Video games walk a fine line when it comes to realism. No one expects a mushroom-eating plumber to obey the laws of reality, but if a gritty Call Of Duty soldier could double in size by pounding back some magic fungi, that would just be absurd. And, as we've told you before, sometimes games are at their most ridiculous when they're trying too hard to keep it real:
5NBA 2K15's Facial Recognition Creates Nightmarish Monsters
One of the best features of sports games is the ability to insert yourself into the action with perfect stats and rock-hard abs, even though you started wheezing when you bent over to pick up the controller. Unfortunately, you're usually limited to designing a face that kinda-sorta looks a little bit like you.
Then NBA 2K15 found a use for the Kinect that didn't involve random flailing. It uses the camera to take a photo of the player and scan it onto the body of a perfect athlete. To demonstrate, here's a regular dude.
And here's what NBA 2K15 says he looks like.
Oh. Oh, shit. It's the Pale Man's non-pale cousin. It might be tough to play in the NBA with no eyes and a mouth that constantly screams for the suffering to end, but at least he'll have plenty of time and space to line up shots when everyone in the arena flees in terror.
He wasn't alone in his The Hills Have No Eyes But Love Listening To Basketball experience. Either this scan went horribly wrong or BoJack Horseman is a fan.
via Know Your Meme
"I am not a good person."
Here's I Have Two Mouths And One Is Screaming:
The burn victim who tried to get his face tattooed back on by a shaky blind man:
"Excuse me, my eyes are up here. No, not that far up.
OK, now to the side a little."
And this un-man, who again suggests that the facial scan technology was originally intended to be a Guillermo del Toro monster generator.
He roams Mark Cuban's Labyrinth.
To be fair, some of these unholy accidents are the result of gamers not following instructions. But it still seems you're just as likely to get a Lovecraftian horror after a trip to the burn unit as you are a realistic representation. Also, it tends to make black people look like white people in blackface.
Not even custom-character creators are immune to Hollywood whitewashing.
Or like the very face of unholy terror:
"TRUE HORROR DOES NOT KNOW RACE! THE BLOOD
THAT RAINS FROM THE SKY DRENCHES US ALL!"
That's right, behold as the fabric of reality is torn asunder to reveal the dark heart of an uncaring universe that lies just beyond our perception!
"YOUR 99 DUNK RATING WILL NOT SAVE YOU
FROM ETERNAL OBLIVION."
4Shenmue II Makes You Take A Two-Hour Hike
Shenmue had an insane dedication to realism, whether it was a perfect and pointless re-creation of 1987's weather patterns or the fact that you were forced to get a tedious 9 to 5 job as the climactic finale. But Shenmue II was more user-friendly, so surely they wouldn't make the same decisions ... right?
The sequel looks like it's going to climax when Ryo Hazuki, trying to find his father's murderer, battles his way through a wave of gangsters and fistfights Buddha. Victorious, he gets his next clue: The killer is going to a small Chinese village. Villain vanquished, sequel teased, roll credits.
Are the credits over here?
Just kidding! That would make too much sense. Instead you take a boat ride to the picturesque (by Dreamcast standards) Chinese wilderness, where a friendly, conveniently Japanese-speaking villager informs you that the village you seek is a three-day hike away. Other games would fade to black or a map screen that lets you make the trip in moments. Shenmue II forces you to take every single step.
For almost two hours after that emotional boss fight, pretty much all you do is walk forward. There are events along the way -- you gather twigs for a fire, dodge fallen trees, and occasionally jump a gap or ford a river. But almost every activity comes down to pressing a button quickly when the game tells you to, and you usually suffer little more than a fall on your ass if you fail. The closest you get to excitement is rescuing a drowning girl who turns out to be a girl you've been dreaming about. So that's going to give you a lot of important things to discuss, right?
Or we could discuss elementary school geography. That works too.
Nope. Your literal dream woman mostly prattles on about leaves, trees, and mountains, as though the developers decided players needed to wind down with a relaxing nature walk. You can watch the epic cross-country trek if you have a spare hour and 40 minutes and have already watched every movie in existence.
Except Mortdecai. Definitely watch this before Mortdecai.
Eventually you reach her house, and then your patience will be rewarded with a final showdown with the killer, right? Yes, but only if you count waiting 14 years for the opportunity to give money to the Shenmue III Kickstarter. You find out the girl might have magic powers (oh, so now you're abandoning realism, Shenmue?), examine a sword and a mysterious note, and the credits finally anticlimactically roll. Jesus, we haven't seen pacing that bad since we tried to run a marathon.