the resigned gamer, everything I hate about the thing I love the most

Just Cause: Letter to a John

Posted by Sir Cucumber at 8:21 AM on Wednesday, July 2, 2008

sir cucumber's bitter corner, the resigned gamer

How is it that a highly trained covert operative can hoist himself out of the driver’s seat and onto the roof of a moving car, launch into the air with a magic retractable parachute, leap onto the roof of another moving car, squeeze through the window into the driver’s lap, open the door, hurl them out in the road and take the wheel without so much as drifting into the other lane, yet it’s beyond him to perform a drive-by?

Unidad de disparo? No lo entiendo.

What is the School of the Americas coming to? They teach torture, but not basic street survival skills? Where’s the accountability?

And I won’t even get into the grabbing of in-flight helicopter and plane tails. Yes, Rico, we’re all very impressed, but what about the basics? You know, like, atmosphere? Exploration? Agency? Consequences? Fun? Your fictional South American country is the size of three San Andreas, and yes, it is very pretty, but you’ve. got. nothing. to. do. here. You latin lovers are all the same: all flash and no fuck.

Tengo una máquina voladora!

Shit, we can’t even talk about politics! You don’t know the first thing about this “El Presidente” you’re trying to overthrow, let alone these pussy ass guerillas you keep bailing out, and you know what? I don’t care. I’m more concerned that you can’t keep it up for two lousy minutes. That spurt of fumbling diddly might get you through your plot-related missions, but it’s never gonna satisfy me.

Maybe you’d be a better man if someone had ever challenged you. If those three helicopters chasing you through the monotonous, mosquito-free jungle might have ever so much as nicked you with their blazing machine guns; if you hadn’t had airlifted agency dirt bikes and dune buggies at your beck and call; if you hadn’t been born with smooth almond skin, luscious black curls, mid-mission checkpoints and regenerating health.

I could never love a man who is constantly trying to be something he’s not. You think a little faux non-linearity and carjacking is all it takes to make you gangsta? I’ve worked with CJ Johnson, sir, and believe me, you are no CJ Johnson. You’re not even Ricky Martin.

And your one attribute I want so much to justify this fling is also the nail in your coffin: calling helicopter extractions to your next mission? I don’t know whether to respect you for acknowledging the mundanity of traversing your in-game world, or to resent you for selling it to me at all. We’re through, Rico. Don’t call.

Una triste. Yo lo tiene.