We all have things we don't like about video games. Most recently people have been getting pissed about loot boxes, and rightfully so. This does not excuse intolerable behavior such as threatening or attacking game developers. In fact, you're talking to the wrong people. You shouldn't threaten or attack anyone on the internet, and especially not over dumb shit like video game features. You can go ahead and complain, not spend your money on a game, and move on. Before you go on Twitter to bitch and gripe, maybe consider who you're talking to. Developers, in general, want to create a game that is fun to play. When a system like lootbox microtransactions come along, it's likely not their decision to implement that. Secondary revenue is always a business level decision and is usually forced upon a studio to implement. So maybe don't talk to a developer about lootboxes. Talk to the business people and even then, try to be a decent human being when you do it.
Assassin’s Creed Origin’s side quests suck. They hardly tell a story and feel like chores. It’s generally a one off interaction with a character crying for help. You go do the thing, turn the quest in and never talk to that character again. So far I’ve felt that Bayek has had no impact on the world whatsoever. In most cases, these distractions last less than 20 minutes and reward you with some experience points or a piece of equipment. Sure, Bayek is a Medjay and he helps people. That’s his thing. You’d think for being a hero of the people, those people would have some sort of affinity or emotion toward him. What happens instead is that I feel like I’m helping a bunch of ungrateful ass holes. Nothing seems to matter in spite of how much you do for the people. I’m not saying there should be a morality system but I would like some sort of representation of Bayek’s reputation amongst the people. Just give me a reason to do the side quests outside of experience points.
Activision and Sledgehammer need to get off their shit. I’m writing specifically about their handling of social spaces and microtransactions in Call of Duty: WW2. In short, it’s all bad. Every detail of their execution is pretty fucking atrocious. First off, how the hell do you think you’re going to get away with putting a social space on the beaches of Normandy? How does that work? Normandy wasn’t exactly a picnic. Hundreds of thousands of lives were lost during the Normandy invasion and now you want to label to location a “social space?” Could the utter disregard for history get any worse? Putting that aside, Sledgehammer, likely with a push from Activision, is implementing a gross system to advertise the microtransactions present in the game. While you’re hanging out on a historical battlefield, hearing teenagers’ stories about fucking your mom, you’ll also see crates drop from the sky and land in front of these badmouthed goons. You’ll see these crates open and all the loot contained within. Though not pictured, there will likely be a prompt for the viewer to purchase the crate they just saw opened. It’s openly disgusting in a way even I was surprised by. They try to claim that loot boxes aren’t gambling but are also employing the same methods as casinos at the same time. I have a hard time with gambling and seeing other people open loot boxes does not help at all. Seriously, stop trying to rope me in with this bull shit. I’m so fucking tired of being lured back into my vices. Maybe for the first time in your history as a publicly traded company, do something that’s actually good for people.
Violence changes people. War is frightening and in the heat of battle, we are all susceptible to acts of cowardice. I, along with my friends, have acted in ways unbecoming of warriors. On the murderous island of Fortnite Battle Royale, and in the face of overwhelming odds, we have disgraced ourselves with selfish acts of self-preservation.
I was the first culprit. The team decided on a Loot Lake landing and being the more experienced player, I found myself landing first. There was another team. Without hesitation I picked up the submachine gun on the roof of a building at the dock. Turning to find an opposing player swinging his pick wildly, I blasted that son of a bitch. Running low on ammo, I began taking fire from the center island in the lake. With the few shots I had, I stripped the shield of my aggressor. Finding that his teammates were closing in, and that I had no ammunition…I panicked. I left my team to die as I searched for another weapon or some ammo. They screamed in terror as the opposing team took them out one by one. The left me, the lone survivor. A coward in the face of adversity.
Sam failed me. While fighting for control of Greasy Grove, he sat in the back of the burger joint with a fully loaded rifle in his hand. Despite cries for help from the rest of the team, Sam thought it appropriate to wait it out. That was until the man with a shotgun came rumbling in, blowing Sam’s head off.
Finally, my co-host and dear friend Tyler chose his own life over that of his team. Waiting upstairs for the gunfight on the ground floor to be over, Tyler came in at the last moment…with a grenade. Killing his only remaining teammate along with the enemy. “Why did he do this,” I wonder. A fight that could have been won if only he had been down there to lay down some extra fire. Also, what the hell did Keith do to deserve being blown up by a grenade? Tyler, I don’t know what to tell you. In a game of life and death, you chose a destructive path that led to your survival until the end, where you lost a one on one fight you should have won. Seriously, he just got done fighting three other dudes and you gave him time to heal and prepare for you. WHO DOES THAT? Go in for the kill, man. We could have at least won that one.
I don’t know what I want from video games anymore. I think I’ve officially burnt out on Destiny 2 without even having done the raid. From what I’ve heard, that might just be a breaking point anyway. Madden 18, Middle Earth Shadow of War, and GT Sport have occupied a lot of time but I can’t honestly say that I’ve experienced anything meaningful to change my perception on the game of the year. It seems as though my pick is going to come from the beginning of the year unless I get off my ass and play more Divinity Original Sin 2. I heard that game might change my mind.
The core loops of the previously mentioned games (excluding Divinity Original Sin 2) are boring the hell out of me. It certainly doesn’t help that AAA games are flooded with microtransactions and their design makes the player feel helplessly trapped in a cycle of grind unless they feed the game money. I couldn’t bring myself to buy Forza 7 after hearing about its gross design choices. I’d rather sit down and play a smaller game like Steamworld Dig 2. That game is really awesome by the way. I’m having a chill time digging away and upgrading my shit but again, nothing truly memorable.
I feel that 2017 was frontloaded in a way that made the rest of the year seem lame. Although this Friday seems to be the decider on whether that statement holds true. If I am unmoved by Wolfenstein, Assassin’s Creed, AND Mario Odyssey…idk what the fuck is wrong with me, or video games. I want to kill Nazi’s. I want Assassin’s Creed to appeal to me. I want Mario to do something charming and memorable. If none of this happens, either I’m dead inside or video games just suck. If all else fails, I can dig into my backlog of RPGs which will take me hundreds, if not thousands of hours to get through.