Sunday, May 5, 2013

Now where is my tin foil hat?

Blood Dragon arrived at a strange place in its final minutes. Our hero has recovered a weapon on ultimate power that suspiciously resembles the glaive from Krull. Not only does it gib people for the price of just a little health but it gives him control over one the eponymous blood dragons, one with mounted guns and muted personality. Rex rides it through an end game turret level as the dragon narrates. At first it is just spouting Rocky quotes and internet memes:

Which is funny, see, because he has lasers. Except he says 'firing.'

Then it takes a surprisingly meta turn with 'This is fun and sad' followed by 'I am happy,' as if trying to convince himself that he is.

Next, 'Genocide is fun' in a sadder tone.

I am going to read too much into this because that is what I do. Here is an animal bearing at least some level of consciousness chained to a homicidal maniac, forced to watch as dozens of people are slaughtered. His master seems to be enjoying himself and he tries to as well. So he lumbers on, unstoppable, enjoying and lamenting his lot in life at the same time only to be discarded when the job is done.

Sad? A little. Conspiracy theory time: the blood dragon is a AAA title, bloated and powerful, driven on by the unreasonable demands of the master: the player. All the player sees is the spectacle, the carnage, and always demands more. The AAA title does its best to comply, urged on by both the player who pulls it forward and the publishers who whips it from behind. It knows that what it is doing is probably not right but it is all that it knows how to do. And when the task, the game, is done, when the genocide is completed, the game is discarded and the player moves on to the next thing.

Still feel good about your little romp on the back of an innocent killing machine?

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