The attraction with a video game like any other form of game should boil down to 2 things - Challenge and Reward.
Present a challenge and ALWAYS reward it.
There are numerous ways of challenging a player and numerous ways of rewarding a player.
Too many times story and dialogue cut in to the "action" and their very presence becomes a challenge on my sanity and attention span. The story in the metal gear series for example is just mind bogglingly tiresome. The action is stop-start and the rewards are yet more story. Dull.
The best example I've seen of late where a story serves to push things along at the right pace but very much plays second fiddle to the action is Prince of Persia (sands of time). Here we saw a love interest develop above the main story of power, greed and revenge. It was handled very well and didn't interupt the game's flow.
Without the story the game would have meant nothing to me.
But ultimately it was the feel-good factor that the game exuded through it's challenges and rewards that won it over.
More games should be like this.
Few games are worth their price tag these days.
Ironically the game I play most these days is Bomb Jack on the N-Gage whilst I'm having a crap.
Why? Because I want to beat my mate's high score.