Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Stories in Games Fucking Suck

You unbelievable assholes wouldn't know a good story if Charles Foster Kane broke into your house and trashed the shit out of your room. I cannot believe in this day and age shit like Mass Effect, Dragon Age, Metal Gear Solid, Bioshock, and every other fucking game that gets released receives praise for having a good story. I understand that you idiots didn't pay attention in English class, and that you don't read books, and that you've cut yourself off so thoroughly from the rest of society that you literally are unable to recognize what passes for an actual conversation, but that's no fucking excuse.

not a writer

Take Bioshock for example. Oh wow turns out the guy helping you was the bad guy, and you were controlled by some secret phrase, and Andrew Ryan is your father. Please excuse me while I yawn so hard my jaw snaps off and I bleed to death. Even if you manage to ignore the fact that they ripped the entire plot from System Shock 2, it's still a boring story. It works as a motivation for a game, in that you have a reason to go from point A to point B, but as plot it is still as bland as ever. Why the fuck is Ryan trying to keep control of a city he knows has died? Why the fuck does Fontaine want control of the city? Why does the Nazi scientist want the Little Sisters to stay alive? They never bothered writing any of these characters deeper than their intial characterizations, so ultimately the player doesn't really give a shit about them or about what happens in the stupid city. It has a 'cool style' or some shit so stupid nerds fall over themselves to praise it.

not a writer

Metal Gear Solid's plot is stupid, doesn't make any sense, and I'm all but certain Hideo Kojima didn't bother thinking about how any of the events connect to each other. In fact, I'm pretty sure he wrote the plot for each of the games as a series of notes on separate napkins and reciepts, jotting down whatever he though "mite b cool" knowing that stupid losers with nothing better to do will fill in the blanks.

definitely not a writer

Mass Effect is so fucking awful I want to fucking cry. Why do I feel like the only person that bothers to have standard for characterization, plot, and voice acting? Why do I feel like I'm the only person with standards for anything? Tali Zorah is a poor excuse for a naive, socially awkward, and ultimately shallow character for nerds to fawn and obsess over. All of the other characters are either extremely boring, or poor caricatures of old Jungian archetypes. The story itself is flimsy at best: another save the world Bioware classic with all the great cliche's of RPG storytelling. I really shouldn't have to fucking explain this. This shouldn't be a huge shock to everyone. The very fact that no one is making fun of Bioware for their awful, clunky dialogue is almost frightening. Is this really what passes for a good story now?

someone who has never talked to another human in real life

For fuck's sake, the ending to Mass Effect 3 is ripped straight out of Deus Ex. You can either bring the Illuminati back to power, join them and rule the world (Take control of the Reapers). Or you can plunge the world into a second Dark Age by destroying the global communications hub and prevent anyone from taking over the world (Destroy the Reapers and all synthetic life). Or you can merge with Helios to rule the world as benevolent dictator with infinite knowledge and reason (Initiate synthesis between organic and synthetic life).

not a writer

As an aside, if you have ever cried at a video game story, please go outside. You are such an embarassment to everyone around you that it is a wonder you haven't killed yourself yet. I'm not even joking anymore, this shit is serious. You seriously have something wrong with you if something as shallow and poorly written as a video game story or character makes you cry. I honestly wonder what your reaction would be to watching something like Schindler's List.

a huge racist

Okay, perhaps I'm being too harsh on the plot itself. Realistically any story can be interesting, it just depends on how you tell it. Unfortunately it just so happens that video games aren't the correct medium to tell a fucking story. Video games require the player to be doing something; they are an active medium. But when you are being told a story, you have to stop and listen so that you can understand and bond with the characters and the motivations. This doesn't fucking work in video games because of how jarring it is to do something, then stop, and do something else, and then stop again. It's like driving on a backed up highway: it isn't fun.

The closest thing you'll ever come to games telling a story would be an open world game that presents the player with a setting, and the ability to do many different things with no set path and no clear goal. The player will then actively create their own story as a byproduct of the gameplay. 

a good story

There is no reason to create a deep story in games, and, likewise, there is no reason for anyone to bother caring or praising a story in a video game. I cannot understand the insistence of losers everywhere to "play games for the story". At that point you aren't playing shit you fucking idiot. Not to mention the fact that you just spent $60 on what you could essentially get for $10 from a movie, or like $15 for a good book. But the next time you think a story in a video game is good, just shut the fuck up and watch Casablanca or Schindler's List. Once you finish, compare the movie to the game. If you thought that the video game story was still better, consider whether or not you have aspergers, and think about whether or not that might affect your judgement.

13 comments:

  1. crusader kings 2 wins again [drives off on fast horse, kills all your kids along the way]

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    1. i wanted to say something about the fact that there are practically no games where story affects gameplay (exception being ck2), but this was more focusing on the fact that gamesess stories suck.

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    2. a unique message that no one else has ever put forth esp. not me (i own)

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    3. i legitimately wonder how many video game writers, are actual literary writers. like have english degrees and shit like that. as opposed to being the cheapest most popular fanfiction.net author that the developers could pick up.

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    4. lol like an english degree means anything

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    5. at least it means they know how to write actual sentences, and use grammar, and might not be a fuckshit

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  2. Forget an English degree, how many video game writers have read a book in the last 4 years that wasn't trashy fantasy or dime sci-fi?

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    1. reminder that resident human refuse "david gaider" stated that twilight was an inspiration for writing the romances in recent Bioware games.

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  3. Kitsch upon kitsch.

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  4. My favorite thing that any dev has ever said was that one time when a Bioware guy was being interviewed and was like "yeah, I know a good story when I see one. Ever hear of Joseph Campbell? Yeah, that's right, my stories follow the Hero's Journey exactly. I'm basically a genius" and I screamed at my computer THE HERO'S JOURNEY IS DESCRIPTIVE NOT PRESCRIPTIVE YOU GODDAMN HACK

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    1. I do wonder if these writers go into the job with these delusions or if they're hastily picked up somewhere along the line in an attempt to justify what they do as anything but gratuitous fantasy fulfillment.

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  5. There are a lot of films and novels that put video-game storytelling to shame. Conversely, there are some video-games out there that excel in storytelling to the point that I would put them right next to some of my favorite films. Every storytelling medium has its artists who push it to its limits, video-games are no exception.

    That said however, video-games still have a long ways to go before they garner the respect that films and books enjoy. Video-games are still a young medium, and as such, they don't quite measure up to the other mediums yet. I think we're looking at a few more decades before we'll begin seeing video-games match up to other storytelling mediums on a regular basis.

    Whether or not video-games are meant to tell stories or not is an interesting debate to say the least. If you'd have asked me that a decade ago, I would have said that gameplay should be focused on, but I've seen enough examples of great video-game storytelling over the years that I'm willing to go along for the ride for now and see where things progress.

    This is on a side-note, but there's nothing wrong with crying over a video-game or finding its story meaningful. We all bring a unique perspective to the fiction we enjoy, and I don't view anyone any as any less for finding a video-game story powerful. I've seen a great many powerful stories in literature, film, and television, and I've seen them before in video-games as well.

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