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access_time June 17, 2014 at 3:02 PM in Features by Maggie Wiland

My Disc Is Hard


Ok look, I’ll be the first one to admit that that title is totally immature and suitable comedy only for 12 year olds. That being said, I also woke up yesterday and ate quesadillas while watching Tiny Toons, so it’s not a far leap that I’d make dick jokes considering I’m apparently still a kid. That all aside, I thought it was funny, so screw off. My friend Matt does this thing where he starts a brand new game and immediately puts it on the hardest difficulty there is. In fact, I’m not sure-except for maybe achievement cleanup purposes-that he’s EVER played a game on anything below the hardest difficulty level. He claims it’s because it makes it more fun, and I’ve heard this argument before from others, so it isn’t something that only he does. However, how does it make it more fun? See, to me, if it’s a game I don’t know anything about and I can’t get anywhere because it’s new AND I KNOW NOTHING ABOUT IT, that’s fucking frustrating!

I’ve beaten all the L4D campaigns on expert. I’ve gotten through all the Halo campaigns on legendary. I 100% Splosion Man which meant no checkpoints and one hit kills. I am no stranger to higher difficulties. But how did I do these things, and how did I do them relatively easily? Because I gained experience from playing through the game beforehand on a normal difficulty level. There’s no shame attached to it either. Hardcore gamers like to scream out “casual!” and all this nonsense, but there’s absolutely nothing wrong with playing a game on the normal difficulty level. THAT’S WHY IT’S FUCKING THERE. If they didn’t want you to play it, it wouldn’t be an option! Now, let’s take into consideration for one moment WHY people would do this. Because ratcheting up the difficulty level means increasing the gametime (harder means longer, hehehe I’m 12) and therefore lengthening to the amount of game you get to enjoy, plus it does tend to make you a better gamer because you’re so focused. I’ll admit, I’m far better now at shooters for having beaten COD4 on Veteran. That sommabitch was HARD. But…it isn’t enjoyable right off the bat to me.

diff_curve_hard_GamesAnd it’s a personal thing. I get that. Some people like to torture their victims before killing them. I like to eat parts of mine. It varies from person to person. We all have our personal tastes, and I’m not going to deny someone their personal taste or their idea of fun or their right to party. What kind of sick country would this be if we were denied our right to party? A godless one, that’s what. But parties aside, it’s true. While it’s fun for others-like Matt-it just isn’t applicable to how I like to enjoy my games. I want to play through, get to know the game first, ya know? Take the game out to dinner, maybe buy it a drink or two before turning up the difficulty and letting it screw me, and then never call again (LIKE ALWAYS, GREG), but it’s what I like to do. I want to know what and where I’m going before dying a thousand times and not gaining any ground. It’s just what I prefer.

And some guys get off on being harder now right off the bat. Dark Souls is notorious for that. Flappy Bird is considered hard. It’s also considered fun for some reason, I’ll let you guys figure that one out. So now, not only do we have people who put the games hardest difficulty on right from the get go, but the games are doing it themselves now! It’s a personal preference. It’s just something I’ve noticed and it bothers me because while I won’t directly attack people for it (but I’ll write a strongly worded article on the internet, gosh darnit!), people WILL attack me and call me a pussy for NOT doing it. The gaming community is often bizarre and highly unenjoyable these days. I wish things were easier again.

I just want to go back to eating ghosts in brightly colored mazes.

I also still think that title is funny.

Photo 530Maggie Wiland is a 24 y/o transgirl. She wanted to slay space dragons while riding go karts for a living, but has now been resigned to bitching about video games after realizing she is ultimately talentless in every other aspect of her life. She’s also been said to make a mean casserole. Follow her on twitter and writes poetry on tumblr.


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