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CarlitosWay Blog

Things That I Should Not See In a Video Game

Nothing is worse for a gamer than getting a game with high expectations and being let down by one of the many problems that affect us gamers. There are very VERY few games out there that can truthfully be said to be "Faultless". I mean, seriously, nothing is perfect. Neither are game developers. But there comes a time where we see something in a game and it just takes us too far. There is a laundry list of things I can speak about, but I will only list the ones I feel to be both: most prevalent and most aggravating.

Stupid Friendly AI


Many games out there boast amazing technologies for the enemy AI's. I remember when Lucas Arts announced their newest tech, Euphoria, which gave enemies self awareness. The debut of this tech was in The Force Unleashed, where Darth Vader's apprentice would grab and hurl both objects and enemies, using the Force. This new tech allowed Stormtroopers to be aware of what was happening. You toss a boulder at a Trooper, and he will attempt to dodge it, by either ducking or jumping out of the way. Grab him in the air, and he will try to straighten out to shoot you while he is floating. This is impressive stuff. Now I ask this: Why isn't this type of stuff added to FRIENDLY AI??

Im sure everyone has played some game that requires the help of a companion or other type of unit. And I am also sure that everyone has experienced that agitation when you see your friendly unit facing a wall, while getting shot by enemies. Or when you have to escort a friendly unit and instead of ducking for cover, they stand in the middle of the fray. I understand that it adds a bit of "difficulty" to scenarios where applicable. But I mean really, if one of the key ideologies of developers is to make the gameplay as believable as possible, why make stupid companions and brilliant enemies?? This also ties into my next point.

Ridiculously Intelligent Enemies


Now, I am all for the advancement of artificial intelligence, especially in the field of video games. However, I find it difficult to deal with clairvoyant enemies. The above mentioned tech was sheer awesome in TFU. It definitely added a separate level of detail to the reality of what is the world of Star Wars. The game wasn't all that great, unfortunately, but the tech was utter brilliance. However, when a ghoul or an undead something has the ability to tell which direction you decide to go before YOU even decided, that's just plain stupid. How did he know I was going to fake to the left? Did I miss the memo where the undead now had the ability to tell the future? This was ESPECIALLY prevalent in Demon Souls. I know, I know. Its SUPPOSED to be difficult. Im sorry, but my opinion of "difficult" is the concept of having trouble to get through something because it requires you to improve on your SKILL, and not your ability to repeat everything over again. Especially when even the smallest enemies can kill you with 2 hits. And even more especially when they predicted PRECISELY when to make those 2 hits. That is the reason why I stopped playing Demon Souls. I don't mind having to try again from dying. But when dying appears to be the only thing you CAN do, meh I think im ok.

Zombies


Yea I said it; Zombies. The most overused concept in video gaming history. Almost every developer/series has incorporated SOME form of the undead rising to devour people. You might not know it, but Zombieism is in almost everything. Take the Halo series, for example. While the Flood is not your typical form of Zombie, it does fall under the same concept: soldiers who die and get fed on by the Flood turn themselves into the living undead. That comparison im sure will bring a lot of controversy and discussion so have at it if you wish. Super Mario World 3: the grey Stone Koopas. You can jump on them several times, but after a few seconds, they continue to rise. The Scourge from the lore of Warcraft. Resident Evil is ALL about zombies. Even the newer Mortal Kombat game has a few challenges where you fight zombies. And don't even get me started on any newer games.

The reason why this subject bothers me the most of all in this discussion is not the fact that the concept is overused, but rather it the concept has been added to games where it has no premise. This is especially true with game Yakuza: Dead Souls. Now, i am a HUGE story freak. If a game's graphics and gameplay are blegh, but the story is phenomenal, I will give the game a play-through no matter what. I recently began playing the Yakuza series games, and I love them. The story is soo amazing, even the boring parts (playing hide and seek) still made me go on. So when I heard that Yakuza's 5th installment was going to be a zombie game… You can only imagine my disgust. As soon as I heard/saw the news, I removed Yakuza 3 from my PS3 and sent it back. In games that push REAL LIFE concepts are REALISM, you toss in ZOMBIES???

Rehashing


Why haven't game developers realized the fact that WE HATE REPEATING OURSELVES?! So many games out there make us see the exact same thing over, and over, and over again. One of the biggest let downs in my video game catalog was Dragon Age 2. When I realized that I had to run back and forth to the same 5 locations and fight the same 6 different type of enemies, I felt so discouraged. To make matters worse, "dungeons" were of the exact same template. I mean, its one thing if were fighting the Darkspawn… But they aren't even the primary enemies anymore. That right there is the only time I have ever seen Bioware drop the ball. Simplicity is good for casual gamers and children. I didn't buy a 400 dollar console or a 5000 PC to see and repeat the same damn renders. And don't tell me its because "you don't have the time or technology", because if you do ill slap you with a fish. I never want to play a linear video game and ask myself: "Wait… wasn't I just here?"

Disappearing Corpses


This one is a kicker. Its definitely a high ranking pet peeve of mine. Nothing feels worse than killing a large squad of clever enemies and having no evidence to prove you did it. It doesn't make any logical sense. If it doesn't do anything, like move or shoot, why take it out? Developers put millions into technology to make a rock look as much like a real rock as possible, and yet they suck the bodies out of the game when they die? What gives? I mean, there are only 2 logical reasons that can explain disappearing bodies: Either it is Judgment Day in ALL video games, or Obi-Wan Kenobi trained EVERYONE to become with the Force when they died. Its completely redundant. The only place I see that makes sense for the bodies to disappear (and this is only from a technical stand point) is in online games. And there are plenty of games that would benefit from left over bodies. A perfect example is The Force Unleashed. Wouldn't it make sense, being a Sith apprentice, to be able to toss the dead bodies of your enemies as projectiles? Even more so with the ability to turn targets into electric grenades. Another Star Wars game that suffers from this is Knights of the Old Republic. Its bothersome to see the body of the Rancor you just blew up disappear into thin air. Take a look at the Terrnetatek. When you defeat the one on Kashyyyk, his body instantly disappears, and he leaves behind a sack like bag, which contains its "loot". Where did that bag come from?

For now this is the list I have construed. I will add to it as time goes on. Feel free to add any input or ideas that you think apply.

BIG BIG Mess Up By Bioware!

So, i have some embarrassing news.

It turns out someone at Bioware dropped the ball. Today, Bioware was apparently preparing to send out more weekend Beta invites, when instead, they sent these 2 emails. Im not the only one who got this also.

First email

Second

Now i can GUARANTEE you i have never been invited to the Beta or any testing phases. And im not the only one. The community forums was exploding with thread upon thread of people getting the exact same emails, and freaking out. It got so out of hand, they had to shut down the website. Right now it is closed for high traffic. Bioware was first beginning to delete the excesive amount of threads created, but they couldnt keep up. Luckily, i sent in a ticket about it just before it crashed. I doubt ill get an answer, but it was worth a try.

EDIT: I will clarify as to what this is. This is an email, meant for a person who has infact been invited to the beta testing. It was sent to thousands, millions of followers. Naturally everyone assumed they had a Beta invite and nobody knew about it. Some people have found old emails in their spam, but the majority dont have them. People are claiming either someone hacked Bioware's network for phishing, or, Bioware is attempting draw more pre-orders by using these emails.

So apparently, someone at Bioware /facerolled onto the keyboard and sent a **** load of emails out, and the people are PISSED. Anyone get these emails? What do you all think is going on?

Bioware has finally released a statement on their forums regarding these emails. The last bit seems a bit shrewed:

"Earlier today, two e-mails were sent to members of theStar Wars: The Old Republic community. These e-mails were sent to a larger group than intended, and have caused some confusion in the community. We can confirm that these e-mails were from EA and BioWare and apologize for any confusion they have caused. Please note that receiving these e-mails does not affect your chances to be invited to test the game. Thank you all for your understanding!"

Still No Access to Fuse

I would never have thought i would say this, but i am having Fuse withdrawals. Its been a few hours since i could last log onto Fuse. For some strange reason, i cannot see jack. When i go to the main screen, or any screen for that matter, this is what i am seeing:

Whiteness.

It sucks because when i looked, i had about 8 notifications, and i could not see as to what they are. And as you know, i wrote a HUGE blog article a few hours ago. Im dying of curiosity to see what people commented, on Fuse. At first, i thought my issue was related to my blog article, and the argument i was having with that mentioned member. However, as you can tell, i can still contribute to GS, so im not banned or modded.

Unfortunately, i already messaged Boubou, yet i dont think he has determined the source of the issue. I tried posting on the forums, but the only comment i received was being notified that my thread was getting shut down. I had to move it over, and i have yet to see a reply.

Has anyone else had issues with Fuse recently? Or has heard of such problems?

Boundaries and Respect: The Rantings of a Gamer

Its unfortunate that my first blog entry in the GS world is about douchey trolls. Really, i wanted to make a blog about my own personal life, to introduce myself to my friends and followers, but its really gotten out of hand.

So this you can consider a rant, if necessary. Take it as you will. I will just blurt out exactly whats going through my mind.

I ask myself this every so often: "Do i like this?" Now this question refers to everything. I sit down and analyze what im doing or where i am at. I try to take into consideration what my situation is and whether or not i actually have to be present in it. I mean, nobody should be forced to do what they dont want to do correct?

Back to my question "Do i like this?". Lets assume i am at a bar, and so far the time has been a good time. Im drinking with my buddies, laughing and enjoying the atmosphere. After a few minutes, a fight breaks loose. Its a young Hispanic man against a Neo-Nazi fanatic, who started spewing hateful crap about Hispanics. Apparently, the young Hispanic man didnt take a liking to what this racist said, and decided to take matters into his own hands. The fight literally tears the bar apart. My friends and i obviously left the bar WITHOUT getting involved. We didnt sit there and complain about it, we didnt try to convince anyone to leave, we didnt stay PERIOD. We picked up our stuff and left. We were concerned for our own hides.

A few weeks later, my friends and i decide to head back to the bar, thinking that all is well. When we arrive there, everything seems to be ok. After an hour, a group of Skin-Heads shows up and begins terrorizing the place. Apparently, the first guy that got into the fight relayed it to his crew that this bar is a great place to terrorize. It didnt take long before they tore up the place. Police didnt even have a chance to catch any of them. By the time they got there, everyone had fled.

Here is where my metaphor (and real life example) comes into play: I asked myself that night "Do i want to keep coming to this bar, knowing that im not going to have a good time?" That is/was the million dollar question folks. Does it makes sense for me to be somewhere that i dont like? Is it reasonable to stay in a place that does things that you dont approve of? Would you go to watch a football game in the stadium, if you dont like football? Is it smart to buy/play a video game you KNOW you dont like?

So now my question goes to the public. Does it make sense for a person to follow a game on GS, just to **** and complain about it? If hes unhappy with the game, and is not going to buy it, why follow the game and post on every single entry for it? Why go through the effort of reading an article, watching a video, or viewing a preview if their minds are already made up for the negative? Finally, why do you sit there and **** **** **** What do you hope to accomplish? Turn people to your cause?

Im pretty pissed off people. I go to an article, to read comments sections and see how everyone is happy for a game and its new update. Seeing people come up and say "Oh this game sucks, XX is going to be better" really offends me. You know why? Its like going to church and blasting hate music. Its like going to a library to listen to pornographic sound tracks. And its just like going to a Star Wars convention and bragging it up about Star Trek.

People respect your own boundaries, why must you intrude on others? If i dont come into your house and say "Your food sucks", why would you come over to my house and insult my wife? Everyone has an opinion, yes this is true. I am a firm defender of the power of opinions. What i cannot defend is a person exploiting that power. Nothing is wrong with having an opinion, but there are time, places, and people to tell your opinion to. You dont go to a Lamborghini forum and say "Lambos are stupid cars". You dont go to a police station and say "F*** tha Police!". Its called KNOWING YOUR PLACE. If you dont feel that you are happy where you are, or dont like whats going on, GTFO.

You know what else doesnt help your cause? Accusing someone of something they didnt do. Everyone knows, when you commit a crime, the government has to piece together all of the EVIDENCE and bring it forth to firmly accuse a person of what they did. Other wise, your just accusing for the sake of doing it. When all you do is repeat the accusation, with no valid points of reference, no link to the evidence, or no witness to corroborate your story, your just being a TROLL. In real life, if you try something like that, its called Slander (or Libel, since its written). Its a crime, if you did not know. Unfortunately, the internet has been the perfect hive for scum and villainy.

Here comes the WHY part of my blog: Why are you writing this long blog, Carlito? Whats got you all messed up? Its quite simple friends. I have been trying to enjoy enthusiasm and questions from fellow gamers on a specific game. However, every so often, some people decide they have to go to EVERY SINGLE article on this game, and voice their opinion on how that game sucks, and the game they like is better. Know, you might say "Every single article Carlito? Thats a bit of an exaggeration." It would be, if it weren't true. Like i said before, everyone is entitled to their own opinions. I dont judge a person because they like another game better. No no no. I judge a person who thinks that coming into the zone where we are happy to read on something and talk trash with no evidence to back what they claim. I judge a person who thinks by spamming their for the game they like, they will increase the following for that game and diminish the following of another. It doesnt happen like that, princess. People will like what they like. Period.

Now the idea gets more serious. When you get upset, and begin to accuse someone of something they didnt do, then you know you wear the badge of TROLL HONOR. I was accused by a GS user of being a troll on Diablo 3 forums. This has been the FIRM basis of this person attacking my integrity. Every comment aimed towards me is first headlined by the same accusation. I, for one, am not a good fan of Diablo. So i dont even follow their games or the upcoming sequel (shocking i know). Thats first off. Secondly, i am a part of dozens of websites and forums. Most of them are car related, but the others are mostly for gaming. NONE of them is Diablo related. The only forums i am a part of (no longer) that has anything to do with even BLIZZARD was my guild site for WoW. And this was ages ago. Finally, this person in private gave me more specific details (albeit the whole message was a flame) about my "involvement". He accused me of trolling the Diablo 3 forums from back in 2007. That is why he cannot bring to me any evidence; because the posts are so old that the moderators deleted it. I will break to a new paragraph for this, because it is priceless.

First of all, as a moderator myself, i know that NOTHING in a forum gets deleted, unless A. Cleaning has to be done and B. Something very very bad happened. And most of the time, we dont delete... We hide. That way when the problem arises again, we have evidence to determine who is right or wrong. So this person can still in fact bring back those "posts" i made. But let us shorten the scope. Lets assume you cant find them. Im sure, with this person's awesome memory, he can remember the NAME of that troll. Surely, he can remember it and post it, so we can all see who that person is. I can trace back accounts on my forums for years, and even give you their IPs. This can easily destroy my credibility. Where is it? Its no where to be found. But lets take it back EVEN FURTHER. I was accused of being a troll on DIABLO 3 FORUMS, in 2007. Blizzard opened the forum to Diablo 3 a MONTH AGO. I first looked up the site, and searched for its oldest post. That happened to be a series of Sticky posts, belonging to an admin of Blizzard, which was posted in 8/23/2011. I still wasnt to sure about what i read, so i called up Blizzard (as i have a Battle.net account from WoW) to clarify. I asked the employee "When was the forum for Diablo 3 created?" He happily told me that it has been open for a full month. Just like i read. I then went to ask him if there were any other forums sanctioned by Blizzard for Diablo 3, that were open in 2007. He brought me to my next point. Diablo 3 was formally introduced to the public on Jun 28 2008. There was no way that a D3 forum would be open, a year before the game was even announced. I asked him if he was sure, he said as far as he knew, the guy accusing me is a TROLL. He went on to give me advice, which i will take right after my last sentence: "Dont feed the trolls."

So i leave you all with this. Do you agree with how i feel? Do i have right and reason to be upset? Shouldn't this type of behavior be prohibited on GameSpot? Please voice your opinions in a respectful manner.