Dark Thoughts: Technicality vs. Personality
While reviewing things for the site and looking at a lot of gaming and movie media I have noticed something. Games/movies that are not the most technically sound but have a lot of personality are sometimes said to be just as good, if not better than other projects that look or play spectacularly but are kind of boilerplate and don’t have much heart. But what makes a game/movie better: personality or technicality?
For games, a couple of games that come to mind are Condemned 2: Bloodshot and Resident Evil 5 (since they are both horror(well, “horror” for RE5)). RE5 is a great looking game from head to toe, fantastic looking character models and pretty solid gameplay. But from a story perspective kind of lacking. Maybe it’s because I haven’t been playing the Resident Evil series the entire time, but I found the story a little dry and so far withdrawn from any kind of horror elements it might have had that it was just another third-person shooter. Now Condemned 2 looked alright but not as good as RE5. The textures looked a bit grungy, the environments in a level are a little hard to navigate and the combat, while great when it hit, was not as accurate and made it kind of hard to land a hit. There were also a couple of points where enemies would literally just pop up right in front of you and start swinging. But the story really grips you by the gonads and pulls you in. The entire game is atmospheric as all hell, making a very creepy fucking game which makes good on its promises of being a very creepy fucking game. Also the weird enemy popping in thing kinda worked for me. It gave me a pretty good jump scare to be walking down a hall and then all of a sudden a psychopath half-clad in medieval armor wielding a battle hammer is right in front of me waiting to use my skull as an ash tray.
In terms of movies, the only two that come to my mind are James Cameron’s Avatar and The Evil Dead trilogy. To date, Avatar is one of the most visually stunning movies I have ever seen. I saw it in 2-D but I was still blown away by how amazing it looked. But that was the only real saving grace of the film. The story was so close to something like FernGully or Pocahontas I had felt like I had already seen it, just not as pretty. If you read my Evil Dead trilogy review, you will know that I have a severe love of this series. It is one of the funniest and scariest series I have seen and it is my favorite series of all time. But, it does not have to best look to it. You can clearly see that every single piece of special effects is pretty terrible looking, either through shitty green screening, stupid rubber puppets and choppy stop-motion animation. Also the acting is pretty awful, but what can you expect from a B-movie. But all that stuff almost enhances the experience making, what is in my humble opinion, one of the best film series ever.
What does everyone else out there think? Leave some comments, let your voice be heard.