Back in December, I tweeted this picture and said I planned to write a blog post about it, but I never went into detail about why (you can only say so much in 140 characters, and I wanted to save it for the post :3). And now that it’s almost February (o_o!) I'm finally explaining why this moment in a video game held such significance for me.
So. I was playing Jak 3, an fun albeit sometimes awkward action-adventure game.
The basic gist of Jak 3 for those who haven’t ever played it: you get missions ranging from simple tasks like ‘get first place in this race’ to life-endangering ones like ‘fly through these strategically placed acceleration rings to reach that volcano’ and ‘destroy the KG robot lab…which requires you to stay alive as robots try to shoot/electrocute you’.
Some of these missions are ridiculously easy. You look back after you’ve finished and you’re like, “Oh. It’s over already?” Other missions are…well…'challenging'. As in, it’s a challenge to not throw your controller across the room in a rage of anger because you’ve only tried to complete this mission 15 times and still haven’t succeeded.
I’m the type of person who’ll just keep going *no matter what*.
When I can’t complete a mission I eventually get frustrated, but I still don’t stop trying. It’s only when I reach the point that I no longer have this dauntless ambition to WIN that I know I’m dangerously close to reaching the limit of my patience…and when I reach this point, I know I need to shut my console down.
This is how I felt minutes before I took the above picture—like a volcano about to erupt.
My mission was to bring down the KG factory using a vehicle. At most, this should’ve been a moderately challenging mission…but I just could not win. My frustration was compounded by the fact that I was a gamer. I was a Jak series veteran. I had already won Jak 3 before. So why couldn’t I win??!
And then I saw this:
Versus this (which is to the left):
…and I had an EPIPHANY. I couldn’t win because I was going the wrong way.
You: Well, duh.
Me: Yeah, I thought it was weird that the developers expected me to maneuver the car through a moving conveyor belt onto a moving platform…
The saddest part: I should’ve realized it was the wrong way *anyway* because I was backtracking.
Here’s a mini-map of the situation: