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Is "No Russian" the Red Wedding of Video Games?

Morrigan

Armoring
Moderator
Oct 24, 2017
12,538
Official Staff Communication
All right, that's enough with the back-and-forth, everyone. Please stop this derail.
 

Cess007

Member
Oct 27, 2017
6,820
Mexicali, Mexico
What is with the GoT stans disagreeing with me while also agreeing with me
I found hilarious that your post is "RW is important because of the context. As proof, I watched it without it, and feel underwhelmed" and people comes out angry replying "Duuuh, you watched it without context!! Of course you feel underwhelmed!"

Like they're angrily agreeing with you lmao

Edit. Saw Mod post.

To keep on-topic: No, I don't think No Russian is the RW of videogames. Tho honestly, I can't think of a single scene in a game that matches it.
 

Suburban Thug

Member
Nov 13, 2017
3,230
Midwest
I watched the Red Wedding scene on YouTube the other day so I could know what people were talking about, and I was underwhelmed?

People make it sound like some massive massacre, but it's just a handful of slightly badly acted main characters, and the other "civilian" (I guess?) deaths are mostly off-screen. All the focus is on the named characters. Obviously it doesn't really impact me, because I haven't watched more than a few episodes. So the shock value there seems directly related to your personal investment of the characters.

Contrast to No Russian, where it's tasteless, edgy shock value that doesn't seem to have anything really building up to it. It's just, "Kill a ton of civilians in a mass shooting simulator". It doesn't rely on your knowledge or investment in anything, it's just offensive for the sake of it.
LOL

Watched one scene on youtube with no context and calls the acting bad. Thanks for the laugh.

EDIT: Just saw the mod post
 

Wackamole

Banned
Oct 27, 2017
9,279
Yes. I wasn't spoiled and i was a bit shocked. I told myself to try and just shoot but internally i didn't want to. Still, at one point i said "fuck it" and just started shooting. It was weird but i think i will always remember. Curious about the next one.
 

Gundam

Member
Oct 25, 2017
9,595
The closest thing to a Red Wedding of Video Games in my experience is probably Mass Effect 2, just in terms of how it's supposed to get an emotional response from the consumer, with the distinction that Shepard's mistakes are supposed to feel like your mistakes. Branding the end of it the "suicide mission" hardcore telegraphs it though, and was even used in marketing.


No, it's not.

How do you judge the acting when you have no idea who the character is or their personality?
There were just moments that jumped out at me. My gut reaction was "Oh, oof. That was slightly embarrassing for me to hear and see. The set-up and delivery was weird and felt unnatural enough to take me out of it."
 

Giant Panda

Member
Oct 25, 2017
676
It's got to be Bioshock's Would You Kindly. That really made me think back how it was heavily foreshadowed, and yet I was surprised.
 

muteKi

Member
Oct 22, 2018
10,401
a sunken pirate ship
Thread about theme and context in video games going sadly about as well as I expected.

Anyway here's wonderwall Cameron Kunzelmann describing the halls of horrors that are shown off in Homefront, explicitly comparing them (favorably!) to similar scenes in Cuarón's Children of Men:

 

Smokey

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,216
I watched the Red Wedding scene on YouTube the other day so I could know what people were talking about, and I was underwhelmed?

People make it sound like some massive massacre, but it's just a handful of slightly badly acted main characters, and the other "civilian" (I guess?) deaths are mostly off-screen. All the focus is on the named characters. Obviously it doesn't really impact me, because I haven't watched more than a few episodes. So the shock value there seems directly related to your personal investment of the characters.

Contrast to No Russian, where it's tasteless, edgy shock value that doesn't seem to have anything really building up to it. It's just, "Kill a ton of civilians in a mass shooting simulator". It doesn't rely on your knowledge or investment in anything, it's just offensive for the sake of it.


EDIT:
I mean...that's the point. If you didn't watch the show up until that point, clearly you have no investment in what is happening on screen.
 

HK-47

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,277
Also, the OP post sort of encapsulates why people (including David Benioff and D. B. Weiss) seem to misunderstand the Red Wedding scene and its legacy. The scene isn't about "shock value." It's not like George R. R. Martin decided to throw darts at a dartboard and went "Welp, I guess Robb Stark is gonna die in this chapter." It's not some random heinous event he threw into the book to shock people. It's the logical culmination of a series of severe tactical mistakes that Robb makes throughout the books. In a traditional fantasy story, Robb would suffer no consequences for these mistakes because he's "the good guy" and a noble man, but ASOIAF is a realistic world where people who make mistakes pay the price for them.

The correct reaction to the Red Wedding isn't supposed to be "Holy shit, I didn't see that coming," it's "Holy shit, why didn't I see that coming?" That's what makes it a good twist and that's what its many imitators fail to understand.
This is the real difference, in addition to the fact that IW was pushing No Russian before the game even came out, so it had no surprise
 

zombiejames

Member
Oct 25, 2017
4,064
Purely in terms of shock value does the MW2 "No Russian" level rank as one of the most shocking moments in gaming history?
Fuck no. For one, they gave players the option of opting out. Second, other than firing the first shot, you literally don't have to do anything. It was a sad attempt at manufacturing controversy at best.
 

Mona

Member
Oct 30, 2017
16,120
in order for no russians to be impactful call of duty would have to be capable of making you care and be invested in the events of the story

i yawned as i saw those texture wrapped polygons getting gunned down
 

CHC

Member
Oct 27, 2017
3,086
I always just shoot random stuff when I do this mission, it’s no wonder Makarov kills me in the end!
 

Dysun

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,454
Miami
No Russian being spoiled everywhere robbed the scene of any potential impact it may have had. It was all over the place before launch
 

RedSwirl

Member
Oct 25, 2017
4,794
"No Russian" was spoiled all over gaming media weeks before the game released so no, not really.

A more analogous situation would be the surprise nuke in CoD4 where your player character and everyone else gets killed.
Exactly. In all these conversations about shocking COD moments I'm surprised how little people seem to be talking about the nuke in COD4. It was the moment that originally inspired all this. No Russian and everything after was just IW constantly trying to recapture the shock of the nuke, and none of them are successful at it.
 

Pascal

The Fallen
Oct 28, 2017
4,771
There were just moments that jumped out at me. My gut reaction was "Oh, oof. That was slightly embarrassing for me to hear and see. The set-up and delivery was weird and felt unnatural enough to take me out of it."
The entire event is meant to be pretty awkward and uncomfortable leading up to the killings. It's meant to be a bit "off" in a way. At least, that's how I remember it from the books.
 

DoughBoi

Member
May 7, 2019
50
On the one hand i'd be curious to know what would have been the reactions if it was "No American" instead (US would have banned the game from the country and whined about it for years).

On the other the way that came out "illegally" leaked, the guy who was heavily involved in its development, and how Activision tried so hard to milk it with other releases, it all sounds like that scene was intentionally created as a marketing scheme, to create some fake controversy.

I don't even know what's the other.
Not to nitpick, but in that case it would be called “No English” as “No Russian” is in reference to not speaking Russian.
 

Flaurehn

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,542
Mexico City
The closest thing to a Red Wedding of Video Games in my experience is probably Mass Effect 2, just in terms of how it's supposed to get an emotional response from the consumer, with the distinction that Shepard's mistakes are supposed to feel like your mistakes. Branding the end of it the "suicide mission" hardcore telegraphs it though, and was even used in marketing.
I was going to say this. Aeris/th death is the Red Wedding for people that think Red Wedding is about shock value and out of nowhere status (those people are mistaken tho). But Mass Effect 2's Suicide Mission is actually the equivalent, because if everyone dies is due to your build up to that scene and choices you made previously so it doesn't come as much a surprise they die but just like the RW is a "Holy shit, I can believe there were actual consecuences to the story!!"
 

McNum

Member
Oct 26, 2017
1,401
Denmark
A few people here have mentioned a moment in Fire Emblem: Genealogy of the Holy War as a possible comparison. I could see that, if that game gets a remake, then I could very well see it get a similar status, if on a smaller scale, should the remake be successful enough.

Plus it will even have the core fans who know what's coming, but the new fans who won't thing going on like the Red Wedding did.
 

Border

Member
Oct 25, 2017
9,449
Red Wedding was shocking because it not only featured major character deaths, but shockingly abrupt and unexpected conclusion to the Stark/Lannister war that had been the main narrative of the entire series. Not to mention that the bad guys totally won.

"No Russian" is, by comparison, just a situation where the player character can choose to murder a bunch of innocent people. In the grand scheme of things I don't see how it's more shocking or tasteless than a Grand Theft Auto game. GTA4 has you murdering police with no real choice about it.
 

Blackage

Member
Oct 27, 2017
849
There is no red wedding of video games, because writing in video games typically is kind of ass.

For there to be a Red Wedding style moment in games, you'd probably game in a franchise series.

Then you'd need the new protag of said series to go through the game, but fail at all the rules of the franchise

This goes on for 1/3 of the game until they get to the part of the game and in the franchise where the hero wins some trivial fight or something, but instead they die horribly and then you start playing as the bad guy or something.

I just wrote that off the top of my head and it's awful, but do you honestly expect games industry writers to try harder? Most of the stuff they write is surface level at best.
 

HK-47

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,277
Modern Warfare has just been chasing the real shocking moment that was the nuke in CoD4. They are forcing it with no build up and are entirely too eager to market these moments over letting them naturally happen as a consequence of other actions taken in the story
 

Squid Bunny

Member
Jun 11, 2018
1,879
Also, the OP post sort of encapsulates why people (including David Benioff and D. B. Weiss) seem to misunderstand the Red Wedding scene and its legacy. The scene isn't about "shock value." It's not like George R. R. Martin decided to throw darts at a dartboard and went "Welp, I guess Robb Stark is gonna die in this chapter." It's not some random heinous event he threw into the book to shock people. It's the logical culmination of a series of severe tactical mistakes that Robb makes throughout the books. In a traditional fantasy story, Robb would suffer no consequences for these mistakes because he's "the good guy" and a noble man, but ASOIAF is a realistic world where people who make mistakes pay the price for them.

The correct reaction to the Red Wedding isn't supposed to be "Holy shit, I didn't see that coming," it's "Holy shit, why didn't I see that coming?" That's what makes it a good twist and that's what its many imitators fail to understand.
This. Not only that, there is a big "discomfort" throughout the entire Cat POV, like something in the back of your head saying "you don't really think this is really going to end all well and good, right?"

Reading it is shocking, I remember not picking up the book I was madly reading for a full day before getting back to it. It really pays off all the mistakes Robb and Cat had made in a subversive way.
The fuck is a Red Wedding? Is it a type of Beyblade?
It's a 10-1 favorite at the Belmont Stakes.
 

Jipset

Member
Aug 25, 2018
697
That mission wasn't super effective imo, but I respect the old IW for always trying to push the envelope. MW2 was such a wild game.

But yeah, agreed with others about the nuke scene in CoD4 being more shocking.
 

Ravelle

Member
Oct 31, 2017
6,269
No russian didn't really shock me, nor did it leave any emotional impact on me. Metal Gear V's " Shining Lights, Even in Death" had way more impact on me.

No Russian was more like Dany torching Kings Landing.
 

TheBaldwin

Member
Feb 25, 2018
4,030
Nah. A red wedding equivelant would have to be a group of characters we enjoy, who are on the verge of winning, get betrayed/ something happens that ends up in there death that then shifts the narrative

Rdr2 is pretty close with the bank shootout

No russia is just a shock scene, one that sets up the villain and his capabilities, and gives a motivation for the protagonists and players to chase him
 

Arthoneceron

Member
Oct 27, 2017
2,175
Minas Gerais, Brazil
*Ahem*

In the A Song of Ice and Fire series, the Red Wedding was a consequence of three or four apparently unrelated moments where Robb Stark (and his mother, Catelyn Tully) betrayed some of his allies thinking egoistically over his (or their) own motivations. That would be resumed as:

>Catelyn being afflicted over the fact that her daughters were in the hands of Lannister (and she didn't knew it was only Sansa in their hands) and releasing Jaime Lannister together with Brienne of Tarth to release them
>Robb Start breach his marriage vows and make Jeyne Westerling (fuck Talisa), daughter of an ally of Lannisters, his wife.
>The Frey, offended by the treason, abandon the Starks and went back to the Twins.
>Rickard Karstark, the biggest ally of the Starks, getting angry because Catelyn released Jaime Lannister, the one which kills his sons. He kills two captives and it's declared traitor by the King of the North, it's beheaded and the whole Karstark lost his power. Once powerfull, the Starks now only has half of their power.
>Roose Bolton, which looked at a opportunity to receive the Real forgiveness plus the totality of the North, went to Tywin Lannister and made a plan with them to destroy the Stark forces from the inside. The same is offered to Walder Frey, which looked at Lord Hoster Tully, which was ill, and Edmure Tully, which was the heir of Riverrun but was slow thinking, and saw an opportunity of taking probably the third biggest kingdom of Westeros.
>Taking the opportunity of a wedding, or better saying, a way of their army were relaxed enough for a battle, they made up a cerimony with the bless of the Seven, but the whole situation turned bad when the attacks started.
>At the end, the whole Tully, Stark and minor allies were destroyed, and the Bolton received the North, the Frey received the Rivers, and the Lannisters won the War, since on that time, Stannis was secluded in the Stormlands and apparently defeated.
>Lady Catelyn Stark later was ressurrected.
____

Saying that, people actually can pretend that a shit scene like "No Russian" could have a big narrative impact, but for someone that thinks that Activision created an edgy scene only to shock their audience and is cynical enough to pretend to say that "it's how the war works", that didn't impressed at all. Actually the opposite, since the Nuke of the MW1 didn't create enough commotion and in the MW3 they had to appeal to a family with kids being killed by a bomb attack, that only shows how a joke of a company like Activision needs to appeal to the most disgusting and inhumane ways to promote and sell their products.
 
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Wombat_Lover

Attempted to circumvent ban with alt account
Banned
Jan 20, 2019
527
Nope. The difference is that you care about the characters in Game of Thrones. No one cares or even remembers people in a cod campaign.
 

TubaZef

Member
Oct 28, 2017
1,626
Brazil
I've just realized that game writers hardly ever have guts to kill important characters.

The closest I can think of are Aeris in FFVII, Crono in CT (which you can resurrect and most people do it) and the FFVI End of the world thing (but you can get everyone back so not really that big of a deal).

But none of those are as big as the Red Wedding.

ON THE OTHER HAND, something like loosing your best characters in X-Com can really have an emotional impact as big as that scene had in Game of Thrones. And having that in such a surprising and natural way is something that only games can provide. Just something to think about.
 

Blacki138

Member
Oct 28, 2017
2,833
Nah man. Roach and my boy Ghost getting shot by Shepherd and then burned alive is still one of the most horrible scenes I have seen in a videogame. A real 1-2 gut punch.

Runner up is Jen's death in The Darkness.