History YMMV / SpecOpsTheLine

19th May '16 11:53:29 AM tiny260
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* CriticalDissonance: Critics, by and large, were impressed with the game's story and themes (if generally finding the gameplay decidedly lacklustre - neither noticeably good nor bad), but it sold very poorly. Players who did pick up the game were divided - one camp thinks it's brilliant for opening questions that many other games conspicuously fail to acknowledge about simulated violence, power fantasies, morality, and other assumptions that come part and parcel with the genre, in the frame of an affecting and stark character study - [[https://gumroad.com/l/fsdz enough that a critical examination supportive of the game was written]]. A second finds it pretentious, hypocritical, self-righteous about imaginary violence, and too flawed in itself to be making any criticisms (especially in relation to criticism leveled at violence of the player, while being violent itself like the White Phosphorus incident). It was enough to spawn two games mocking Spec Ops' morality play: [[http://tinysubversions.com/videogamemoralityplay/ Video Game Morality Play]] and [[http://tinysubversions.com/game/ywhtwt/ You Were Hallucinating The Whole Time]]. A third camp didn't care about the story and dismissed it as yet another shooter set in the tired modern military genre, with mediocre cover-based gameplay.* CryForTheDevil: The game welcomes you to empathize with [[spoiler:Walker himself]], and ultimately lets you decide whether or not he's redeemable.

to:

* CriticalDissonance: Critics, by and large, were impressed with the game's story and themes (if generally finding the gameplay decidedly lacklustre - neither noticeably good nor bad), but it sold very poorly. Players who did pick up the game were divided - one camp thinks it's brilliant for opening questions that many other games conspicuously fail to acknowledge about simulated violence, power fantasies, morality, and other assumptions that come part and parcel with the genre, in the frame of an affecting and stark character study - [[https://gumroad.com/l/fsdz enough that a critical examination supportive of the game was written]]. A second finds it pretentious, hypocritical, self-righteous about imaginary violence, and too flawed in itself to be making any criticisms (especially in relation to criticism leveled at violence of the player, while being violent itself like the White Phosphorus incident). It was enough to spawn two games mocking Spec Ops' morality play: [[http://tinysubversions.com/videogamemoralityplay/ Video Game Morality Play]] and [[http://tinysubversions.com/game/ywhtwt/ You Were Hallucinating The Whole Time]]. A third camp didn't care about the story and dismissed it as yet another shooter set in the tired modern military genre, with mediocre cover-based gameplay.gameplay.
* CryForTheDevil: The game welcomes you to empathize with [[spoiler:Walker himself]], and ultimately lets you decide whether or not he's redeemable.
10th May '16 1:05:40 PM Berrenta
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* ItGetsBetter: The early parts of the game (presumably intentionally) seem like a generic, somewhat unpolished, modern military shooter. As it progresses, the story begins to play with and subvert the expected tropes, creating a more engaging experience. [[FromBadToWorse "Better" probably isn't the right word to describe the direction the plot takes, though.]]


Added DiffLines:

* SlowPacedBeginning: The early parts of the game (presumably intentionally) seem like a generic, somewhat unpolished, modern military shooter. As it progresses, the story begins to play with and subvert the expected tropes, creating a more engaging experience.
4th May '16 2:11:30 PM SuckerPerpetrator
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* LoveItOrHateIt: There's very little middle ground between "a deep examination of violent games, violence in media, and player involvement" and "shallow, hypocritical, moralizing piece of garbage that insults players for taking the only path offered by the game". The middle ground sees the game as being an immersive dramatic work that is about experiencing a darker side of human nature rather than a simple putdown of the genre.

to:

* LoveItOrHateIt: There's very little middle ground between "a deep examination and necessary condemnation of violent games, violence in media, and player involvement" and "shallow, hypocritical, moralizing piece of garbage that insults players for taking the only path offered by the game". The middle ground sees the game as being an immersive dramatic work that is about experiencing a darker side of human nature rather than a simple putdown of the genre.
4th May '16 5:24:27 AM JulianLapostat
Is there an issue? Send a Message


** Writer Walt Williams is not terribly keen on the game being described as an "anti-war" video game: he has stated that his primary intention was to create a narrative which asked players to question [[DeconstructionGame why they play shooters in the first place]], and the WarIsHell aspect of the game came about largely as a necessary consequence of this rather than out of any special desire to attack war in its own right.
*** Similarly to the above, the game has often been interpreted as a critique of [[AmericaSavesTheDay American military interventionism]].
** There's also one common thread running throughout Walker's various blunders in-game - every instance where things went pear-shaped because of his actions, it happened when he acted with only partial information. The mortars? [[spoiler: He didn't scout the area thoroughly enough to find the civilians]]. The aquarium? [[spoiler: He didn't ask any hard questions about why the CIA was there, instead trusting that they were on the level]]. Any of which can happen in an actual warzone.
*** And [[PoorCommunicationKills the biggest miscommunication]] happened at the very beginning, when he and his group were fired upon by other US soldiers believing that Delta Squad [[spoiler: was working with the CIA]]. Had either side simply tried talking to the other, [[CouldHaveAvoidedThisPlot the entirety of the game could have been averted]].

to:

** Writer Walt Williams is not terribly keen on the game being described as an "anti-war" video game: he has stated that his primary intention was to create a narrative which asked players to question [[DeconstructionGame why they play shooters in the first place]], and the WarIsHell aspect of the game came about largely as a necessary consequence of this rather than out of any special desire to attack war in its own right.
*** Similarly to the above, the
right. The game grapples with how such a life and state of being would be one of constant fear, endless violence and bloodshed which would take a toll on any individual's sanity.
** The
game has often been interpreted as a critique of [[AmericaSavesTheDay American military interventionism]].
interventionism]] or at least the mentality of "good guys saving the world" that is used to justify such actions.
** There's also one common thread running throughout Walker's various blunders in-game - every instance where things went pear-shaped because of his actions, it happened when he acted with only partial information. The mortars? [[spoiler: He didn't scout the area thoroughly enough to find the civilians]]. The aquarium? [[spoiler: He didn't ask any hard questions about why the CIA was there, instead trusting that they were on the level]]. Any In other words the story is not about WarIsHell so much as the dangers of which can happen in an actual warzone.
***
incompetent and self-destructive soldiers being given command on a key mission.
**
And [[PoorCommunicationKills the biggest miscommunication]] happened at the very beginning, when he and his group were fired upon by other US soldiers believing that Delta Squad [[spoiler: was working with the CIA]]. Had either side simply tried talking to the other, [[CouldHaveAvoidedThisPlot the entirety of the game could have been averted]].



* AwesomeMusic: The Radioman has good taste.

to:

* AwesomeMusic: The Radioman has good taste.taste and the music turns [[SuspiciouslyAproposMusic out to be fairly apposite]] to the situation at hand, especialy Martha and the Vandellas "Nowhere to Run".



** He can also been seen as a comparison to [[Anime/PuellaMagiMadokaMagica Sayaka Miki]] as characters who want desperately to be heroes, but find that they can't reconcile their fantasies with reality. Both resort to increasingly disturbing violence against what they perceive to be "evil", [[spoiler:become consumed in madness, realise it far too late to undo what they'd done, and become warped, monstrous versions of the good people they used to be.]]
*** Walker can also be compared to another character from a work of GenUrobuchi, [[LightNovel/FateZero Kiritsugu Emiya]].
** Walker also exhibits some interesting similarities with Alden Pyle from ''Literature/TheQuietAmerican''. Both characters are intelligent, well-meaning and idealistic Americans, but are nevertheless hopelessly misguided in their attempts to provide helpful military intervention in a foreign country filled with multiple warring factions, and only really succeed in worsening an already volatile situation that they barely understand to begin with. The most obvious difference between them, however, is that Pyle is the antagonist of ''The Quiet American'', whereas Walker is the protagonist of ''Spec Ops''.

to:

** He can also been seen as a comparison to [[Anime/PuellaMagiMadokaMagica Sayaka Miki]] as characters who want desperately to be heroes, but find that they can't reconcile their fantasies with reality. Both resort to increasingly disturbing violence against what they perceive to be "evil", [[spoiler:become consumed in madness, realise it far too late to undo what they'd done, and become warped, monstrous versions of the good people they used to be.]]
***
]] Walker can also be compared to another character from a work of GenUrobuchi, [[LightNovel/FateZero Kiritsugu Emiya]].
** Walker can also be compared to other Creator/NolanNorth characters, especially Nathan Drake whose violent mowing down of countless mooks in his quest for adventure has raised many eyebrows for the fact that Drake seems indifferent and unaffected by the consequences of his actions. North's Walker shows the unattractive and darker side of such a standard character archetype.
** Walker
also exhibits some interesting similarities with Alden Pyle from ''Literature/TheQuietAmerican''. ''Literature/TheQuietAmerican'' and it's 2002 movie adaptation. Both characters are intelligent, well-meaning and seemingly idealistic Americans, but are nevertheless hopelessly misguided in self-deluding and destructive about their attempts to provide helpful military intervention in a foreign country filled with multiple warring factions, country, denying the true evil they are complicit in and only really succeed in worsening an already volatile situation dissociating their actions from its consequences, and refuse to accept that they barely understand to begin with. are truly the villains of their story. The most obvious difference between them, however, is that Pyle is the antagonist of dies unrepentant in ''The Quiet American'', whereas Walker is the protagonist of comes to some understanding in ''Spec Ops''.



* CultClassic: Predicted by writer Walt Williams, who noted in an interview that the game's AudienceAlienatingPremise meant it was unlikely to ever be the sort of game with mass appeal. It has a hardcore following amongst certain gamers - usually those who seethe at the current trend of modern military shooters - enough to have a book written on it.

to:

* CultClassic: Predicted by writer Walt Williams, who noted in an interview that the game's AudienceAlienatingPremise meant it was unlikely to ever be the sort of game with mass appeal. It has a hardcore following amongst certain gamers - usually those who seethe at the current trend of modern military shooters - enough to have a book written on it. At the end of the 7th Console generation, the game has become acknowledged as a classic of that era.



* LoveItOrHateIt: There's very little middle ground between "a deep examination of violent games, violence in media, and player involvement" and "shallow, hypocritical, moralizing piece of garbage that insults players for taking the only path offered by the game".

to:

* LoveItOrHateIt: There's very little middle ground between "a deep examination of violent games, violence in media, and player involvement" and "shallow, hypocritical, moralizing piece of garbage that insults players for taking the only path offered by the game". The middle ground sees the game as being an immersive dramatic work that is about experiencing a darker side of human nature rather than a simple putdown of the genre.
4th May '16 3:11:57 AM JulianLapostat
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* SpiritualAdaptation: Is a good one for Film/ShutterIsland book and film, both are about a protagonist [[spoiler:with a pathological need of a heroic narrative to cope with their growing insanity]].

to:

* SpiritualAdaptation: Is a good one for Film/ShutterIsland book and film, both are about a protagonist [[spoiler:with a pathological need of a heroic narrative to cope with their growing insanity]].insanity, and post-traumatic stress]].
4th May '16 3:08:41 AM JulianLapostat
Is there an issue? Send a Message

Added DiffLines:

* SpiritualAdaptation: Is a good one for Film/ShutterIsland book and film, both are about a protagonist [[spoiler:with a pathological need of a heroic narrative to cope with their growing insanity]].
29th Apr '16 12:02:16 PM Aetol
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* AngstWhatAngst: After the [[spoiler:white phosphorous incident]], Adams is clearly disturbed and Lugo begins freaking out. Walker, on the other hand, has no outward reaction, which flabbergasts Adams. [[spoiler:Key word being "outward": [[AvertedTrope the guilt of it drives him to insanity and causes him to start hallucinating]].]] And given Walker's position in the chain-of-command, this also makes sense. Everything he said in that calm, cold tone after the incident was completely accurate - if the group didn't move from their position, it ''would'' only be a matter of time before other forces converged on their position. [[spoiler:Keeping on the move will also help him avoid reflecting on what he just did]]. Pragmatism at its most disturbing.

to:

* AngstWhatAngst: After the [[spoiler:white phosphorous phosphorus incident]], Adams is clearly disturbed and Lugo begins freaking out. Walker, on the other hand, has no outward reaction, which flabbergasts Adams. [[spoiler:Key word being "outward": [[AvertedTrope the guilt of it drives him to insanity and causes him to start hallucinating]].]] And given Walker's position in the chain-of-command, this also makes sense. Everything he said in that calm, cold tone after the incident was completely accurate - if the group didn't move from their position, it ''would'' only be a matter of time before other forces converged on their position. [[spoiler:Keeping on the move will also help him avoid reflecting on what he just did]]. Pragmatism at its most disturbing.



* BrokenBase: After the [[spoiler:white phosphorous incident]], there are exactly and ''only'' two opinions that people seem to have (reactions so polarized as to almost drag the entire game into LoveItOrHateIt territory):

to:

* BrokenBase: After the [[spoiler:white phosphorous phosphorus incident]], there are exactly and ''only'' two opinions that people seem to have (reactions so polarized as to almost drag the entire game into LoveItOrHateIt territory):



** Critic [[WebAnimation/ZeroPunctuation Ben "Yahtzee" Croshaw]] seemed to fall into both camps at once: He "felt like shit" for his initial delight at the white phosphorous "mini-game", but at the same time compared much of the game's horror to a person mooning you then criticizing you for looking at their butt. He did still make it his Game of the Year.

to:

** Critic [[WebAnimation/ZeroPunctuation Ben "Yahtzee" Croshaw]] seemed to fall into both camps at once: He "felt like shit" for his initial delight at the white phosphorous phosphorus "mini-game", but at the same time compared much of the game's horror to a person mooning you then criticizing you for looking at their butt. He did still make it his Game of the Year.



* CriticalDissonance: Critics, by and large, were impressed with the game's story and themes (if generally finding the gameplay decidedly lacklustre - neither noticeably good nor bad), but it sold very poorly. Players who did pick up the game were divided - one camp thinks it's brilliant for opening questions that many other games conspicuously fail to acknowledge about simulated violence, power fantasies, morality, and other assumptions that come part and parcel with the genre, in the frame of an affecting and stark character study - [[https://gumroad.com/l/fsdz enough that a critical examination supportive of the game was written]]. A second finds it pretentious, hypocritical, self-righteous about imaginary violence, and too flawed in itself to be making any criticisms (especially in relation to criticism leveled at violence of the player, while being violent itself like the White Phosphorous incident). It was enough to spawn two games mocking Spec Ops' morality play: [[http://tinysubversions.com/videogamemoralityplay/ Video Game Morality Play]] and [[http://tinysubversions.com/game/ywhtwt/ You Were Hallucinating The Whole Time]]. A third camp didn't care about the story and dismissed it as yet another shooter set in the tired modern military genre, with mediocre cover-based gameplay.* CryForTheDevil: The game welcomes you to empathize with [[spoiler:Walker himself]], and ultimately lets you decide whether or not he's redeemable.

to:

* CriticalDissonance: Critics, by and large, were impressed with the game's story and themes (if generally finding the gameplay decidedly lacklustre - neither noticeably good nor bad), but it sold very poorly. Players who did pick up the game were divided - one camp thinks it's brilliant for opening questions that many other games conspicuously fail to acknowledge about simulated violence, power fantasies, morality, and other assumptions that come part and parcel with the genre, in the frame of an affecting and stark character study - [[https://gumroad.com/l/fsdz enough that a critical examination supportive of the game was written]]. A second finds it pretentious, hypocritical, self-righteous about imaginary violence, and too flawed in itself to be making any criticisms (especially in relation to criticism leveled at violence of the player, while being violent itself like the White Phosphorous Phosphorus incident). It was enough to spawn two games mocking Spec Ops' morality play: [[http://tinysubversions.com/videogamemoralityplay/ Video Game Morality Play]] and [[http://tinysubversions.com/game/ywhtwt/ You Were Hallucinating The Whole Time]]. A third camp didn't care about the story and dismissed it as yet another shooter set in the tired modern military genre, with mediocre cover-based gameplay.* CryForTheDevil: The game welcomes you to empathize with [[spoiler:Walker himself]], and ultimately lets you decide whether or not he's redeemable.



* HypeBacklash: A number of critics and players feel that the game's deconstruction and story aren't as clever, well-done, and mind-blowing as the game's fandom has claimed it to be, especially critical of the White Phosphorous and player-criticism aspects.

to:

* HypeBacklash: A number of critics and players feel that the game's deconstruction and story aren't as clever, well-done, and mind-blowing as the game's fandom has claimed it to be, especially critical of the White Phosphorous Phosphorus and player-criticism aspects.



* ItWasHisSled: It's become fairly common knowledge that [[spoiler:using the white phosphorous mortar inadvertently kills a large group of civilians, and the player character isn't the rugged, noble, mentally-balanced hero you'd expect him to be, along with the game's anti-violence spiels in the form of Konrad and the mocking loading screens that verbally berate the player]].

to:

* ItWasHisSled: It's become fairly common knowledge that [[spoiler:using the white phosphorous phosphorus mortar inadvertently kills a large group of civilians, and the player character isn't the rugged, noble, mentally-balanced hero you'd expect him to be, along with the game's anti-violence spiels in the form of Konrad and the mocking loading screens that verbally berate the player]].



** Walt Williams gets a lot of flak for saying that "turning off the game" is the correct choice in response to the way it criticizes the player, particularly after the White Phosphorous scene. At best it's pretentious, blaming the player for the developers' inability or unwillingness to add a layer of choice to the part of the game that's most polarizing, at worst it's telling the player they're a horrible person for daring to want to actually play the game they spent money on. The problem is, what Williams actually said was that turning off the game is ''a valid'' choice, not ''the only correct'' choice. A good deal of arguments over the game are caused by this misconception.

to:

** Walt Williams gets a lot of flak for saying that "turning off the game" is the correct choice in response to the way it criticizes the player, particularly after the White Phosphorous Phosphorus scene. At best it's pretentious, blaming the player for the developers' inability or unwillingness to add a layer of choice to the part of the game that's most polarizing, at worst it's telling the player they're a horrible person for daring to want to actually play the game they spent money on. The problem is, what Williams actually said was that turning off the game is ''a valid'' choice, not ''the only correct'' choice. A good deal of arguments over the game are caused by this misconception.



** [[spoiler: If that doesn't count, there's also the ending where he slaughters the unambiguously friendly soldiers sent to pick him up (an entirely deliberate act, unlike the white phosphorous incident, which could be rationalized to some degree as accidental). Very much not coincidentally, [[YouBastard it's something the player will have to consciously choose to do]].]]

to:

** [[spoiler: If that doesn't count, there's also the ending where he slaughters the unambiguously friendly soldiers sent to pick him up (an entirely deliberate act, unlike the white phosphorous phosphorus incident, which could be rationalized to some degree as accidental). Very much not coincidentally, [[YouBastard it's something the player will have to consciously choose to do]].]]



* SignatureScene: The [[spoiler:white phosphorous incident]] is pretty much the defining moment of the game, mainly because of being a massive PlayerPunch and the moment where the GenreShift really kicks in.

to:

* SignatureScene: The [[spoiler:white phosphorous phosphorus incident]] is pretty much the defining moment of the game, mainly because of being a massive PlayerPunch and the moment where the GenreShift really kicks in.
15th Apr '16 12:09:14 AM SuckerPerpetrator
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* CriticalDissonance: Critics, by and large, were impressed with the game's story and themes (if generally finding the gameplay decidedly lacklustre - neither noticeably good nor bad), but it sold very poorly. Players who did pick up the game were divided - one camp thinks it's brilliant for opening questions that many other games conspicuously fail to acknowledge about simulated violence, power fantasies, morality, and other assumptions that come part and parcel with the genre, in the frame of an affecting and stark character study - [[https://gumroad.com/l/fsdz enough that a critical examination supportive of the game was written]]. A second finds it pretentious, hypocritical, self-righteous about imaginary violence, and too flawed in itself to be making any criticisms (especially in relation to criticism leveled at violence of the player, while being violent itself like the White Phosphorous incident).
* CryForTheDevil: The game welcomes you to empathize with [[spoiler:Walker himself]], and ultimately lets you decide whether or not he's redeemable.
* CultClassic: Predicted by writer Walt Williams, who noted in an interview that the game's AudienceAlienatingPremise meant it was unlikely to ever be the sort of game with mass appeal. It has a hardcore following amongst certain gamers, enough to have a book written on it.

to:

* CriticalDissonance: Critics, by and large, were impressed with the game's story and themes (if generally finding the gameplay decidedly lacklustre - neither noticeably good nor bad), but it sold very poorly. Players who did pick up the game were divided - one camp thinks it's brilliant for opening questions that many other games conspicuously fail to acknowledge about simulated violence, power fantasies, morality, and other assumptions that come part and parcel with the genre, in the frame of an affecting and stark character study - [[https://gumroad.com/l/fsdz enough that a critical examination supportive of the game was written]]. A second finds it pretentious, hypocritical, self-righteous about imaginary violence, and too flawed in itself to be making any criticisms (especially in relation to criticism leveled at violence of the player, while being violent itself like the White Phosphorous incident).
incident). It was enough to spawn two games mocking Spec Ops' morality play: [[http://tinysubversions.com/videogamemoralityplay/ Video Game Morality Play]] and [[http://tinysubversions.com/game/ywhtwt/ You Were Hallucinating The Whole Time]]. A third camp didn't care about the story and dismissed it as yet another shooter set in the tired modern military genre, with mediocre cover-based gameplay.* CryForTheDevil: The game welcomes you to empathize with [[spoiler:Walker himself]], and ultimately lets you decide whether or not he's redeemable.
* CultClassic: Predicted by writer Walt Williams, who noted in an interview that the game's AudienceAlienatingPremise meant it was unlikely to ever be the sort of game with mass appeal. It has a hardcore following amongst certain gamers, gamers - usually those who seethe at the current trend of modern military shooters - enough to have a book written on it.


Added DiffLines:

* HypeBacklash: A number of critics and players feel that the game's deconstruction and story aren't as clever, well-done, and mind-blowing as the game's fandom has claimed it to be, especially critical of the White Phosphorous and player-criticism aspects.


Added DiffLines:

* ItsShortSoItSucks: One common reviewer complaint is that this game has a full triple-A price, yet the campaign only lasts less than 3 hours (on easier difficulties). In comparison, even your basic ''VideoGame/ModernWarfare'' or ''VideoGame/MedalOfHonor'' campaign usually lasts at least 5-6 hours for an average player. On harder difficulties, however, the average player will take [[http://howlongtobeat.com/gamebreakdown.php?gameid=4553 about the same amount of time]] as that.
4th Apr '16 8:59:19 AM Folamh3
Is there an issue? Send a Message


** Konrad's quote "Everything is teetering on the bridge of everything" is a ShoutOut to poet Charles Simic, which lead writer Walt Williams included with the intent of establishing Konrad as a WickedCultured character. The reference was so obscure that numerous players believed it was original to the game.

to:

** Konrad's quote "Everything is teetering on the bridge edge of everything" is a ShoutOut to poet Charles Simic, which lead writer Walt Williams included with the intent of establishing Konrad as a WickedCultured character. The reference was so obscure that numerous players believed it was original to the game.
4th Apr '16 8:58:25 AM Folamh3
Is there an issue? Send a Message

Added DiffLines:

** Konrad's quote "Everything is teetering on the bridge of everything" is a ShoutOut to poet Charles Simic, which lead writer Walt Williams included with the intent of establishing Konrad as a WickedCultured character. The reference was so obscure that numerous players believed it was original to the game.
This list shows the last 10 events of 362. Show all.
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/article_history.php?article=YMMV.SpecOpsTheLine