One of the games that comes with Games With Gold this month on XBL for the 360 is “Gotham City Imposters”, which I’ve been wanting to play for a long time now but could never afford because other things cost money like groceries, hookers, or keeping my child factory slave labors employed. Hey, those kids ain’t gonna make shoes for free ok? Anyway, I was excited so I downloaded it and I wasn’t surprised by how much I liked it (I’m not a huge superhero fan, I would like Batman the most because he isn’t super, he’s just a dude with a lot of money. He’s the rich man’s Kick-Ass) because I love mashup kind of stuff. Things that are extended universe; part of the series but also mocking it. That’s kind of what this is. But I WAS surprised by just how much it reminded me of Team Fortress 2, and not even in a small way. I mean this game is literally TF2 but with a weird Batman reskin.
And I’m never one to compare titles, especially compare titles not related to one another. It’s bad enough to compare a sequel to it’s predecessor, but when you start comparing arcade games that have no relation it just gets downright silly. So I was a bit perplexed by how immediate that connection was made in my head because I never ever do that. But it really is. I mean it is. And, it’s more fun too. It reminded me so much of TF2 that after a few days of playing, I popped in my Orange Box disc and loaded up TF2 and found it was less enjoyable not only than before but also comparatively to Gotham City Imposters. This brings me to another point. The birth of this weird multiplayer only genre that’s emerged.
Brink, Gotham City Imposters, TF2, Shadowrun; these games that only exist in a multiplayer universe, essentially plotless. I know it harkens back to old style gaming which is nice but it’s also become kind of a niche genre all it’s own. Castle Crashers is another good one, or even the other Behemoth game available with GFG this month, Battleblock Theater. Charlie Murder, from last month is another one. I’m not against these games at all, but it does seem weird that this is now a thing all its own, and what’s weird is how comparative they all are to one another. Listen we can compare FPS’s til’ the cows come home, ok? And that’s gonna take a while, cause the Cows just called me and their plane got delayed at the Denver International Airport, so it’s gonna be like a 14 hour debate. Not to mention they still have to stop by and pick up Edgar in Austin, Texas. We got some time to kill. It’s easy to compare shooters, because they’re all the same, on a base level. Man gets gun, man uses gun, people die by mans gun. This is every shooter. What makes shooters harder to compare are the little things that they have added that makes each and everyone one unique. Sure, you could compare Modern Warefare 2 to Bioshock Infinite, but all you’re really comparing is much more fun one is to use a gun in than the other because while they’re both shooters, they’re also totally different. That’s what makes comparing them so stupid. Adventure title games are more story based, little harder to compare. Unless you’re doing Tomb Raider and Uncharted, because the internet loves to hate everything that came before it. RPGs are the same way.
So yes, while we can compare games, it’s a dumb idea because all we’re really comparing when it boils down to it is “which is more overly fun to play”. Just because COD and Halo both have a dude with a weapon running around shooting people in the face doesn’t make them the same game. Yes, it’s fair to draw comparisons. Yes, it’s easy to draw comparisons. Yes, it’s STUPID to draw comparisons. Especially when both titles like those suck major eggs.
So here we stand, back at the start. Me comparing TF2 to Gotham City Imposters. Yes, one’s more fun than the other FROM A PERSONAL PREFERENCE STANDPOINT, and yes they’re extremely alike and yes they’re are-when it boils down to it-very very very similar BUT THEY AREN’T. THE SAME. GAME. Which is why I hate that I even made the comparison to begin with. A lot like in my last article where I compared The Maw to Mutant Space Blobs. If video games are to be art, as we apparently consider them to be, then art is subjective to the piece itself. You shouldn’t compare The Mona Lisa with Andy Warhols soup can because while they’re both paintings, they’re entirely different. On some basic fundamental level they’re comparative but on the whole they’re completely different. That’s why if video games are art, they shouldn’t be compared to one another. Each one is lovingly crafted (unless it’s a yearly churned out franchise, but even then at some level in there there’s SOMEONE that cares) at a different unique studio and the vision is always different for each title. We need to stop comparing things and just allow things to stand on their own as what they are.
Gotham City Imposters is fun, go download it now if you have Gold and play the ever lovin’ crap out of it.
But DON’T call it TF2.
Maggie 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.