I paid fifteen bucks for this?

I bought my DC with a small stack of cheap games. All games for the DC are cheap these days. The most expensive game in my stack was Shenmue. I bought it on mdxi’s advice. He said it was an ambitious game, and that the hook was that you could just do whatever you wanted, whether or not you decided to further the plot.

I’ve always wanted a good game along those lines. I want to go out into the world and find the plot. I don’t want it delivered, and I don’t want to be forced to accept it.

The problem with Shenmue was that I /was/ delivered a plot, like so much pizza. Then, when I felt like I wanted to follow up, I couldn’t find the right thread to pull. I found myself wandering around town, petting kittens, buying a coke, talking to the neighborhood old ladies. I was surprised I never had to stop and take a dump, but that’s probably just because I didn’t play long enough.

I was really tempted to mark this story a SUCK. I’m going to be strong, though: when I finish my current rentals, I’ll give Shenmue another try. So many people talk about how the game ruled, and I’d like to be able to believe them. I just don’t, so far.

Written on January 7, 2003
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