Short Script: Splinter Cell: Conviction

The BioShock 2 Short Script has taken a bit of a backseat, since I simply couldn't resist writing one for Splinter Cell: Conviction while playing it. There was more than enough for me to work with, to say the least. Most of my frustrations with the game stemmed from the nature of the PC version, which is prone to uneven performance and framerate issues. A quick Google search reveals a plethora of users suffering similar problems. At times I found it to be a genuine chore to play through the game, and while I finish all games I purchase on principle alone, I dare say it was the accompanying Short Script that helped to propel me to the end. It's a shame, because the game does get a lot of things right.

Short Script: Mass Effect 2

In this post, I've already touched upon the differences in gameplay between Mass Effect 1 and 2. After having completed Mass Effect 2 a second time (without importing a character this time), I can safely say that I don't have to go back on my words. Its Short Script is now available, and it manages to eclipse its predecessor's in length, but only just. It helps if you've read the Mass Effect script first.

Short Script: Mass Effect

As I mentioned in this post, I recently played both Mass Effect and its sequel back-to-back. Having now finished both games, I present the Short Script of the first entry in the series, which is currently the longest one on the blog by a wide margin. This is a testament to the amount of content in the game, especially when considering all the things I cut or didn't put in. Casually talking to Wrex about saving his species after destroying the cure to the genophage on Virmire, some flying turrets looking like three sticks glued together, Matriarch Benezia's overacted melancholy... all aspects that were initially included but ultimately removed for pacing reasons.

Short Script: BioShock

To celebrate the release of BioShock 2, I present the Short Script of its predecessor. BioShock is an example of a very specific type of story which lends itself exceptionally well to being told through the medium of videogames: an aftermath story. This typically involves the player being thrust into a game world where many things have happened which are not immediately made clear, but are responsible for leaving said game world in its current state. The System Shock series, to which BioShock is a spiritual successor, also uses this story model. It allows for many different narrative techniques, from obvious means (audio logs, wall scrawlings, survivors) to less than obvious ones (the appearance of certain rooms, corpses). In this case, dead men do tell tales.

Short Script: Kane & Lynch: Dead Men

The hype surrounding Kane & Lynch: Dead Men got me genuinly excited, and while the game had an interesting story, intriguing characters and inspired set pieces, its gameplay mechanics were average at best and derivative at worst. I found myself annoyed at times and I really had to trudge through some of the later levels to see the story play out. Put simply: it wasn't fun. And as an esteemed cohort of mine said: "A game with bad gameplay and a good story will get trumped by a game with good gameplay and a bad story". However, Kane & Lynch's narrative does present a few interesting traits, a few of which I'm going to delve into here.

Short Script: Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2

Ah yes, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2. What can I say that hasn't been said a thousand times before? Well, this. As in the script, the following post contains spoilers if you're one of the three people who hasn't yet played the game. Anyone talking about Modern Warfare 2 can't help but mention the 'No Russian' level, where you play an undercover operative being forced to take part in the killings of innocent civilians. Going past what others have said, I'm interested in a player's response to this level when that player had no prior knowledge of it. I'd like to hear the reaction of someone who somehow missed all the pre-release footage of 'No Russian', had a wild ride on a snowmobile and suddenly found themselves witnessing and/or participating in a massacre. It's fair to say that the (intentionally?) leaked footage helped in softening everyone up to the idea, if not getting everyone interested on whatever point on the morality spectrum.

Short Script: Deus Ex

This blog will not only serve to disseminate my opinions to whoever might be interested in them, but also as a repository for a series of Short Scripts on games. Some of you may be familiar with The Editing Room, a site that periodically posts abridged movie scripts which poke fun at recurrent flaws in their stories and presentation. I applied this idea to games and wrote up a quick script on one of my favourite games: Deus Ex. Because it was so fun to do, I plan to write more of these and post them here on an irregular basis. The Deus Ex script has been made available and can be viewed by clicking the link at the top of this post. I will also be using each accompanying post to briefly elaborate on (the story of) the game in question, beyond what the script itself touches on.