Please sign in or sign up!
  • Forget your password?
  • Want to sign up?
  •       ...blogs for gamers

    Find a GameLog
    ... by game ... by platform
    advanced search  advanced search ]
    Recent Entries

    Aug 28th, 2018 at 12:15:22     -    Little Nightmares (XBONE)

    I finally got past the last "puzzle" that stopped my play session last time. Turns out you have to climb up a chain. In my opinion, there was some bad design choices in this particular section that comes up during other sections. Little nightmares has a very dark background and little light, which makes light and color a very powerful tool for guiding the player. Now I know the developers know about this tool and have taken it from their tool box a couple times. Why then didn't they here? The character has climbed some things to get to this chain but it is not obvious that the chain is climbable or that you are supposed to be traveling up. A little bit of lighting would have definitely helped guide the player up through this section and cemented the idea in the players mind that climbing is always an option and to try climbing more objects.

    Enough of the design tangent. We still haven't seen much of ethical choices in the mechanics of the game (Save for that " Choice" to save the little gnome) but there has been some interesting use of set dressing on already used mechanics to give the ethical player a pause. During the section in question the player is captured by the monster, and to escape the player has to solve a puzzle. To this point this puzzle and mechanic of exploring the environment and then using it in some way to reach their goal has been done a good number of times. This puzzle though gives you pause. The box isn't just a box, but a cage holding a captured child like you. There is no way to free this child, I tried. You just have to drag the helpless chap, climb up his prison, and free yourself. That , in my opinion, is a very powerful use of set dressing to make a standard mechanic more compelling.

    Lastly, the gnome friends have been more prevalent in this play session! They have been scampering away from the same hiding places the monster has you diving for. There was one particular section that affirmed my decision to free the earlier gnome, and was also a very successful use of tension.
    You use an elevator to reach a higher level and clear your path, before entering the elevator was a section of you hiding and being chased by the main monster. The elevator is very sparse with not much cover, and I spent the entire ride cowered in the one hiding place I could find. The ride is uneventful and you're given a bit of a tense breather. Some puzzling and some platforming follows and a chase sequences that ends up back in the elevator, this time with the monster there with you. He slowly checks the first spot, comes over to your spot and just as he is about to catch you, the gnomes run through and he gives chase to this new prey. Saved by the gnomes!

    Some might think this game is all about the monsters, but I'd argue that it's about the creatures cowering with you. These creatures face the same grim fate as you, but still come to your aid at times and you to them.

    add a comment Add comment  -  read this GameLog read

    Aug 24th, 2018 at 16:01:10     -    Little Nightmares (XBONE)

    I started Little nightmares today. I will definitely say playing this in the well lit library is not the intended atmosphere but the game is pulling me in nonetheless. As far as mechanics its pretty much so far a bog standard narrative platformer. There isn't a way to attack enemies(yet) and the game-play mostly consists of trying to move forward, avoiding hazards, and light puzzles to clear the path. Mechanically this game hasn't really touched anything about ethics or ethical dilemmas.

    The subject of this game on the other hand seems to be pointing towards something a little deeper. The back of the case states that the game is about exploring childhood fears. Seeing the world from a different perspective is always a fun exercise. The environmental story telling in the game has been great so far, but I'm not far enough to form any coherent story line or connect the disparate story threads. A lot of environments and hazards have seemed to point to some kind of orphanage. That along with the hanging man early in the game might point to the child's fear of abandonment after their father committed suicide. I'll have to play and look around more to see if my theory is correct.

    read comments (1) read comments  -  add a comment Add comment  -  read this GameLog read

    Feb 24th, 2017 at 17:25:02     -    Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor (PS4)

    Another play session of Shadow of Mordor and man this is not going to be an easy paper to write! Mechanically I'm really enjoying the game, it is super fun to play the controls are tight visually the game is good looking and the theme of killing orcs and the changing power struggles of their captains is super tight. Trying to look at this game through some different lenses its not giving me much. Its hard to say all the killing I'm doing in the game, and it is a massive amount of killing, is ethically questionable when every animation and idle thing my enemy does is mustache twirlingly evil. The biggest moral question might be hidden in the mechanics and well my attention span. Everywhere you walk in this game world there is suffering and slaves that morally should be freed. But i just do not have enough time to kill every guard and free every person ans still be able to advance the story to defeat the overall threat. That might be a good ethical question to explore, whether it is better to help everyone you can whenever you can or to quickly try to decimate the leadership of the Orcs. I'll have to play more to think about this.

    read comments (1) read comments  -  add a comment Add comment  -  read this GameLog read

    Feb 22nd, 2017 at 23:49:45     -    Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor (PS4)

    Well I was wondering where my ethical questions would come from and this play session has seemed to answer that question. Not in the amount of orcs and monster I'm killing but in the power play between killing war chiefs and promoting orcs that are aligned with my causes. This is a bit of a moral grey area because as i said with my last entry the orcs have yet to show any reason they should not be considered pure spawn of evil, but now I'm actively helping one to achieve my greater good. This offers a pretty good base for interesting ethical questions. It also brings to mind another recent game I've played with an enemy that is evil incarnate, Doom. In Doom one of the defining characteristics of the doom marine is that he faces this moral question and steadfastly abides by the code that all evil must be killed in the most gruesome way possible. This is in contrast to Shadow of Mordor, even if our character has a similar disposition to orcs he still uses them to reach his greater goal. There may be a paper in this game yet.

    add a comment Add comment  -  read this GameLog read

    next   More Recent EntriesOlder Entries   next
    Barnes's GameLogs
    Barnes has been with GameLog for 4 years, 10 months, and 15 days
    RSS Feed
    view feed xml
    Entries written to date: 10
      Game Status / Read GameLog
    1Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons (PC)Stopped playing - Got Bored
    2Little Nightmares (XBONE)Stopped playing - Something better came along
    3Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor (PS4)Stopped playing - Got Bored
    4Nier: Automata (PS4)Playing


    games - logs - members - about - help - recent updates

    Copyright 2004-2014