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Handy's blog

Itís All About Context.
8:17 PM on 10.20.2012
Fanart Flops: Foot Fetish Krang Edition.
3:22 PM on 10.03.2012
I Gots Dibs on Gaige, yo.
3:04 PM on 09.19.2012
50 Cent: Blood on the Sand, Tears in my Eyes.
7:46 AM on 09.04.2012
Adopt an Avatar: giving people Handys at PAX
4:22 PM on 08.27.2012
Dear Industry: I Am Not a Psychopath
6:20 PM on 08.13.2012





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Community Discussion: Blog by Handy | Handy's ProfileDestructoid
Handy's Profile - Destructoid




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About
Welcome to the blog.... you must be bored. anyway im Handy, I'm a student in Ireland and I'm here to talk about whatever may come into my mind....so not much then.

Lets see... Iíve been playing games pretty much my whole life, since my Commodore back in the day to my ps3 now Iíve been hooked. Actually come to think of it I canít remember a time I wasnít playing games. Canít say I have a favourite genre, I like to try a bit of everything, though I will go to town on a good RPG. Iíll have something to fill in this space as soon as my life becomes interesting.

^^^ Seriously, I wrote that like four years ago and still nothing interesting has happened.



Like everyone else on Destructoid Iím at a loss on what to fill this space with so I guess Iíll just catalogue my greatest hits, if you can call a loose collection of lists and borderline pornographic fanart ďgreatest hitsĒ.



Listmania Ė Because liking something isnít as important as liking it in the correct order.

Game plots that are clearly rip-offs: Part two

Gamings Greatest Slinky Invisible Women with Huge Asses

E3 Approaches: The E3 survival guide!

Something about E3: 34 things youíll have to hear soon

Lost? Lonely? Looking for Love?

Gamingís worst legal guardians

Gaming DIY

Valentineís Day, Shmalentineís.....Shmay

Get a new look at the Gaming Salon!

Hatesgiving

The NPC survival guide

Game lessons that donít work in real life



Fanart Flops Ė Because you must suffer.

Fanart Flops: Back by (Un)Popular Demand

Fanart Flops: Eyebleach, I Choose You Edition

Fanart Flops: Octopus Hojo Edition

Fanart Flops: Stop Raping My Childhood Edition

Fanart Flops. (Possibly NSFW)



Wankery Ė The terrible results of when I pretend Iím smart.

Dear Industry: I Am Not a Psychopath

Final Fantasy Versus Itself

Only Human


The culture Gap



Sargasm Ė Because Iím kind of a dick.

Darksiders 2 in a nutshell

The Boy Who Cried Wolf

How Dare You, Capcom

Death to Red Shepard!

How to make a sequel

Why FFXIII is the worst one EVAR!

The Scandalous Scam of Samit Sarkar!

In the name of SCIENCE!!!




Front page Ė When Destructoid has terrible lapses in judgement.


Top 12 Videogame porno parodies (NSFW)

Handyís X-mas X-travaganza begins now!

Game plots that are clearly rip-offs

Comments of the Week: Busst Stop

Comments of the week: George Michael Warfare 3



Donít forget Comments of the Week

Comments of the Week: Tinfoil Hat Edition







Just because.
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Following (44)  

Handy
8:17 PM on 10.20.2012



Iíve always been of the mind that while men and women are (obviously) equal they are not identical, and Iím going to speak really carefully here to get my point across without accidentally offending anyone, what I mean is that speaking on a broad scale men and women tend to be different. If I was born a girl I would be a fundamentally different person than I am now, whether by nature or nurture, I would not be who I am today, either because women are naturally inclined to go certain ways or because my experiences throughout life (school, friends, etc), especially in the developmental stages, would be different.


I always thought this was an important factor for creating a character, men and women arenít interchangeable, but lately Iíve noticed a lot of games challenge this idea, with varying results, and now Iím starting to wonder if maybe itís more in the world building that lets me buy into a characters opinions, gender or sexual orientation. You canít just say character X is a strong woman, we have to know what it means to be a strong woman in the context of their world or it means nothing.


A lot of people believe that playing as female Shepard in Mass Effect is a better experience, but FemShep and MaleShep are exactly the same character. Same mo-cap, same combat abilities, same dialogue (barring romance), so what is it that makes FemShep better in some peopleís eyes? Being female puts Shepardís character in a completely different context.




Playing as a girl in Persona 3 can be a very different experience, playing as a girl in Mass Effect is nearly identical to a male. But both pull it off well in different ways.


Firstly, the context of the world. Part of the reason Bioware was able to pull off a protagonist that could be either gender so well is because Mass Effect is set in the future, itís believable to assume that by this point humanity has achieved true gender equality, everybody treats Shepard the same no matter if theyíre a man or woman, and no one bats an eyelid over their commander being a woman. Put this in contrast with something like Dragon Age where somehow humanity has overcome sexism, racism and homophobia which I find jarring in a medieval world where everybody still discriminates against elves or mages or what have you.


Then thereís the context of the characters actions. Even though male and female Shepard do exactly the same things, it says something different about the character depending on their gender. For example, in Mass Effect 2 thereís a renegade option to headbutt a Krogan to shut him up and establish dominance, when MaleShep does this (aside from being hilarious) it says ďHa, Shepard is so alpha that he headbutted a Krogan!Ē, but seeing FemShep loaf a Krogan says something completely different. To be honest, I donít know what that something is, but itís different and itís interesting and I like it. Or hell, maybe it does say the exact same thing as MaleShep, but then itís still different, itís a member of the ďfairer sexĒ, and a fairer species no less, establishing herself as the alpha male of these hulking space monsters.





It always surprised me to hear the Metal Gear games praised for Vamp being bisexual, I thought he was a rather poor representation, mincing around the battlefield, licking his knives, and just generally being a creeper, I though he fit perfectly into the trope of the Depraved Bisexual. But then I remembered, Vamp was originally intended to be a woman, but when a boss with water based powers was scrapped and Fortune was introduced, Vamp was changed to a man. Aside from gender and inheriting the now defunct bossesí water abilities nothing else changed, including his relationship with Scott Dolph.




I wonder, would I have found Vamp as offensive if he remained a woman? Dancing around, licking blood off her lips and acting like the classic sexually charged vampire, you know, everything Vamp still does as a man? Was it my own perceptions or eagerness to hop on my high horse? Or should changing a characters gender mean more than swapping out their character model and voice actor. Honestly, I donít have an answer to that question, I donít know if there is an answer to that question, at best all I can say is judge it on a case by case basis.


While weíre on sexual orientation, Fallout: New Vegas also included lots of gay characters, including two of your possible followers. As characters, I thought they were great, to have gay characters whose entire being isnít based around their sexuality was refreshing, it was just a part of the whole. But I find it impossible to believe how nonchalant they were about it, they live in a fairly uncivilised post-apocalyptic land, and if that wasnít bad enough itís in the ruins of a society based on Fifties values. The only way this world could be worse for gay people is if the super mutants were religious fundamentalists.




And then thereís the logical inconsistencies.


I get what the creators were trying to do, just like with Dragon Age, the developers were trying to allow for more player choice and to be as inclusive as possible, thatís great, I totally encourage that, but the worlds these games take place in arenít that inclusive. Thedas and The Wasteland are so harsh and discriminatory that itís jarring when characters drop the fact that theyíre gay so casually. You canít just transplant our modern values into these bleak and often malicious settings, not without some kind of justification at least, have someone say that differences like that stopped mattering once the bombs fell, that people kill each other for food, not whether they like boys or girls.


Iím not trying to say that the default for any fictional world is that homophobia should be present or assumed until we learn otherwise, maybe these things were just never an issue in these worlds, but the sad fact is that these issues do exist in our world, and the player will still notice them.


In Borderlands 2 people offhandedly talk about same-sex spouses and exes all the time and I can buy it because that game is off the wall and doesnít take itself so seriously, and no, Iím not saying homosexuality isnít serious and shouldnít be portrayed that way, just that the setting isnít as heavy as the other examples. Even though Pandora is basically Planet Texas, because Borderlands 2 is so flippant about everything it doesnít break my suspension of disbelief when Sir Hammerlock mentions his ex boyfriend or when Axton comments on Salvadorís well toned ass. Kanji in Persona 4 is probably the most realistic take on the subject but that could, and has, fill an entire blog on its own.




Playing Uncharted as Doughnut Drake completely changes the context of why everything collapses under his weight and makes the game a story about Drakeís struggle with obesity.


We need to understand how these worlds work in relation to ours, if being gay or a strong woman isnít a big deal in your world then you need to paradoxically give us a nudge and wink to let us know itís not a big deal. You need to give us context, or let the player create their own. Iíve gone over this blog again and again and Iím still afraid people may misinterpret it so let me just be clear, Iím all for more diversity in games, I want them to be more inclusive, Iím just saying that giving the player more freedom can be a double-edged sword, doing so can sometimes lead to incongruity with the setting, and other times it can lead to us creating our own story, and that Iíd like to see more of the latter and less of the former.
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Welcome to Fanart Flops, the horrifying videogame fanart feature that did it first, Something Awful and Kotaku .......even though thereís probably a dozen people who did it before me.

As always, for those of you who donít know (run, run away now!), Fanart Flops is not a collection of bad fanart, most artists featured here are actually quite talented, but unfortunately insane. Fanart Flops are the most bizarre and confusing pictures to be found on the internet, sometimes itís a strange idea or concept, sometimes there is some reasoning behind it but weíre seeing it out of context, and sometimes itís just ďoffĒ for lack of a better term.

Iím going to forgo peppering shitty jokes around every picture this time, I always felt I needed to contribute more than just uploading pictures for these blogs, but thatís because you donít see the hours I spend searching for fanart that meets the ridiculously specific rules Iíve set myself (some of which I break this time around), and also because I have to suffer the really nasty stuff I canít post here.

So check your sanity at the door, you wonít need it where weíre going.












Is it being pumped in or sucked out? Would either answer make you feel better?














































In fairness, they should have expected this sort of thing when they sexualised a gorilla.


























See, this is the thing about Fanart Flops, I know this is referencing something, I just have no idea what and itís hilarious out of context.
































Gotta go fast?


























Okay, this one is definitely intentional, but ďKrogan KokĒ makes me laugh so hard I had to include it. That and Iíve see a lot of Mass Effect alien cocks in my search for Fanart Flops and this is probably the only one I could get away with posting.














It took me a while to get this one, then I did and began to hate the world in a whole new way.



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Handy
3:04 PM on 09.19.2012

Some people might think itís stupid to stake a claim on a character we know next to nothing about and wonít get to use for a month, but I consider it prudent, because Gaige is most definitely the best character by far, so good Gearbox decided they could get filthy rich be releasing her as DLC, and by invoking the right of dibs I retain sole use of her until further notice.

ďBut HandyĒ I hear you ask, ďstop doing push ups and tell us why sheís so great!Ē. Well...99...if you...100...insist.





She has sex with robots probably.

Iím assuming thatís what a Mechromancer does, romances mechs. Gaige canít be satisfied by a mere human, to fulfil her insatiable appetite it takes pistons and gears and motors and chassis and a complicated system of pulleys and a lot of motor oil, and that is something we have in common.

She has a robot arm.

Not only does it make all reload animations 37% cooler but thereís a harrowing tale behind the mechanical limb that fills out Gaigeís inspiring backstory. Gaige lost her arm in a tragic accident that may or may not have involved robot-sex, but instead of overcoming her disability like those pussys at the Paralympics she built herself a robot arm, but the robot arm was too well built. Every time Gaige tried to take a drink or pick up the phone it would shatter in her mighty hand, and she would scream to the heavens, no longer able to finish her Dr. Pepper. Cursed by her own genius and unable to hold down her job as a handshake envoy to the germaphobic she moved to Pandora to escape people drawing parallels between her and Dr. Claw from Inspector Gadget. All of this is cannon, Anthony Burch told me.





She has a big fuck-off robot.

Axton has a turret, which is almost like a robot but much, much lamer, Maya need to ask enemies to be polite and hold still so she can shoot them, the only advantage to Zer0ís ability is that we donít have to look at his stupid non-face, and Salvador needs to work himself into a frenzy to use both hands for some reason. Gaige, on the other robotic hand, need only call on her faithful friend D374-TP, or Deathtrap, to decimate the hoards of Pandora. Who needs co-op partners when you have a robot buddy to take on the wastes with you. Not Gaige, thatís who.

Sheís a strong female role model

Unlike that trollop Maya, Gaige is a true shining beacon for women in gaming. While Maya pretends to be strong and confident in herself, her looks betray her attitude, only wearing a swimsuit and pants, making sure to pull them down just enough on one side so we all know it, with her glowing blue tramp-stamp and lipstick that belongs in a B-movie vision of the future where people add the prefix ďcyber-ď to everything.





But Gaige likes to keep it casual, a simple skirt and hoodie, she doesnít even care about that plaster on her face, maybe sheíll take down Handsom Jackís empire, maybe sheíll laze around the house on Sunday, who knows. Topping it off with informal twin tails and thigh-high stripped stockings, not because theyíre sexy, but because they remind her of her favourite movie Ė Beetlejuice. Again, all cannon. Ask Anthony Burch if you donít believe me.
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ďThat bitch took my skull.Ē Ė 50 Cent, poet laureate.

50 Cent: Blood on the Sand is a deeply personal journey, both for the player and 50 Cent himself, putting to light some harsh truths about gangster culture, videogames as an interactive storytelling medium, the war in Iraq, and the human condition. Some may dismiss it as 50 Centís personal million dollar wank fantasy, thinking it can only be enjoyed on an ironic level or by those emotionally damaged enough to actually aspire to be 50 Cent, but those people are philistines, too close-minded to appreciate the tale of subtle social commentary and deep political intrigue that is 50 Cent: Blood on the Sand.





Our journey begins in Iraq an unnamed Middle Eastern country as Fiddy finishes up a concert in what must be the only intact structure in the entire game. Literally one second after finishing his set our hero drops the mic and heads straight backstage to collect his money like a true artist, when told the promoter doesnít have ten million dollars on hand 50 responds by kicking down his door and pointing a shotgun in his face, luckily the promoter has a priceless diamond encrusted skull for some reason, and agrees to give it to 50 in exchange for not murdering him, but mostly as payment for the concert, because really, 50ís music is worth about as much as a priceless historical artefact.

Hell, his music is a priceless historical artefact.


Itís a clever parody of the persona that people project onto Fiddy as a heartless, money obsessed thug, who cares more for getting paid than putting on a good show for his fans, and the perceived culture of violence in gangster rap as he is put under peer pressure by his friends in G-unit to ďwaste this fuckerĒ in regards to their promoter. Fiddy is placed in a moral dilemma as he must choose between the death of a man or risk losing the respect of DJ Whoo Kid.

Afterward we are treated to a deep philosophical debate between 50 and the promoter about who has the best Gangsters, New York or NotIraq, 50 remains adamant in his conviction that New York is indeed a tougher place to live, I assume this is 50 Centís masterful use of irony at play, because this conversation is literally taking place in an armoured convoy in a bombed out war zone. But before this battle of wits can be decided their convoy is ambushed and the skull is stolen by a mysterious woman referred to only as ďBitchĒ, which Iím sure is a commentary on the treatment of women in the world of gangster rap.



ďWhereís mah skull, bitch?Ē Ė 50 Cent, role model.



And so we take control of 50 and begin our quest of fighting terrorists through the Middle East to retrieve a diamond covered skull. The gameplay is a beautiful parody of modern shooters, a completely bland third person shooter, occasional boring forced driving sections, every boss fight is a helicopter, and the brownest environments of any game ever, the ground is brown, the sky is brown, every building is brown, this game has more brown than Poo Mountain in Conkerís Bad Fur Day. With every kill a meter will slowly decrease, and if you can kill again before it empties the meter will refill and youíll be given a multiplier for bonus points.





Yes, 50 Cent: Blood on the Sand reintroduces killing for points to gaming. Itís an exploration of the effect violent media has had on society, seeing the results in a world were violence has become trivialised. After all, thereís no way 50 Cent, a former victim of gun violence, would ever star in a game that glorifies it, that would just be profoundly moronic.



ĒYouíre one crazy bitch, you know that?Ē Ė 50 Cent, lyricist of the streets.



Soon, 50 meets an arms dealer who gives him one piece of sage advice that he should adhere to: ďTrust no oneĒ, 50 takes this advice to heart by not trusting the arms dealer which paradoxically means he will trust every person he meets in the game despite every single one of them turning on him. 50 then goes to a strip club to find out the whereabouts of the skull, it is here that 50 meets his greatest ethical challenge yet. After our hero pushes a stripper and asks ďwhereís your boss, bitch?Ē he comes face to face with the strip club owner, Eddie, who is also his biggest fan.

50 must now confront the consequences of what he has encouraged through his music. This man dresses and acts like 50, he has modelled his lifestyle on his music videos, Fiddy looks around at what he has created by proxy, life is hard enough for a woman in this country, ravaged by war and religious fundamentalism, and now, thanks to him, the few that remain are being exploited for sex. 50 has a crisis of conscience, should he continue projecting his gangster image? Or must he give up the excessive lifestyle he has become accustomed to in order to restore his moral integrity? Can he help these women seek a better life? Should he take Eddie under his wing and teach him the true values of life, respect and what it means to be a musician as he tries to redeem the strip club owner, and perhaps, himself?

Spoiler: Later on he blows up a bus full of strippers.


A little more on gameplay. Scattered throughout the levels are crates full of bling 50 must collect if you want to earn medals, these crates full of diamond rings and gold dogtags are a stark juxtaposition to the meagre surroundings, itís a commentary on the forced integration of western decadence in the Middle East. Accompanying you in each mission is an interchangeable member of G-unit, who randomly and without explanation swap places between missions and never appear in cutscenes, perhaps a metaphor for the other members feelings of resentment as they are overshadowed by Fiddy. And of course the swear button, which is necessary for to you earn bonus points, showing us, the player, how it must feel to have to force profanity into you works to be successful.





Next 50 is approached by a mercenary group that tried to kill him, 50 agrees to help them steal some gold so long as 50 getís half, they rob the gold, killing two innocent men, the mercenary leader betrays him, helicopter boss fight. 50 eventually catches up with Bitch, and kills her Boss in a helicopter boss fight. Bitch then reveals that a man named Wilder has the skull and that heís holding Bitchís family hostage, then they kiss for some reason, no doubt lamp shading forced romantic subplots in games.



ĒGimmie my skull, bitchĒ Ė 50 Cent, artist who preformed for the illustrious Gaddafi family.



Several helicopter boss fights later Fiddy finds Wilder and we learn that the concert promoter is in cahoots with him. Now, normally this would raise a few questions in most games. Why did Wilder rob the promoter if he planed to pay him off? Why didnít he just take the skull? Why did he bother paying off the promoter, who canít do shit, instead of just paying 50 for the gig? Why give 50 the skull in the first place if you were just going to rob it off him? Why create this convoluted series of event to entangle 50 Cent in this at all? Especially when all it does is motivate him to kill all your men because you stole something you already own? Did 50 just forget about all that gold from three hours ago? He just kind of walked off and left it there. Luckily the writers of Blood on the Sand sidestep these issues by never noticing them.

And it is at this point that Fiddy must kill the promoter and fight his way through Wilders henchmen, but just when the skull is within his grasp, he is faced with a tough moral choice.

Yes, you read that right, 50 Cent: Blood on the Sand has a moral choice.

50 finds a shortcut to Wilder but Bitch, who is en route to save her family, informs him that unlocking the door will activate the security, unlocking all the doors and swamping her with enemies. And so the player is faced with a harrowing decision, unlock the door: sacrificing Bitch and her family, or take the long way around, which means playing 50 Cent: Blood on the Sand for another fifteen minutes.

The game then splits in two wildly different directions as taking the shortcut leads to Bitch betraying you, but going the long way around leads to Bitch betraying you....over the phone. Showing us how choice in a game never really matters as the story always ends up hitting the same notes anyway. One last helicopter boss fight later and Fiddy has finally gotten his coveted diamond skull back, after killing hundreds of people, destroying the remaining infrastructure of a war torn city and making off with the broken countryís last remaining piece of wealth that he has no claim to, what does he do with this relic of immeasurable fortune?




Totally worth it.


I could go on about how amazing this game is. About how the city is completely barren except for the enemies, meaning they were the ones at his concert. About the subtle parody of rapper narcissism by having a game about 50 Cent, were all the music is 50 Cent, and 50 Cent goes around collecting 50 Cent posters. About the stellar voice acting, where 50 actually sounds like he has a mouth full of marbles and never emotes, or the astonishing face capture technology, which truly encapsulates the half inflated balloon filled with meat that is Fiddyís face. But really, this is a game that must be experienced firsthand, then youíll understand why ďBitch took mah skullĒ is the ďWould you kindlyĒ of 2009.
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Well, this place has been all about the community spirit lately hasnít it? And you know one of the loveliest community traditions Dtoid members carry out every year? Thatís right, avatar adoption! The wonderful act of Dtoiders going to PAX who take the avatars of the less fortunate members who canít make the trip for one reason or another. Iíve been lucky enough to have had two foster parents take me on the trip in the last two years, Elsa and Corduroy Turtle, and both were kind enough to chronicle my avatarís adventures so I could live vicariously through them.

So I decided that this year I would forgo trying to convince you with an assortment of blatant lies and would instead show you what my avatar has gotten up to, what you can expect, and what kind of people you can meet if youíre willing to give a out a Handy on the sly.

And also make as many handjob jokes as possible.




Jim sterling was quite pleased when he received a Handy in the dead of night.




But Occamís Electric Toothbrush got a Handy in the middle of the street in broad daylight!




Max Scoville will pay good money for a quick Handy.




Tara Long got a Handy when she was least expecting it.




Danny Baranowsky, composer for Super Meat Boy and Binding of Isaac, was so flexible he could lick the Handy he was receiving.




Derek Yu, creator of Spelunky, got a well earned Handy to relieve his stress.




Even Renegade FemShep got a Handy. See? Bioware support all relationship types.




Carmine sympathizers were giving out free Handys to support their cause.




While it should be mechanically impossible for Juri to receive a Handy, Iíve seen plenty of Street Fighter fan art that tells me otherwise.




Mr Andy Dixon Wario got himself a Handy too.




Johnny Cage got a Handy right in the middle of the supermarket, that canít be good for hygienic standards.




Mr Destructoid can get a Handy whenever he wants.




Hamza got a HandyÖ..




...Two years in a row! Could you get me that hat-trick?




The cast of Mega64 all got Handys, the new guy with the dreadlocks did not approve.




All Dtoiders at the meet ups got a Handy under the table.




Of course Neiro got a Handy.




And finally, a picture of Corduroy Turtle giving Ken Levine a Handy.



So what do you say? Would you like to adopt my avatar and give everyone you meet a PAX a Handy? Giving out Handys left and right till your hands are covered in sticky white fluid, by which I mean the kind found at those hygienic hand gel stations I assume they have to help stop the spread of germs at PAX.

Huge thanks again to Corduroy and Elsa for taking all these pictures.

Disclaimer: If you adopt my avatar I hold you under no obligation to take pictures with gaming celebrities or Destructoid staff members or to do anything else if you donít feel like itÖÖÖ..though Elsa did send me some swagÖ..just sayiní.
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(Back to blogging! Itís been far too long, after another stint in the hospital and some minor surgery Iím finally feeling well enough to start writing again, if all goes well I can keep it up semi-regularly again.)

(Iím sure youíre thrilled)


Hey games industry, how ya been? Itís been a while, havenít seen you around lately, the summer lull I guess. Listen thereís something I wanted to talk to you about, the way youíve been acting lately is kind of...concerning. I hear youíve been coming home later and later these nights, youíre covered in cuts and bruises, youíre starting random fights, in the face of violence you donít seem scared or aggressive anymore, youíre just nonchalant about it, itís getting kind of creepy. Also, Iím going to stop talking to you like youíre a person now, because thatís also getting kind of creepy, and this is starting to sound like an abusive relationship break up blog.

So yeah, violence, arguably a cornerstone of gaming, after all most games are about overcoming obstacles to achieve a goal, and killing things is a really fun obstacle to overcome, so whatís the problem? Well, in my humble-as-a-cottage-with-self-esteem-issues opinion, the depiction of violence has gotten way out of hand as of late, to the point of stupidity actually, half the trailers out there seem to follow the same distinct and disappointing pattern. We start with a slow build up, setting the tone, building tension and interest, probably lots of CG, things are going well, then the gameplay footage kicks in, and heads start exploding, and people get impaled in slow motion, and tomahawks meet faces, Iím not really sure what happens after that because my eyes tend to roll back so far I can actually see my brain cells dying, but all I can recall before I pass out is the faint whisper of dubstep in my ear. The point is, ultraviolence has become a scarily commonplace thing in gaming.



I really hate to use that word, ďultraviolenceĒ is the kind of sensationalist term reserved by the Daily Mail to depict Marioís treatment of turtles, but there really is no other suitable phrase. This isnít a realistic portrayal of violence, Iíd encourage that, these are games that, for lack of a better term, luxuriate in it, they relish in their own gratuitous sadism, they think itís cool, and whatís worse, they think we think itís cool. Even the more tame games still come across as disturbing when compared to other media, shoot a guy in any generic FPS these days and the wound explodes with a giant red glob like he was a suicide bomber on a practice run with jam jars strapped to his chest, giant geysers of blood erupt from bullet holes, in the world of gaming blood meeting metal reacts in the same way as Coca-Cola and Polos, God forbid you shoot someone in the head, lest the game stop everything , go into slow motion, change camera angles, and show us in detail what a cranium being penetrated looks like as a reward for our accuracy.

It just cheapens everything, it cheapens the experience, it cheapens our actions, it cheapens death, and it cheapens their profit margins because the game gets rated higher and reaches a smaller audience. Who does it help? It cheapens gaming, just imagine for a second that you know nothing of games, itís just not your thing, you hear about the hottest new game everybodyís playing and the first picture you see is this....


Judging from his face I guess weíre both supposed to be getting off on this.

This is where the myth of games making people violent comes from, of course we all know its rubbish and games donít affect peopleís behaviour, but if you look at it from an outside perspective can you really blame them for coming to that conclusion? Itís really easy to connect those dots. Weíve become desensitized to violence in games, we do so much fucked up shit, I just killed a priest and ate him in Skyrim, and that gameís somewhat subdued with the violence. Have you seen footage of Dishonoured? For a game that promises a pacifist playthrough they sure love stabbing people in the face. From what I played of Condemned 2 itís a game dedicated to caving in the heads of homeless people with blunt objects. Dead Space replaced actual horror with gore porn. At one point in God of War 3 I thumbed in a manís eyeballs!



This is what weíve come to, slow-mo x-ray cross sections of Nazis getting shot in the balls.
Also the DLC is historically inaccurate as Hitler only had one testicle.

Iím not against ultraviolence in and of itself, but games like Mortal Kombat and Gears of War can only get away with going that far because thereís a level of self awareness there, they know theyíre being superfluous and over the top, camp even. But a game canít take itself seriously if they go that far, Prototype 2 was filled with relentless gore, the secret government wetworks organisation was full of rednecks who constantly talked about enjoying civilian massacres and slipped ďfuckiníĒ into every sentence, the game is desperate to look mature and comes across like it was written by a fourteen year old for all its effort. The only good line in the entire game involves a threat to ďsoul fuckĒ someone and thatís only good because itís the one time the game acknowledges how thoroughly horrible your actions are.



All the Jonny Cash in the world canít make this not stupid

Iíll admit I laughed the first time I shot someone in Fallout and his head flew off and rolled down a hill, but after the four hundredth time it gets old, you phase it out, and when someone walks in and sees my non-reaction to it I look mental. Graham Linehan once said that he vastly prefers playing Driver to GTA because of the simple fact that in Driver pedestrians will always jump out of the way, not only does it evoke the feel of seventies cop shows and movies, reinforcing the games themes and aesthetics, but itís guilt free. Whereas getting from A to B in GTA involves watching peopleís heads thunk of my windshield in all the bonecracking glory of the Euphoria engine, then Niko Bellic complains about the ďcrazy AmericansĒ before agreeing to kill the boyfriend of a mob bossí daughter because he doesnít like him, for fifty dollars. Itís a bit jarring.



So please Games Industry, stop treating me like a psychopath, I enjoy a good power fantasy as much as the next guy, but stop making me feel like a total bastard. Youíre embarrassing yourself, all the blood and guts comes across as desperate pandering, the videogame equivalent of a backwards cap and sunglasses, youíre better than this, weíre better than this, give us and yourself a little credit, show some class and tone it down a bit.

Except for the Tomb Raider reboot, because I like to imagine that all the knocks Lara gets in the prequel is setting up why she hates nature so much and spent the last ten games shooting endangered species.
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