Managing Expections: A tale of downfall and realization

From the very beginning of when Mass Effect 3 was released, a large majority of people were highly anticipating the conclusion of the beloved series. I'll admit that even I was excited, but I knew that to overreact or blow things out of proportion would only lead to disappointment. There's no way anything can live up to the mind's expectations. Is Shepard going to finally kill the reapers? Is Tali going to reveal that her race looks gorgeous? I wonder how every race, and each important character will be addressed in this grand finale. Well, those expectations are what lead to trouble - as I'm sure many people have witnessed.

You know ... this game isn't so bad.

Back when I was younger, I was highly anticipating the release of Halo 2. My mind was convinced that it would far surpass everything I loved about the original Halo. Of course, this was a huge mistake and not just because it didn't improve on everything I had hoped. It was a mistake, because my expectations were set too high, and there was no way I would appreciate the game for what it was - a video game. The story took weird turns, it ended on a cliffhanger, and the multiplayer didn't keep what I loved about the original Halo. Normally, these iterations on mechanics are fine, because change is a good thing. However, with expectations comes stubbornness and a close-minded nature, so I didn't like the game as much as the original and eventually hated it.

I've asked myself, over and over, what caused such a potent dislike for something as simple as a video game. Well, it became obvious that I was hoping for too much. I consider myself a huge Halo fan, but I now understand that whatever happens with what I love about the series is a factor of how much time was given for development, and the developer's/publisher's goals and ambitions (including artistic vision) for what the game is supposed to become.

This obviously isn't the real Commander Shepard. He doesn't have that janky charm that mine does.

If you've read this far into this blog entry, you'd know what I'm getting at - Mass Effect 3. Asking questions, or wondering what's going to happen isn't what causes problems upon game release. My expectations and ideas of what I wanted out of the sequel to Halo are what backfired on me. I now realize that Halo 2 is a pretty damn good game for what it was. Not only did it continue the lore and story of Master Chief in cool ways, but it was also a huge step forward for online gaming in the console space. The fact that the story did not carry forward in ways that I wanted was an issue for me and myself. What I thought about the artistic vision of Bungie was irrelevant and childish, because it was their story to tell, and not mine. Critiquing and speculating are fine, and mean that a game did its job in entertaining (and sometimes even provoking further thought) the player. I'm not going to say when games will be taken seriously as an artistic medium, because I already find them as appealing, if not more appealing, than books and movies. However, if claims are made that games are on the same level, we need to take that next step and treat them as such.

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Posted by huntad

From the very beginning of when Mass Effect 3 was released, a large majority of people were highly anticipating the conclusion of the beloved series. I'll admit that even I was excited, but I knew that to overreact or blow things out of proportion would only lead to disappointment. There's no way anything can live up to the mind's expectations. Is Shepard going to finally kill the reapers? Is Tali going to reveal that her race looks gorgeous? I wonder how every race, and each important character will be addressed in this grand finale. Well, those expectations are what lead to trouble - as I'm sure many people have witnessed.

You know ... this game isn't so bad.

Back when I was younger, I was highly anticipating the release of Halo 2. My mind was convinced that it would far surpass everything I loved about the original Halo. Of course, this was a huge mistake and not just because it didn't improve on everything I had hoped. It was a mistake, because my expectations were set too high, and there was no way I would appreciate the game for what it was - a video game. The story took weird turns, it ended on a cliffhanger, and the multiplayer didn't keep what I loved about the original Halo. Normally, these iterations on mechanics are fine, because change is a good thing. However, with expectations comes stubbornness and a close-minded nature, so I didn't like the game as much as the original and eventually hated it.

I've asked myself, over and over, what caused such a potent dislike for something as simple as a video game. Well, it became obvious that I was hoping for too much. I consider myself a huge Halo fan, but I now understand that whatever happens with what I love about the series is a factor of how much time was given for development, and the developer's/publisher's goals and ambitions (including artistic vision) for what the game is supposed to become.

This obviously isn't the real Commander Shepard. He doesn't have that janky charm that mine does.

If you've read this far into this blog entry, you'd know what I'm getting at - Mass Effect 3. Asking questions, or wondering what's going to happen isn't what causes problems upon game release. My expectations and ideas of what I wanted out of the sequel to Halo are what backfired on me. I now realize that Halo 2 is a pretty damn good game for what it was. Not only did it continue the lore and story of Master Chief in cool ways, but it was also a huge step forward for online gaming in the console space. The fact that the story did not carry forward in ways that I wanted was an issue for me and myself. What I thought about the artistic vision of Bungie was irrelevant and childish, because it was their story to tell, and not mine. Critiquing and speculating are fine, and mean that a game did its job in entertaining (and sometimes even provoking further thought) the player. I'm not going to say when games will be taken seriously as an artistic medium, because I already find them as appealing, if not more appealing, than books and movies. However, if claims are made that games are on the same level, we need to take that next step and treat them as such.