SFQA: Favorite Game Moment of the Year (So Far)
Hey, Spawners! This is the beginning of a new regular feature, the SFQA, in which we, the SpawnFirst writing staff, answer a single question a week about games. This question will change from week-to-week, and we’d love for you to participate by chiming in on your favorite gaming moments in the comments below.
My favorite game moment of 2013 so far? Picture this: all is silent. You’re running through a swampy and decimated part of downtown New York. Your Cell suit feels constricted, your breathing labored from constantly sprinting to and from protected shelters and abutments. Just in view, you see a perfect spot: a vent with a single ingress, 100 meters ahead – perfect for fortifying yourself in. You look around your vicinity, taking deliberate steps towards your last chance of making it out alive.
Suddenly, the ping of your proximity alarm goes off. Something is close by.
You make a break for the vent.
80 meters…70…60… The pings increase in frequency – it’s hunting you…
…40…30…almost there…a heavy alloy arrow bears down and just misses your head as you juke desperately…
Crysis 3’s Hunter multiplayer mode provided me with many of the greatest multiplayer moments I’ve known this year. The thrill of being a hunter, and the utter terror of being a Cell soldier; both experiences coalesce to create one of the more innovative multiplayer modes unveiled this year. Don’t miss out on one of the best sleeper online modes available in 2013. Check it out.
I was originally going to pick something from Bioshock Infinite. And it totally deserves every single mention. It’s great. But in the interest of variety and looking hip to the kids, I’m going to pick something else, namely Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon. An 80’s-tastic twist on the original jungle-emup it manages the difficult task of being both fun, and very funny. It’s self-aware without being overly ‘ironic’ and doesn’t make the all too common mistake of sacrificing gameplay for storytelling. The script is brilliant and cheesy in equal measure, with references ranging from Predator to Die Hard to Assassin’s Creed. The highlight of the game however has to be luring the titular Blood Dragons (giant, neon, laser beam firing lizards) into an enemy camp, letting it brutally murder them all, and then charging in to finish the beast with your quad-barrelled shotgun. For all that games can be about narrative and art, sometimes you just want to annihilate a laser dragon with exploding bullets. And when you do, get your ass to Mars! And by Mars I mean Blood Dragon! And remember kids, winners don’t use drugs.
The ending of The Last of Us has definitely stayed lodged in my mind since playing it. It’s an ending that successfully avoids the cliches normally forced on people in games and even movies. The Last of Us is by far the best game I’ve played all year, and it’s because of the game’s tremendous story. I can think of at least a dozen moments from the game that left me shaken, smiling or moved, but the ending left me reeling like no other ending to a game has done before. It’s perfect.
I’m going to be a little different and name my favourite gaming moment – as a spectator. There’s the inevitable thrill of progressing through a tearjerker or thriller of a game by yourself, but there’s also something to be said about watching other individuals play professionally.
There’s been story experiences this year that I could ramble on all day about (and as many people have found out, I won’t shut up once I’m on the topic), so its odd that what’s stuck with me the most thus far is my recent romp in last year’s indie darling Hotline Miami. Granted it was the PSN re-release, it doesn’t diminish my undying love for the title. I’ve never strung so many four-letter words together before in my life than I had while playing – nor have I ever had so much pure entertainment from my own frustration.
There have been a lot of great gaming moments so far this year, to include some pretty thrilling and shocking ones in Naughty Dog’s Last of Us, but I think my favorite moment so far is, weirdly, pretty much everything the Lutece twins do in Irrational’s Bioshock Infinite. One moment, however, stands above the rest. In an early scene, Rosalind presents you with a tray with a coin on it, and Robert wears a sandwich board with tallies for heads or tails. ”Heads?” he says, “or tails?” she chimes in. You flip the coin, which comes to its inevitable conclusion, and as the two walk away from you, you see the back of the sandwich board covered in tallies for heads, never for tails. It’s the first– and incredibly clever– glimpse into the ultimate theme of the game: choice, or the illusion thereof. Plus, they’re awesomely zen and equally quietly creepy.