justin bieber xbox

First, they came for our music. They killed Kurt Cobain and left behind Bieber, and I said nothing. Then, they came for our books. They took Catcher in the Rye and left us Twilight. And still, I said nothing.

Not content, they came for our films. They took Independence Day and Nic Cage’s golden era and left us Transformers and X-Men 3. Even then, I said nothing.

Now, they’ve come for our games. And I can’t stay silent any longer.

Hats, hats, hats

So Quake Champions was announced recently, and since watching the teaser trailer I’ve been unable to keep down solid food.

What is possibly the greatest arena shooter franchise of all time has morphed itself, disgustingly, into an Overwatch clone. Did you see that dude teleporting around? It was like watching a remastered Citizen Kane and having Samuel L. Jackson show up in a clown suit and start juggling.

While bitching about this to anyone who would listen, a friend of mine astutely pointed out that arena shooters don’t fit the new multiplayer model of mandatory microtransactions. Overwatch is great because Blizzard can sell skins and other cosmetic features till the end of time, and id Software wants to get in on that action.

You did this to us, children. League of Legends sent us down this dark spiral of depravity, and every time I hit the load screen and see some supposed assassin half-naked in a goddamn bunny-suit I know there’s a filthy adolescent behind the screen trying to get in his seventh skin-flute solo of the day before his six-year old Celeron can chug the progress bar up to 100%.

Can’t you just download nudity mods or pay a hobo to buy you porn from the dodgy café like we did when we were kids? Little bastards.

"No, the ones from the top shelf. With the plastic wrap on them."

“No, the ones from the top shelf. With the plastic wrap on them.”

You made PewDiePie exist

I watched a PewDiePie video once, and it’s the single worst thing I’ve ever seen on YouTube, keeping in mind I once stumbled across a video of a baby breastfeeding overlaid with sound clips pulled from The Exorcist.

Seeing that giant wailing manbaby fumble his way through a game talking like he’d just given himself a helium enema was enough to make me never want to have children, ever. If I had to walk in on my own child watching a PewDiePie video I’d probably just immediately seppuku myself with a plastic lightsaber.

eSports are an amazing example of how to watch other people play videogames, Let’s Play videos on the other hand fall on the awful scale somewhere between genocide and nipples on the batsuit. Play your own damn games. Work your way through that embarrassing backlog I know you all have.

Facebook integration

You did this. With your duckfaces and your selfies and your filters and your obsession with chronicling every meal, non-event and bowel movement that you ever experience; permanently taking up residence in your own tiny corner of the internet.

Now every single game I ever play requires me to accept fourteen different agreements, verify an e-mail address, link three social media accounts and submit a urine sample before I so much as see the menu screen.

I don’t want to share an in-game recording of what I just did to Facebook – I want to tell my friends about it later, embellishing the good bits and leaving out the minor detail that it took me fifteen tries and a video tutorial.

Cool picture, right? Not as cool as I was going to make it sound.

Cool picture, right? Not as cool as I was going to make it sound.

Everything is easy now

You may have caught my universally-loved and admired Uncharted 4 review a few weeks back, where I lamented the game’s incessant hand-holding and unwanted, unsolicited advice from the overly chatty NPCs that follow you around everywhere.

That’s because the youth of today have the attention spans of lobotomised cattle, and will generally turn off anything that doesn’t provide meaningful feedback within the span of a couple of minutes. It’s why I have to sporadically sprinkle dick jokes around every column so that I can hold all of your attention for one more paragraph.

It used to be that games would have you spend more than forty seconds looking for something you need and the puzzles were actually harder than the mazes you find on the back of a box of Frosties. Playing games today makes me feel like I’m at the beach with water-wings on. It’s embarrassing.

So fellow grumpy old men and women of NAG, how do you think the youth have ruined gaming? It’s safe to comment now, it’s past their bedtime.

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