Wednesday, August 15, 2007

A "Virtual" Minefield of Spoilers

I'm very excited about BioShock coming out next week. I downloaded the demo and played it through, and I'm planning on another playthrough in the next couple of days. Except for the demo being linear (which the final game is expected to address somewhat), I have no real complaints.

But after Toys 'R Us broke BioShock's streetdate, the Internet is now a minefield of spoilers. So much so that I'm taking every measure I can not to read anything about BioShock at all anymore.

Spoilers are a tricky thing. As my wife can attest, 99% of the time I spoil things myself. I look up a movie on IMDB so I know the twist (if I haven't guessed it already.) I read the last few pages of a book so I know how it ends. Most of the time, I don't really care.

But I realize I'm in the minority. There's people who spoil things maliciously, and I don't understand that. For example, before the Harry Potter book hit, I lost track of the number of posts on Something Awful designed to spoil the book. There's video of people walking into a bookstore and spoiling who died and didn't die to crowds of children. The "manliness" of what is essentially beating up a child notwithstanding, I don't get why people have to be killjoys about these kinds of things. Just because I know the ending doesn't mean I'm going to go ruin it for anyone else. It's tacky and it's selfish and it's probably a little sociopathic, not unlike hurting a defenseless creature or person.

At any rate, I enjoyed playing System Shock 2 a lot, and the "big reveal" about halfway through that game is easily one of my favorite moments in gaming, if not my top favorite. I expect BioShock to have similar reveals, and I don't want to fuck it up for myself by accidentally reading about it. In fact, if it happens with the lights off at 3 AM just like the reveal in System Shock 2 happened to me, all the better.

And for those of you who intentionally spoil things for people: you're a bunch of morons and to paraphrase Shepherd Book, there's a special place in hell for you along with child molesters and people who talk at the theater.

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