Tags

, , , , ,

Puncherson_64LadyBrain_64

Spoilers for the end of Beyond: Two Souls

Butch:

Didn’t play more than what we already talked about. I feel like we were talking about something good, but I forget what. Hot. Tired. And playing with the meds again so very foggy and slightly forgetful. Who are you?

But at least the levels are high cuz I saw Incredibles 2 and MAN they are NOT fucking around with that seizure warning they put on that thing. Thank God I anticipated the scene they were warning the most about and went to the bathroom. Mrs. McP looked over and saw my chair empty and panicked. Said even she felt nauseous.

So watch out for that movie.

Even Pixar has it out for me.

Sorry, where were we? It’s kinda hot in here and I’m a little foggy….

Feminina:

Hm. We were talking about Ryan and the awkward conversation you’re going to have with him when it turns out he’s not dead after all…ghostly predators…governments…

Speaking of governments, did you read the other country that built a condenser as North Korea? I like to think it turns out their nuclear weapons program was actually a diversion from their true goal–of a GHOST weapons program!

I guess. It’s hard to tell what governments think they’re going to do with the infraworld, exactly, but one can pretty much always believably state in a narrative that “they’re studying [weird sinister thing] for military applications” so I don’t have a particular concern with it.

And obviously if one could harness or direct the giant predator spirits (as, in a limited way at the beginning, the Navajo managed to do), that would be a pretty useful weapon. I’m kind of surprised we’ve never heard anyone speculate about how Aiden wound up attached to Jodie and whether there’s some way to attach spirits to other people on purpose, because equipping your entire army with poltergeist familiars would also be kind of handy. Or even just a subset of your army to be the special Spirit Corps or whatever! Imagine the possibilities!

Maybe that will be in the sequel.

Butch:

I did not think North Korea, but I can sorta see it. It was a strange collection of geography and ethnicity. Cuz I thought they said “something or other Stan” was doing it, which read as Eastern European/pseudo-Russian, and then that made sense cuz snow, and then there were Asian dudes. Which made me think “Uh..where’d these Asian dudes come from?”

Does North Korea have forty below winters?

I dunno. Jarred.

You LIKE to think North Korea has ghost weapons?

Dude. Heat has baked your brain.

It’s ALWAYS “the stupid army is stupid and wants it.” Always. Going back to like, ET. Probably before that. The Nazi’s wanted the Ark of the Covenant in Raiders, Trinity wants, like, everything in TR, it’s a trope as old as time.

Ooo! Good catch on the Navajo ALSO wanting to weaponize it (which they did) and it going horribly wrong (which it likely will here, cuz trope). That went over my heat baked head.

You’re really hoping for a sequel, aren’t you?

I dunno, man. David Cage has never made a sequel to any of his games. But ya never know.

Speaking of which, Heavy Rain is currently free. Get it. Throw it on the pile.

I’ll remind you.

Feminina:

Yeah, it’s true, the frozen arctic wasteland didn’t mesh so much with my North Korea interpretation. And like you, I heard the name of the country as “something-stan” and thought Eastern European/Russian-esque, so when I saw the Asian faces it was an odd touch.

Something about the uniforms, though…although really, all military uniforms have a similar look.

You’re right, it probably wasn’t meant to evoke North Korea in particular, just a jumble of Northern Eurasian something or other. You know…that country that’s between China and Russia? In the far north? By the big lake or on the coast or something? Asiastan? I hate those guys. Always up to something spooky.

And I don’t like to think of North Korea with ghost weapons, particularly, but in a FICTIONAL sense I kind of like the thought of nuclear weapons being a front. “I will pretend to be doing something incredibly dangerous, to hide the fact that I am actually doing something possibly EVEN MORE dangerous!” (It hasn’t actually been argued in the game that ghosts are worse than nukes, but Jodie’s shaken “next time there’ll be nothing left” suggests that they’re plenty destructive, so who knows?)

It has a narrative symmetry to it, or something. Plus, it’s a great distraction: you get everyone focused on your pretend nuclear weapons program over HERE, and no one pays attention to your real ghost-condensing-machine over THERE. In Asiastan.

And speaking of nukes, I think after the bomb, the military pretty much has to just take the “we’re always interested in the weapons potential of stuff” trope.

Or, you know, after mustard gas. Or airplanes. Or boards with nails in them.

Is it a trope if it’s just obviously the truth?

Butch:

Well, I just played a lot. Indeed BOOM! finished! Huzzah!

We’ll talk. Later. Gotta let that sink in. A bunch of “what?” And now I can see the whole sequel thing. Yes, that was a bit of a tease, wasn’t it?

Well, it was “something stan” cuz the general mentioned it again. And he said they were able to attach entities to American soldiers, so yeah.

Cannot trust Asiastan.

And the whole end scene that you very much didn’t spoil, that also suggests destruction. Brava on the restraint.

You’re depressing me about the military. Let’s ponder the ending.

Just so, I chose life (Cuz really….”I want to be with these people I love…you know…the old Navajo guy and my mom I never knew.” Right. Good choice. Actually, not much of a choice. Plus, you’ll end up in the infraworld eventually anyway, right?

And chose Jay the Navajo. Seemed to make sense.

And took the money.

And healed Cole and talked sense into Nathan.

I totally saw that coming. Saw all the pictures of his family. Knew what he was up to.

But having Aiden still there was ALSO cheap. Made me say “Well DUH I didn’t pick the beyond.” Cuz he was the main draw, right? So DUH.

But here’s a thing: The title. Does it mean the best thing to do is to move beyond being “two souls?” to mourn the dead and move on? To always be yourself? Or does it mean that having that second soul (Aiden/your romantic interest) takes you “beyond” without anything supernatural?

I dunno. Lot to ponder.

But yeah, I’m with you. I’ll be kinda pissed if they don’t make a sequel after that tease.

I have a feeling I’m going to have very passionate mixed feelings about this game the more I think on it.

Still, I’d play a sequel. Or Detroit. Or Heavy Rain, which is free go get it.

And it looks like I’ll have MAD time tomorrow! I might catch you with Captain Spirit!

Maybe. Probably not.

Feminina:

Nice work finishing! Yay me not spoiling!

Good work healing Cole. I didn’t. Once again, the sense of urgency got me. And then after I hurried away and had been hurrying for a while I was like “damn it, they got me again…this wasn’t actually urgent! I should have stopped to heal Cole!”

So he was there on the other side, waiting for me, but I still chose life.

And that whole ‘slogging through the Black Star’ bit started to remind me of that part in Uncharted…3? Where Nathan Drake is just staggering through the desert for about two in-game days, and they make you play it for what seems like two real hours? It went on for a while, is what I mean. Which eventually kind made the tension kind of wear off, although not before I’d left Cole to die…sigh. Obviously I somehow managed to save Ryan, because whatever, my Ryan will never die. (Was your Ryan actually dead? Did you have an awkward conversation?)

Anyway, I think even though it went on for a while, it worked OK for me–I thought maybe it was SUPPOSED to eventually become kind of weirdly dull for her, as she approached the boundary or whatever, so I didn’t hate it.

And dude, I’m confused. Your Aiden is still with you? My Aiden disappeared into the infraworld! I was a total wreck after I got out (with Ryan) because he wasn’t with me anymore! How did yours stay with you?

What did I do that made mine leave? Incidentally, it seems totally obvious once they reveal that Aiden was actually Jodie’s stillborn twin, but I admit I didn’t see it coming even a little. It never occurred to me. And yet, that explains a great deal about why he’s always been with her, why he seemed like a kid when she was a kid, etc.

Butch:

I saved Cole. And, in the VERY LONG epilogue, I, apparently, sent him a letter than was just a crayon drawing of a princess. Jody: vague to the end.

My Ryan was alive, one eyed, and would NOT take no for an answer. I broke his heart MULTIPLE times. After the military briefing, he was all “So…maybe?” and I said “You lied to me. I’ll never trust you!” Seriously. That cold.

And yet he tried AGAIN after the thing blew up, and I said no. Again.

And then after I picked Jay, there was a scene of me letting him down in a park. AGAIN AGAIN.

I guess persistence is a valuable trait in the CIA.

Yeah, I was pretty cool with the long slog.

I didn’t see the stillborn twin coming either. Nice twist.

Who did you end up with?

Anyway, yeah, Aiden’s still around. I think.

Yes, I was a wreck at first. Went out to the woods, lost my mind, did a lot of writing, was generally miserable and Aidenless. “I wished for a life without him, and now I’m unhappier than I’ve ever been.”

So I chose Jay, and awkward convo with Ryan, and then me pulling up on the bike on the ranch, smooch. Then cut to Jody in bed with MALE NUDITY. She gets out of bed and goes to look in the mirror. All of a sudden she can see her breath. Then Aiden POV but you can’t do anything. Jody’s all agitated. Back to Jody. Mirror fogs up. Aiden again (vrrmm whoosh vrmm) and something, presumably Aiden, writes on the steamed up mirror “Still here.” Jody smiles widely, then starts talking the future.

You didn’t get that? You missed MALE NUDITY and the “still here” scene?

It was reminiscent of the “You don’t need him you have me” deal.

Feminina:

Siiiiiigh…I missed the romantic ending. Siiiiiiiigh.

See, I chose Zoey. Got the letting-Ryan-down scene in the park, went back to hang with Stan and Company, who are doing really well. Never heard from Aiden again, got no romance, but Zoey…it turns out Zoey has eerie powers…and I’m training her, and together we will fight the ghosts after the ghostpocalypse I have seen in my visions.

Which somehow I am still ready to fight even though Aiden isn’t with me. I mean, I guess I’m still psychic and stuff, and that has to count for something.

It really does feel like a sequel teaser, but on reflection…I would certainly be inclined to play that game, but would it be anything like this game? With all the moodiness and the random QTEs and the shrugging? Based on the apocalyptic vision, it would seem more action-focused, and we’ve…had mixed feelings about this game’s action bits.

Although obviously she might not have had a specific vision about the moody bits, but that doesn’t mean they couldn’t be in there. So, yeah, I’d be very interested in a sequel, but perhaps one was never actually meant to be, and perhaps that’s OK.

Butch:

And you missed the MALE NUDITY!

Aww, how are Stan and the gang? How’d they end?

Really? Hmm. I stood alone against the end of times. And then, in the credits, I was standing with someone. I thought “Who the hell is that?” Now I know.

This also makes sense in that in the romance choices, there was Jay and Ryan and ZOE, not Tuesday. Hmm.

Here’s interesting, though: If you go BEYOND then it’s implied you tie yourself to Jody, a la Aiden. Hmm.

AND: You can die. Like, die die. Fail. In which the world ends and you reflect on failure as a lost soul.

You picked a good time to get good at QTEs.

We did have mixed feelings about the action. That we did. But, sequel wise, we can’t really judge a game that doesn’t officially exist.

I think a bigger problem is that whole “how do you make a sequel to a game that could have had 5495 different endings. THAT never goes well.

Time will tell. Plenty to play.

You know, maybe the whole “beyond/life” thing wasn’t so much about the people in beyond, so much as how much life kinda sucked. I thought it was telling that they made you walk by (and fight off) all the awful, icky stuff that happened. The kid you let down, the violence, the rape (you didn’t get that), the awful father, etc. It was a retrospective of a shitty life. There was none of the joy, none of the people. Nothing.

It really was “Life sucks. You REALLY want to choose it?”

Indeed, it’s kind of a trick that the “life” side looks like the monsters. We’re led to believe that the things on the other side are big, black and awful. Right? And yet, that’s how LIFE looks. Not all blue sky and wonderful.

Hmm.

Lot to unpack.

Feminina:

Meh. I bet it wasn’t REAL nudity. What…a chest? Maybe a buttock? Wevs.

It was an interesting comparison, there. Beyond looked so nice! And (my) Aiden was presumably there, having dissolved into golden sparkles in that meadow. And the dead people I left in my wake seemed so happy! Cole, and the mom I never knew, and the older guy I didn’t save, and grandma! Smiling so kindly at me!

Even Nathan and his wife and daughter seemed happy when they dissolved into the storm, although I didn’t see them later.

Meanwhile, the real world is a procession of miserable memories and dark swirling winds. And Ryan, muttering “I love you Jodie” over and over, which I have to say did rather touch me. Awwww…poor Ryan…I didn’t exactly break his heart, you know, I just kept putting him off, telling him I wasn’t ready to make a commitment.

I’m going to imagine that one day after the ghostpocalypse me and Zoey will seek him out, and I’ll be all “hey, wanna fight ghosts with us? And also make out?” and he’ll get up completely nude from the bathtub because I happened to catch him on wash day, and say “I was beginning to fear you wouldn’t come, but I never gave up hope! Let’s do it!”

I’ll send Zoey out of the room before he stands up.

It’s gonna be great.

Oh, and Stan and the gang were doing well! They had a place, indoors, and Stan was working, and Jimmy was clean and going to school…I think Walter and Tuesday also had jobs. They were a nice family.

Butch:

Awww, sweet. I’m glad. They were nice.

And, as for the nudity, there was buttocks and a very strategically crossed leg. But NUDITY!

Take what you can get.

When you get right down to it, that’s more MALE NUDITY than FEMALE NUDITY in this game.

Take it. But, damn you do have a plan, don’t you? Bathtub and all.

Yeah Beyond looked pretty good. And really, she’s all “there’s so much I haven’t done…I want to feel…” but why she couldn’t do that beyond? Cuz of our biases towards, like, not dying?

My Aiden went all sparkly too! Thus the surprise at the end.

I would’ve been so mad if QTE failure mattered at the end. Which it would’ve.

Feminina:

It really is pretty interesting the way they set us up through the entire game learning that failure doesn’t really matter (you might see or not see certain paths, but you’re still going to get to the same place), and then at the very end, reveal that “so it’s all led to this, and by the way, now EVERYTHING MATTERS.”

It was nice to see all the gang doing so well. It was a pretty nice ending, even if it lacked buttocks (siiiiigh). I wonder what happened if you went back to Ryan?

Or Cole? I bet HE didn’t get naked. (Ew, he’s like Jodie’s/our beloved uncle or something.)

Butch:

Still. Bet the man takes baths.

Ryan…probably a lower possibility of buttocks. After all, Jay was sleeping in the desert without air conditioning. I’m sure the MALE NUDITY was purely practical.

But damn, game. I’m not a woman, granted. But who sleeps in a bra in that kind of heat?

I DEMAND PRACTICALITY!

Sigh. Stupid game.

Indeed, interesting about the final twist of things suddenly mattering. Though I’m very glad I learned that particular tidbit from google and not from it actually happening to me during the game. Cuz that would’ve made me rather peeved.

Feminina:

Hey, it’s the desert. It cools way down at night. Be grateful she wasn’t in a flannel nightshirt. (As for Jay, well, he’s all manly, he probably sleeps naked year-round just to prove he doesn’t need any silly ‘additional warmth.)