Saturday, June 24, 2017

Some SJW Chick At IGN Wants First Person Shooters to Lose the Guns

Lucy O'Brien, whoever the fuck she is, apparently wants to get guns out of video games.

This is called having had a boring ass, off-year E3 and they need to come up with something that could be mistaken for content at IGN.  Consequently this is an awesome chance to do some much needed and rather over due virtue signaling on Lucy's part.  Her friends had no doubt been talking.

The American Dream shines a hilarious light on our digital obsession with guns, but it also poses the question: why are we still obsessed? In 2016, is the ubiquity of guns in video games holding the medium back? In light of several recent AAA titles suffering from ‘ludonarrative dissonance’ - an academic term meaning a conflict between a video game's narrative and its gameplay - due to their inclusion of guns, it’s surely a question worth asking.

Honestly it really isn't a question worth asking unless you are girl who is trying to impress her Lefty, Lena Dunham clones buddies with how important her job really is.  "No, really guys, games do matter to, like, stuff and all.  I'll use big words to prove it."

People reacted very positively to The Last of Us: Left Behind; in fact the most common criticism leveled against it was that its bloody climactic shoot-out felt paradoxical to the very human story it had told to that point. This is one instance of the aforementioned ludonarrative dissonance, a term coined by game developer Clint Hocking when describing the tension between two different ways the game encourages the player to act in the 2007 shooter BioShock.

"Ludonarrative...Don't even pretend that's a fucking word.

Also there was no tension at all in the two ways you could play Bioshock. There was just boredom. Once you had been through the game once as a good guy a couple of times you gave evil a shot to unlock the "bad ending."

“To cut straight to the heart of it, Bioshock seems to suffer from a powerful dissonance between what it is about as a game, and what it is about as a story”, wrote Hocking (who also referenced the ‘Citizen Kane of video games’ in his piece, but we won’t prod that bear). “By throwing the narrative and ludic elements of the work into opposition, the game seems to openly mock the player for having believed in the fiction of the game at all.”

So did I.

Bioshock's narrative was just a way of covering up for the fact that it was a run of the mill FPS with limited replay value.  The devs who built Bioshock chose story over game play.

In some ways I can sympathize. As a writer I know just how hard it is to get a story written. It is, if anything, even harder to get a game built right. Now try combining the two and not have the result be pretty weak on one side or the other.

Dr Malcolm Ryan, Senior Lecturer in Game Design and Development at Macquarie University, Sydney...

Them's that can't, teach.

...says that dissonance is most harshly felt in games that present themselves as realistic. If a game places importance on the story, argues Ryan, these moments of dissonance can disrupt the player’s suspension of disbelief. “They can be taken out of the story and made aware of the artificiality of the game. What happens next depends on how invested the player is in the narrative.”

And now we begin to see something just a little bit darker here. When you start hearing about the importance of narrative, you should start sniffing the breeze for a whiff of SJW Entryism.

Many players are happy to chuckle at the conflict, mutter “video games” and blithely carry on, but those keenly invested in the narrative might find it jarring, as if the fourth wall had been accidentally broken during a play. “In particular, if the mechanics require the player to act in ways which make no narrative sense, such players may be reluctant to continue playing,” says Ryan.

Uh-huh. Yeah, I'm smelling entryism. The camel's nose is once again prodding at the edge of the tent.

Come on did you think the Hivemind would give up after we won GammerGate? It can't give up because it's not actually sapient. Think of it as mosquito determined to get through the netting and feast on what it protects. Mosquitoes don't get bored and have no memory of past events. They have nothing better to do than to keep trying. The SJW Hivemind is no different.

Realism is a trend in the current mainstream space, felt most keenly in ‘gritty’ shooters and action games, so it’s no surprise that dissonance can be felt when guns are wielded by protagonists who are painted as realistically vulnerable or empathetic. The recent Watch Dogs 2, for example, gives players the option to mow down people by the dozen with 3D-printed assault weapons, yet its protagonist is presented as easygoing and kind-hearted.

(*eye roll*) Or you could look at Doom 2016 where the hero...(note I did not use the word protagonist)...the HERO. Is a glorious incandescent rage ball, who shakes the foundations of Hell itself. The main difference. One of them is a game I am still playing and the other is Watch Dogs 2.

“The way he’s portrayed in the cutscenes ranting against the misuse of people’s personal information is passionate, and he seems like a fundamentally good person,”

Definition of a "good person" = SJW.

wrote Dan Stapleton in IGN’s review of Watch Dogs 2. “And then the mission begins and he might wipe out a group of private security guards, gang members, or worse, actual San Francisco Police, before going back to being relatively happy-go-lucky in the cutscenes again, unfazed by all the murder and chaos.”

All right I will grant that they have a point here. This is called "bad writing."

In instances like this, guns feel shoe-horned into projects where they aren’t strictly necessary. Watch Dogs 2 is a recent example of a blockbuster game where a wonderfully inventive central mechanic - hacking - has nothing to do with violence, yet violence feels included as a checked tickbox - make sure the player also has the option to kill everyone.

Is it violence she disapproves of?  Or is it guns? I suppose it doesn't matter as she is clearly full of shit either way.

Action games require...and I would award myself the Captain Obvious prize 2017 but it's early yet...ACTION. This isn't 1974. Pong isn't all that amazing anymore. The days of puzzle based narrative games are over unless you are talking about some specialty design house. 

Even when guns make sense within the narrative, there are many instances where the central objective of ‘blast your way through’ dulls its storytelling impact. The Uncharted series has long been mocked - albeit gently - for presenting us with a charismatic, knockabout lead who is also a mass murderer, while nice guy John Marston from Red Dead Redemption seems indifferent to leaving thousands of bodies in his wake in his pursuit to take revenge on just a handful of men.

This is too dull for me to keep making fun of.

There is, I am sure some peroration that she is reaching for but there is nothing new or of interest to be found there.

 I've been seeing these, "won't someone please do something for the children!?!? Screeds since I was kid myself and I remember being annoyed that the good guys weren't allowed to kill the bad guys anymore although the bad guys could get away with killing whoever they liked.

The SJWs aren't going to satisfied until every game is Hatoful Boyfriend.


ghostfromplanetspook said...

Guess she's never heard of Splatoon.

Wolfman at Large said...

I just want somebody to mod Gone Home into horror game it was clearly meant to be.