Wednesday, October 6, 2010

RDE Syndrome

We interrupt this regularly scheduled blog post to bring you this important message about a serious medical condition, most often found in FPS games, especially of the military variety. This new condition is tentatively named "Ramirez Do Everything Syndrome".

Named after one of the main characters in MW2, this is one of my pet peeves of gaming. When you're supposed to be part of a huge battalion, or platoon, or whatever. Your character is usually just a low level grunt, yet for some reason the commander insists on tasking you with every single fucking thing no matter how important or dangerous. "Ramirez! Go up there and knife those guys with rocket launchers!" or "Ramirez, Parachute onto that nuke and disable it with this etch-a-sketch!"

I understand the need to keep the player directly involved so they don't miss out on any of the action, but there's got to be more subtle ways to do it. The most jarring example of this I recall is Gears of War 2. I loved the first Gears. The story to me was great because it felt like you were just a few grunts who happened to be in the wrong place at the right time. Then in Gears 2, you're like this unstoppable fucking super human force. You just get done chainsawing your way out of a giant worm when the commander calls up, "Yeah good job dudes but we got another mission for you. I need you to basically go and fight this whole god damned war yourselves, cool?"

It was just so stupid, even for a video game. Bad Company 2 had the same problem. The first BC was about a couple of guys just trying to steal some gold and get out of there. Then in BC 2 you're taking down 747's by yourself. I understand wanting to make things more epic, but at some point you lose part of what made the first games enjoyable.

1 comment:

  1. This tells you how much I pay attention to FPS stories, I don't even remember them. I just figure it was copy and paste and shoot that thing over there and movie on.