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Ah... I remember Metroid Fusion, owning the SA-X with the Ice Beam after so long felt so good.

It would have felt good, but it never happened. You got the Ice Beam from killing the SA-X, and used that to kill the Omega Metroid.

Nico's one of my favourite game characters as well, for pretty much every reason yahtzee mentioned. Although no need to hook up with Kate Nico... she's kinda annoying. How Roman holds onto val I'll never know.

Also, I'm way too late to mention the whole half-life 2 thing. But yeah, to restate it, that ending was a great use of over-powering the character. Which is why it was so weird to start episode 1 with the super grav gun again...

Yahtzee Croshaw:
Either that or his sexy accent.

Still not gay though?

This is why I keep going back to kill Mor┬┤ladim from time to time ;-)

But in IV, they managed to create a very human, very relatable character who could still believably lose his mind. A cynical veteran; so jaded, so completely broken by all the horrors he'd both witnessed and executed that absolutely nothing could shock him anymore, not even his own actions. That really spoke to something in me. Either that or his sexy accent.

Ohhh yes.. Completely agree.

Completely agreed about Oblivion. The scaling enemies not only made the game completely lack the satisfaction of being able to go back and swat low level mobs, it also killed off any sense that I was playing in a proper world. Instead of having individual areas with different monsters, each area just gradually blended into the same as I descended into dungeon after dungeon and rolled the dice to see whether I'd be fighting bandits, animals or undead.

I didn't mind the scaling enemies in Oblivion. It meant that there would always be challenging enemies with quality loot. It may be fun at first one-hitting old enemies but I'd have gotten bored wasting time on trash mobs with worthless loot. Not saying that he's wrong, just that it's not always the case.

Besides there are user made mods that can change it so the enemies don't scale with you so you do have a choice.

Yeah that was one of the things that I felt ruined Oblivion a little bit - the only thing that made you more powerful than the enemies you faced was getting some really kick arse items, like the ring of perfection. Even then the difference wasn't exactly staggering. Except if you combine items to get 100% spell reflection - mage casts some planet-consuming spell in your direction and it back fires an hits him in the face, classic!

Fallout 3 did it pretty well though. Even when I had all the best weapons and a level 30 character I still didn't really want to fight reavers or supermutant overlords if I could help it.

Speaking of sexy accents...

Seeing as how revenge is one of the 20 basic plot types, it's prevelance in the game industry is no surprise.

Following previous smartarse comments in regards to your statement on the essentials of mathematics, I follow up with the fact of how much you can accomplish in Chemistry and other fields of science by multiplying by 1.

Well from what I heard about your protagonist's personality you should try to get Nolan North to voice him.

My favorite gaming revenge moment of all time was in Half-Life 2: where you finally kill that motherfucking helicopter at the end of "water hazard." Helicopters nowadays have been in war games too much I'll agree, but the reason developers keep on putting helicopters in their games is that they are all trying to re-create that one moment with the original motherfucking helicopter in Half-Life 2. That thing hunted you, caused you grief at every turn, it dropped bombs in front of you when you were going too fast to steer out of the way, made sure you could never stop to catch your breath, killed you thousands of times and finally at the end of that boss battle it died. Never has anything been quite as satisfying for me and I was so ecstatic with sheer joy afterwards that I had to get out of my airboat and whack it with the crowbar a few times.
There are probably better revenge moments in other games. I mean, I haven't played much, I'm only sixteen. Nevertheless, for me, that has gone down in history as one of the greatest "fuck yea" moments of all time (along with stabbing ganondorf in the forehead at the end of The Wind Waker).

Another interesting read, my all time favorite book also happens to be The Count of Monte Cristo.

Oh, and if you want to really tear previously difficult things apart, there's always new game+ in a Super Robot Wars game, which lets you keep a lot of money and other stuff so that even though your level's still low you can completely demolish the entire first half of the game by bringing fully upgraded mechs into a fight that expects you not to have them.

Im pretty sure dragon age: origins did something similar where by the time you've finished getting your army all the darkspawn are dropped to level 5 (even lieutenants like alphas ogres and emissaries) and your 25 so at points (if your mage of course) they can throw 50 some enemies at you and they can all just be blown away with a single fireball, fun stuff

I was screaming Half Life 2 (as was a lot of readers) when I was reading it.

But another example is Portal. Not only do you kill her like you did to the companion cube you also you use her rockets and her portal gun to evoke your most deserved revenge. And to add to the suspense (like Half Life 2) it's on a time limit.

Captain Pancake:
The Count of Monte Christo? Isn't that the one by Dumbass?


Anyways, I agree with you on Niko. The idea of having the main character be a guy who's backstory could fill its own game gives Niko a depth that other characters just don't have. And as for revenge, I haven't really played any games that involve revenge, so I guess I can't comment on that.

I have a small suggestion regarding the Fun Space Game: collecting space junk in orbital space sounds much more interesting, not to mention more plausible. When spacecraft dunking it out in outer space at high speeds explode, all of their component parts tend to scatter around the galaxy until they hit something, even a planet in another solar system 500 years later, since there's nothing to stop them. So the clouds of debris floating in mid-nothingness that you see in Star Trek are a convenient, but ridiculously implausible plot device. Now, I'm not pushing for hard realism here, but embracing this kind of limitation can lead to internal consistency within the game.

For example, deciding that no battles are fought in deep space would make sense since there's nothing there to fight for, and it's not a battle anyone would show up for. This leads to a point-centric setting where population and trade is concentrated around planets, asteroids and space stations, which has many benefits - there is always a backdrop for the space battles which helps maintain orientation, and planets aren't that hard to draw, I suppose; orbital space even for us today is FILLED with debris just floating around, so big (and thick) fields of space junk become not only plausible, but expected; to defend orbital traffic from these debris, local station owners (or insurance companies) would hire some kind of space janitors to keep local space clean and maybe even patrol around for looters; planetary grids of "laser brooms" (a concept being developed even today) that burn the debris out of orbit would be established, which could make for exciting scenes of the pilot evading planetary defense systems; within orbit, ships would have to maintain some reasonable speed, which makes for more believable space combat (whereas in outer space you could engage even at near-light speeds, which would make battles last a fraction of a second); stealth (or at least misdirection) becomes a viable tactic, as ships can hide behind larger debris, behind the planet, mingle with other ships, and so on.

Okay, got carried away again. I read too much Atomic Rocket. But I think this would bring a welcome amount of content in space games. For zipping around the void of space you could always invent some kind of pilotable "afterburner" speeds that could be used to traverse interplanetary distances, but fights themselves there would be awkward. And a little empty.

Speaking of being kept busy, when will there be some sort of preview to your upcoming book? I'm an avid reader and looking forward to it. So much so, I'm impatient about the whole deal.

Kings to you.

The two words from this article that leap out at me are the last two. Yahtzee has repeatedly denied being gay but he's also repeatedly implied that he is. Does he get off on that or something?

So your hero is to be a jaded veteran, fallen from grace and grown cynical by the horrors he's both seen and perpetrated. A rebel who is 'willing to antagonize a huge, resourceful organization of armed fanatics despite having only a tiny salvage vessel to his name'.

I didn't much like Firefly, but my housemate and I watched Serenity the other night and I quite enjoyed it.

What? Those two statements are completely unrelated. Completely.

I wonder if anyone's made any references to Privateer in talking about FSG:TG.

I am going to go buy GTA IV, and beat it without killing anyone unessecary, always drive the speed limit and blah blah blah, just to make you wrong, 99.9% chance

That might be the best, most succint deconstruction of Niko I've ever read. Good job!

I in no way found Niko Bellic relatable. I found him to be a cardboard character who had to remind people he was a conscience-free sociopath in ways that didn't always jive with his actions. It's like a game where they constantly remind you your character is the greatest swordsman in the world, but he falls flat on his face in every combat scene.

I'm kind of surprised that he never mentioned the super gravity gun from Half Life 2, because when it comes to end game super badassery that moment did it right. Introduce a game breaking mechanic that comes into play for only a small portion of the game. Get to kill enemies that have been bothersome all game by just breathing on them, but not have it last for too long to get boring.

I hated those parts in Half-life 2, the enemies has literally zero challenge so I felt like I was just walking through the same combine hallway twenty thousand times to get to the end. I think the end of a game should be the most challenging part, they shouldn't let you breeze through the end just so you can get your revenge on the harder enemies.

Again, something doesn't make sence - first Yahtzee says that when the bag guys level up with the protagonist (like Oblivion) is lame, because you don't get any egde on them. But in the next paragraph, he says that a game needs to introduce stronger enemies as the player get access to stronger attacks. Isn't it the same as making the enemies stronger as the player gets stronger (like Oblivion)?? So which is it?

Again, something doesn't make sence - first Yahtzee says that when the bag guys level up with the protagonist (like Oblivion) is lame, because you don't get any egde on them. But in the next paragraph, he says that a game needs to introduce stronger enemies as the player get access to stronger attacks. Isn't it the same as making the enemies stronger as the player gets stronger (like Oblivion)?? So which is it?

I think what he means is that each new area should have stronger enemies, not that every area should have enemies that area as strong as you.

EDIT: That or a weaker enemy should have higher states, not really a stronger enemy pre-say.

*minor Grand Theft Auto 4 spoilers ahead*

Interesting to see Niko get a mention as a great example of character writing...I only got GTA4 recently, having only ever played the first in the series which, as I recall, had a fairly paper-thin plot. I'm not very far into it, but I am finding Niko fascinating - a broken man soldiering on through an alien land full of criminality and horror. But speaking as someone obsessed with how gameplay is used to tell a story, I'm not entirely convinced he works as a Grand Theft Auto protagonist.

See, there's a moment in the game where Niko snaps and murders a guy just for sleeping with his cousin's girlfriend. Before this moment Niko is a calm, reasonable man - unafraid to take dirty jobs if he has to, but never one to kill for personal reasons. It seems to be his perogative to stay completely professional and detached from his work. This moment of disproportionate revenge should be a major turning point for the character, but the problem is that the average player will, by this stage, have spent several happy hours shooting, stabbing, beating and running over pedestrians for kicks (I know I did) - which, of course, is exactly what you're supposed to do in these games, but it's totally at odds with the character. Niko does indeed seem to be a great character, but I can't help thinking he belongs in a much different game. The dialogue's telling you he's one thing, but the natural flow of the gameplay is telling you he's another.

Like I say, I'm not very far into the game and maybe I'm totally side-stepping the point. It just seems to me like that guy Faustin is a clear foreshadowing of what Niko is in danger of becoming; it's a much less interesting idea when you've already made him into a proper lunatic.

Agreed, every game with a level-up or upgrade system should have the Maplestory monster system-starting areas have weak monsters that can and will hand your spleen to you on a platinum platter with a little garnish during the first half hour, then you progressively move on to different areas with stronger monsters, but always have the option to go back to the weak monsters.

You know I see your, point on oblivion and it makes sense and stuff but you math equation forgot to take into account equipment. Nothing is more satisfying than pulling out the Umbra Sword and destroying lesser equipped guards and badits. And a lot of the enemies have level caps... revenge is good though sweet sweet revenge. mmmm

The Count of Monte Cristo is actually my favorite book of all time. Yes, it was well before Yahtzee mentioned it. Sigh. Having Yahtzee say something can instantly reduce that sentiment to an Internet meme, like a lolcats picture that you can paste over anything from everyday life.

The Count is a better vampire than 99.9% of vampires in anything, ever. And he's not a vampire. ... Just sayin'.

On the subject of revenge, I like getting revenge on villains after I've had both time to get to know them and time to want them dead. Revenge before then is pointless. The best revenge stories are gradual and building. For this reason I love the last mission in the original Xbox version of Splinter Cell: Double Agent. After all the crap you went through working with homicidal scumbags, finally you can get a little retribution by stalking and murdering each of them. Screams are muffled by your hand as you slide the knife between the ribs of yet another merciless killer, exacting your revenge in the name of all the people they've killed and wanted to kill. Not to mention the time you wasted and things you did while working for them.

Haha, I hate Oblivion becourse of that. It is fantastic game, but also so lame.

I wonder if anyone's made any references to Privateer in talking about FSG:TG.

FSG:TG needs to be some kind of cross between FreeLancer, Transcendence, and X3.

Well I concur with Oblivion... Enemies leveling up in parallel is incredibly frustrating as it takes any pretense of character developer or skill. Not to mention the world is simply dead..

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