[It's time for another Monthly Musing -- the monthly community blog theme that provides readers with a chance to get their articles and discussions printed on the frontpage. -- CTZ]
Most games put the player in a position of power. It's a time-tested tradition to simply help us out and make the game more, well, fun. Typically, games exploit the plight of heavily outnumbered heroes in hostile environments. When handing a player such a daunting challenge, it seems only fair to give him a few breaks. If every single enemy in Half-Life were as smart, well-equipped, dexterous and resilient as Gordon Freeman, even the steadiest FPS veterans would have trouble advancing past the first chapter. Similarly, Mario gets fireballs and invulnerability stars, and Final Fantasy heroes get stashes of Phoenix Downs. Setting aside the strictly in-game rule sets, saving and continues are enormous advantages. Even the notoriously abused Contra marines start off with three lives -0 ask their real-life counterparts how much they'd like that.
One of my personal favourites is the battle against Avion, the fifth Colossus. After Wander hits it with an arrow, it flies right at him, and as suicidal as it may sound Wander can only grab its wing and hang on as it shoots through the air at insane speed.
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