Alright, this one’s cutting it close, and is easily the least bad seeing as Earthbound does kind of make a big deal about how much the main character, Ness (by default), misses his folks.
Heck, getting homesick is a status ailment!
It can only be cured by giving your mom a call and hearing her warm voice cheering you on in your quest to save the world from the forces of . . .
. . . what were the badguys in Earthbound again?
Oh yeah. Weird.
Ness definitely loves his mom and the game shows it. So he's definitely not ungrateful to her.
It’s his dad I feel for.
How much money do you think it costs to bankroll saving the world? Especially if you and your friends are saving it not from pollution, ninjas or a Bond Super villain, but from a gods-to-honest time traveling alien overlord!
Well if you’ve played any RPG, you know that the cost of saving the world is roughly equivalent to a LOT of f*ck-tons of metric sh*t-loads of moolah. Magical +1 Longswords of Slime Splitting and Mirrored Diamond Armor of Inscrutable Decision Making aren’t cheap ya know.
Gotta have that bling on if you want to save the world, yo!
So what happens when an RPG developer decides to bring some logic to the table and ensures that enemies don’t drop money? Especially doing it in 1994, way before it was cool?
Earthbound had a solution: for every monster killed/bully defeated/boss vanquished, your dad wired money into your checking account, which you could then be withdrawn at an ATM.
How did he know that you just succeeded in battle? I don’t know. If the game took place today I’m sure Ness and company would be tweeting all their little brawls, but the game clearly takes place in199X – as in some point in the 90’s.
Must've been on one of these badboys . . which again, who's paying for? That's right, dad!
How does he have literally hundreds of thousands of dollars to wire to his son? He must be working multiple top level jobs till he falls over in exhaustion!
Some dad's do it for their kids on world saving quests, others do it to pay for ponies.
But does Ness ever call his dad? Tell him he appreciates all the perfectly timed and constant no questions asked financial support?
Noooooo. What the hell Ness?
So I hope the kid is happy with peaking early, 'cause there's no way in hell his family's got the money to send him to college!
Rarely in games do we ever see the true life consequences of what happens when the good guy kills the bad guy, other than perhaps having to run from the exploding building/underground base/planet perhaps.
Cause you know, that happens all the time.
Then SNK released their counter-punch to Capcom's Street Fighter 3: The New Generation, a little fighting game most of you reading probably haven't heard of: Garou: Mark of the Wolves, which oddly enough means "Hungry Wolf": Mark of the Wolves (redundant enough for you?), they answered a little question about just such an instance.
At the end of Fatal Fury, the main Hero/Protagonist (not to be confused with the one from Snow Crash) Terry Bogard put an end to evil crime lord/martial arts master Geese Howard by throwing him out a window. He got better, but eventually, finally was killed off for real (we think).
Or at least, his body hasn't been found. Yet.
The point is, his young son, Rock (seriously who picks the names in the Howard family?) is left all alone, a seeming orphan now that the good guys have murdered his dad. He might have been a jerk who likes to kidnap folks and go after demonic Orochi powers, but he was still all the family the kid had.
So, proving that he actually is a semi-decent person, and having read a comic book at some point in his life, Terry does the noble thing and adopts the little tyke.
Seriously, you do not want to have frigging Super Powered Kung-fu Batman on your ass fifteen years down the line.
Now this IS a little weird, having your father's killer become your dad. But by all accounts, Terry turns out to be pretty good at the job. There are all sorts of pictures showing the two of them having a grand old time.
Aww! Thanks Dad-by-murder!
So ten years pass, and 'cause Terry's probably not the brightest bulb in the box, he teaches lil' Rock how to fight and all his moves. Plus somehow Rock also retains a bunch of his dad's special attacks through . . . I dunno genetic memory? Does it really matter? I mean these guys shoot energy waves and Rock can create angel wings when he wants! Then they both enter the latest super big fighting tournament to hit Southtown and Rock confronts the big bad guy and . . . immediately abandons his adoptive dad the second the villain even alludes to him mom.
Really SNK? You spent like, what, three games (four?) showing us Rock as he grew up, constantly spending time with Terry? Making a huge point that Terry was a better dad than Geese could have ever been, and the second some villain claims to be the kid's uncle, and claims to know where his mom is, he abandons said awesome adoptive dad? Just like that, a snap of the fingers, then he's gone?
Besides, isn't the finger snap more Kyo's thing?
I mean, HE'S A VILLAIN! Ten gets you one these are lies to save his skin. Even if they aren't, I'm pretty sure Terry would go with you dude. You don't need to hang around "Obviously Evil Guy Holding a Martial Arts Tournament #87" in order to find this out.
So while we know this was just a way for SNK to eventually lead into a huge mega epic battle between Rock and Terry, filled with "You killed my father!" "I AM your father!" Shakespearean drama, we'll never find out. There isn't another Garou coming because Americans never play SNK games.
Oh wait I'm sorry. This is the Fatal Fury universe. Let me rephrase that.
Now, NPC’s being rather ungrateful in an RPG is nothing new.
I mean, how many times has the following happened to your RPG hero?
Go into town. Despite very important main quest needing attention, listen to tales of woe and misery with subtle implications of rewards to anyone who could solve the problems causing woe and misery. Solve said problems. Find out that you were either conned by townfolks, or they want to renege on the promised rewards.
Best case scenario? They simply thank you briefly before immediately forgetting you ever did anything for them. If you ever buy stuff from them later, they will NOT remember that you saved their orphanage from the slime mold assault.
If Rodney Dangerfield were a gamer (and still alive) I’m pretty sure the plight of the RPG hero would have been worked into his act.
Who here tonight is from the town of Midgar? You sir? Well lemme tell ya, those Turks! they got no respect I tell ya, no respect at all. Tarantino called them once, he want's his style back!
In Fallout 3, this is pretty par for the course, especially seeing as not only is it an RPG where the NPCs won’t remember anything except their very specific quests and whether you did them or not, but it’s also a post apocalyptic wasteland where everyone’s pretty much only looking out for themselves.
No more so than in the town of Little Lamplight, which, when you eventually wander into it, you discover is a city inhabited entirely by children. Children who for the most part run the gamut of helpfulness and friendliness that occurs in any RPG village, but then there’s "Mayor" MacCready.
This little punk. He does nothing but swear up a storm (cause swearing soo hardcore when you’re ten), hassle you and refuse to give you the time of day. And you totally need his help too. So you pretty much have to earn the little bugger’s respect.
But even when you do, it’s a flippant, "whatever, I could do that" manner that you just want to pull out your gun and shoot him – quest line be damned!
This little SOB just brings all the hate back from Fallout 2 and those damn child pickpockets!
There are no images of those little bastards that aren't a pixellated mess. Here's The Artful Dodger instead!
So you probably do shoot this pig-faced punk! Because this is Fallout damnit! You can kill anyone if they tick you off.
. . . except for kids.
You can’t kill this little prick because he’s a kid? What the hell Bethesda?
And don’t tell me it’s to avoid some sort of controversy either! You can enslave other kids in the game and sell them over at Paradise Falls, that’s WAY worse than just killing this super annoying half-pint of ass.
Aw they totally did this just to screw with the player didn’t they?
Just for that Bethesda, I’m totally not getting Skyrim!
So when you're dad has to go away on business, what do you do? Do you mope away and feel sad for a while? Sure alright, I guess a little bit of that is OK.
What about when your dad's an Assassin?
And what about when his business is getting revenge on the A-Holes who killed your mom?
Are you still going to mope about and complain when he doesn't come home? No? Well good, then you have a good sense of perspective. And you're not Kolyat Krios.
Kolyat here decides that the best way to honor his father Thane's wishes, who of course does not want his kid to follow him in the family business, is to . . . follow his dad into the family business. Yup! He decides to become a hitman like his pops!
OK so I'll give the kid some points for having balls. I mean, if you're copying you're dad just to spite him and in doing so are trying to become a killer for hire, that's at least kind of badd-ass, even if it is for a completely petty and entitled reason.
Here's the thing Kolyat. You aren't your dad. You just aren't that cool.
Go get a nice stable job. Accountant maybe?
So anyway. You (as Commander Shepard), and Thane go to save Thane's idiot ingrate of a son. If you do, he feels bad and he gets to spend some time in jail thinking about what a brat he's been. If you fail, let's just say he doesn't get as much time to reflect on his past mistakes . . .
Wait . . . this feels familiar.
Didn't like the exact same thing in KOTOR? Just replace "Thane" with "Carth", "Kolyat" with "Dustil", and "Assassin" with "Sith"?
Then there are all the other characters with daddy issues . . . both Miranda and Jacob certainly have them in ME2, and heck, Ashley has a few in ME1.
Or what about the fact that in Baldur's Gate, you're essentially rebelling against your dad too?
Mind you, your "dad" is basically the devil . . . but I digress.
So what's up BioWare? Why are all your games basically "Daddy Issues + Space/Dungeons & Dragons"?
Hmm . . . wasn't BioWare started by some Doctors? Like medical doctors?
So when Mr. Skullhead-with-a-gym-membership aka Shao Khan took over Outworld â way back in the prologue â he may have killed a few folks.
Canât make an omelet without murdering some royalty? Am I right?
Specifically, he murdered the ever holy hell out of the "Edenians", who Iâll bet were living in a perfect little garden-world called "Edenia" that I'm sure was filled with unending bliss.
Or perhaps just a LOT of BDSM. It would explain the "royal attire" at least.
OK well scratch that. He murdered most of them. One of them, Sindel (the queen of the Edenians as it turns out), fled to earth like a Battlestar Galactica cast member and promptly committed a death curse to protect our normal human asses.
Thanks Sindel, you're the greatest! But you also kinda creep me out, what with the living hair, banshee voice and "Grandma Stripper" outfit and all.
But some other Edenians survived as well, namely Kitana, Sindel's daughter and rightful heir to the throne, but under the watchful eye of, survey says: Shao Khan!
Yup that's right, Shao Khan raised Kitana as his own daughter. And like Rock Howard above . . . she eventually turns on the man who raised her. But only after she finds out about the whole "not really my dad" thing.
Here though, I guess it's a little more OK. I mean, her "father" has a skull for a face. It's not like that's ever a good sign.
But the thing of it is, in Kitana's case (as well as in the next entry), it's not like she knows anything else. Her dad is no doubt a terrible, terrible parental figure. I'm sure he never posted her macaroni art on the royal refrigerator and he probably beat her whenever she did anything wrong or he just felt like it.
King of Outworld, King of Negative Reinforcement! "You Suck!" is the closest this guy gets to a compliment.
So while not a good dad AT ALL, he still provided for her when he could have just as easily killed her at any point in time. Knowing the truth as to how he became her dad doesn't matter as much as him watching out for you for 10,000 years does it? By the way, that's no exaggeration, Shao Khan apparently has been caring for Kitana for 10,000 years, seeing as that's how old she is and she didn't know of her birthright.
10,000 years of parent-hood! You'd think that'd count for something.
At least MK9 makes it clear that she only betrays him after he gives a big evil monologue saying how much he despises her, but in the original game . . . it just seems like an overreaction. A rather DELAYED overreaction at that.
I mean 5,000 years . . . OK I can buy that. 7,000, maybe. 8,500 on the outside chance. But 10,000? I don't care who my real dad is, that's just an investment of time you don't back out on.
We all know that by and large, vampires are evil. We especially know Dracula is evil. Of course, by "we" I mean humanity, not Twilight fans.
The Count’s son, Alucard isn’t human though (and I assume not a big Stephanie Meyer reader), so why does he know that? Heck, even if he does, why the hell isn’t he just as evil?
This is something that’s actually bothered me for a while (well since Symphony of the Night came out anyway).
In Symphony, we find out that Alucard’s mom was loved very deeply by Drac, his dad. It was a genuine longing between two people that produced a child that had parents that cared for him. We also discover that she was burned at the stake for being a witch!
You know, shacking up with Dracula may have been a factor in the townsfolk's decision. Just saying.
And here's where the main point of contention lies between Dracula and Alucard. Al's mom Lisa, being a very kindhearted soul didn't want Drac to Attack Back - that is to say, she would rather he forgive the humans, for they knew not what they did. Heck she was very pro "let's get along guys" which again, is a the noble spirit that embiggens the smallest of men.
Dracula though, get's a little pissed when the townsfolk kill his bride, and decides to go on a bit of murder spree. But then - HE'S DRACULA. What did you expect?
That's the main point where they disagree. Whether or not seeking vengeance against the (admittedly) inferior race of humanity for murdering your mom is alright.
I mean there doesn't seem to be any other cause of Al's angsty "time to commit some good ol' Patricide" the second the next Belmont comes along, one with the unlikely name of Trevor as it turns out.
Of course looking at Trevor, maybe Alucard's just into leather?
Like, I know that it's your mom's mantra and that you want to respect her memory, but what about the memory of your dad? Even if you disagree on this subject, you decide to murder him over it? How is that reasonable? This guy raised you!
But then I guess Alucard gets a little nuts when people besmirch his mom's memory . . .
. . . so it's consistent at least. Still seem a bit extreme though. Or maybe not. I mean, I figure Alucard of all people must know that his pops has Contractual Immortality right? So maybe him murdering Dracula is just sort of the equivalent of stealing your dad's car on his bowling night?
But then, when his dad is reincarnated as a Latin teen sensation Soma Cruz. . .
Who is also obviously a pimp
Alucard does everything in his power to keep his dad from coming back as his dad. So no, he really does want the old man gone. Hmm. Maybe this has another root cause?
I blame Drac's inability to properly name his progeny.
Seriously, is Drac like the George Foreman of vampires? He just gave his boy his own name backwards, why? That's retarded. What if Lisa had twins? You name one Alucard, the other . . . what? Asil? Aludrac? Cardula? Dracula 2? What if it was a girl?
Kinda hard to tell as it is though.
So remember folks, when naming your kid, pick something good. A boy named Sue is a boy who murders his father repeatedly over time.