Sep 26, 2007

The B-Game Competition Mega mini Review Part I

Part I - Part II - Part III
Really, why stick to B-Movies when B-Games can bring you all the silliness, all the kitschy soon to be cult aesthetics and all the artsy humor you crave? No reason at all and the B-Game Competition organized by The Independent Gaming is here to prove it. On the other hand, you, dear readers, should be here downloading games and voting to pick a winner among the 29 awfully good freeware games that entered the B-Game compo (oh, and Independent Gaming has quite a few pointers on indy game compos here). As for me, guess I will probably just stay here and review every B-Game submitted in a 3 part mega review feature thingy complete with mini reviews or something like that.

The post you are reading is rather obviously the first part of said feature, so, uh, expect the other two to appear before October 15 -the final voting day. Oh, and the games aren't reviewed in any particular order.

The 100-in-1 Klik & Play Pirate Kart
Well, this outrageous mini game collection is just like those old sometimes pirated multicarts for the NES or C64, only filled with weird yet smartly sarcastic humor and coming as a freeware indy production for the PC. Featured games include such offerings as Kick the Habit, Kick the Hobbit, a left-to-right simulator and apparently the first ever offline MMORPG. Parody aside, most of the games are (deliberately) unplayable and rarely sport more than 1 level, even though simply browsing through them in the vain hope of finding a deranged gem can make for a couple of pointlessly spent smiling hours.

Mario Inna Space
If a simple jumping game with beautiful graphics, Mario and immensely frustrating gameplay is your thing, then you'll definitely love this one. Then again I'm not convinced Mario could ever make it to the flag pole he's supposed to reach. Still, a cute sadistic effort all in Visual Basic!

SM Word
SM Word requires a microphone into which you'll be shouting while banging your keyboard in order to defeat those evil Word pop-ups. Brilliant, with absolutely no entertainment value whatsoever.

Wei├čer Punkt in der Schwarzl├╝cke
Another non-game, but also an excellent comment on video gaming, if of course video gaming was indeed widely conceived as art, which it isn't. All the player has to do is aimlessly move a white pixel on a black background. Not very exciting eh? Well, add a brilliant in game director's commentary, a making of gallery and some hilarious game previews and you got 15 quality minutes. An absolute must, described as a seamless marriage of neo-postmodern minimalism, Kant's Theory of Judgment, and cutting edge digital manipulation, that reflects man's inherent desire for self-actualization.

Betasuppe is shockingly enough an attempt at a proper game, even though one named after a Norwegian soup and claiming to be the first ever text controlled side-scrolling platformer starring Colin. Actually it plays more like a cross between a text adventure (complete with inventory) and a Sierra parser game like say Larry 2. Dying is rather easy, the "die" command makes it easier, the audiovisual part is in brilliant 16-bit and the game despite being extremely short (well, I think at least) is not ridiculously easy. Worth a try methinks. Oh, yes, and do try typing random stuff in; it's an i-f tradition.

Hermies The Game
Hermies are are bisexual creatures consisting of a rod and a hole, whereas Hermies The Game is all the video game exposure they will ever get, and it's a simple and not very taxing game either. All you have to do is rape other hermies while protecting your hole. Fun for a few seconds, filled with juvenile humor and fantastic sound effects, and happily presenting us with one of the sillier intros in video game history.

Poizoned Mind
What can I say about Poizoned Mind besides stressing the fact that it's probably the best game of the compo and definitely the only one with enough flair to tastefully include a transvestite, an Elvis impersonator, a proper punk, Death, chess and still be funny? Well, now I guess I could go on and rant about the excellent music, subtle top quality humor, great writing, interesting story or quirky characters, but I won't. Let me instead praise the game's interface for it opens a brand new path for interactive fiction to explore and manages to incorporate graphics that serve but don't substitute the text. Menu driven gameplay is a nice touch also. As for beating the game, let's just say it can't really be done. PM is more of an exploration thing without any real puzzles and a very satisfying one at that too.

Wrath of Transparentor
Love the name. Really do. Transparentor... nice, woody sort of word. Anyway, this is an action game where you play the invisible monster and apparently YOU ARE MONSTER FIGHT! Quite a few intriguing and smart techniques are used to let you know where your invisible avatar is and everything starts promising enough. Sadly after the tutorial stage the game quickly gets repetitive and I just lost interest. Still, a good looking weird little arcade-y thing.

Burnham Striker and the End of Civilization
Witness one man's valiant quest to evacuate his bowels and unravel a conspiracy so smelly, it reached the nostrils of Zeus himself! That's the official word on BSatEoC and what you see right above this humble mini-review is a screenshot showcasing the sheer brilliance of its pixel-art graphics. Problem is I can't be sure if it's a good game or not. I'm just too shite at it. Heh. On the other hand, I've seen people discussing something like a third level which does sound quite promising. Better download it yourselves and give it a try. Let me know if you can enter the buildings please.

Related @ Gnome's Lair: The Indy Adventure Games Guide, Nintendo Wii Retro Gaming, a DOOM rant, Epic Saga!


  1. Bravo! Bravo! (applauds till his hands bleed...takes off shoes and socks and claps with is feet while bandaging his hands....) Bravo!! Bravo!! ... Poizoned... what a discovery...

  2. Jeez Gnome! I lost it half way through the post, but then you are much cleverer than me and understand philosophy and all that...

    What were we discussing?

  3. Nice!

    Even some of the game descriptions have the B-movie feel :P

    Currently downloading all the games with unnecessarily excessive amounts of blood :D

  4. Thank you, thank you Elderly. And thank you too mother.


    Really glad you appreciated Poizoned too. I was thinking about a game like that for quite some time...

    Uhm B-Games dear Father. Actually think Inasion of the Body Snatchers only in video games.

    Aye derek! :)

    Ah, you're still around, arent you roys? Great, great! Now enjoy those paranoid little thingies...

  5. (unable to clap any more)

    hail Gnome....!!!

    (hails gnome...)

    I may have wrapped these bandages too tight... (inspects foul smelling bandaged hands....)

  6. Heh! I bet a couple of my old games are in that Klik N Play collection :)

  7. (brings elderly new pink bandages and a lovely pet mouse)

    Ok, ok, thank you, that's more than enough. See? Even mother stopped clapping...

    Brian! Long time no see... I'll check em out (unless of course I already have). Cheers!

  8. Yep the most memorable ones I played among the four or five I downloaded was GunLimb and Rap Attack - unfortunately the memories weren't exactly pleasant :D

  9. Shhhhhh... They are coming next... Don't tell anyone...

  10. (puts bloody stump to mouth..) shhhh more coming! your secrets safe with me...

    a mouse... deja vu!!!

  11. Fuck! They are MAtrixing the Matrix! Better use a divrsion... Brought the maracas, have you?

  12. I didn't investigate that KNP pack before posting, but I assumed it was a collection of old Klik N Play games that someone had gathered. If so, I'm sure there are a few really crappy ones I did back in the 95-98 timeframe. If not, my bad :)

    gnome: hey right back at ya! Been busy running a restaurant, but I'm still (slowly) working to finish my game, which now has improved enemy AI in a few cases. Still no time frame for release, but hopefully it won't be too much longer :)

  13. Restaurant... happy business... you will let me know when it's done though, won't you?

  14. maracas! maracas? thats the thin crispy bread made with maize flour... or is that tortilla... no wait a tortilla is a reptile... must sit down...

  15. I played Poizoned Mind on the strength of your recommendation Gnome (well, that and the fishnets!) and I do have to say it is absolutely brilliant. The mood, the music, the deliberate lack of word wrap. Very evocative!

    I shall have to make myself play a few more of the other games, so that I can feel comfortable voting for it as the best :D

  16. No, no, Elderly dear, it's those silly noise producing things you bang while dancing Salsa... Then again, the favellas tend to prefer hardcore hip hop...

    Kde: a) thanks for taking my recommendation seriously -that's shocking b) I'm really glad you enjoyed Poizoned Mind. Vote for it please, as I wont be voting...

  17. favellas? hip hop? what are you trying to do here? (scratches head...attempts to hop his hip.. dislocates hip....)

    aaagrrrrhhhhh! pain! pain.. help por favella.....

  18. (dresses up as a witch doctor vacationing in Brazil)

    Oh dear... (sips some caipirinha)

    You tried hoping a hip? That's a ghastly eh...

    (sips some more)


    Better take some aspirin I gueshh

  19. (writhing in agony.....) thanks doc!... whats that your drinking?

  20. Huh? Oh nothing... Brazilians seems to love it... couldn't be too alcoolishhh... Yesh!

    Want some with your asper... aspirid... eh... thingy?

  21. Brian, the 105 games comprising the 100-in-1 Klik and Play Pirate Kart were actually made by a team of 17 people within the space of 48 hours. It's pretty much the greatest achievement of my life.

  22. Oh, and since we found you Jeremy... well, congratulations are in order!