Letters to the Editor: Better Than Before

Better Than Before

Each week we publish letters sent to us regarding previous issues and highlight particularly interesting forum posts. If you'd like to comment on an article directly, send your letter to editor@escapistmag.com.

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There is one Zombie game franchise where the humans are more of a threat than zombies: Dead Rising. The psychopaths in the game represent a far more difficult challenge than most of the zombies you come across. That's most certainly on purpose, and I appreciate the message of that design decision:

Even in our most dire hour, when all seems lost, and we're under attack from brain-hungry monsters, people will still be heartless, self-centered megalomaniacs hell-bent on twisting the circumstances to benefit themselves.

drivel:
There is one Zombie game franchise where the humans are more of a threat than zombies: Dead Rising. The psychopaths in the game represent a far more difficult challenge than most of the zombies you come across. That's most certainly on purpose, and I appreciate the message of that design decision:

Even in our most dire hour, when all seems lost, and we're under attack from brain-hungry monsters, people will still be heartless, self-centered megalomaniacs hell-bent on twisting the circumstances to benefit themselves.

Right, but that does play into my conclusion: that a zombie game that recognizes that normal humans are more of a threat, regardless of genre, makes that game more like other examples of the same genre that don't feature zombies. By that token, Dead Rising would be less a "zombie game" (assuming there is such a thing, really) and more of a "game with zombies in it".

A true "zombie game" would be a game that relied heavily on the unique nature of zombies: mindless, numerous, inexorable, implacable, unnatural. In a zombie movie, those things just create a context in which you have a traditional conflict: man vs man, man vs nature, man vs himself. In a zombie game that's actually about zombies, the conflict is player vs zombies. It's sort of weird to imagine a zombie game in which the boss characters aren't zombies, but some other sort of thing.

 

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