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A Hen

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  1. A Hen

    Far Cry 3.

    Yeah, that annoys me, too. I'm now just picking up collectibles, so I'm tearing over the island, climbing mountains, sliding down them, doing huge jumps in cars, swimming rivers and swamps, diving to shipwrecks, etc., and yet every so often I run over a small bank and die with an alarming crunching sound. The hunting syringes (specifically the one that makes animals avoid you) come in handy during the later hunting missions, by the way. The likes of bears and leopards charge you, but then they veer off at the last second. Makes it easy to punch them to death, or whatever you're required to do by the end of the game.
  2. A Hen

    Far Cry 3.

    To be fair, the Far Cry 3 designer addresses that in the RPS interview. He says that Spec Ops is about killing, but he's not going for that. Apparently, his theme is about entertainment - what you're prepared to do (in a game) to be entertained. I guess that worked, as I did press through uncomfortable cut scenes in order to get to the next fun bit. Whether it made me think about games any deeper is a different matter, but the game did succeed in making me feel uncomfortable.
  3. A Hen

    Far Cry 3.

    From that RPS article:
  4. A Hen

    Far Cry 3.

    Yeah, I've been saying that since the first Medal of Honor. There was all the Private Ryan-esque "sacrifice blah blah blah" stuff, but in the actual game it's all "dakka dakka dakka Rambo GI kill the GermansNazis! Isn't killing fun?!!!!!! Woohoo D-Day was a laugh!! Die motherfuckers, die!!!!" and then at the next loading screen is all solemn music and text saying "But they were heroes". The overall effect feels totally disingenuous, like the developers want to have their cake and eat it, and actually made me feel the game was in poorer taste than if they'd just done a Wolfenstein type fantasy set in WWII. I'm all for debating the limited scope of games, but I don't see what telling players off for enjoying your game is supposed to achieve. Players who already dislike gung-ho violence/imperialism either won't be playing the game, or will be willing to enjoy it as a game (me), and will just think "yes, I know, not can I get back to the fun bit - killing pirates". Meanwhile, people who don't care aren't going to listen, and will, at best, get annoyed that you're "hand-wringing" about it. I don't see it as an area where there are many fence-sitters who might be persuaded. I suppose it is possible to address these themes in a game, but not, in my opinion, by making killing enemies really fun (so not the first CoD then, LOL) and then having linear scripted bits telling you that your character is a psycho, then it's all "now back to the fun bit where you can do whatever you like - as long as it involves killing some shit!".
  5. A Hen

    Far Cry 3.

    Disclaimer: I am ill, so my feverish rantings might be less reliable than Jason's point of view. Anyway... There are some interesting comments at the bottom of that article - good points well made. I did, however, have a bit of a WTF reaction to some peoples' take on the main story. So, on one side we have the "biggest slave trade/drug production operation in the Pacific" (or whatever the game calls it), and the villains are portrayed as a vile bunch of casual killers, slavers, drug pushers, torturers and rapists. On the other hand, we have the protagonist's friends who are... bland and, for some players, slightly annoying. And people are saying things like "I cheered for the antagonists". Really? That makes me despair for humanity. Or are people just trying really hard to be "cool". Hmmm. Also, there's some suggestion in that discussion that the game designer intends us to cheer the villains to some extent. Really? If that's so, then he failed hugely. I enjoyed killing every last pirate/merc, for the aforementioned reasons, felt no remorse. In real life, I'm hardly pro-death penalty, and yeah, I got that my character was descending into barbarism, but in the game killing the "bad guys" (and they were, unequivocally as bad as anyone can get) just seemed like by far the lesser or two evils, and entirely justified. Most of all, though, the game made killing pirates really fun, and knowing that my character went nuts/was manipulated doesn't change that. As for the "unreliable narrator"... That's another huge fail from the designer as far as I'm concerned. When I was playing, I got that the boss fights were not happening exactly as the protagonist perceived them to. Judging from the aftermath of some of them, they apparently happened, er... slightly differently... woo. As far as I could tell, however, I was still killing a bunch of vile scumbags, so the details made exactly no difference. But outside of these sections, and the cut-scenes involving the Rakyat rituals, it felt as if the protagonist's perception of events was dependable. But wait... does the designer mean that Jason's perception in the entire game was "unreliable" too? What am I to make of this? Every time I took a base, was I massacring a village, or something? Presumably not, but then... what? If it's that open to interpretation, then it gives me precisely nothing. Unreliable narrators only work if you have them unreliable enough to be interesting, but still define parameters so the audience have some frame of reference. Otherwise, your lovingly-crafted story and "message" are guaranteed to be missed. So, I think the designer's approach was an epic fail all round, really, and he can complain that we "didn't get it" till he's blue in the face... but, as far as I can tell, he didn't give us anything much to "get". I suppose the fundamental problem is that it's a game type where you have to kill hundreds of people. But then Far Cry 3 tells us off for enjoying this. It's like if you went to the opera, and the lyrics of the songs went on about how shit opera was, and that you were immoral for liking it, or something. And then, at the end, they sang "if you enjoyed that, more of the same next time, folks". It's a bloody good game, though.
  6. A Hen

    Far Cry 3.

    When they took out the respawning outposts, the developers were presumably responding to people moaning about it in Far Cry 2. Now everyone (not here, but on other forums) is moaning that the outposts don't get retaken. Personally, I hate games where your progress is undone. It's why I didn't play Far Cry 2 - the respawns. If I achieve something, I want it to stay done. I loved this about Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood, too - the feeling that you were, bit by bit, sticking it to the Borgias. OK, it's not entirely realistic, but neither are infallible respawns. I fight against entropy enough in my daily life. Of course, there could be a middle ground - outposts get retaken occasionally - that would be OK, I guess. However, I'd want it to happen rarely - at the very most 10 times in the 40+ hours I spent with the game. Another factor is that taking outposts is part of the player's individual strategy. You can choose to go outpost liberating before you get too far with the story. This is what I did. I wouldn't bother if they kept getting retaken. Also, except in one or two places, players don't have to take the outposts. If they prefer, they can leave them, and enjoy the pirate patrols and mini outposts in each area - I guess this was part of the developers' thinking when they chose to do it this way. Edit: another option would be the ability to respawn the outposts when you've finished, without affecting anything else, a bit like the option in Crackdown to reinstate the gangs (I think someone mentioned this upthread somewhere). Then it could be the individual player's choice.
  7. Wow. It wasn't a bad game, but it felt a little rough around the edges for a Nintendo title. It still had shit like "you can't read this sign from that direction" in it. Ugh!
  8. Good post - I hadn't thought about Master Chief's role changing. That said, I read the Fall of Reach novel before Halo 2 came out, which fleshed out Master Chief's background, and only made me more excited for Halo 2. So, I'm not sure that fleshing out the background is, in itself, bad. I think it was more the way they did it; that, and wasting the potential of the game's background in general (e.g. the promised "exploring a Covenant city" levels, which should have been full of mystery and tension, manifested as a vaguely interesting corridor slog).
  9. It's not that important in the scheme of things, but a small part of me really did die when I played Halo 2. None of the others have ever got close to bringing that feeling back. Replaying the original does. Trouble is, every Halo sequel has had people saying it's as good as the first game, and then I've played it, and it's been nowhere near as good. And when I say "nowhere near as good", I mean not in the same universe, let alone ball park. It's not that they're bad games; I accept that for some people they may be better than the original. But for me, they just don't have whatever it was that made the original great. Then people defend the sequel by saying "it's better than every other FPS out there". In the context of the discussion, I simply don't care; I want another game that's better, as good as, or almost as good as, the original, in the same way that the original was good, whatever that was. I don't know, I'm not sure anyone knows, including Bungie, and - almost certainly - 343. I have been burned now four times by dissapointing sequels, each time because people said "the others were rubbish, but this one really is the best one since the original" and I've let this feed my own wishful thinking. No matter what anyone says about 4, I'm not going to believe them, for this reason. Sad, but fool me once, erm, um, won't get fooled again, as a very wise man said.
  10. I agree, except four types of grenades was two too many.
  11. Yeah, my experience when I took in my pile of old tat in was much better than any Game encounters in recent memory. When I said I probably wasn't going to spend my credit today, the guy said "fair enough", and that was it. I wasn't asked if I wanted to pre-order a game that doesn't come out for two years, didn't have a loyalty card pushed at me, didn't have own-brand peripherals recommended to me, etc. The staff member was a little bored, but friendly and helpful, etc. I wonder if they have re-thought their policy of scripted selling at the till, and getting staff to stalk customers, or if it's just a lull while the new organisation gets its shit together. If the former, I may actually go into Game every once in a while - the hassle I used to get made me steer well clear.
  12. How is taking in lots of games taking the piss? Game surely want people to take loads of games in - why else would they do the "extra £10 for every 3 games" offer? And if they only wanted each person to take in only a small quantity (i.e. not several multiples of 3), they could have set an upper limit on the offer*. As for people offloading low-value games - again, Game didn't have to set a minimum price - they clearly are trying to get hold of as many games as possible, no matter the value of the game. This may or may not be a good plan on Game's part, but I don't think people taking advantage of the offer - using it for the purposes it was apparently set up for - are taking the piss. *Yes, I know the seller could come back later and try to sneak another batch through, or get a friend to trade some of them in, but it would deter the behaviour; "maximum of N per customer" offers are not uncommon.
  13. It's a bit rubbish that the Covenant are in it again (I only care about single player these days). The Covenant have been pretty dull since Halo 2 IMO, and I suspect the only chance we had for decent enemies with some Halo 1-style mystery and menace was to base the game around an entirely new enemy species. We hopefully will see a new enemy, but my alarm bells are ringing that this might be thre return of the unwanted old "friend", a la the Reach-style promise that "the Elites are back!!!" but then you still spend half the game fighting Brutes. I suppose I've learned to expect disappointment in Halo sequels, and this new info isn't actually inspiring me, especially as, once again, the focus is firmly on multi-player, which I long since lost all interest in.
  14. Interesting.... I really struggled with the controls, to the point that I hated the game by the end (and I'm a huge Zelda fan). I had to keep re-calibrating, and I was using the gold one. I've never used a different motion plus, nor do I have any other motion plus games to try it with, so I have no idea whether my remote is faulty, or if the gold remotes are just shit in general. It might explain why I found the controls so erratic (or maybe I'm just shit at motion controls).
  15. I don't think it's a co-incidence that the look and feel of the prequel trilogy was so uninspired compared to the beauty of the original movies; McQuarrie wasn't involved. Pretty much every ship design in the originals was great. There are very few good ones in the prequels, and in many case the variants on classic designs were utterly hideous and missed the point of the originals (those horrendous six-winged X-Wing variants being particularly clueless - "take a classic design and make it better by adding more!!!"). Similar goes for the environments, really - apart from maybe the Naboo palace, and one or two other places, the PT was really uninspired in terms of settings.
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