Wednesday, June 29, 2011

"Saving" the day?

Considering it's been a couple of weeks since I've posted anything new to the blog (sorry guys), I was getting myself all geared up to write some deep, thought provoking, insightful post into the my world.  THEN I just got ticked at a silly little issue and decided to rant instead.  The issue? Why the hell is everyone up in arms over Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D inability to reset a player's saved data?  I've seen gamers declaring their utter disgust at Capcom over this matter that you'd almost think the company had become a new member of the "Axis of Evil".  I mean, seriously, people. Is this really enough of an issue to get up in arms about?

Okay, in case you missed what all the hubbub is about, here's a quick rundown ...

Since before the release of the 3DS, Capcom has been hyped up bringing the Resident Evil series to the 3DS, starting with Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D.  If you've played either RE 4 or RE 5, you're probably already familiar with the concept behind The Mercenaries, as it's already been included as an unlockable minigame in both in both of those titles.  Basically, it's a quick run-and-gun race against the clock to kill as many zombies as possible before a timer runs out.  Bringing that experience to the 3DS handheld, Capcom added more characters, more customization, more maps, local and online play, and oh yeah ... a demo of Resident Evil: Revelations.  Still, people seem to be hung up on the fact that in the instruction manual for the game, it says "Saved data on this software cannot be reset" ... meaning that if you buy the game used, you're stuck with whatever progress the previous owner had completed before trading the game in.  To which I respond, "And the problem with this IS ... ?"

Here's why I don't understand what's got a few vocal gamers so pissed off.  If this had bee some sort of deep, moving RPG and you couldn't restart the game from the beginning to relive the experience, I might be upset.  If there was some key element that might have been missed and the game left you with no way to go back and rectify the issue, I might be upset.  But the thing is, Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D is NOT a role-playing game.  It doesn't even have a story.  Here's the game in a nutshell:

  1. Pick a character
  2. Pick a few skills and weapons
  3. Pick a mission (yes, folks, every mission IS replayable)
  4. Kill as many zombies as you can before time runs out
  5. Beat your high score and MAYBE unlock more goodies
  6. Wash. Rinse. Repeat.
Now, I'm not saying the game isn't any fun.  Hell, I've had a blast with it, personally. And the Duo (co-op) play is fun too. Sure, it's not perfect, but it's high on my 3DS list right now.  But having said that, at its core, Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D is basically an arcade experience in the palm of your hand.  And all this bitching and moaning about being stuck with your (or if you buy it used, someone else's) save data seems pretty ridiculous.  After all, WHAT exactly, are you missing out on?  The WORST case scenario for someone who picks the game up used is that, horror of horrors, you get a copy with stuff already unlocked and a handful of high scores for you to try and beat.

That's it?  That's what people are yelling about?  Hell, I know people who will go out of their WAY to find a used game that already has content unlocked ... *cough* Pokemon *cough*.  I liken it to the days of yore (Read: the '80s) when I used to spend my free time camped out in the local arcade, feeding the electronic beasts a steady diet of quarters cashed in from my weekly allowance.  If someone beat my high score, I kept playing until I earned my way back up to the leaderboard.  I damn sure didn't complain to the owner and expect him to let me unplug the machines and reset everything just to soothe my bruised ego.

When all is said and done, does it really matter that you can't reset the saved data in Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D?  Does it actually change the experience in any way, shape, or form?  If so, I don't see how.  Sure, if you buy the game used, you might not get that fleeting moment of accomplishment from earning a medal or unlockable that someone who owned the game before you might have.  But if that's something important to you, then just buy the damn thing new and do it all yourself.

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