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The Phantom Pain. Wow. This is the kind of surprise that makes it worth sticking through the VGA's bullshit.

By now everyone has heard of the possible connection between the Metal Gear series and TPP. The physical similarities between TPP's unknown protagonist and Snake. The recurring themes white Lilly petals, the amputation of the left arm, the similarities between the protagonists inability to walk and the gruelling microwave scene from MGS4. The mysterious Moby Dick Studios and their lead Joakim Mogren, a cheeky anagram of "Kojima." A few brief glimpses of figures who may or may not resemble MGS series characters like Volgin and Psycho Mantis. It was a mystery that had all the tantalizing intrigue you could ask for.

Then Kyle Cooper, the guy who made the memorable title sequences for MGS2 and 3 was seen wearing a fucking TPP T-shirt. Well, guess that settles that. Thanks for taking all the air out of that fun-balloon.

So TPP is in all likelihood an MGS game. Whether it is just another angle on the previously announced Ground Zeros, a sub-sequence set inside of it, or another title all together is unknown, but all signs point to it being connected to the MGS franchise in some way.

I know it won't be, but I would love for The Phantom Pain to be some kind of cross over between MGS and Silent Hill. A purgatorial look back for Naked Snake (AKA Big Boss) and all the pain he's caused and mistakes he's made. While the MGS series has always dabbled in a bit of the super natural, TPP looks like its diving right in, capturing an aura of menace and horror more befitting of Konami's other classic franchise. I've always said SH works best as a kind of allegory for personal trauma and regret, and who has more of both than good old Daddy Snake? It would certainly be a fresh take on both of those series.


- Just sayin' Silent Hill games like to start with car crashes.

Also, just as a personal bone of contention, why is nobody repping The Sorrow? Everyone is so quick to say the ghostly figure at the end of the trailer is Psycho Mantis, they all seemed to have forgotten about MGS3's ACTUAL GHOST. The Sorrow was fucking cool and his "boss fight" sequence was one of the most imaginative and upsetting moments in gaming history. Damn fools better recognize.

Of course, I'm burying the lede here. We all know it was the Dark Souls II trailer that really jump started my cold and unfeeling heart.



Lets see, does it meet all my Dark Souls standards -

Doomed nameless protagonist? - check
Super scary looking enemies? check
Super scary looking places? check
Creepy masks? - check

Yup, preordering now.

People have been talking about what they want from the next Dark Souls, and it is kind of a tricky subject for me, because what I want most of all is to be surprised again. One of the things that made Dark Souls so perfect for me was that I never knew what to expect. Every new area carried a sense of exploration, every new enemy was exhilarating and frightening. If DkSII can feature locations as inspiring/terrifying as Anor Londo and the Tomb of Giants, and bosses as thrilling as Smough and Ornstein, but new and different, I'll be happy. Sure, no problem. Take one of the most imaginative and interesting worlds in a game and now make something totally different but just as good not demanding at all.



Really, the only features I want that I can put my finger on (sad as it may seem) are iterative improvements. More consistent net code. Covenants/invasions to work with more predictability/success. Better PvP balance from the start. Even more viable weapons/builds. Fairly hum drum ideas. Perhaps my imagination is too limited, or maybe I just don't want to set unrealistic expectations or dreams for DkSII.

* - No Chris, don't do it! Taking on every Elder Scroll game is a quest too grand to burden! Best of luck man.

* - Ever want to relive or experience Baldur's Gate for the first time? Then you need to take a look at Oroku Saki's exhaustive list of patches and mods to make your retro-dungeon crawl as pleasant as possible.

* - Voltech looks back on a rough year in his gaming world, but don't worry, he pulls out of a depressing nosedive by focusing on the positive! Hopefully 2013 sees more XCOMs and less SFxTs.

A - Rathowreck passionately wants to see the day that games will be respected and celebrated. But considering that even us ethusiasts knee deep in the industry still spend a lot of time bickering about what is and isn't a game or who is and isn't a gamer, I don't see this utopia happening any time soon.

A - Sometimes its hard to go back to the classics, no matter how celebrated they may be.

A - Jedevlin loves him some Walking Dead, but thinks all the people calling it ground breaking are talking out of their ass.

T - Man, it bums me out to think that AC3 only "gets good" around 5 hours or so into the game, several chapters deep. Naveenwf shares his ups and downs with the game.

F - Two brother's play Harvest Moon.

L - I laughed, I cried, I came. Thanks Justin.

C - Ack. Really? I feel like I should be wearing a turtle neck and ironic chain wallet while reading this.

R - I don't want to be "that guy", but it seems to me ADHD is over diagnosed as a kind of catch all for any kind of disruptive behaviour. Maybe Skid Row Trash's nephew just has some boring fucking teachers.




-Wrenchfarm

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