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Tycho / on Fri, Oct 22 2004 at 4:30 am

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The Game Is Called ‘Fumpkin’

People getting seriously into PC games in the last few years might not have any idea why I speak the name Peter Molyneux with reverence.  You might have picked up Black and White, accidentally touched your animal’s genitals and then uninstalled it in shame, not really feeling its flavor.  It would take a very long time to go over with you the Bullfrog era of computer gaming, when having access to an Amiga meant having access to some of the most inventive games ever stored on physical media.  These days, the things I play associated with his name rarely feel like complete games anymore - they’re more like half-finished models he used to be really enamored with until he caught the glint of some new fascination.  I got a little of the old feeling watching an extended preview of The Movies at E3, but I don’t know if I can let myself be hurt again by that man.  He’s secured quite a bit of new money recently, though God only knows what he’ll do with it.

I know that I said I would be done with the Pikmin contest at least a week ago, if not more than that - and I would like to pretend that I’m sorry, that would be the right thing, but for a host of reasons I can’t even mimic contrition.  There are a few main hurdles, not so much hurdles as giant dams, that have impeded the process.

Someone sent me a picture of their shit

I found that pretty vile.  I don’t know what universe you hair-coated mongrels dwell in, but the one I live in - and you should really check it out - is one where when a person tries to give you a videogame, you do not send him a picture of your shit.  Or send me a naked picture of a young man.  Or, and I am not joking, photographs or drawings of your “Flesh Pikmin.”  When I come across something like that, I seriously considered pawning these copies of Pikmin and putting the proceeds toward a firearm I could use to make myself die.

Fikmin is the scourge of man

When I said Text Description, I did not mean Pikmin Fan Fiction, or “Fikmin,” written from the perspective of Olimar or Louie or a Bulborb or whatever the fuck else.  Multipage treatises where you hold forth on Pikmin culture are one thing, and I did not disqualify you for doing so.  One some ridiculous level, I’m honored that you would expose yourselves to this degree.  Next time, don’t expose so Goddamn much.

I understand that your green Pikmin is meant to represent marijuana

You don’t have to beat me about the head and shoulders with it.  I must have gotten three hundred of these.  I can see the leaf you have drawn, I’m familiar with the plant you’re obliquely “reefering” to.  Without going into too much detail, I know why the quick cash option at an ATM automatically dispenses forty dollars. 

That isn’t to say that absolutely every entry was an affront, far from it.  But imagine eating a cookie where every other bite contains a human tooth.  Even if you really like cookies, you might wait a bit before returning to it.

In Sculpture, there are some very noteworthy entries.  We have Pikmin of perhaps questionable political views.  We have adorable, petite Pikmin.  We have Nemesis Pikmin, who stalk their foes relentlessly.  There are also the monstrous, alien Pikmin observed on LV-426, as well as slavering undead Pikmin whose hunger is eternal.  Especially compelling was Eyes Five’s alluring but deadly medusa Pikmin.  There’s also this, the only carved entry, but since it is carved from a human femur bonus points have been awarded.  Simon Fraser attempts to appeal to my affection for Warhammer, but is rebuffed!  That leaves us with Scott Richard’s devastating Wickmin composition and Sara Black’s mechanized horror, which I can’t decide between, so they both win.       

There are some quality entries in Images, too.  Behold the unstable Prikmin, or the delicious Cocoa Pikmin.  The Akira-inspired Supreme Being Pikmin devastates foes - and you will one day learn to fear Tan Pikmin.  There are Zombie Pikmin, as well as Dark Pikmin who growl and shudder in the night while Necromancer Pikmin raise a dead legion in the service of dark gods.  There are Pikmin who you could rightly call “juicy.”  There are Bondi Blue Pikmin with impeccable taste, Covert Pikmin entrusted with the survival of the free world, and Pikmin whose buds know only hunger.  Consider, for a moment, legendary vampire slaying Pikmin, or Pikmin refugees from other games.  There’s also just some Pikmin who don’t have much to offer, I’m afraid - and that’s sad, nearly as sad as the loneliest Pikmin of all, come to think of it.  Michael Firman covers virtually every other type.  He turned in an excellent performance, and he will win a copy.  However…   

One fellow sent me a series of Pikmin, which I call “The Derek Jensen Collection,” that consists of no less than six discrete species.  He’s got some cool ideas for how they’d play out in-game as well, and that’s something I would like to recognize. 

In the text department, as I’ve told you, there was much in the way of storytelling within the strict confines of the Pikmin universe.  Before, I might not have thought there was really room for it.  I loved Nick Kloiber’s take on Green Pikmin which could be thrown into stacks and used as bridges and ladders - motherfucker gets a copy for that.  On the other hand, Trevor Bab’s brooding prose on the topic of Dark Pikmin is so ridiculous that I have no choice but to reward it as well.  I want to live in a world where immediately upon writing a short story about baby plants that hum with ancient evil, you are richly rewarded by a man in a distant city you have never met.

(CW)TB out.

to train them is my cause

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