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34 Cliches of Christmas
The Cops Forgive & Forget
By Cyril Lachel     |   Posted on December 20, 2007   |   Episode 29 (Show Archive)  

   

It's that time of year again, a time when Defunct Games celebrates the holidays by posting a daily theme article that should inform and delight gamers all over the world. This year we're taking a look at the video game cliche, the type of thing we've seen time and time again in all generations of gaming. Is this cliche realistic? Does it need to go away? These are the types of questions Defunct Games will be asking over the next month. Join us as we celebrate this joyous season with the 34 Cliches of Christmas!



Don't worry Grand Theft Auto III dude, all you have to do is hide out for a couple of days and they'll forget all about that armed robbery stuff!
As Seen In: Grand Theft Auto series, Saints Row, Crackdown, The Getaway, The Godfather: The Game, and every other sandbox game that has sprung out of the success of Grand Theft Auto III!

What Is It? It's the idea that no matter what you do, if you wait long enough the cops will simply forget about you. I don't care if you were trying to pull off a dramatically complex bank heist that would turn into you blowing up the White House and murdering hundreds of innocent civilians on your attempt to flee the scene of the crime. According to game logic, if you wait long enough the cops will simply forget about you. That means that if you ever get the inkling that you're going to need to hide from the cops for a few days, perhaps you should plan ahead and pick up a new game or some movies to watch. But don't worry; you won't have to wait it out for too long. Because in most "sandbox" games time moves faster than so-called "real time." You can easily wait out two or three days, that might as well be a bathroom break. And to think that there are people who complain about Grand Theft Auto and its clones.

Is It Realistic? The cops just watched you gun down one of their fellow officers as you were running out of the store with a bag full of money. The cops are understandably upset and filled with

I can only imagine how chaotic it would be if the police really did forgive and forget. It would be like Detroit!
vengeance; each and every one of those officers wants to get his revenge on the punk that would do this to their friend. The only thing left for you to do is run ... run as fast and as far as you can before the police catch you. It's not going to be easy to run away from the cops, out of nowhere you'll see their helicopters keeping chase overhead, armored vehicles are starting to show up, and why is everybody shooting at my tires? But don't worry, you know that if you make it to the Spray & Pay the cops will lose track of you and you can go back to living your homicidal life. There's just one problem, in the real world the cops do not forgive and forget. Even if they didn't catch you coming out of the Spray & Pay, they have enough clues to track you down. Heck, you aren't even making it hard for them, you're walking around in the middle of the day with a gun in hand. In the real world the cops do not forgive and forget, and that's why this cliche is not very realistic.

Is It Overused? As unrealistic as it is, the idea of losing the cops for good works well in a video game. It would be no fun if no matter what you were doing you had to look over your shoulder to make sure you didn't pass by a cop. Then again, that could be the one thing that rejuvenates this sub-genre. As it is, I doubt I would have had as much fun in Vice City and San Andreas if I could never shake the fuzz.

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