One of the games I was recently curious about but not quite sure whether I want to buy it was Rockstar’s Red Dead Redemption 2. The novelty of open-world games has long worn off for me, and Rockstar’s earlier title, Grand Theft Auto V, the most recent game of that genre I played, was a relatively frustrating experience for me. The issue with those narration-driven games is that they primarily want to tell a story. Gameplay mechanics seem to play second fiddle. As I was on the fence regarding Red Dead Redemption 2, I thus checked out some gameplay video, which looked rather boring to me as you spend half the time riding from A to B, a quarter of the time engaging in sub-standard third-person shooting or brawling mechanics and another quarter watching cut scenes. The story was not particularly gripping either. Compared to the output of the Japanese, Western stories seem to hit you over the head with a
In Red Dead Redemption 2, you spend most of the time being the right hand of the leader of a gang of outlaws. The story is driven by this gang attempting one robbery after another, while law enforcement is on their heels. Things never go as well as planned, and to make up for lost time and money, another great idea is easily found. They just plan to rob a bigger bank. One reason the gang is doing increasingly poorly and is thus tempted to seek ever-greater risk is that there are rats among their midst. Yet, the gang also enters a vicious circle: one failure begets another. Their numbers dwindle. But to make up for past losses, they need to seek greater risks, which entails a greater risk of failure. The eventual dissolution of that gang is obvious very early.
As tragic as the fate of our virtual gang of scoundrels may be, the bigger tragedies are written in real life. Indeed, the gang’s search for that one robbery that will allow them to retire in the tropics reminded me quite a bit of the greed and stupidity that is so endemic in society, often afflicting men. The protagonists in the game dream of making a boatload of money by robbing a train or a bank so that they can check out of society. This is just like your typical member of the underclass frivolously spending money on lottery tickets. That big win is always just around the corner, yet remains ever out of reach.
The dream of having so much money, ideally acquired through some kind of get-rich-quick scheme, is the main driving force behind many
When looking at the biggest names in the “manosphere”, Roosh V comes to mind. He is by probably a wide margin the most successful guy in this niche. Yet, what did he really manage to achieve? I am very certain that however much he made with his books and talks, he could very easily have made with an average job. Now you may interject and mumble something about “freedom” and “being your own boss” or any such gibberish. I don’t know Roosh V personally, but I know people who said they met him in real life. According to some of them, he has a side-gig as an English as Second Language teacher. Even if this is just a necessary evil for him to get a visa, it is still the case that it seems that he has to live in countries with a low cost of living to stretch his money. I would be very surprised if his income is above the median in the United States. Of course, just like with “digital nomads”, the issue is that they can’t reside in those foreign countries forever.
What all those people have in common is the desire for a shortcut, which explains basically all scams out there. Just think back of the seduction community, which promised guys that instead of working on their looks, status, and money in order to improve their dating prospects, they only have to memorize a bunch of bizarre “routines”. More recently, a lot of cryptocurrencies have been hawked, with the same promise: put your money a ludicrous venture like “Red Pill Coin” — yes, it really exists — and watch your money grow exponentially. Those guys always look for that one weird trick that would get them ahead of everybody else. Instead of playing by the rules, they think they are way above that. However, you can rest assured that most anybody who disparagingly speaks of “wage cucks”, while chasing hare-brained schemes, is not able to get a proper job. Those are the people who could not bother making an effort in high school or at university, and now, facing less-than-stellar prospects, they think they can somehow game the system. Many will need decades to realize their folly. Some will never get to that point. It is a tragedy.
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