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Resident...Evil...No More

Now I could spend this blog ranting about how awful the movies have degraded a wonderful part of video gaming history. But I won't do that. Except to say that the fact in the new movie Wesker is shown as being infected with the Las Plagas virus, which is enough for me to never see the abomination.
This focuses on Resident Evil 4 and 5. While they share the same name, and the same story line/universe. I have never believe they should be called Resident Evil. They changed everything about the games. It was no longer a Survivor-Horror game as I have come to know them. It was a action game, and slow paced at that. Now don't get me wrong the games, well at least 4, were incredible. Resident Evil 5 was just 4 with a different character and a co-op mode. 
I've just never understood the concept of taking everything that made the game Resident Evil and tossing it aside but still labeling it as such. It should have been a brand new game, not a continuation of a story that had been over for years.


Personal Plights of DLC

I have no issue with DLC content. I've spent a lot more on it then I ever actually thought I would. The issue I have with DLC is when I log onto my Live Account and it updates my GamerScore to reflect the DLC Achievements.
Maybe it is just a pet peeve but I don't understand why the achievements need to be reflected onto my score, thus lowering my game/achievement ratio when I haven't actually got the DLC to even do the achievements. A good example of this is Prince of Persia. The game is lack luster at best. Repetitive as all hell and you can complete a majority of the game and only kill a handful of enemies besides the ones required (I.E. bosses).
It may just be an issue that has come to light for me recently because of how nearly every game I play has some sort of DLC that comes coupled with it. Or is released a few weeks after the game itself.


Hybrid Games are the Future?

  So it would seem as we push further into this generation of gaming a new phenomenon has begun to pop up that was nigh unheard of back when I was a child. Hybrid games have began to take a big place lately in some gaming franchises. When I think of Hybrid Gaming Experiences the first two thoughts that come to mind are Mass Effect 1 and more so it's sequel. And the second being Fable 2 and again more so Fable 3.  Another great example, even though it is much more an RPG then FPS is Fallout 3.
Mass Effect was a shooter/RPG but it had so many of t he RPG elements that you would label it an RPG before anything else. But when they released the sequel they dropped some of the RPG elements and some people argue that it became more of a shooter. It's truly a RPS (Role Playing Shooter). But the team at Bioware found something that not too many games can manage, and that is proper balance between two different game types.
Then we move on to Fable 2. Fable was a RPG that had a lot of action gaming elements like real time battles. Fable 2 didn't so much drop RPG elements but it did change a lot of them, adding didn't variations that made it feel more like that RPG/Action Hybrid. Fable 3 promises to make that same leap by dropping more of the RPG elements in hopes of creating a true RGAG (Role Playing Action Game).
Now this equation seems to be so hard to work out as so many games falter and fail. Rise of the Argonauts is a good example, RPG elements in an Action Game setting and it's terrible. One that just came out is Alpha Protocol. It had all the makings of a good hybrid game but it tanked from the get go. While this is such a delicate balance when adding to different game types together I believe it's something that will be concreted as more time passes.


My achievement score is 45k, and I've never felt better.

For those of you that don't get the reference the title is directed towards a recently published piece in one of those gaming magazines so many people love to enjoy. I won't use a name per say but it's the one with the cover story of Arkham City but I'm getting away from the point of this issue. There was a piece published from an editor about the lack on importance of achievements and the ego that so many people get from there achievement score.
Before I go into depth about all the things I disagree with I want to make a point that I did agree with some of the statements made by the person. So on that let me start with all of the things that I did agree with. First off if you believe your achievement score (for the most part there are some exceptions to the rule and I'll get into that later on) you are sadly mistaken. Generally achievements do not reflect your skill as a gamer, weather they be online or off. They are for people that enjoy getting some kind of satisfaction out of the game and they want it to be shown to others and even shown to them that they actually achomplished something while they played.
I am an Achievement Hunter, point blank, period end of story. I wasn't always am Achievement Hunter but the day did come when a friend of mine started telling me my achievement score was  low and I needed to raise it; since before, when I used to play most of my old games for my PS1 or PS2, I was a completionist  I decided to get back into the hunt. Over the course of a month or so I raised my achievement score by 25k. Some of the games were throw away and I played them strictly for achievements but at the same time I busted my ass to actually get some of the hard achievements in some games.
The person made the comment that he doesn't consider getting points for a boss fight or something he had to do anyway an achievement but more like a pat on the head. Then he goes on to say if companies want him to get there achievements they should be integral to the story. That is a blatant conundrum for me because it is a contradiction to the previous statement.
Another statement he makes is that he essentially loves becoming engrossed in his video games and when you get the little blip that an achievement unlocked in breaks the illusion. That actually doesn't add up for me because any gamer that is truly engrossed in the gaming experience has had achievements pop that they didn't even notice. Never even saw the bubble pop up. I've had it happen on several occasions and I open up the screen and see that I've actually unlocked more then one. IF you want to be engrossed but the blips are too much for you, which is a cop out, then go play DnD or something else that you can use your own imagination rather then reaping the benefit of the imagination of others.
The final issue I want to touch base on that frankly pissed me off was this, and for this particular comment I will quote, "Anyone who plays games is a gamer - be that game Oblivion or Farmville." Now the first irritation that started towards my mental illness for this is that Farmville isn't a video's a mockery of a Video Game. Based on the Great, but flawed, Harvest Moon games. Comparing the games I play to Farmville or some other stupid Facebook game is comparing apples to oranges. You can't do that. Well you can but it makes you look like an ass. Maybe anyone that plays a game is a gamer but wait is someone who plays solitaire when they're bored at home a gamer? IF you play mine sweeper are you a gamer? The short answer is no. The long answer is comparing those types of games to a person who plays games that actually take skill and aren't based on how many other mindless drones you can get to play with you on your friends list makes you look shockingly for the umpteenth ass. 
In closing, as he states. "Make fun of my Gamerscore. I'm done with it." If you were done with it you wouldn't have deleted your gamerscore to make a point because you're tired of achievements. You wouldn't have written an an article about it and bitched for three paragraphs. It's like when someone says something to you and you say it doesn't bother you and then bring it up later because it's been festering like a rat and gnawing at your subconscious. You're an employee at a job that some people would kill you to have. At the very least your Gamertag should have been recovered and used just to be able to say, "Look at that I've played 500 games out of the 750ish that are out. Suck it bitches." Don't get mad because some 12 year old from Kentucky kicked your ass online then called you a scrub for having a low Gamerscore.
More to come perhaps, that rat from earlier is still gnawing at me.


Achievement Bound Now

 I've heard of people being obsessed with there achievements and only being concerned about getting that achievement score higher and higher but I had never been part of that group of individuals. I was more concerned about the quality of the game and the fun I could have with it, if I got some achievements along the way then so be it but I wasn't going to go out of my way to actually get the achievements. But about a month and a half ago someone started to bother me about my achievement score, and since his was upwards of almost 20k he decided to bust me on a daily basis about it. 

So after a good three or four days of this ranting and raving about how he was a "better" gamer then me I finally decided to prove a point quickly and effectively. I raised my gamer score by nearly 25k since that talk and his is still resting at the same. Was I just really good at getting achievements? Maybe to a point. I was determined for the most part, I wouldn't give up on an achievement I knew I could get, even if it took me an extra hour to do it. But the main bread and butter, about 10k of that 25k was from sports games. Old sports games that only had 5-10 achievements and they were so simple they could be done within a game or two, and at two bucks a pop it made them well worth the 1000 points they were banking me. 
Now though since I've proved my point to him that achievement scores really don't' mean crap about you as a gamer I've developed a new annoying issue. I CAN'T STOP. Now all I do when thinking of getting a game is comparing the game length to the achievements it will garner me within a play through or two. If the game has online achievements, like Halo 3, it's out. I don't feel like spending hours upon hours online to get a single achievement. I love video games, but there are very few I actually play online with others. So this stigma I have now has become such a hassle for me because I have started to speed through games that used to take me maybe 3 or 4 days or longer to beat, now I knocked them out within a day and a half. 
Is it really that big of an issue? Maybe not for some but for me it is because I love the story telling of video games, not the great graphics or how well constructed and tight the controls are, I love games for the stories they tell and the emotions they can bring out within you for the game, if you can't tell I love RPGs, especially JRPGs. I really enjoy the Silent Hill franchise but when I picked up Homecoming last week I had beaten it and got 1000/1000 within 8 hours of having the game, which means I went completely achievement oriented and tossed out my usual desire to learn the story of the game and develop rapport with the characters. I'm stuck in this state for who knows how long and it's nice to see my achievement score skyrocket further with each game I play now, as before I went for achievements I averaged maybe 300-350 per game, now I average 800-900 per game which is a massive jump.