I did my usual
cursory glance over notable forum threads to get
my feedback and it seems some people on one forum
that shall remain nameless have been calling me a
hypocrite for apparently liking Planescape
Torment despite it, too, being a monstrously
wordy game. My response: where the hell did you
get the impression that I liked Planescape
Torment? That, too, I found boring and couldn't
get further than the first world. I'm not angry,
I'm just confused as to how you made this leap of
logic. Admittedly I did show the box art for,
like, one second to illustrate a point but I
don't remember drawing a big sign over it saying
THIS GAME IS AWESOME MMM I WANT IT TO SPUNK IN MY
murders Guitar Hero 3 this week. I think that
was all I had to say. Wasn't it? Yes, probably.
Or not? No. Yes. Well, I finally added Art of Theft to the games page, there's that too I
This week's Zero
Punctuation: Assassin's Creed, as the title above
should give away. In summary: not good, not bad.
Sorry if that's a bland opinion.
By the way, some
of you may have seen this review someone did of Art of
Theft parodying my style. I mentioned it in the
FEAR review referencing a desire to possibly
commit arson murder. Well, that guy also sent me
the following email the other day:
were to be so bold as to assume that my
YouTube tribute review of your new game
"Trilby: The Art of Theft"
deceptively titled "Some
Punctuation" was the impetus for your
threatening request at the end of last week's
Zero Punctuation weekly review, I would
humbly like to request that you do not set
fire to my abode. Intercontinental arson
aside, was it really so upsetting to you as
to incite such rage? I meant no harm by it.
It was created solely to entertain my friends
on the Penny-Arcade.com forums. That was the
only place I posted a link to it; I never
fully intended for it to spread far enough
for it to enter your ken. Besides its shoddy
diction, mealy enunciation, weak humor, and
wishy-washy fanboyism at the end, was there
anything outstandingly upsetting about it? I
do realize the horror of watching your
creation quickly falling prey to imitators
lacking a proper grasp of the stylistic
intent of your originals, but at least it was
not a step-by-step tutorial on producing
cheap versions of the entertainment you are
now paid to produce. I must admit, though, I
have received a number of requests for such
instructions (along with requests that I die
for some reason). I do hope to hear from you
For the record,
I never had a problem with the review. I thought
it was pretty well done, although he obviously
hadn't played the game past the first couple of
heists, which undermined a lot of his points.
What I do have a problem with is people (for this
happens surprisingly often) who think the best
way to impress me is to talk at me like we're at
a fucking renaissance faire. I mean, christ,
"enter your ken"? What am I, a visitor
from the magical kingdom of Faggotry?
ZP this week is
the new FEAR expansion. Yeah, yeah, boo hoo,
why aren't I reviewing all the important new
stuff like Call of Doody 4 and Piss Effect. Fuck
you. I wanted the opportunity to talk about the
FEAR series. You'll take what I give and like it
you slut. Plus sometimes it takes a while for the
very newest stuff to trickle down to me from the
source so give me a god damn break.
Response to Art
of Theft has been a-pretty pretty good. As
always, we take on board what people like and
didn't like and keep it in mind for future games.
A slightly newer version has been uploaded to the
same URL as before that
(hopefully) fixes a crash some people were having
in heist 4. It also makes the button mashing
minigame in the same heist a little bit easier,
you crybabies. Download it again if you feel
personally affected by either of those issues.
Yeah, so those
of you who've already been to the Escapist
looking for new content to make your life
worthwhile you grasping fucks should already know
that my jet-setting lifestyle precluded the
creation of a new ZP this week. Instead, I rub
salt in the wound by telling everyone about my
awesome trip to Valve.
I'm going to be
out of the country for the next week or so, so if
you send donations or any other mail that needs
answering it may not be until next Tuesday that I
can get back to you. Or maybe I'll find myself
somewhere that isn't so backward I can't check my
Hotmail. Either way I'm not going to be updating
the site for this time and I gather the Escapist,
like the BBC, have a repeat lined up for my
vacant slot on Wednesday.
And since I like
to fire and forget, I've decided to release my
new game, so that there's a good week before I
have to worry about any crippling bugs people
might have found.
called Art Of Theft. The long
version is Trilby: The Art Of Theft,
because it features everyone's favourite dapper
renegade from the Chzo Mythos (I stress that it's
set in 1991, two years before 5DAS, so don't
think it's a continuation or anything).
AoT isn't an
adventure game, though. It's a mission-based
stealth platformer using a severely modified 1213
engine, with the emphasis on gameplay rather than
story. As a younger, more arrogant, more
complacent Trilby your goal is to infiltrate a
variety of buildings in the fictional Chapow
City, steal loot, achieve objectives and get out
again with the subtlety of a flickering shadow in
a ninja outfit.
Here's a link to
the game, generously hosted by my new friends at
the Escapist. It's got a readme included and the
game has a tutorial at the start so you should do
alright without much further elaboration.
I like to think
that my game design ability continues to improve
steadily. This one is fairly complex and littered
with secrets, so a couple of my loyal testers
have taken it upon themselves to set up a
dedicated forum for discussing the game,
techniques, secrets and speedruns. Do check it
out and sign up once you've gotten to grips with
my dodgy jury-rigged AGS-engine platform
What pisses me
off is when people say I'm not a 'real' reviewer
because I try to be funny. They usually say this
when I've slagged off a game they like. What the
hell do you define as a 'real' review, anyway? I
give my honest opinion on the games I play and
give reasons why I like or don't like them. What
more do you want? Is it because I don't put
percentages or stars out of five at the end?
Because I think that opinions on video games
can't be represented numerically?
The response to
my review of Phantom Hourglass is what brought this on,
incidentally, because apparently a bad Zelda game
is like a cow lying down in the road in India and
you're not allowed to complain.
Still waiting on
some music from Mods before I can think about
releasing the new game. Go nag him.
a strange thing? I agree with the point Richard
Dawkins made once that patriotism is the kissing
cousin to religious fundamentalism. Both demand
that the practitioner blindly trumpet the
superiority of one mode of thinking above all
others for no rational reason. And both also
discourage questioning the truth of the facts
offered because such a thing is somehow morally
wrong. I bring this up because I reviewed Medal of Honor: Airborne and some people seem to
have taken it all as a personal disservice to the
randomly-chosen land mass upon which they first
gained consciousness in this lifetime.
Let me add that
I know FULL WELL that you can steal money in the
second chapter to pay off the debt but you still
have to make 10,000 whatevers to achieve this end
and even if it doesn't take 15 minutes to do that
then it still feels like that long. So stop going
on about how I suck and can't play games.
Also, here's a
screenshot from a game I hope to release soon.
Once again the power to name a release date lies
in the hands of musicians.
enough, Orange Box gets reviewed this week.
There's a bit in
this review where I mix the titles of games with
numbers on the end with football results for
comic effect, eg "Team Fortress 2; Liverpool
3". This seems to have given many
correspondents the unintended impression that I
am in any way into football. Well, sorry to
disappoint, but I find football utterly tedious
and people who like it doubly so. Just wanted to
clear that up.
So I opened my
email inbox this morning with some trepidation,
only to find no hate mail but ten million fan
mails saying it's a shame I'd probably get hate
mail. I think people might be scared of me. Why
should there be hate mails, you ask? Only because
I reviewed Halo 3 this week.
Let me clarify
something to a certain kind of person who sends
certain kinds of mail. The games I review are
usually chosen for me by my editor or worked out
between him and me beforehand because I want to
cover them. The schedule can often be worked out
some weeks in advance. My point is, if you
suggest or even demand that I review a certain
game, the odds are heavily against me complying.
Even if you suggest a game that I later review it
was probably just a coincidence. So stop your
nagging, you cunts.
Punctuation, Peggle. You know the drill by
In other news,
remember those chaps who are making a full 3D
remake of 5 Days A Stranger in the Source engine?
Well, the project is still muddling along and has
reached the point where we have our own teaser
site for it. Yes, that's right, we haven't all
given up and gone home yet. I suppose you'll be
wanting the URL, then. Here you are, jerk. Do check out the
recruitment page if you want to contribute to the
VERY REBIRTH OF MAINSTREAM ADVENTURE GAMES.
to my list of webcomics last week was probably a
mistake, considering my new widespread
popularity, because I've been inundated by
suggestions for it since then. Now I have to
think aboutwhether I can be arsed to (a) read the
suggestions and (b) actually update the page with
new entries. Things don't look good for either,
it seems. Oh, you want this week's Zero
Punctuation? Fine, here it is. It covers Manhunt.
it seems anything that I plug in these front page
updates suddenly gets a traffic boost, maybe I
could use these powers for evil. I say, reader,
have you played Adventures in the Galaxy
of Fantabulous Wonderment? It's one of my AGS
games and probably the one I put the most work
into but it persists in being the least played
review is Tomb Raider: Anniversary, one of many unnecessary
remakes in the world today. Last week's was Bioshock but I forgot to link to
it. So now I'm linking to it.
In other news,
I've got a link for you: Your Webcomic Is Bad And
You Should Feel Bad. I still try to keep up with the
webcomic scene as my list of good webcomics should imply, and this
blogger says a lot of necessarily true things
about the big ol' circle jerk that is the
webcomic community. While I don't always agree
with some things he says he did rip on Ctrl-Alt-Del, which earns him several
billion points. He also writes wittily if
caustically, and sometimes I catch myself reading
him aloud in my Zero Punctuation voice. Check it
It's that time
of the week again. Zero Punctuation this week covers the
console wars in a thin attempt to buy time while
I play Bioshock. Next week: Bioshock!
By the way, you
know that update I wrote a while back about
character damage in games and how it should be
fixed? Please, please, please stop telling me
about Call of Cthulhu, because something like the
entire population of Luxembourg have beaten you
My second Zero Punctuation is now up. This one was
requested of me by my new masters because it was
their game of the month. Awkwardly it turned out
to be a good game but I managed to get my hate in
by hating other things.
Obviously my new
gruelling schedule of staying at home playing
games all day is going to affect the frequency
and content of updates on this site. I think
things are going to lean more towards 'news
section' around here from now on to deliver links
and information pertaining to anything
interesting concerning me. But I'm sure I could
work some witty commentary in somewhere. Like
something along the lines of how Americans are
fat and stupid.