Bit of a rant, really

Bit of a rant, really..

No Russian
I knew there was to be a potentially shocking, disturbing, upsetting, whatever, section to MW2.  I saw the little warning screen, asking if I was happy to see something that might upset me, and I clicked OK.  It’s a game.  If it comes to it, and I really don’t like it, then I’ll think about skipping.

Now.. I was thinking this would be a torture scene, as in a previous game, with captors beating a tied-up victim.  I played my first few hours of the game, and while I felt cruel shooting the people in the airport, it didn’t strike me that this was such a bad thing – you are playing the part of an undercover agent, who has infiltrated a terrorist group.  You’re meant to be doing cruel things.

I completed that mission and went on to the next – not realising that this had been the potentially shocking, disturbing, upsetting section of the game.  Am I overly hardened to in-game violence?  Maybe – but it’s a GAME.  I wouldn’t shoot civilians in an airport in real life, though, any more than I’d speed down the road, smashing through barriers and mounting pavements, followed by fleeing the cops, orthan I would  join a gang and shoot up the neighbourhood, or sneak around thieving from people’s houses.  You know, like in other GAMES.

To add to this, there are some ridiculous politicians getting involved, and just highlighting the fact they don’t even understand gaming in the first place.. one thought PS3s were something that kids walk around with in their hands.  Yeah.

So, they’d like violent games banning, because we might go and copy this violence in our everyday lives.. there’s more violence on the news.  Via news channels, I have seen somebody shot in the head, and seen the bodies of troops massacred by terrorist groups, in far more grisly detail than in a game, which I know to be simply fiction.

Parents – bitching that these games are training the nation’s kids to be terrorists – why are you letting your children play an 18 rated game?
I’m in a fairly ranty mood today 😉

This one came up at the office: length of games.  Some games are a decent length, and you feel you’ve had your money’s worth.  Others are just too short, and it seems that we’re losing length and gameplay for the sake of a bit of shiny graphics.  Sure, some have replayability, or multiplayer to carry it on, but other story-driven games are pretty much done after the first play through.

The one this really hit me with was Half Life 2: Episode 2.  I felt that I was really getting into the game, only to see it finish after just a few hours.  So instead of “wow, what an awesome game”, I was left with a sense of disappointment – as well as some anger that I’d just spent the amount of money I had to get the game.
Bundling other games in with it is not, in my view, a reasonable excuse for the price, or the shortness of the episode.  I wasn’t given the option to purchase Episode 2 by itself, so instead had to buy a bunch of games for other people with my purchase, because I already owned them.  And guess what?  Most of my friends are also gamers, and already had the games, or were buying the pack too.

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