You need to look at the subject from a broader angle. A game doesn't need to meet any particular gameplay challenge standards. If you choose to put story first, you design gameplay that serves the story, not competes with it. The gameplay is there for interactivity first and challenge second. That doesn't mean the gameplay has to be easy. For example, it could include making the gameplay more abstract (Cultist Simulator, Fallen London).
Some designs do include making the gameplay easier and less obtrusive. On the other hand, some games are osensibly gameplay-oriented, but they would completely lose their appeal without their stories (Deus Ex, VtM: Bloodlines). It can also work the other way. I didn't play Planescape: Torment for the gameplay, yet the story wouldn't be nearly as engaging if the gameplay wasn't there along with it.
Some games are close to being interactive movies (Longest Journey, Life is strange). The gameplay elements aren't as much there to challenge the players as to make them feel immersed in the world. Adventure games in general are excellent storytelling mediums.
I don't disagree that trying to squeeze a fancy story into a classic FPS or hack-and-slash is often not a good idea, but that's a matter of bad design choices and not an issue with games as a medium.
>The problem with story telling in games is that good story telling requires control.
Good story-driven game design gives the player the illusion of control but doesn't hand over control of the story essentials. This is hard to balance, hence why many designers fail, but it's by no means impossible.