Being a Story-Seeker Gamer

So, I am playing the Citadel DLC on Mass Effect 3.  I love it.  Just wrote a post talking about how much I love it.  But as I play this, it got me thinking about something.  See, I don’t fit in.  Anywhere.  If there is a group of people, I don’t fit in there.  Even if I like what they like, I don’t like it for the reasons that they do.  It has always been the case.  No matter what I am into, I am into it for reasons all my own.  Not sure what that says about me, but still.  In all avenues of my life, the reasons why like things is all our own.

To that end, being a story-seeker gamer is hard, these days.  Why?  Because everyone seems to make everything about the components of games.  What’s the framerate on this game?  What’s the camera system like?  Does it have the same minute detail mechanics that other games have?  Here’s my question – who the fuck cares?!  For real, all that stuff is window dressing, to me.  For me, it’s story first.  Granted, if the controls are broken, then that’s a problem, but I just don’t get how people can get so worked up about minutia.  That’s what it is.

For example – I like The Evil Within.  A ton of people took a giant shit on that game, and I just don’t get it.  Like, it makes no sense, to me.  Sure, the side characters are kind of dull.  Did you know that the female cop is voiced by Jennifer Carpenter?  Yeah, I was surprised too.  Especially given the dull performance that the character gave.  But the levels were awesome.  The horror elements were old-school and worked.  The villain got more interesting as you learned his story.  I thought the game was quite something.  So you can imagine my surprise when I saw how many people were ripping it a new one.  What more do you people want?!

We live in an age where a lot of the big games are becoming dull as shit.  After Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag, I had such high hopes for the franchise.  But those were dashed against the wall.  I see so many diamonds in the rough in gaming, but they get shit on by people who say, “it has mechanics just like every other game in the genre.”  I am all for innovation, but isn’t there something to be said for an engrossing story?  Am I just behind the times?

So many people gave Gone Home a lot of shit.  People said it wasn’t a real game, that it was stupid and didn’t follow genre conventions.  That there was no difficulty.  I happened to like it.  It was a story about coming home.  Hence the name.  A lot of the nostalgia that came with that sunk in with me, and you know what – that was nice.  One of my favorite games of all time is Journey, a mesmerizing and beautiful game where you can’t die, you can’t fail a mission.  It’s all about visuals and telling a tragic story without a word of spoken dialogue.  Are we going to just condemn things like that, because they don’t involve running and gunning?  Really?

There are days, growing in number, where I feel like me and me are just not meant to fit in with the rest.  Like we are just condemned to be an outsider, to all groups.  I love a good story, no matter what genre it is.  Books, movies, TV shows, anime, video games.  I just want a good story.  Why does that not mesh with people?  I don’t know, and you know what – I don’t want to know.  I’m going to be kicking 30 in the ass soon, and it’s time we admitted something – we aren’t that exciting of a person.  When the highlight of your life is a good meal, good company and a good movie (or a bad movie that you can make fun of and laugh at), then you aren’t the most exciting guy in the world.

Fuck it.  We’re happy with that.  After all, we get one shot at this.  Let’s not waste it.

Until next time, a quote,

“If you had told me this morning that Traynor’s toothbrush would have helped me rescue to Normandy, I would have been very skeptical.”  -Commander Shepard, Mass Effect 3: Citadel DLC

Peace out,

Maverick

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