Friday, January 14, 2011

Rage Against Invisible Walls

I fancy myself a nerd. I like comic books, manga, anime, cartoons, reading, video games, DND, sci-fi, webcomics, the works. If it's nerdy, I've at least dabbled in it.

When it comes to video games I generally stick to RPG's and adventure games. I prefer consoles though I also like online MMORPG's such as Ragnarok or WoW. I'm a huge fan of Nintendo, the only new console that I have is a Wii because Xbox and Playstation don't have enough games that I'm interested in. I also have a gold limited edition DSlite with a zelda Triforce on it that I play regularly.

I don't like the Halo franchise. I kind of hate it. I think it's overrated and has inundated the gamer world with posers that think because they play a stupid game like Halo they can officially call themselves gamers when a something like Ninja Gaiden would make them want to die (seriously, it's really hard).

I'm also really bad at first person shooters. That doesn't mean I don't try to play them. When I was a kid my dad used to play Quake all the time and Big Sister and I got him to teach us how to play. Even then I had a tendency to get distracted. I was more interested in exploring every nook and cranny and taking the time to make sure everything was dead and all secrets were discovered - even if it meant using cheat codes to enter godmode, walk through walls or even fly (don't judge me, I was eight).

I also thoroughly enjoyed Half-life (1 and 2), F.E.A.R. and Doom, but the fact remains... I have terrible twitch reflexes and when I get startled I panic, shooting with abandon (in game, I don't shoot with abandon in real life). I'm also an expressive gamer. I get really into games. I talk to characters, make faces, get emotionally attached, I'm easily side tracked, I have a terrible sense of direction in REAL life let alone in video games, the whole nine yards. All of this comes together and makes me really bad at first-person-shooters.

When I was fifteen a few friends of mine and Cousin D (who was visiting from Germany) and I went to a LAN up the hill from where I lived. We were all going to play Battlefield 1942, a first person shooter.

I was so terrible at this game I didn't even know what team I was on. I thought my friend sitting next to me was on my team so when I stumbled across an abandoned building with a flag pole and changed the flag color from white to some random (as far as I was concerned) color I leaned over to my friend and told him. He ignored me. He shouldn't have.

I had been killed so many times that even people on the other team ignored me if they saw me run by or staring at a wall. This meant I didn't die as much. I took the opportunity to try and learn how to fly an airplane.

I tried flying that airplane but I kept turning upside down, or crash landing so eventually I just started driving it along the ground.

I drove that plane along the ground to three different abandoned bases and changed all the flags to the random color that I had learned was my team color. Each time I leaned over and told my friend what I had just done. He continued to ignore me.

Suddenly the game ended announcing that my team had won, despite the other team getting more kills. No one knew how until someone mentioned that they had no idea how we (my team) had gotten so many flags. That's when I told them what I had spent my time doing.

That's also when I learned the guy that was sitting next to me that I had been talking to all along was on the other team.

Next example:

Mom, Big Sister and I were visiting family in Germany for the holidays and Cousin N and D were playing Black Hawk Down online. They invited Big Sister and I to play as well. I eagerly hop on and start exploring the war-torn town when I notice there is a BATH TUB in the window of the building in front of me.

It was over. I needed to find that bath tub and jump in it.

Someone shot me and I died.

I respawned somewhere else, but my past life still carried with me the memory of the bath tub and the desire to be in it. It became my mission to find that house again. It took me an hour of constantly dying and and coming back to life until I found that house. Overjoyed I ran through the house and into the room with the tub.

I stopped and stared at it reverently for a moment before I jumped to fulfill the final desire I had... and bounced off an invisible wall.

Shock took over. No... why? Why would the creators of this map do such a thing?! Why would they put a bath tub there that no one could jump in?! It couldn't be real!

I had entered the stage of denial, trying repeatedly from different angles, hoping that there would be a way around the damned invisible wall but there was no such luck. I tried bargaining, asking my cousins if they knew how to get in the bath tub. They ignored me.

Anger followed (yes, I go out of order when it comes to the stages of loss). I was furious that I had spent so much time dedicated to this task for something as stupid as an invisible wall to prevent me from succeeding. In a blind rage I threw a grenade at the tub. It bounced off the cursed invisible wall and hit me, exploding and killing my character.

I sat in the chair, not moving despite my character coming back to life somewhere random on the map. I felt sadness before I gave up and told my cousins I wasn't having fun anymore.

I don't think I've ever accepted it. It haunts me to this day.


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