Tuesday, November 27, 2012

It still cheats, too

Not playing on a keyboard means that I do not have a quick save button to reflexively hit every few minutes. Doom 3 BFG does try to alleviate this with a check point system but the check points are so far apart that they might as well not be there. Last night, just as I thought to myself 'it is time to go to bed so I should save, a surprise cacaodemon knocked me off a bridge. Where does something that looks like this hide?

Really big monster closets, that's where. Enemies spawning out of nowhere is usually despicable, but I am pretty sure Doom invented it, and in the context of the game it makes at least a little sense. They are demons, there was a portal to their home opened, now they are on Mars and can teleport around.

I didn't say it was logical, just that it was 'Doom' logical.

Enemies spawning out of the ether does get old when it becomes predictable. There is a noise and a flash and an imp appears, but never just one. As soon as you dispatch the one in front of you turn around and there will be another one there. Predictability destroys the mood Doom has so carefully created, so the game ups the ante with more and bigger enemies. Hell knights are never fun. Two hell knights is just not fair, but two hell knights with imps and a revenant hiding in the back is just mean.

Parts of the game feel very familiar, all the way down to where items are hidden and where enemies will spawn. It is almost frightening how much of the game my brain decided to stash in long term storage. Other times I have no idea where I am and what I need to do. This transition, when it happens, it more frightening than any demon based imagery. This probably speaks to my own personal neuroses and it certainly explains why I so rarely play a game through more than once. The first time through I cam cautious out of necessity. Knowing what is coming makes me lazy, but 'knowing' what is coming and being wrong is so, so frustrating.

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