As I was watching the latest Fortnite video to emerge from the artist formerly known as Epic MegaGames, a voice at the back of my brainbox suggested that the developer talkthrough reminded me of something I read yesterday. Could it have been the fifth chapter of ill-advised The Shining sequel, Doctor Sleep? Nope. We could argue that psychic vampiric traveller clan the True Knot are a metaphor for gamers, with their need for ‘the good Steam’, but that’s a stretch. Maybe it was an article about Lego Architecture Studio? Nah. That’s a different kind of construction entirely.
Aha! It was John’s draconian and violently enforced rules for games. The video, you see, is like watching a tutorial for a game I’ve already played.
To be fair, I should probably have said a tutorial for a collection of games that I’ve already played. I’m comfortable with collecting resources to build things though, as is almost everybody else who has ever encountered a game. I know how to punch a tree.
Maybe I’m old, maybe I’m tired (maybe it’s both), but Fortnite looks very busy. I’m always slightly uncomfortable when I see stonking great spikes that only manage to chip away at health bars rather than obliterating opponents and leaving nothing but gibs behind. Makes me think defending the fort and killing zombies and imps is going to feel like work rather than pleasure.
As for Doctor Sleep, what a stale cocktail of ideas it is. It’s starting to find some shape but I’m finding it a slog and King’s folksiness is grating more than it usually does. Can anyone recommend a good horror novel?