Keyboard Geniuses is our weekly glance at a few intriguing, witty, or otherwise notable posts from the Gameological discussion threads. Comments have been excerpted and edited here for grammar, length, and/or clarity. You can follow the links to see the full threads.
This week, Clayton Purdom continued his ongoing review of Destiny 2 with a second entry bemoaning what he perceived to be a massive jump in the level of commitment the game demands. For those who don’t know, one of the most advanced activities Destiny offers is a lengthy mission known as a Raid (a concept taken from online RPGs like World Of Warcraft). It’s possible to get through a Raid alone or with a small group, but they’re designed to be played with groups of six who are putting in a lot of effort to cooperate and communicate for the several hours it could take to get through the mission (or even just one leg of the mission). The game doesn’t let you get matched into a group, so you either need to have a dedicated squad or find one using a website, like DestinyLFG (Looking For Group). Commenter sodas-and-fries mentioned that particular site, while popular, might be a crapshoot for a Raid rookie who’s looking for partners, but MummyUnderYourBed shared an alternative:
The thing about finding people via LFG is it just kinda depends on which LFG service you use. The only one I’ve really used is the100.io, and I would recommend it. Its focus isn’t entirely on “putting up a post because you need other players right now” but rather you can put up a post for any day or time in the future and let others join the game as they please, and you can type in anything you’d like to say and even tag it as a session that encourages beginners to join or is looking for a sherpa/guide. In a few weeks my girlfriend will be out of town all weekend, so I’m going to put up a post that week to do a Raid. I’ll specify the day and time I want, and I’ll mention I’ve never done it, and I’ll tag it for other newbies to join and also request a sherpa. Then I’ll let it sit and wait for five others to join throughout the week.
the100.io site changed my Destiny experience for the best. First, I found could schedule Raid and Nightfall runs and be sure of having people to run them with, which was great because even though I had a few real-life friends playing, it was a rare thing that six of us (or even three for a Nightfall) would be online at the same time.
With the100.io, I suddenly know that I could run the Nightfall every Tuesday, no problem. And I could get into a Raid run or two every week. With the100, you can be “assigned” to a group of people who play at roughly the same time you do and can even match you by age. Within two to four weeks of setting sessions in the same group I started to recognize people who joined and adding most of them to my friends list. Three years later, all those people from Delta Co 582 (random generated name of our group by the100) have an actual clan with over 80 active members and play with each other on a daily basis.
Elsewhere, wykstrad told an amusing/mortifying story from Grand Theft Auto Online that summed up many people’s online gaming anxieties:
I don’t generally play games online, especially games that require teamwork. This weekend, I had nothing much to do, so I decided to play some GTA Online because at least there’s no expectation that everyone won’t act like a total asshole in a GTA game.
When I was in the game, I saw that my in-game cell phone had something called “jobs,” which seemed like team-based challenges. The one that came up the most often had one player flying a B-52 bomber and three other players manning turrets to shoot down the other team, who would attack the bomber in infinitely respawning attack helicopters until it got shot down. Then the teams would trade places. After getting a few invitations to this challenge, I took it, figuring that I would probably get a position on a turret, and even if I wasn’t that good, it would be hard for the others to figure that out.
Instead, I somehow got assigned as the pilot for the B-52. Worse, there was apparently some sort of boost mechanism you were supposed to use to take off, only I couldn’t find it. As I slowly taxied down the runway, trying to take off with just the force from the propellers, the right side of my screen filled up with gamechat of everyone screaming at me to use boost. The more helpful ones kept telling me to “HIT SHIFT,” but I was using a controller because I like using a controller for GTA, and I didn’t know how to bring up the game chat menu to write that, and my fingers were kind of busy working the controller buttons to slowly get the plane into the air as the attack helicopters converged. After the plane was destroyed in short order, “you fucking noob” comments began to rain down on me, which, uh, guilty, I guess. But I’ve been a “fucking noob” at a lot of things in the past, and it’s only in gaming that people have tried to make me actively feel bad for not having devoted a huge chunk of past time to learning the activity I was now trying to learn.
This week also saw my
review of Death Of The Outsider,
a new entry in Arkane’s Dishonored series
of supernatural-assassin simulators. I pointed out that it felt like
this side story was pushing you a little harder toward violence than
the past games, especially with the removal of the “chaos”
system, which tracks you much blood you let and alters the story and
world accordingly. Duwease
was never a fan of it:
I’m glad that the morality meter was scrapped, because it was so bizarre and clunky, anyway. Some of the “good” ways of handling people seemed far more cruel than just ending their lives in a flash.
And Drinking with Skeletons hated how the system dissuaded them from using all the game’s coolest features:
What irked me about the Chaos system was the way the game would judge you at the end. I’m fine with the logic of how things change, and I like the moral ambiguity that most, if not all, of the nonlethal resolutions were arguably worse than murder, but don’t give me a shitload of powers and gadgets geared towards violence and a motivation of “revenge” and then tut-tut at me that I killed people on my ruthless quest for vengeance.
But SweetChigurh points out that there’s a pretty strong thematic reasoning for existence beyond the whole “plague infest rats eat all the dead bodies” thing:
Because that’s the point! Abuse of power can corrupt you, and if you don’t want that to happen then you should use it in ways that don’t cause too much damage or harm. If you keep using these supernatural powers to kill loads of guards and destabilize the city, then the people Corvo and Emily are allied with will begin to change. They’ll become more desperate because the situation has become desperate due to the aforementioned destabilization, and Corvo and Emily will change because how could they not? If someone is thrust into a situation that involves them killing lots of people over a period of time, then how could they not change as a person?
That’ll do it for this week, Gameologians. As always, thank you for
reading and commenting. We’ll see you all next week!