This Time YOU'RE The Hapless Idiot
May 7, 2013 5:03 AM   Subscribe

Timely! I was just lamenting the fact that the old BioShock Infinite post closed to new comments less than a day before unSane posted the new BI-inspired MeFi Music Challenge, covering songs in the style of an earlier era. Hopefully more people will see it now -- I can't wait to see what comes out of it!
posted by Rhaomi at 5:17 AM on May 7, 2013

Funny how she wasn't complaining when Booker was running around the beach...
posted by Smart Dalek at 5:30 AM on May 7, 2013

But I was the hapless idiot in the first place.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 5:31 AM on May 7, 2013

Man, I really need to take some time to finish this game... I think I'm probably about 2/3 of the way through but haven't had time to pick it back up recently. So many links I want to click, but I've managed to somehow avoid any major spoilers so far and I'd really like to keep that streak alive until I finish it. Luckily, there's a lot of rain in the forecast this weekend!
posted by Roommate at 5:52 AM on May 7, 2013

The part where he runs towards the bad guys like a scared and hapless idiot - hilarious.

posted by Foci for Analysis at 6:09 AM on May 7, 2013

My reaction to this video in real time;

Hmmm heh ...hehe he he hen...hehe ahahaha ha aha aha aha AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

Also, music challenge? Sweet fanny awesome. I've been finding myself listening to the alternate universe soundtrack more than I'd healthy lately (it's good music for picking out a suitable buttonelle okay?)
posted by The Whelk at 6:28 AM on May 7, 2013 [2 favorites]

Also, it's in the end credits , but super sweet - Elizabeth And Booker's actors sing Will The Circle Be Unbroken
posted by The Whelk at 7:03 AM on May 7, 2013 [1 favorite]

Also, it's in the end credits , but super sweet - Elizabeth And Booker's actors sing Will The Circle Be Unbroken

You can actually find it in the game proper - down in a basement there's a guitar; you can interact with it; Booker takes a seat and plays, and Elizabeth sings. They do the song, and it's a magnificent quiet and soft moment in the midst of all that hellish gunfire, and then... put down the guitar, take up your rifle and get back to the slaughter.
posted by Tomorrowful at 7:28 AM on May 7, 2013 [1 favorite]

You can actually find it in the game proper - down in a basement there's a guitar; you can interact with it; Booker takes a seat and plays, and Elizabeth sings.

The director's commentary after they sing that is pretty great; saying that, they're awesome, but too professional. In-game, this is two people who barely know each other trying to find each others' rhythm in the first few bars.

If you rewatch that scene, it's surprising how well that works.
posted by mhoye at 7:50 AM on May 7, 2013 [1 favorite]

Would someone be willing to explain that to me? I had no idea what that was or what was going on.
posted by kyrademon at 8:18 AM on May 7, 2013


SPOILERS!!!!!!!! (Don't look, Roomate)

I'm seeing the ending in a whole new light now. She's just doing what we wish we could do to every idiot subject of escort missions.
posted by bibliowench at 8:26 AM on May 7, 2013

Kyrademon, it's video of someone playing Bioshock: Infinite. In the real game, the non-player-character (Elizabeth) who the player is escorting, is sometimes helpful, sometimes frustrating, because she's a computer-controlled character whose scripting is only partially successful at mimicking a real person.

In the video they've overdubbed Elizabeth's voice to make it sound like she's a real person frustrated with the player, whose actions are an amusing mix of stuff that a real player in the game does that ought to be exasperating to Elizabeth if she were a real person, and the sort of ineptness in combat (rushing stupidly at the enemy forces) that you sometimes see and get frustrated with in a computer-controlled non-player companion character. (Or alternately you can imagine it as the exasperation Elizabeth ought to show when the game is played by someone who sucks at first-person shooters.)
posted by straight at 8:29 AM on May 7, 2013 [1 favorite]

> Would someone be willing to explain that to me?

Let me break this down for you one time. (Some early-game spoilers; no ending spoilers.)

In the recent vidjagame -- and darling of critics -- Bioshock Infinite, the character you control is one Bryce Booker DeWitt.

Your mission, as it is told to you in the opening scenes of the game, is to rescue the young lady Elizabeth from captivity in a breathtaking jazz-age floating city. Elizabeth is the young lady speaking in the video.

In the actual game, Elizabeth can't help you fight, but she sticks to cover (so effectively you never have to worry about her being hurt), and she can sometimes find helpful items like first-aid kits and ammunition, and throw them to you. If you linger in an area, she may make suggestions about what to do next, or point out things you missed.

The video shows real (albeit deliberately incompetant) gameplay. The humor lies in the audio -- Elizabeth is given new lines where she expresses frustration at, basically, Booker being the noobiest noob to ever noob out of noob-town.

This, in contrast to the original Elizabeth, who is a stranger to violence, and actually kind of apalled at how good Booker is at it.
posted by sourcequench at 8:34 AM on May 7, 2013

The the thing that made this funny to me, and why I thought it worth posting, is that it highlights one way in which "Bioshock: Infinite" is sort of subverting a common expectation about video games: that "escort missions" will inevitably suck.

For those reading who aren't gamers: an "escort mission" is an element of a video game in which you, as the player, are asked to accompany a character who is controlled by the game from one location to another, protecting them from harm during the trip. That harm is coming other characters, also controlled by the game. Escort missions in general are massively irritation because of bad AI implementations. The character that you're supposed to be protecting will often behave very stupidly, not because stupid behavior is an element of their characterization, but because the AI is making inappropriate path choices, or whatever.

"Bioshock: Infinite" is sort of funny in light of this, in a way that resonates with me because (a) I hate escort missions, even in games that I really like, and (b) I am really, really not good at "Bioshock: Infinite". The joke is that the game is essentially one very long escort mission...but in this case, you, the player, are the dumbass being escorted.
posted by Ipsifendus at 8:48 AM on May 7, 2013 [3 favorites]

Only one thing I'd add to sourcequench's summary - in first person shooters, there are sometimes segments where the player is expected to escort an AI controlled person and protect them from natural hazards. These 'escort missions' are universally reviled, as far as I can tell, because success relies on a stupid AI that will often fail. Bioshock: Infinite doesn't count as an escort mission, because Elizabeth cannot cause your failure (as far as I noticed anyway).

I have seen escort missions that work, in other games, but it usually requires the thing being protected having enough hit points to survive about ten minutes of direct fire from the enemy. less than that and you're going to get angry players.
posted by YAMWAK at 8:48 AM on May 7, 2013

In the last B:I thread, someone linked to a review (by Tim Rogers, I think?) that speculated that in an earlier version of the game, Elizabeth could be injured, and so the game was just a long escort mission. I don't know if it's true or not, but if it were, that would quite possibly be the worst, most frustrating game anyone ever designed ever.

ICO is, in my opinion, the √Čvariste Galois of game-long escort missions: It poses the problem, then completely solves it, so no further work is needed. Hopefully one day the escort mission will go to whatever mausoleum of Bad Game Mechanics the text adventure labryinth and cat-hair mustache are slowly rotting in.
posted by Elementary Penguin at 9:49 AM on May 7, 2013

the √Čvariste Galois of game-long escort missions

You've gotten pretty comfortable 'round here, ain't ya?
posted by benito.strauss at 11:49 AM on May 7, 2013 [5 favorites]

Hey, it's finals week and I'm a little giddy. Give me a break.
posted by Elementary Penguin at 5:29 PM on May 7, 2013 [1 favorite]

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