Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Gaming Oddities Episode IV: All Hope Lost

Tortimer says: "Heh heh horff, that's not a real movie!"

So then, my brain is fried and thereby unable to comprehend tonight's intended article. Thusly, we have Gaming Oddities Episode IV: All Hope Lost (Good thing George Lucas won't ever see this).

Item shop, weapon shop, armor shop... Is there a grocery store in this town?

Play any RPG, and you're sure to encounter the following: Every town has plenty of stores for your warriors to peruse, but nowhere for the townspeople to buy food, clothing, or anything else. Since there doesn't seem to be all that much farm land in Castle Corneria, I suppose everyone just sucks in nutrients from the air. Or maybe everyone but us has access to a secret grocery store hidden deep beneath the Earth's crust? They must save a bundle on their electricity bills down there, what with natural heating and all.

"Drink this potion! It'll magically reattach your retinas!"

It seems that no matter how injured a character gets, one simple potion will save them. Knife to the face? Have a potion. Sword in the gut? Take one and call me in the morning. Skull bashed in? There's a Visine for that. If only this were true of real life. Legs crushed by a tractor trailer? You know the drill.

All cash works at any store anywhere at any time

So, you just flew in from Midgar, and boy are your arms tired! You need a place to rest for the night. But wait! This is a bizarre and unknown land half-way around the globe! Surely they won't accept your foreign currency here... Right? Well, it would appear that everyone on Gaia has agreed to use Gil as their primary form of cash. If only it were so easy on Earth... I could go down to the States and spend freely without worrying about exchange rates or paying duty... Finally, a way to legally escape our exorbitant taxes!

I suppose "English as a Second Language" doesn't appear on Hyrule report cards

No matter where you go or who you talk to, almost every single person you meet will speak perfectly fluent and understandable English. It doesn't matter if you travel five or five thousand miles, chances are, the people there will speak English. Heck, in some games, aliens and non-human species even have a grasp of our native tongue! Leave it to gaming to completely dissolve the language barrier. Just imagine if this were true of our world... We'd actually hear Miyamoto talking, and not his pesky little translator!

"Your car can survive falling 30,000 feet? How much you want for it?"

Half-Life 2, Need for Speed, Driver, Halo... Almost any game that involves driving cars usually ends up involving said car falling a billion feet and driving away unscathed. Last I checked, cars don't fare all that well when plummeting from dizzying heights. I have honestly never encountered a game with cars where this hasn't been true. From Halo's mighty Warthog to Half-Life 2's slapped-together buggy, it seems no force of gravity can bring your car to a halt. I really need to figure out who makes these cars and buy some stocks.

Stuck on an alien planet? Need ammunition? No problem.

it seems that no matter where you go in an FPS, there will always be somewhere to replenish your ammunition stocks. Covenant dropship in Halo? I gotcha covered. Deep, dark caverns in Half-Life? No problem. Far-flung planet in the distant Alimbic solar system? The ammo's right over there, Ms. Aran. Either our heroes (And heroines) have access to insanely adaptable weapons, or someone likes to drop ammunition wherever they please, be it cavern, alien vessel or far-off planet. Damned litterbugs.

So ends yet another edition of Gaming Oddities. Feel free to discuss this in the comment section, or this forum thread. Or both, if you're feeling adventurous. I'll see you all again on Friday.

The Duck Has Spoken.

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