Jimquisition: Lugoscababib Discobiscuits

 Pages PREV 1 2 3 4 5 6 NEXT
 

I'd say both Bioshock Infinite and Last of Us do have ludonarrative dissonance because the story is trying to tell use how great/moral/right/sympathetic the protagonist is but during the game the protagonist keeps killing everyone who opposed them, rather than try to resolve their problems in any other way. As long as the gameplay only allows the player to act as a mass murderer a narrative that shows this character acting any other way has a high chance of exhibiting ludonarrative dissonance.

erttheking:

bringer of illumination:
So are you just ignoring the fact that the whole "eating from trashcans" thing HAS in fact been brought up several times by several different people?

Your statement that "Nobody spent any time on this" is flat out false.

Bioshock Infinite is rife with Lubosnasra whatever, and much of it IS related to the violence.

One example is the fact that despite Elizabeth being aghast at the first murder spree of yours she witnesses, she never seems to care after that, not even when you break into the home of some innocent housewife and tear her fucking face off with your hook, Elizabeth just doesn't give a shit.

Well if that's the case, I'd have to ask if immersion is so important to you, why did you jam your hook into the face of an innocent housewife? To me it sounds like a person giving a second person a glass cup, where upon the second person smashes it with a hammer and shatters it before complaining to the first person about it being broken. If you didn't want it to be broken, then why did you try and break it in the first place?

So you're telling me, that a game being non-reactive and poorly thought out is my fault because I could just stay on the linear path and never interact with anything?

Sounds like a super cool story bro.

Your analogy is garbage and completely inapplicable.

I didn't "break" the game.

I did something within the games world which the devs clearly must have intended to be possible, if not then why is there a nice little custom animation for when you tear her face off?

Try to grasp this concept: Just because you like a game, doesn't mean you have to rush to it's defense whenever someone says something mean about it, it can still be a good game. It's not gonna run away and cry if I tell it that it did something poorly, and if you want to ignore it's faults all you have to do is close the tab and go play it again.

I don't think the violence in TR, Bioshock or TLoU was too intense (well, Lara could have done with a few less spikes through the head); I think the problem is that it's ceaseless. You continually kill logistically impossible numbers of people. It leaps over the ridiculous and lands into the implausible, as repetition turns a life-or-death struggle into an obstacle course.

Rote combat gameplay could probably make some point about violence, but I can't imagine it would be easy (and I've only ever seen Spec Ops try to do it). For most action games, ceaseless violence seems to be the objective - if it's fun, original, challenging and well-balanced, the game shines even if the story is an afterthought. But when action games become heavily character- and narrative-driven (as many recent action titles have been), much like RPGs, then players start to demand that the themes and conventions of the narrative be reflected in the gameplay. And ceaseless combat cannot do that. It's like playing Beethoven's 5th on just a cowbell.

RPGs deal with this in several ways. Combat may occur inside a bubble-verse, with entirely different (often abstract) mechanics and presentation from the rest of the game. Tactical or turn-based mechanics make even a small enemy group take a lot longer than shooting a terrorist in an FPS. There are often several ways of interacting with the world (Suikoden II had three combat systems--party turn-based, strategic army clashes, and personal duels--and a heap of other activities like investigation, castle renovation, gardening, dancing lessons, dramatic martial-arts cooking duels...), and several layers on which the world can be explored. Even in the most seamless RPGs like Bethesda's, there's often a "click" when the world switches gears from interaction to combat.

I'm not saying modern action games need several other mechanics in addition to combat. I like ceaseless-violence-obstacle-courses. But they are being stretched at the seams by narrative-driven games, because their core mechanics simply lack the range to transmit all the nuances of a well-crafted story. The game ends up looking like it's ignoring the narrative or distracting you from it, which is what most of the Bioshock-griping was about - wanting to spend more time with the characters and the general population, and not in obviously limited combat arenas.

bringer of illumination:

erttheking:

bringer of illumination:
So are you just ignoring the fact that the whole "eating from trashcans" thing HAS in fact been brought up several times by several different people?

Your statement that "Nobody spent any time on this" is flat out false.

Bioshock Infinite is rife with Lubosnasra whatever, and much of it IS related to the violence.

One example is the fact that despite Elizabeth being aghast at the first murder spree of yours she witnesses, she never seems to care after that, not even when you break into the home of some innocent housewife and tear her fucking face off with your hook, Elizabeth just doesn't give a shit.

Well if that's the case, I'd have to ask if immersion is so important to you, why did you jam your hook into the face of an innocent housewife? To me it sounds like a person giving a second person a glass cup, where upon the second person smashes it with a hammer and shatters it before complaining to the first person about it being broken. If you didn't want it to be broken, then why did you try and break it in the first place?

So you're telling me, that a game being non-reactive and poorly thought out is my fault because I could just stay on the linear path and never interact with anything?

Sounds like a super cool story bro.

Your analogy is garbage and completely inapplicable.

I didn't "break" the game.

I did something within the games world which the devs clearly must have intended to be possible, if not then why is there a nice little custom animation for when you tear her face off?

Try to grasp this concept: Just because you like a game, doesn't mean you have to rush to it's defense whenever someone says something mean about it, it can still be a good game. It's not gonna run away and cry if I tell it that it did something poorly, and if you want to ignore it's faults all you have to do is close the tab and go play it again.

What I'm trying to say is that there is never ever going to be a game where the immersion never gets broken because of the interactive element. When I was playing my friend's copy of Tomb Raider, the first thing I did was start jumping around like a mad man screaming "I'M BREAKING THE IMMERSION" because gamers will always, ALWAYS do things like that. Frankly the only way to make it so that immersion never gets broken is to make the game linear as Hell, and I think we don't want that. People in games will never react to you jumping up and down in front of them randomly, they'll never react to your kleptomania, I'm with Jim in that I don't see why violence gets singled out.

I'm not quite sure where you're getting the impression that I'm the type of person that can't that my favorite game being criticized. I personally think the ending to Bioshock Infinite was kinda iffy. I just disagree with your criticisms and I am pointing out why.

The word is definitely being misused particularly in the cases of last of us and bioshock infinite which both have different problems neither of which relates to violence. The flaw undermining bioshock infinite is that it feels the need to keep reminding us that we are playing a bioshock game particularly with the scavenging and vigors. Bioshock had a scavenging mechanic that made sense for a city that is in shambles like rapture but doesn't make sense for a thriving city like Columbia. Bioshock had plasmids which were both a great defining gameplay feature and central to the downfall of the city as a whole whereas in infinite the vigors are just sorta there and no one uses them other than booker. The problem with the last of us, aside from the combat being extremely dull and repetitive, is that enemies would never attack your allies even while they are standing up in the middle of a battlefield talking to you

erttheking:

bringer of illumination:

erttheking:

Well if that's the case, I'd have to ask if immersion is so important to you, why did you jam your hook into the face of an innocent housewife? To me it sounds like a person giving a second person a glass cup, where upon the second person smashes it with a hammer and shatters it before complaining to the first person about it being broken. If you didn't want it to be broken, then why did you try and break it in the first place?

So you're telling me, that a game being non-reactive and poorly thought out is my fault because I could just stay on the linear path and never interact with anything?

Sounds like a super cool story bro.

Your analogy is garbage and completely inapplicable.

I didn't "break" the game.

I did something within the games world which the devs clearly must have intended to be possible, if not then why is there a nice little custom animation for when you tear her face off?

Try to grasp this concept: Just because you like a game, doesn't mean you have to rush to it's defense whenever someone says something mean about it, it can still be a good game. It's not gonna run away and cry if I tell it that it did something poorly, and if you want to ignore it's faults all you have to do is close the tab and go play it again.

What I'm trying to say is that there is never ever going to be a game where the immersion never gets broken because of the interactive element. When I was playing my friend's copy of Tomb Raider, the first thing I did was start jumping around like a mad man screaming "I'M BREAKING THE IMMERSION" because gamers will always, ALWAYS do things like that. Frankly the only way to make it so that immersion never gets broken is to make the game linear as Hell, and I think we don't want that. People in games will never react to you jumping up and down in front of them randomly, they'll never react to your kleptomania, I'm with Jim in that I don't see why violence gets singled out.

I'm not quite sure where you're getting the impression that I'm the type of person that can't that my favorite game being criticized. I personally think the ending to Bioshock Infinite was kinda iffy. I just disagree with your criticisms and I am pointing out why.

You talk as if fixing the problem I pointed out would be hard.

It would literally be a matter of recording a SINGLE fucking voiceline for Elizabeth when you murder a civilian for no reason.

Boom, 100 dollars spent max, immersion substantially improved.

It's not hard.

Vivi22:
Honestly, I've never seen anyone mention this at all until Jim's video just now. It certainly wasn't the biggest thing that most people were complaining about. Hell, if even Jim wasn't aware of it, or at least wasn't aware of many mainstream examples of it, then I feel pretty safe saying it wasn't even a big thing that the majority of the gaming press thought to bring up and run with.

Extra Credit brought up this point in their video about how using things from previous games (scavenging) doesn't make sense when the setting changes from derelict city full of crazy people to functioning city with working shops.

Aside from your one example there of killing an innocent person (though I don't recall this happening aside from my ending up in some woman's home with police in there ready to kill me and having to fight them when they saw me), it's easily, and quite rationally, explained by the fact that if they don't fight these people and find a way out of the city, Booker will die and Elizabeth is going back to her tower for the rest of her life.

Now maybe you missed the fact that she really, really, wanted to get away from there, but it's not something that was exactly subtly hinted at during the game.

So you're saying that Elizabeth doesn't object to hundreds of people being killed in front of her as long as she's able to escape. That makes her seem somewhat psychopathic.

If Elizabeth questioned whether so many people needed to die just so she could leave, or was able to give a valid reason as to why they couldn't use her tears to escape then she could come off as sympathetic. However as long as she has no objections to Booker killing almost everyone they meet it's hard to sympathise with her.

Vivi22:

bringer of illumination:

Bioshock Infinite is rife with Lubosnasra whatever, and much of it IS related to the violence.

One example is the fact that despite Elizabeth being aghast at the first murder spree of yours she witnesses, she never seems to care after that, not even when you break into the home of some innocent housewife and tear her fucking face off with your hook, Elizabeth just doesn't give a shit.

Aside from your one example there of killing an innocent person (though I don't recall this happening aside from my ending up in some woman's home with police in there ready to kill me and having to fight them when they saw me), it's easily, and quite rationally, explained by the fact that if they don't fight these people and find a way out of the city, Booker will die and Elizabeth is going back to her tower for the rest of her life.

Now maybe you missed the fact that she really, really, wanted to get away from there, but it's not something that was exactly subtly hinted at during the game. So no, I don't agree with the idea that this is dissonant at all. You can quibble as much as you want over the whole thing being a bit rushed, and maybe they didn't spend enough time showing her getting over her initial disgust to ensure their survival, but the reality is that the explanation for why she would continue on with Booker and actively help him is readily explained by information contained within the games narrative.

On a side note, it's kind of funny that Jim can do a whole episode dedicated to why these arguments are wrong, and people are still trying to make the same arguments.

^This. That, and it's wrong that Elizabeth suddenly stops being disgusted by violence, she doesn't. Elizabeth is disgusted about the violence throughout pretty much the entire game, she just doesn't voice it incessantly at every available opportunity. I'd say probably the most obvious example is the disgust quotes she throws out during the fights, especially when the player does something excessively violent like using finishers.

Oh, and Booker scrounging for ammo, food or whatever isn't Ludonarrative Dissonance, he has perfectly good reason to do this that's justified in the narrative. Namely, he's an enemy of the state that's being actively searched for, it would be ridiculous of him to walk up to any old person and buy or beg for the crap he needs from them since they might raise the alarm. This is most effectively shown during the scene where he's trying to get a ticket for transportation and the guy will STAB him and hit the alarm if he just tries to play it cool. Early on it's understandable that people wouldn't recognize Booker and might be willing to give or sell him stuff, but why take the chance? Later in the game everybody knows his face so it's even more justified.

A LOT of people brought up the oddity of Booker eating out of garbage cans, in fact every other web comic about Bioshock Infinite seems to be about that very subject.
When it comes to the violence I think a lot of people were thrown off not by Booker's violence, but how easily Elizabeth overcomes her horror and distaste of the violence she sees him commit and starts throwing him ammo so he can blow some more heads off.

*Citizen Kane clap*

I agree 100%!

I remember hearing and reading glimpses of discussion around the over-the-top violence a few weeks after Bioshock Infinite came out and how the game play, more specifically the violence, didn't flow with the overall story and narrative of the game, same for Last of Us both before (the E3 demo with the guy getting his head blown off after pleading for mercy having lost the struggle of the main character) and after release both times annoyed me as the violence seemed appropriate given the settings.

I mostly ignored it as non-core gamers that are not as accustomed to games that feature such brutality featured in both previously mentioned games.

Tomb Raider's story and game play however more appropriately deserved it's uncanny valley lugoscabib discobiscuts and that it was clearly 2 different tones of "emotion" during cut-scenes and gameplay. One example springs to mind is hunting the deer in the first "area" of the game and how the game points out how grossed out Lara is about having to kill and mane a deer and then from then on NOTHING, skinning deer or other animals doesn't feature an spec of emotion or distaste for any actions performed in game.

Tomb Raider is what started the charade of discobicuts lugoscabib in games that were doing gameplay-styles in context with story fine...

I also find it crazier that I can think of examples of games that have more severe laguoscabiib discobicuts....

I disagree with Jim on his points about Infinite on this one. Although his core point is fine, in that it's wrong to claim luconarcissist distynance just because a game is violent, to use that to defend Bioshock is a bit of a strawman. Nobody I saw that used that criticism of Infinite claimed it was the violence alone that caused a problem, but that it was the reduction of an entire complex world to one of hyper-violence and mindless slaughter.

The problem with Bioshock is that once you got out of the touristy areas with interesting events occurring, you found yourself in entire blocks of the city with naught to do but murder everyone in sight. All of a sudden the seemingly kind on the surface but evidently misguided racists are nowhere to be found, and all that are left are brutal psychopaths with no agenda but to murder you. Infinite shows you two sides of a world, but almost never allows the two to mix and gives you a single, bloody, way to interact with that world.

That, along with other examples such as Elizabeth happily opening up tears to machine gun turrets after that time she gets disgusted with you for all the murder, makes the lurgynanative disconance complaint a valid one. Sure, you can argue that this criticism is incorrect as you do in the video, but to reduce the criticism simply to people crying that they don't like violence in a game is oversimplifying it.

Zachary Amaranth:

Goliath100:
I want direct examples!! For all the alleged criticism of Bioshock and The Last of Us.

The Tomb Raider one wasn't enough?

Howabout Final Fantasy VII's big spoiler, where even the most devastating move in the game is only a KO, but a single sword is an instant permanent kill because ponies. Hell, most JRPGs do things in the cut-scenes that are impossible(in gameplay) at best, and often fit into this trend because they contradict the gameplay. Or vice versa.

I know what LD is. I want a example of someone saying the B:I was too violent. Because I suspect Jimmy is using a straw figure. You see, there is a problem with violence in B:I: The NPC no not react to it in any real way.

Errant Signal did a pretty good video highlighting Infinite's flaws.


To add my own two cents (spoilers and lots of ranting):

immortalfrieza:
^This. That, and it's wrong that Elizabeth suddenly stops being disgusted by violence, she doesn't. Elizabeth is disgusted about the violence throughout pretty much the entire game, she just doesn't voice it incessantly at every available opportunity. I'd say probably the most obvious example is the disgust quotes she throws out during the fights, especially when the player does something excessively violent like using finishers.

Does Elizabeth ever question whether her wanting to escape is worth all these people being killed or worry about how safe she'll be with a man who's killed hundreds of people?

Oh, and Booker scrounging for ammo, food or whatever isn't Ludonarrative Dissonance, he has perfectly good reason to do this that's justified in the narrative. Namely, he's an enemy of the state that's being actively searched for, it would be ridiculous of him to walk up to any old person and buy or beg for the crap he needs from them since they might raise the alarm. This is most effectively shown during the scene where he's trying to get a ticket for transportation and the guy will STAB him and hit the alarm if he just tries to play it cool. Early on it's understandable that people wouldn't recognize Booker and might be willing to give or sell him stuff, but why take the chance? Later in the game everybody knows his face so it's even more justified.

Scavenging makes sense after Booker is a wanted criminals and everyone knows his face. Before this it makes no sense and I found myself wondering why he doesn't just cover up the mark on his hand when he tries to buy things.

GonzoGamer:

While I don't think that the "score" (whatever that's worth) should've been lowered for that (raised maybe), I am glad it was brought up in the review. At least now I know I wont be playing as 3 tortured souls who shed a tear every time I run over some random slob on the sidewalk.
And as annoying as that was in GTA4, I wouldn't accuse that game of having ludoscaboobidibob discobiscuits because you could play the character that way; try to control yourself so it seems like Niko has a new found respect for life. But really, who wants to do that in a gta game?

You are correct that GTA4 didn't have to have LD, because you could play it the way Nico wanted to and just not kill that much. But no matter which path you take, in the end you do have to kill a lot of people to get to the end. Greg also apparently doesn't understand that one of the biggest criticisms GTA4 had was that the game wasn't as much of a parody as the others in the series. Nico was one of the first MCs in GTA you were really supposed to sympathize with, and people didn't like that, because up until then you were playing some of the more amoral protagonists in gaming.

GTA4 I believe showed Rockstar that people don't want a serious story in that series; they want to beat hookers and steal ambulances. But it's hard to do that and still have a story where the character isn't a raging psychopath. So, Rockstar seems to have found a happy medium, and give people three people to play and revolve the story around... one of which just happens to be a raging psychopath. So now all your violent urges can be released on Trevor, while the more cerebral gaming can be done with one of the other two characters, and now there's no LD and everyone can be happy.

I get the feeling that Jim didn't actually understand the argument. From my perspective the claim of dissidence for Bioshock infinite isn't because its violent, its because that's the only option and your not fighting zombie analogs, your fighting cops and protesters. They made a world that feels lived in but for the most part your only interaction with it is with bullets. Its one thing when you mow down 20 zombies and see more coming, its another when you shoot 20 cops and they just keep coming and don't react at all to seeing their comrades casually killed. Also, I have seen people talking about running around eating shit out of the trash in infinite, so I don't see how that's a good example to toss in peoples faces.

I get the feeling you didn't research this much, Jim.

You know, I just realized that Rockstar may have just created the embodiments of the psyche's three parts in GTA5. Franklin is the Ego, Michael is the Super-Ego, and Trevor is the awesome Id. Which character you want to play is very much dependent on what part of your brain you want to listen to at the time, but one of them will always work. That's rather ingenious of them.

I happen to actually like the term ludo-narrative dissonance. I used it quite vehemently to describe Tomb Raider, a game that suffered overall for it.

I did not use it in any way shape or form to describe The Last of Us or Bioshock: Infinite, two games that most certainly did have cause for hyper violence. In both games there are characters that react negatively when the player character kills someone in a particularly brutal way. No one challenges Lara, nor do they find it odd that she's so proficient with a weapon or can survive in the region of 500 blunt force traumas.

/rant

Don't hate the word, hate the people who misuse it.

Hargrimm:
Errant Signal did a pretty good video highlighting Infinite's flaws.


To add my own two cents (spoilers and lots of ranting):

Extra Credit also points out some flaws in the mechanics:

While Smudboy explains what's wrong with the story:
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLiWzMOLohpMm7SHPvti22PeAUfS13oEfp

uanime5:

Does Elizabeth ever question whether her wanting to escape is worth all these people being killed or worry about how safe she'll be with a man who's killed hundreds of people?

Probably, it's been a long while since I've played Infinite, but even if she doesn't, why would she? People are TRYING TO KILL THE TWO OF THEM pretty much constantly throughout the game, why would she possibly question that doing whatever is necessary to get away from these people and her psychotic father is justified?

uanime5:

Scavenging makes sense after Booker is a wanted criminals and everyone knows his face. Before this it makes no sense and I found myself wondering why he doesn't just cover up the mark on his hand when he tries to buy things.

Uh... maybe it's because he just doesn't think of it? With a lot of fiction I've noticed that people like to say they would have done something the character doesn't, but it's always bunk. It's easy to CLAIM you would have done something, but you are not them, you aren't really in their situation and you do not think like that person, so there is no one that can honestly say they would have done differently.

I think the problem I had with the violence in Bioshock Infinite is that it was a little too gruesome for the general swashbuckling action feel of the rest of the combat. But that's just gameplay design choices conflicting with other gameplay design choices. It's worth thinking about, but it's not ludoflaraniv skiptlefliss.

Fun episode Jim. I rather agree with everything but the trash cans, but only on the grounds that I have, in fact, seen people talk about it before. You're right in noting that the people ranting about the violence 'issue' did seem to be there, in louder and greater number, though.

bringer of illumination:
I did something within the games world which the devs clearly must have intended to be possible, if not then why is there a nice little custom animation for when you tear her face off?

So, you take all the dark side options in Star Wars games just because they're there then? They're possible, and thus clearly intended so you're obviously supposed to take them even though you have the option to not.

SlightlyEvil:
I think the problem I had with the violence in Bioshock Infinite is that it was a little too gruesome for the general swashbuckling action feel of the rest of the combat. But that's just gameplay design choices conflicting with other gameplay design choices. It's worth thinking about, but it's not ludoflaraniv skiptlefliss.

It didn't have a swashbuckling action feel though. The feel of the city was one where people had their nasty, dirty and quite violent nature under a nice shiny coat of paint. They were there to hide what was always there, and that Booker, a violent man by nature, simply brought out of the city that . . . was run by an equally violent man. Anyone that's finished the game understands the true depths of that parallel, as well as the contrast of a version of a violent man that hides it under a veil versus one whose nature washes across the streets.

People can make the claim he's fighting cops, for instance, but these aren't actual real life cops put on the street to protect you. These are fictional cops whose purposes, on the surface, are similar but are actually brainwashed fanatics, and extreme racists. It's also notable that Booker doesn't throw the first stone, he's attacked, and by one of these cops, before he raises a hand to anyone in Columbia.

Not the only themes in Infinite, by far, mind you, there's more going on that that.

Man, you kinda said everything I could possibly have said about the subject. I do get annoyed that so many games go straight for the violence instead of exploring what other things you can do with games, but if you're going to criticize a game (or book, or movie, or whatever), then at least use the proper terms for it.

Worgen:
I get the feeling that Jim didn't actually understand the argument. From my perspective the claim of dissidence for Bioshock infinite isn't because its violent, its because that's the only option and your not fighting zombie analogs, your fighting cops and protesters. They made a world that feels lived in but for the most part your only interaction with it is with bullets.

The way I see it is:

Its one thing when you mow down 20 zombies and see more coming, its another when you shoot 20 cops and they just keep coming and don't react at all to seeing their comrades casually killed.

I'd say pretty much every game that features human enemies suffers from that problem.

silly me, i thought the issue with infinite was that the shooting was not very good and that a lot of mechanics(like the scavenging) don't make sense in a world that is not already fallen to pieces

I disagree slightly about Bioshock: Infinite. The reason the violence feels off is because a good chunk of the game is devoted to exploring the conflict between the Founders and the Vox Populi, with the conclusion Booker and Elizabeth come to being "Both of these guys are horrible and violent, and they're both in the wrong." Implying Booker and Elizabeth are in the right, even though Booker kills more people than any of them.

Hmm I understand that it can be frustrating, but as usual you are going too overboard with the topic in one direction and missing the point. To be clear, Ludo-Narrative Dissonance literally means a conflict between the game and the narrative of such game.

Many people have pointed out the Ludo-narrative Dissonance in Bioshock, present in the fact that you steal coins and eat food out off trash cans as you well mention, but ALSO present in the fact that for example, Elizabeth turns invisible to the enemies in combat, which is specially odd when she is supposed to be what they are searching. Of course having to escort her could be annoying, but it still conflicts with the world that they have built.
There is also a Stylistic narrative dissonance, Elizabeth has highly caricaturesque features (its clear to see that her original design fit better with the tone of the game, but was less charming), but the world presents very gruesome violence, she is reminiscent of a Disney character while the world is full of over the top violence. There are also smaller details, like the fact that there are weapon and vigor vendors all over the place, but only versy specific militarized forces seem to have any access to them, just opposite to plasmids that composed an integral part of Rapture, Vigors seem superfluous and wanton. Similarly, the almost arcade-ish, seemingly endless waves of enemies that you have to kill in sections that tend to lose focus of the serious story that the game is trying to tell, even if it is a story about violence and trauma (although arguably, it is more a story about loss than anything else JIM).

In fact, for me, this was the biggest issue, not directly about violence but about the structure of the game. Bioshock Infinite has a terrible problem with things being there"just because", none of the story really leads anywhere until the ending, where the game actually shows its cards. And the issue is that at that point, in which most of the combat is done ( and 10+ hours have passed) you realize that there is a profound disconnect between the story the game wanted to tell, and how it actually came around to tell it.

Of course, none of this means that the game is bad, and a lot of it is clearly designed to make the game more fun and enjoyable. But that is the point of the criticism, we are reaching the stage in evolution in which sometimes "game-like" design decisions are playing against the narrative of a the game as a whole, and it is a very real conflict. Dismissing it all because "people are trying to sound smart" is a pretty defensive and plain silly reaction.

In fact, I'd say that we shouldn't be so defensive in general. Even though I LOVED the hell out of TLOU, I agree that in some sections there was a lot of ludo-narrative dissonance, some related to violence and some to other issues.
-mild spoilers- For example, the section where you fall into the refrigerator trap, or the section where you take over the sniper rifle and provide cover fire, both give you endless ammo for you, of course this is not extremely important, but for a game that worked so hard to sett a sense of scarcity and urgency, these bits did damage the overall appeal. In the same way, occasionally there are a number of areas that you can inspect thoroughly, only to find that enemies will spawn out of nowhere only after you press a switch (or open a door, or turn on a generator), shattering the illusion of the organic world and turning it into a chain of interconnected monster closets.
And finally, for me the most offensive aspect of ludo-narrative dissonance in the Last of Us, was the collectibles, the fact that the game is clearly heavily invested in you following a story but still puts hidden collectibles in even some of the most dramatic passages of the game, creating a severe conflict between following the story or following the game.

I know this is a generalization, but all in all, it seems that since games are delving into more and more serious topics narratively speaking, we are still stuck in some very standard Game-like mechanics that seem to be placed in there to please the "target demographic". Personally I do think that the excess in combat and violence in Bioshock did dilute the final punch of the story, and the more gamey The last of us became, the more it pushed me out of its otherwise brilliantly crafted universe. And it's not bad that people are recognizing this, it's something developers have to tackle, so even if some people use the term for basically anything, it doesn't mean that it doesn't have some truth to it.

I'd be interesting in seeing some of what Jim is talking about here. 'cause the only one I can think of is the EC episode, and there reasoning wasn't just "violence".

Link to the episode for those interested.

http://penny-arcade.com/patv/episode/in-service-to-the-brand

Thanks Jim, now you got me thinking about dancing bread.

Also, that suit is snazzy.

This was an especially good episode.

Glad you're taking the time to shatter these terrible misconceptions that have been roaming the net the last year or so.

spartandude:
While i cant speak about Last Of Us (i havnt played it) the issue i see brought up when refering to bioshock infinite is not that its violent but that when Elisabeth sees you murder she freaks out at you (very understandable) but less than 5 minutes later shes throwing ammo at you and such and enabling you to kill, thats where the issue comes in.

Nope, there's no issue there. You forget that after she freaks out at you for killing that guy but before she starts tossing you ammo, she comes to terms with the fact that it was a "him or me" situation and that what Booker did was necessary. You also forget that Elizabeth desperately wants to not be put back in the tower and that she realizes that Booker is her best and only chance of that happening, so helping him whether or not she likes the killing that she's already come to terms with is in her best interests. Thus the only problem here is your memory failing you. Go on, have a replay, it'll help you realize your mistake.

MichaelPalin:
But, in my opinion, the core of the problem with TR, B:I and I guess tLoU, which I haven't played, has little to do with ludonarrative dissonace. In my opinion, the problem is that gamers are maturing and are starting to outgrow violence as the king of gameplay and plot in big amounts. Take Infinite, for example. While ludonarrative disonance may have appeared in the criticisms, the criticism that most people was actually making was basically: "I love the setting, I love the city you have built, why do you force me to shoot and shoot, when I would be much rather exploring it?". That's the core of the issue, people just require experiences that do not revolve around violence or that at least give violence less priority and the industry is unable to provide that. And Bioshock Infinite is for me the moment when this become clear.

If that is the complaint, if that is the problem people have with the game, then they should say that instead of shouting "ludonarrative dissonance!" when it does not apply. The gameplay and story differing from each other and an interesting world that players aren't allowed to explore because they're being railroaded from shooting gallery to shooting gallery are two massively different complaints. You aren't really contradicting anything said in the video. In fact, you're pretty much proving Jim's point: that people are tossing ludonarrative dissonance around because they aren't intelligent enough to properly articulate what their actual problem with the game is.

themilo504:
The violence never bothered me in bioshock infinite, what did bother me was how booker was a one man army gunning down thousands of cops soldiers and HUGE SPOILERS vox members, even with all of the vigor's he has that's ridiculous.

It also bugged me how long it took before soldiers started to appear, you would expect them to start showing up very quickly but instead they send out hundreds of ill-equipped cops to be gunned down in mass before bringing out the big guns.

Welcome to shooters, you must be new.

Eric the Orange:
I'd be interesting in seeing some of what Jim is talking about here. 'cause the only one I can think of is the EC episode, and there reasoning wasn't just "violence".

Link to the episode for those interested.

http://penny-arcade.com/patv/episode/in-service-to-the-brand

Doesn't surprise me at all that Extra Credits was wrong. Did they talk about how Gears of War is a first person shooter again too?

I have very little to say about this topic. Gender issues and game publishing practices, I can charge in with verbal battleaxe in hand...but I can confidently say I have never heard anyone talk about this issue. I listen to the Escapist Podcast and get several game magazines, both digital and in the mail. I've never heard of this argument.
Its oddly reminiscent with that late 90s renaming of things. Where shyness became social anxiety disorder and what not.
Ludo-narrative dissonance used to be called 'silly'. I think Conker called it 'Context Sensitive' and it was hysterical. Conker is a prime example, indeed because that's the point of the game. Conker does not want to play the game. He wants to go home and fully interacts with the player character and developer. And yet because he's the protagonist, he has no choice but to continue. Practice different then premise. And it was hysterical.
People really need to lighten up about these things.

Also did this week's episode seem shorter than normal? It just feels like it was over really quickly.

SWEEEET coat man!

Keep up the good work too. ;)

It'd be useful if Jim actually gave examples of the people who used the words so vile and repugnant as to make him yell at them over the internet. Because at this point I don't know if there actually are people (who are meant to be taken seriously) that say such things or if Jim is just misinterpreting justified criticism.

I thought the argument people were making about Infinite was primarily the scene where Elizabeth runs away because you kill a group of people. Where she is a afraid of you and thinks you're a monster, and then a few minutes later is completely fine with you killing anything that moves

 Pages PREV 1 2 3 4 5 6 NEXT

Reply to Thread

Your account does not have posting rights. If you feel this is in error, please contact an administrator. (ID# 49190)