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Slouching Toward Black Mesa

Zonk posted more than 6 years ago | from the he-is-the-freeman dept.

Games 67

The Escapist this week is themed around stories and storytelling. The article that resonates the most with me is a Tom Rhodes piece called Slouching Toward Black Mesa. It explores the connection between the journey of Gordon Freeman and literary explorations of similar end-of-the-world themes. "Freeman isn't slouching toward Black Mesa, he's converging on the great citadel in the middle of City 17, the Bethlehem of our story. Bethlehem is a holy place in Christian theology, which makes it the perfect location for the beast of Yeats' poem to encroach upon. In City 17, that ideal is flipped on its head, replaced with a center of darkness and powe ... In an even more direct rejection of Yeats, however, the forces in Half-Life 2 are non-supernatural. It continues the series' theme, man as a force in this world; whether for good or ill is his choice. It is this choice, this need to carve out our own destiny and define ourselves based on our own hopes, dreams and fears that makes us human. So what is slouching toward Bethlehem? We are." The issue also features an article entitled The Ending Has Not Yet Been Written, about the never-ending story of Massively Multiplayer Online Games.

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67 comments

I don't buy it (4, Insightful)

stoolpigeon (454276) | more than 6 years ago | (#21260393)

The tie to Yeats is so loose it isn't funny. Yeats was working with themes common to humanity and so of course there will be some overlap - but the entire thing seems to argue against itself at least half the time. And the end? Didn't even make sense. So I'll give it points for bringing attention to great poetry - but that's about it.

Re:I don't buy it (4, Insightful)

reverseengineer (580922) | more than 6 years ago | (#21261483)

Yeah, the essay tries way too hard to shoehorn Gordon Freeman into the notion of the "rough beast" of "The Second Coming." Now, one nice thing about a silent protagonist in a video game is that all manner of feelings and motivation can be projected onto Freeman by the player. Perhaps Freeman is a bit bemused and cynical about the adoration heaped on him by the human resistance, knowing himself to be the puppet of larger forces. Comparing Freeman to the sphinx-like juggernaut of "The Second Coming" is stretching it a bit though.

If anything, the point of this essay would have been made far more effectively by comparing Freeman to a more traditional heroic/messianic figure. The apocalyse Yeats describes is not about the final triumph of good over evil, but the end and beginning of historical eras, punctuated by a moment of destruction and revelation. The "rough beast" isn't interested in saving anyone, as evidenced by its "gaze blank and pitiless as the sun." It is a god of destruction, one that could be described as great and terrible, but not evil as Yeats saw it, since the annihiliation would precipitate rebirth. If there is a character in the Half-Life series that resembles this, it might be the G-Man, who is clearly willing to spread chaos and destruction to achieve his (or his employers') mysterious goals.

Gordon Freeman, on the other hand, hews more closely to the epic hero type in literature- a comparison to Beowulf, whose story is more about saving innocent people from monsters, would have been fitting. YIt unfortunately seems though that the author of this essay got fixated somehow on comparing Half-Life 2 to this Yeats poem, and instead of abandoning the notion, decided to keep trying to make it work.

Re:I don't buy it (1)

toiletsalmon (309546) | more than 6 years ago | (#21328081)

Starting at about the second paragraph, I started "hearing" your post as if it were being spoken by the G-man. Funny but creepy!

Re:I don't buy it (1)

fractoid (1076465) | more than 6 years ago | (#21264823)

The tie to Yeats is so loose it isn't funny.
You know you've been reading Slashdot too long when... you read a quote like that and think "lose, idiot, it's... oh bother."

Stories in MMOs? (2, Funny)

My name is Bucket (1020933) | more than 6 years ago | (#21260453)

The guy who writes the story in an MMO is kind of like the guy who decides what color plastic to use for motherboards. Somewhat compulsory, but ultimately inconsequential.

slouching towards old ike (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21260461)

When I think of dirty old men, I think of Ike Thomas and when I think about Ike I get a hard-on that won't quit.

Sixty years ago, I worked in what was once my grandfather's greenhouses. Gramps had died a year earlier and Grandma, now in her seventies had been forced to sell to the competition. I got a job with the new owners and mostly worked the range by myself. That summer, they hired a man to help me get the benches ready for the fall planting.

Ike always looked like he was three days from a shave and his whiskers were dirty white, shaded by the brim of his battered felt fedora.

He did not chew tobacco but the corners of his mouth turned down in a way that, at any moment, I expected a trickle of thin, brown juice to creep down his chin. His bushy, brown eyebrows shaded pale, gray eyes.

The old-timer extended his hand, lifted his leg like a dog about to mark a bush and let go the loudest fart I ever heard. The old fellow then winked at me, "Ike Thomas is the name and playing pecker's my game."

I thought he said, "Checkers." I was nineteen, green as grass. I said, "I was never much good at that game."

"Now me," said Ike, "I just love jumping men ..."

"I'll bet you do."

"... and grabbing on to their peckers," said Ike.

"I thought we were talking about ..."

"You like jumping old men's peckers?"

I shook my head.

"I reckon we'll have to remedy that." Ike lifted his right leg and let go another tremendous fart. "He said, "We best be getting to work."

That summer of 1941 was a more innocent time. I learned most of the sex I knew from those little eight pager cartoon booklets of comic-page characters going at it. Young men read them in the privacy of an outside john, played with themselves, by themselves and didn't brag about it. Sometimes, we got off with a trusted friend and helped each other out.

Under the greenhouse glass, the temperature some times climbed over the hundred degree mark. I had worked stripped to the waist since April and was as brown as a berry. On only his second day on the job and in the middle of August, Ike wore old fashioned overalls. Those and socks in his high-top work shoes was every stitch he wore. When he bent forward, the bib front billowed out and I could see the white curly hairs on his chest and belly.

"Me? I just love to eat pussy!" Ike licked his lips from corner to corner then sticking his tongue out far enough that the tip could touch the end of his nose. He said, A man's not a man till he knows first hand, the flavor of a lady's pussy."

"People do that?"

He winked. "Of course the taste of a hard cock ain't to be sneezed at neither. Now you answer me, yes or no. Does a man's cock taste salty or not?"

"I never ..."

"Well, old Ike's willing to let you find out."

"No way."

"Just teasing," said Ike. "But don't give me no sass or I'll show you my ass." He winked. "Might show it to you anyway, if you was to ask."

"Why would I do that?"

"Curiosity, maybe. I'm guessing you never had a good piece of man ass."

"I'm no queer."

"Now don't be getting judgmental. Enjoying what's at hand ain't being queer. It's taking pleasure where you find it with anybody willing." Ike slipped a hand into the side slit of his overalls and I could tell he was fondling and straightening out his cock. "Now I admit I got me a hole that satisfied a few guys."

I swallowed, hard.

Ike winked. "Care to be asshole buddies?"

---

We worked steadily until noon. Ike drew a worn pocket watch from the bib pocket of his loose overalls and croaked, "Bean time. But first its time to reel out our limber hoses and make with the golden arches before lunch."

I followed Ike to the end of the greenhouse where he stopped at the outside wall of the potting shed. He opened his fly, fished inside, and finger-hooked a soft white penis with a pouting foreskin puckered half an inch past the hidden head.

"Yes sir," breathed Ike, "this old peter needs some draining." He exhaled a sigh as a strong, yellow stream splattered against the boards and ran down to soak into the earthen floor.

He caught me looking down at him. He winked. "Like what you're viewing, Boy?"

I looked away.

"You taking a serious interest in old Ike's pecker?"

I shook my head.

"Well you just haul out yourn and let old Ike return the compliment."

Feeling trapped and really having to go, I fumbled at my fly, turned away slightly, withdrew my penis and strained to start.

"Take your time boy. Let it all hang out. Old Ike's the first to admit that he likes looking at another man's pecker." He flicked away the last drop of urine and shook his limp penis vigorously.

I tried not to look interested.

"Yes sir, this old peepee feels so good out, I just might leave it out." He turned to give me a better view.

"What if somebody walks in?"

Ike shrugged. He looked at my strong yellow stream beating against the boards and moved a step closer. "You got a nice one,boy."

I glanced over at him. His cock was definitely larger and beginning to stick straight out. I nodded toward his crotch. "Don't you think you should put that away?"

"I got me strictly a parlor prick," said Ike. "Barely measures six inches." He grinned. "Of course it's big enough around to make a mouthful." He ran a thumb and forefinger along its length and drawing his foreskin back enough to expose the tip of the pink head. "Yersiree." He grinned, revealing nicotine stained teeth. "It sure feels good, letting the old boy breathe."

I knew I should button up and move away. I watched his fingers moving up and down the thickening column.

"You like checking out this old man's cock?"

I nodded. In spite of myself, my cock began to swell.

"Maybe we should have ourselves a little pecker pulling party." Ike slid his fingers back and forth on his expanding shaft and winked. "I may be old but I'm not against doing some little pud pulling with a friend."

I shook my head.

"Maybe I'll give my balls some air. Would you like a viewing of old Ike's hairy balls?"

I swallowed hard and moistened my dry lips.

He opened another button on his fly and pulled out his scrotum. "Good God, It feels good to set 'em free. Now let's see yours."

"Why?"

"Just to show you're neighborly," said Ike.

"I don't think so." I buttoned up and moved into the potting shed.

Ike followed, his cock and balls protruding from the front of his overalls. "Overlook my informality." Ike grinned. "As you can see I ain't bashful."

I nodded and took my sandwich from the brown paper bag.

"Yessir," said Ike. "I just might have to have myself an old fashioned peter pulling all by my lonesome. He unhooked a shoulder strap and let his overalls drop around his ankles.

I took a bite of my sandwich but my eyes remained on Ike.

"Yessiree," said Ike, "I got a good one if I do say so myself. Gets nearly as hard as when I was eighteen. You know why?"

I shook my head.

"Cause I keep exercising him. When I was younger I was pulling on it three time a day. Still like to do him every day I can."

"Some say you'll go blind if you do that too much."

"Bull-loney!" Don't you believe that shit. I been pulling my pud for close to fifty years and I didn't start till I was fifteen."

I laughed.

"You laughing at my little peter, boy?"

"Your hat." I pointed to the soiled, brown fedora cocked on his head. That and his overalls draped about his ankles were his only items of apparel. In between was a chest full of gray curly hair, two hairy legs. Smack between them stood an erect, pale white cock with a tip of foreskin still hiding the head.

"I am one hairy S.O.B.," said Ike.

"I laughed at you wearing nothing but a hat."

"Covers up my bald spot," said Ike. "I got more hair on my ass than I got on my head. Want to see?"

"Your head?"

"No, Boy, my hairy ass and around my tight, brown asshole." He turned, reached back with both hands and parted his ass cheeks to reveal the small, puckered opening. "There it is, Boy, the entrance lots of good feelings. Tell me, Boy, how would you like to put it up old Ike's ass?"

"I don't think so."

"That'd be the best damned piece you ever got."

"We shouldn't be talking like this."

"C'mon now, confess, don't this make your cock perk up a little bit?"

"I reckon," I confessed.

"You ever seen an old man's hard cock before," asked Ike.

"My grandpa's when I was twelve or thirteen."

"How'd that come about?"

He was out in the barn and didn't know I was around. He dropped his pants. It was real big he did things to it. He saw me and he turned around real fast but I saw it."

"What did your grandpa do?"

"He said I shouldn't be watching him doing that. He said something like grandma wouldn't give him some,' that morning and that I should get out of there and leave a poor man in peace to do what he had to do."

"Did you want to join him."

"I might have if he'd asked. He didn't."

"I like showing off my cock," said Ike. "A hard-on is something I always been proud of. A hard-on proves a man's a man. Makes me feel like a man that can do things." He looked up at me and winked. "You getting a hard-on from all this talk, son?"

I nodded and looked away.

"Then maybe you should pull it out and show old Ike what you got."

"We shouldn't."

"Hey. A man's not a man till he jacked off with a buddy."

I wanted to but I was as nervous as hell.

Ike grinned and fingered his pecker. "C'mon, Boy, between friends, a little cock showing is perfectly fine. Lets see what you got in the cock and balls department."

In spite of my reluctance, I felt the stirring in my crotch. I had curiosity that needed satisfying. It had been a long, long time since I had walked in on my grandfather.

"C'mon let's see it all."

I shook my head.

"You can join the party anytime, said Ike. "Just drop your pants and pump away."

I had the urge. There was a tingling in my crotch. My cock was definitely willing and I had a terrible need to adjust myself down there. But my timidity and the strangeness of it all held me back.

Hope you don't mind if I play out this hand." Ike grinned. "It feels like I got a winner."

I stared at his gnarled hand sliding up and down that pale, white column and I could not look away. I wet my lips and shook my head.

Old Ike's about to spout a geyser." Ike breathed harder as he winked. "Now if I just had a long finger up my ass. You interested, boy?"

I shook my head.

The first, translucent, white glob crested the top of his cock and and arced to the dirt floor. Ike held his cock at the base with thumb and forefinger and tightened noticeably with each throb of ejaculation until he was finished.

I could not believe any man could do what he had done in front of another human being.

Ike sighed with pleasure and licked his fingers. "A man ain't a man till he's tasted his own juices."

He squatted, turned on the faucet and picked up the connected hose. He directed the water between his legs and on to his still dripping prick and milked the few remaining drops of white, sticky stuff into the puddle forming at his feet. "Cool water sure feels good on a cock that just shot its wad," said Ike.

---

"Cock-tale telling time," said Old Ike. It was the next day and he rubbed the front of his dirty,worn overalls where his bulge made the fly expand as his fingers smoothed the denim around the outline of his expanding cock.

I wasn't sure what he had in mind but I knew it wasn't something my straight-laced Grandma would approve of.

"Don't you like taking your cock out and jacking it?" Ike licked his lips.

I shook my head in denial.

"Sure you do. A young man in his prime has got to be pulling his pud."

I stared at his calloused hand moving over the growing bulge at his crotch.

"Like I said," continued Ike, "I got me barely six inches when he's standing up." He winked at me. "How much you got, son?"

"Almost seven inches ..." I stuttered. "Last time I measured."

"And I'm betting it feels real good with your fist wrapped around it."

"I don't do ..."

"Everybody does it." He scratched his balls and said, "I'll show you mine if you show me yours." Then, looking me in the eye, he lifted his leg like a dog at a tree and let out a long, noisy fart.

Denying that I jacked off, I said, "I saw yours yesterday."

"A man has got to take out his pecker every once in a while." He winked and his fingers played with a button on his fly. Care to join me today?"

"I don't think so."

"What's the matter, boy? You ashamed of what's hanging 'tween your skinny legs?"

"It's not for showing off."

"That would be so with a crowd of strangers but with a friend, in a friendly showdown, where's the harm?"

"It shouldn't be shown to other people. My Grandma said that a long time ago when I went to the bathroom against a tree when I was seven."

"There's nothing like a joint pulling among friends to seal a friendship," said Ike.

I don't think so." I felt very much, ill at ease.

"Then what the fuck is it for," demanded the old man. "A good man shares his cock with his friends. How old are you boy?"

"Fifteen almost sixteen."

You ever fucked a woman?"

"No."

"Ever fucked a man?"

"Of course not."

"Son, you ain't never lived till you've fired your load up a man's tight ass."

"I didn't know men did that to each other."

"Men shove it up men's asses men all the time. They just don't talk about it like they do pussy."

"You've done that?"

"I admit this old pecker's been up a few manholes. More than a few hard cocks have shagged this old ass over the years." He shook his head, wistfully, "I still have a hankering for a hard one up the old dirt chute."

"I think that would hurt."

"First time, it usually does," agreed Ike. He took a bite from his sandwich.

I looked at my watch. Ten minutes of our lunch hour had already passed.

"We got time for a quickie," said Ike. "There's no one around to say, stop, if were enjoying ourselves."

He unhooked the slide off the button of one shoulder-strap, pushed the bib of his overalls down to let them fall to his feet.

"Showtime," said Ike. Between his legs, white and hairy, his semi-hard cock emerged from a tangled mass of brown and gray pubic hair. The foreskin, still puckered beyond the head of the cock, extended downward forty-five degrees from the horizontal but was definitely on the rise.

I could only stare at the man. Until the day before, I had never seen an older man with an erection besides my grandpa.

Ike moved his fingers along the stalk of his manhood until the head partially emerged, purplish and broad. He removed his hand for a moment and it bobbled obscenely in the subdued light of the potting shed. Ike leaned back against a bin of clay pots like a model on display. "Like I said, boy, it gets the job done."

I found it difficult not to watch. "You shouldn't ..."

"C'mon, boy. Show Ike your pecker. I'm betting it's nice and hard."

I grasped my belt and tugged on the open end. I slipped the waistband button and two more before pushing down my blue jeans and shorts down in one move. My cock bounced and slapped my belly as I straightened."

"That's a beaut." Ike stroked his pale, white cock with the purplish-pink head shining. "I'm betting it'll grow some more if you stroke it."

"We really shouldn't ..."

"Now don't tell me you never stroked your hard peter with a buddy."

"I've done that," I finally admitted,. "But he was the same age as me and it was a long time ago." I though back to the last time Chuck and me jerked each other off in the loft of our old barn. Chuck wanted more as a going away present and we had sucked each other's dicks a little bit.

"Jackin's always better when you do it with somebody," said Ike. "Then you can lend each other a helping hand."

"I don't know about that," I said.

Ike's hand continued moving on his old cock as he leaned over to inspect mine. "God Damn! Boy. That cock looks good enough to eat." Ike licked his lips. "You ever had that baby sucked?"

I shook my head as I watched the old man stroke his hard, pale cock.

"Well boy, I'd say you're packing a real mouthful for some lucky gal or guy." He grinned. "Well c'mon. Let's see you get down to some serious jacking. Old Ike's way ahead of you."

I wrapped my fist around my stiff cock and moved the foreskin up and over the head on the up stroke. On the down stroke the expanded corona of the angry, purple head stared obscenely at the naked old man.

Ike toyed with his modest six inches. "What do you think of this old man's cock?" His fist rode down to his balls and a cockhead smaller than the barrel stared back at mine.

"I guess I'm thinking this is like doing it with my grandpa."

"You ever wish you could a done this with your grandpa?"

"I thought about it a lot."

"Ever see him with a hard-on."

"I told you about that!"

"Ever think about him doing your grandma?"

"I can't imagine her ever doing anything with a man."

"Take my word for it, sonny, we know she did it or you wouldn't be here." Begrudgingly I nodded in agreement.

"Everybody fucks," said old Ike. "They fuck or they jack off."

"If you say so."

"Say sonny, your cocks getting real juicy with slickum. Want old Ike tolick some of it away?"

"You wouldn't."

Ike licked his lips as he kept his hand pistoning up and down his hard cock. "You might be surprised what old Ike might do if he was in the mood for a taste of what comes out of a hard cock."

And that is what he proceeded to do. He sucked me dry.

Then he erupted in half-a-dozen spurts shooting out and onto the dirt floor of the potting shed. He gave his cock a flip and shucked t back into his overalls. He unwrapped a sandwich from its wax paper and proceed to eat without washing his hands. He took a bite and chewed. "Nothing like it boy, a good jacking clears the cobwebs from your crotch and gives a man an appetite."

---

The following day, We skipped the preliminaries. We dropped our pants. Ike got down on his knees and sucked me until I was hard and good and wet before he stood and turned.

"C'mon boy, Shove that pretty cock up old Ike's tight, brown hole and massage old Ike's prostate.

Ike bent forward and gripped the edge of the potting bench. The lean, white cheeked buttocks parted slightly and exposed the dark brown, crinkly, puckered star of his asshole. "Now you go slow and ease it along until you've got it all the way in," he cautioned. "This old ass craves your young cock but it don't want too much too soon. You've got to let this old hole stretch to accommodate you."

"Are you sure you want to do this?"

"Easy boy, easy," he cautioned. "You feel a lot bigger than you look. Put a little more spit in your cock."

"It's awfully tight. I don't know if it's going to go or not."

"It'll go," said Ike. "There's been bigger boys than you up the old shit chute."

I slipped in the the last few inches.. "It's all in."

"I can tell," said Ike. "Your cock hairs are tickling my ass."

"Are you ready," I asked.

"How are you liking old Ike's hairy asshole so far?"

"It's real tight."

"Tighter than your fist?"

"Might be."

"Ready to throw a fuck into a man that reminds you of your grandpa."

"I reckon."

"I want you should do old Ike one more favor."

"What?"

While you're pumpin' my ass, would you reach around and play with my dick like you would your own? Would you do that for an old man?"

I reached around and took hold of his hard cock sticking out straight in front of him. I pilled the skin back and then pulled it up and over the expanded glans. I felt my own cock expand inside him as I manipulated his staff in my fingers. I imagined that my cock extended through him and I was playing with what came out the other side of him.

"C'mon, boy, ram that big cock up the old shitter and make me know it. God Damn! tickle that old prostate and make old Ike come!"

I came. And I came. Ike's tightened up on my cock and I throbbed Roman Candle bursts into that brown hole as I pressed into him. His hairy, scrawny ass flattened against my crotch and we were joined as tightly as two humans can be.

"A man's not a man till he's come in another man." said old Ike. "You made it, boy. But still, a man's not a man till he's had a hard cock poked up his ass at least once."

Every time I think of that scene, I get another hard-on. Then I remember the next day when old Ike returned the favor.

I never have managed to come that hard again. If only Ike were here.

Memo Zonk (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21260469)

Anything that mentions Half Life/Half Life 2 != automatically newsworthy.

Memo AC (1)

stoolpigeon (454276) | more than 6 years ago | (#21260501)

Anything that mentions Half Life/Half Life 2 != automatically posted by Zonk.

Ugh (5, Insightful)

Fallingcow (213461) | more than 6 years ago | (#21260505)

This sounds like the kind of crap I might come up with were I to use my knowledge of lit-crit terminology and thinking to make up deliberately-stupid but syntactically- and factually-correct bunch of bullshit for my own amusement.

Want me to write something like this holding up K-Fed's song "PopoZão" as an intelligent bit of verse, in the vein of, say, Lindsay's "Congo"? I can. It won't be true, but it'll sound as good as this crap.

(don't get me wrong--I think that the Half-Life series has given us a damned-good balance of action and story, and is probably the best "pure" FPS series in existence. This article, however, is stupid.)

Bingo! (1)

stoolpigeon (454276) | more than 6 years ago | (#21260521)

You sir, win a cupie doll.

Re:Ugh (1)

WhatAmIDoingHere (742870) | more than 6 years ago | (#21260539)

"Want me to write something like this holding up K-Fed's song "PopoZão" as an intelligent bit of verse, in the vein of, say, Lindsay's "Congo"? I can. It won't be true, but it'll sound as good as this crap."

I'd actually like to see that.

Popozao: An Analysis (5, Funny)

Fallingcow (213461) | more than 6 years ago | (#21262165)

Artist Keven Federline's hit song "Popozao" is a refreshing change from the literarily-ignorant tunes of his contemporaries, which thoroughly fail to speak to a modern world while retaining ties to the important sense of rich history that exists in the medium of verse--lyrical or otherwise. Federline's use of sound is plainly meant to be evocative of those of Vachel Lindsay's "The Congo", and may be equally offensive if one fails to grasp the significance beyond the words themselves. The message of this tour-de-force is many-layered, and worthy of closer analysis.

It quickly becomes plain to the listener that the setting of the scene is a dance floor, painting for us a picture full of moving bodies and light that well-fits this song's rhythmic and sometimes chaotic flow. We have a narrator who appears, on the surface, to be calling to a fellow dancer of the opposite sex. Following a Lindsayesque bit of primal noise, we are greeted with the line, "Toy all your thing on me, baby." Now, through this request for openness ("all your thing") and the use of the second person possessive, it is clear that the narrator desires a dialog with the listener, inviting us to explore and speak to the verses that follow, and to release our inhibitions. The deep, drum-like rhythm of this line, repeated four times for emphasis, ties it to the preceding noises, letting us know that the narrator speaks to us from--or on behalf of--that primal chaos.

A bit of Portuguese follows, chanted with a tone that is both menacing and enticing, reminding the listener in a few well-chosen syllables of the emotional rollercoaster that is Lindsay's "The Congo". The next two verses are particularly interesting, and inform us that a literal, superficial reading of these verses is, indeed, incorrect. The first gives us the meaning of some of the previous Portuguese speech, which we are told means "bring your ass". We'll come back to that in a moment. Later in the same verse, we are told that the narrator wants to see our "kitty and a little bit of titty". All-in-all, this is an overtly and even offensively sexual bit of lyric.

The next verse, however, reveals that this was merely a light-hearted play, as was foreshadowed with the laughter accompanying the songs introductory sounds. Federline deliberately breaks one's natural association of "kitty" with another synonym for "cat" which may also mean "vagina" with the lines "Girl, don't you worry about all the dough/because a cat is coming straight out of the know". With our earlier images shattered and replaced by the narrator himself, it is revealed that this pair of verses is really a statement on how we cheapen not only others, but ourselves by degrading sexuality in this way. This and other evidence in Federline's ouvre may indicate that he has a dislike for modern, sexually vulgar poetry, in the vein of Charles Bukowski. His overt references to Lindsay, who wrote in the very early 19th century, may even give us a glimpse into Federline's ideals. Further, the self-association of this deep-voiced male narrator with the feminine may have deeper implications.

(OK, I'll stop there. I was thinking about tying him in to the Beats and even Andy Kaufman [via their both having had amateur experiences with "professional" wrestling], but I think I've spent enough time on this already. I rest my case.)

Re:Popozao: An Analysis (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21264663)

Hey, could you do an analysis of Timberlake's "Dick in a Box"? It's got a very compelling business plan that even has a step 2!

1: Cut a hole in a box
2: Put your junk in that box
3: Make her open the box

Re:Popozao: An Analysis (1)

ROBOKATZ (211768) | more than 6 years ago | (#21267071)

This reminds me of the Huey Lewis and the News, Genesis, and Whitney Houston chapters in American Psycho. I can just picture Christian Bale reciting this as he's preparing to kill someone.

"I think their undisputed masterpiece is "Hip to be Square", a song so catchy, most people probably don't listen to the lyrics. But they should, because it's not just about the pleasures of conformity, and the importance of trends, it's also a personal statement about the band itself."

Re:Ugh (1)

stratjakt (596332) | more than 6 years ago | (#21260995)

I once compared Hemingway's For Whom the Bell Tolls to The Fellowship of the Ring for a lit class and got an A+, it was all pure horseshit, I knew it then and know it now.

You can compare anything to anything in an english lit class, and get an A+ so long as it sounds pompous enough when read aloud.

Re:Ugh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21261949)

True. I once did a term paper on the obscure German novel, Major Tom, by the obscure German author Peter Schilling.

Got an A+.

Is this for real? (3, Informative)

KrazeeEyezKilla (955150) | more than 6 years ago | (#21260553)

This is the most overwrought load of crap I have ever read.

Pretentious (2, Insightful)

RogueyWon (735973) | more than 6 years ago | (#21260559)

Ugh, this kind of pretentious clap-trap illustrates perfectly what I found objectionable about Half-Life 2.

Now, don't get me wrong, I still think the original Half-Life was one of the greatest fpses ever made. Sure, it's not aged all that well and feels a little primative now, but compared to the competition at the time (basically Unreal and Quake 2), it was superb. It had a plot that made sense, an environment that actually felt plausible and AI which, while relying heavily on scripting, *felt* convincing and realistic to the player.

Half-Life 2, however, left me utterly cold. It reminded me of nothing more than the pretentious student-videos I'd had to sit through at University, put together by people who thought that "OMG SILENT MOVIE" or "OMG BLACK AND WHITE" were original, ground breaking concepts, never thought of before.

The biggest problem I had with HL2's storytelling was that it took the technical limitations imposed by the general state of the genre at the time of HL1 and made them into supposed virtues. The biggest obstacle to immersion for me was the "mute protagonist". I'm sorry, but this is absolute bollocks. We're supposed to be playing *Doctor* Freeman here. I've spent my share of time in academic circles and I have never known a PhD who could stay silent for more than 10 seconds at a time. However, we are supposed to believe that this mute, inexpressive guy whose visage is largely obscured by a bulky hazmat suit is some kind of inspirational resistance leader? Pull the other one. He's also got this strange, stuck-firmly-in-the-freaky-valley woman who obsesses over him and who seems to be on the verge of orgasm every time he stares blankly at her or hits a bit of the scenery with a crowbar. Immersion by this point is so badly blown as to be irretrievable.

People talk about *proper* cut-scenes destroying immersion, but frankly, compared to the nasty, cut-price story-telling in HL2, the classic "Mark Hamill at his worst" cutscenes of the Wing Commander 3 era are masterpieces. I fail to see what is so great about being able to run around during vital plot exposition, to the point that half the time you don't even realise it's happening until you've missed half of it.

Finally... this idea that the back-plot can be filled in through newspaper cuttings and the like? Fine... that can work. If done properly. Unfortunately, HL2 didn't have anything like enough of it and finding a good chunk of it involved spending way too much time staring at every inch of wall in the game in the hope of finding something relevant. I found HL2's contemporary, Doom 3, did this whole business much better, with the audio-logs system.

Re:Pretentious (1)

stoolpigeon (454276) | more than 6 years ago | (#21260593)

Wing Commander 3 kicked ass. I bought a new PC for that game.

Re:Pretentious (1)

heinousjay (683506) | more than 6 years ago | (#21260755)

I get the feeling, from reading your posts, that you've forgotten that games are meant to be played for fun. Of course, it's possible you over-intellectualize everything in your life as well.

Re:Pretentious (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21260885)

You what? Nintendo fanboy, I'm guessing...

Re:Pretentious (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21261629)

No, I'm not a fanboy in any way. I'm far too rational for that crap. I find it interesting that you associate the idea that games are for fun with the idea of being a Nintendo fanboy, however, and I'm curious if you see it as a negative.

Re:Pretentious (1)

RogueyWon (735973) | more than 6 years ago | (#21261041)

Hold on... you're accusing *me* of over-intellectualizing? Have you even Read the Fucking Article?

Re:Pretentious (1)

heinousjay (683506) | more than 6 years ago | (#21261313)

No, it looked pretty bad. But you didn't talk about the article - you wrote six paragraphs about what you thought about Half-Life 2. Plus I read your other posts.

Re:Pretentious (1)

RogueyWon (735973) | more than 6 years ago | (#21264067)

Right... so the AC who beat me to replying to you was right then. Just checking :)

Re:Pretentious (1)

heinousjay (683506) | more than 6 years ago | (#21268505)

Ah, so you over-intellectualize, then attempt to deflect as a defense. Interesting. Ineffective, but that's not really the issue I suppose.

Have you even considered... (2, Funny)

Kaenneth (82978) | more than 6 years ago | (#21260845)

Have you even considered that Gordon may be mute? Perhaps he has a disability preventing him from speaking, and he can't use sign language since his hands generally are carrying tools. In any case, The odds of a Headcrab knowing ASL is pretty darn slim.

Black Mesa is an Equal Opportunity Employer after all, you insensitive jerk.

Re:Have you even considered... (1)

Synonymous Bosch (957964) | more than 6 years ago | (#21261887)

you know how absent minded those black mesa scientists were... they forgot to put a mic/speaker on the environment suit.

Re:Have you even considered... (1)

yuriks (1089091) | more than 6 years ago | (#21261915)

Nitpicking: The suit has a speaker, Alyx uses it to talk to you at the final parts of HL2 and other places.

Re:Have you even considered... (1)

flitty (981864) | more than 6 years ago | (#21269091)

Ah, which was the problem, the Mic is on the Outside of the suit, and the speaker is on the inside of the suit. Gordon must listen to all the pretentious blathering about the story, but has no ability to talk back to the morons who are talking down to Mr. MIT graduate.

"Yes, it is a good think i have this suit on. Yes, I think that I have to place wooden spools in radioactive waste is a pretty annoying way to spend 15 minutes, thanks for reminding me. When that zombie pops out of the radioactive waste, I'll ask him for a hand, since you don't care to help. I hate you, and I wish you could hear me say so."

Re:Pretentious (1)

ucblockhead (63650) | more than 6 years ago | (#21261369)

Doom 3? Was it the same Doom 3 where every third room involved the lights going out and a panel opening up behind you? The Doom 3 where you couldn't hold a flashlight and a gun at the same time? Let me know, because if so I need to exchange the copy I got because my copy had an utterly derivative story that was barely worth bothering with.

Re:Pretentious (5, Insightful)

The MAZZTer (911996) | more than 6 years ago | (#21261375)

Valve could have made Gordon speak in 1997 with the original Half-Life if they had wanted to. I like to think they chose to keep Gordon's character largely vague to improve immersion... you ARE Gordon Freeman. If they had better defined Gordon's character and given him a voice, he's just another character who you happen to control.

I'm not sure how you came to that conclusion about Alyx. The only weird parts I see about it are that Gordon used to work with Eli, and Eli has aged 10 years but Gordon hasn't since GMan did some trickery to seemingly move him 10 years into the future without aging. Maybe she has a crush on him, I dunno, but it's not quite like you're implying. Have you tried HL2 Episodes 1 and 2? One of the things Valve said they didn't like about HL2 was that you didn't get to fight alongside an NPC partner much. In Episodes 1 and 2 you do this a lot (and mostly with Alyx) so they had the opportunity to flesh out her character more. You should at least give the episodes a try. I enjoyed them. And if you don't like the idea of spending so much time with Alyx, it's not for the whole of each episode, and they are short games.

The mechanic where the player is always in control and there are never out-of-body cutscenes or cutscenes which remove player control (unless it's plausible, IE the teleporter cutscene in HL2) was an important one to Valve. If you would rather have a cutscene where the game takes control away, you are welcome to remove your hands from your keyboard and mouse... but really, some exposition is needed in the world of Half-Life.

There aren't many out of the way plot details hidden in HL2, and I'm again surprised that you think they would be essential. All of the essential plot details are conveyed via cutscene / expository dialog. When I was playing through HL2 for the first time I don't recall ever feeling confused or not knowing why I was supposed to do something. Any out of the way bits (such as newspaper clippings) are merely extras designed to reward players who take the time to look for such things.

I suppose recording of plot dialog might have been helpful (Valve, there's still time to put a new feature in the HEV Suit!) but the plot isn't THAT complex. You have three factions... resistance, combine, and xen aliens. They all try to kill each other. You have to make sure the resistance comes out on top. See that tall spire? That's where you're going eventually. Other than this, HL2 is largely linear. You just push forward until you find your objective.

I actually am surprised with all your nitpicking at Half-Life 2 you don't seem to point out one of the more unbelievable aspects in both it and the prequel... how the hell is a PhD guy better with such a wide array of weapons than the US Army? Here is a case where there's a tradeoff of plausibility for fun. Half-Life would have been a short game if you couldn't use weapons well.

Re:Pretentious (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21261903)

Mod parent up. This is more-or-less exactly what I was about to write in my own response, before I decided to skim through the existing replies first. Gordon was silent because the game was supposed to be as immersing as possible for the player. If "my character" constantly spoke to people in a voice that wasn't mine, and said things that I wouldn't say in that situation, then I'm given a painful reminder that I'm not actually there. Suddenly I feel more like I'm watching some other guy face the various threats, and the whole experience isn't as exciting as a result.

To the grandparent: Perhaps you don't quite understand the difference between being immersed in a game, and watching/reading a decent story from an external perspective. If you want more of the latter, then another medium (such as those mentioned above) might be right up your alley.

Re:Pretentious (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21267833)

Except that when my character says nothing at all to the NPCs, it _is_ akin to saying something I wouldn't say, because in these situations I would not be keeping silent. I really do not get how the silence of the main character in HL1 makes it more immersive than Duke Nukem 3d, where you say and do things that he would say. Getting into the role of Duke helps the player experience being the character, rather than just being in the situation like silent, emotionless Freeman is.

Re:Pretentious (1)

mrchaotica (681592) | more than 6 years ago | (#21263751)

The only weird parts I see about it are that Gordon used to work with Eli, and Eli has aged 10 years but Gordon hasn't since GMan did some trickery to seemingly move him 10 years into the future without aging.

It's not at all obvious that Gordon was similar in age to Eli; in fact, I think it's more likely that Gordon was one of Eli's (and Dr. Kleiner's) assistants. (This explains why Gordon was the one doing the "dirty work" in the test chamber in the first place...) Gordon could, in fact, be only slightly older than Alyx now.

Any out of the way bits (such as newspaper clippings) are merely extras designed to reward players who take the time to look for such things.

Personally, I would have enjoyed a lot more backstory, and I don't think I'm alone in feeling that way.

You have three factions... resistance, combine, and xen aliens.

And what about Race X? (Speaking of lack of backstory...)

Re:Pretentious (1)

Blakey Rat (99501) | more than 6 years ago | (#21261437)

I found HL2's contemporary, Doom 3, did this whole business much better, with the audio-logs system.

1) The audio-logs system is ripped-off from System Shock 2. (You can also see it at work in Bioshock.)

2) Doom 3 sucked, man. Seriously, hard-core sucked ass. PSA: If you're going to cite a game that does storytelling better than Half-Life using a game mechanic from System Shock 2, cite System Shock 2.

Re:Pretentious (5, Insightful)

ZorbaTHut (126196) | more than 6 years ago | (#21261883)

I always figured Gordon Freeman a bit differently.

He doesn't talk, and he never does anything particularly scientific. He's mute out of confusion. He's been dropped into this world, completely out of nowhere, and while there are people claiming to know him, people claiming to have been friends with him for decades, he, like us, has absolutely no memory of any of it.

He doesn't know who he is. He doesn't know what he's doing here. All he knows is that he's trying to survive, and things try to kill him, and . . . well, he could just walk away, right? But he never had a chance to get out during the events of Half-Life 1, and in some ways this entire mess is his fault, and, well, these people are relying on him.

So he soldiers on. But he still doesn't know any of the people, events, or places that this is happening in. So if he opens his mouth one time, people might realize he's not actually the person they think he is. So he keeps his mouth shut, and somehow things seem to work out, everyone always knows where he has to go next, and nobody suspects a thing.

Except, of course, for the G-Man, who knows everything that's happened, and knows where Gordon came from, and knows what Gordon is sent to do.

Is that all really subtle enough that people are missing it? It seems pretty clear from the beginning and ending of most of the games that, whatever Gordon is, he's certainly not just some random dude with a PhD. The sheer existence of the G-Man proves that. I'm honestly rather impressed that Valve's kept it up this long without spilling the beans. I honestly think that Gordon is just as in-the-dark about the world of Half-Life as we are.

Re:Pretentious (2, Insightful)

mrchaotica (681592) | more than 6 years ago | (#21263783)

I'm honestly rather impressed that Valve's kept it up this long without spilling the beans.

Everything you said made perfect sense except for that line. Not only do we and Gordon not know who Gordon is, but Valve doesn't either! This makes it rather easy for them not to "spill the beans" -- there aren't any to spill in the first place!

Re:Pretentious (1)

fbjon (692006) | more than 6 years ago | (#21272837)

Makes no difference, the concept works anyway. Valve can figure those things out later on, if it's ever needed.

Re:Pretentious (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21262041)

"The biggest obstacle to immersion for me was the "mute protagonist". "

You mean you don't fill in Gordon's lines yourself? I thought everybody did that. ...What?

"I fail to see what is so great about being able to run around during vital plot exposition, to the point that half the time you don't even realise it's happening until you've missed half of it."

Now, now, it's not HL2's fault you have ADHD.

Re:Pretentious (2, Insightful)

htnprm (176191) | more than 6 years ago | (#21263301)

"You mean you don't fill in Gordon's lines yourself?"

LOL. Doesn't everyone else nod with the mouse every time Alyx asks you a question? :-)

Re:Pretentious (1)

Fallingcow (213461) | more than 6 years ago | (#21263325)

Hahaha, you're not alone!

(sometimes, I shake my head no, but she doesn't seem to care.)

Thank you (1, Interesting)

caitsith01 (606117) | more than 6 years ago | (#21262097)

You have expressed what I've always thought about Half Life 2. I played through it with all of those "greatest game of all time" reviews in the back of my mind, and as with you it left me strangely cold. The scripted sequences were a little too scripted, the characters seemed to be relying on a whole range of history and interaction which happened 'off camera' so to speak, and the most interesting aspects of it (such as the mysterious gentleman who gives you your initial mission, and the excellent house-to-house fighting sequence towards the end) were not developed anywhere near as much as they could have been.

On top of which, the 'puzzles' were extraordinarily artificial - what, all those boxes and blanks and levers just *happened* to be perfectly balanced in such a way as to create one exact path through to the place where you really want to be?

To the parent poster, and anyone else who felt the same - if you haven't played Deus Ex, get it immediately. It looks a little dated graphics wise, but the gameplay and immersion will blow you away when you compare it to HL2 or the supposedly brilliant Bioshock. (Stay away from DX2, however, a turkey made for console gamers).

Re:Thank you (1)

RogueyWon (735973) | more than 6 years ago | (#21264095)

Yes, I think Deus Ex was what, for me, ruined Half-Life 2. Up to that point, fps protagonists had either been completely mute, or else they'd been... well... Duke Nukem. Deus Ex demonstrated that you could work dialogue into an fps that actually improved the experience and added to the atmosphere. Most other plot-heavy fpses since then have gone down that route and, had HL2 or Bioshock chosen to go down that route, both would have been massively enhanced.

Re:Pretentious (1)

DarKlajid (91200) | more than 6 years ago | (#21266023)

Agreed.
I rarely post here, but this got my attention:

I only recently purchased the orange box, mostly because I wanted to play/buy Portal and got tricked to buy the whole package (You know the situation: You don't need it, but somehow the mere existence of something makes you want it. Right now).

I didn't finish HL2 yet. That's odd for me, because usually I even have to remind myself to eat during play-sessions. But HL2 is really, really disappointing. So far there really _IS_ no story. I'd say "Spoiler ahead", but there's nothing to spoil.

- Get of a train, bullied by combine soldiers
- See a so-called friend who mumbles something about "you need to get out here" (this sentence sums up the whole story, imo)
- Run around clueless
- End up running away from the combine
- Ultimately get caught, no matter what
- Meet the female main char, fail to be teleported
- Run/Shoot*
- Get a boat
- Drive/Shoot
- Play with a gravity gun, meet at least _some_ talking characters that don't start with "Gordon! You need to get out of here"
- Run/Shoot (Zombies/Mutants! Yay! HL Source in HL2?)
- Get a buggy
- Drive/Shoot

Okay, I'm a little ahead of that point and stopped (although it got a little more interesting with this Nova facility/the rescue mission), but really.. Yes, this is a FPS game and built to fight/shoot your way out. But so far there really IS NO STORY whatsoever imo. Not at all. This feels like Serious Sam, only without the funny comments and with some physic engine demonstrations.

Not sure if I'll finish HL2 at all so far.

*) Several "You need to get out of here" dialogs included

Re:Pretentious (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21267905)

I'll not have you denigrate the acting achievements of Mark Hamill. The man has sacrificed of himself for our edification and should be lauded, should be paraded through the streets upon our shoulders to the roaring, exultant sounds of a Brass Band, cheering crowds, and tissue tape.

Whilst at the Escapist (1)

Stavr0 (35032) | more than 6 years ago | (#21260623)

take the opportunity to click on Zero Punctuation: The Orange Box [escapistmagazine.com]

Re:Whilst at the Escapist (1)

DiniZuli (621956) | more than 6 years ago | (#21261027)

he heee - that was funny :-) Definitely worth a watch that (weird!) review. I don't agree with him on ep2 though, but then again: he did say if you loved hl2 you would love ep2 and I did love hl2 (and ep2).

I'm not buying it... (1)

AndyCR (1091663) | more than 6 years ago | (#21260665)

I'll file this in the "interesting but completely coincidental" section.

Black Mesa: Source (1)

samwh (921444) | more than 6 years ago | (#21260773)

I was kinda hoping this was an article on the mod Black Mesa: Source that has been delayed so long instead of a pretentious Escapist piece.

Re:Black Mesa: Source (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21262317)

I was kinda hoping this was an article on the mod Black Mesa: Source that has been delayed so long

the mod is a lie
the mod is a lie
the mod is a lie
the mod is a lie

  Heh.

  No, but seriously, I think Black Mesa: Source will be released about the same time as Duke Nukem: Forever: Episode Four: Part Four: The Fourgasm.
  How exactly did BM:S win that "Mod of the Year" award in 2006, when they've released nothing at all except a handful of screenshots and a flash-heavy website? You'd think they'd release a level or two so people didn't start thinking it was vaporware. Y'know, let us run around in "Surface Tension" while we wait for "Forget About Freeman" to be finished.
    Hell, maybe they could even do an actual status update now and then, rather than just forum posts saying "STFU! It'll be done when it's done! User banned! Thread locked!" all the time.

Uru Live (1)

Calmiche (531074) | more than 6 years ago | (#21260797)

Heh. I liked the Uru article a lot more. As a staunch Myst fan and a D'ni (Pronounced Dunny) fanatic, I thought it was a great writeup. I've been playing Uru since the beta in 2003. I've got notebooks full of D'ni writings, translations and thoughts. It's a really in-depth game, and a hugely different MMORPG experience from WoW or Everquest.

If you like Math, Logic, languages and an extremely deep storyline, Uru might be for you. Just be aware that it's not a leveling game. Experience is measured by personal knowledge of in game culture and events, not time spent grinding.

Re:Uru Live (1)

etherlad (410990) | more than 6 years ago | (#21262671)

I've been trying to plug Uru for ages, pun not intended. Sadly, most people I talk to just don't get it. "There's nothing to kill? You just talk and solve puzzles? I don't get it; what do you do?"

But I've managed to bring my brother down, and he's mostly a Team Fortress-esque player, with occasional forays into more tradition FPS territory. He found he liked it (particularly Kadish Tolesa - can't wait to show him Ahnonay, now that it's out).

See you in-cavern. (:

Re:Uru Live (1)

75th Trombone (581309) | more than 6 years ago | (#21263315)

D'ni (Pronounced Dunny)

Pronounced "Dunny" by Rand Miller as Atrus in the supposed-to-be-games games, but pronounced "d-NEE" by the actual, English-speaking D'ni Yeesha in the supposed-to-be-real Uru. And also pronounced something close to "d-NEE" by the actual D'ni Esher in Myst V.

In short, all the cool kids say "d-NEE" these days. :)

game endings are dead (1)

xPsi (851544) | more than 6 years ago | (#21261335)

The issue also features an article entitled The Ending Has Not Yet Been Written, about the never-ending story of Massively Multiplayer Online Games.
Many game story lines (HL2, for example) don't end anymore, not just Massively Multiplayer Online Games. Game companies have apparently taken a cue from TV writers and refuse to actually end anything. Every "ending's" a cliffhanger or leads to one. This may actually be a part of the business model, but I think it also comes from sloppy writing. Don't get me wrong, I think HL2 has an enjoyable set of characters with a cool setting. There is even some good dialogue. However, I think many recent writers have lost the ability to actually bring game stories and plots to a satisfying closure. Portal is a notable recent exception.

Re:game endings are dead (1)

legoman666 (1098377) | more than 6 years ago | (#21261727)

I beg to differ about the ending of Portal. While it was satisfying, it most definately was the opposite of closure.

Re:game endings are dead (1)

xPsi (851544) | more than 6 years ago | (#21262003)

Good point. Anticlosure?

Lame (3, Informative)

ildon (413912) | more than 6 years ago | (#21262019)

This reads like someone's college English thesis that started with the concept of "how can I pass off a video game as literature and make my teacher buy it without realizing I'm completely bullshitting the entire thing because I don't feel like researching a real work of fiction and would rather just reference a video game I played".

In other words, the last ditch effort written the night of the deadline just to get some kind of grade.

Re:Lame (1)

Applekid (993327) | more than 6 years ago | (#21266847)

" . . . I don't feel like researching a real work of fiction and would rather just reference a video game I played".
Obviously I can't get into the author's head, but...

Are games excluded from being art? What about HL2 makes it "fake fiction"? There are those (myself included) that feel that games could (and more narrowly, should) be considered art. What makes a story written in 500 pages more worthy than one written in 500 megabytes?

If we're going to invite people to look at games as art, naturally, we'll get some essays over symbolism and parallels and the same kind of analysis we subject other art to.

Re:Lame (1)

WilliamSChips (793741) | more than 6 years ago | (#21272283)

Well, considering that most of the things English professors say about "classic literature" is bullshit as well, he's just proven himself.

A chance to draw attention (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21265071)

To the fact that today, muslims are racistly killing Christians in Bethlehem.

http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1167467807655&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull [jpost.com]

Muslim racism is not just widespread in their countries btw, but almost universal. Nobody pays attention.

The funny thing about Gordon... (1)

EvilBenFranklin (900161) | more than 6 years ago | (#21266631)

The absolute funniest thing about Gordon was that back at M.I.T, he was such a joker. Seriously. Always kidding around, cracking wise, doing funny tricks with crowbars. We could never get the guy to shut up for more than ten minutes at a time!

The Second Coming (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21266987)

All of this connection to a second coming and a savior does inspire a new video game based on Christian theology. I think a game of the second coming of Jesus would be cool. You get to be Jesus and you come down from heaven and go around the earth killing demons and those who don't worship you. But with those who kneel at your feet, you can decide to show mercy to get heath or weapons or zap-power. Then you can decide on those you want to "Leave Behind" at the end of the game.

Ah, just a funny idea anyway.

Half-Life, the world's first FNPCS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#21267211)

Gordon, I can't get through this gate. Crawl through this dirty hole and go open it from the other side.

Gordon, It's dark. Crawl in this headcrab infested vent and go turn on the lights.

Striders? Gordon will kill them, won't you, Gordon? What's that? I don't hear a no... Now get to work.

Appreciate What the Author Is Attempting (1)

SonicTheDeadFrog (1155815) | more than 6 years ago | (#21267371)

Admittedly the two stories have nothing substantial in common, and the author could have easily chosen one that did. He should have left the reference at the poetic similarity of the opening statement and moved on. However, when I look at what he's trying to do, I appreciate it. When people started gushing over BioShock I though "Holy crap, if the same people who only gave HL2's awesome story a passing mention are taking the time to go nuts over this, then it must be life-altering." But in reality, BioShock's story was only good, it wasn't spectacular or earth shattering. What this signifies is that people are finally starting to call attention to good storytelling in games in general. This author is attempting to say is that HL2 told an awesome story well before BioShock - this is nothing new, you're just noticing it for the first time.

Re:Appreciate What the Author Is Attempting (1)

WilliamSChips (793741) | more than 6 years ago | (#21276283)

Isn't Bioshock that game with Ayn Rand and the underwater city?
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