So I was going to do this as a Gaming�s Guilty Pleasures C-blog, I�d actually been planning it for a week and a half or so. Then as I was typing this up I realized this wouldn�t fit the theme. This isn�t a �guilty� pleasure for me, it�s just a good old fashioned pleasure. So, instead of just scrapping it I figured I�d finish typing my thoughts and throw it up here. I mean, I already had some pictures ready, why waste �em, eh?
Pretty much any game in which I�m given the opportunity to be an asshole, I go for it. It�s always been that way. Be it as insignificant a choice as whether or not you�re going to leave that poor chicken alone, or a you�re-going-to-Hell-for-this-one move like murdering your blind sister, I usually go for the dick move.
I�m a nice enough guy in the real world, I�d never do half the things I do in video games if given the option in reality. That�s part of what makes games great. I�d never torture an animal, but that�s the first thing I do when I see a chicken in any given Zelda game. Run the little bastard into a corner and slash the bejeezus out of him. Playing the original Halo I�d gladly off the marines for their ammo. In Animal Crossing I roam around in a hockey mask and my custom made duds, sending threatening messages in little bottles to drift in the sea. In Hotel Dusk I got kicked out of the titular rat-trap by Dunning a few times in a row for talking shit to a little girl �til she started crying.
GTA 4 is out tomorrow, and I know I�ll be back in the swing of things, running over random passersby. Who here hasn�t hooked up in-game with a prostitute and immediately gotten a refund the easy, messy way? If you don�t run �em over as soon as they�re out of the car, you�re doing it wrong.
I remember the first time I used my powers for wrong. Way back in elementary school there was a computer game, either one of the Oregon Trails or another like it, I can�t recall the name. Anyways, you�d be able to trade with the natives for supplies in the game. I�d always lowball them, asking for a lot but offering very little in return. They�d usually decline, at which point I�d ask for a bit more and offer even less. They�d almost always accept, and I�d laugh my grade school ass off. I�d really find this hilarious. Who knows if it was poor programming or just developers with a sense of humor about taking advantage of indigenous people, but this crude computer game gave me the ability to be a dick, and I loved it.
Next came Zelda and the aforementioned cuccos. But Zelda was also my first experience with shoplifting in a game. Getting a five-finger discount from the shopkeeper in Link�s Awakening just felt great. Coming back later, to find the little guy pissed off was not so great�
RPGs are getting better and better at letting me be a jerk. From telling NPCs off in BioWare games, to killing everyone you meet in Oblivion and to a lesser extent Fable, it�s all good being bad. Even in other RPGs, where you really don�t have a choice in whether or not you go save that friend/lover/relative/ruler/homeland/etc, there�s usually somebody there to ask you to do so. I�m the guy that always has to say �No�. Sure, the dialogue often loops or you�re stuck wherever you�re at until you say yes, and I know that, but I have to decline if only to see what I can get for a reaction.
Fable may be more limited than some, but it�s still one of my favorites. You can do anything from give a kid the finger, to eat a �crunchy� chick, to commanding folks to follow you so you can sacrifice them at a demonic altar. It�s all degrees if dickishness. Helping folks, getting paid, then attacking them is a common practice. Fable punishes you though, making you bald and surrounded by flies. I can understand the bald thing, I mean we all know that good people have long hair
, so it�s only fitting I guess that my character would lose all his hair, but why the flies? Don�t jerks bathe?
Cosmetics aside, the only problem with being a dickhead is that it makes a lot of games easier. It�s often easier to power up when playing the jerk, and it�s definitely easier not to care if civilians die. I actually went against my normal gameplan when I played BioShock last year, I let the Little Sisters live. I wanted to limit my ADAM and make the game more challenging, but I know I�d have had more fun the other way. Needless to say, if BioShock 2 has similar choices, those little girls are going down.
So there it is, my not so guilty pleasure. I love doing the wrong thing, it�s just more fun. I�m sure most of you can relate�