And tonight, as SpikeTV's 2008 Video Game Awards (VGA) unfold, more will undoubtedly log on their nearest and dearest forum to weep or rage.
A lot of fanboy controversy arose, along with accusations of Xbox 360 favorism, when G4's X-Play announced Fable II as the winner of their Game of the Year award. The GameGrep post succeeded in attracting fanboy-outrage, and the X-Play site had an even longer string of discontent. There's a good chance that many of the angriest individuals had never touched Lionhead's recent RPG, typically PS3 fans who cling to the glory of Metal Gear Solid 4 and chase Kojima's coattails. A handful of posters admit that while they enjoyed Fable II, it certainly hadn't felt like GotY material.
Off the top of my own head, I can name a couple reasons why people would think this; the co-op is clumsy, and the game itself is riddled with bugs. Though most of the bugs have been quite beneficial so far, I can understand how people think this would disqualify Fable II. As for the co-op, well, it was a nice addition to the franchise but also unnecessary to the overall experience. While showing off your Heroes was a nice option, most multiplayer needs could be fulfilled by the option to simply see your friends while they're in the same area -- trading, stats, etc. That glowing green orb was rather amusing to follow around, anyway. I could think of more co-op features to improve it, like allowing gamers to use their own Heroes instead of picking from a sad collection of generic models.
But the game succeeds at what it does, and those who listen to the interview with Peter Molyneux following the GotY pick would be able to understand what Lionhead wanted to accomplish with Fable II, and in that context, I believe the game succeeded. Call me a fangirl for saying this, but this game is as deserving of X-Play's GotY award as any other.
Many no doubt breathed a sigh of relief when Fable II didn't make SpikeTV's list of GotY nominees. Doesn't mean the strife didn't end, however, as all the PS3 fanboys once again began making threats regarding Metal Gear Solid. I haven't seen this much whining over something that hasn't happened yet in a very long time, and GameGrep is only one of many Internet forums.
Quite a few of these fanboy laments address the issue following possibility: "If GTA IV wins..."
So what if Grand Theft Auto IV wins? Will you like your first choice any less?
What rabid fanboys fail to remember is that these awards, at their very core, are based on opinions, and we all know opinions can vary. That's why there's so much fan drama, right? Of course they have every right to get upset, but the amount of blind fanboyism can get incredibly irritating when they attack titles that they feel simply are not worthy.
In a perfect world, there would be no war. In a perfect world, gamers could sit down and hold intelligible discussions as to which games they prefer on which console and why. Unfounded assaults on fellow gamers and their games of choice only leaves a bad taste in everyone's mouths. I know, now I'm just dreaming. But the level to which gamers will stoop, the length to which some of us fall in our blind fandom is truly unfortunate, especially when it drives us to ignorance and outright annoyance.
The bitter fangirl in me hopes that Metal Gear Solid 4 loses to Grand Theft Auto IV just so I can observe the strife that follows. Otherwise, I think all the nominees are great games, each with their unique strengths and flaws.