Tag: Detroit become Human

Quick Time Events suck

Quick Time Events suck

I know it’s a cliché to argue exactly what I’m saying in the title here, but don’t worry. I’m not actually planning on going on a long tirade against QTEs in video games.

This is just another case of ‘I spent all day hanging out with my friends and didn’t take the chance to write anything so I need some space filler.’

Welcome to space filler.

The reason I bring up quick time events in the first place is because most of our time today was spent playing a little known title called Detroit: Become Human. That’s right, the narrative-driven title brought to the world by Quantic Dream and the ever-controversial developer David Cage.

It’s a game that’s interesting… But pretty heavily flawed. In some key places.

We’ve been playing the game over the last few hangouts we’ve had while Jonathan was off in Canada on an extended road trip vacation, and it’s given me the chance to absorb some of what I feel are the big problems with my experience of the game — outside of issues with the studio and some of the ways women are treated that have been played to death in media.

No, my main problems with the experience of playing Detroit: Become Human involve certain gameplay elements. Beyond just the way it awakened a previously unknown pet peeve of being back-seat gamed when messing up a quick time event because I’m not used to Playstation controls and stuff is too sensitive and gettING YELLED AT ABOUT SCREWING THE GAME OVER UP DESPITE THE FACT THAT LATER IT’S REVEALED EVERYTHING WORKED OUT OKAY BECAUSE I’M A GOOD ROBOT JESUS JUAN AND TIANA CHILL OUT.

*Ahem*

Sorry about that. Just lost the last few seconds of my life, but I think I’m okay now.

But yes, besides issues with quick time events, it also annoyed me how much the game relies on using invisible walls and choices that inevitably seem to make no difference in the narrative necessarily.

For example, in one scene a character can lose their memory if the player doesn’t respond to a series of events fast enough. In the branching paths of the story’s narrative there is apparently a pathway that can be ventured down where the character legitimately loses their memories forever and becomes a mindless android servant.

But that isn’t a result of actually losing their memory the first time.

No, if the character loses their memory, that isn’t the end of the scene. Screwing up didn’t just kill the run, it instead let the character walk out and find ways to regain their memories.

I suppose the argument could be made that having these kinds of levels of choices to be made is an example of having a successfully branching narrative.

But there’s a narrative dissonance when the character you’ve been playing loses all sense of themselves… But that doesn’t inherently affect the player’s abilities to control their actions. All it really does is add a few extra steps for the player to advance into the next scene rather than going straight there because nothing about the experience of playing changes.

I don’t know, maybe I’m just not a fan of the style of games presented by Quantic Dream, but elements like that bugged me. It felt somewhat manipulative, attempting to throw the player in a certain story direction under the guise of giving them multiple different choices.

I won’t go on too much about the issue, since it isn’t necessarily something I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about. It just seems like an interesting topic to broach and potentially get the internet’s opinion on by throwing it out into the aether here.

Besides we had a lot of fun playing it together even when I was getting yelled at for nothING. It probably isn’t the kind of game I would play on my own, but with friends it’s an interesting concept to experience.

Unlike a different game we spent some time playing, Enter the Gungeon. That’s the kind of rogue-like I’m legitimately considered getting for the Switch.

Though I’m conflicted between getting that game or Hollow Knight, which I’ve talked about before.

Either way I think I’ll probably be getting a new game on my Switch at some point this week since I just got a little extra financial security through my SPJ scholarship, I’m just not sure which one.

I suppose if anyone has some suggestions for that, I’d be open to hearing those too!

Perhaps I’ll even throw out a poll on Twitter, see if that gains any traction. I’ve never done that sort of thing before so it might be fun.

We’ll see.

No matter what I’m going to stop rambling and let you all go, because this is getting a little ridiculous for a dumb space filling post. Hope everyone out there had a good weekend!


P.S. — Featured Image courtesy of Metacritic

Glendale Friendventure

Glendale Friendventure

Once again I spent all day today with some friends off on a friendventure. So instead of a long, intricate post, I just figured I would do a real quick run through of all the photos I took as something fun.

We went well off the beaten path for our usual hangouts by going to the Glendale Galleria, a large mall in… Well, Glendale. It was somewhere Juan and I had been to before but nobody else had, so we figured it would be a good place to just explore since it’s a real big area.

Plus Juan wanted to go to the LEGO store to buy something, and it was either there or Downtown Disney.

After an almost hour-and-a-half drive (both there and back I might add, with all five of us packed into my car just chatting and having a good time), we wound up in a totally different world, surrounded by so many fancy cars that we decided to affectionately title our trip “Detroit becomes Glendale” after the current future-set David Cage experience everyone’s pretty into right now.

The first store we went into was this place called Box Lunch, which seemed to be the less angst-ridden version of Hot Topic. While there we discovered, among other things, this figure of Sora from Kingdom Hearts:

He’s seen some things, man.

I also decided to snap this photo of a Guardians of the Galaxy t-shirt to share with Aly, since it seemed right up her alley.

Needless to say she was a fan:

Then we started to really wander the place. One of the things that stood out was this absolutely incredible advertisement starring Johnny Depp:

He’s straight up about to be eaten by that wolf.

Also, we had a very long debate on whether or not the name of the cologne was someone misspelling “sausage” or “savage.” Either way someone definitely should have been fired, we decided.

Soon enough we made it to the LEGO store for the first time, because we were going to confirm they had the set Juan wanted before coming back later to buy it so he didn’t have to carry the whole thing around all day.

Here he is playing with the machine that makes sets build in front of you in augmented reality:

Mitchell, Jonathan and I can be seen off in the background of the video screen by the way. Fun fact, I suppose.

We also discovered a number of things. First, the fact that porg LEGOs exist. Second, that the Millennium Falcon LEGO set is 800 god damn dollars.

I’m honestly not sure which of those facts is more shocking, even hours later.

From there a lot of the journey was relatively uneventful. Mostly just walking and talking.

Eventually we wound up in an area with a Japanese pop culture store that had awfully suggested figurines to an almost comic degree, as well as plenty of stores under construction.

Including a place called PLAYlive Nation, which is apparently just a lounge that people can come in and play video games together.

Another fun fact, the second selling point on the place’s website is that it gets gamers out of the house to make friends.

Seems like an awfully savage thing to put so high on the features list in my opinion, especially since just across the street was an icon of gamer hangout spots:

Hey it’s Mitchell, what’s up dude?

A R E. Y O U. G A M E?

Also this was a place.

I’m just not going to say anything, because we thought it was suggestive enough on its own.

Speaking of food, however, that was what we did next. Juan got Blaze Pizza, Tiana got Boba, Jonathan and I got Five Guys, and Mitchell…

Well he didn’t get anything.

Except the pleasure of enjoying this New Yorker article about Incredibles 2 that Tiana introduced us to because WOW it’s just unreasonably suggestive of all the sexual baggage the movie leaves with the parents who go to see it.

It’s absolutely incredible and worth a read.

We also discovered this Build-A-Bear Workshop kiosk which was… Odd. To say the least.

Seems like the kind of place that makes infinitely more sense as a store, but oh well. This serves the purpose just as well, I suppose.

By that point we had essentially circled the entire mall, so of course our last stop was the LEGO store redux. Juan bought himself a giant set while the rest of us goofed off a little.

Tiana and I had a pretty good time just building with LEGO pieces at one of the builder stations. I even made this neat mini house!

I guess it kind of looks more like a car than a house… But still.

Are you proud of me yet, internet?

I sure hope so. Because some much younger kids came to play with the LEGO pieces and we just sort of backed away awkwardly as the grown adults we are.

Once the set was bought, we made our way home again. An hour-and-a-half worth of a drive later we were back in Redondo, where we got to play video games and watch the second live action Scooby Doo movie.

It’s super fun having adult friends, guys.