The subject of uber reality has been approached a couple different times. I talked about how realistic looking games tend to blow my mind more than those that look like another planet. Lindsey wrote here about how Sims makes her everyday life so much more fun. I would love to see how long I could keep a child alive or a business running without taking the risk. But what happens when the quest for realism reminds you of how much reality sucks ?
Again, I pull this week's blog from the enormous world of Red Dead Redemption. Giant RPGs like Red Dead are not going to be solid fun all the time. There are so many different kinds of missions and goals, it makes sense that there will be at least one that a given person might not like. That being said, what is the deal with those f**king cows ?!?! Notice the italic? That means I'm frustrated.
Why am I forced to herd cattle for hours in this game ? You have to do it in the very beginning and again towards the end. Plus that bitch Bonnie McFarland claims to be one the hardest working ranch owners, but she seems to need my help every five seconds. I constantly have to move her herd or catch some horses and break them. I understand that I need to repay her for saving my life, but I am running these lame, old west errands all the time. Chores suck in real life, they suck in the game.
It was neat to see the cattle move. There was probably some really amazing design elements or use of physics or engines or blah blah blah. Its all a waste if it isn't fun. And after about the first full hour of moving cows, I'm over it. Use your super tech and geek skills to make something interesting. And once I've done a boring real world task, lets move on.
I do appreciate that its simply a part of RPGs. I am suppose to be the character of John Martson and live his life. We need to know that John is a good guy and executing these tasks makes us understand that he is generally good those people that are deserving of his kindness. But aren't there other options ? Is there something else we could do ? Or maybe make some of the excess herding and breaking part of voluntary side missions instead of vital to the main quest ?
I know I'm dishing up a lot of hate for Red Dead right now. It's just in this area. I actually really liked the game; probably one of my favorites for the year. The characters were completely engrossing and the game play was smooth. There were no crazy load times and graphics were way impressive. I just feel like the game would have been a touch better without so much of the super real, mundane activities. And if I was allowed to shoot his annoying son, Jack. Ok, I've climbed down off my soapbox now.