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    Aug 9th, 2011 at 12:10:05     -    Super Columbine Massacre RPG (PC)

    While playing for the third time, I noticed a few details about the game that I had not paid much attention to. The first, is that every single person (that I saw so far) has been caucasion, without any other ethnicity being represented at the school. I wondered if they were left out for a couple of reasons. The first, that just like the boy that was being bullied, who they let leave, the minorities were also opressed, and therefore not targets for Eric and Dylan. Another would be if factually, there were no other ethnicities represented at the school during the time of the massacre.
    Another thing I noticed was that the only religion mentioned is Catholicism. I wondered if this was because it was a religious school, or if it had some significance to the storyline. I also did not understand the purpose of the 'church boy' type of student. While jocks tend to be arrogant, and prep boys as well, I don't know enough about the 'church boy' type of student to understand that they fall into the same categories as the others(i.e. bullies, arrogant, etc.) I thought that maybe it was because they fall into a different category, similiar to the teachers, which is that of people who tell others what they should be doing. This would be supported by the scene right before they die (really as they die) where they say that one of the main easons for them hating their lives was people trying to force them into routines of stupid/ boring/pointless activities.
    Lastly, I noticed the simplicity and the complexity of the 'hell' that they were sent to. It looks like a crude, simplistic place when you first start out, as its just a drawing or picture with a bridge superimposed upon it. Later, the map becomes much more complicated and interesting. For one thing, there are various types of monsters in hell, and they each have different abilities (it seems) which was very different from the first part of the game. Another thing that was interesting was that it actually seemed like it was raining in hell, which seemed to me to be an interesting and unique twist to the way it is depicted in most theologies.

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    Aug 8th, 2011 at 23:43:47     -    Super Columbine Massacre RPG (PC)

    During my second time playing Super Columbine Massacre, I noticed a few basic similiarities between it and other games I have played. I noticed that at least in the beginning, it starts out the same way many role playing games on gameboy do: The player wakes up in his room (for some reason the room always looks the same, has a computer and a tv-usually with gaming console attached) and receives some sort of message about what he is supposed to do next, as in meet someone, go outside, etc. The images also reminded me in particular of Golden Sun, and vaguely of the times I played the Pokemon gameboy games. While playing, I wondered if there could be any sort of copyright infringement which could be claimed by Nintendo™.

    When the game uses Marilyn Manson and other bands as examples of what the two kids were used to listening to, I wondered if they received permission from those bands to portray them in that manner, or if they had not needed nor pursued that option. After wandering around and looking at the familiar things in the game, I decided to procede with what I had been doing before- randomly jumping students, teachers and workers. Immediately, I tried to figure out what happened to all the equipment that was mentioned in the list of items that the students had taken from their car. Unfortunately, I did not find any trace of the numerous explosive devices listed, nor any menu which would tell me that I had them, and was merely unable to use them. This disappointed me, as I wanted to set up a bomb or two at the entrance to the lunch room, and wait till it was about to go off to pull the fire alarm, rather than merely pulling the alarm with no visible consequences.

    As I wrote the past sentence, it suddenly struck me that while playing the game, I had suddenly experienced the urge to randomly maximize the destruction I could cause, even though I would not receive a benefit of any kind for doing so. It seemed to me that the developers wanted to show people that even though before playing such a game, a normal person might deny ever being able to entertain thoughts of enjoying causing someone pain, after playing the game for just a short amount of time, it suddenly becomes obvious that when playing the game, the focus is on maximizing chaos, destruction and death- all for enjoyment.

    This entry has been edited 1 time. It was last edited on Aug 8th, 2011 at 23:44:56.

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    Aug 7th, 2011 at 23:28:49     -    Super Columbine Massacre RPG (PC)

    Recently, I played Super Columbine Massacre RPG, a game which depicts the April 20th, 1999 shooting incident at Columbine High School, Littleton, Colorado. When I began play, I immediately felt bewildered, as there was no help option or menu, and no instructions in game as to what buttons were meant to control which fuctions. Via trial and error, I managed to work my way down to the basement, where the two students, Eric Harris and Dyan Klebold, had stashed their bombs. I noticed the popup which occurred when you looked at the Marilyn Manson cd, and also made note of the flashback to a time when they might first have plotted their actions. Once again, I was stymied as to what I should do next, but soon figured out what I needed to do. Again, I was confused as to why the developers decided to make a game where the player doesn't know what exactly he is supposed to be doing.

    Once the students arrived at the school, they decided on when they wanted their bombs to go off, and left it up to the player to get past the cameras and the hall monitors to get the bombs to the proper location. I didn't really understand the point of this, as the cameras (I assume) wouldnt have shown anything worse than two students walking to the lunchroom with duffel bags, and as they were planning on going on a shooting spree after the bombs went off, why would they care if they were found out after the fact? In addition, the walking down the hall in trenchcoats... very suspicious, if they had any modicum of intelligence they would have left the trenchcoats outside until the bombs were planted.

    After they started their shooting spree, I would have assumed that some kid would have ran off to the police, or at least hidden in their car. Not only did I not notice any activity of the kind, I noticed that they were randomly running in predetermined routes which did not seem to make much sense to me. If students at a school hear gunfire, the first response is not to run around like a headless chicken, but rather to run as far away as possible, or to run towards the noise to see what is going on. The fact that there did not seem to be any security guard at the school, but that there were cameras all over seemed abit inconsistent, and the way that the monitors only stopped you if they ran into you...also seemed rather foolish to me. The final stroke of idiocy, in my opinion, was after you walk back into school at the lunch break, everyone is running around, as if something had happened. Unless the bombs had been found, why would they have thought anything was wrong? Another question I had was why the students did not simply walk into school and retime the bombs? At the least they could have removed them and set them the next day.

    I found many problems with the logic used in the game, and with the way the game expects the players to automatically understand what they are supposed to do. Eric and Dylan also act extraordinarily short-sightedly when they decide to begin shooting when the bombs did not go off. For a pair of students who managed to gather the weapons and equipment to go through with the operation, it does not seem correct that they would do something so rashly.

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    Jul 28th, 2011 at 11:35:17     -    Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas (PC)

    For my third time playing Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, I decided to ignore the plotline and explore the game for myself. I was extremely disappointed in the lack of meaningful content outside of the main storyline and in other content. I understand that there are missions for driving an ambulance, driving a car, apprehending suspects, etc, but they all have the same thing in common. Namely, they all merely seemed to have the player practice his driving skills. If I wanted to play a game like that, Id play a racing game, not a game that is supposed to be about people in the 'hood. I found the ratio of number of pedestrians to type of pedestrians extremely odd, since there are many people walking the streets. Many of them look exactly the same to me, and shows a lack of creativity in the design of the game, in my opinion.

    Due to my dislike of the driving system, which basically seems to be 'use the arrow keys, and if you hit someone, keep going,' I found myself biking around the neighborhood randomly trying to see how far I good get in a good jump onto the highway without the bike falling over. That was fun, since I could try timing it with a car going by. I also got bored from this, and eventually just stole a car and went on a rampage through the city. I guess that that may be one of the issues with the game that others raise, showing kids that when they dont have anything else to do they should wreck stuff, steal stuff, kill people, etc

    My overall opinion on the game seems not very complimentary, and thats mainly because thats how I see it. I disliked it because I don't like single player campaign type games due to the lack of; a) mutability, the AI has a limited number of choices, and often the player doesn't know why it makes one over the other, b) social contact with other people, games are often more enjoyable (at least for me) when there are other people I can play with and / or chat with as I am playing. This game does not seem to support either, though as I didn't go through all the options, I cannot state it as a certainty.

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