I've just been clearing out a few files and came across this little piece. I am not the author nor do I know who is. Someone posted this on another forum I frequent a few years ago and it made me smile. So much so that I think more people should read it:-
Recently on the internet I've been hearing a lot of conversation about something called "Real Life". Each time you mention a videogame or a movie somewhere on the internet, someone always has to go ahead and mention that you should try out Real Life.
So I finally decided to try this game for myself, and I have mixed reactions at best.
Let me first start by saying that Real Life's graphics engine is simply amazing. I especially appreciated the lighting effects and the day/night system. Real Life has an amazing resolution that you just don't seem to find anywhere else, and the physics engine will simply make your jaw drop with the moving grass and rippling waves in the water.
Unfortunately, the graphics and physics engines are about the only places where Real Life actually shines. It goes down hill from there, the job system is amazingly unbalanced, you start off by studying for a good portion of the first part of Real Life, earning "qualifications" and "degrees" that might go toward your eventual career. 'Might' being the keyword, as someone who has been studying to become one of Real Life's lawyers might find themselves waiting on tables, while a complete moron might become the next prime minister or president of one of Real Life's multiple countries. I will give the job system this much, you might find yourself changing your occupation numerous times through out the first part of Real Life, the most popular jobs among newbies by far seem to be "Fireman" or "Ballerina" (Fireman is not as it sounds btw, you work to put out fires, if you start fires you're considered an "arsonist" - we'll get into that later.) You must also supply your own Background Music via "CD/MP3 Players", which could take up to 1/10th of game play to actually achieve the currency for one.
Real Life has an amazing number of time consuming mini games that will probably distract you from your self chosen career, I've seen some players who prefer the "Comic book collection" side quest as opposed to one of Real Life's more mainstream goals such as "Mating" or "Financial Success".
Real Life's world is massive, with literally over a hundred countries all ruled by a different government, with different ideas for religion, trying to memorize them all would quite possibly drive you insane (note kiddies, you may want to stick to remembering something important, like the names of 300 pocket monsters) These countries, often lead by stupid AI, will often go to war overinane reasons, such as oil, or stepping on someone else's land.
There are rules in Real Life, and you can't do things to set back other players such as torching their property (the "arson" we talked about) or Player Killing them ("murder"). Let me also take this time to point out that the GM's of Real Life (the "police" in most countries) are often unfair and unjust, If you get caught breaking one of the rules of Real Life you get a record set against you, depending on the severity of the law you broke (or how much the NPC's decide they hate you) you get banned from the world and are locked up in private servers called "prisons" (be careful, Player Killers often lurk here) for any length of time from a few hours to the rest of the game!
I think this game is unfairly balanced in terms of difficulty as well. While you might have an easy time during the day, the difficulty level of Real Life suddenly jumps as night comes around. Real Life is a complex system in which your character depends on food and liquids to survive, and most of these food service stations are closed at night. Night also happens to be the one time in Real Life when you can suffer the most damage; trip over one "Gang Member" klass monster and it's all over.
You also have the ability to mate in this game. Pretty much one of the few ultimate goals in Real Life, the dating system is contrived at best. You can never tell what the hell it is your mate wants, ever. You can try "sexual acts" to please them, but most players of Real Life will find that the sex system causes more problems then it solves. I hope the creators of Real Life release a patch to fix this in the future.
You also don't have any real control over your character skins or their stats, though people are using hacks to change this such as the famous Michael Jackson, who managed not only to alter his appearance, but his gender as well. Speaking of which, I would like to see more species in later versions of this game. The animal kingdom, while still interesting, isn't nearly as powerful or popular as it once was. Maybe in future releases we'll see the rumored "Extraterrestrial life forms?" Only time will tell.
With a long intro sequence, nine months to be exact, you can tell Real Life is going to be a long game. I haven't finished playing it yet, but I'm told the game is pretty anti-climatic (you die? wtf?) and there really is no final boss, though you will fight a few major bosses along the way. Most of them are hard to beat, and will often plague you for the entire game. Nonetheless, I recommend everyone try Real Life at least once, if anything it will give him or her a reason to gossip over the Internet.
I recommend this for the true hardcore gamers with a lot of free time to dedicate to this game.
Overall, I give Real Life a 5 out of 10.