Author Topic: Am i the only one..  (Read 8989 times)

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r3kan

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Am i the only one..
« on: September 04, 2012, 02:29:03 PM »
*spoilers*
...didnt like the ending?
now dont get me wrong. I love this game, the music is top notch, character development is excellent and the story (up until the ending) is just heart wrenching. That dance in lighthouse part is so sweet i think its forever carved into my memories. Oh and Dr Watts is AWESOME
...but the ending bothered me a lot, the memory alternation just ruined everything for me. Here's my understanding of the story

Before the memory alteration:
River and John made the promise to meet under the moon but John lost his memory in an accident. River was saddened because John did not keep his promise hence she started making orgami rabbits. Somewhere in John's mind, he subconsciously regrets forgetting the promise so he 'wants to go to the moon'.

Now after the memory alternation, we have:
River and John made the promise and never saw each other since. John became an astronaut and not so coincidentally reunite with river. mind you that in the new memories they are pretty much strangers since they only met once. they flew off to the moon... 'fullfillying' the promise

so basically sacraficed all the precious memories he had with River, the proposal, movie, wedding and DANCE IN THE LIGHTHOUSE in order to keep a promise with a stranger. sure hes satisfied but its like when a kid whines because he cant afford to buy a top quality item and then you go up to him and say 'you wouldnt be whining if you have no money to begin with'
im sorry it just really bothers me a lot so i had to let it out

danim1130

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Re: Am i the only one..
« Reply #1 on: September 04, 2012, 04:03:34 PM »
Well, you just wrote down the reason Watson and Eva had a fight in the game. And mind you, I think it's not necessary that those memories were deleted, it's possible they were just "relocated". I don't see a reason why they couldn't get married before the space trip.

But on the other hand, it's really an intresting philosophical question that Eva and Watson had an argumennt over. It's true that John wanted to go to the moon, but (and now let's assume they deleted River) to reach his goals, he would lose the original reason he wanted to do that. I don't know why, but I feel it's kinda like euthanasia, where it's really hard to say what's good for the patient, or the typical "Is it better to be happy and lose it than never be happy?" question. In the real life, John was happy, only to lose it in a really unfortunate events, while in the imagined world, he was a normal guy who went to the moon, and nothing bad happened to him.

At first of course I've said that staying with River is the better option because of all the memories, but then after some thinking, I'm not quite sure about that...

vanemare

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Re: Am i the only one..
« Reply #2 on: September 04, 2012, 05:00:00 PM »
Before the memory alteration:
River and John made the promise to meet under the moon but John lost his memory in an accident. River was saddened because John did not keep his promise hence she started making orgami rabbits. Somewhere in John's mind, he subconsciously regrets forgetting the promise so he 'wants to go to the moon'.

River and John promised to regroup ON the moon if one gets lost or forgets. Since they've met again (in school or maybe earlier) there was no need to regroup on the moon. They married, danced in the Anya etc. After taking the Beta-Blockers to forget about Joey he also forgot about his very first meeting with River and the promise. But his subconscious remembered it and that's why, after River died, he wants to go to moon.

River started making the bunnies after Johnny told her about the Beta-Blockers. She wanted him to remember everything.

Now after the memory alternation, we have:
River and John made the promise and never saw each other since.

Correct.

John became an astronaut and not so coincidentally reunite with river. mind you that in the new memories they are pretty much strangers since they only met once. they flew off to the moon... 'fullfillying' the promise

In the alternate memories their second meeting (1st meeting at the hill) was at NASA, not so coincidentally as you said. They both flew to the moon, fulfilling their promise. You can see them holding hands in the Shuttle. Also they marry after they came back from the moon. The machine kept as many memories the same as befor with little changes. For example at the part where Nick, Johnny, River and Izzy sat in that bar (where Watts had to eat some jars of pickled olives) you could see that Joey was there in the alternate memories.

so basically sacraficed all the precious memories he had with River, the proposal, movie, wedding and DANCE IN THE LIGHTHOUSE in order to keep a promise with a stranger. sure hes satisfied but its like when a kid whines because he cant afford to buy a top quality item and then you go up to him and say 'you wouldnt be whining if you have no money to begin with'
im sorry it just really bothers me a lot so i had to let it out

The reason why Watts and Eva had the fight was that because Watts thought Eva was about to remove River completely, so that she and Johnny would never ever met again. But she only relocated her. They've met, regrouped on the moon, married, danced, build the house at the cliff close to Anya and Joey was still alive.

They never went to the movie though.

This is how I understood the story. I hope what I wrote there was understandable.  :seraismile:

r3kan

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Re: Am i the only one..
« Reply #3 on: September 05, 2012, 12:43:50 AM »
Well, you just wrote down the reason Watson and Eva had a fight in the game. And mind you, I think it's not necessary that those memories were deleted, it's possible they were just "relocated". I don't see a reason why they couldn't get married before the space trip.

But on the other hand, it's really an intresting philosophical question that Eva and Watson had an argumennt over. It's true that John wanted to go to the moon, but (and now let's assume they deleted River) to reach his goals, he would lose the original reason he wanted to do that. I don't know why, but I feel it's kinda like euthanasia, where it's really hard to say what's good for the patient, or the typical "Is it better to be happy and lose it than never be happy?" question. In the real life, John was happy, only to lose it in a really unfortunate events, while in the imagined world, he was a normal guy who went to the moon, and nothing bad happened to him.

At first of course I've said that staying with River is the better option because of all the memories, but then after some thinking, I'm not quite sure about that...
it would be great if the memories are relocated but the scenes where memories with river gets replaced by memories with joey says otherwise. besides, he is having new memories of his entire life alternated as he is dying. i doubt he'll have time to sort things out. but yea im against the whole replacing your memories to gain pseudo happiness. i just imagine the old man to say something along the lines of 'i am satisfied with my life but something seems to be missing. I have fulfilled my childhood promise but why was it so important? i dont remember...'

River and John promised to regroup ON the moon if one gets lost or forgets. Since they've met again (in school or maybe earlier) there was no need to regroup on the moon. They married, danced in the Anya etc. After taking the Beta-Blockers to forget about Joey he also forgot about his very first meeting with River and the promise. But his subconscious remembered it and that's why, after River died, he wants to go to moon.

River started making the bunnies after Johnny told her about the Beta-Blockers. She wanted him to remember everything.



the actual promise was to meet again at the carnival spot and if john didnt go, they will meet under the moon. John did not fullfill the promise.

In the alternate memories their second meeting (1st meeting at the hill) was at NASA, not so coincidentally as you said. They both flew to the moon, fulfilling their promise. You can see them holding hands in the Shuttle. Also they marry after they came back from the moon. The machine kept as many memories the same as befor with little changes. For example at the part where Nick, Johnny, River and Izzy sat in that bar (where Watts had to eat some jars of pickled olives) you could see that Joey was there in the alternate memories.

The reason why Watts and Eva had the fight was that because Watts thought Eva was about to remove River completely, so that she and Johnny would never ever met again. But she only relocated her. They've met, regrouped on the moon, married, danced, build the house at the cliff close to Anya and Joey was still alive.

They never went to the movie though.

This is how I understood the story. I hope what I wrote there was understandable.  :seraismile:

the memories were alternated according to what john feels is right but the point is river isnt there, not until the rocket scene, a complete stranger. if you're talking about the faded memories in the credit rolls, they're just snapshots of the memory dive, not new memories. you can see in one picture eva was facepalming at dr watts. and heres comes the problem they went to the moon, fulfilling the promise...but the promise was so important because its the first promise of the couple which he now does not remember. its just not the same anymore

i

vanemare

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Re: Am i the only one..
« Reply #4 on: September 05, 2012, 08:04:59 AM »
the actual promise was to meet again at the carnival spot and if john didnt go, they will meet under the moon. John did not fullfill the promise.

Hmm. They wanted to meet at the carnival spot again next year. If one gets lost or forgets they wanted to regroup on the moon. So basically 2 promises. The first one wasn't kept, but that didn't matter, since they've met again in high-school where Johnny asked her out to the movie. They technically met again so there was no reason to regroup on the moon. Not until River died.

the memories were alternated according to what john feels is right but the point is river isnt there, not until the rocket scene, a complete stranger.

I don't understand what your problem is with that.

if you're talking about the faded memories in the credit rolls, they're just snapshots of the memory dive, not new memories. you can see in one picture eva was facepalming at dr watts.

No, I'm not talking about the snapshots during the credits. There were some cutscenes after the launch and before the credits which showed how all the memories of the marriage, of the get-together at the bar and of the house construction were recreated. With the difference that Joey was present all the time.

and heres comes the problem they went to the moon, fulfilling the promise...but the promise was so important because its the first promise of the couple which he now does not remember. its just not the same anymore

i

You're talking about the "meet under the moon-promise", right?
Why shouldn't Johnny remember it? This promise was his motivation to become an astronaut.


After rereading your first post, I understood that you're thinking the following:
In the alternate memories Johnny and River met at NASA, became astronauts, went to the moon, fulfilling their promise and then went different ways and never had to do anything with each other again. Am I correct?

r3kan

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Re: Am i the only one..
« Reply #5 on: September 05, 2012, 09:21:33 AM »


Quote
"Hmm. They wanted to meet at the carnival spot again next year. If one gets lost or forgets they wanted to regroup on the moon. So basically 2 promises. The first one wasn't kept, but that didn't matter, since they've met again in high-school where Johnny asked her out to the movie. They technically met again so there was no reason to regroup on the moon. Not until River died."

okay i guess ill have to put it the complicated way. you know how John feels guilty because he thought he approached river with selfish intentions? (the part where he was told to throw a rock(?) as far as he could). the promise symbolizes John's initial reason for loving River and thats the key to free john from his guilt. its not really about just meeting together. Going to the moon together is kind of like a response saying he remembers.


Quote
I don't understand what your problem is with that.
*warning personal philosophy rant* everything is wrong! your memories, good or bad, shape who you are, you cant just throw it away like that.


Quote
No, I'm not talking about the snapshots during the credits. There were some cutscenes after the launch and before the credits which showed how all the memories of the marriage, of the get-together at the bar and of the house construction were recreated. With the difference that Joey was present all the time.
ahh so the memories get altered again during the rocket launch. i guess i missed that part, thanks for clarifying. well this settles my complains although i gotta say this is quite awkwardly put just so they can force a good ending...


Quote
You're talking about the "meet under the moon-promise", right?
Why shouldn't Johnny remember it? This promise was his motivation to become an astronaut.


After rereading your first post, I understood that you're thinking the following:
In the alternate memories Johnny and River met at NASA, became astronauts, went to the moon, fulfilling their promise and then went different ways and never had to do anything with each other again. Am I correct?
1st question: i was pretty sure he became an astronaut because the desire of going to the moon(the promise) was burnt into his mind with the machine not because hes interested in astronomy.
2nd: no, i was just ranting on how john had all his memories with river altered just to fulfill a (now null) promise. but now that you told me the memories are altered again it cleared off my confusion

mayorangetrees

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Re: Am i the only one..
« Reply #6 on: September 05, 2012, 12:57:00 PM »
i just imagine the old man to say something along the lines of 'i am satisfied with my life but something seems to be missing. I have fulfilled my childhood promise but why was it so important? i dont remember...'

I think this is something that we as players tend to forget, that because we are satisfied with Johnny's life when we reach all the way back to his childhood and discover all these special memories, it's easy to forget that Johnny was a was not satisfied with his life. He's a man dying with regrets, ones he doesn't even really understand, but that matter enough to him that he's willing to risk losing all his good memories to have the chance to fulfill them, even superficially. As a player we look at his life and think it was good, if somewhat tragic, and meaningful, and with that knowledge might not want him to change it, but Johnny at the end of his life has an incomplete version anyways and that incomplete version is filled with a vague but overwhelming desire to travel to the moon, to the point he's willing to pay for a (probably) expensive operation to change his memories to reflect a more fulfilling life in the few days left to him. Whether he made the right or wrong decision is up to the individual, but I just think it's worth keeping in mind that Johnny wasn't dying at peace. He thought he'd "had a good run", but not good enough for him with what he felt, knew and how he saw his life.

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Re: Am i the only one..
« Reply #7 on: September 05, 2012, 01:07:07 PM »
I found the ending depressing; however, some memories still occurred like when they got married. They also end up living in the house above the lighthouse together.

Question Mark

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Re: Am i the only one..
« Reply #8 on: September 05, 2012, 01:24:06 PM »
@r3kan - Contracts are a -cuss- , so to say. If Neil had his way, they'd probably be in court in episode 2 instead of another patient's home. That aside, Eva thought her decision was the best for all those involved. They don't get to risk their jobs and being sued for breach of contract, and Johnny gets his wish. Yes, we do know that Johnny doesn't truly understand his wish (i.e. River) but he doesn't even remember that. He wasn't able to honor or at least remember his childhood promise to River, yet he probably still died feeling fulfilled. Even if most of his rewritten life is just a lie. That's kind of a layer upon layer of conflicts. In the end, only those involved (the characters and the players) bear the burden of having to carry those conflicting situations that is Johnny's life.

I think it just goes to show how the service of Sigmund Corporation is not a win-win situation for everyone but rather an ethical issue. I wouldn't be surprised if there are elements in society (in-game) that are vehemently opposed to memory alterations. Would love to see Neil engage in some verbal trolling against anti-Sigmund activists or something. :V
« Last Edit: September 06, 2012, 12:56:24 AM by Question Mark? »

Merlandese

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Re: Am i the only one..
« Reply #9 on: September 05, 2012, 01:28:50 PM »
I believe the way the game ended was the only way for it to retain the meaning and principle themes of both the game itself and johnny's life.

r3kan

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Re: Am i the only one..
« Reply #10 on: September 05, 2012, 02:18:32 PM »
i just imagine the old man to say something along the lines of 'i am satisfied with my life but something seems to be missing. I have fulfilled my childhood promise but why was it so important? i dont remember...'

I think this is something that we as players tend to forget, that because we are satisfied with Johnny's life when we reach all the way back to his childhood and discover all these special memories, it's easy to forget that Johnny was a was not satisfied with his life. He's a man dying with regrets, ones he doesn't even really understand, but that matter enough to him that he's willing to risk losing all his good memories to have the chance to fulfill them, even superficially. As a player we look at his life and think it was good, if somewhat tragic, and meaningful, and with that knowledge might not want him to change it, but Johnny at the end of his life has an incomplete version anyways and that incomplete version is filled with a vague but overwhelming desire to travel to the moon, to the point he's willing to pay for a (probably) expensive operation to change his memories to reflect a more fulfilling life in the few days left to him. Whether he made the right or wrong decision is up to the individual, but I just think it's worth keeping in mind that Johnny wasn't dying at peace. He thought he'd "had a good run", but not good enough for him with what he felt, knew and how he saw his life.
im sorry i should've clarified it more clearly. the topic was aimed at the moral issues of Eve's decision to erase the memories at the end.

@r3kan - Contracts are a -cuss- , so to say. If Neil had his way, they'd probably be in court in episode 2 instead of another patient's home. That aside, Eva thought her decision was the best for all those involved. They don't get to risk their jobs and being sued for breach of contract, and Johnny gets his wish. Yes, we do know that Johnny doesn't truly understand his wish (i.e. River) but he doesn't even remember that. He wasn't able to honor or at least remember his childhood promise to River, yet he probably still died feeling fulfilled. Even if most of his rewritten life is just a lie. That's kind of a layer upon layer of conflicts. In the end, only those involved (the characters and the players) bear the burden of having to carry those conflicting situations that is Johnny's life.

I think it just goes to show how the service of Sigmund Corporation is not a win-win situation for everyone but rather an ethical issue. I wouldn't be surprised if there are elements in society (in-game) that are vehemently opposed to memory alterations. Would love to see Neil engage in some verbal trolling against anti-Sigmund activists or something. :V
finally someone on the same channel!
i guess you're right, it is pretty childish to wish for a perfect ending. im just so frustrated that there good ending so perfectly set up and then reality just had to hit you where it hurts. yea it would be great if they could go through the ethical issues again in episode 2. id like to see a complete debate between eva and neil. whenever i think of neil fighting with someone else, the battle with the squirrel just pops up in my mind

EDIT: Hi, QM here. Don't mind this edit. I just fixed a grammatical error in my quoted message.
« Last Edit: September 06, 2012, 01:00:30 AM by Question Mark? »

Judedeath

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Re: Am i the only one..
« Reply #11 on: September 05, 2012, 07:18:14 PM »
http://freebirdgames.com/forum/index.php?topic=3710.0

I think this is the biggest thread about this.
Old River was as dead as a doornail, this must be distinctly understood or nothing wonderful can come of the story I am about to relate.

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Re: Am i the only one..
« Reply #12 on: September 05, 2012, 08:47:38 PM »
I find interesting how many people have negative thoughts about the 'ending' when in reality their problem is with the premise of the game.

The fact that the doctors have to fulfill a contract, and grant the wish the patient asked for, instead of solving his personal issues the way they see fit, is not a problem of the ending. Its the very premise of the game. They are a company that offer a service for money, they're never stated to be some volunteer individuals in some altruistic quest to solve inner problems in people.

I'm not saying you can't have problems with the ending, but if you claim there's something wrong about the ethics of the job, or how the problems weren't really solved but just gave a "happy" thought to the man before dying, then you gotta recognize you don't have a problem with the ending, that's not the ending, that's the premise of the game (sorry I sound like a broken record).
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r3kan

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Re: Am i the only one..
« Reply #13 on: September 07, 2012, 02:20:51 AM »
I find interesting how many people have negative thoughts about the 'ending' when in reality their problem is with the premise of the game.

The fact that the doctors have to fulfill a contract, and grant the wish the patient asked for, instead of solving his personal issues the way they see fit, is not a problem of the ending. Its the very premise of the game. They are a company that offer a service for money, they're never stated to be some volunteer individuals in some altruistic quest to solve inner problems in people.

I'm not saying you can't have problems with the ending, but if you claim there's something wrong about the ethics of the job, or how the problems weren't really solved but just gave a "happy" thought to the man before dying, then you gotta recognize you don't have a problem with the ending, that's not the ending, that's the premise of the game (sorry I sound like a broken record).
i get what you're saying and you're right, im mostly just frustrated with eva sticking to their company's ethics even thou its the right thing to do. now that a think about it,eva's decision being so down to earth and  the surreality of going to the moon really threw me off. one moment river was taken away from the memory, then next off to the moon they go. thats probably the source of my confusions

dont worry, everyone sounds like a broken record in discussion like this, i mean look at how much im writing just to convey a single point

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Re: Am i the only one..
« Reply #14 on: September 07, 2012, 11:44:01 AM »
Yeah I understand what you say. But I don't know if there was much left to do sans re-writing the whole game.

Given the premise of the game, Eva's decision is pretty much perfectly consistent. To be honest I don't like when games/movies portray characters in situations that are familiar to them but then react all altruistic because "its the one story we're seeing". For example (in this game) if they would've gone against their job and not fulfill Johnny's wish because they think he'd rather off with his memories, then that would've pissed me off because it doesn't make sense. Why now? they've been doing the job for a while, surely they've been in a similar situation before. Then why now play the hero card? It doesn't make sense and sadly it is often used in movies and games.

So if we accept that premise (else the game needs a complete re-write), then they find out the only way to send Johnny to the moon is to erase River (so he goes 'reunite' with her there). From there the only possible scenarios were:

-delete River, make Johnny go to the moon and die even more messed up than he was.
-'postpone' his meeting with River so he goes to the moon and hopefully meets her afterwards.

The first one would've made sense, but its too messed up. I would've accepted it because I don't have a problem with the premise (I actually like stories that aren't all happy, but deal with real issues, like when there's no right answer to something) but obviously most people would rage at it.
So the next best thing is the second option, in which Eva goes a bit out of character to actually 'care' about what happens to River, but without completely destroying the premise. So we get a less depressing ending (as far as the premise allows) that still makes sense. It was a good choice, in my opinion.

To sum up, if you look at the things that make the ending kind of a downer, my point is even clearer:

-River is dead. Nothing can be changed about it.
-The memory changing is just a happy last thought, that doesn't change anything really.
-The people involved are in it to fulfill the wish as it was represented in a contract. That is, literally. They don't have a personal interest to take action against the contract in the best interest of the client.

I think these 3 points is what usually bother most people (who have a problem with it), and the way I just represented them, makes it clear it is a problem with the premise. All of this is how the game is portrayed from the very beginning, its not something brought up at the ending.

Just think about it, if they would go against their job because they think they know better, why Johnny? why make it up to Johnny and not Nora? or any other client? It is clear they've been doing their job properly enough to not get fired up until now. The more I think about it the more problems I have with Watts actually, he should've just acted casually because he's used to these situations. But maybe he's always like this and Eva is saving him from getting fired by being the one who takes the right decisions.

By the way, suffice to say this is just my opinion, you're free to disagree and share your thoughts on it. I don't want to sound as if I'm always right or anything like that, I just tend to over-analize things ^^
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