Video games today are easy. There, I said it. Sure, you get your occasional Demon's Souls or Contra 4 or Bayonetta, but for every one of those you get ten other games like Uncharted or God of War, carefully-crafted rides that guide the player along a set track and give you lots of help, while very slowly ramping up the difficulty.
This isn't a bad thing--I've said it before that it's better when you can get everybody to enjoy a game, but the longtime gamer in me still wishes for games that physically and mentally try and hurt me (aside from DanceManiax, which has physically hurt me)--the frustration from the difficulty makes finishing the game feel that much more satisfying.
Ken Levine and his team at Irrational Games remember that feeling, and are aiming to recreate that with BioShock Infinite's new "1999 Mode," recalling one of the finest eras of PC and console gaming.
1999 Mode will have more permanent results to your actions, and you'll have to live with bad decisions for the rest of the game--no do-overs. Resource planning will be very important to your playthrough, and you'll need to develop combat specializations--weapons will be otherwise "useless" until you're prepared and trained up for them.
Levine says that 1999 Mode is for longtime Irrational fans from their System Shock 2 days, and I can't be grateful enough. Although personally, you know what I really think this game could do with?
A 1982 Mode.
What do you think? Will 1999 Mode be a hit, and give gamers real-feeling consequences and responsibility, or will it just be a crazy offshoot difficulty that will get passed over in favor of a more guided experience?