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Thread: Six Days in Fallujah - TFPS from ex-Bungie devs

  1. #1
    PC Gamering Smartey Man
    I <3 consoles and gamepads

    Registered: Aug 2007
    Location: New Zealand

    Six Days in Fallujah - TFPS from ex-Bungie devs

    Hot damn, this looks like SWAT 4 meets Brothers in Arms, in terms of features. We haven't had a well budgeted TFPS with a solid SP campaign in well over a decade.

    Developer Highwire Games seems to have some serious talent.
    The new developer tasked with creating the game is Highwire Games, a company co-founded by three people, most notably Jaime Griesemer and Marty O’Donnell. Griesemer previously served as a game designer at Bungie and Sucker Punch Productions, working on the Halo and Infamous franchises.
    https://archive.ph/n7HhU
    The core gameplay experience is looking and sounding good, that's all that matters to me.

    I'm actually happy now that we didn't get the original 3rd person view game announced in 2009. First person view is way more immersive IMO.

  2. #2
    https://twitter.com/theserfstv/statu...78231961997314

    "We did nothing wrong, war is glorious! USA! USA! USA!"

  3. #3
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    Boooo to this jingoistic propaganda crap

  4. #4
    Taking the Death Toll
    Registered: Aug 2004
    Location: they/them mayhem
    Christ. This almost seems more masturbatory and exploitative than the modern warfare Medal of Honor games. This would have been tasteless in 2009; it's just ghastly in 2021. Who would even buy this other than reactionary dorks?

  5. #5
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Ireland
    Are they really making a game glorifying a war that was started under false pretences by some of the worst war criminals of the 21st Century?

  6. #6
    Member
    Registered: Dec 2006
    Location: Washington DC
    Color me surprised to see this getting a more negative reaction than the game industry's usual whitewashed allegories of real conflicts.

  7. #7
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Ireland
    To be fair, I have zero interest in this kind of real-conflict shooter, it's really just the title that makes it a bit blatant.

  8. #8
    Member
    Registered: Nov 2003
    I think you folks are kneejerking over the game's title rather than any actual content.

  9. #9
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2002
    Location: Maupertuis
    Quote Originally Posted by DaBeast View Post
    ...you folks are kneejerking...


    Before things become angry, impromptu and careless remarks are entirely fine. They get a thread going. Now, if an argument starts, then people should start taking care in their replies. Until then though, keep on keeping on, you beautiful taffers.

  10. #10
    Member
    Registered: Jun 2002
    Location: melon labneh
    now is honestly a low point in my love of video games

  11. #11
    Member
    Registered: Sep 2001
    Location: Land of the crazy
    I've got to agree, this is pretty distasteful. And it seems like a really niche market to be going after. I read that Konami abandoned this 10 years ago. Can't imagine why...
    It seems like the kind of pet project that some dude always wanted to do but everyone else at the studio thought it was a bad idea.
    Now they have another publisher. But who is Victura?
    Last edited by heywood; 26th Mar 2021 at 14:06.

  12. #12
    Taking the Death Toll
    Registered: Aug 2004
    Location: they/them mayhem
    Quote Originally Posted by DaBeast View Post
    I think you folks are kneejerking over the game's title rather than any actual content.
    And what, pray tell, is the "actual" content?

  13. #13
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2016
    Location: NYC, The Real America.
    Ehhh, SWAT4 looked good artstyle-wise (very effective use of colored lighting) and is the peak of tactical shooters, only really matched by Raven Shield. Not to mention that weird Ken Levine-touch that shook things up (like cults and serial killer levels) and a killer soundtrack.

    This Six Days looks really bland visually and seems like alot of it is just riding the coattails of controversy.

  14. #14
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    Quote Originally Posted by heywood View Post
    But who is Victura?
    It's a company formed by Peter Tamte, the CEO of Atomic Games (the studio previously working on the game) and a former Bungie executive.

  15. #15
    Member
    Registered: Sep 2001
    Location: Land of the crazy
    Thanks. So I guess this is some weird-ass labor of love thing for him.

  16. #16
    Member
    Registered: Nov 2003
    Quote Originally Posted by june gloom View Post
    And what, pray tell, is the "actual" content?
    A tactical FPS set in a real world battle within a real world conflict. I didn't get any stereotypical America FUCK YEA! vibes from it. It has it's marketing wank, don't get me wrong, but its par for the course with video games and I'm sure you know this. There was no political message in the video, nothing pro republican, pro-spreading democracy etc. There was an actual effort, small perhaps, maybe a token, but it was an effort to show that there were two sides and both felt they were in the right.

    I've vague memories of a glut of bargain bin trash games based on the conflict, while it was happening, these were clearly cheap dirt games built to cash in on sentiment of the time. Despite first glance appearance, this game doesn't appear to be in the same category, though that name does kind of bother me a bit. It's likely part of the games focus/branding on the appeal of realism, which is kind of what TFPS people look for.

  17. #17
    Member
    Registered: Dec 2006
    Location: Washington DC
    Quote Originally Posted by DaBeast View Post
    I didn't get any stereotypical America FUCK YEA! vibes from it.
    Frankly, I can't remember Call of Duty ever billing itself as survival horror, or having interviews with veterans talking about being scared to die on their kid's birthday. The industry standard is stoic grizzled special forces operators fighting evil caricature terrorist supervillains (Middle Eastern, Russian, or both) while rock music blares; pretty much War Is Fun writ large. So this is at least big step up from that.

    What concerns me is the developers' statements about the game being about the experience on the ground rather than politics, and using that as a justification to shy away from depicting the civilian casualties (~40% of all deaths) and war crimes that occurred in the battle- a sanitized, tacitly pro-US portrayal.

    But hey, it's not like Genericistan shooters are hot to trot on depicting Western forces committing war crimes either. So if gamers feel that whitewashing a specific battle is egregious, but effectively whitewashing the entirety of Western involvement in the Middle East is fine, maybe it's time for some introspection. The industry really loves having its cake and eating it too; cashing in on the aesthetics and themes of real-world conflicts while pretending to be wholly fictional and thus avoid engaging with problematic truths.

    Maybe the civilian confrontation at the end of the trailer is a hint that they're going to be complete in their depiction of the conflict after all and I'll be pleasantly surprised.

    Quote Originally Posted by heywood View Post
    It seems like the kind of pet project that some dude always wanted to do but everyone else at the studio thought it was a bad idea.
    Wikipedia says that the developers were originally making training tools for the USMC, the Marines they were working with got deployed, and when the Marines came back they suggested making a game based on their experiences. So yeah, sounds like a passion project.

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by catbarf View Post
    But hey, it's not like Genericistan shooters are hot to trot on depicting Western forces committing war crimes either. So if gamers feel that whitewashing a specific battle is egregious, but effectively whitewashing the entirety of Western involvement in the Middle East is fine, maybe it's time for some introspection. The industry really loves having its cake and eating it too; cashing in on the aesthetics and themes of real-world conflicts while pretending to be wholly fictional and thus avoid engaging with problematic truths.
    On the other hand, those generic Tacticool FPS games don't directly link themselves to a war with several major atrocities against civilians and then have the devs go "We don't need to acknowledge those atrocities, just go bang bang on some designate bad guys."

  19. #19
    Member
    Registered: Nov 2003
    Quote Originally Posted by WingedKagouti View Post
    On the other hand, those generic Tacticool FPS games don't directly link themselves to a war with several major atrocities against civilians and then have the devs go "We don't need to acknowledge those atrocities, just go bang bang on some designate bad guys."
    Are there any games based on real wars that do?

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by DaBeast View Post
    Are there any games based on real wars that do?
    There's a difference between not talking about something at all and actively saying "This is not important, look at the pretty colours instead."

  21. #21
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    Quote Originally Posted by DaBeast View Post
    Are there any games based on real wars that do?
    Yes, of course. There are quite a few games that explore the civilian perspective of armed conflict. Valiant Hearts, This War of Mine, Through The Darkest of Times... Hell, you could even make an argument that Spec Ops: The Line was basically all about modern military adventurism of the US.

    Not saying that all these games are necessarily great at depicting war, but they are considerably more nuanced than making "fun combat puzzles" out of breaching civilian buildings and trying to make war not political.

  22. #22
    Member
    Registered: Sep 2001
    Location: Land of the crazy
    Quote Originally Posted by catbarf View Post
    Frankly, I can't remember Call of Duty ever billing itself as survival horror, or having interviews with veterans talking about being scared to die on their kid's birthday. The industry standard is stoic grizzled special forces operators fighting evil caricature terrorist supervillains (Middle Eastern, Russian, or both) while rock music blares; pretty much War Is Fun writ large. So this is at least big step up from that.
    On the other hand, I think it's a step down.

    Grizzled special forces operators fighting evil caricature terrorist supervillains is a power fantasy, not that far off of James Bond and Jason Bourne.

    It's one thing to create a fictional fantasy setting with a super-human protagonist fighting with the good guys against the evil terrorists. People enjoy that because it's escapeism. But it's a different thing to suggest that this fantasy is actually accessible in the real world - just join the Marines and you could do this too. That's what I find distasteful about shooters set in real events that are pretending to be realistic, and this one goes the extra mile in pretending to be realistic by using actual Marines who were there in their marketing.

    Whitewashing, one-sidedness, politics, etc. are secondary issues. No matter how hard they try, video games can never give anyone even a small taste of what it's like to be in a war. And they wouldn't ever try because it wouldn't be fun. But here we have a game, that I presume will be escapist fun for the people who play it, set in a real world battle with the Marines who were really there helping to sell it as the real thing. That's what I find distasteful about it.

  23. #23
    Level 10,000 achieved
    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Finland
    Quote Originally Posted by DaBeast View Post
    There was no political message in the video
    What. Ok, look. The whole thing is incredibly skewed in favor or portraying the Americans as the heroes. When they do intervew some Iraqis the reason they give for staying in the city is "stubborness", with no mention of the fact that adult males were forbidden from leaving the city. The US soldiers are humanised with stories of how they missed their kids birthdays and the Iraqis are dehumanised to the point of being PROCEDURALLY GENERATED. The real geography of Fallujah is so inconsequential that they're gonna just go ahead and procedurally generate buildings in the name of replayability. The only way you can look at this video and think it has no political message is if you already agree 100% with the politics behind it.

    If you truly are interested in hearing the perspective from the other side, Rami Ismail did a very good video+twitter thread digging into all the issues with it.

  24. #24
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    Yeah, from the promotion materials to the developer statements, so far everything seems to point to that it is pretty much the type of game Spec Ops: The Line was ruthlessly eviscerating.

    Now all that's left to do is for someone to make a mod to put the Spec Ops loading screen tips in the game and the irony is complete.

  25. #25
    Member
    Registered: Dec 2006
    Location: Washington DC
    Quote Originally Posted by heywood View Post
    But it's a different thing to suggest that this fantasy is actually accessible in the real world - just join the Marines and you could do this too.
    Does the presentation of the game actually strike you as a desirable fantasy? With the Marines describing in detail how many of their unit died, and the devs billing it as 'survival horror', it doesn't sound like the design goal is to make you think the Second Battle of Fallujah was awesome and encourage you to enlist.

    That's in stark contrast to contemporary military games that build power fantasies out of recognizable organizations and conflicts behind paper-thin aliases. We're not talking about James Bond stopping a space laser; games that leverage the appearance and participants of modern conflicts are inherently commenting on them even if they don't explicitly identify locales. The US Army is actively using Call of Duty as a recruitment tool- selling power fantasy as attainable reality is the bread and butter of recruitment propaganda. Writing it off as harmless escapism seems downright apologetic.

    I think depicting real conflicts should be within the purview of videogames if handled properly, just as it is with film. Games have the potential to use player agency to make them confront uncomfortable truths in a more personal way than films; they don't have to all be fun power fantasy. A game with an honest portrayal of the war crimes, that treats Iraqis as real people rather than dehumanized targets, that acknowledges civilian casualties and the decisions made by Coalition forces (see: bombing mosques), would be a lot closer to Spec Ops: The Line than to Call of Duty. But if they're omitting all of those elements, then even if the portrayal of life as a Marine is authentically awful, it's at best half-truth.
    Last edited by catbarf; 28th Mar 2021 at 21:04.

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