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.

Modern Warfare 2

This is actually the first game since Fallout 3 that we’ve picked up on Day 1 (not counting gifts and promos here).  I tried ignoring the hype across the web over the recent weeks, but it gets harder to ignore when you find out the game is only £28 at Morrisons, and the boss offers to go to the shop to fetch it (while getting copies for half the office too).

We ended up picking the PS3 version up because the others at work were going for PS3 too.  We’d decided it was a toss-up between PS3 and 360, because if we were to choose PC, we’d have to buy two copies.  I prefer shooters on the PC, but I can see we’re going to increasingly move to consoles as we don’t want to pay for a game twice.

So – MW2.. I can see why people have been raving; it deserves the hype!

Controls-wise, it feels very like COD 4: Modern Warfare, so quite easy to pick up and get into.  Graphics, wow.  There’s an amazing level of detail, blood effects and lighting seem bang on.  Sounds seem perfect, fitting the environments, and the voice acting particularly is really well done.  More gravelly voices 🙂

So tonight I enjoyed sneaking around in the snow with a heartbeat sensor, picking off guards..  followed by a mad dash in the snow mobile section after a confrontation with some guards and a bit of a scrap.  No trophies though, which seems to be something affecting a few others too.  Tim got his, so I’m not sure quite what happened there.

For me, the single player missions need to be done first, before playing with other modes.  This does mean at my pace, which is on the slow side, but I’d rather take my time and enjoy it than race through but not really take in all the details.

After that, maybe some online, but definitely some co-op 🙂