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Opinion: Azure StrikerGunvolt is Too Topical/Political for its own Good

Discussion in 'Video Games' started by Mandouga, Feb 23, 2017.

  1. Mandouga

    Mandouga Well-Known Member

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    First of all, full disclosure: I don't have either game, but I do know the story of both.

    They really took a lopsided approach at trying to address racism and prejudice (and the blind hatred and ignorance both can create) by portraying Acura (Japanese version) / Copen (English version) as a "straw racist" (I think that's right phrase) who...


    In other words, he is blatantly portrayed as literally being that ignorant/blind to what it's really all about. Anyway you slice it, though, it's clear that even there was to be a third game, this story does not have a happy ending. In fact, this story probably never should have happened in the first place, "from a certain point of view"*.

    In my honest opinion, this really hurts both games, and takes away from what they're supposed to be about: games that play similarly to Mega Man, but with a twist. It ends up overpowering all the other parts of the games, including the gameplay parts. In other words, in the long run, the gameplay and the fun factor are both made irrelevant by the way it tries to address these issues. One could even say that these games are the equivalent of TV shows having "very special episodes". I think that if Acura / Copen had been portrayed a little more fairly, and at least open to idea of adepts and non-adepts coexisting (something that Gunvolt himself gets, among other things), it might make both games a little more worth playing in the long run, but that's just me. One thing is for sure, bith games are examples of games that end up taking themselves too seriously,

    On a related note, I think Shigeru Miyamoto (whose games, as many people know, focus less on story, and more on gameplay) warned about games turning out like this. That said, I'm not against games having specific stories. It's just that I think there's a better way that certain issues can be talked about. IMO, there's a right way and a wrong way to do it, and personally, I think both ASG games did it the wrong way. Also before anyone makes any comments about characters who are supposed to be "realistic" or "believable", that's just it. The way Acura / Copen is portrayed here is, if anything, the exact opposite. There's nothing realistic about people making excuses for their own ignorance (including those who use religion as a way to justify it, like Acura / Copen does) regardless if it happens in fiction or not...

    *I know: "If it didn't happen, there wouldn't be a game", etc.; hence why I said "from a certain point of view".
     
  2. GWOtaku

    GWOtaku Moderator
    Staff Member Moderator Reporter

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    Sounds like they flipped around Mega Man X as a character. On this occasion, maybe more imitation would've been a good thing. Oof.
     
  3. Rynnec

    Rynnec Active Member

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    Portraying a close minded bigot as...a close minded bigot. . How horrible.

    Not sure what you're getting at here. Coppen is clearly meant to be a bad guy in the situation and is portrayed as Gunvolt's rival. If anything, he'll be the most likely candidate for the third games big bad with those spoilers. Being a bitter, bigoted fool tends to turn you into a villain and lead you down a dark road.
     
  4. Scirel

    Scirel WHY SO FRIENDSHIP?

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    Yeah I`m not quite sure what's your real issue here. Are you saying it's bad writing? You seem to be dancing around what you'd really like to say.

    Regardless, it seems like he is being set up to be a villain in future games. It's just how that charachter is going. Tragic charachters happen.
     
  5. Mandouga

    Mandouga Well-Known Member

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    It seems to focus more on addressing a (still) serious issue and less and making a fun game to play, to the point where it ends up taking precedence over everything else, including the game itself. In other words, it feels like they were just trying to prove a point in the short term by portraying Acura / Copen the way they ended up doing. You'd think he would at least except...


    ...but instead, he takes the easy way out, as I already mentioned.

    IMO, one can't really enjoy this or any other game when it takes such a lopsided approach to addressing a major problem like prejudice/bigotry/racism.

    In short, they way it addresses this issue ends up taking precedence to the point where it overpowers the other parts of the games, and just doesn't make them as fun to play or watch (i.e., when it goes into the cutscenes) as they could have been in the long run. That's my issue. In fact, I believe Tiny Toon Adventures warned everyone about something like this in its "Elephant Issues" episode. Yes, I know Tiny Toon Adventures is a TV show, but I mean they warned everyone about it in general. In any event, I'm not saying the games are bad, but I'm not saying they're good either.

    Oh yeah, as it happens, if Acura / Copen is made a villain in a future game, that would mean I was right. Just saying...
     
  6. I.R. Shokew

    I.R. Shokew DISGRACED and Rooting ONLY for Underdogs

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    There's a second game??? Then again, when it comes to these games, all I care about is the music, honestly. Regardless, I'll keep my thoughts on this crap short:

    - Gunvolt's got the right idea: he knows not to be completely trusting, but at least he seems to have his head on straight - no one is pure good on either side, but learning to co - exist and punish those on either side who do bad (e.g.: Sumeragi, and later, Eden) is a step in the right direction.

    - Copen, on the other hand - no, just no. The fact that he can't accept his sister is an Adept in any sense is pretty bad. Copen would have worked better if his character was thus:

    1) Copen doesn't trust adepts, but that's because he too used to them being the bad guys, but he doesn't curse their existence like it's cancer or some crap like that. Copen's journey begins with
    trying to cope with that - eventually developing a "live and let die" sense of mutual respect, if you will.

    2) Copen comes to realize how dumb he is acting, upon discovering his sister is an adept and realizes the adepts who he is right to not be trusting of are exactly those giving adepts in general a bad name (again, see Sumeragi and Eden.), knowing his sister, despite being one of those things he doesn't trust, is someone worth protecting. You know, a bit of realization of sorts that adepts like those we fight in the games are giving adepts like Mytyl (Copen's sister), who likely only wish to co - exist with like humanity, nothing but difficulty in doing so.

    3) No, Copen and Gunvolt don't have to be best friends, or anything like that - but have them work together to bring down these organizations (at some point), rather than pointlessly fighting each other for stupid reasons that ultimately make no real sense.

    4) At some point - have Copen admit he lost himself in his fight against adepts who only wish harm on everyone and how he wants to help his sister, despite not completely knowing how, due to having a hard time coping with her not being human (and as a result, not knowing how to truly care for her, as much as he wants to.), like he otherwise is. I don't know how; I haven't thought that far ahead, honestly... I like to think I'm putting more thought into this crap than the games did, however!

    Then again - I've seen this setup handled better elsewhere (without saying examples!), preferably with the super - powered beings not all being bad guys, which only makes Copen's wrongful thinking seem right in the end, which is even worse and a testament to the games' poor writing, IMHO.

    It's no wonder the only thing I like about this series is the music. I have yet to touch these games, and I don't think I ever will, knowing the crappy storytelling gets in the way of what could have been a great game series without it messing things up - then again, this game series ain't even popular to begin with, save for the music, from what I gather.
     
    #6 I.R. Shokew, Feb 26, 2017
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2017

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