The Story Player – Revelation or Delusion?

You’re gonna need a bigger whip…

I may have come to something of a crossroads in my games playing career – and it’s all thanks to Mrs Rolling Eyeballs.

I have been fighting through “Castlevania: Lords of Shadow” now for a good few months, eking out progress here and there, mostly thanks to my insistence on playing at a middling difficulty level.  The sense of frustration and failure which comes with each beat-down or flawed platform section has been palpable to the point of making me want to ditch games entirely.  With everything else that I want to do, my console gaming has taken something of a hit this year and I’ve basically been moving forward a stage or scene at a time without ever getting close to completing a level during a games session.

At that rate of progression, it would probably have taken me a year or so to finish “Castlevania: LOS” – which is not really satisfactory, is it?

That revelation, courtesy of my best half?  Leave hardcore gaming to the 12 year-old online trash talkers and the people for whom smashing difficulty levels is a badge of honour.  I like story and character more than I care for collecting every hidden feather or secret jewel in a level – so why shouldn’t I drop down my difficulty if it means getting to the end of the game?

My goodness, it’s almost as though achievements and platinum trophies in games don’t actually mean anything!

The sweet cheevos may have to wait – indefinitely, in some cases – but I might actually get to clear my backlog of titles sometime this century.  “Metro 2033” on Easy?  Yes, please, Mr Developer!  “DarkSiders” in ‘Cake Walk’ mode?  Don’t mind if I do!

I shall report back on this experiment as and when it begins to deliver tasty, tasty fruit….

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3 Comments

Filed under Gaming, Geekery

3 responses to “The Story Player – Revelation or Delusion?

  1. When I found my gaming time was dwindling I had to lower the difficulty of a few games I had been postponing and I gotta say, I didn’t mind it. There was at least one instance where it became too easy and I wasn’t enjoying the tedium, but for the most part it doesn’t really detract.
    Maybe I should go back and give Castlevania another try…

    • Yeah – for some games, you want to have the level of difficulty that you’re used to (especially if you’re playing the latest instalment in a series). With others – like “Castlevania” – I want to play through the story and not for imaginary hardcore bragging points.

      I’m taking this on a case-by-case basis, Andy.

  2. From a difficulty standpoint I didn’t find Castlevania: LOS to hard, but that style of action game is a genre I play often. For curiosity I dropped the difficulty down and it was a cakewalk. Seriously, the game is worth playing to the end, it has one hell of an ending.

    Metro 2033, abort abort abort!!!! That game pissed me off to no end. I never drop a game and I finish everything I start for the most part. This was the first game in a long time I abandoned. Not because of story which was way interesting or lack of atmosphere. The difficulty killed it for me. Even on the easiest mode I was getting destroyed. I’m not a big FPS player, but I know my bearings quite well, and this, fuck even thinking about it is getting me frustrated. Example: You shoot a guy 5 times in the face with a sawed off shotgun he’s supposed to die, right? Not in this game. And then getting constantly stuck on the environment, grrr. If you already spent money on it, maybe give it a crack, but don’t say I didn’t warn you.

    Darksiders=awesome sauce! Normal mode was a cakewalk, sooo. Give yourself a little challenge 😉

    More on point, I like difficult games. It’s not for achievements or trophy (even though well implemented ones can make a game pretty fun making a player explore the mechanics of the game deeper), but I like the challenge. example: Dark Souls, a game known for being notoriously difficult, is one of the best games I’ve ever played. While playing I needed to be on point at all times really immersing me into the game and its world. The level of concentration brought me to transcendental levels. And dying was always (almost, the game fucks with you at times) fair. You died because you lack the concentration.

    If you’re looking for great story or an atmosphere that don’t require much in the way of ‘skills’ may I recommend a few games: LA Noire- Crime solving and yelling at old ladies to a 1930’s backdrop. One of the most mature (not like in lots of cussing or tits), and best narratives in games period.

    Portal 2: First person puzzle game. My favorite game ever. If this game doesn’t make you laugh you have no soul. Starring Stephan Merchant and JK Simmons in probably their best roles ever. Playing the first one is not required, but it doesn’t hurt. Is also fun and funny as hell too.

    Anything from Telltale games: A Back to the Future game done right?! Yes sir! (a little self promo http://ametalstateofmind.com/2012/05/03/game-review-back-to-the-future-the-game-season-one/). Sam and Max, a fedora wearing dog and a psychotic bunny thingy solving crazy capers. Hilarious and well written. Reboot of Monkey Island, kicks just as much ass. And so on.

    To the Moon (pc only): Retro graphic rpg about 2 doctors that travel into the mind of a dying man to implant the memory of something he’s always wanted to do, fly to the moon. This game seriously made me weep like a little school girl.

    All of the above can be found for console or PC (with very light req.s) and their lengths are relatively short (LA Noire being the longest at about 30 hrs, To the Moon the shortest at 6 hrs.).

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