Well shit. This is truly a profound loss. My condolences to all of the people at Giant Bomb and all of Ryan's family.
MAguilera's forum posts
@starvinggamer: True, that is a common trope. Give the audience just enough information to keep them speculating. It certainly seems like that is happening, but if I spend my time speculating then given the infinite realty situation there is no resolution. For all we know a walrus could be in that crib depending on what reality we are in t the time. What is the point of that speculation if there is infinite possibility? At that point it comes down to faith. I choose that Anna is in that crib because that is what I want to believe, but there is no logical justification for that standpoint given infinite options.
As I think about this more I wonder if an opportunity was missed to have a slight message on the significance of your reality. While much of the end of the game establishes that you don't really have a choice in many of these matter, the ending baptism would suggest that you do (even if that is antithetical to the previous message). Maybe there should be a Voxophone about how despite the infinite realities your decisions shape your reality and the choice you made to kill yourself/Comstock led to a reality where you still have your daughter? While there are still infinite other options this is the one you get to live in. One vox about it wouldn't tip the scales completely against the ending narrative but would also validate the post-credit ending as having some significance.
@rebgav: The density of the final scenes was an issue (at least for me). I felt like the number of twists left me looking at the story I wasn't interested in (or hadn't had time to become interested in).
@bourbon_warrior: I'm going back through on 1999 mode and am looking at those seemingly irrelevant moments again. It certainly is insightful. Perhaps this time through with my focus more on the DeWitt/Comstock relationship I will be invested in the story that the ending resolves.
I still think my disappointment stands. Not in the quality of the ending (again, I think it was a strong ending), but in the feeling that I read one book, only to find the ending of another book in the last few pages. Now I'm being told that I need to read the book again, and realize that the actual story (the one that fits the ending) was written in the footnotes of the book I was told to read. Even if I do read this second book (which I am and enjoying), what about the ending of the first one?
@starvinggamer: I'll agree that the post-credit scene dealt with the resolution but it also kind of felt incomplete. If the goal of that scene was to give you some resolution, then show Anna in the crib.
@tarsier: Nope. I was genuinely concerned for Elizabeth and wanted her out of the trap she had been in the whole game. I think part of it tapped into learning she was your child and being a father of a daughter myself.
@bourbon_warrior: I agree that if the ending was just Elizabeth and DeWitt end up in Paris wouldn't have felt right either. It would have been a video game ending and the game wouldn't be as special. The point that I am trying to make isn't so much about how the ending should change (I think it should stay the way it is) but more about how I felt the story drove hard in one direction then turned all of a sudden into a radically different story at the end and I was left hanging with an incomplete ending to the story I had become invested in. To be more clear, my disappointment isn't more with the ending that is there, but more based in the ending that wasn't there and how surprised I am that I cared about that ending (a resolution to Elizabeth's arc) so much.
What made Ebert a good critic (for me at least) was that I felt like I knew where he was coming from. Even if I didn't agree with it, growing up watching the two of them going back and forth created a sense of understanding who they were (in much the same way quicklooks and podcasts do now) that informed my opinion when I read their reviews. Context is arguably one of the most important things in reading reviews and that is what Ebert brought to the party.
I am probably off of the mark, but I always assumed it was his passion for movies that made him so hesitant to give video games a similar footing in the world of art. While I didn't agree, I could see where he was coming from (as an obsessive movie fan). Again, context. Good article, Alex.
Yeah, I think I will have to close my eyes and do it again. @Sooty had a suggestion about bears, which would be great if I wasn't playing it on a 360. My loss I guess. As for @ViciousAnchovy I don't know what is in the vial. This particular vial is part of a quest, so I'm pretty sure that I have to get that one.
I remember this happening in Fallout, but I made it through the whole game there with having to seriously backtrack. I was aware that this might happen, it was just unfortunate that it involves spiders and that I completely finished the dungeon before I realized the problem. C'est la vie.
So once more into the deep I go and hopefully I remember all of the spider locations. I avoided some trap that would have put me in the middle of a group of spiders last time. That would really suck if I can't avoid it this time. Also last time I got the giant spider stuck on some geometry and just iron arrowed him to death. Hopefully he wont make it up the stairs this time.
Thanks for the help.
I was running through Valthume a few nights ago getting some vials. Everything seemed to be going well except for the spiders. As an arachnophobe I don't like it when the spiders show up. I know this is silly, but I usually have to pause the game and resort to everything I have to be destroy them from a distance. (Seriously, I used to use the rocket launcher to kill spiders back in Resident Evil because I wanted them to die immediately) Some of the Draughs were tough, but I think I have killed all of them. Alas, there seems to be one problem: one of the vials has ended up on top of a vertical tomb and I can't reach it. I've tried shooting it to get it to move, but that doesn't work. I've tried shouting at it, but that hasn't worked either. I'm out of options that I can think of. I know there is a telekinesis spell out there, but it is an adept level spell and I am a melee user. So it seems like it would take me a long time to get the spell, and it still might not work.
Which means I am entertaining the idea of redoing the entire dungeon (spiders and all!) in order to get the one vial. It kind of feels silly, and I'm not usually one who has to do everything in the game. I am avoiding the thieve's guild stuff because my character doesn't really sneak well. He just wants to run in and bash things. But for some reason I am having a hard time walking away from the quest, knowing that the vial is right there.
Thoughts? Should I redo the dungeon? Move on? Is there an option to get the vial I haven't thought of yet? We'll see what the internet has to say. Until then I'm going to have to do something else with my spart time other that Skyrim.
@Ctmskater75: Good call on waiting for Skyrim. After Fallout 3 I regretted not waiting for a complete version with the DLC bundled in for cheap. I spent a lot more money on that game than I should have, but it was really good.
Looking back at the year I played more than I thought I would. Much of it was between the hours of 10pm and midnight. There were some good games in there and there were some bad games. So here is my list of the games I played in 2011. Not all of them are represented on the site, but most of them were so we will limit it to those available. This is in no way meant to reflect the accomplishments of each of these games. I DO NOT think that Mario & Luigi is a better game than L.A. Noire. I just had more fun playing one than I did the other.
Portal 2: I got this game twice. Once on steam and then again on the Xbox for my birthday. Unlike other games, I wasn't late to this party. After having so much fun with the original game I was confident that I wanted to play this immediately. After running through the story (which was both better than Portal's and worse?) I coerced a friend to come over and play through all of the coop stages. I know there is DLC out there that I need to get to, and I am looking forward to picking it back up. Let me explain my "better and worse" comment. I think the story of Cave Johnson and the story of Wheatley are stellar. The thing that I didn't like as much as Portal was how direct the game was in telling you the story. That really isn't a very good complaint, but that is how it felt.
Skyrim: I really, really loved Fallout 3. I bought all of the DLC and got my S rank in that game. Skyrim has been more of the same. I feel like the world is organic, even though I know it isn't. I have by no means finished this game, but I cas easily see myself playing for the better part of the next year. This game is amazing. Last night I jumped a little when I saw a dragon's shadow race across the ground in front of me. The dragon didn't engage, and there was this moment of "do I take a shot or not" that makes that game so wonderful. I'm confident I will play again with a different style of character.
Bioshock 2: I got to this game really late, and with an amount of skepticism due to other people's comments about the game. But I absolutely loved Bioshock, so I had to give it a shot. I was disappointed. While the parts that people bashed about the game weren't that great, Bioshock 2 was a fun and atmosphere-rich shooter. I didn't get all of the DLC (only Minerva's Den), but I played through the game twice to get all of the achievements. Like Portal, the sequel didn't match to the first, but it was still better than the average #2.
Borderlands: One great thing about being late to games is getting GOTY editions with all of the DLC included. This game was a lot of fun. It was easy to not pay attention to the story and just go through killing things. I spent a lot of time with this, but never really got to the DLC. I'm sure I will in the future, but for now I have gotten my fix.
Halo: Reach: I was very pleasantly surprised by this game. being underpowered (compared to Master Chief) felt good. The story kept me going pretty well. I even played it twice (again on legendary? or maybe it was heroic). This was a game where I kept the volume up so I could hear the dialogue. Arguably the best Halo game I've played (keep in mind I don't play multiplayer).
Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood: This was the reason I played AC2. I'm not sure if this was significantly better than AC2. Many of the systems felt better, and the story felt better (at least the non-Desmond story). The downside was that I had played AC2 so recently I think I got burned out on the whole Assassin's Creed concept. I did a lot of the side missions, and all of the Borgia towers, but I didn't get as into the town or the shops as I thought I would.
Civilization IV: On ridiculous sale from steam at the end of last year, I kept playing it as 2011 rolled in. It is a Civ game, which is praise enough for this game. I got deep enough where I was figuring out how to determine optimum paths for a cultural victory. This game was great . . . so great that I have yet to buy Civ V.
Pac Man CE: DX: this game was great. It was a suck a wonderful thing to play for just a few minutes before I started to go to bed. It was easy to get the achievements, but hard to do well in. I never watched any youTube videos, but I have no idea how some of those high scores are even possible. As a kid who grew up in the arcade, this was an awesome experience.
Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story: This is the type of game that I would start and never finish. But somehow I was able to make it all the way through this interesting romp of a M&L game. The story was interesting, although lapses in play meant I had to look at FAQs sometimes. All in all a great experience, but I don't know if I would go do it again.
Etrian Odyssey III: I started playing this game as a group that was determined to finish the game and chat about it in order to figure it out. That went well until I realized that most other people had finished the game and I was stuck on the 18th floor. I really did enjoy the game, however. The grinding wasn't terrible, and I was able to stay engaged with the story. Being on the DS I was able to play it literally before I fell asleep and also when I traveled. In the end it was the loss of compatriots that made me stop playing the game.
Assassin's Creed 2: I got Brotherhood for Christmas last year, and I figured that I would want to play #2 before I got to it. I'll say that I enjoyed this game for the game play, which was greatly improved from AC1. But I didn't really pay attention to the story. This is probably the result of playing late at night with the volume down, but it meant I never really knew what was going on. That was fine, because the collectable components of the game kept me going and I finished the whole thing.
Civ: Colonization: At the end of last year I got Civ IV and three expansions for something like $10 on steam. I played a lot of Civ IV, but also messed around with Colonization. It is a very different game than Civ, with a complete economy section that made the game very interesting. I never really won, but I don't really know what that would even mean.
L.A. Noire: I got this game for my birthday and was super excited about it. I was behind the curve a little, so I knew most of what the game was about (adventure game with face reading). I started the game with all good intentions, but had a hard time keeping it going due to the pace. Most likely it was due to the way in which I am able to play games, but I had a hard time keeping my interest up for the game. I'm sure I will go back and finish it since one of my friends works for Rockstar, but I don't know when.
MTG: Duels of the Planeswalkers 2012: Yeah, I jumped back into this habit for a little while. It was fun, but the online and deck management still aren't where I would like them to be.
Crysis 2: This game was sensory overload. I was all prepared to sit down and play it for a long time, but as soon as I got to the first real combat section I was overwhelmed. I'm going to go back to it, because I know the combat system is worth it, but for now it is on the back burner.
DQ9: I'm still in the middle of this game, but it has been fine so far. I have always wanted to finish a Dragon's Quest game, which led me to DQ8 on the PS2. never got far in that one, but have done better in this one. I doubt I'll be able to stick it through to the end, but I have enjoyed the silly story telling in the game. I haven't enjoyed the leveling system. Spending points to get towards a skill that I don't understand only to get no real gain this level feels odd.
Professor Layton and the Diabolical Box: A christmas present that I started playing in the last week. It is just like every other Layton game so far. If there are subtle differences . . . I don't know what they are.
Alan Wake: I started this game and then almost immediately stopped it. I couldn't get past the combat mechanics at a time when my game time is so valuable. Oh well.