I've watched these all the way through but never played them

Tired of being left behind in games conversations, I've just watched the games I've begun watching others play games I've wanted to see. It's not usually the ideal method, obviously, but some of the elements in most games can be enjoyed no matter how you experience them.

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14 Comments
Posted by Ramyun

I keep looking but I can't find Persona 4 here anywhere!!

Posted by ahoodedfigure
@Ramyun: We're almost there!  Not quite finished yet! :)
Posted by Ramyun
@ahoodedfigure: I don't think they sell Persona 4 here in Australia so I don't I think I could play this game. *sadface*
However, I have reached a point where watching the ER will give me the whole Persona 4 experience, and then some!
Posted by Murdouken

I've never watched a game all the way through. Seems like it'd be incredibly boring. :p The whole point of games in my opinion is the interactivity. So where is the appeal in just watching someone else play?

Edited by ahoodedfigure
@Murdouken: It's a fair question.  Unlike a lot of people who use this site, I'm not really able to buy a console and a ton of games, so I get to miss out on the stories and scenery that other people take for granted.  I think that's part of why there's console loyalty and rivalry, since a lot of people CAN'T afford to get two or three or however many consoles AND keep up a quality PC or whatever.  They're defensive about the fact that they're stuck with the one they have for the time being.
 
I don't have that problem since I'm pretty much out of the loop entirely, but I still want to, in some way, participate in the discussions, understand the references, and follow, at least vicariously, where the video game narratives are taking us.
 
I agree that interactivity is the focus of gaming, but even games don't often hold up to that high ideal.  You get a lot of cutscenes, a lot of non-interactive elements that are still compelling that come from older, less overtly interactive traditions (usually movies), you get trained and railroaded to do exactly what the designers want you to do, and the choices you have sometimes feel like they're there as just altnerative railroaded paths rather than a real combinatorial approach to variables. 
 
The kinds of games that are unable to be enjoyed by watching over someone's shoulder, I'd say, are some of the coolest kinds of games (I've watched people play the insane Noby Noby Boy but wouldn't ever put it here, even if there was an end to it).  Obviously such games don't work too well for this.  
 
I could watch Shadow of the Colossus and get the point of the amazing landscapes and the immense enemies, though, without playing it.  It likely won't be as good, because I may want to spend more time just looking at an area, feeling in danger with only my skill being the measure of whether or not I survive (that's a big one), or figuring out just what the lizards are for, but I consider it a reasonable compromise because I am otherwise unable to have any experience AT ALL.
 
I hunger to have a console and games, but since it's not a good option for me, I do what I can to keep up with the hobby I love.
Edited by TMThomsen
@Murdouken: For me, it heavily depends on the game. If a game's strength is its story and graphical quality, I would get nearly the same experience watching someone else play as if I did it myself. 
 
For instance, I've just recently watched play-throughs of Uncharted 2 and Silent Hill: Shattered Memories, and even though I didn't take part in the combat, I still managed to get thrilled by the experience and understand what's good about those games (which is why I include them on my own list).
Posted by ChernobylCow

Could you share your links to the Far Cry 2 blog?  BTW, what systems do you have? This is a pretty broad spectrum of games and it is hard to determine what you would be able to play.

Posted by ahoodedfigure
@ChernobylCow: I think I said in my first blog entry what systems I have.  Add the Gameboy Micro to that list and I think it's complete.  
 
This link is where I learned about the Far Cry 2 permadeath run.
Posted by EliminatoR

Great list,I watch video walkthroughs a lot as well.I also saw Shadow of the colossus first before actually buying it,and I was amazed both times.
Posted by ahoodedfigure
@EliminatoR:  It's heartening to hear that SotC can still amaze after it's been watched, but I get why that might be, given the exploration sequences and immense bosses sort of demand the player taking a look for him or herself.  That game seems to manage the visceral feel of immersion better than a lot of other games; probably why it's so popular.
 
By the way, can you tackle a Colossus out of order? The person I was watching did everything from first to last.
Posted by EliminatoR
@ahoodedfigure:
There is an order the first time you play it,but after you can do the challange mode and take on which colossus you want,plus you can get some extra items.
And yes the feel of immersion is like in no other game I played,also the sense of EPIC is like in no other game.I consider Shadow of the colossus more like an experience then an actual game.
Posted by MormonWarrior

I got super frustrated and just watched all the cutscenes from Final Fantasy XII.
 
That said, you're doing yourself a huge disservice by not playing Metroid and Mass Effect. Those games are far better experienced than simply watched because of the decisions you make.

Posted by ahoodedfigure
@MormonWarrior: Yep.  And if I can afford to play all the games I want, I totally will some day.
Posted by X19