Friday, August 1, 2008

Whoa, close one there...

So... I'm desperate not to fail my self imposed schedule of death, and despite my transgressions so far, I've done pretty well. Admittedly, it's been two weeks, but its totally the minor victories that count.

So here we are, friday night, I've been having 'A good time(tm)' and it's almost like I don't have anything to show for it. It's not like that though, not at all. I mean, since my last post I've made another map for Generals, I've worked on the script for Johnny a little more (but still not enough that I'm comfortable showing other people) and I've tried to draw character studies for the characters in Johnny but to no avail.

I put in the effort, dammit.

But still, that doesn't make for a good post, and the character studies didn't turn out, so here we are, with me scrambling with what I've got, attempting to make it seem like It's all part of the plan....

And with that heady admission, the plan for this post is to analyse one of the only good things I've seen on TV recently, and try to work out why its good, and how I can apply that to my future endevours.

So, behold this thing of L from Deathnote I drew sometime. I think I drew/painted it after seeing the live action movie, and I've gotta admit, it's ruined the anime for me (thank you, Tasha). It's really (REALLY) out of character, but I was pretty happy how close it looked without reference material.

Anyway, the greatest thing about this anime is the back and forth between the main character, Light, and his would be foil, the enigmatic L. Seeing the live action version, with surmises the anime in ~4 hours has ruined the suspense, but for a few weeks there I was willingly tuning in weekly to see just how things were going to turn out.

I mean, originally, I was willing to ignore Deathnote. The fans were rabid, and there's nothing that ruins anything like rabid fanboys, but this series went above and beyond my expectations.

I mean, for a start, It's played out from the perspective of the villain (well, misguided hero) of the series, which is something I consider to be an important consideration for every story, i.e. proper motivation for the antagonist must be examined. It's something thats ignored by most games these days, the villain is simply the villain because he happens to be on the opposite side of the hero, but, as the old science show states, 'Why is it so?'

Secondly, the difference between the hero and the villain is trivial at best. I mean, both have similar goals and beliefs, it's merely the execution that differs. Neither is truly bad (ok, that's a lie... :S) but the point is, they are equal. They are both mere men (albeit extremely intelligent men) that are pretty evenly matched. It's not like Superman, where its an unstoppable force of good versus an incredible mind for evil (which in itself conjures so many issues regarding brains versus brawn... that's right kids, being smart is bad :P) It's a battle of wits, with constant shifting of power and redrawing of the battlefield.

This specifically is what I feel is missing from video games of this generation. It's never just a guy who's better at applying himself who is the bad guy of the game, its an infinitely powerful (and bad ass) demigod, only interested in something as base as destroying the world for reasons that only sound plausible to an angsty 12 year old amped up from listening to linkin park, or whoever angsty band of the moment is.

It's hardly ever (and there are exceptions here) a bad guy who could technically be right. Games, and gamers have progressed through the age were such petty actions are justifiable. I hate to bust out buzzphrases and crap like this, but if games are ever going to be considered a justifiable art form, this has got to chance.

And now, it's time for bed.

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