Thursday, March 01, 2012

I Think I Hate Zelda

If a game doesn't challenge me philosophically, or extremely effectively pull my emotional strings, or put me in a situation where my decisions matter, not just to my character, but to the characters that surround me, I don't care about the story. Not one whit. That's not bad, a game doesn't have to be about story. Half Life 1 has a wonderful story that I don't care about, but it's brilliant because it's all around me, unobtrusively being there, letting me play the game, but sometimes... just completely grabbing my attention. As opposed to the new Zelda: Skyward Sword. Heck, from back in the day, Final Fantasy VII.

I like playing a game. Getting into its mechanics and spending as much time as possible navigating the world. It's the whole point, the gameplay is the root of what makes a game unique. You should never, ever, EVER, stop the gameplay, take a person away from running, jumping, fighting or thinking about a puzzle. Unless the dialog is an integral part of the puzzle, or the environment or even itself a part of the gameplay, it should not ever interrupt the experience. In Zelda, I have spent far more time button mashing through meaningless dialog, often page after page after page with the sole purpose of sending me on a very simple menial task, trying to create context. I've already bought into the game. I don't need you to keep selling me on it. If you want me to run somewhere arbitrary for no particular reason, I'll do that.. cause I bought the game. I don't need empty and meaningless context. I want to play through dungeons, and solve puzzles and fly.

Button mashing through bad dialog is the quickest way to get me to quit any game. I may not be able to bring myself to finish this Zelda.

Call me a weirdy, but I think Wind Waker was the best Zelda I ever played, and even that was a bit too talkative.

On the plus side, finally played The Missing Link DLC for Deus Ex Human Revolution.. and it is a pretty robust, largish addition to the game. I had a lot of fun with it. IT even had an achievement for playing without using any praxis kits, or weapons, or explosives at all of any kind. Oh, man, was that fun and challenging. Oddly enough, I played through it MUCH faster than I did the other way. Probably because I was just focused on surviving and beating it at all instead of the other way.. where I made it my personal goal to knock every last enemy soldier in the world unconscious.

What can change the nature of a man?
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