Well, well, look who’s come crawling back. Most of you already know who I am, but for those who need a regal introduction, I am the Ominous Voice, here to slay the various demons that wreak havoc upon our video game world and call out the oddities and the inexplicable phenomena that plagues our beloved games. But I’ll tell ya: it’s been pretty rough this past month, what with me sittin’ around the campfire with my Wii U, just staring at it, wondering where all the damn games are! Seriously, gimme something to work with. Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate Doubleplus Gordita Taco Combo Edition isn’t going to cut it. I gave up Capcom when they decided Mega Man should be massacred with a digital chainsaw, so they ain’t gettin’ my questionably-earned money.
But we’re not here to lament the Wii U. We can save that for another day. We’re here to lampoon the heck out of video games. Today, I thought I’d bring up the concept of–
JEFF: You dastard!
OMINOUS VOICE: Errr…ladies and gentlemen, the clearly alive and well Jeff Day, my former comrade of “Gamera Obscura“! Wh-what brings you to our beloved column?
JEFF: You locked me in a presumably discarded medical chamber and dumped me in a landfill in Peoria, Arizona!
OMINOUS VOICE: At least you were close to home!
JEFF: I’m Canadian, you jerk! Luckily, the security latch on the medical device was dysfunctional and I was able to bust out of its sturdy craftsmanship in a few hours. I’ve been spending the last six months wandering my way back to GameCola Headquarters, eating any old scraps I could find, fending off stray cats as I curled up in cold alleyways to sleep.
OMINOUS VOICE: Well, we’re glad to have you back, although you stink.
JEFF: And now that I am here again, I’m taking back my monthly column! I’m taking back what’s rightfully mine! Your days of working here are finished, Ominous Voice! I’m going to start a new column about horticulture in video games! I’ll call it “Leafing Through Your Game Library.”
OMINOUS VOICE: That sounds terrible.
JEFF: Oh yeah? Well, en garde! *stab*
OMINOUS VOICE: Ohhh, you got me right in the eyeball!
JEFF: Uh…Ominous Voice…why are you glowing red like that?
OMINOUS VOICE: I’m glowing red? Whoa, so I am! That must mean that things are about to get ugly! As you know, whenever a boss (such as myself) loses a certain percentage of his or her hitpoints, they become more powerful. Sometimes they even turn red, but most of the time, they just whip out the big guns in their weakened state.
JEFF: Why is that?
OMINOUS VOICE: I really have no idea! Doesn’t make much sense, does it? You would think that when someone is injured, they have less strength to fight, but in fact, in video game logic, just the opposite is often true! If you, a real person, only had 1 HP remaining, you’d basically be one poke away from a visit with the Grim Reaper. In a video game, it turns out you can actually be just as rough, if not more so, thanks to this peculiar golden rule in many games. Remember King K. Rool in the Donkey Kong Country games? The more you stomp on the obese lizard, the faster he runs! It’s crazy enough that a character with a belly the size of Cleveland can actually get off the recliner and shuffle around, but to get faster the more people jump on his puny head? That’s just bizarre.
Doesn’t end there, either. Remember Johnny from Super Mario RPG, the shark guy who thought he was all that? After you start whappin’ him in the gills for a while, he turns red like he was being boiled and antes up his attacks! Oddly enough, you have to drop everyone except Mario from the fight, making things much more difficult. And let’s not forget the popular MMORPG, Final Fantasy XI! …Er, on second thought, let’s try and forget it. But in that game that shall not be mentioned ever again, the creepers and baddies that try and whisk away your life and precious Gil get stronger when their health drops down to 25%, throwing more crazy attacks in the process. Shouldn’t they be tending to wounds? Trying to flee? Pleading for their lives in exchange for delicious Chocobo-flavoured rations?
JEFF: Uh, hello? We’re having a duel here.
OMINOUS VOICE: Oh, right. *stab*
JEFF: Unnhhhh…you got me… This is the big one! I’m comin’, Elizabeth! … … …
OMINOUS VOICE: Well, thanks for coming to our column and, apparently, makeshift gladiator tournament. Next time on “That’s So Cliché”, I’ll show you how to make a Gold Helm out of ordinary household items!