Friday, May 3, 2013

The truth the Liberal Media doesn't want you to know about grenade launchers

at 2:18 PM
Grenade launchers are fun! You hear me MSNBC? CNB? ANC? LNEF? Alright, I don't have time to list every combination of letters that isn't FOX aka TRUTH. What are you gonna do about it? Send your liberal silencing squad to shoot me in the head for contradicting an officially endorsed Presidential position? You may have taken away my second amendment, but you're not about to take away my first. Or fourth, or eleventh, but probably the eighteenth you might take away. THAT'S JUST HOW AMENDMENTS WORK. Also, have you heard that liberals support shooting fetuses, which are real live babies with souls and career opportunities? If you can shoot babies, how come suddenly guns need to be controlled because I shot my two year old sister?!

That may have been in poor taste.

Look, it's Friday, or technically right now it's Thursday, but you might be reading this on Friday if I finish it, but if not, I assure you that it will be a day of the week when I do and therefore you do. I don't have time to write, revise, and publish the Magna Descarta, nor would it be worth the time or on topic. What I want to remark is that, hm, how come grenade launchers are such a fun weapon? Am I the only one that thinks they're always a blast? Sorry, I didn't mean to say "blast". I never dreamt it could happen. They're a... good?

You're all like, "yeah, duh, explosives are always a delicacy. That's why I 'play' with them every weekend in a mostly supervised environment designed to replicate the exact layout of the Obama Administration White House." Okay smart brain, in that case, riddler me this: how come rocket launchers aren't any fun at all? You know it's true. Every time you see an RPG in a game (NOT THE GENRE HAHAHA), you say, "lame. This again. It's gonna go boomy once and then be tossed aside forever endeavor." Why do I keep doing the thing where I quote a fantasy reader's thoughts? Such a weird writing device. Does that have a name? "Terrible" is what it should be called. Just fucking awful.

I'm listening to this song right now, so you should too, to get into my post's mindset. Crank up the volume.

My parents gave me my first grenade launcher when I was ten. See, here in the Northern Canada (Maryland), it's tradition for kids to learn to shoot as soon as they hit double digits. We wouldn't have it any other way. Why? Because (of course) every adult needs high explosives in the house, and there's literally no way to keep children from using them, so they need to be taught at an early age how to do so safely. For example, in my childhood, my dad had like five plus guns in the house. I knew he had them, but never once saw one or went looking, because he never mentioned them, drew them at home, or allowed us to fire any type of weapon (paintball and BB guns included). True story. Unfortunately, because of this utter irresponsibility on his part, I was shot and killed at age nine. Tragic. But as I was saying: when I was ten, I first got my hands on a grenade launcher thanks to Goldeneye 007 on the N64. 

Goldeneye belonged to that passing late '90s fad where the opinion was that more weapons == better game, and accordingly possessed one of the longest weapon lists of any FPS I've ever played. Not to mention that you could enter a cheat to unlock every last one, carry them all at once, dual wield, and even mixed-dual-wield (if you knew the trick). So why, of all those present, does the grenade launcher remain most prominent in my brain (besides proximity mines - fucking proximity mines lol)? Let's slow down for a second and look at exactly what a grenade launcher is. It's a gun that launchers grenades.

The explosive effect helps, but again, that doesn't explain why it takes precedence over mines or rocket launchers. The (relatively) large clip and repeating nature is certainly a boon. Most rocket launchers fire slowly and need to be reloaded (or discarded) after every use. Grenades can be deployed for immediate response against multiple foes. Their typically delayed detonation allows for multiple grenades to be dished out at once, to then explode near-simultaneously. "The only thing better than an explosion is two explosions at once" - Jerry Bruckheimer in "Behind the Cage", a Con Air feature production. I don't know why that's cool and I don't really care. The point is, with grenade launcher, anything is possible.

I was playing Zeno Clash the other night and though it's mainly an FPB, it briefly introduced an arcing fireball weapon that called to mind GLs. The thing is, no explosion. Just fired an arcing fireball with a very small area-of-effect.

Nonetheless, I derived an unusual amount of pleasure from using it. So, is it not the explosionism of grenade launchers that I've fallen in love with, but in fact the arcingness of their fire? That seems stupid. Seems downright silly. Think about it though. 99% of video game weapons operate with no regard for gravity or physics. When you don't have the stock of a shotgun slamming into your shoulder with every trigger-pull, the game has a lot of work to do in convincing you the weapon is real. This is primarily accomplished visually and audiolly, or with basic screen effects and aim offset. With a grenade launcher, you observe the recourse of physics on each and every projectile as it droops toward the ground. It conveys a weight and immediacy to each attack.

The indirect arc also makes each successful shot that much more rewarding, because it relies on prediction and coordination. Game guns that rely on digital cross-hairs or superbly accurate sights simply ask the player to line up two abstract representations: a little white X, and an enemy's head. You don't have to have fired a real gun to know that this is nothing like the actual experience, and nowhere near as satisfying. But if you haven't fired a gun, I personally encourage you to buy one (all ages please!) and go try it out at home. I hear that bullets usually don't go through walls, so just shoot at your neighbors house. If he complains about the noise, tell him it was just your dog barking. When you come back from prison, you might come to realize that the more thought that goes into aiming, the more satisfying a hit will be. 

So it's like, if real guns are more fun than digital ones, and grenade launchers are the most fun guns that games can offer, shouldn't real grenade launchers be the funnest thing in the world? You thinking what I'm thinking? Who you gonna call? Dustbusters.

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