Burn out or fade away?

Burn out or fade away?

That’s really the basic question of life, isn’t it? We push hard, burn bright and flare out, or we don’t push too hard and manage to make it to an old age. Sure, there are a few, a tiny fraction, that are outliers- like tossing a coin that somehow lands edge on and balances. But really, Death comes for us all – do we go out with a bang or a whisper?

Our answer doesn’t matter to the universe; each of us individually are insignificant on almost any scale. History won’t care either. At best we’ll be names on genealogical trees and maybe leave some traces on whatever the internet becomes – just little fleeting needles in the ever-increasing overwhelming haystacks of personal data, social media feeds, and YouTube comments. The past is gone. The future is ultimately not ours.

You see, what we _do_ have is the Now, and we own that wholly. No one else, no entity of any kind, has ever had this moment in which we now live. And no person and no thing in the future can have it. Nor can they take it away from us. It is only each of us, in our own moment, who have any control over it. It is only we who can experience the Now, we who grasp it, shape it, taste it.

This is the miracle of our existence. Our lives are a string of momentary miracles, each bit a truly unique snowflake like no other, in a context that has never happened before and will never ever happen again. We each experience those moments in a way no other person does, in ways that no other person can ever truly understand. Every moment is a secret that the cosmos has shared with us and us alone.

The cosmos has left us these gifts, and moved on uncaringly. We don’t matter to the universe. No god, no process, no principle assigns our lives meaning. And with that ultimately comes freedom. We create our experience, and our meaning, no matter what we do. To experience life at all means creating unique moments, utterly unique and impervious to entropy itself. We cannot in fail at life, in any way. Our lives literally cannot be meaningless.

And this allows us to be bold. Maybe not always in the worlds of practicalities and logistics, but in our thoughts and experiences if nowhere else. This allows us to shine in each moment and leave a trail of singular jewels that no other process in the universe could ever hope to replicate.

So, burn out or fade away?



Shine on, you crazy diamond.

A Few Tips for playing Detroit: Become Human

Scan is your friend

The Scan function (a.k.a. the mind palace) is your ability to scan the area and see objectives and things you can interact with. On the PS4/PS5, holding the R2 button scans.

Get used to this and use it frequently. You will see your current objectives, and interactables will appear with a yellow icon. You’ll be able to rotate the camera 360 degrees while in scan as well. There are a few other things you can do with scanning that you’ll discover throughout the game. If you aren’t sure what to do, scan and look around.

Some things to remember with scanning:

  • The game pauses while scanning, so if you need a minute to think, hit scan and take a breather.
  • The camera will stay in approximately the same place when you let go of scan. This makes it easy to reorient the camera if you are having trouble moving it around.
  • While most interactable objects will show up when you scan, not all will (including some important ones). Don’t let a lack of icon keep you from checking things out.
  • Most icons will disappear after you interact with the object. However, magazines will continue to have an icon even after you interact with them. That’s doesn’t mean there’s a clue or you missed something – they just always show active.

Beware the choice descriptions

You will get a lot of options to choose from in the game, especially during dialog. You’ll be given short descriptions of the options, usually one word. Sometimes what the character actually says will not be what you expected. Connor has this problem a lot. Characters sometimes have unexpected reactions to options as well. Be prepared that it is inconsistent throughout the game. Often, you aren’t so much deciding for the characters as much as you are nudging them.

Some hints on dialog options:

  • Options that are timed have a little meter below them that goes down quickly. If there’s no line, you can take your time on the choice. You can pause in the middle of a timed choice if you need to think.
  • Options with a blue corners around them are actions – they mean the character is going to do something rather than talk about doing something. It doesn’t mean that the action will have a better outcome, however.
  • Be careful with options labeled ‘Determined’, as in many cases the character will come across more aggressive than you expect (especially Markus).

The controls can be tricky

The controls can be a little tricky at first. The game will often show you what you need to do, but the symbols and indictors can be ambiguous, and they can change up things unexpectedly. The details also vary by platform.

Some things to be aware of:

  • There are a lot of quick-time events – when things get tense, be ready to hit buttons/move the stick or mouse a lot.
  • Depending on the situation, you may need to just press the indicated button once, press it repeatedly, or press and hold. Sometimes you’ll have to use multiple buttons at the same time. You might even have to hold one more more buttons while tapping another, or in conjunction with moving the stick/mouse.
  • If you are using a controller, expect to use all of the buttons. Also, you will have to use the track pad, and there are times where you will be expected to move the controller itself physically.
  • Use the early chapters to get used to the controls and the indicators that the game gives you.

Don’t sweat the flowchart

The flowchart has a lot of options and details, but if often a bit arbitrary in terms of what it records and where. I’ve seen a lot of people fret when they missed things or when there are blank steps in what they thought was a complete run-though of the chapter. Don’t worry about it – the game is meant to be replayed.

Some things to remember:

  • The entire flowchart cannot be accessed in one playthrough. There are branches only accessable by certain choices especially big choices.
  • A lot of steps on the flowchart are side details – did you see X, did you read the magazines, did you do Y on the way to Z, etc. You don’t have to fill them all in for a good experience and many have no lingering effect on the game.

Choose the right difficulty

The game offers two levels of difficulty for you to choose from in the Options. There are not a lot of differences, but make sure you choose the one you will enjoy most.

  • There a number of bad endings that are only available on the harder difficulty. If you are looking to see everything, you’ll need to use that. All good endings are available on both levels. So you won’t lose any real story if you play on easy.
  • Quick-time events are a little bit more complex and less forgiving on the higher difficulty. If you are one who is really bad at QTEs, use the less difficult setting.
  • When you are analyzing for clues, you will see lines leading from your cursor to the clue in the easy setting. In the more difficult setting, you’ll receive no hints like that.
  • Most importantly, you can go back and change the difficulty back and forth during the game. So adjust the setting as you need it.