Saturday, June 27, 2009

Jack Frost Hat

I made this hat completely from scratch and my obsession with Atlus. :D

Its made of fleece so its warm and cozy. Modeled by yours truly.

If you make it purple and change the smiley face it can be Black Frost's hat too.

I will do a commission for any other Atlus fans out there, just contact me at:


Tuesday, June 23, 2009


Ok, so I haven't put any work up here yet but that doesn't mean I haven't done any. I'm just lazy.

But one thing I have been doing is thinking. A lot. So much in fact that my insomnia has gotten to an unhealthy level and I'm pretty sure that's why I'm sick right now. But on the bright side, at least I have something to say now, instead of being a completely dull waste of space.

Another thing I've been doing is playing games, I wouldn't be me if that weren't true.

So, I read this blog on Gamasutra today about morality in games and it made me think about none other than my favorite game atm, Persona 4.

(many a spoiler here so if any reader is interested in playing the game I would suggest reading this later.)

Never while playing a game, even when shooting people without reason and stepping on poor defenseless turtles, have I felt so horrible about my moral code as when I threw Nametame into the TV in Persona 4. Since I don't really know of anyone else playing this game right now I'll explain a bit. This occurs during a scene near the end of the game, where you confront the man believed to be responsible for the murders in Inaba . At this point I was feeling exactly the same way as the characters in the game were about the situation. I was blinded by how pissed off I was at the guy for 'killing' Nanako, a young little sister like figure in the game, killing two other people and putting all of my friends in danger. These feelings resulted in me chosing, instead of thinking things through, to hastily throw the man into the TV, thus ending his life. This action lead to Nanako's true death and a horrible ending to the game where nothing is really solved and no one is happy. Right then and there as I watched the credits rolling by I realized my mistake and felt like a horrible person. I should've thought about things more instead of letting my emotions dictate my actions. Thankfully in a game, unlike real life, you can go back to your last save point. So I went back and chose to think about the situation and be calm, and low and behold, the man was innocent, Nanako lived after all (due to my good karma) and I found the real culprit leading ultimately to the salvation of the world. Though this is probably a more extreme cause and effect than we see in most real life situations it really makes me wonder; if a situation like that came up in real life would I do the same thing? Maybe I didn't think as hard about the consequences of my actions because it was 'just a game'. But, it was 'just a game' I had invested much time energy and emotion into that I really did care about the outcome of.

This really impressed me. The game forced me to think and make meaningful choices and most importantly, to see the negative effects that can come from a bad choice. It somehow made the game experience more personal to me, that I could have such an effect on the outcome. Not only that, but it made me question my own morals. So I really do think that a sense of morality makes the gaming experience a lot more meaningful and satisfying. Maybe not to every form of gamer, such as my father who will only play games in which you can shoot stuff and has zero interest in a story, but to those of us who have evolved past the whole violence = fun mentality and are looking for a little more out of a game.

Come to think of it, another of my favorite games had a very strong theme of morality, and that is Darkwatch, an old shooter I used to play on the Xbox. You play as Jericho Cross, an outlaw, recently turned vampire. Throughout the game there are many "good" and "bad" choices that effect your morality and in turn your morality effects your powers throughout the game. I've seen things like this in many games since then, its definitely not a unique mechanic. In the case of Darkwatch and other games with a similar morality system however, I think being bad is more fun and theres really no negative outcome to chosing the dark side, unlike in Persona 4. Those rage like powers are really more rewarding. And that is the problem with a lot of the morality systems in games these days. They make the player think they are getting a choice but really when it comes down to it, most people chose fun over morals, especially in a game world.

I guess at the end of the day, sometimes people just wanna kill things to unwind, and there's nothing wrong with that. So I guess it's good to have both types of games out there. I really wasn't trying to prove any type of point here, just thinking out loud, so to speak.