed by many "instructional developers."
Rod used existing computer games as a demonstration of how an immersive, instructional program would work. He mentioned games like Myst, King's Quest and (shudder) Leisure Suit Larry.
I'd be interested to know how many instructional developers have formed alliances with games companies? It seems an obvious approach to me. The truth of the matter is that games developers face much of the same challenges that instructional developers face, but at much greater risk.
The legacy of the games industry is one of explosive growth, fierce competition, and a requirement for innovation. Any game which doesn't outstrip its predecessor by a large margin is destined for failure. Any games developer who can't produce interesting, engaging games is destined for bankruptcy.
The legacy of the teaching industry is considerably different. Who heard of the last time a lecturer was fired for being boring?
From what I've seen over the past few years, interactive multimedia and instructional software in general is slowly sliding towards game style applications. Shouldn't we just shortcut the whole process and embrace the games industry?