I nitpick the ones I love

Of course I haven’t been able to stop playing Deus Ex: Human Revolution for long enough to write a decent article here, but I do have time to complain about some small things that irritate me!

Camera shake
I’ve said this before, but shaking the camera is never a good idea — unless the character is being actively shaken, knocked around or hit — because the human body is sophisticated enough that it compensates for such movement automatically. When a person jogs, they don’t feel like they’re disoriented and unable to focus, so why should we feel that way in a first-person game?  It’s bad enough that I really wish Eidos would patch the game and get rid of it; it only subtracts from the experience and the immersion.

Tiny minimap “upgrade”
The minimap, found in the bottom-left corner of the screen, is a decent size when you first start playing the game, and I was perfectly happy with it.  In fact, I was so happy with it that decided to spend upgrade points on it so I could see more!  Little did I know that the upgrade would simply condense more information into the same tiny square, making it nearly impossible to discern what’s actually going on!  Instead of shrinking all the icons and making the minimap frustrating to use, the upgrade should have expanded the size of the minimap on the screen, which has plenty of room to spare.  The HUD in this game is very sleek already, so it wouldn’t be a problem.  Again, this is significant enough that I hope people complain and it gets patched.

Scarlett Johansson syndrome
Average woman in Deus Ex: Human Revolution

Back in the day, it used to be impossible to make a female character look sexy.  There just weren’t enough pixels and polygons to make it work.  But now it looks like every female in Deus Ex is a sister of Scarlett Johansson, and that’s kind of lame.  I mean, let’s be realistic, sexy people are only sexy because there are so many ugly people in the world;  it’s a number’s game, and I believe that ugliness is a part of making a gritty dystopian future feel bad.

Or, if you’re going to pack the entire world full of supermodels anyway, at least try to acknowledge it somehow.  Say that all the ugly people were killed as part of a eugenics movement or something.  I know fat people are harder to animate and there’s a certain satisfaction to successfully creating an attractive model, but this is a bit over the top.

The game is great though, and I think it deserves praise for many different things, especially it’s story.

Exposed: Comic-Con winner hired ninja to kill competitors

It has been revealed that the ‘2011 Konami SanDiego Comic-Com Cosplay Contest’ winner, pictured below, was using a deadly accomplice to weed out the competition — permanently.

Yes, while the disturbing crimes have yet to catch the attention of the media or the authorities, the exclusive SnakeSoup reports that this year’s “best in show” winner hired a fellow ninja to assassinate the competition with a single goal in mind: to capture the coveted Ga-Ko.

Here, the ninja is seen posing for the camera as his partner laughs maniacally in the background. Notice the imitation Ga-Ko statue on the floor to the right.

So while we know about the heinous plot, the identity of the “winner” remains illusive, hidden behind impenetrable face paint.

Could it possibly be the brokenhearted 2010 Comic-Com Cosplay Contest loser that I discovered last year?  The original news piece is archived here, but I have re-produced it for your consideration…

July 24, 2010: Kojima likes these costumes

In an apparent bid to stifle the neverending parade of Naked Snake/Big Boss cosplayers who’ve been clogging up the psychotic Metal Gear cosplaying scene for years, Kojima has given both 1st and 2nd place prizes to these folks:

 See that broken-hearted Naked Snake in the background? Hmm, why don’t I remember Raiden having bare legs before? In any case, it was good enough to catch Kojima’s eye, so there you have it. [Source]

Is it possible that the ninja involved in this murder plot is somehow one of these two winners from last year as well?  How long have these people been in secret cooperation?  Just how deep does this mystery go?  As the bodies continue to pile up, I fear that we will see them again next year…

[SnakeSoup] [MetaGearSolid.org]

Video Games in the Master Plan

Updated March 6, 2014: Added new section and improved some parts

This article deals with the controlled nature of the entertainment industry, pop culture, and the possibility of a conspiracy to turn gaming culture into a shallow, unhealthy and narrow-minded wasteland.

Continue reading

Video game article update

You know what’s surprisingly more difficult than analyzing specific areas of a particular video game franchise?

Writing a short article about real-world economics, politics and the cultural state of affairs in a way that’s accurate, balanced, interesting to read, and yet totally devoid of research and sources for factual information.

E3 2011 Thoughts & Reviews

In this article, I provide a long analysis of some of the latest games and hardware being shown, and why various sequels  have left me wanting more while others inspire dread.

Continue reading

Ravi Singh brags about playing Peace Walker HD

After keeping it a big fat secret from us all, he’s now basking in the glory of his E3 experience and bro status with Ryan Payton.

You can read about it here.

No one likes a bragger, Ravi. Also, thanks. Looks like PWHD (which is what I’m going to call it from now on) is going to be a pretty respectable cash-grab from Kojima Productions after all. Right thumb stick for the win, I say.

As for “MGS3DS”, here’s my initial thoughts: it makes me sick.

MGS3DS is the kind of soulless experiment that illustrates what happens when the Japanese get a taste of success. That’s not racist — that’s just the pattern, they admit it themselves. Oh shut up. Look at how the team developing MGS: Rising decided to not only make the game a prequel but also a new genre, instead of continuing the series properly. That’s game design cowardice. Everyone’s too scared to innovate or take a step in a new direction, wasting perfect opportunities to make new stuff by just remaking the same old stuff for new platforms. Can you imagine a brand new Metal Gear game on the 3DS?

I can. I can imagine it being cool too. My imagination works like that.

The reason why the HD Collection is tolerable is because Peace Walker was begging to be ported to consoles from before it was even released. It really is a major installment in the series, and it deserves a wider audience. Giving MGS2 & 3 to the Xbox crowd feels right as well. But remaking MGS3 for the 3DS? Nobody was asking for that.

EDIT: It may seem contradictory to say that the Rising team is scared to take a step in a new direction while simultaneously complaining that they picked a new genre — a new genre sounds like a new direction, right? — but the issue is a fear of being compared to the “actual” series, or push the story forward in a new direction.

Kojima set up the plot of MGS4 so that it would tie up loose ends and give his team freedom to continue the series with a new story, not so they could shit out a spinoff prequel that hides behind a new genre to avoid being comparable to the major installments.

  • Archives