"Where do dreams end and reality begin? Videogames, I suppose."- Gainax, FLCL Vol. 1
"The beach, the trees, even the clouds in the sky... everything is build from little tiny pieces of stuff. Just like in a Gameboy game... a nice tight little world... and all its inhabitants... made out of little building blocks... Why can't these little pixels be the building blocks for love..? For loss... for understanding"- James Kochalka, Reinventing Everything part 1
"I wonder if James Kolchalka has played Mother 3 yet?" Jonathan Holmes
I had to buy the latest issue of Game Informer. It has a picture of Chad in it. I didn't have a choice. Even still, I had hopes that Chad wouldn't be the only thing about the magazine worth buying. Game Informer has sucked for a long time, but I had reason to think that it had gotten better (meaning, Nick told me that the magazine wasn't that bad anymore). Sorry Nick, I couldn't agree less. At this point, I'd say that Game Informer is even worse than GamePro, a magazine that's gotten a lot better over the years, but is still nowhere near as good as Play or the now-dead EGM.
I'm not going to be able to fit everything I hate about the latest issue of Game Informer into one blog, but here goes an attempt to at least touch on a few of the lowest points.
For starters, this issue's "Hardcore Gamer's Guide to the Wii" is total crap. There is absolutely no indication of what "hardcore" means in this case. The list includes extremely kid friendly games like Boom Blox and Mario Kart Wii, as well as M rated games like Resident Evil 4: Wii Edition, so I'm guessing that in this article, "hardcore" just means "good"."
So, this is supposed to be a list of all the "good games" on the Wii.
This is a list that does not include Blast Works, Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn, Battalion Wars 2, de Blob, Trauma Center: New Blood, Tiger Woods 09, or Wario Land: Shake it.
This list does include Tomb Raider: Underworld.
This list sucks.
Maybe Game Informer just doesn't have any editors who understand what the Wii and it's game library. That would be fine, if the magazine changed it's name to "PS3/360 Informer", but for a publication that claims to cover games on all consoles to be this clueless (at best) or biased (at worst) towards the most popular new home console on the planet is just inexcusable.
Remember, this is the magazine that gave No More Heroes a 6.5 largely because of the game's "disturbing sexual and violent content", but they made GTAIV their game GOTY. Can you get any more hypocritical and biased than that?
Ok, this sucker is already much longer than I planned for it to be, so I'm going to do the rest in bullet points.
* The review of Rygar Wii is total shit. I don't necessarily disagree with their score, but the writing and reasoning displayed in the review is embarrassingly bad. More or less, the reviewers say "Rygar was a an Ok game when it came out on the PS2, but it sucks compared to God of War so you should buy that instead".
To say the game is bad just because it's not as good as some game that you like more is the definition of shitty reviewing. Can you imagine that ever happening in a book review or a film review? Worse, what the hell makes them assume that the reader of the review even owns a PS2? Rygar Wii is a port of Rygar PS2; it's a game made specifically for people who don't own a PS2 but do own a Wii. The last thing the writer should assume is that the person reading their review or Rygar Wii owns a PS2.
Ok, I'm taking too long again. Moving on.
* In their "Top 10 Dorks of 2008&" list, they place "The Rapper" instrument from Wii Music at #1 and Travis Touchdown from No More Heroes at #4, and Opoona from Opoona at #8.
What the fuck?
First, the rapper isn't a character, it's a "musical instrument" that supposed to make fun of rap cliches. To say that he/she/it is a "dork" is totally missing the point. In the same paragraph, Game Informer also says that Wii Music is one of the years worst games, and says that Wii Music isn't a game at all. You can't have it both ways, ya douche bags. If Wii Music isn't a game, then why do you keep bringing it up? Speaking of missing the point, in their criticism of Travis Touchdown, Game Informer rags on Travis for swinging a store bough light saber, having trouble holding down a job, and using the toilet.
Then they go on to say, and I quote, "If you identify with this loser, you have problems". Woah. Travis Touchdown is an avid fan of anime, porn and videogames. He's a horny single male who is simultaneously struggling to make ends meet and to get a hot girl to make out with him. Basically, Travis is your average 13-24 year old male who identities as a gamer. In insulting Travis, Game Informer insults at least 90% percent of it's readers.
I guess is makes sense that Game Informer would loathe a videogame character who actually resembles a videogame player, because in the same magazine there is an article criticizing the 360 Avatars they say "Geeks like us feel self-loathing, but Xbox 360's avatars take the self-hate to a whole new level".
Fuck you, Game Informer. If you hate gamers so much, why do you write for a game magazine? I'm not self loathing, and if I were, I'd be rethinking my job as a gaming journalist. Maybe you guys should do some rethinking yourselves.
And Oppona is just a cute little orphan who kills monsters. Picking on him is like killing a mockingbird.
Fuck you, mockingbird killers.
* In their "Connect Calendar" section, the magazine makes a point to say that the audience for the upcoming film Coraline "will be packed with the worst kind of nerds; comic fans that revere Neil Gaiman as a god, think that stop-motion is better than CG, and can recite the lyrics to every They Might Be Giants song".
Actually Game Informer, the worst kind of "nerd" is the kind of self loathing douche bag "nerd" that tries to mock other kinds of "nerds"; for being "nerdy"; in the wrong ways.
That's Game Informer; the worst kind of nerds.
I'm going to wrap this up now before this gets any longer, but in closing I'd just like to say that there are many other things that bother me about the writers of Game Informer magazine. They pretty much symbolizes everything I don't like about gaming culture. The magazine does have one good editor, a guy named Jeff, but he doesn't even seem to be on the staff rolls. Other than his review of Retro Gaming Challange, everything in the Singularity issue of Game Informer magazine pretty much sucks.
Except, of course, for that photo of Chad.
It's ironic that a photo of the one of the most open-minded, intelligent, thoughtful game journalists I know, a man who is truly in love with gaming as a medium, would end up appearing in a magazine that lacks all of those positive attributes. Game Informer needs to not only have pictures of Chad in their magazine, they need to hire editors who think like Chad. Otherwise, I don't expect they'll be around too much longer.