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    May 29th, 2012 at 03:31:55     -    Super Columbine Massacre RPG (PC)

    On my third play I continued leveling up this time I entered the gym where the boys let another person escape stating how it is not some miracle but because they choose to let her live. Upon leaving I was greeted to another cut scene this one of Eric being beaten up by some jocks. I also notice that in replenishing health Eric is allowed to replenish by taking Anti-depressants while Dylan is not. This along with the girlfriend cut scene makes me feel like Dylan was the leader and Eric who was just the weaker of the two followed along to feel some kind of connection to another human being. The next new place I found was the stage’s lighting room where you see a cut scene from a Frankenstein play. After the boys talk about how they too have become monsters because of the evil doctor which is society. By playing this second time through and finding more places like this I realize even while going through the school committing this crime they most likely were having their own self-realization at moments.

    A part of the game that seemed wrong to put in was in the upstairs bathrooms. In the boys’ bathroom a smaller boy is being picked on by some jocks. You proceed to kill the jocks and let the boy escape and he gives you the reward of health packs. This section seems to glorify their acts and almost treat them as heroes. I as well as others probably felt this was wrong to do. In the girls’ bathroom your character makes jokes about a girl being on her period after you kill her and about the janitor fixing the leaky roof would be confused for a third shooter. While I laughed a little other people may take these bathroom jokes as bad humor. But if the creator was to throw any jokes in then the bathrooms would be the best place for them. The last person I found that was able to live I found in the library. He asks your characters what they are doing they respond “just killing people”. This made me question what parts of this game were actually real. So I investigated online and read an account of what had actually happened. I found that the boy in the library and the boy in the lot were both actually confronted and allowed to leave but the game uses different names. I also read about the majority of incidents occurring in the library so I played through the library some more to see what actual events were included. I found there is a church girl that the boys asking if she believed in God which they kill in the game. The game followed a rumored story and not the true story where the girl actually lives and doesn’t get killed. This is another place where the game succeeds in getting players to investigate what really did happen. I continued playing the game making my way through hell but stopped through as I got bored with the game after about twenty minutes. While I consider myself an RPG fan this one just seemed to get tedious.

    As a whole the game was average. The main draw to me was the story it portrays and the fact it gets players to think about the topic. There are a few parts where I feel the creator counteracted points he was trying to make about violence, video games, and music, but some of these may have been done on purpose in a satirical sense. The game did include moral and philosophical aspects throughout and I feel the game’s main focus was to push anti-bulling and just critique society as a whole. I feel the creator chose to use the Columbine background since it would get more attention to show his artistic aspects. This game could have been made with the same message using different characters in a different setting and portrayed the same plot but it would have not received the same attention. In a game rating I give it an average 5, but in the artistic sense it would receive a higher rating as it is using the game media to get it’s point across in a creative way. It mixes in actual events and details with some of the creators ideas. This makes the game feel like it is the boys’ actual thoughts at times when it very well may not be.

    The inclusion of poems and lyrics to music after the cut scenes made the games message stronger since it show the ideas that the boys/creator have are not different from others throughout history. While I would not consider the boys heroes in any sense the game tries to make them such at times. While their ideas and feelings may be right and just their actions upon their thoughts is not. This is where the player must distinguish just because you feel strongly about something; violence is not the best answer for portraying your thoughts and getting your point across. I feel this aspect of the game should be pushed more. While it may be there I did not notice it on my play through. The game itself is a good way of portraying such ideas but younger players may not pick up on this. As with most games I feel this game is a valuable tool to get the word and ideas out to the public but not everyone should be allowed to play it since they may not understand the underlying motivation. Also in telling people I was playing this game I received mixed reviews. Some people were disgusted just hearing about it others were disgusted but had a slight open mind to it after I talked about it more, and one person was even happy just to hear I had downloaded it and wanted to try it themselves. The most entertaining was in telling my mother and telling her how I agreed with some of the message the game was portraying. After reassurance it wasn’t in the method of the way the actual event occurred but the message being made by the creator of the game she felt a little better but was still slightly uneasy. Just as I received mixed reviews about playing the game I understand how this game as a whole will receive mixed reviews to society.

    The best advice I can give to players starting this game is to play with an open mind explore everywhere and do everything you can. Realize the feelings it gives you as you play and shoot innocents and see how it affects your play-style. In my first play I found myself avoiding fights even though unlimited ammo was just one screen away. I felt my morals kicked in at times as I only killed people who got in my way of reaching my goal. In my second play through of grinding I noticed I almost detached myself from the game skipping dialog and playing with a TV on in the background paying more attention to it than the game. When I did have to chase down a student running down the hall or had to corner someone who kept dodging I did feel a little uneasy at first but I eventually fell into a gamer’s usual detachment from the real world. While this may be a real world event it is all just a virtual portrayal of the real world.

    This entry has been edited 2 times. It was last edited on May 29th, 2012 at 03:35:47.

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    May 28th, 2012 at 23:31:36     -    Super Columbine Massacre RPG (PC)

    So in my second play through I started in the hell section and it sure was hell starting out. Having not killed many people in the school section my character was only a level 14 which made it even harder to progress through with no health replenishing items. I was able to meet up with Eric but was quickly surrounded and had to make it out but was unable to multiple times. So I was stuck reloading a previous save I had made before the school shooting. I was disappointed that the game forces you to kill off students to level up your character. It showed me to get through the entire game without killing an innocent student would be impossible.

    Playing through I started killing every student just to level up and the game felt like a boring grind through levels if I were to play through aiming to kill only jocks or nerds I would not be able to level as much which was my current goal. Last time I played through in the cafeteria I did not kill as many people and this time since I did I was introduced to a new cuts scene of Dylan sitting alone at lunch and talked about how he grew to only want to sit alone to remind him of the hate he felt for everyone. This helps show the background of his life and how the crime had been premeditated for years now. This speech references the Allegory of the Cave by Plato in how he felt he was higher than everyone else something more than just a shadow, he felt he had transcended them all. The game then displays T.S. Elliot’s The Hollow Men. After the poem you gain more combat points, the song The Beautiful People starts, and you are to continue on your rampage of the school. For the creator to put this in contradicts his earlier point that the music does not lead to violence since he is trying to use it to drive you to kill more students.

    Having spent most of this half hour trying to get through the impossible hell section and re-leveling up my half hour was up faster than I had expected. I also found myself trying to find more hidden items then before. I also ran into two characters that seem unique as if they would only appear once. The first was when I started the killing and warn a boy to leave since he was liked by Eric and Dylan. The prom queen was the second she seems like a unique character like the openly gay student who you only run into one time. I think the creator may have wanted to create dialog for these two NPCs but may not have by the end of the game. The boy who was allowed to leave brings up an interesting argument in the boys ideology. If only the strong were to survive why was he allowed to leave just because they liked him as a person? It also shows the boys were of sound mind in a sense because they too still had their own code of ethics they would not break. It also got me thinking how must the boy who was allowed to live must feel about the situation. I soon wondered where was he now and how did he cope with the incident. I questioned how would I react if I were that boy? If this game has done nothing else it has gotten me to reflect on the incident that many people have put to the back of their mind, and only bring up when a similar incident occurs.

    This entry has been edited 1 time. It was last edited on May 29th, 2012 at 03:34:15.

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    May 25th, 2012 at 08:10:50     -    Super Columbine Massacre RPG (PC)

    In starting Super Columbine Massacre RPG I was not sure what to expect. In playing my first time playing I went through a variety of emotions from enthralled trying to find different items to boredom and even confusion. You start of in Eric’s room and the game feels like a traditional RPG with the ability to search a variety of objects picking up a few as you go along. For example you find a copy of DOOM in your bedroom and a Manson Cd in your basement which I latter found out are equip-able and actually boost your stats which I found a little amusing. When you pick up these items or investigate areas a brief dialog talking about them comes up as though Eric is talking about the items. These are used to paint a background of who Eric was in real life. Like how he enjoyed DOOM and actual made custom levels for it and how while he owned the Manson CD he really didn’t like it and knew that people would blame the music for driving him to what he did. The game continues on guiding you through the day and how Eric and Dylan prepped for their plan.

    Having played through the entire shooting I could guide this review through point by point on the actions I performed, but I will instead only point out things I found interesting about the game itself and how I reacted to certain parts of the game. The first point is how the game almost feels like a traditional RPG at points but then at others does not. When I first started and found you could investigate things I thought they may have made this game like any RPG. While the house section is once I got to the school I found out it wasn’t. I found myself trying to search other cars for items like in a traditional RPG where hidden items could be found but I found nothing in them. Next when I entered the school I thought maybe there would be a dialog with different people and I tried talking to two different people unfortunately I found out this just makes you fail and kicks you out of the school. Once in the cafeteria I tried using the vending machine and pulled the fire alarm which once again kicked me out. I had figured if it were useable but shouldn’t be used yet that I would have been given a warning dialog but I found out the hard way I was wrong. Latter when shooting up the school I did find a few interactive items such as a computer that gave me the Anarchist Cook Book. And a few students and teachers that gave dialog chains such as an English teacher and some kids in the bathrooms.

    Another part I found interesting was the flashbacks that occur when you investigate different items. This first I found was the pizza box in the house which gave a little more background of Eric’s and Dylan’s relationship. The second I found was in the Library if you use a computer it gives you of a flashback of Eric’s only relationship and how his failure with women helped make him feel like even more of an outcast. Once you are in the library and the boys kill themselves the game goes through a collage of photos from both the event and the boy’s life and death. I felt this was to be an artistic memorial and made the game have that type of feel. If this was where the game ended I would feel that was the goal of this game to remember and try to explain what the boys dealt with in real life. I was surprised to find that after the collage the game continued on and this is where I stopped for my first play through. My plan is to pick up from here for my second playing and on my third going back through the first part of the game and expanding on things I may have missed and dissecting the individual sections of dialog and how it relates to things we discussed in class. One example I want to discuss is how different people may play this game and is there a right way or wrong way to play through it.

    This entry has been edited 1 time. It was last edited on May 29th, 2012 at 03:32:37.

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    Apr 19th, 2012 at 14:43:59     -    Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas (PC)

    In my third play through I continued on with the missions and a few stood out and got me to wondering where the game would be going. The first mission that stood out most for ethical reasons is the mission where you pick up Jeffery and have to take out Freddy. Jeffery has just gotten out of prison as is now a “gangster”. After reaching Freddy’s house you find out Freddy had sexual taken advantage of Jeffery in prison. This could explain why the developers gave Jeffery a higher pitched voice. Lines like dropping the soap and wanting a fast ass and not a slow ass are stated by Freddy while you chase him on a bike. I almost wanted to let him escape more to see what else he would say.

    The tension between CJ and his brother seems to be growing as his brother is sending him on more risky missions with the point of just obtaining more guns. CJ seems to feel that his brother is having a substance abuse problem and even tells him to lay off it next time they go out. I feel this relationship will be hitting a boiling point soon.

    The missions with Smoke have also become a little more outrages. CJ is still going along with them but Smokes motives do not seem clear. Smoke has CJ taking on multiple games and has been seen with multiple outside groups like the police and a rival gang. It makes me question if Smoke is trying to play multiple sides and not loyal to the Groves as he states.

    Overall the game seems like after another half hour or so it will hit a semi-climatic point. Depending on what type of person plays this game I feel different reactions would be had by the player. The problem is this game just reinforces social stereotypes. All cops are crooked and out to take advantage of the black man, all blacks and Hispanics are gangsters, and if you go to prison you will be raped. What I have not seen is a single poor white person in this gang filled area. Minus the Russian group the only ones have been working respectable jobs and not being in a gang, and the Russian group is larger and more organized. The question is was the developer trying to purposely be stereotypical out of fun, or just painting an image most people believe just to sell a game and make money.

    This entry has been edited 1 time. It was last edited on Apr 19th, 2012 at 14:44:42.

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