I had this week’s entry planned out – I was going to hate on Bungie for aggravating Destiny fans and on Rocksteady for releasing a game that doesn’t work. The rug was pulled out from beneath me though, because Rocksteady have removed the PC version of Batman: Arkham Knight until they have fixed it, and I-Own-All-Of-Destiny players can pick up even more DLC without having to repurchase everything.
But guess what? I’m going to hate on them anyway because fuck those guys.
Hear me moan,
Arkham Knight’s Season Pass is £32.99. That means for the whole game you’re forking out nearly £80. There’s nothing inherently wrong with season passes – extra nuggets of gameplay released throughout the year to increase the game’s lifespan is great – but I can’t help but be cynical when it feels like Rocksteady have released 70% of the game and are holding the rest at ransom.
Turtle Rock Studios are taking the piss too. They’re releasing a second season pass for Evolve, where upon they will introduce new monsters and new classes. This sounds like a patch to me, except you have to pay for it. The more Turtle Rock adds to Evolve the more it feels like they released an unfinished game. Can you imagine if Gamefreak released a Pokémon game with only 151 Pokémon then made you buy a season pass for the rest?
Bungie realised their fuck-up and quickly resolved it but then they dropped another bombshell when they announced exclusive content for Red Bull drinkers. This is like buying a brand new car but to get the keys you have to change your name to Mountain Dew McDonald. If you bought Destiny expecting to play a game you better get used to unlocking the gameplay by purchasing real beverages and snacks because apparently popping the disc into your console just won’t do it anymore.
Morons, the lot of ‘em.
Ryan Payton, the founder of Camouflaj, thinks game developers are tackling storytelling wrong. He thinks games should drop the narrative structure (but keep enough of it so there are quests to do) and let gamers create their own stories. His solution? Dynamic destructible environments that have meaningful impacts on gameplay!
Blowing shit up plus the Butterfly Effect doesn’t equate to interesting stories. It actually leads to one story: some inconsiderate douchebag with no respect for the environment destroys everything and kills everyone. This game already exists and it’s what everyone does in every sandbox game when they detour from the main mission and side quests.
Without the narrative structure it just becomes a playground where the gamer switches off Autosave so they don’t accidentally cause irreversible damage that will ruin their playthrough once they’ve finished dicking about. Ryan Payton wants those changes to mean something, and it’s at that point where you eject the disc and trade it in for GTA VI.
Shuhei Yoshida recently admitted that Sony felt nervous when they found out Guerrilla Games’ new IP Horizon: Zero Dawn’s main character was going to be female. I hope you’re as flabbergasted as much as I am. How popular are Lara Croft and Faith? They’re household names (for gamers, at least). Yet producers are still worried a character with ovaries is risky. I’ve never played a game and associated with the main character because he pees standing up. In games where you build your own character I always try to create one in my own image, so I don’t even live vicariously through videogames.
I understand that it may be risky in the sense that creating a female character is going to face heavy scrutiny, so producers may want to avoid this scenario to prevent any chances of bad press. Progress has to be made though. There are plenty of two-dimensional male characters. Eventually there are going to be so many two-dimensional female protagonists in games that it won’t even matter anymore.
Also, am I the only one who finds female protagonists intriguing? Life Is Strange, Rise of the Tomb Raider, Hellblade, Recore, Mirror’s Edge: Catalyst and Horizon: Zero Dawn are all on my to-do list. They all offer different experiences: Time travel, adventure, mental illness, spiritual discovery, parkour and robot dinosaurs. If they were all male leads would I still play them? Probably, but if games are going to have a diversity of gameplay styles then they may as well have a diverse set of genders too.
Can someone please shove a sock in Dan Aykroyd’s mouth? He’s spent the latter half of his career trying to reboot Ghostbusters and when it finally does get off the ground with a female cast that still isn’t enough! He’s dragging the franchise through the mud by forcing an unnecessary male-driven reboot/sequel. The more Aykroyd talks about it the less anyone wants to see it. He’s trying to get everyone excited but nobody cares as much as he does. A part of me wishes for him to squeeze out his movie-turd and be done with it. Even Channing Tatum, who is attached to the boys-only reboot/sequel, has admitted the production is a mess.
Dan, let it die and lock the ectoplasm away in one of your ghost traps.
In other news, a university professor was murdered by a herd of cows. He escaped from the field but later died. A hoof mark was found on his chest. What’s particularly shocking is how the man died in 2013 but the story appeared in today’s newspapers, two years later. It’s safe to say they’re really milking this one.
Fire away in the comments below or tweet me @LeeLaments.
Lee the Lamentor