Sydney continues to learn about the orbs with her characteristic aplomb.

I’ve used the dolly zoom gag before, but it’s such a prevalent effect that I can’t help it. Some could argue it’s passed into cliche, but that’s part of why it’s funny to me. That and usually when you see it these days it’s being used for comedic effect specifically because it’s melodramatic. The problem for my given medium is that unlike a lens flare or a shallow focus effect, a dolly zoom requires motion to actually play correctly, so you guys get a nonomatopoeia in place of me spending days trying to figure out how to do the gag in animated gif form or something.

Sydney’s experience here is lifted straight from my own. Not the clinging to a superheroine part, but developing mild acrophobia from video games. I can tell you exactly when it happened, too. Star Wars: Dark Forces. The first FPS Star Wars game, and the first game in the Jedi Knight series technically, since Jedi Knight 1 has the same main character. (Which means the real title of the final game in the series should have been Star Wars: Dark Forces IV: Jedi Knight III: Jedi Academy) Anyway, even though Dark Forces was a PC game it used checkpoints to save, and they were few and far between. It could take upwards of 45 minutes to beat a level and if you died before then, you’d have to play it over again. Also, the game was true to the Star Wars universe, in the sense that there were no railings anywhere. Combine that with instadeath fall catwalks and crags on slippery glaciers. Oh, there was also an awesome gun that fired a ball of compressed air. It was basically a rocket launcher, only the explosion of air at the end didn’t do all that much damage. It was mainly used for knocking Stormtroopers off instadeath fall catwalks. It wasn’t so awesome when some bounty hunter used it on you though. Sliding towards a crag on an icy glacier or getting knocked into the air by some weapon while on a catwalk definitely gave me a case of the netherclench.

Incidentally, Dark Forces made me appreciate why the Stormtroopers can never hit anything. The blaster rifle they carry is crazy inaccurate. The Imperial Repeater gun on the other hand… It’s one of my favorite FPSs of all time, assuming you can handle the Doom II/Duke3D era graphics, (which I grant can be fairly eye piercing on 22-inch plus monitors), I’d recommend checking it out. Here’s a Steam link and one for GoG.