Blog Banter: Games That Let You Know the Real Me
Posted by deckard47 on February 12, 2008
So this week, I want to tell you what games to play if you want to get to know me. All of you who want to save your souls, leave, immediately. Just so you know, this is a long, long post. Oopsies.
That’s actually kind of a tough question, I think that I largely fall into a certain stereotype of gamers, I’m a passive, nerdy, RPG-heavy, stay away from the frat boy/child gamers who scare me kind of guy. In fact, choosing this list has been really difficult for me. I started out picking my favorite games ever, and realized that this was not the right list. I really wanted to include all those honorable mentions, you know, the games that wouldn’t tell you exactly who I am, but games that would show you where and how I step out of my comfort zone. In fact, that sounds like a much more interesting and revealing list, so here we go.
The first list, the games that show you the obvious side of me, are straightforward: Baldur’s Gate II, Fallout, Kotor, Super Smash Brothers Melee and Mario Kart. Basically, I like really in-depth, story driven non-Japanese RPGs, and I like awesome Nintendo party games. Everything else is just something that amuses me, to different degrees, but that doesn’t keep me enthralled for very long. A good example of these distractions would be something like the Max Payne games, or the Dungeon Siege games. They’re fun, but I don’t play them for too long.
Now, the important part of the post: the games that I shouldn’t have played for hours and hours, lost sleep over, or obsessively played over and over. These are the games that show the interesting side to me, that show you what I’m like, not what I like.
And the winners are: COD4, Galactic Civilizations II, Heroes of Might and Magic V, Drake’s Fortune, and (may I be smitten by God, yes, “smitten,” I’ll say it that way) Halo 3. I’m not sure how to go about explaining each.
COD4 forces me to play aggressively, boldly, taking chances. It’s the opposite of how I play HOMMV, where I often build up an absolutely Fabulous Palace before the Captain or Owen’s ruthless hordes ruin me. Plus, I don’t suck at COD4, I actually break in between a 1/1 and a 2/1 average. I like it despite its alarming imperialist/racist overtones (yes, they are there, be quiet), and because it offers a nuanced and interesting approach to offline and online (in the areas of storytelling/characterization and gameplay/rewards, respectively) military shooters.
That HOMMV reference of course leads me to HOMMV and GCII. Both of these games really ate up my time, and I found in them (but nowhere else, really) a way to feed my obsessive Empire/Castle building urges, urges which are always indulged, and then punished by my oppponents. These games slipped under my strategy radar. Maybe it was the cute horsies of HOMMV and the fact that GCII lets me create a Tie Fighter. Maybe.
You all know of my love for Drake’s Fortune, and its super-sexy hero. And yet, it has Scary Monsters! It has many things that bug me: a “cover” combat mechanic, extreme cheese, Monsters (why!?), and an hour count that basically makes me replay it to feel like I’m getting all of those dollars back. But I don’t care. The plot, story and acting are the perfect kind of cheesy, the combat is the right kind of “cover” combat, and the replay is as good if not better than the first time through. So, I like half lush tropics, half scary platformers if they are perfect, and called Drake’s Fortune.
Finally, the dark horse entry on the list (what does that mean? I don’t know!), Halo 3. Halo 3 is the anti-me. It is all about stuff that I am not all about. And yet, I spent a whole hour capturing screens of my multiplayer defeats, amazed by the simple video/picture setup that they have going. I’m amazed by the fact that I can capture the exact moment when a bullet punctures my Spartan’s skull, or when I get smashed under a Mongoose, in one, pretty screenshot. And that isn’t even talking about the Forge.
So, to get to know me through games, play games obsessively, play games that have great or deep or amusing storylines (DMC4 would be the anathema of my favorite plot, script, and voice-acting then, but that is for another post). Play games despite (or perhaps because of) their glaring flaws. You see, I loved Vampire: Bloodlines, and it is an awful, awful game, just as I loved Fallout Tactics, despite its 10 million flaws. Take games and find enjoyment in their most peculiar, meaningless, and minute recesses. If possible, enjoy them despite you own misgivings. Oh, and play with my friends, because without them, some of these games wouldn’t be here. Who you play with (or who you discuss the game with, or take turns with, or…) is half of everything.
By the way, if you don’t like Baldur’s Gate II and Drake’s Fortune, you just leave. Like right now. So, that was way too long, and I apologize. I’ll put a warning up front, shall I?
Blog Banter is a group of bloggers passionate about anything and everything video games. Every month we all write an article on the same topic, and it always has to do with games. The different tastes and experiences you’ll find are really amazing, so enjoy. If you are interested in participating, contact bs angel for more information. Enjoy all of our articles. Other Banterers:
Silvercublogger, The Average Gamer, Game Couch, thoughts and rants, Delayed Responsibility, Boom Stick Brigade, CrazyKinux’s Musing, Gamer Unit, Draining Souls.net, 8-Bit Brigade, Hawty McBloggy, Zath Games Tech, Lou Lantos