Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Going Postal 2.0

Can't remember the last game that made me fall off my chair laughing, ROTFL. After the failure of Quake Wars, Carmagaeddon, and Manhattan Project, I was fairly skeptical of even getting this to work... hah! Worked first time, as a pleasant surprise. No codes to hunt, cracks to download.
[Current score: Colaba Pavement 3, uTorrent 2.]
The graphics are a bit old; I remember playing the original 2D Postal back in '95, so this can't have been too far ahead, though the responsiveness of the Unreal engine is awesome. But it's a laugh riot because of the twisted, fast, and completely bonkers sense of humour that it overflows with.
'Save a Tree, Burn a Book.'
'Did you place an offering in the Donation Box? Then you are Forgiven.'
The ability to stick your shotgun up a cat's bum to use as a makeshift silencer.
The only, and repeat, ONLY, game in history I have played where I can pee on people.
The Church or Our Lady of Infinite Avarice, disgorging boomstick-toting priests to take on Osama clones.
Me getting captured by hillibillies and waking up... in the Gimp's leather suit, in his trunk.

The physics engine isn't up to HL2 standards, sadly; if you kick a corpse, there's a good chance it'll stick halfway in a wall, straight-edged and angular, until kicked again, and the 'rag-doll' effects are bit too ragdoll. Bloodsmears too smeary. Textures crude.
But is still so totally awesomely rocks. When will they build the next version with the HL2 engine?! :)

Though on a serious note, it kind of gets you thinking. This game is violent, disgusting, bloody, and disrespectful. And it's precisely for those reasons that it'll be loved by it's target audience. Even the protestors, most of the time, object on the basis of an idea, or a principle. A stereotype. Games are bad, they make you mad.

Does the human psyche actively seek out violence? Since the Deterrence principle effectively stopped war for the First-world nations, and now all nuclear nations, crime rates have been rising. I don't know if it's been directly since then, but it's close enough. Is crime - and all other forms of both real and virtual violence - a direct expression of the need to fight, and frustration at not being able to?

In primitive cultures, kids start fighting by fifteen. In more advanced societies, it's later, but the promise - and conditioning - begins from much earlier. It's only now, in the developed countries, that kids grow up knowing that, in a legitimate, socially acceptable way, fighting - violence - is not permitted, and never will be. Does that block off some outlet, some safety valve?

Notice how the US homicides graph spikes with the end of the last major war the US was involved in? I guess we'll know for sure when VR tech advances to the point that virtual violence is indistinguishable from the real. If actual crime rates drop - I'm vindicated.

In the meantime, I continue to go on a murderous citizen-hunting spree... and it's only Wednesday.


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