I think there are two games this week that got, and deserved, all of our attention. First of all, there was the announcement of DuckTales Remastered.
Now I havenít played the original for the NES, because when it came out my parents had not yet decided to bring the horror that is this amalgamation of brightness and shadow into our formerly fair and just world. I did watch the show as a kid, though. With that in mind, I do have to say that trailer is fucking brilliant. You know, with the sing-along and all? It completely banks on nostalgia, and it is glorious. The only little gripe I have is with that quote from Cliffy B in the opening. I know itís technically true, he did start his career with platformers, but it feels out of place to choose the big man behind Gears of War to endorse DuckTales. Maybe thatís just me. Either way itís a platformer and it looks awesome and I want it.
But the real reason Iím mentioning DuckTales? Well, you know how Tony posted that Finnish DuckTales theme song? Yeah, two can play that game. After all, you know that I both love arbitrarily sharing Dutch shit and am entirely shameless. Frankly, you shouldíve seen this coming. Be wary though; Iím pretty sure that my version doesnít have taco Nazis.
SO BOOYAH, SUCKAS. Here's what I had to deal with growing up:
I gotta admit, that dub is actually pretty good. The lyrics are pretty close in tone to the English one, at least. I also remember the show itself being very good about it, because it was still made in that time when only childrenís cartoons got dubbed and when there were more than 10 voice actors in the entire damn country. I wish I was exaggerating. The Ducks still have very recognizable voices to this day. (Theyíd better, because Donald Duck is massive in northern and western Europe. Seriously, you donít even know how huge he is.) But then all the shows kids watch nowadays are all done by the same people, and there are only like 10 voice actors at best: every character sounds the same now. Dubbed childrenís shows is a major pet peeve of mine from the get-go. I learned all of my English from TV and now weíre denying our children that same, in my opinion incredibly valuable, learning experience just for the sake of ratings. I learned the difference between ďmouseĒ and ďmiceĒ from Tom & Jerry for godís sake. At age 6. So when I see them air even a dubbed Power Rangers show nowadays it hurts me to my core. Fucking hate it.
Okay, rant over. Thereís more important stuff to talk about anyway. Namely:
You saw this coming. The second game of the week has got to be Bioshock Infinite. That game has been doing nothing if not sweeping the boards. But Iíve got a big confession to make though: Iíve never actually played a Bioshock game. Neither the first nor the second.
Yeah. I know.
I think I need your help.
For me, Bioshock is a weird case. Iíve mentioned many times before that I normally donít like First Person Shooters. There are some exceptions to the rule, but they are few and far between. Mostly the ones I like are the ones that are incredibly mindless, like Painkiller and Bulletstorm, or take a special approach with regards to exploration and progression in such a way that you barely realize youíre playing a shooter in the first place, like Metroid Prime and Oddworld: Strangerís Wrath (the latter less so). Any ďregularĒ FPS I tend to find boring. All too often I feel like Iím just walking in a straight line until some enemies pop up, point my sight at them for a bit, only to walk on afterwards. Donít even get me started on cover systems. I get to sit behind a waist-high wall until the red stuff dissolves from my screen? Pass, thanks. I like games where you can be full in the fray, where dodging, quick thinking or strategy is required for survival rather than beating the enemies through the awesome power of having a Wolverine healing factor.
Not to mention the fact that you can barely even see the waist-high wall, because for some reason FPS developers seem to think that things were better when we still only had black and white TVs.
The stories in many FPSes are often uninspired at best, and more in general the whole military and gun thing is completely lost on me. For reference, I took this next quote from the Steam page for Call of Duty: Black Ops: ďAn epic campaign (Ö) where you will play as an elite Black Ops soldier in deniable operations where if you are caught, captured or killed, your country will disavow all knowledge of your existence.Ē That right there just manages to hit all my yawn-buttons at once. I donít know what all of you think about it, but to me this sounds utterly uncompelling. This shit seriously gets me less interested in a game than ďUh-oh, Bowser kidnapped Peach again!Ē I took this one at random, but Iím sure you could work through a list of FPS titles and come up with dozens of equally uninteresting scenarios.
There are just a whole slew of little things that bug me about the FPS genre. Canít help it, just the way it is. Even Half-Life 2 didnít do a whole lot for me. I fully admit that itís not always a rational dislike (especially considering my recently documented love for bows), but itís a dislike nonetheless.
That said, if there is any FPS I could see myself giving an honest shot, itís probably Bioshock. It does seem to take a bit of a different approach from other games. I know about ďwould you kindly?Ē and things like that, and it seems that there is inspired stuff in here. Iíve heard that the stories are genuinely good, and from what I know thereís even some sort of ďmagicĒ system in these games, alleviating my problems with the gun thing a bit. Itís those kinds of things that make me think that maybe itís time to reevaluate my ďmeh, shooterĒ-policy, even if just for these games. From what I know about Infinite the whole plot with Elizabeth does sound like a thing I would enjoy. Besides that, Elizabeth looks incredibly well designed art-wise and Iím always a huge sucker for that. If I were to play Infinite, itíd be primarily for her.
I donít know what it is. Thereís just something about her.
Everything thatís been said about Infinite the past week makes me curious about the Bioshock series, and whether or not I should jump into them after all. Like I said, I know some things about the stories, but Iím sure thereís still stuff in here that could surprise me. Bioshock Infinite, and particularly Elizabeth, looks very intriguing to me, but I know the first two also have things going for them. Iím just completely unsure about whether or not thatís going to be good enough to make me sit through a game so squarely rooted in a genre I so often find boring or unfulfilling, not to mention the simple fact that guns do very little for me and I can think of much more compelling stuff than emptying a clip of ammo into some madmanís skull.
So to round this off Iíve got a question for all of you that the above has been leading up to. Knowing what my feelings are towards the genre, should I give the Bioshock games an honest try? Is Infinite good even for someone like me? Is it worth working up to that through 1 and 2?
Villains in all media, not just video games, can end up being a dime a dozen. Far too often, a villain's motives boil down to "I am a bad, and so I do bad things. Fear me." While this format has worked for countless stories, at this point in my life (the ripe old age of 20) I‚Äôve become jaded and grumpy, finding myself rolling my eyes when I see yet another antagonist wreaking havoc with no background or reasoning presented as to why they‚Äôre being such a butthole.
What‚Äôs far more interesting to me is when a villain‚Äôs motives or actions come across as justified, perhaps leaving you rooting for them to defeat the protagonist [insert Elder God Tier villain meme here].
My favorite example of this would be Meruem from the Chimera Ant arc of Hunter x Hunter. While he doesn‚Äôt necessarily fit the exact mold I laid out above, he‚Äôs easily one of the most dynamic and curious villains I‚Äôve ever come across. For the sake of not spoiling what is perhaps one of the most exciting, action-packed, and tear-inducing arcs in anime history, I won‚Äôt delve into the details of what makes Meruem so great. Instead I encourage anyone who hasn‚Äôt seen Hunter x Hunter to set aside some time and plow through the series. Really, it‚Äôs that good.
But hey, that‚Äôs just how I feel. I‚Äôm sure there are folks out there who prefer their villains to be simple. If I ever met one of these theoretical people I might have a panic attack, but I‚Äôll deal with that should the time come. I‚Äôm sure after some deep breaths we would get along. Maybe we could even snuggle, should my husband allow such an event to transpire.
All said and done, we arrive at the topic of this month‚Äôs Bloggers Wanted: Villains that did nothing wrong. Due to communication errors, this entry in the hallowed halls of Bloggers Wanted is a tad late. Regardless, all you have to do is head over to the Community Blog section of the site, and whip up a Cblog about a villain who you feel was secretly the good guy all along.
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