What makes the Souls series so appealing to you compare to other action RPGs?

Other Action RPGs have shitty combat. The vast majority of them do. How many games have better 3d melee 3rd person combat than the Souls series? Not very many, and the few that exist are not in the action RPG category, except maybe severance blade of darkness which I heard people say was better than Dark Souls and Dark Messiah but I haven’t been arsed to play yet. Finding good melee combat is a hard thing to do in the first place.

Beyond that, Dark Souls (and the series in general) is like that Gesamtkunstwerk thing people like to talk about, and I’m not just saying that because Mr B Tongue said it, I’m saying it based on different principles for different reasons.

Souls doesn’t just have a combat system that works on totally flat terrain with one on one enemy encounters, it has a combat system that varies significantly based on the terrain and structures surrounding the player. It varies significantly based on the number and type of enemies fighting the player. And it uses these as an opportunity to create level designs where enemies ambush you, surround you, fight you in conditions that favor them more than you, like tight hallways or from the high or low ground, with ranged reinforcements, and more.

Souls has level designs that are branched and interconnected, yet have a clear progression, beginning and end. It makes use of the Z axis to thread levels back through themselves in a number ways. On a higher level, it has a nonlinear progression between the whole levels, in the case of dark souls it has a multithreaded design that folds back in on itself in a number of places, so you can reach nearly anything in the areas before sen’s fortress with a skip and a jump. That and they just flat-out let you go to places you didn’t really need to early on, like new londo and the catacombs. New Londo even linked into the valley of drakes which links into everywhere else. They have shortcuts in the levels which get unlocked over time to interconnect areas and make runbacks shorter. This creates both a challenge to explore the world, and to route different paths across it to grab the shit you need to get other stuff done, and I like that type of backtracking.

Each game has a ton of different weapons that make the game all different and the courtesy to add massively varied enemies as well. Even the hollow enemies can be devastating, even if they’re a bit weak at higher levels due to more damage resistance. They’re all made in a way where it’s tricky to avoid their attacks, not just caring about doing a ton of damage or having a ton of health.

Not to mention they capitalized on a really unique netplay scheme before anyone else could, and it had the fringe benefit of preventing people in the single player from taking a degenerate strategy and ruining the difficulty curve of the game for themselves.

The Souls games did a lot of things right, they were just each crippled by a few things they critically fucked up.

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21 thoughts on “What makes the Souls series so appealing to you compare to other action RPGs?

  1. DJaeger July 8, 2016 / 6:27 pm

    To be honest, I think Kingdom Hearts 2 had a much more deep and complex combat system than Dark Souls, which had a great variety of options (almost DMC level of options), while linking almost all of them to all the weapons (so weapon choice didn’t limit your non-stat based capabilities). It worked like a charm for both one on one AND one vs many fights. The only problem was that it took a lot of time for someone to discover all of their options (something something accessibility), but they could make do with good usage of fewer tactics(I barely ever used summons).
    Started reading your articles recently, and I love them. You have joined the ranks of my favorite analysts (along with Core-A, Seth Kill and Sirlin). But I thought I could give my 2 cents here, and possibly direct you to something you might like.

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    • Chris Wagar July 8, 2016 / 8:40 pm

      Thank you for the compliments, and the suggestion, though I have to say that I’m incredulous. I’ve never heard anyone suggest KH was particular deep, and it never seemed that way to me. I’ll try looking into it.

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      • DJAEGER July 23, 2016 / 6:20 pm

        Hey man, just came back from holiday. I hadn’t checked your website in a long while, and I certainly didn’t expect you to have answered THIS fast.
        I suggest you look more into Kingdom Hearts 2 for combat depth, rather than the first Kingdom Hearts. While it is more possible that you have heard about the first one (easier to play imo, first game in the series, so first one to make such a huge crossover, huge deal when it came out in 2002, better story), and while I massively enjoyed that game too, it has nowhere near the combar depth that Kingdom Hearts 2 brought with it.
        I am way too lazy to link you videos, but things KH2 has going for it include, but are not limited to:
        – 4 or 5 starting attacks, depending on the enemy’s horizontal distance, vertical distance, and number. Starting the invisible combo counter, varying in damage.
        – Varying number of linking attacks, depending on the Keyblade you are wielding and the abilities you have equipped.
        – Good number of launchers (counted as semi-linkers, since they allow for continuation of a combo, hence they do not reset the combo counter and allow for a new starting attack to be performed).
        – Great air combo mechanics, allowing you to continue or start combos in the air and customize them (like in DMC).
        – Fantastic spells that are able to be used either on their own, as linkers or as finishers.
        – Finishers that were altered, depending on he amount of surrounding enemies, your height, their size, how far they were pushed back by your combo and other properties.
        – Summons (I did not bother with them much, so I don’t know how they work, but I have heard from others that they added quite a bit to the game actually).
        – Limit forms, which gave you a new set of abilities, while also altering the moves you already have (think of them as different Devil Triggers, albeit changing Sora more than that). Able to be triggered mid combo (if you got the execution down), in a similar way that V-Trigger does in Street Fighter V, allowing you to cancel attacks to increase the combo.
        – Limit breaks (or something like that), which consumed your MP bar for a big team special attack, also able to be cancelled into, even after finishers.
        – Great unlockable abilities that enhanced the way Sora moves and further made his repertoire more awesome.
        – Aside from the movement abilities, the way blocking worked was also incredible. In essence, you had to time it against opposing blockable moves (sort of like a parry, slightly more lenient timing), and if you did, you blocked a set amount of hits, rarely a staggered opponent. If the hits were a lot, you had to time more blocks. This was made better by enemies who had different block timings, since you had to block their attacks at those timings, and if you failed it, you were wide open (watch a fight vs Xaldin or Xigbar on youtube to see this in action). There was also the Reflect spell, also working similarly, blocking surrounding attacks upon activation (lenient timing), then bursting around Sora.
        – Countless enemies, each with a different kind of bullshit for you to go through or exploit.
        – Large number of very interesting bosses (both in the story and some extras), with a large moveset that challenges you in many different ways (eg. Xigbar, Xaldin, Saix, Demyx, Jafaar etc.). Many of them are quite bullshit to be honest, but isn’t that what bosses are for
        I could list some more, but I got lazy while doing so. Just left this here for you to take a look. Sorry if it is a bit badly structured.

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        • Chris Wagar July 23, 2016 / 7:27 pm

          KH2 is the one I have. I’ll give it a shot at some point in the future.

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          • DJaeger September 9, 2016 / 5:38 pm

            Since I know you are a big fan of speedruns (like me), I thought I would suggest to you a cool speedrun of that game: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wt2m_UsLueM
            Best part is the Data Boss Rush part (timestamp in the description). The rest is cool, but a bit too long, since the game is incredibly long on its own. The boss rush part kinda illustrates the depth and technicality of the game imo. The runners have terrible names and like to complain a bit, but it’s cool. The bloodybizkitz guy (dear god that name is terrible) has a Youtube channel and uploads tons of boss rush runs, showcasing different strats (he recently found a new one for the first boss I think) so you can check it out if you wish.

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  2. MasterPokey July 10, 2016 / 4:01 pm

    Kingdom Hearts isn’t deep at all. I played it when I was like, 8, and I knew even then it’s combat was basically bullshit. Also, mixing Disney and Final Fantasy makes me sick. The two styles are pretty incompatible, and I believe they were first fused as an attempt to make Baby’s first final fantasy. The world of final fantasy, especially 6’s, is already an interesting one, and adding Disney influences does nothing to improve it. I admit I liked the first KH as a kid, but going back to it, it’s only amusing that people defend it. Dark souls may not be particularly deep, and it’s certainly not a hard core game like most people say it is. However, it’s combat is pretty fun, and it can be challenging at times. Demon souls and Dark souls worlds were also very good, and felt adult without being bland and gray like many games. Also, DMC has so little depth compared to Ninja Gaiden. I recently played DMC4, and I was astounded at how little content there was, i.e., you fight each boss 2-3 times. The number of combos and weapons also is pretty bad compared to Ninja Gaiden’s.

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    • Chris Wagar July 12, 2016 / 11:41 pm

      I’ve had people say that Ninja Gaiden is deeper than DMC a few times now and I don’t see it. I can certainly approve of its variety of enemies and their design, but I see very little differentiation between the different moves in the wide moveset you’re offered in Ninja Gaiden. DMC3/4 offers more individual command moves that have more difference in their function where ninja gaiden forces you to start with the same moves in many circumstances, so the later moves are fundamentally less varied because they need to be linked to the earlier ones. I’m sorry if this is a bit much, but could you make a case for the differentiation between all the moves in ninja gaiden on a more or less individual level versus DMC? Like, how does every listed combo serve a significantly unique function versus the others?

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  3. MasterPokey July 14, 2016 / 2:27 am

    My time is now very limited, but maybe I’ll come back in some time and do this topic justice. For now, I can only talk generally about why I think NG is deeper. In DMC 4, you generally only use the same 3 or 4 combos repeatedly, alternating between them for the best rank. There’s a combo that takes the enemy in the air with you, an air combo, a dash combo, and a ground combo. Of course, there are more moves than this, but these are the main bread and butter combos. There are also ranged weapons.

    In ninja gaiden 2, there are 10 main weapons that all handle and feel extremely differently, each with many unique combos, and 5 ranged weapons. I haven’t played for a while, and I don’t have my Xbox 360 setup, but I’ll try to differentiate combos based on what I remember, at least for the Tonfa. There’s a combo so you can launch your enemy into the air, which gets them away from you, and you can juggle them after that point. There’s a combo to take your enemy into the air, and then you can either A. Juggle them in the air with you, or B. do an izuna drop which is high in damage but takes a long time. However, Izuna drop takes forever and so lowers your rank, even if it is a flashy and high damage move. There are multiple combos that are best at 1 on 1 damage, while there are multiple combos which offer good crowd control but less overall damage. Different combos have different effective spread vs. damage. There’s a combo which you do directly after rolling, and is good for recovering, there are multiple counter moves that have split second timings. There are moves that you perform exactly as you land to clear out enemies after you perform an air combo (so that you can land safely). Also, you can cancel combos by dodging, which offers further depth. There’s a guillotine throw move, and a falcon dive which usually takes their heads off and is great for recovery. The falcon dive also grants you invincibility when you’re stuck with an explosion shuriken. And, while the different weapons do have combos that are similar in function, each weapon has a unique range, speed, and general strategy. The dual swords, for example, are somewhat good at crowd control, and are pretty fast. The Lunar staff, on the other hand, is far better at crowd control and has better range. The tonfa is great for chaining moves into a high number, which also factors into rank. I don’t have time to go through each specific combo right now, but I’ll try to do this in the next month or two if I have time. I do admit that some combos may be somewhat redundant, but the simple fact that different combos take different times and have varying damages/speeds that may be easier or more effective, but give you worse rank, lends the game further strategic depth. I’m guessing there are hundreds of combos between the 10 weapons, and even if 25% of these are redundant (which is probably higher than the actual number) then there are still a ton of unique combos with different functions. Also, there are simply way more different enemies in NG that demand different strategies. There is also a strategic de-limbing system and ultimate charging. If you don’t delimb an enemy, then you give them a chance to jump on you and do a high damage kamikaze attack. The ultimate techniques cost energy for a fast charge, are free for a slow charge, but leave you open if you don’t time them precisely.

    I’m no expert on the DMC series, and I’ve only beaten 4, (albeit I did beat it on hard and I got mostly S,A, and B rank) but how many different weapons, combos, and combo functions are there? I feel like Dante has to switch forms even to have a roll which rivals the utility of Ryu’s, or to have a legitimate counter attack, while it would offer you more options at any given moment if he simply had access to all these different moves at once. Furthermore, you spend the majority of the game fighting the unimaginative rag doll and spirit knight enemies. The enemy variety and boss variety is objectively far more half-assed than NG 1 or 2, and at any point you have far fewer strategic choices. At some point I’d like to revisit this topic and examine the combos more scientifically. But let me ask you this: Have you beat either NG 1 or 2? 3 is shit so let’s just forget about that one. I find it surprising that anyone could believe DMC is deeper.

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  4. Chris Wagar July 14, 2016 / 4:25 am

    Uh, wow. I’ve heard Icycalm once say that DMC is just about rotating the moves you use, but I didn’t think anyone else believed that was all there was to it. Sure, you can do that, and that is an efficient way to build up style points, but first off, that doesn’t always combo, and second, you don’t always want to rotate moves like that. Especially in DMC4, where you have a lot more options with Dante at once than the 4 or so necessary to avoid staling the style meter. Like, just because rotating the moves builds style meter doesn’t necessarily mean you want to just rotate the moves. I have beaten NGS1 by the way, and done half of NGS2.

    The thing with DMC is, you don’t have many combo strings. You have a bunch of moves that you can use at any time. Every weapon usually has like 2 or 3 ground strings, but what makes it cool is that you have these moves you can access at any time, usually forward + attack, back + attack, and a modified version using a style, plus forward and back on the style too. Because you have all these moves you can pull out at any time, building combos in DMC is more a question of, “How can I get this move to fit into this one?” and “what other moves can I get this move to lead into?” Where building combos in Ninja Gaiden is more like, “Does this combo string launch at some point in it? Yes? Throw shuriken right then, and do a different combo string, or the same one again.”

    So then you get situations like someone using million stabs, which normally launches enemies away at the end of the move, then canceling it with royal guard before it completes, so they can do another million stabs like 5 times in a row. https://youtu.be/VrXRxyL6B90?t=153 In the air, you can use aerial rave with dante, but it has a natural ending to it which you can’t combo after. You can extend your combo here by switching to darkslayer style and hitting them once, but not twice because the second hit launches, and then switching back. Or with vergil, you can launch enemies, but time a summoned sword to hit them exactly after they’re launched, which halts their air velocity, so they’re not pushed too far away for your next move. You get situations where people literally fly through the air, never touching the ground as they fight enemies, purely through air dashes, teleports, and jump cancels.

    Here’s 3 combo videos for comparison in the different styles of play between these players:

    As for the range of moves in DMC4, you should find it across these pages:
    http://devilmaycry.wikia.com/wiki/Rebellion
    http://devilmaycry.wikia.com/wiki/Gilgamesh
    http://devilmaycry.wikia.com/wiki/Lucifer
    http://devilmaycry.wikia.com/wiki/Ebony_%26_Ivory
    http://devilmaycry.wikia.com/wiki/Coyote-A
    http://devilmaycry.wikia.com/wiki/Pandora
    http://devilmaycry.wikia.com/wiki/Trickster_Style
    http://devilmaycry.wikia.com/wiki/Royalguard_Style
    http://devilmaycry.wikia.com/wiki/Dark_Slayer_Style

    Rebellion: 14
    Gilgamesh: 13 (not counting how you can charge individual moves of the standard ground combos)
    Lucifer: 11
    E&I: 5
    Coyote-A: 6
    Pandora: 7
    Trickster: 5
    Royal Guard: 7
    Darkslayer: 4

    These add up to 72 individual moves. DMC3 has a lot more, but no switching, so I don’t think it can be counted as neatly. It also has more overlap between moves. I don’t think there’s really any repetition between these in DMC4, except that the ground chains can be kind of similar across weapons.

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    • treeghettox July 14, 2016 / 5:44 am

      C’mon now, nigga. Only half of SIGMA 2? You don’t have a 360? Neither do I. But I’m not a fucking occupational games journalist! Get yer ass a 360 and beat the original ya pussy-fart.

      You will also need some sort of external fan. The game literally achieves a better framerate with this. I’m not sure if newer 360’s have this problem, but you can’t afford to take the risk. On that note, if you don’t have a 360 because you’re broke, tough titty. Borrow one from a friend. Bunnyhop made the same excuse about not covering Demon’s Souls and I hated him for it as well.

      I lost an immense amount of respect for you at this moment. I assumed you beat the games so I didn’t ask you before. I now regret giving you the benefit of the doubt. I am holding you to a higher standard now. Beat the fucking game to earn your right to critique it.

      Of course, I acknowledge you can analyze a game effectively without actually beating it. But don’t you dare use that as a counter-argument to excuse your laziness (and/or incompetence?) Games journalists need to beat every single game they critique or otherwise EXPLICITLY STATE that they haven’t beaten it and therefore their word lacks authority. I also think they need to explicitly state which difficulty they beat it on. To a far lesser extent, it would be nice to get an exact list of what optional content/achievements they completed. This information needs to be transparent to both hold journalists to a higher standard and inform the reader how ignorant or informed the reviewer actually is.

      This is your day job. Show some pride. And beat Contra already, holy shit. If you applied yourself for a few hours you’d rapidly master it. This is far too influential of a game for you to have put off for so long. And I’m going to go out on a limb here and say you haven’t beaten Gradius. For shame, Chris.

      I was going to give you an ask.fm today challenging you to be less lazy and make more Youtube videos already. I made a Youtube video in under two days from scratch with no prior experience, including playing large portions of Metal Slug X perfectly and capturing the footage. Guess what? I also blazed chronic the entire time. It’s not that hard or time consuming; you’re just being a lazy sack a’ shit.

      You’re too smart and objective to be so obscure. Because of your fuckin’ laziness, games journalism and games are suffering. You need to grow the fuck up, get off your ass, and make a serious effort to expand your audience. I only found you by Googling Matthewmatosis. So, as far as the internet is concerned, you’re nothing more than a minuscule parasite clasping onto matosis’ nutsack. You’re better than that, Chris.

      Beat the fuckin’ games. And then make some goddamn videos already.

      Liked by 1 person

        • treeghettox July 14, 2016 / 4:19 pm

          Wow. Was expecting less of a chickenshit response. I was referring to NG2 and Contra.

          This ain’t about you not playing games I like. I really like Sonic Blast Man on the SNES and I’m not grilling you on that. Why? Because it’s not an important game. NG2 and Contra, on the other hand, are extremely important. Contra is ridiculously influential and NG2 pushed the boundaries of the 3D brawler genre. Not beating these games is like a film critic that’s never seen Goodfellas or Star Wars.

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          • Chris Wagar July 14, 2016 / 4:59 pm

            I’m aware of this need to play games that are influential. It’s why I have a priority list of games that I’ve mentioned occasionally. I know there are essential games that I haven’t beaten, but I have not gotten around to them yet. The list is very big, and I try to tackle new games as well, and consume other media, as well as go out to tournaments, and have a social life and job.

            It’s a lot harder to play so many games than their movie equivalents because they take up more time and cost more money to get the right systems to play them. Especially replaying on harder difficulties.

            You do not need to be so harsh with me. I will finish more games, and produce more content, but it is going to take time. I’ve tried binging on games before and I generally get burnt out if I try too hard for too long. After Ratchet and Clank 2, I didn’t want to go on to try Ratchet 3 at all, and I dropped Jak 2 midway through because I couldn’t keep up momentum with that either (was playing all these games in a similar timeframe).

            I made my statement based on Ninja Gaiden Sigma 1, which is not significantly changed in its core systems from the original, and many of the enemy placements were changed to be harder in many sections, while the ones in congruence with water running or wall running were changed to be made easier generally. I have watched videos of NG2, apart from having more weapons than the original and slightly different controls for some basic actions, it’s a very similar game.

            I thought it was a fair extrapolation to make an argument about the depth of the game based on the core systems, having only played the first game, because those systems did not change in a significant way to the second game, and even to the inferior remake.

            DMC allows more ready access to individual moves, and more ways to interrupt moves with other ones, thus there is more interaction between elements, as per my 4th rule of thumb criteria for depth. I’d also personally say the moves are more differentiated, there is a reason to use all of them and none of them totally overlap. This is a bias towards the moveset design, the enemy design in the NG games is clearly fantastic, but I tend to focus on player character mechanics first because it is simply how I lean.

            If my claim is incorrect, if I’m misinformed, I would appreciate if you’d make a case for that. I’ll get around to playing everything eventually. I don’t need you telling me how I’m a parasite as far as google is concerned, or how you’ve lost respect for me, or saying I have no right to make a critique here. Not playing all the games in question hurts my authority insomuch as I might not have all the knowledge required to make a suitable argument, or the knowledge I do have may be incorrect. If this is the case, you can point out how my argument is wrong, and that is fine.

            I don’t appreciate the hostility, even if it comes out of a place of respect for me, and a desire to see me succeed. This isn’t a job. I don’t put in a certain amount of hours for this every day. I do this when I feel like it. Getting mad at me is not going to make me willing to bend over backwards for you. The majority of gamers have backlogs they do not finish, and I am no different.

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            • treeghettox July 14, 2016 / 8:17 pm

              No shit to the first two paragraphs. We don’t play games because they’re easy. If we were lesser people we’d be into films rather than games. “It’s too hard” has no fucking place in games journalism whatsoever. I thought you believed that, too. I hope you still do, and this is just a knee-jerk attempt to make yourself feel better.

              You need to stop being such a hypocritical little queef and put your money where your mouth is. You can’t call out other journalists for being lazy and incompetent and then try to fucking tell me that watching footage of a game is sufficient to critique it. You knew what you were doing when you didn’t explicitly state you haven’t beaten the game. You were trying to alleviate your responsibility and dismiss me without putting in the work or acknowledging that you lack sufficient experience. GAMES JOURNALISTS NEED TO BE HELD TO A HIGHER STANDARD. That includes you. It ain’t so easy when the shoe’s on the other foot, is it?

              Listen, I think your argument about DMC is solid and I haven’t played enough of them to dismiss it. I appreciate the time and thought you put into your critique of DMC. On the other hand, it’s shameful that you lack the knowledge to accurately critique Ninja Gaiden. I already proved that you didn’t know about weapon switching. What else don’t you know about? By the way, Sigma 2 removed a significant number of techniques and enemies. Again, it’s not hard to get your hands on a 360. I know your ass has friends that could loan you one. Fuck you for trying to fight me on that point.

              Re-read that final paragraph you just wrote. It should make you sick to your stomach to read that. Yes, CritPoints isn’t your job, but being a games journalist is. You should have more pride in your field than this, even if you aren’t getting paid for it. Fuck, I never received a dime for talking about games and I make it a point to either beat a game or go way out of my way to point out my limited experience if I talk about it. I’ve beaten plenty of games I fuckin’ DESPISE (Last of Us, Portal) just so I could speak on them from experience. Not once did I ever think that watching footage was good enough. And this is just to random people in real life.

              Nigga, you play video games for a living. Your job is fuckin’ easy.

              Chris, you’re just like every other chickenshit effeminate nerd on the planet. You might be able to dish it out, but you sure can’t take it. Deep down, you know I’m right, but unfortunately right now your laziness and desire to salvage your self-esteem are outclassing your professional pride.

              I’m not saying “drop whatever the fuck you’re doing and beat these games right now.” I did, however, expect you to acknowledge in some way that you fucked up here. At the very least, admit that it was wrong for you to not be transparent about how little you’ve played NG2. As for Contra, that’s still shameful, but at least you were honest about it. And looks like my guess about Gradius was right on the money, huh? Have you even played the first stage? I understand you don’t give a shit about shmups; most crackers don’t. But it is objectively one of the most influential games of all time and it’s not very hard or long.

              Here’s how I operate: when I care about somebody, I’m critical as fuck (and harsh) to force them to improve. When I write somebody off, I just tell them what they want to hear and more or less ignore them. I still care about you, Chris. You’re the closest thing I’ve ever seen to a games journalist that actually knows what the fuck they talk about. But both you and I know there’s room for improvement. You’re going to have to suffer through serious criticism like this if you really want to make a name for yourself. And you know that you’re not going to improve by making bullshit excuses for yourself like above.

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              • Chris Wagar July 14, 2016 / 8:42 pm

                “Nigga, you play video games for a living. Your job is fuckin’ easy.”

                No, I literally do not. I’ve never been paid for a single thing I’ve written. I have a day job. I am a nobody, I am just a fan. I have no authority except that what I say is right or wrong. My only authority is what you choose to grant me and what I can convince you of.

                To that end, you’re right that it’s bad that I haven’t played ninja gaiden 2. I’ll fess up. My priority list is literally a list of games I know I should play to not be considered a fraud. That’s why I haven’t published it, because I don’t want people to know what’s still left.

                I know I’m weak, but please trust that I will get stronger. I have no plan to shirk this, but I am still only human. I have not at any point in this conversation said I’d not play NG2 at some point in the future. It was always the plan, but I cannot play it now, and this conversation regrettably happened now.

                I’m sorry.

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                • Chris Wagar July 14, 2016 / 8:49 pm

                  Also I am currently sorting through a crisis with my evo trip.

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                  • treeghettox July 15, 2016 / 5:13 am

                    I assumed you made money writing for GYP. In light of this, my harshness was a bit much.

                    As soon as you get paid, though, you can expect more of this shit if I spot an inconsistency. Keep in mind I don’t talk to Bunnyhop this way. I enjoy his videos but I consider him to be entertainment moreso than serious game critique.

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                    • Chris Wagar July 15, 2016 / 7:00 am

                      GYP never made any money. We ran no ads, nobody on the site was paid. It was strictly a volunteer effort, because it was formed to combat the evils of clickbait and native advertising. This ultimately proved its undoing, as well as mismanagement from the founder.

                      Digifira had the potential for me to get paid if the site hit it big, but I will be withdrawing from that site quietly due to Mark stepping down from it and I was literally only there because Mark wanted help.

                      This is not my job, it is not technically my duty, though I admit I think of it that way sometimes, but I also know I cannot accomplish everything I want with it.

                      I’ve been sitting in an airport for about 10 hours, I beat contra about 5 hours ago. Cool.

                      I don’t need shit from you. I am working to play a ton of games. I cannot get that done immediately or even in a reasonable time frame, because it’s a huge task.

                      I don’t expect as much from reviewers as I expect from myself. I want to be an expert among experts because I want to know everything and earn as much authority as I can. I don’t care if a reviewer isn’t an expert on a game and all the games around it. I care that their analytical methods are good. I cannot ask as much from them as I ask of myself. Don’t take my attempt to make an extrapolatory argument when I have a fair amount of experience in games close to the game I’m talking about, within the same series, as a sign that I’m weak or that I’ll give up.

                      Just please don’t insult me that way. I’m doing the best I can, and I’m absolutely not giving up.

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  5. treeghettox July 15, 2016 / 4:22 pm

    Final word, I promise:

    Your arguments about Ninja Gaiden are fairly accurate. The reason I read your site every day is because you challenge me to rethink opinions I’ve taken for granted as gospel. Before talking to you, I never would have considered DMC has shit on NG outside of perhaps a more important mission rank system. You are literally one of the only people that can change my mind on something because you actually put in the work. I mean, fuck, you counted all the moves in DMC4. Nobody does that shit.

    I regained most of my lost respect now that I know you never got paid. You are literally better than “chucklefucks” (as you say) who make money to spout ignorant non-objective bullshit about games that make me want to suplex their shitty brains into mush. Perhaps you can recognize your extreme nature in me; it’s not good enough for you to be better than everybody else; you need to be as good as YOU possibly can. It’s clear you feel this way too, and that’s why I believe in you.

    Really, the only way you seriously fucked up was by not being clear from the get-go that you didn’t beat NG2. Which is strange, because you usually do that with other games. Perhaps you feared this very retribution because NG fans are violently passionate. Of course it’s fine you haven’t beaten every important game in existence; I was furious that you were doing the same shit that other monkeys do as it momentarily grounded my astronomical opinion of you. Just so you know, I bring up your name and arguments daily when I shoot the shit about games. I talk about Matosis or Bunnyhop only briefly when they make a video (and mostly it’s “he thought that part was hard? Really?!”)

    I don’t apologize for what I said, but I do apologize for making the bonehead mistake that you get paid to do this. I’m pretty sure you mentioned that isn’t the case somewhere. I don’t think this exchange is regrettable; on the contrary, I haven’t been this verbally engaged in years. And I believe the insane intensity and hatred I dropped on you (again, erroneously) will nevertheless be a net positive. It was unexpected and unexpectedly harsh, which is exactly what you need to be accustomed to when you have an internet presence. If I took a chunk outta you, I’m sure it will grow back stronger.

    Good luck at EVO. And I promise I’ll keep my sharp tongue sheathed from now on.

    Like

    • Chris Wagar July 23, 2016 / 3:09 am

      Thank you, I just wish it hadn’t happened then, I had a good trip to EVO overall, but performed poorly in bracket due to all sorts of shenanigans with the planes and low sleep. The antagonism was not helpful as I was sorting out my flight.

      DMC3 has more moves total than DMC4, because it has more weapons and styles, and the styles have more options, some were outright removed from DMC4. DMC4 just has more simultaneously, which was rectified recently with the style switcher in DMC3. The weapon switcher is coming I hear, which will make DMC3 great, except for the simpler enemies. Can’t win ’em all.

      I personally consider God Hand the best 3d action game in the canon just because it has the best balance of moves to enemies and no significant fuckups. DMC is where I’d like the character movesets to be, Ninja Gaiden is where I’d like the enemy aggression to be (though diversity in function could use a little work).

      Like

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