Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Humor in movies and games

I would define humor levels in movies/games at 4 phases:

Max HUMOR Space Quest style: this would be where the main humor is parodies from other sources and jokes about the "game."
EXAMPLES!: You see Darth Vader and such running around, and you see all sorts of star trek borrowed references.
EXAMPLES2!: The game recognizes itself as a game, like: "You pick up the key because that's what you do in adventure games."
EXAMPLES3!: One of the characters in the game asks you if the game was worth 50$ to buy.
This humor does not take itself seriously and it just laid back crazy style, where anything can happen...

Funny HUMOR Monkey Island style: The jokes are hidden within dialogue and subtler references.
Examples: Various dialogues between characters...
This kind of humor however doesn't let everything get "too" crazy. The designers won't make too many jokes in space quest style where they talk about the "game." They try to keep a semi-"seriousness" while having crazy talks between the characters.

Light HUMOR: Lighter Indiana Jones style: The jokes are vaguer and just between characters. Nothing really outrageously crazy, just simple witty remarks. Also used in Cowboy Bebop.

No HUMOR: Dark style: No jokes here, just teeth gritting, darkness, and seriousness. THINK: Blade Runner.... again.

In my opinion, I prefer Funny-Light Humor. Max humor is not my taste. I just think you lose the atmospheric feeling when everything goes crazy and you start meeting luke skywalker and then you go appear in king's quest. Sure it's funny if the story goes like that, but if the game actually has a "story" than it's stupid to go in wierd directions.

Side note: Another thing I hate about stories in humor games is the way stories play out--but first, let me talk about monkey island. Monkey Island is a funny game. The story is pretty good and can be taken seriously (such as in Pirates of the Carribean style). Even with a serious"er" story, you can still keep the game funny.

But what I do HATE about stories in humor games is when they make the main problem in the story stupid just because the designer thought it was a funny pun.

I don't want to play a game where Roger Wilco loses his golden cleaning mop and must find it otherwise the aliens will build a death star with it. I would rather play a game about an intergalactic war between two alien races where rebels and dangerous virus' float through the galaxy and pirates try to kill all the settlers. You can still put humor in both games, but the second one would be way less quirky.

Note: this is my opinion, not a fact, thank you.


Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Counter-Strike Source

CS:S - A review

Why Counter-Strike Source is a good game:
1) Faster paced games. If you die early in CS:S the game will restart in less than 3 min, usually about 1 min. This makes for much more playing time than AA where when you die sometimes you have to wait as long as 9 minutes. Also this will allow you to learn the map easier and develop new strategies without having to wait if they fail.
2) Integrated Voice Comms. Counter-Strike Source has integrated microphone communication support which makes for faster communication, better teamwork, and some other stuff. But if you don't like it, you can always turn it off.
3) Crazy maps - These include all sorts of weird custom maps. You can play all sorts of weird maps in CS:S which makes for lots of new adventures in the FPS world. These maps can include a 20 story staircase where one team starts at the top and bottom, a map where both teams are the size of rats in a kitchen, or a duel-it-out in the wild west. All these crazy maps are just different and totally fun (well, some of them anyway).
4) Different gameplay modes are interesing (at first). In CS:S, planting a bomb at a bombsite, or playing as a CT running to defuse it, it just gives an adrenaline rush that is awesome the first few times you do it.
5) All the different guns and options in the buy menu create tons of different strategies and fun. Sometimes the shotgun will do the job, sometimes the m4; all the different options are just fun.

Why CS:S is a bad game:
1) The hitboxes in CS:S are totally wacked - I've fired and shot behind people's feet and gotten headshots... totally weirded out.

2) The gun physics in CS:S are totally messed up. In CS:S your gun is ridiculously accurate in single shot at longe ranges (100 feet), but ridiculously inaccurate after the first two shots. For example:

Imagine this: You're in a firefight with an enemey ten feet in front of you. Hold down the trigger and aim steady for 5 seconds = instant kill right? Wrong. If you hold down your trigger for about 2 seconds, and continue to hold down, you'll continously miss the enemy in front of you (who is only 10 feet away which is absolutely ridiculous), then he fires one shot at you and kills you after you've been spraying your gun at him for ten seconds. In almost any other game you would've killed him there.

3) 80% of the map design in CS:S just plain... sucks. (Note: I play most of the maps 20 vs 20). In most maps there is only between 2 and 4 main ways to go, and at each end there are a bunch of campers waiting to get cheap kills. Hardly any strategy here... no flanking, no thinking, no nothing. Just about the only strategies on most maps are "EVERYBODY RUSH THIS WAY!" and then the next round "EVERYBODY RUSH THAT WAY INSTEAD!"

There's also hardly any hiding spaces on most maps. Most of the rooms are empty and barren with maybe a box or two. These maps just promote rushing and gunning with nowhere to hide (something that I consider bad). They should have way more objects like desks, chairs, boxes, and stuff that will cover you in a firefight, and THAT WONT EXPLODE IN YOUR FACE WHEN U SHOOT THEM.

And that covers about 90% of the strategies on the majority of CS:S maps. I know there are some maps in CS:S that are very well designed... but the majority of the maps are ... bad.

4) The general realism as a whole is just... mediocre at best. Everything is kind of unrealistic; the pyschics, the guns, the movement, the characters. Compared to some other games *cough*cough* its unrealistic.

CS:S : A fast pased, crazy fun, unrealstic, terrible game, that is fun and addictive.


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