Tag: controversy

Destiny 2, and the Fall of Bungie

Destiny 2, and the Fall of Bungie

Introduction

I remember the first time I came across Bungie. It was many years ago when I found  Halo 2 at garage sale. That iconic cover art, with Master Chief holding his dual-wielding SMGs with burning city behind him and the Halo 2 title above him. It lured me into the franchise, and I fell in love with it after the first shootout. While it’s first-person shooter mechanics were amazing and revolutionary for the time, the main thing I quickly became a huge fan of was the story. This series is very famous for it’s compelling story, and rightfully so.

Right after finishing this masterpiece, I went to GameStop and bought a copy of Halo: Combat Evolved, and from then onward, I fell in love with the Halo Franchise. This series was made by developers who cared and who wanted to make a fantastic universe. Great writers, great composers, great programmers, and phenomenal artists. This company was on a highway to success, and I was proud to be a part of it. I’ve been a fan of Bungie for years, and I’ve seen them grow and develop with their titles. Then they left Microsoft, and everything changed.

When Destiny came out back in 2014, it was the first sign of trouble for Bungie. When the writer left the project early and several aspects of the story were missing. There was also the issue of there being no end game, and when they started wrapping things up with Destiny 1, there’s just no reason to continue playing. There were many problems with Destiny 1, and Destiny 2 was supposed to be the game that fixed everything. It was supposed to be the one game that made Destiny a better and brighter franchise, and it was supposed to the game that would bring everyone back.

It came out last year … and was somehow WORSE than Destiny 2. The story was worse, the writing was worse, mechanics from the first game were gone, Eververse became even more greedy than it was in D1, and much of the fantastic lore that was in D1 was practically retconned. It was a disaster, and as the DLC’s rolled out, it got worse, and worse. I’ve told you guys that I would be making my final post about Destiny 2 when the DLC II dropped, and that I would be giving my thoughts on it.

I was hoping to give you guys good news, but you and I both where this is unfortunately going. The DLC II was terrible, and Destiny 2 is no longer worth my time. I’m done with the Destiny Franchise. I’m done with Bungie, and this is my final goodbye to them.

Copy & Paste

That’s what this DLC was. It was a copy and paste of the shit that we’ve been seeing over and over again throughout the entire life cycle of Destiny 2. Same bullshit Hive that we’ve fought before, but this time, they’re covered in fucking snow. Wonderful. How original Bungie. Oh, wait hold on, there are new enemies there’s … Hive Knights that have a shield now … that you can break. Oh oh, and there’s Hive Acolytes with snipers … that are basically Hobgoblins from the Vex … oh, and … all the other “new enemies” are basically the same old Hive … just named differently.

Also, apparently this “species of Hive” is rare … and only exists on the Polar Ice Cap of Mars … for … some reason. This is never explained why. At least for not as far as I got before I gave up and deleted the game.

Another thing that’s copied & pasted is what I’d like to call “The Destiny Campaign Level Formula”, and it goes as follows. Step 1, player cut scene and briefly introduce characters and plot. Step 2, spawn player in visually breath taking environment. Step 3, when player spawns, play more dialogue that explains what the player needs to do. Step 4, after less than two minutes of walking down a boring path, introduce the players to the “new enemy” type by creating a combat scenario. Step 5, more dialogue after the combat scenario. Step 6, have the player face one/more than one big boss with many mobs the player has to defeat. Step 7, dialogue/cut scene before finishing mission. That was the entirety of the first mission, and it was fucking boring.

This has been every mission ever in every Destiny game … E V E R.

The “A C T I N G”

Sucks. It’s god awful. Whoever they hired to voice Anastasia Bray is the absolute worst at acting. She sounds like she’s fourteen using an iPhone 5 to record her lines. She doesn’t sound convincing in any words she says. The beginning part of this game actually made me quit. Nothing hooked me in. Which is the one thing you NEED to have with every story you write. You need to have a good HOOK, and Bungie, you fucked up bad on this one … again!

Zavala also is in this one … oof, his acting. His acting is similar to everyone else’s acting in the entire game … they’re all terrible. Nobody sounds convincing in any words they say or any actions they do. The only character I like (and everyone will agree) is Cayde-6. He at least sounds real in his words. The writing for his character is well done. However, everyone else sounds either cliché or forced in their dialogue.

Everything Wrong With Eververse

It’s greedy. It’s manipulative. There’s nothing more to be said. You wish to hear more about it, simply go look it up. The only real thing to discuss is the new system they added to make it more … “fair” for players who wish to play the game in order to earn rewards with paying money. I say “fair” in quotations because they can only earn one thing, once a week, and can only earn more … by spending more money. It’s fucking dumb.

Bungie Doesn’t Care Anymore

From what I’ve heard from many people still playing Destiny 2, this is just the same song and dance we’ve seen and heard before, but this time, with a different texture. At this point, I firmly believe that this company doesn’t care about Destiny, nor do they care about the fans who wanted to see this game grow and develop. It’s sad, but I’m afraid this is the reality. The Bungie I knew from my childhood would’ve NEVER allowed this kind of insanity to happen. They would’ve started from scratch again and again until they truly got it right.

I believe that many things happened after they left Microsoft. I believe several key developers left or were fired during the transition to Activision, and these new corporate folks came in and took over. When that happened, everything began on a quick and swift decline. The Destiny series went from bad to worse with Destiny 2, and instead of addressing the problem and being transparent with their consumers, Bungie continued doing sketchy stuff. Throttling XP gains, retconning the many great back stories of the Destiny Lore.

They don’t care anymore.

Goodbye

I’ve all but given up at this point. Destiny 2 has been on a slow decline ever since launch, and well deserved if you ask me. This is a complete repeat of what happened to Destiny 1, and we know what’s going to happen after DLC 2. There’s going to be a “massive DLC” that’ll “bring everybody back” and “fix everything”. I’m sorry, Bungie, but when Activision even considers you’re game a failure, I think it’s time to either start doing your job properly, or don’t do it at all. You’re running out of time, Bungie.

Gamers are moving on to bigger and better things. Warframe is a masterpiece compared to anything you’re doing, and Fortnite and PUBG have taken gaming by storm. There are better games out now. The only thing I’ll hold near and dear to my heart, is the Destiny Lore. The one thing that I loved about the series. Minus the lore of Destiny 2 … that … that lore was shit. So after giving them numerous chances, I’m finally done. This is my final goodbye to Destiny and to Bungie.

Of course, I will continue to observe this from afar and see what happens, but I will no longer interact Destiny with either of their games, because at this point, there is no longer any point to it.

Goodbye, Bungie. It was a good run, but you have truly fallen from grace.

 

 

RANT: Sea of Confusion…

RANT: Sea of Confusion…

So … I’ve rewritten this entire thing after long bit of thought, and honestly, I have so many mixed feelings about this game. I love it and I hate it in every possible and confusing way. I love the game’s ship mechanics, but I hate the game’s long and dull progression. I love the game’s graphics, but I hate the game’s server problems and game breaking glitches. I love playing this game with friends, but I hate it when we don’t rewarded for the voyages we complete. I don’t think I’ve ever been so conflicted with a video game in my life. This is crazy.

When I first played this game, I didn’t really enjoy it. I personally found it to be rather boring with little to no reason to grind for loot. I was so eager to hate this game and give all my anger … but a few of my friends gave me a second opinion and kind of woke me up to the reality of the situation. The real thing that makes this game truly shine through all of it’s problems. It is a fantastic game to play with your friends online. That is an opportunity you can’t miss out on.

So it has it’s faults and bugs, but its the journey you make with your friends that makes the experience enjoyable. Sure the tasks are all the same, but the outcomes and challenges you face will all be different in many ways. I’ll admit it, I was a little too quick to judge on this one. As I have been with many games in the past. I’ve allowed my passion for gaming to stand in the way of reason at times. I feel like I can sometimes be too critical on games that … well … don’t really deserve it.

Did Destiny 2 and Battlefront II deserve my hate? Yes, I believe so. However, for some reason, Sea of Thieves is a bit different. While it may seem bland and boring on it’s own, all you need is a group of your buddies to make it worth your while. With that said, I recommend you get this game. You and your pals. Trust me, you’ll have one hell of a time. I guarantee it.

Why do we No Longer Blame the Murderer?

Why do we No Longer Blame the Murderer?

“People fear what they do not understand and hate what they can not conquer.”       – Andrew Smith

For over 40 years, the Gaming Industry has been under attack. For the longest time, the government has blamed gaming for many acts of violence that have occurred throughout history. Mass shootings, organized riots, or even acts of terror. These politicians make up this false reality where all video games are “virtual boot camps” that are teaching our youth how to kill. That there is “evidence” and “statistics” that prove the games cause violent crimes. That these first-person shooters are the root cause of all evil in the world. When that couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, many researchers have found that 80% of mass shooters have no interest in video games at all.

So at this point, we can start to piece together that it isn’t the source of media that causes the act, but more of the person in question. It’s the person’s mental state, and how they mentally view the world through their eyes. For example, if they have it in their head that this video gamer or movie really makes them want to kill, that’s a decision they are marking on their own accord. Not because the film told them to. It’s much like how a gun can’t kill someone on it’s own. You put a gun on the table and leave it there, it isn’t going to do anything or hurt anyone. Not until you or someone else comes, picks it up, and tries to use it against someone.

So, why am I bringing up all this stuff about movies and video games? Well, it’s quite simple really. We don’t blame the murderers anymore. Yes, we arrest them. Yes, we prosecute them. Yes, we send them to jail, but at the end of the day when it all comes down to it, we don’t care about the murderer. We seem to only care about what tool was used and what possibly inspired the killings. The Las Vegas Massacre happened. What did we blame? Bump stocks. The Sandy Hook Shooting happened. What did we blame? Violent Video Games. The Parkland High School Shooting happened. What did we blame? AR-15s. The list goes on.

We get so caught up pushing our own agendas instead of attacking the real problem that lies within our own society. Guns don’t cause violence. Video games don’t cause violence. Movies don’t cause violence. Criminals cause violence. When a criminal has it in their head that they want to kill many people, they will do everything they can to achieve at committing their act. Nothing else matters to these kind of individuals. Nobody blamed the gun when John F. Kennedy was assassinated. Nobody blamed the planes when almost 3,000 people died on 9/11. Nobody blamed trucks when an ISIS member ran into a crowd of people in France. However, we seem to always blame guns whenever it’s a mass shooting.

Yes … the 2nd Amendment says an armed militia can be formed in the even of a tyrannical government. However … when the government is discussing a plan to possibly repeal the 2nd Amendment … many would consider that tyrannical. When the government is attempting to revoke our human rights to self defense. In the eyes of many, that can be considered tyrannical. Look back in history people.

Mao Zedong, Pol Pot, Adolf Hitler, Joseph Stalin, Hugo Chavez, Kim Jong In and Xi Jinping all have used Gun Control to the fullest extent. It’s easier to control the population when the people have no way of defending themselves. While you may say changing the age of gun purchases isn’t a big deal … all it takes is one. It starts with one regulation. We start with Bump Stocks. Then it’ll move on to age. Then we’ll increase the price of ammunition. After that, any “scary” weapons (aka Assault Weapons) will be banned from public use. Following that … it wouldn’t be long before the general public is entirely disarmed and no longer able to protect themselves.

That’s the reality we’re entering. When the government starts telling you that you don’t need guns, you NEED a gun.

 

 

The ESRB is Out of Touch with Reality

The ESRB is Out of Touch with Reality

Introduction

I don’t believe the ESRB realizes nor comprehends the reality of the situation they’ve recently gotten themselves into. As we speak, legislators from the United States are working with Representative Chris Lee to find a way to regulate loot boxes in video games, and the ESRB truly believes that loot boxes aren’t gambling. Also, there’s apparently “no evidence” to support the claims of loot boxes and gambling. Even though there’s mountains of evidence to prove otherwise. The many stories of kids spending thousands of dollars on in-game loot boxes, expressing the high/excitement they get from opening a box, and the insane prices weapon skins can cost.

This is the reality, ESRB. This is the truth behind loot boxes. It has affected children with addictive tendencies. It has even affected adults who have addictive personalities. This has been getting out of control since they were first discovered in the Fifa Franchise. It’s affecting the Gaming Industry in the absolute worst way possible. Loot Boxes aren’t “a fun way for people to purchase in-game items”. Loot Boxes aren’t “player choice” when they’re advertised in your face every time you get on. They are a problem, they are gambling, and they are getting worse with every game,. Something needs to change.

If the ESRB continues to ignore the problem, well, it won’t be long before Uncle Sam busts the doors down on the Gaming Industry. They’ve allowed the industry to go private for years, and now their pushing it too far. If the ESRB won’t find a solution, the Government will. Whether we want it or not. Let’s talk about this.

How are Loot Boxes a Form of Gambling?

I’ll give you an example, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. One of the more popular games know for it’s gambling practices. Weapon Skins are the main thing everyone on CSGO is buying right now. They can range anywhere from $0.01 – $60,000.00 depending on the rarity of the skin. No, that isn’t an exaggeration, that is an actual real price of a skin that was actually bought by somebody off of the Steam Community. I wish I was kidding, but this is fact. Moving on. Crates (depending on the rarity and value) can range between $1.00 – $5.00 and Keys (which you need to open the crates) range between $3.00 – $4.00. So after spending roughly $10.00 on a crate, you then have a random chance at getting a skin from the many different rarities.

The rarities include Common, Uncommon, Rare, Mythical, Legendary, Ancient, Exceedingly Rare, and Immortal. Of course, the rarer the item, the more valuable it becomes. So, yes, if I can spend real money on a Crate & Key and I get a highly rare skin from said crate, and then I can take the rare skin I got, cash it out for real money, then YES, that is considered gambling. You are paying real world money on a digital item that you then cash out for real world money. It’s no different than a slot machine.

You pay real world money to gamble on earning cash, which you then take a ticket to the counter to cash out the money you just won.

Why do we need Government Regulation?

I never wanted there to be government regulation. For the longest time, I had hoped and prayed that the Gaming Industry would learn from it’s mistakes and from all the backlash to stop these disgusting practices and find a better way. Clearly, I was a very naïve individual. At this point, I’m afraid we have no choice. When Chris Lee started this campaign against Loot Boxes, he came in with the intent to try and scare the industry into changing their ways without government intervention. Since AAA companies refuse to listen to legislators and consumers, they’re giving Chris no other option.

If we are going to see any change, the government is going to have intervene. When that day comes, I believe then (and only then) the Gaming Industry will finally realize the gravity of the situation, and change their ways for good. No matter how many times gaming companies try making excuses as to why Loot Boxes exist, the fact is games can be made without them. Monster Hunter World was released with no Loot Boxes and it’s a major success. Cup Head was released with no Loot Boxes, also a major success. It can be done, but companies are far too greedy.

Quantity over quality. They would much rather have a shit game that’ll make them more money in the long run, than a good game that’ll make them more money in the short run. That’s what this has all come down to.

In Conclusion

The Gaming Industry has only one option at this point; change your ways or the government will. We’ve given you one chance too many at this point. We’ve turned you into the $36 Billion Industry you are today, and you just want more. You couldn’t handle wanting more, and now its come to bite you in the ass. Do the right thing, ESRB. Call out Loot Boxes for what they are. PROPERLY regulate them to keep them out of the reach of children. Prove Chris Lee wrong and show him you actually care. Otherwise, well, he’ll just get them regulated himself.

Your move, ESRB.