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What really is screwing gaming...


Hy Bound
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Let me preface this by saying that my wife works at Blockbuster, which, for the uninitiated is actually pretty awesome for me since we get 5 free rentals a week, be it games or movies. The downside to this is the fact that we have one car; meaning there are days I have to spend insufferable amounts of time in Blockbuster attempting to amuse myself by seeing how many movies I can correctly guess were directed by the same person.

Anyway...

So during my time spent meandering down rows of games and movies i tend to overhear conversations of some of the many people browsing through games. Usually its made up of the different grunts of the 13-17 year old emo kids that live in my neighborhood, but a fair amount of the people i see looking for video games are parents. And while I'm sure those Emo kids make a good amount stupid choices, these parents are the sole reason games like "The Ninja Bread Man" (a game I hadn't heard of until i looked it up online and saw the reviews pan it for not even registering the Wii-mote most of the time) exist. Now, I admit that there are games out there that are considered to be bad by many people's standards that I enjoy quite a bit (Dynasty Warriors for example), but for god's sake, come on people. I don't need to think twice about whether or not a movie called "Meet the Deedles" (which was directed by Steve Boyum, who also directed You, Me and Dupree, incidentally) is gonna be a good movie. It isn't even a fringe group of people buying/renting this dreck either, its an overwhelming majority.

What made me want to post this rant in the first place was what happened yesterday while I was waiting for my wife to get off work. I was looking through some of the games to see whether or not they had DiRT (they have one copy, compare that to 4 copies of Spider-man 3) when I overheard a woman talking to someone on the phone about what game to rent for her kids. She hung up the phone without deciding anything and continued to stare at the games in a way comparable to a blind, semi-retarded Alzheimer's patient choosing which Quantum Physics book to buy. After about 5 minutes of this I chimed in to say that Smash Bros Brawl or Mario Galaxy were my favorites and that many of my friends loved them more than their own children. She mumbled something like "hehehehe, cheese" and grabbed a copy of both the Ninja Bread Man and Spider-man 3 and left.

Now I understand if I somehow confused her with the quip about loving games more than children or even scared her by snapping her out of her semi-conscious stupor, but damn! My wife then told me this afternoon that the lady came back today and told her The Ninja Bread Man wasn't registering with the Wii-mote and asked if she could rent something else... She rented Mario and Sonic at the Olympic Games, which from playing it at a Target once I found was pretty dern boring.

I know this comes off as rather elitist and pompous, as someone who spends much of his time reading up on several different web-sites about even the worst games available, but its really starting to bother me that the average consumer of video games, movies, music, midget butlers, etc. only seems to look at the box art and exclaim "pimp-slap boxing! wow, and it even has graphics in it! I got's 'ta git me some o' dat!" But since it sells, more and more games are made based off of that same business-principle. Its nothing new, but I haven't really been exposed to the level of mediocrity people are expecting (or not expecting) from window-dressed games until lately.

Discuss.

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Mario & Sonic is not too bad. Fencing and Trampoline are my favorite events I think. AI's freakin' cheap at Ping Pong though. :(

What sort of fencing does it have? Or is it just "fencing" with no distinction between weapons? (Sorry, I love fencing, and now I'm curious how that works in the game, and if it is just generic foil fencing or if it does epee and saber too).

If I wasn't saving for other stuff, I'd just grab it for my ds...

Um, but in regards to the OP, people are generally not too bright, as you're probably finding out with your lovely stays at the blockbuster. Can't really blame someone for grabbing non-well known games though, even if it's in ignorance...they might stumble across something pretty good after all.

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Haha, well I mean don't get your hopes up *too* high. Yeah, it's foil fencing, and it doesn't go past your basic lunge/parry-4/riposte (no counter-attacks...if you get parried you're boned). The concept of target area is way beyond the scope of this minigame. :P Don't expect 1-to-1 mappings of fencing gestures either. But even with these limitations, it manages to be fun when you take elements like basic advance-retreat dynamics and mindgames into account. I've only ever played against the computer, but I imagine it could get quite intense against a friend.

Edit: My bad, apparently it's epee. I also forgot you can do a generic "feint."

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tldr.

I think we go about this the wrong way. You wanna educate your kid in the proper paths of awesome, you pull out the SNES and let 'em cut their teeth on Super Mario World, Link to the Past, and Super Metroid. Then you bust out the Genesis and let 'em play Sonic so they understand why you won't rent Sonic Adventure 14 or whatever for them, because it's a rape of all that was once good with the world. Know your roots man.

All that's to say, if we all have to know things like the fact that Columbus discovered this rock in 1492, why don't we educate our kids in how awesome games used to was?

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Here's a breakdown of what she was thinking for each of the games:

Spider-Man 3 -- "Oh, he just loved that movie!"

Ninjabread Man -- "Isn't that cuuute?"

Mario/Sonic Olympics -- "OMG current events! Must be educational!"

Super Smash Bros. Brawl -- "Rated Teen! It must be very violent!"

Mario Galaxy -- "... it says U R MR GAY on the front ..."

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tldr.

I think we go about this the wrong way. You wanna educate your kid in the proper paths of awesome, you pull out the SNES and let 'em cut their teeth on Super Mario World, Link to the Past, and Super Metroid. Then you bust out the Genesis and let 'em play Sonic so they understand why you won't rent Sonic Adventure 14 or whatever for them, because it's a rape of all that was once good with the world. Know your roots man.

All that's to say, if we all have to know things like the fact that Columbus discovered this rock in 1492, why don't we educate our kids in how awesome games used to was?

That's why we have the virtual console!:<

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What confuses me is why these parents aren't...you know...taking their kid to Blockbuster and letting THEM pick the game. My mom was always happy to take me to the video store after school/work on Fridays with her so she could rent a movie for her and dad, and if I wanted one for me, a game.

As for whether people are making GOOD game choices, well I could argue Hy Bound that it's people like YOU who are ruining gaming by playing Super Smash Brothers Brawl instead of Guilty Gear XX Accent Core. It's not like you have some awesome card that means the mother should have went with your recommendation.

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I was at Wal-Mart (blasphemy, I know) just perusing the games, and I saw a family there who were looking for games for the Wii. The dad was looking at some generic fishing and racing games, and when the mom went to find an employee to open the case for them I was considering stepping in to recommend something else, but then the most wonderful thing happened: the Wal-Mart employee was knowledgeable about games. Upon seeing what games they were going to buy, he asked them what kind of games the family liked to play and started recommending games that didn't completely suck, like Mario and Sonic at the Olympics and Mario Galaxy. It was such a pleasant sight to see someone who was actually concerned about the customers; the guy was even asking the kids what games they liked and all that instead of just the parents. It's how I always imagined Gamestop was supposed to work, and to find that going on at some random Wal-Mart in northwestern Ohio was pretty awesome.

But yeah, the situation described in the original post is pretty common from what I've seen. It's not like you can educate everyone on the subject of good video games I guess~

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You see them every time in video game stores, which is where I tend to hang out some days. Parents or just ill informed newbie gamer who only buys stuff based on their biases about gaming and choosing only due to their genre and not how good it really is.

I mean, Adam Sandler movies and all those "movie" movies like the Date Movie, Superhero Movie and Meet the Spartans constantly gets close to 100 million dollars each, so there is a giant market out there for gullible, shallow-entertainment consumers. It's sad but true. It's like how all the truly great movies tends to be indy-films, documentaries or entirely foreign. At least movies don't have that much of a parity in quality as games do. Truly great videogames do get recognized by its vast hardcore gamer group. Then there's the idiots who buy Wii Fit instead of spending that money for a year's enrollment in a gym instead.

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you do realize that you are playing mediocre things because youre playing wii games right

I'm seriously starting to think you don't contribute anything other than throwing your opinion out on the Wii which is tangential to the topic at best.

And as for finding out which games to play when I was younger...I had my older sister to help guide me towards the light.

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