Gaming with Consequences

xcom enemy unknown

Recently I’ve been playing the hell out of XCOM: Enemy Unknown and I’ve been really enjoying it, despite its difficulty and the fiddlyness of the controls (though I hear using an actual controller smooths this out – I’m on the PC). One of the aspects I enjoy the most is being able to customize your soldiers and give them individual names. The problem with doing this is that I’ve grown kind of attached to my little polygonal troops and XCOM has no problem killing them off on a whim.

I try to be as careful as I can in a given mission, but sometimes the game just works against me. For the most part I’ve been quick-saving often (autosaves are disabled by default) but during a particularly tough mission today a box truck exploded, taking out two battle-hardened soldiers. I was almost done the mission and had killed about nine Chrysalids along the way, so I didn’t feel like reloading and doing the whole operation over again just to save two troopers. Granted, they were generic ones that I hadn’t given special names to, but this is the first time in XCOM that I hadn’t felt the need to call a mulligan and rolled with the consequences.

Dishonored is a game where this sort of approach can also apply, given the inherit stealthy nature of the mechanics. While you do have the option to go hog-wild on the guards you’re facing, the game rewards you for taking a quiet, non-lethal approach, something that can make people into perfectionists, quick-saving constantly.

So, my question for you guys is, do you accept the consequences of your actions in games like these? Do you prefer to reload your last save because you know you could have done it better?

Written by

mitch@gamersushi.com Twitter: @mi7ch Gamertag: Lubeius PSN ID: Lubeius SteamID: Lube182 Origin/EA:Lube182 Currently Playing: Stardew Valley, Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam, Knights of the Old Republic 2: The Sith Lords, Battlefield 4, Tom Clancy Double Feature: Rainbow Six Siege and The Division

6 thoughts on “Gaming with Consequences”

  1. Haha. I abuse the sh*t out of quick and hard saves in any game. I know it kind of ruins the fun for me, but I’ve been doing it for so long, it’s hard to just let loose.

    Worst thing though was today I finished Dishonored without killing anyone but did not receive the corresponding achievement. If you’re planning on doing that, I suggest you read a guide (against our better judgement) before you even start a game. Pretty bummed.

  2. (Hey there, I actually have an account and I’d like to spare you the trouble of moderating my comments/I’d like to be able to access my account but for some reason the forgot password feature is glitched and I never receive any emails :/)

    That aside! I’m the guy who is a complete perfectionist who never saves and then pays the price by reloading massive chunks, and then does a second play through where I go really rough on the hardest difficulty and lives with the consequences, other that ME1-ME2-ME3 that is, they are special. I am super psyched to buy XCOM when the end-of-year-sales begin, maybe get some Live! and go nuts on ME3, HALO 4! (so psyched!) and XCOM. <—(Loves sci-fi action-shooters with a burning passion, among other polygonal, pixelised (that should be a word) delicacies.)

  3. Oh man, I am the biggest savescum known to man. More in the “I could have done that fight a bit better,” rather than “Oh no! This character dies? RELOAD! RELOAD!”

  4. It’s taken a heaping dose of necessity, but I’ve managed to get my reload habit mostly under control. My backlog doesn’t need any artificial extension by way of spamming reloads every other encounter. I’ll confess that I still save compulsively, but I reserve reloads for perceived cheap shots, glitches or the odd inscrutable plot choice, not poor performance or unintended consequences.

  5. I’ve had a habit of quicksaving so much in my gaming career(?). SO many times did I save just before facing a legendary Pokemon, in a countermeasure against a failed catch attempt. The times that that happened, many a frustration and turning off of my Gameboy occurred. I did saving a lot in Fallout as well.

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