Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Car Wars

I don't want a car game where the cars all got laser turrets mounted to the roof and James Bond Oil Slick Dispensers sticking out of their butts.

Nope, I always thought that stuff was dorked out, even though we used to play Interstate 76 a lot, it was in spite of that goofy looking weapon crap, and not because of it.

We already had games where we were guys running around with lasers and missiles and shields and armor and all that, y'know, what we didn't have was a cool car game that we could play on the LAN.

So mostly we just seemed to silently agree to ignore the stupid weapons and we drove around and tried to do the most spectacular stunts while ramming the hell out of each other back in those early Lan Party days.

The thing I remember the most about Interstate 76 is the way they did the suspensions on all the cars perfectly, y'know?

I mean, you could Rock the Boat by rolling the steering wheel back and forth a little heh.

Yah, see, we played that Demolition Derby game way the hell more than we ever wasted our arcade tokens on that crappy Spy Hunter game, I dunno how Spy Hunter ever made it into Popular Culture, aside from the possibility that it was one of the few games that were hanging out at the arcade around the time when all the cameras were there to witness the Pac Man Fever heh.

Spy Hunter stunk, man.

And Need for Speed, that was another one we played a lot, and we always played it with the Cop Chase thing turned on, 'cause otherwise yer just doing laps without watching cars go flying off the road and smashing into billboards and stuff, and that'd put me right to sleep, which is why I'd never play anything like Motor City Online.

And the way we always played Grand Theft Auto (having to take turns, ugh) was by trying to create and survive the most spectacular five alarm mess possible.

So this James Bond mobile weapon platform thing really seems to miss the whole point of making a car game, imho.

And if I was gonna make a game with car fights, it wouldn't be anything like that.

Nope, well, maybe I'd have a dune buggy with a harpoon gun on a turret, and a steel cable attached, 'cause that has all the makings of a hilariously spectacular car crash, no matter what it hits with that harpoon, but that's about it.

Yah, I mean, if you ain't got the technology to do stuff like guys jumping from vehicle to vehicle, and trying to strangle a guy while he's driving, or shotgun fights between passengers, then the only really cool car fight junk you can do is high speed Car Chases where the cars try to ram other off the road, or Running the Gauntlet (which is where the Heavy Mass Driver Vehicles like Semis Shine heh).

Both of which Autoassault sorta failed to deliver on, even though it was a lot of fun in other ways.

Well, you do need a really huge map and an extremely long stretch of road (or a good trick) to do high speed car chases and stuff that ain't over in like twenty seconds.

And a Demolition Derby thing where the vehicles don't get all beat to hell and just suddenly explode seems kinda like a rip-off, yknow?

Yah, this Being a Car thing is no good, man, a Car should be like a Town Bike, something you jump into, and jump out of, after aiming it into a head-on collision with something that'll explode all awesome.

And this crap about a guy on foot being screwed against a guy in a car is so lame.

You ever seen a dude stuck sitting in a car fight a guy standing outside of a car?

Yah, it ain't pretty.

And that's unarmed, I mean, if the guy on foot has a gun, or a ballpeen hammer or a Tire Rim or something, then the dude in the car had better be using that car to drive away as fast as he possibly can from that situation, 'cause he's the frickin' definition of sitting duck, man.

I do want a game where my dude can crash cars around and try not to get killed on a motorcycle and stuff, and there's a lot of fun stuff you can do with that, I mean, the Car Chase through the Post Apocalyptic Playground With Your Buddy Riding Shotgun Literally takes the Cheesy Ass Fed Ex Mission to a whole 'nother level.

But we ain't really been doing any of it yet.

Sure, welding cow-killers on the front of the Last of the V10s and souping it up and giving it cherry paintjobs and fuzzy dice and all that Virtual Status Symbol stuff is cool and everything, but its what it does when it starts to move and crash into stuff and catch on fire and explode that really matters, and that Avatar Standing Around In Town Flexing His E-Penis stuff really gets in the way of that.

You wanna get attached to a car like that, you need a pet dog (or a snake) to guard it, and a good booby-trap, and at some point yer definitely gonna need a tow-truck and a pit crew with thousands of dollars in tools and parts, or you'll end up driving a mulecart with a pet monkey on yer shoulder.

I think we oughta be treating that junk like the Town Bike, man, the same way you'd treat a Rental Car.

You could be having a lot more fun wrecking yer mom's Mini-Van than taking care of it.

Damn thing runs out of gas, steal a new one.

And who cares about the mess in a Post Apocalyptic Playground, making a gigantic smoldering mess is the whole fun of having a Post Apocalyptic Playground in the first place.

And you can always just let the Paramilitary Guys clean it up.

Of course, there is the Holy Grail of Post Apocalyptic Transportation to think about, the Post Apocalyptic Super Van, the Ultimate In Luxury Class Mobile Fortresses and Post Apocalyptic Recreational Vehicles, but its actually designed for Hostile Environment Exploration, and Family Outings where you need to roll over a sea of starving zombies to get to where yer going, and not Car Fights, really.

That stuff can be fun too, though.

But you do need to be able to get out of your car, y'know.

Yah, and not just in town, man.

Yah, it'd be like making a fantasy MMO where you were stuck looking at everything from the back of a horse all the time.

There's a lot of super entertaining stuff you can do with cars, y'know, but they're always goanna be kinda secondary to whatever is going on.

Their main purpose is always gonna be to get Gasmask Guy, and his buddy, the Purple Mohawk Guy With the Silver Lipstick and the Meat Cleaver, from Point A to Point B, with our without a ton of awesome special effects and excitement, depending on what yer trying to accomplish, y'know, there'd be times that maybe you'd want to make them feel like they've moving through a desolate area.

That's how they were used mostly in the Fallout Games (besides being a place a where we could stash inventory stuff like a bank).

And it was a pain to have to repair all our vehicles if they came under fire in Fallout Tactics, y'know, so I usually left them at the corner of the map and explored ahead on foot 'cause they were too expensive to risk, y'know, humans are kinda rubbery and durable and they regenerate all by themselves when they get shot up heh.

And so you still need cool dungeons to explore up close and personal on foot (like abandoned towns with shopping malls and airports and parking lots and Spooky Research Labs and instances like the Classic Thing where you and a bunch of buddies try to survive the night in an old house under a siege of zombies), mebbe some Lord of the Flies City Building and Survival Junk (which is one of the things that would really work great in a Apocalypse game) and all that other good stuff.

I think you need all that junk a lot more than you need cool car fights, really, even in a Road Warrior Online Type Game.

Its just like that Pirate Ship game, y'know, Pirate Ships are cool and everything (not anywhere near as cool as flaming punkrock muscle car crashes at two hundred miles an hour heh), but I don't wanna be one.

Still, a Pirate Game without Pirate Ships wouldn't be too hot either.


Sundry Chicken said...

Oh, Car Wars... and the days of paper tokens for trikes, bikes, cars and trucks who are all slathered in plastic and steel armors. Couple of peds cracking out the recoilless on a tripod and sending innocent vehicles to the scrap heap. Rollin honest to god 6D old-school style.

Another memory cross-linked and consumed by the digital monster and his marketing slave handlers.

Really too bad the original ideas and games rarely bubble up anymore. Huzzah to our post-recycling culture.

Ole Bald Angus the Monk said...

Yah me and my little brother used to play Car Wars.

Heck, Star Frontiers had a lot of cool vehicle stuff innit, post apocalyptic super vans with a motor for every wheel and those kickass hovercycles that were a hilarious pain to have proper hillbilly car chases and fights with 'cause of the Drift Rules.

I remember my otherwise good-for-nothing rich disco uncle that used to tell us that he had gatling guns mounted under the hood of his car that could pop out and blow people away if he pressed a button, y'know, when we were little kids, and I dunno how many car rides he had to sit through after that while me and my little brother begged him to press the button and blow this person or that person up, but it was a LOT, and I'm sure we made him wish he'd never said anything about it ahaha.

But then that movie Megaforce came out, y'know, with the motorcycle that shot missiles, and that was the end of all THAT stuff.

There's a part of me that says that guys that feel like they need to add missiles to cars don't actually see what's so cool about cars in the first place.

Y'know, they're like fans of missiles, coming along, slapping missiles on everything they don't understand as if it was some kinda catsup that'll make it taste better.

But it just makes everything taste like MISSILES.

Cars don't NEED missiles to be cool, man.

But I guess you MISSILE guys just can't appreciate the subtle NASCAR hillbilly awesomeness of BEING a missile, with all the high speed car crashes and daisy dukes and shit AHAHA.