Monday, October 08, 2007

My sense of accomplishment is completely divorced from the actual importance of the achievement

I took a break from playing Half-Life 2 a little while ago. The game is incredible -- I'd almost say it's better than the original, which is one of the best games ever made. The scope is bigger, the battles more strategic, the music is good, and the story is engrossing; seriously, play this game if you haven't already.

While taking a break, I began contemplating the idea of Half-Life 2 entering the Holy Pantheon. I then thought about the other games on that list, the ones I haven't played in ages. So I fired up my NES emulator and started playing a few old Nintendo games. I played a little Super Mario, a little Ninja Gaiden 2. I tried to play a few wrestling games, but the ROMs were corrupted. I even decided to play the old warhorse, that bane of my existence, Fester's Quest. Fester's Quest, of course, is the ludicrously difficult game that has been kicking my ass for fifteen years now.

So, what the hell? I loaded it and played for a little while.

And, holy shit--

I beat Fester's Quest!

As predicted, I made a fool of myself jumping around my apartment like an idiot.

It would help here to explain why the game is so damn hard -- because it was obviously made for about $500 over a three-day weekend. The game is so rampantly buggy that you'll occasionally run into spots where enemies will respawn infinitely, and if you don't have lightning reflexes, you'll be overrun and killed (since it only takes two hits to kill you).

But I overcame all of that. I picked up the two extra health bars, which I'd never found before (that was helpful). I beat the fourth boss, which was the farthest I'd been before. I destroyed the fifth boss (really, it was pathetically simple). I mastered the final labyrinth -- you get a item late in the game that summons Lurch to destroy all enemies on the screen; I used every goddamn one of them.

And I marched up to the final boss, and defeated it with...relative ease. And that was that -- Fester's Quest is my cross to bear no more.

That screenshot I saved? That's all the reward I get. That, and my sense of relief.

But you know what? It turns's not really all that hard -- it's just badly, horribly designed. It's broken, to tell the truth.

Now, this? This is hard.

Fester's Quest? Not so much. Will that stop me from being overly elated at its demise? Of course not.

Now playing: Ringo Starr - I'm the Greatest
via FoxyTunes

1 comment:

  1. That video made me sit through 7 and a half minutes before experiencing that WHAT THE FUCK and will surely have me going the full 18:50 to see how it all ends.

    I weep for that player.