Kudos Joaquin Phoenix on winning the Oscars! And every other award for Best Male Performance, really. The societies are so ruptured today, and he managed to capture it so well, it was the first R-rated movie to cross the $1B threshold in the box-office. Bravo!
But I hope they won’t let this cultural phenomenon stop there. No, I’m not talking about sequels and prequels to follow, but video-games. I’d really love to see a game taking advantage of the latest in gaming tech (ray-tracing, AI) come to life, after or inspired by Joker! And I’m thinking of a “Fighting” game, a la Street Fighter and Mortal Kombat.
Indeed, Street Fighter II is what made us know and love the genre, and Mortal Kombat was the “Fatality” moment. The series were very successful and popular, until Tekken and the 3D movement in the video-games. That was because 3D didn’t really improve the Fighting Games as much as it did with First-Person-Shooter (Doom, Quake) and Real-Time-Strategy (Dune, Command & Conquer Red Alert) genres. As a result, we’ve witnessed a flock of new games in these two fields rather than Fighting.
On the other hand, the latest reincarnations of Mortal Kombat and Street Fighter are super-expensive titles with not so much innovation, but huge advertising money poured into with the belief that there is a loyal audience (including me) who will buy the game no matter what. It’s almost like paying tribute for the buyers, for the good times they let us have in our childhood. Most won’t even touch these games after one play or two.
Ray-Tracing and the new AI technologies (spearheaded by Nvidia) may change this. We may see even a more realistic set of visual effects, including visible face/body deformations, bleeding, and tiredness with every kick and punch taken by the opponent.
Now back to the game, if history is any guide, this game should be extremely controversial to become a breakout success. The Joker character (or its alikes) and excellent 3D effects are a good start, but they’re not enough. Mortal Kombat (for its time) and Grand Theft Auto were so controversial, and they are what inspires me here.
So here are a few ideas to make the game unique and controversial:
- The characters should be realistic. No magicians, no aliens, please! Just psychos… We do have many of them here on Earth.
- The scenario may play out in a mental facility after a doomsday event, possibly.
- No exaggerated number of characters either please. Ideally eight characters from diverse racial and sexual backgrounds including;
- An ex-ISIS fighter
- A bipolar; her stamina alters during the game.
- Psychotic characters like Joker.
- Sexually-deranged characters with their odd kinks and fetishes.
Most moves should be ordinary punches and kicks, with only a limited number of character-inspired ones.
During the fight, they should exchange all kinds of insults, not just a pre-recorded dull set, and we should hear heavy metal music (Rammstein, Lordi) in the background.
Despite all the realism, a Fatality-like ending should not be skipped. But no animality or any other spoiled version, please. Just one fatality per characters would be good enough. To protect my image of a sane person (if it’s still there,) I won’t comment further on the potential moves there, but the list of characters above should give you an idea.
Last but not least, no two rounds, please. Just one round would suffice… That’s again for the sake of realism. If the character is beaten up once, what’s the point of bringing her up all fresh and new shortly after?
Don’t get me wrong! As a responsible adult myself, I don’t endorse this. Heck, I even tell my nephew not to play Grand Theft Auto, and I have a strong feeling the massacre that took place in a New Zealand Mosque had the traces of a madman’s mind who played too much Grand Theft Auto. But like it or not, this is how one separates itself from the noise, so don’t be surprised if big studios are already working on a title like this!