dblandin's Super Columbine Massacre RPG (PC)
| [May 17, 2010 11:37:05 AM]
| After a long cut-scene of photos from the real event including photos of Eric and Dylan before the shooting and photos of the victim’s families and friends after the shooting, the gamer suddenly finds himself (or herself) in hell trying to escape demons as the chase you…|
For me, this was the most appalling segment of the game. I thought it was incredibly disrespectful and downright cruel to depict any person’s memory in Hell chased by demons especially after viewing a particularly sobering cut-scene of the tragedy.
After playing through Hell for 30 minutes, and repeatedly dying at the hands of demons I stopped playing the game.
Just from a technical perspective, the game is infuriating in that it offers few clues outside of the narrative as to what to do – no maps and no “objectives”. This makes for very a very unpleasant gaming experience.
From an ethical perspective, I don’t think there is anything wrong with making a game like this if the intentions are from a baseline of understanding. If the goal of the game creators is purely to bring some understanding of the event and those affected to the gamer through the gameplay then that’s fine. This game seems to have too strong of an agenda and strong negative judgments for gamers to think for themselves.
The argument the games seems to be pushing is that violent games, movies, television, and music was the number one accelerant in Dylan and Eric’s path towards the extreme violence and aggression of April 20th, 1999 and that their actions have surely sent them to Hell. I wonder who created/financed this game…
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| [May 17, 2010 11:11:23 AM]
| With a quick search on Google I found a walkthrough for the game which instructed me to plant two bombs, one on each end of the cafeteria. With this new knowledge I was able to successfully plant the bombs and get out of the school. I first wandered around the park not sure of what to do but then reloaded my saved game and figured out that I forgot to gather the weapons in the car. So I went back to the car, got the duffel bags full of weapons and went to the park where Dylan was waiting on a bench far to the right.|
After a retrospective cut-scene we loaded up “to the teeth” with shotguns, automatic weapons, pistols, small bombs, and knifes.
We went back to the parking lot to watch the bombs explode and none of them worked. After the third bomb failed to detonate we went on a killing spree through the parking lot. Eric told one kid that he likes him and that he should go home. But no other kids on the parking lot received like mercy. Wandering around the parking lot and encountering kids, pokemon-like battles took place. I manually completed a few battles but quickly switched over to the auto mode. The fact that there is an auto mode at all kind of tells you that the battles are pretty pointless…
Through the parking lot and the school building, Dylan and I killed pretty girls, openly gay men (odd character inclusion – doesn’t seem like your normal high school stereotype), goodie goodie girls, popular girls, nerdy girls, church boys, janitors, sheltered girls, and various teachers.
When destroying computers in the library the game showed a cut-scene of the president Bill Clinton addressing the nation regarding the tragedy in progress.
Another cut-scene went back to when Eric was in love with an older woman when he was 17 named Brenda.
The cops came and a cut-scene takes place showing Eric and Dylan on an island where no one could touch them or tell them what to do – free of “shitheads”. Back in the school, Eric and Dylan just committed suicide.
I thought it was odd and pretty sexist that every girl seemed to have no health at all and only "braced for attacks". The jocks and the janitors seemed to be strongest of the victims.
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| [May 16, 2010 11:45:42 PM]
| The first thing I noticed about the gameplay was how hard the text is to read!|
After waking up in the game, I started to wander around the room. I went over to the stereo, pressed ENTER, and Nirvana started to play. I went over to the video game console and learned that the Eric is into Doom, the video game of “desensitized violence”. I went over to the calendar and learned of the current data: Tuesday, April 20th, 1999. Now the Nirvana makes sense. I learn of his attempt to join the marines which was denied due to his prescription of Luvox, an antidepressant.
With a phone call, I learned that he and his friend Dylan plan to commit mass homicide that day. Their cover is a bowling class.
Eric calls Dylan the nickname “V” on the phone which I later learn is short for Vodka.
Dylan calls Eric “Reb” which I assume is short for Rebel.
I went down to basement to gear up for the event.
There is a Marilyn Manson CD in the room which encourages “impulsive aggression and rage”.
I can clearly tell so far that this game is making the argument that these additions to a young man’s life – violent video games, rock music with mature, sometimes troubling lyrics - promote aggressive behavior and hatred.
I went over to the two large propane bombs and place them into two duffel bags on a table. While waiting for Dylan to arrive I explored the large basement room. I discovered the plan written out. I will place the bombs somewhere, gear up in a park, and then attack once they go off. I am still unsure where the bombing will take place and its significance to Eric and Dylan.
I came across some pizza which triggered a flashback.
Dylan and Eric were using something called Black Powder in a discrete location. They used it to blow up a nearby dumpster.
Eric told Dylan that his boss Chris at Baskin Robins thinks he’s the best employee there because he “detonates” aerosol cans in the storage room.
Dylan shared that he has been accepted into Arizona State and might major in computer science but “who cares”.
I learned that Eric’s dad was/is in the Air Force which was the driving motive behind signing up for the Marines.
The flashback ends with the introduction of a guy named Phil who will be selling the guns.
The game also seems to be making the case the childhoods of these boys might be playing a part in their aggressive plans. Perhaps having a military childhood contributed?
Back in the basement I learned that the current time is 7:05am. Dylan arrived and said “Let’s do this” and “I’ve endured this shit for long enough”.
I learned that they plan to “level” their entire school.
Before they leave, the two record a final message. Dylan expresses a parallel with what they are doing with the Doom video game. Eric expressed some remorse for how his parents will be affected by his actions. Dylan expressed that he is fed up and generally angry with everyone.
The watched a video for inspiration. It seemed to be an interview with an army/military veteran who had witnessed some terrible things. He speaks of the strength to push feelings and judgment within so you can kill.
They left the basement and in the car, Eric put on some KMFDM music. The song titles flashed by: they were all violent and aggressive.
The two then arrived in the parking lot of the school. I was instructed to go into the cafeteria and place the bombs. This was harder than I was expecting. Getting past the cameras and hall monitors took quite a bit of trial and error.
I finally arrived at the cafeteria and went through the entire room, avoiding the janitors and camera and could not figure out the right action to take. I once pulled the fire alarm which was the wrong thing to do. Before I start my next session I am going to Google the correct action to take as I am at a loss.
It seems ironic that the video game is making the argument that violent games/music lead to aggression when it itself is a video game. I find the opposite reaction to be more apparent. I empathize with the characters but at the same time feel myself to be saddened and at times am just angry at these kids.
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