Tuesday, December 14, 2010

RDR Gets Some Love

It's the end of the year, which means lots of "Best of" articles and "Top Ten" lists. I guess these are supposed to remind us that we're turning a page in our lives, even though the delineation between Dec 31st and Jan 1st is completely arbitrary.

But before I drift off into some boring rant involving Julius Caeser and Pope Gregory XIII, I'll focus on the topic at hand: Video Game of the Year.

Predictably, Red Dead Redemption is the consensus choice, in spite of my less-than-flattering review. (Note the misspelling of the title: Redepmtion. Thanks for the heads up, careful readers.) Using words like "verisimilitude", these video game reviewers extol the artistic virtue of the scenery, the careful storytelling, and the moral compass of John Marston.

And while all of these characteristics are indeed interesting, they don't by themselves make the game fun to play. A Monet masterpiece, a Beethoven sonata, a Shakespearean sonnet - all amazing art, but definitely not best experienced with an XBox controller in your hands. If I played a pixellated avatar exploring a museum, I wouldn't call it Game of the Year. While I certainly appreciate a game reviewer's desire to elevate the medium, and with it their own importance, I cannot agree that art alone makes a good game. You have to want to play it, not just look at it.

In Eagles news, the defense has been weakened significantly by the losses of Stewart Bradley and Brandon Graham. And in spite of spending (wasting) a third-round pick on Daniel Te'O-Nesheim, they signed an aging castoff Derrick Burgess instead of relying on the rookie's contributions. Says all you need to know about that blown pick.


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