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by Stephen Gohan
Many tragedies such as that of the trenchcoat mafia occur far too often in this country. More people die from gunshots in the states than many European countries combined. Why does this happen? The cause is simpler than you might think: console-based role-playing games, and their characteristics. I will identify and attack their characteristics one by one.
1) realism and FMV. This definitely has to go. Why were RPGs originally invented? Imagination. What were the characteristics that made FF1 a classic, and favorite in the FF series among many? Imagination and customization. Bad graphics forced us to fill in details and fine points by ourselves, and the story was whatever we wanted it to be. The plain fact is, realistic graphics and FMV make us subconsciously identify the game with reality itself whether we realize it or not, in much the same way advertising subtly influences us to buy certain products no matter how much we claim to be immune to it. We just arenít, and thatís the sad truth. Images of explosions, gunfire and death that look overly realistic can and will subliminally influence just about anyone to committ murderous acts, if too much exposure results. Ineed, FF7 alone was responsible for much death and malicious impulses in our society. Therefore, it is logical to conclude that all FMVs should be wiped from future RPGs, and that graphics should be no more advanced than 16-bit. This may sound impossible but with enough people I think we can make it happen. I canít conceive of any less than 40% agreeing with me on this after my evidence presented. Realism is evil.
2) Character development. This has become a scourge among RPGs that rapidly spoil RPG players, turning them into sloth-like plot freaks who care nothing about gameplay and only want to be told a story or shown a movie, like babies. They want to sit back, control as little as possible, fight as few battles and traverse as few dungeons as possible, and just let everything be controlled(this is why Xenogears was the worst thing ever to be released for any system in terms of an RPG). What causes this? Story derived from excessive character development. Characters should be left customizable blank slates for the PLAYER TO FILL IN, COLOR AND DEVELOP TO HIS OWN STANDARDS; IMAGINATION SHOULD BE USED. Predefined character stories, especially as realistic as recent games, only add to the subconscious idea of the player that these characters are real and can be seen as role models, and are to be emulated in society. You are not immune to this influence, people. YOU ARE NOT. I study advertising and its effects on the mind, and these predefined character personalities are nothing more than a very subtle form of advertising. What do they advertise? Voilence, mass murder and going against the will of God by destroying his own servants, the angels. Thatís right, how many times has an angel been the final boss of a FF game? At least twice. I assure you, this is a sick joke created by selfish atheists who are making fun of Christianity. But thatís somewhat beside the main point, so I wonít go off on that tangent. If character story and development is left to the imagination alone, the ideas will remain in the playerís head(being forged by the player himself, of course) and wonít be strong enough to influence him to commit murder or anything. That is why it is so essential that RPGs go back to the old ways of the player creating his own character from his own mind, and eliminate prefedined character personalities as soon as possible. I fail to see how that many people can disagree with me here, whether or not theyíre willing to admit it right now. Think it over, people. Just think.
3) Female roles in RPGs. Iíll only touch briefly on this topic. Females shouldnít be given roles that men are supposed to have Ė Tifa is an example of this. Women should be kept as healers or magic users and not be scantily clothed, or it sets a bad example for society. Women shouldnít be beating things up, they should be keeping back and healing the male warriors who protect them. It just doesnít fit right any other way, despite all these modern feminist movements. This may anger some female game players, but hey, just how many girls play games? Not many. So their opinion, while I guess it should still be considered, is far less important. If Iím wrong, letís see them tell me Iím wrong, right here.
Thatís really it. I know a great many of you are secretly with me and ashamed to admit it, so speak out. And for those of you against me, I dare you to even try and rebut every single one of my points. It may seem easy, but in the end I doubt youíll get far.
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