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Community Discussion: Blog by Tarvu | 2010 Sucked? Video gaming never sucks. Also cocks.Destructoid
2010 Sucked? Video gaming never sucks. Also cocks. - Destructoid




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About
Ducks live on me.



Sometimes they make me do things.

UK Dtoider in the Midlands, I spend too much time ignoring Steamtoid, and used to spend too little time "organizing" EUFNF on the forums and c-blogs. I have a mighty underused PC, an Xbox 360 (slim), a PS2 (also slim) and a DSi (slim... I guess?) Sometimes I play games on them.

Currently a final year Media Production (BSc, science bitches!) Student, but I spend most of my time doing Student media instead. On here.

I had a c-blog promoted. For me, it was a Monday.


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Conveniently this occurred to me today rather than tomorrow. Also, this is my first attempt at a non-EUFNF-or-other-form-of-idiocy blog, so beat this shit out of it. I abuse commas and ramble.

Most people took their Monthly musing as a chance to unload on one game that particularly blighted their year in gaming. Fair enough, I won't do that. I'm not going to claim that any aspect of video gaming has made 2010 any less fun for me, because that would be utter bollocks. I would like to say no game in particular has overshadowed 2010 for me, however one game has been with me since it got a price reduction in the new year and is indicative of the theme for my monthly musing. Battlefield 1943 may not be hugely popular now it has been out for 18 months without sign of a PC release, and with the release of two Call of Duty games and another multiplayer Battlefield title since it is understandable, but one single aspect of the gameplay appealed to me enough to make it a game I have played throughout the year. I was playing it when I thought of this and I'll be playing it again soon I imagine. But this blog isn't about a 2009 arcade game. Considering how much I wrote, I suggest skipping to the last two or three paragraphs if you're not looking to be here too long.

2010 saw the release of several games that I was interested in, all of them sequels to games I had enjoyed considerably over the years. Their release dates were the milestones marking out what I planned to play this year, and in the end I only bought one of them. In February, BioShock 2 was released to a lukewarm reception. I have no problem with that, it was probably an average sequel, I couldn't have cared because I am a total whore for the singleplayer gameplay. Precariously moving through every inch of every environment hacking and picking up every item, even if I don't need it, that shit appeals to some strange part of my headbrain. I love it. BioShock 2 was everything I wanted, or at least it would have been if there wasn't that strange option on the main menu that took me to a buggy and insanely poor multiplayer games that almost made me forget at times how much fun I could have with the disc. I gave the multiplayer a fair try, I confess that I am very unfond of certain FPS multiplayer aspects that seem to have become a staple of the genre in the last few years, I don't see why rank based unlocks need to exist. If a game can't hold your attention without them, you're playing it for the wrong reasons. BioShock 2 online changes dramatically as you level up and the people you play with unlock further items. Also, the multiplayer was clearly an attachment to the main title as exemplified by the fact that navigating from one to the other in the menu was fraught with bugs, developers should really test that shit, you know? It would still suck to this day, if it being utterly dead hadn't made a vast improvement to it.

The next game that I had marked out for great things is probably included here in a most unfair way, since I only played the demo for a short while before deciding that the pre-order wasn't getting fulfilled. This game was Crackdown 2, a game I had high hopes for due to my immense approval of the original title, and I had wanted it to be made since 2007. You may spot a theme already in that Crackdown 2 is another sequel to a singleplayer game with a multiplayer mode tacked onto it. Well done, this is one of three secret themes in this musing and the others are purely sexual. The inclusion of multiplayer alone did not put me off the game. By the time of release I had merely downgraded it to a 'purchase when cheap' status (and if that were still the case, it is damn cheap by this point in time). What really killed off my desire for the game was playing the demo, and reading about the content of the game's campaign mode in [Ass kissing mode activated] wonderfully honest reviews the like of which are written by Jim Sterling. The demo was not anything like I had expected and the experience I extrapolated from reviews was something I did not want. I felt that the addition of the multiplayer had significantly detracted from the gaming experience I had hope for, I mean I still do, but I did then too.

This is dragging on. Comic interlude.



Another game that had been on my radar for 2010, and indeed for many gamers, was Halo Reach. I surprised a good few friends of mine on Destructoid and in that other thing, reality, when I did not intend to pick this up in September. It wasn't a premeditated thing, I had pre-ordered it. All three versions. Now I don't hate Halo Reach, I didn't love the beta but then that was because I happened to really, really love Halo 3 and ODST. Halo 3 was a game I bought an Xbox 360 to play. It wasn't the quality of the series that has changed though, the efforts Bungie went to in making Halo Reach the best damn game they have ever made is very apparent to me, what changed was me. Or to be precise, my understanding of what I enjoy when I am playing games online. Some gamers are content to play games in series like Call of Duty, Halo and Battlefield and just rattle on for hours just grinding for xp or whatever floats their boat. Going to University and leaving behind the occasions when I would play Halo 3 splitscreen with a buddy (best online partner I've had by the way, he's like the antiSully) caused me frustration and eventual clarity over why I play such games and what makes me play them. It's something I cannot get from games most of the time, and that is inane amusement. Merely blasting people in the head with a shot of pew pew isn't going to keep me hooked, there has got to be something that appeals to me, that makes me laugh or otherwise happy. Halo 3 was close to doing this, because it had this weapon that I found hilarious. A weapon that, when used correctly, could dominate an entire branch of gameplay online and make some utterly fucking kick ass screenshots.



Not something that can be helped, but the matchmaking mechanic of halo games means I cannot get my regulated dose of gameplay I love easily. This is where I can return to talking about Battlefield 1943. As you may know, there are three classes in the game, three variations on how you can play it. The most consistently badly used class, and one I just cannot quit, is the sniper. You may shrug from experience with it (which you should have, you get an hour of free play with the trial version) and say it is not that great. It isn't for most people. But me? I role-play that bastard. Over the year I have been playing, I have become increasingly set in the mind of a sniper, learning the dos and don'ts, when tos and when not tos, finding the best places to squat on every map from where I can kill as many as possible without being detected or defeated. It may be sadistic, ok it is, but the pay-off for this delirium is every time I shoot another sniper in the head, every time somebody doing something I learnt not to dies by my hands, every time I see what some silly sod is doing in an effort to end me and then surprise them with remote explosives. My housemates are probably sick of hearing my strange sudden laughs. My enjoyment of this style of play also comes from a staple of my multiplayer gaming style, the preservation of a kill death ratio, and appeasing of my disposition towards not dying in a game. My KDR for the Japanese sniper class on the game stands at just over 19, and that makes me feel so warm and fuzzy inside in a totally evil way.

The last game I have left to talk about only became important to me late in the year, Assassin's Creed Brotherhood. Despite buying the previous game in the series in Easter 2010, I didn't play it until October due to being distracted by other games over the summer. I loved it, considered it a vast improvement over the first and started paying attention to the next game, even if I felt the plot had gone to shit. I never bought Assassins Creed Brotherhood, this was largely due to not wanting to play the multiplayer (and minimally due to the price tag, end of the year was rough on my bank account).

It was silly of me, and I will play it. That is a guarantee. The silver lining of this shit cloud of a blog is that it has a happy ending. The most fun I have in multiplayer gaming is not through acts of unkindness dealt to twelve year olds around the world, it's in playing games with friends and being brought together by those games. The phenomenon is something I feel very strongly for, since before I had internet access and would organise Halo LANs with friends in my village, and continue to endeavour to make other people consider. Since late 2009, and so for all of 2010, I have been participating in EUFNFs (that's European Friday Night Fights for those not in the know) with other Destructoid community members. It hasn't exactly been popular, on all too may occasions it was just me, Subenu and the Guy with the Hat. Not that it wasn't fucking awesome.

Of these two aspects of multiplayer gaming that I enjoy, one is obviously infinitely more appealing and something I would like to do more of. And that is the shared one. If I hadn't been able to play or just chat with Destructoid community members throughout 2010 has kept me happy with and interested in multiplayer gaming.

Over time, more people have joined us in EUFNFing and we've developed our own delightful little sub-community. Community is a special word to me on this website, because it is what sets it apart from any other gaming website. In the last year I have become increasingly active in the community here, becoming good friends with many and finally meeting the bloody lovely people in DtoidUK at Eurogamer. If there are reasons for 2010 sucking for me, it'll be my intolerance for studying physics or the amount of uncool things that happened in the world, it certainly won't be anything to do with video games.





Oh, and 2010 actually sucked because I still haven't met the Guy with the Hat.



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