I Don’t Have the Patience for Multiple Endings

As I’ve been saying, I have been busy catching up on a bunch of old games I was told were the duck’s quack, and one game I beat rather recently was “Chrono Trigger”, a game made by the same developers as “Final Fantasy”. The story involves our heroes traveling through time in their efforts to prevent the monster Lavos from bursting forth from the surface of the planet and causing the apocalypse.  While I would have liked to have had a better main villain than a monster, I definitely see why people have so many good things to say about it.

What I think I loved most about this game, aside from the absence of random battles, was the fact that your actions had an impact on what happened.  That’s what I always thought RPG’s were supposed to do, but more often than not, you really get no more say in the direction of the plot than what your character’s name is and what sword they tote around.  But, this game actually gives you many optional sidequests you can complete that will change the future and the game’s ending, as well.

One such example is when you can cause a forest to grow where there was once a desert, but my favorite change of all was actually much smaller and far less obvious to the world at large, but which had the greatest impact on me.  To summarize, in one time period, there is a greedy man who is hated by his children because he loves money more than he cares for them.  But, a simple act of generosity in the past, and his ancestors will teach their children to be kind.  Return to his time, and you’ll find that he’s the most generous man around and his children love him.  I thought…sniff…it was just…sniff sniff…rather touching, and I just wish the game had more instances of such a deep change in its characters, even the minor ones.

Anyway, I’m not going to ramble much more about this game, as I used to do that far too often and create rather boring posts, but I wanted to point out one final thing.  I think it’s great that this game has multiple endings.  I love games that aren’t the same for everyone who plays it, each time they play it.  But, you know what?

As great as such a concept is, I simply don’t have the patience for these kinds of things.  Here I have in my possession a game where the player can make an actual difference, and I don’t have the desire to actually see these different paths through to the end.  I want games like this, and yet they always have a tendency to leave me overwhelmed, which is ironic, really, when I don’t want my games to be linear.  Or perhaps I’m kidding myself, and I do like linear games.  You see, “Final Fantasy XII” was insanely open-world, and it freaked me out.  It very nearly panicked me to have so many places I could go and sometimes so little direction.  What am I to do with all this freedom?!  I can’t take it!  (Runs away and tugs out feathers in terror)

Maybe I’m just not used to games being so big or giving us so many choices when I grew up with platformers and the like, which often don’t have much of a plot to begin with, and the locations were never too enormous.  Or maybe I’m just impatient.  I love games to take me as long as possible, and yet, once I get started, I’m looking on the Internet to see how long it’s going to take.  I love having freedom in my games, whether it be to explore or to change what happens, and yet I shy away from open worlds or have no desire to see what other options there are to change the game’s story.

In short, I will likely never attempt to get any of the other endings this game has to offer.  It’s just…well, too scary.  It’s too much for my puny duck brain to handle, and as great as “Chrono Trigger” is for allowing the player’s choices to actually matter, it is a game I will never experience to the fullest because of my sheer impatience and wimpiness in the face of a mere video game.

I can always watch the other endings on Youtube, though, can’t I?  That doesn’t take much effort….

An Impatient and Contradictory Duck

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5 thoughts on “I Don’t Have the Patience for Multiple Endings

  1. Multiple endings are great things to motivate extra play, but I almost feel like they’re enhanced when they’re not the object of play. Playing to get a certain ending kind of cheapens the while experience, in my opinion.

    What’s nice about them though is they allow for a level of personalization to your game. The ending you get becomes your ending. Maybe it’s the official one, maybe it isn’t, but it’s still yours. It takes the whole story and turns it from one you’re following to one you’re defining. And that’s awesome!

    It’s not about having the patience to see everything I think, but rather what you want to do with the story in the first place.

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    1. That’s certainly a good way of looking at things. I suppose if my goal is to simply see what ending I get, then that does indeed make it much more personal. I like games with multiple endings, as it feels like your choices have some actual effect on where the game goes. All those options just overwhelm me.

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  2. Multiple endings are – alright. I understand what you mean about the spookiness. I recently completed Akiba’s Trip Undead and Undressed for the fifth time so I could experience each of the alternate endings. Each time I played the game, despite enjoying the entertainment, I was continuously concerned I would not achieve my intended goal. During one play-through, I inadvertently found myself in a relationship with a woman I had not intended to romance; basically, problems can arise from so much freedom.
    Having access to said freedom however, does grant games, in my opinion, more reality, and therefore becomes more immersive. I mean, I’m the guy that played the Mass Effect games dozens of times in order to experience every possible conclusion.
    Although sometimes, having a game like Halo with a linear objective, makes game-play so much less complicated.
    Guess it really depends on two things; the mood of the player, and their general preferences.

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    1. I do like games that have many options because I love feeling like my choices matter. And yet, even as I say that, I panic at the thought of having so much to see and do. I get easily overwhelmed, you see, so the very games I say I enjoy frighten me. Final Fantasy XII doesn’t have multiple endings, but there is so much to explore, I feel quite lost. It’s too much! I thought games were supposed to be fun!

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