What defines a "game"?

Geez, so much to go over today. I guess I'll get the depressing stuff out of the way first. Obviously we've all heard by now that Heath Ledger is dead. It's certainly a shame, the guy was on a career high, due to explode in a few months with people already buzzing about his performance in the new Batman film. Beyond sending my condolences to his family and friends I really don't have much else to say on the subject. I just hope we don't see a steady stream of sub par movies Ledger was in that were never meant to see the light of day but would now be released to make a quick buck (see John Candy). Let's hope The Dark Knight leaves a memorable impression that will be talked about for a long time to come.

Also, damn you EA, I actually may have to start liking you again. EA virtually bitch-slapped the morons over at FOX news, who were blatantly lying about the supposed "extreme" sexual content of Mass Effect. Granted, anybody who takes anything FOX news says seriously obviously had a serious lobotomy, but this is the first time someone as big as EA has actually fought back and this quickly. I seriously hope the morons at Fox don't shut up because then a slander suit won't be far off. Bravo EA, and damn you for making me say bravo.

Moving onto the crux of today's post, of course I went ahead and picked up No More Heroes, but I haven't cracked it open just yet (mainly because I had forgotten to charge my Wii Remote). What I did spend my limited amount of charge with was a new & interesting title that also came out this week called Endless Ocean. This title seems to be dividing the gaming community. Either it's yet another example of banal non-gamer nonsense that is slowly dooming the industry; or it's a fresh, relaxing, almost transcendent experience that some people just don't get. It certainly sounds dull as hell on the surface. You dive and check out fish at various underwater locations. That's really it. There is the occasional objective, but you're free to do them at your leisure. No real leveling up, no enemies to kill, no princess/kingdom/world to save. Sure as hell doesn't sound like what we would normally consider a game. It doesn't even sound remotely interesting when described, but I honestly had a genuine fascinating and enjoyable time with what I've played so far. And the gaming community is always talking about how games need to grow and evolve and change if they are really to be considered in equal company with other mediums like cinema & music. That means weird experimental shit that is totally out there with an original premise has to break out and garner attention. It actually reminds me quite a bit of Animal Crossing, in that while there were certainly objectives to complete, you could literally spend hours just exploring, talking to townsfolk and seeing what happened at different times of the day. So, bottom line, don't be afraid to give Endless Ocean a chance, just broaden your definition of what a game can be and you'll probably enjoy it (although I probably am going to take advantage of the custom soundtrack option because the Enya-esque music just makes me sleepy).

That's all for today, but I'll leave you with a pretty awesome 5-minute video of Smash Bros. footage and will most certainly be back tomorrow with hopefully some NMH thoughts as well as expanded thoughts on Endless Ocean and the Devil May Cry 4 demo that is due to pop up.

1 comment:

Pelechati said...

I have never gotten the appeal of the smash bros games. Other than the characters being fun to beat up I just dont like the mechanics or anything about the fighting engine. I have a feeling I'm alone on this one.