Side note: After a brief unpleasantness in my life, I stopped writing my ‘A Thumb To The Eye’ column for a short time and switched to a news format and the name ‘Clap Hands, It’s Super Happy News Time!’ These columns will be archived in the ‘A Thumb To The Eye’ sequence.
Hi, we’re the Replacements
And we’re playing in a rock’n’roll band
And we’re having a good time
Rock’n’rollin ’til the break of dawn
Hey, where’s Tommy? Someone find Tommy
We’re out at on the road
Moving equipment, where’s the equipment?
Soon we’re going home
Then we’ll have a party
Rock’nrollin’ ’til the break of dawn
Hi, we’re the Replacements
And we’re playing in a rock’n’roll band
They Might Be Giants “We’re the Replacements” from Don’t Let’s Start
(Go buy it for fuck’s sake.)
Welcome to the end of everything. Or at least the death of my “A Thumb to the Eye” column and Alex Williams’ stranglehold on the News section. Now that he’s been overthrown and we are back to five news guys, I think we can all breathe a little easier. Seriously, though, thanks Alex, for giving me this spot and thanks Chris for putting up with my “issues” over the last month. And a big thanks to the rest of the Kliq for not kicking me out and sending me to rehab. I’m back in black and ready to start doing what I’ve always done here: something. And speaking of something, here’s some ummm… something. (Goddamn vocabulary…)
BUT FIRST; let me say this. The Tuesday slot is a big deal to me, personally. I read Bebito’s Down Lo with a keen sense of jealousy just one short year ago, wondering if I could ever join the ranks of guys who write about video games and get people to read them. Then, I watched Alex Williams climb from the depths of columning to the summit of NEWS writing. It’s like being a journalist, but different. I watched Alex in slight awe, even though I myself was a writer on the site by this point, when he replaced the dearly departed, but not dead, last I checked, Jeff Watson, on Fridays and went from being 20 percent of the News department to 40 percent. A God amongst insects (thank you, Sir Ian McKellon), Alex was reporting 2/5ths of our News. That’s like almost half, kinda! In the meantime, I found myself going into self-imposed exile. We’ll just blame that on Mid-Boss. From my Chuck Cave, I still participated in Kliq functions, aside from ‘Makeout with Cory Night’ due to a cold sore and waited for the dark period to pass. And then it did! Thank you, Eggplant Wizard! Once I accepted to light of Eggplant Wizard into my life, I found a meaning and purpose to all things, beauty in the dingiest of corners, tastiness in the blandest of places. With the help of EW and his head apostle, Alex Williams, I too have ascended to News column status. So, yay me.
What does all of this MEAN? Well, the “A Thumb to the Eye” is dead for a little while. But, do not weep, because a new Tuesday columnist is coming. Umm, yay! Best of all, the news format means lots more Chuck for you. Let that sink in a little….
Doesn’t it feel good? I know I love it. Well, enough exposition, let’s do some Newsing!
Warhammer 40k: Dawn of War
THQ and Relic have announced a new Real Time Strategy title based on Warhammer 40k. Ugh, not much more than that has been announced.
WTF? PC news in a 411Games article? Surely I jest. Nope, there really is a reason for me to tell you about this game, despite my non-PC gaming ways: so I can bitch a little. Or a lot. You might run and get a sandwich. Ready? Good. For those who don’t know, Warhammer 40k, and it’s fantasy father Warhammer, are miniatures games from England, produced by Games Workshop. Yes, I know certain gaming magazines called them pen and paper RPGs, but those were idiots writing, so disregard it. (The same certain magazine with the same initials as General Issue, claimed that the King of Fighters 2000/ 2001 games for PS2 were NEO GEO POCKET COLOR PORTS!?! I love the NGPC King of Fighters games, too, but they aren’t even SIMILAR to the 2000 and 2001 iterations. What on Earth were these guys smoking?) WH40K is, at it’s core, a squad scale, turn based wargame fought with lead and plastic miniatures. I have been involved in the hobby for almost four years now and I have known people who have played it since the late 80’s. Warhammer 40k is a game with rabid fans, a long and illustrious history, and a vast amount of backstory (“fluff”) to it’s credit. Too bad the games have all sucked.
Space Hulk. Space Crusade. Rites of War. Fire Warrior. All 40k games. All not that good games, too. Sure, Space Hulk is passable and Fire Warrior has it’s cool points, but at the end of the day, I’d rather read White Dwarf back issues than play one of these games. You will notice that, aside from Space Crusade, all of these games, and the newly announced Dawn of War, are either Real Time Strategy Games or First Person Shooters. Think about it for one second… A turn based strategy game is turned into an RTS or an FPS repeatedly to mixed results and reviews. Hmmm, why not make, oh I don’t know, a friggin’ turn based strategy game? It’s not like Tactics- style games don’t a.) have a built in fanbase of thier own and b.) make a whole friggin’ lot more sense. Why not make Bloodsport Puzzle and Journey’s Rugby League Manager while you’re at it? Would it kill these people to make a game that isn’t a license tacked onto a hack genre game?
THIS JUST IN: It would, apparently, KILL THQ to make a game that wasn’t some POS stock genre game with a license tacked on. My bad. Resume ranting.
I may be a little hard on GW and THQ, but this is a game I love and I am tired of seeing it used to sell substandard games. Either all involved need to make better games or GW needs to stop licensing thier baby out for a cheap profit. The name Warhammer could very easily become synonymous with shite games instead of the quality goodiness of the tabletop experience.
I’ll admit it, I bought this game the day it came out. I started a review for it. I played it for about 20 hours. Then I stopped. To be completely honest and frank with you, I found that this game was nothing but sheer nihilism in game form. This is not to decry the quality or content of said game, just to describe the mindnumbing anti-human tone of the game. I have watched more slasher movies and read more horror novels than is, admittedly, healthy, but Goddamn this game brings you down. I thought it might be just me, but, more and more, I hear people say the played it for awhile, but the weight of the game eventually brought them down. Then, I find out that New Zealand has banned it. Apparently I am not the only one that this game bothered.
It’s not even the violence or killing that make this game so hard to defend, it is the lack of any sort of moral North on the compass. There is no right or wrong. Hell, you aren’t even killing for survival. Manhunt may be the only game I’ve ever played where you basically play as a remorseless murderer. That being said, you have every right in the world to buy, play, and enjoy this game. It is well made and kinda fun. Seriously, enjoy. Unless, of course, you live in New Zealand.
Ummm, well, this is a little bit short. Sorry, but the gaming news is a little thin this week and I’m new at this. Next week, my Christmas preview and more news. AND I’ll unveil the final format for this monster. Have fun and listen to Quintron.