Today as I was pulling out of my driveway, I got t-boneíd by a pickup truck. Miraculously the truck hit the backseat on the driverís side and not me. The back was completely caved in and if I had been going a little slower I probably would not be here right now. I know, ďI could of have almost died and I didnítĒ, is lame and I should just STFUAJPG! But it really made me think of how much certain things mean to me and I keeping thinking of you guys.
I started coming to Dtoid after finding a link to RFGO on gonintendo.com. At this time in my life I was very depressed and seemed like my life was utterly pointless. But every Tuesday a brand new RFGO would warm my heart and make me have faith in my only life (I am completely serious). Eventually, I started reading destructoid regularly. It was no more than just another site that might get a story posted before Kotaku or IGN and thatís all it was for awhile. Sure I would comment on stories and maybe, much to my delight, get a question answered on Retroforce but I never really became a part of the community. Despite, this just by commenting Destructoid did something amazing. It made me proud to be a gamer for once, I used feel so bad when I would read other websites and look at the absolute clusterfuck that is video game consumers. Every petty fanboy war just made me so freaking ashamed because I thought deep down I was like that. I only saw these kinds of people when I wanted to engage in conversation about games so what else was I suppose to believe? I realized that Destructoid was something different. The posts had personality; the comments were rarely fan boyish and if they were it was usually started by a new person. I canít remember when but eventually I dropped IGN and then turned around and dropped Kotaku after they posted a ďGuide to furriesĒ article. From then on out it was just Destructoid for all my gaming news and occasionally gonintendo if I need a bit more esoteric news.
I was bored one day and I decided for whatever reason to figure out exactly what Dtoid IRC was. This one event changed everything for me and my relationship with Destructoid. IRC was my gateway drug to being a true part of the Destructoid community. I just wandered in one day and started chatting and I made friends fast. It was going pretty normal when it comes to a chatroom, I would just hang out and talk a little bit but there was never anything to separate from other places like IGN or Gamefaqs. IRC was the first time I ever bought something for people I only knew online. I picked up L4D just because of that hype in that room and love playing it with them. Then the day IRC will never forget occurred (see here and here). The fact that Dtoid was the place for me was reaffirmed and again I dove deeper.
I dove deeper with things like twitter, gmail and skype. Destructoid is no longer contained on Destructoid.com. Whenever I get online I usually have a ton of tweets from people that I just have to read. Destructoid officially became a part of my life. While on the subject of twitter, I would just like to mention the thing that separated this website as the true gaming website, the staff. Before Destructoid I would get so excited when Crecente would respond to my comment or something. I thought I was the coolest to be able to talk to someone internet famous like him (I know GIGANTIC NERD). Dtoid is different in the you feel like the editor are actually people. There doing this for the same reason you want to do it, because they like games. I canít tell you how many times Iíve talked to Aerox or Ben about something. I can swear I talk to Stella Wong about every single day. I know for a fact Iíve at least talked once to every person on staff besides Rey I think.
I have so many more memories I could share, the EPIC april fools day skype party with step up 2. (Calling mandi a whore is such a joy). The AMAZINGLY PERFECT Stella Wong buying me a book at the Cherry Blossom Festival. I seriously can not tell you how much I love her for that and because she is like the best person ever. Destructoid just keeps getting better and better for me all the time. I even going to meet another community member for the first time this Saturday, but I canít know because my car is totaled. Even still, nothing can compare to the orgy that will be PAX 2009 and I seriously am counting down the days to that.
Iím sorry if this post is a little scatterbrained or whatever because I am still hurting and not thinking straight a little from that crash. I just felt I had to tell all of you this while I was thinking about it and it was still on my heart. You are the best people ever Destructoid. The saying ďCome to Destructoid, get your life changedĒ Is still to this day completely true. My life is this best itís ever been and a big part of that was all from you Destructoid. I donít care how big you get or how much you change in the future, As long as the spirit that started and keeps this going every day is still there. I will never leave. <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3.
PAX. Just the letters conjure up memories and anticipation in all of us. PAX is one of the best parts of Destructoid when we all come together in one place to have the time of our lives. I think most of us has seen a video or two of PAX 08 and thought what a small facet of PAX do those videos truly capture. Where was everyone else while Necros was being set aflame? For most PAX happens over three days and is a non-stop experience. PAX 09 will be the last like it after this year it will be split into two different events on the West and East coast. This could be one of the last times we all come together in one place. I thought it would be important to chronicle this important moment in destructoid history. I thought of way that we can do just that. We are going to make a documentary style movie during PAX. A select few editors and community members will be given the opportunity to camcord their respective journeys from their house to Seattle and most importantly all the crazy stuff that happens during PAX. Iím not sure how many people will get to film themselves but I do want those who do to be able to show the world PAX from the perspective of a Dtoider.
This film will have a three fold purpose. First, to chronicle the last big PAX; Second, to show why the community is the best in the whole world and finally, I donít know if this will happen but I want people to be able to point to this film as something that attempts to show why Dtoid is so great. I want someone to ask, ďWhat makes Dtoid so great?Ē And someone point to this film. This isnít just my inane rambling, Hamza is already behind it and wants it to happen but we need you to tell us that you want it to happen as well. The requirements to be a filmer are that youíre going to PAX 09.
We are not sure if this is a requirement yet but it would be preferable if you have an HD camera. Dtoid uses HD nowadays and it would go a lot smoother if the people doing it had one.
So what do you think? Think you have what it takes? Do you think this a good idea? Please leave a comment of what you think because once again we have to judge if people want this to happen. Also leave a comment if you would consider being one the filmers. Donít worry about the HD thing yet, just mention it if you happen to have one.
So you just heard about the Shadow of the Colossus movie. You probably cringed just a bit or perhaps you were angry that something like this is happening. But you just accepted it as another example of why game-to-movies are a bad idea. You should feel much more than that, you should be OUTRAGED! "Why?, This is just how the movie industry treats us, hopefully it will change one day but we should just bare it for now" Bullshit! Utter Bullshit, this is something that should affect us deeply as not just gamers but as people who are games enthusiasts. To further my point let me point out some ideas of why this is such a terrible idea.
A colossus movie could never be justified on the screen
We all know the drill no matter how hard Hollywood tries they can never truly capture the experiences you feel when gaming into a movie. Shadow of the Colossus does something when you play it, it makes you feel alone. It puts you in a vast wasteland with nothing but a sword to take beasts that are striking and can be a times terrifying. It transposes you into the shoes of the wander. You arn't just watching him with nothing but a sword and horse attempt to do the impossible, you are the one that is attempting the daunting task. The movie will have you sit in a theater with a hundred or more people watch some actor go through a wasteland alone. You'll probably get some annoying prick behind you will yell at the screen how boring it is. That man is only there because he say a "bitchin" trailer or poster and expected some kinda Hercules versus Godzilla epic. In fact it sounds like minor character are getting a bigger role so that prick doesn't get bored. Even in the comfort of your own home, in complete solitude you could never come close to the same experiences. You can't stop and notice the scenery or get a feel how epic the scale truly is. No matter how many pan shots or fly overs they do, it will feel artifical and you won't feel like your a part of the world.
The person wants to make the movie and has played the game
Lets not focus on the fact that Mr. Mark's last film "Street Fighter: The legend of Chun-Li" was utter shit. That's a given, we all know that. I would instead like to focus on the problem I see here, Justin Mark has played this game. I know he would not be stupid enough to write a script if he never even played it. His friend Ben Fritz also played the game and even talked about how emotional the game is and how it is a big argument for the games as art movement. HOW? How in the fuck then after playing this game and after feeling those emotions did he arrive at the conclusion that this should be a film. At what point in his journey through this game did he think "Damn, that take down was nice but you know, this could be so much better if I wasn't controlling anything and it just sat there and played itself". It's utterly mind blowing to me. It's about the same as somebody seeing the Mona Lisa and thinking "Man, I would love to describe that in a book!" NO,NO,NO,NO,NO! Why? How can you take one story that is beautifully expressed in one medium and slap it on another, what compels someone to think that!
We all now what plagiarism is don't we? Taking somebodies idea and claiming them as your own. But this is an adaptation that's different than plagiarism. Oh really? I'm fine when you complement something by making a prequel or side story. That's much better for me personally (though either would be hurtful to Colossus by way of adding unnecessary story to the game). When they expect audiences to feel close to what the game made its players felt, it is plagiarism. Taking the ideas from the game and lying about them. Making them seem like they could be enjoyable and entertaining just as much in the context of a film as a game. But wouldn't that make licensed games just as much plagiarism? I say yes. If to interrupt a film and make it work in a game then yes. Are Movies to games ever good honestly. Sure we have spiderman 2 but that included a ton of crap that was extra. It followed the movie at times but did it honestly expect you to control the game as the scenes verbatim? You fought the same battle sure, but not in the exact same way.
It sets the idea of games as an artistic medium back a couple of years
This is my last point for now, We as gamers generally would want games to be recognized as art. Sure not all of us cry out for the respect but having it wouldn't hurt. We triumph the Braids, Passages, Mother 3s and Colossus's as a testament to video gaming. As an example to of what video games are truly capable of. Intelligent and deeply moving pieces of art that can have profound effect on people if not more so than other mediums. By having this movie take one of the games and turn it into something else is stating that "That was a pretty good story but lets legitimize it by making a film". It doesn't need to be legitimized. The point of making that argument that games are art is that games are possible of standing on their own artistic merits. I'm gonna make the assumption that this movie will be terrible, a little far-fetched but hear me out, what is that gonna saw to the people who don't play games. When people see that terrible movie they are gonna group the game in with the movie. I know that this movie doesn't change the fact that I can still go play the game it would be stupid to say this movie will actually hurt the game. It would be great if this movie bombed and we could point that games are a serious medium because they can't be translated to other mediums. But that doesn't change the fact that this game was meant to be art, it was meant to be a story told only by games. It doesn't hurt the game to make the movie but perhaps even worse it doesn't benefit it in any single way.
Their are other points I could make but for now I will leave at that. I wrote this without letting the news settle so there's still a lot of outrage in their do to just finding out. I'm also sorry if my points or arguments didn't flow because I didn't exactly plan this out. For now I'm hoping that we as gamers can make some attempt to stop this from happening. Rather through a petition or emails or even better make the greatest counter argument we can and then send it to the directors, the writers and the people trying to get this made.
Anyone who has played Lost Odyssey for the Xbox 360 knows about the most emotional scene in the whole game. This powerful scene depicts one of the characters named Lirium losing her life. Gamers have sobbed for hours on end after this scene wishing that since the world of Lost Odyssey has items to bring characters back to the dead that you could somehow resurrect Lirium. Well it has just been discovered that you can indeed can resurrect Lirium you just have to play a certain way and go a little bit out of the way.
First things first, you need to have 100 items that heal you, potions or revival items are included. You must not have 100 of one item it must be a ratio like 1 and 99 or 69 and 31. Once you insert disc 2 the code doesnít need anymore input until you get to disc 4. Hereís where it gets a little complicated. Before you fight the final battle in that tower you need to put in the rest of the code. First you need all of the dreams (excluding DLC) and your characters should not be above Level 61. Now go to the item shop in Numara and talk to the shop keeper 567 times. I recommend turning the channel to something interesting while leaving the game on and just pressing the buttons over and over. Remember to keep count though, once this is done he will finally say on the 567th time ďGod Damn it why the hell do you keep talking to me. Jesus Christ, you been here for like two hours doing the same thing over and over! Get the hell out of my store you psycho!Ē He will point to a newly open door in the back that you can now go into.
Upon entering this room it will be a completely white room with nothing but the door you came in and a save point. Hereís where it gets a little complicated. Use the Save point and go back to the Xbox 360 main menu. If you have an Ipod (donít worry if you donít) plug it into the 360 USB port and download the Ipod connectivity thing on Xbox Live that allows you to use your Ipod with the music player on the console. If you donít have an Ipod just try and use windows media player with the console. Now you need to go online and get a play list of really hardcore Metallica. Now once you got a play list that is at least an hour long. Go back to the Xbox and load up Lost Odyssey again. Once back in the white room. Start the very first thousand years of dreams sequence from your main menu. Push guide right as it starts and load up your play list. Now you need to watch every single dream sequence while listening to the songs. Luckily the game realizes what you are doing by now and the text will come at a little more fast paced. Finally after doing all this bullsh errÖtotally necessary stuff. You will start to encounter random battles in the white room!
Here where it gets a little complicated. You need to have Mack in your party as you start battling the monster. Youíll only encounter pink colored Kelelons in the white room that give a 100 exp per match. You need grind so Mack can go from level 61 or below all the way up to level 99. This will take awhile but hey you got a Metallica play list to listen to while your doing it! Once at level 99 Mack will learn the best green magic spell in the whole game the big Mack attack.
(Pictured: Mack performing the BIG MACK ATTACK in the white room)
Now that you know the big Mack attack, it is finally time for the final part of Liriumís revival. Hereís where it gets a tad bit challenging. Go and fight the final boss. If you entered the code correctly (God help you if you didnít). You should be able to fight the final boss with any characters the whole time including mortals. You need to have in your party Kaim, Sarah, Cooke and Mack when you fight the boss.( since they are Liriumís family) When fighting the final boss you may only use the simple physical attacks and healing items only! Once you get the boss down to his final form its time to unleash the BIG MACK ATTACK. Mack being the scrappy kid that he is, will unleash the big Mack attack as the final blow. The boss will die and everything will be peaceful. Out of that huge bubble light thing, Lirium will walk out alive and healthy! Everyone will run up and hug Lirium. Not paying attention to their surrounding the building will collapse on top of them. Everyone dies! Congratulations you just got the BAD ending of Lost Odyssey. What the hell did you expect? Bringing back a character you died in a cutscene? That goes against all Rpg norms but you just had to push it didnít you? DIDNíT YOU?
We all heard that Anthony got published in the Escapist to the shock of basically no one (brad rice was first!). But he has done something much more relevant to our needs here at Destructoid. By listening to podtoid you might know of the summa aftershow where rob summa engages in a masturbatory process by podcasting by himself and whoever is lonely enough to call in. Rev took this as an opportunity to call in and ask him two questions. The first makes summa seem to be on podtoid and the second was "On a scale of one to ten how old is your current girlfriend. (Note: Anthony uses the fake name Justin so he won't be caught)
Jimís recent article about how Rpgs are becoming a handheld only affair made me start to think. At first, I thought he was right and the days of the epic fifty-hour Rpg unraveling while you sit on the couch with some drinks and a night to kill was over. But are console Rpgs truly dead? It seems that way with nothing but the same old, same old coming out it can almost feel like the console Rpg is nothing but a relic of the past. So should this generation be the eulogy of these once proud owners of some of the best stories and longest journeys in gaming. No, the Rpg genre needs to evolve but many say that evolving Rpgs has the potential to take the soul out of remove the fifty hours and the turn based and you no longer have an Rpg. Iím talking about a fusion if you will, of the handheld and the console into one new type of Rpg.
I believe Jim hit the nail on the head when talking about how playing on a handheld improved the experience vastly compared to a console with bite-sized grinding sessions and the portability being the new generation of Rpgs. If this is true how we could go about fusing this two types of systems. Letís look at example in gaming history. When the Pokemon craze was catching on Nintendo knew kids would go ape over the chance to battle in 3D. So instead of creating a new Rpg for the N64 they simply created Pokemon stadium, a game that all you did was battle your Pokemon from your Gameboy Rpg in 3D. To accomplish this they packed in an accessory called the transfer pak
This nifty like device allowed you to take your Pokemon you had raised on the Gamboy and transfer them to the n64 to battle in 3D. While this was never expanded upon outside of that concept they unknowingly hit upon what future Rpgs could become. Nowadays we wouldnít need two different games to connect, with the power of the DSi and PSP memory we could easily have bits of that Rpg download and carry it around with us.
Portable Grinding Machine
This seems to be the largest benefit of having a handheld. Those long and tedious grinding sessions can turn into quick little bursts of game play while saving the story and more meaty parts for when you have an hour or two to devote to some handheld gaming. So why not take this core concept and add in a console? Imagine you reach a part in Final Fantasy XIII that is going to take a couple hours of grinding in order to beat boss X or get legendary item Y. This is where you could transfer your characters to your PSP and wait until you have a spare moment to grind a little. The portable version of the game could even look like a 16-bit equivalent of the game with nothing but monsters to grind. This is taking that benefit of handhelds and stripping it down to the bare minimum. This would be best in a situation where you hit a rough spot and need to gain a couple levels, still preserving the nice graphics and immersive battles for the console but the tedium for the small little device inside your wallet or purse.
Handheld From Point A to Point B Machine
If you were to divide up modern Rpgs into a pie chart you might see that the story elements of an Rpg such as the cutscenes and battle that actually effects the story makes up lets say about twenty percent of the actual game the rest is all invested in grinding, side quests and traveling. Traveling in a Rpg is more than likely to come down to go from point A to point B and battling monster constantly trying get there. The overly elaborate dungeons and the quick trips across the entire continent can begin to add up and even put off some. If we could be able to take those boring bits of travel and put them into the easy to swallow package of a handheld it would be a lot more tolerable. You could of course go for the old standby and add an airship to get rid of the pesky traveling but one thing that can plague Rpgs are stereotypes such as airships or whatever magic way of flying around the party suddenly discovers despite it being the middle ages.
Handheld Compliment Machine
The most unlikely evolution to happen would be on a full-on portable version of the console game. A game that could be played in itís entirety on the handheld or the console would present a few problem namely cost to develop such a monstrosity, having enough memory to do this and the fact that it would probably never appeal to a developer. Why make one game twice when you can make two different games. So perhaps this is something we will see much further down the line, an evolution of the evolution if you will. Despite its likeliness, let us examine just what game like this could accomplish. First you would not be tethered in anyway to any particular device this would make the experience totally unique to your needs. You would still have the big and beautiful console experience when you could find the time but if youíre out and about most of your days you could just devote your time to the handheld. While this is most ideal I have to reiterate that the odds of this happening are very very slim and full of too many difficulties to count.
Rpgs have been around for many years and it is possible that they could become handheld-only one day but we are at a time I think, when Rpgs could become one of the most powerful genres. Truly epic stories that are not only cross-platforms but actually spread across different platforms to supply an experience in story that is unique and could become a huge part of your life for awhile. Becoming your leisure at home and your tiny bits of escapism wherever you go.