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Tycho / on Wed, Sep 10 2003 at 5:26 am

To Say Nothing Of The Hamburglar

If you have been inexorably drawn to unique new McDonald’s breakfast items, it may be because you have recently visited IGN.  We looked at it a lot yesterday, an hour or so while we ferreted out the hidden meaning of the McDonald’s Pantheon, and I want a McGriddle so Goddamn bad now it hurts.  I’m going to get one of each kind and eat them right there in the fucking parking lot.  I keep making a fist, reflexively.

I noticed on Evil Avatar that Tierra Entertainment have started to move on an update of Quest For Glory II, the absolutely necessary sequel to Quest For Glory I, which is also called So You Want To Be A Hero.  This is great news for you.  It’s great for both of us, actually - there are plenty of people playing games now who don’t have any idea what an Excruciator is, which is sad, because I can’t make oblique references to them.  There are projects now out to resolve that, so you can expect more discussion of the rift between the disparate halves of the Ur-Quan.  This is no different, and updating these hallmark, cornerstone titles for free release enriches our community beyond measure.  Sierra these days has a reputation attached to it, by which I mean a bad reputation.  But there was a time when absolutely no-one could touch them, they embraced technology like no other company and taught it astonishing tricks.  Fully orchestrated scores that output to MIDI enabled devices, before the advent of sound cards.  Two-hundred and fifty-six color art in King’s Quest Five - the effect of what were, in essence and in actual fact, paintings on your screen that you could play through and interact with can’t be overstated.  They even had an online gaming network, back when you were supposed to put a dash between “on” and “line.”  Take a look at this list of games - they pushed the envelope so far that it fell off the table.  Humor, even bawdy humor, horror, action, mystery, their publishing roster ran the gamut and consistently expanded the lexicon of electronic entertainment.  They purchased talented developers, and then those people did the same - Impressions, Papyrus, Dynamix, and Berkeley Systems are all well known to us. 

This is history, and listen up, because it’s Goddamn important.  If people can recollect and deify people for wearing jerseys and hitting balls, or jumping very high let’s say, then you and I can catalogue the moments particular to our own fascination and invest them with gravity and power. 

Also on the nostalgia tip, you have heard me regale you with tales of Wasteland - an inspiration for Black Isle’s superlative Fallout series, to say nothing of the very operation of my mind.  It is the architect of my expectations where a role-playing game is concerned.  But I rarely gave any credit to The Bard’s Tale, the fantasy series that provided the technology and gameplay that Wasteland was founded on.  It spanned three games on computers, saw some action consoles as well I believe, and even had an unofficial sequel called “Dragon Wars” that no-one seems to have liked very much.  I played Bard’s Tale games much later than they came out, as they included Sorcerers and whatnot, and my mother felt that games of this sort would have allowed the devil into our home.  I was steeped in superstitious nonsense as a child, and it’s a shock that I can traverse a courtyard or pass through a doorway without some kind of spoken oath or protective hand gesture.  In any case, I enjoyed them very much by the time I was able to wrest my thoughts and deeds from irrelevant tradition.  The progenitors of Devil Whiskey, a game apparently in tribute to the classic trilogy, also bear what must be considerable affection for the series.  For example, while I’m content to mention the game and bitch about my mom, they’re busy creating an entire game in homage.     

(CW)TB out.

like i do


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