Wednesday, February 18, 2009


As usual I'm late to the party, and I'm sure everyone has formed their opinions about Flower, what a cool artistic game it is, how much fun it is to fly around sailing in the wind as it swirls your little petals to their hearts delights through meadows, dabbling in brooks, breezing around solumn rock outcroppings, and so forth.

It is a beautiful game. It's a peaceful game, a game that frees you of the confines of your dank little apartment that's half a floor underground, of which the cutscenes only serve as a vicious tormenting reminder. Flower, are you mocking my existence?

No, well not intentionally so. But I envy its beauty, I want to own it, make it mine, a goddess I'll never know.

The thing, though, that really bugs me about playing it? It has made me realize how bad a game player I am. Not bad skillwise, although that's true too, but rather from a theoretical point of view. Or maybe an ideological one. I don't know. The point is, I don't play this game, even this game, in which winning hardly seems to be a point at all, because I enjoy it. 

I play it to accomplish all the tasks to perfection. FOR SHAME. It really does ruin the fun of it, why? Because I end up focusing on figuring out how to get all my damn flowers to bloom, rather than the joy mentioned nigh four paragraphs ago.

Is it different for each level? Do I just need to have a butt load of flower petals when I end the level? All of them? Does getting zapped on level 5 lower my flower budding capability? Are there three sets of green petals on every level? THE GAME EXPLAINS NOTHING ARGH. Shouldn't I be basking in this ambiguity, celebrating its enigmaticity, if that is a word? Letting my imagination run away with itself at the possibilities this game presents, or at the very least, let my fucking obsession with perfection drown in a pool of drool so that I can get on with finishing the levels that it will let me play regardless of how well I did on the previous ones? Isn't that what's so cool about it, that you can enjoy the loose interpretive narrative no matter how unskilled you are, which makes my girlfriend (who is so amazing at everything else) happy to play as well?

Yes, this is my problem with game playing, my vice, my flaw. So I ask readers, do you have any flaws in your perception of gameplay that interfere with your actual joy of playing the game? Am I alone? What a desolate place this is.

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