I do not often do favors for people unless I really know and/or like them. The odds of me just randomly doing a favor for someone I'm not that close with are slim... but there are the occasions where I will do them. Maybe it's just a good day, or maybe the stars are aligned correctly in the sky above. However, I'm beginning to think this is a horrible horrible idea that I will never ever do again because of the tragedy that has fallen.
You see, dear reader, one of my roommates recently got himself an XBOX360. He created himself a new account and asked me to transfer all of his old files to my memory card so he could have them. Now, while I understand that the files are non-transferable between accounts, but I decided to do it for him anyway. Why not? I pop in my memory card and begin to erase everything on it. It's all going fine until I get to the point where I need to erase my gamer tag from the memory card. No big deal, right? Well, in the words of Lex Luthor in that God awful Superman Returns movie, "WRONG!" A little thing popped up that asked if I wanted to delete just the gamer profile or the save games as well. I said, "Well, I want to make sure the memory card is clean, so let's erase it all." And just like that, in the blink of an eye, all my files were gone.
Now, the thing that upset me was I was erasing off of my MEMORY CARD, not my HARD DRIVE, but in saying that I wanted to delete files off my MEMORY CARD, I ended up erasing all the files on my HARD DRIVE. What?! In what cruel world does this make sense? Did my XBOX suddenly get morphed into a Bizarro XBOX where by erasing one thing, I erase another? Am me talk not good now? And there is no undo button. There is no reset, there is no recover, there is no saving from this. My files are gone and all the work I ever put into any game ever is gone. Vamoosh. Hasta la vista, baby. You've been terminated.
On the one hand, this is not that bad. This gives me a reason to go back and replay some games I haven't played in a while. Motivation and what not. That hand, for the record, is incredibly dumb, and I hate it. On the other hand, the logical hand, this is annoying beyond all belief. Take, for example, my save game in Marvel Ultimate Alliance. I have spent hours playing through that game and getting every little thing. Do you know how hard it is to unlock the Silver Surfer? Getting him is a pain in the ass, but I did it. I had all the best armors, I had all the characters, and everything was at a power level over 9000! Not literally, but if I'm using Dr. Doom, I am unbeatable. And I was 4 achievements away from having every achievement that game allowed. I don't want to do all that work again! I'm going to have to, but I don't want to! What about Mass Effect and Too Human? Those RPGs are designed so that when you beat the game once, you take your awesome character and try the game on a harder level. I had just begun to play through Mass Effect a second time, and I never finished my second play through of Too Human with Nate. And what about all those games that I rented so I could see if I liked them? Time Shift, Mortal Kombat Vs DCU, Mirror's Edge, etc? All of it is gone. I planned to buy these games and pick up doing were I left off. Now I start from scratch.
Boo to you, Microsoft. When I had a chat with my mother later that day about life, the universe, and everything, I casually mentioned that I was annoyed over this. She said that the XBOX is essentially a computer and should have a reset button. But it doesn't. The files are gone, and I wish to God there was some kind of undo button, or some way to back up your files in case of emergency (and I understand that that is what a memory card is for, but for suggesting that you are an ass). Oh, my poor poor files. My poor poor games. I no longer look at these boxes lined up in a row as accomplishments, but rather a series of trials I must once again put myself through. I am strongly considering selling some games now, games that I can not see myself playing through from the beginning again. Assassin's Creed, we had a good run, but do I really want to start over from the beginning right now? Dead Rising, you know I love running through the mall and cutting up zombies with a katana, but can I really take the time to start from nothing and go through all of it again? I could barely get myself through a second play through when I first got my own XBOX, how am I going to do it now?
Oh, woe is me, woe is me. This is something XBOX should look into. Some kind of back up system or save all button that will save poor suckers like me. Either that, or make the system smart enough to know that when I'm erasing my memory card, it doesn't mean to erase the hard drive too.