Saturday, 16 September 2017

Tau Plays Hotline Miami Part 1


Friday, 8 September 2017

The Journalist Skill Debate Again

Cuphead is an upcoming run and gun game coming out soon that I'm fucking excited for.  It looks like a cartoon from yesteryear and mixes that with challenging game play similar to things like Contra.  It looks awesome and I can't wait to get my hands on it.

However controversy has once again reared its ugly head however this time it has nothing to do with the game itself and more to do with the people playing it.  If you remember when DOOM was coming out and a dude called Arthur Gies played it and sucked massive cocks at it?  Well it's that AGAIN.  People are pissed off (rightly so) that so called industry professionals can't handle a fucking tutorial level and of course gaming press is shooting back by claiming people are over reacting.

I would recommend at this point to go look up the video, it's easy to find but I'm not linking it here because I don't want to give any of the idiots at Venture Beat views on their shit, embarrassing video.

Let me start by saying that I have ZERO respect for games journalism.  It seems to be entirely populated by fucking morons who don't know anything about games and are more interested in writing clickbait or sucking corporate cock rather than ACTUALLY helping consumers in any meaningful way.  I'm not the only one who holds this view either, go find any thread about the state of video game journalism on social media and you'll see a lot of people repeating that sentiment.

So big question of the day, do video game journalists have to be good at video games?

The quick answer is yes, of course they fucking do.  The job of a reviewer or someone reporting on industry goings on is to assist the consumer.  Therefore, you MUST know what the fuck your on about or your failing at the most basic facet of your job.  No one is asking journalists to be pro gamers winning The International every year or speedrunners with 5 or 6 world records under their belt but we ask that you at least know how to finish the tutorial of any game that you might come across. 

Imagine if you were trying to buy a car so you look up reviews of various vehicles.  Imagine then you find out that the person reviewing the cars CAN'T FUCKING DRIVE.  This is what the Cuphead/DOOM debate is basically all about. 

If you are an individual and you make a YouTube video or write a thing for a personal site, it's OK to suck at games or suck at just that one game.  For example I don't know shit about sports games  so if I gave a scathing awful review or did a terrible gameplay video of the new Fifa and then called it shit, it's clear that it's just one tossers opinion on the sea of piss that is the internet.  HOWEVER, if I was writing for a PROFESSIONAL news website in a PROFESSIONAL capacity and then couldn't even finish the most basic stage of a game with like, 2 button controls, of course people are going to question my ability to do the job.  In the case of Cuphead it brings into question everything that Dean Takahashi has EVER said because clearly the man lacks the basic motor function to hold a controller properly.

Which leads me to my other point about this.  Arthur Gies and Dean Takahashi didn't just show "bad" performances.  People can have an off day or just be not particularly geared towards a certain genre, that's fine.  These performances were INCOMPETENT.  The kind of game play I'd expect from a child who has never touched a game before.  No word of a lie, I could give my mother a copy of Cuphead and within 26 minutes she would finish the tutorial level.  Even my wife, who doesn't game and who has put in some FANTASTICALLY embarrassing attempts at certain titles would probably finish the fucking TUTORIAL of Cuphead in 26 minutes. 

You couple this with all the problems that games journalism has had over the years and now we're at a point where people have a problem trusting these websites.  One stupid prick writing for some stupid website Game Revolution said "If one plumber fucks up your taps, do you never hire another plumber?"  Which is a fair point in a way but he's missing the bigger picture and generally being an apologetic little bitch.  If a plumber fucked up my taps, I'd hire a different plumber FROM A DIFFERENT COMPANY.  So we now know that Venture Beat can't be trusted to pick up a control pad without probably choking on it, where am I going to go?  Gamespot? IGN? Kotaku?  Well these websites are also full of complete bullshit.  People are mad because, if we're using the plumber analogy, that ALL the plumbing companies in the towns are staffed ENTIRELY by inept wankers.

You want game news?  You want game reviews?  There are plenty of enthusiastic individuals on sites like YouTube/Twitch or various blogs and personal websites that you can get your info from?  This is ESPECIALLY important if you are into a niche series or niche genre.  If you're into dungeon crawling who are you going to trust?  Some cunt on IGN who played Grimrock once for 20 minutes and gave it an 8/10 or someone who has been playing games in that genre for fucking YEARS. 

Sort your shit games journalism.  Maybe if you hired some actual passionate people who aren't borderline brain dead, people wouldn't hate you.  Stick to writing about "social issues" for easy clicks and leave the games, to the gamers.

Tuesday, 5 September 2017

Video Games, the Olympics and stupidity

I think anyone who has even a passing interest in video games is aware of how much of a thing e-sports have become.  Most people are familiar with the big competitive games like League of Legends or Starcraft 2.  You probably have heard of certain big events such as Dreamhack in Sweden or the EVO fighting game tournament just to name a couple.

E-Sports have become so much of a thing that they are now being broadcast on TV the same way you'd broadcast any other sports.  When I was living in Sweden a few years ago I watched the Dreamhack Starcraft 2 tournament on the TV as it was happening live and on the plane to Rome two videos under the "TV Shows" section of the entertainment were finals from a DotA2 and Hearthstone tournament.

I think even ESPN are showing LoL, DotA and Hearthstone on TV and we also have Twitch which is basically the place to go for live feeds of tournaments so it's safe to say that the e-sports scene has come a fair way.

Then I hear that there's been talk of putting e-sports in the Olympics which is an interesting topic for discussion.  I can totally see why some would see e-sports having a rightful place in the Olympics but I can also understand why some people wouldn't want them there either.  But that's not what I'm here to talk about with this post.

This is Thomas Bach, the president of the International Olympic Committee.  If you take a quick look at his Wikipedia page you can clearly see he's a well educated man and some kind of ex-fencing beast that took home a gold medal in 1976.  But just because he's got some decent academics and can wield a foil like a pro doesn't make him immune from saying some of the stupidest shit I've ever heard in my life.  Here's a quote

“We want to promote non-discrimination, non-violence, and peace among people, This doesn’t match with video games, which are about violence, explosions and killing. And there we have to draw a clear line.”
[Source: https://www.sporttechie.com/no-violent-video-games-in-the-olympics-says-ioc-president/ ]

What in the name of fuck is wrong with this guy.  Video games are about violence, explosions and killing?  This is the kind of stupid statement I expect to hear from my elderly relatives that barely know what a computer even is, not the head of the IOC.  There are good arguments for and against putting e-sports in the Olympics like I said before but games being "violent" isn't one of them.

The olympic is host to a number of combat sports which could be seen as violent.  I mean this guy making this statement used to be a fucking Fencer.  I could easily make some kind of ignorant bullshit comment like him and say something like "We want to promote non-discrimination, non-violence, and peace among people, this doesn't match with fencing which is just stabbing and slashing at folks with bits of metal"

It sounds to me like Mr Bach is just an old, ignorant man who has a tired old view of gaming and doesn't want to do ANY research on the topic and expand his knowledge on the topic.  Go and watch any kind of analytical video on a game like Starcraft, Street Fighter or Counter Strike and you can easily see that there's so much more going on that just "violence, killing and explosions". 

There's no place in 2017 for stupid, ignorant and misguided comments like that.  Should video games be in the event? I don't know, but should they be disregarded entirely because of "violence"?  Hell no and that idea is so fantastically fucking stupid that my head might just explode violently and kill me in reaction to reading something that dumb. 

Thursday, 31 August 2017

Some Persona Fans Piss Me Off

I can feel the hate mail coming just from the title so hold your fucking horses and let me start with a clarifying statement.  I fucking love Persona 5, it was an amazing experience with both style and substance and is probably my personal favorite game on the PS4 right now with very little chance of being overthrown any time soon.  I'm also a big fan of Persona 3 and Persona 4, also great games that I sunk many many hours into and loved dearly.  Persona 4 Golden (and Dancing all Night) was pretty much the entire reason I bought a Vita.

But with that said, god DAMN some of you Persona "fans" on the internet piss me the fuck off.  Now I'm not talking about the legions of Weaboos that seem to make up the games fanbase, that's just sort of par for the course when it comes to titles like this and while they are cringy as fuck their slightly overzealous enjoyment of games in this style aren't really the problem.  My problem comes when I see posts from supposed "fans" shitting on mainline SMT or Persona 1 and 2.

First I think it's important to understand where I am with this series.  Way back when I lived in the UK, I remember my mum telling me about this game called Lucifer's Call on the PS2.  God knows how she came across it but it piqued my interest and I grabbed a copy and went from there.  This game blew my goddamn mind.  It was a bit like Pokemon but instead of shitty little woodland animals coming out of my balls and winning the day with friendship the whole game was basically a struggle to survive in a harsh world of demons that you had been thrown into (there's more to it than that, but for another day).  So I played the fuck out of that and then I don't remember playing much of the series until Persona 3.  It wasn't until that game that I realized that I wasn't just playing "Persona 3" but I was playing "Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 3".  So I did some research on the series at large and the obsession grew from there.

Now the reason I can't stand the people who shit on Persona's 1 and 2 is just because I'm a ponce.  Those games are harder and a bit dated but it just seems silly to shit over the first two games and then go around the internet touting yourself as "a fan of the series".  Let's face it folks, Personas 3 and up and designed for ages 3 and up.  Easy mode SMT for people new to the series, a nice little way to break you in.  It's a great place to start if you've never played a MegaTen game before (although I'd argue that Digital Devil Saga is better) but by ignoring the rest of the series because it's "too hard" for you is just a crying shame.  As Souls fans say, "Git gud" because you're really missing out on so much and if you just spent even a LITTLE bit of time learning the basics of these games even notoriously hard entries like Strange Journey won't seem so impossible.

The people who get my back up though are the ones who shit on SMT as a whole.  The ones who are elated to point out the fact that ATLUS dropped the "Shin Megami Tensei" off the front of Persona 5.  The ones who will type out pages and pages of stupid, backward reasons about why the series sucks and Persona is the only thing keeping it alive (untrue).  These people are a bunch of stupid fucks that need to shove a Mara up their gaping assholes.

I can get why one might say "I don't like these games, they are hard and dated" because they are.  I'm currently replaying Megami Tensei on the NES (not even Shin) and coming off the back of P5 GODDAMN it's taken some readjusting.  But to turn around and say that SMT sucks is just fucking stupid.  Without SMT there wouldn't even be a Persona and as much as you probably don't want to admit it you are just playing easy mode MegaTen.  Hell, you could rename Persona "Shin Megami Tensei USA" because that's almost what they are at this point.

For those of you who didn't get the joke
Persona as we know it today wouldn't even be a thing if it wasn't for a very specific Shin Megami Tensei game called Shin Megami Tensei If...

It wasn't a hugely successful or popular title but two things in this game were direct inspirations for Persona.  First was the high school setting and the second was the guardian spirit system but if you think Persona 1 and 2 are dated you don't stand a chance with SMT: If...  The point is, everything that you love about the later Persona games has been tried, tested and perfected throughout the rest of the series at various points.  Disliking it is fine but shitting on it just makes you look like a fucking moron.

If you've tried the games and felt that they are dated or too hard, I implore you to go give them another try.  Use a guide if you have to or play the next best entry game after Persona in terms of difficulty, Digital Devil Saga.  If you think that SMT in general just sucks and you aren't willing to try again or even accept the massive impact its had on your so called "favorite" game, then have Morgana put you to bed and then do the world a favor by never waking up.