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Power Member - Level 10
I have an evil brother. He's not my twin brother, so no one
is going to write a comic about us. And he's not evil evil, so nobody is going to compare him to a dictator or the
devil or anything like that. However, he is
evil, and I have proof.
Gamers are pretty accustomed to the binary oppositions
proposed by morality in games. A vast number of titles utilize the idea of
making a player turn to good or evil or some variation of the two (of course,
the best games explore the grey in between, but that's another subject.) So, as
gamers, we've all chosen a side while pursuing our digital endeavors. Will my
hero in Fable be a halo-wearing good guy? Is my Commander Sheppard going to be
a ruthless, galactic hate-monger? Cole: blue or red?
My evil brother and I play a ton of video games, and we
always try to tailor our experiences to oppose one another. It may seem like an
artificial way to approach a game, but it allows for more engaging
conversations about the games we play. Essentially, we can cover more narrative
ground if we each take a different side of the coin.
As you can probably guess, if evil is an option, my brother
happily opts to adopt it. When he tells me of his gaming exploits, they're
generally along the lines of how he murdered, robbed, and destroyed anything
with a pulse. He laughs as he talks about shocking innocent civilians with Cole's
limitless powers. He proudly proclaims that his Commander Sheppard has glowing
red scars, indicating the amount genocidal destruction he has left in his path. He even
finds joy in the idea of his Fable hero marrying and then abandoning a random
This isn't what makes him evil, though. Really, he's more fulfilling
a long term contract we've made. I do the good stuff. He does the bad. We talk
about what we saw. Good times are had.
What makes my brother so evil is what I witnessed while he
was pursuing one of his mischief-filled save files. We were both playing
through Red Dead Redemption's massive downloadable content, Undead Nightmare.
One of the earlier side quests of the game tasks Marston with finding and
killing the wild yetis that had been spotted around Tall Trees. My brother was
roaming the harsh, snow-covered terrain on horseback, seeking the unwanted
yetis of the land.
We both noticed that, for some reason, the yetis never put
forth a fight. Every time my brother approached one, engaging it in combat, the
behemoth would simply flee. I figured it was the AI being strange, perhaps not
accurately guiding a path to the player. My brother figured it was just easy target
Alas, my brother found the final yeti of the land. The beast is crying and shivering, sitting under a tree. Marston approaches it, raising
his pistol. The yeti sobs and begs for Marston to end its miserable, lonely
life. Marston assures him he will, reaffirming that the yeti is simply a
creature of the night who feeds off babies to survive. The yeti, enraged by
this claim, eloquently defends his species. He explains to Marston that his
people have inhabited the land for thousands of years, feeding off berries and
mushrooms to live. They are a peaceful kind, explaining why they would not fight back Marston's onslaught.
Marston lowers his pistol, and the player is left to his own
devices. As soon as he controlled Marston once more, my brother immediately
raised his gun and aimed at the defenseless yeti. I thought, "Of
course my brother is going to murder the helpless creature. He loves being evil
and what not."
My brother lowered his pistol and watched the yeti slowly
shuffle away. I was stunned. My brother not
mindlessly killing something in a video game? How did this come about?
He then rationalized his decision. "He said it himself," my
brother explained. "That dumb yeti is all alone in the world. Not killing him
is way more evil than wasting a bullet on him. Have fun living your lonely
existence, you stupid yeti!"
That poor, hairy, usually blurry son of a gun...