Saturday, November 3, 2012

Ouchies; Sine Mora revisited

at 2:18 PM
How the motherfuck is it pronounced. Come on. Someone tell me. It's eating me up inside. It's eating a sandwich inside. It made a sandwich from my insides?! That is FUKK'D.
Certainly the game was the belle of the 2.5D ball
Hang on let me invent this thing called a search 'train' engine and then invent this thing called the Internet and go 'on' the Internet thing and post the answer to my question and then rediscover the search brain and wait how did I discover it without having something with which to search oops plot hole well let's just move on because this is Hollywood. It looks like it's Latin(o?) for "ohne Verspaetung", which is German for "without delay(o?)", which is English for "turkey time". My high school Latin experience tells me that there isn't really an official pronunciation of Latin words, so you generally just say all the syllables as if they were phonetic English. I don't know this for a fact. That was like ten years ago and I was never super-sure that I could take my teacher's word for anything. So let's stick with what I've been saying all along, "SEE-nay MORE-ah". Of course, the game was developed and titled by fucking Hungarians, so they probably say it completely differently. OH MY GOD THIS IS ALL SO FUKK'D TO READ ABOUT!

See how hard it is just to pronounce Sine Mora? That sets the tone for the entire game. Not simply because it's hard as FUKK'D. Because it's hard in a way that you can choose to ignore, or choose to tear out your hair over. Just about any player can putz their way through story mode, the same way a four-year-old could get through the title as "Sinnamer". And just like a four-year-old, they can be proud of their work and pat themselves on the back for a job well done. We can think of this as "critic mode". Sine Mora also offers a far more difficult to perfect Arcade mode, which provides extremely punishing piecemeal challenges that force you to constantly use all of those tools that were previously forgotten.

This isn't so original in the world of the console shmup. Yes, Sine Mora actually justifies the presence of Story Mode, but the notion of being able to cruise through, spamming the Insert Coin button, is present (and oft-criticized) in everything from Mushihimesama to Mushihimesama Futari. What makes the challenge more worthwhile and entertaining in Sine is that it's not simply in pursuit of score. The game offers a mode that actually makes survival a challenge, and weirdly enough, it evokes in me a tension very similar to survival horror games.

You know what, it's just a tension similar to tense games. Because the only survival horror example back-flipping across my brain at the moment is Dead Space. What made that game scary was the constant threat of space coming back to life as a zombie. See, in the beginning, your character gets fed up with killing time. He gets bored. So he reads a book that says "time & space are a continuum, that's why they call me Albert and Ernie Einstein", and says, holy shit, if I kill space instead of time, maybe that will give me something different to do while still accomplishing my main goal (kill time). That all happens in the form of a minigame, and then something about a ship which crashed into space's corpse. It's a tense game because you're left wondering, "is space rly dead tho?" Wait none of this sounds right where's my script?
Since when does Space look like THAT?
Another tense game is Dark Souls, which can be shortened to DS if you're brave enough to risk it being mistake for a video game platform or Dead Space. Dark Souls is scary because sometimes your entire game gets ruined because SOME BULLSHIT FROM THE CEILING.

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