Tag Archives: shooters

On being cannon fodder

Cuz I was getting butchered. Geddit??

I played some multiplayer in Modern Warfare 3 the other day because, well, I am a sucker.

Now, I have a not-so-secret aversion to FPS multiplayer. I am absolutely terrible at it, which is a big part of why I dislike it so. I have never been much of a “twitch” gamer, and I love to absolutely jam on every button on the controller as hard as possible, especially in those tense, firefight moments. This is an “end user” problem, to be sure.

However, another reason I am bad at it (and why I don’t enjoy multiplayer) is that it’s often really freakin’ hard to get better at it when I’m thrown in with a bunch of experts and my average life-expectancy is in the sub 10-second mark. While this isn’t an insurmountable hurdle (“rookies” get better all the time by playing with experts – hell, the trailer for the game even points this dynamic out), I find it very difficult and incredibly frustrating.

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Battlefield 3 and “realistic” war

So, unless you never watch TV (and people like that actually exist, right?), you’ve probably been bombarded by ads for Battlefield 3. Yes, I sort-of want to play it (even though am not a huge shooter fan). Yes, it looks very good. Indeed, the ads claim that it’s “the most realistic shooter” ever. Which made me wonder: what does it mean to play a “hyper-realistic” shooter set in a current and on-going conflict? Is it morally problematic to “play” at things that everyday Americans are living “for real”–and even dying “for real”? I can see at least 2 and 1/2 ways of breaking this down:  
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