Wednesday, September 23, 2020

It's the "Audible Thud" of Writing Competitions

We're about a week away from another boring-ass Interactive Fiction Competition. Critics such as bloviating douche-bag Patrick Mooney are gearing up to write scathing reviews to make himself feel like a big man and humorless cunt Jacqueline Ashwell is ready to ban any author that dares to fire back at him. Welcome to the soulless, sterile, stifling safe-space we call The Interactive Fiction Community.

It's a community so eager to glorify their annual shit-show that community members will post embarrassingly inane shit in the forum. Some members are so lazy that they will actually post a huge mega-list of their review of the games' pictures and blurbs. That's right, they're not writing a review of the game. (After all, playing games and writing thoughtful reviews is difficult.) So they are basically posting reviews of games they haven't played. Let me ask you this. Have you heard of a music critic reviewing albums based solely on the cover. (Yes, thorough essays and books have been written discussing album art. But has Rolling Stone ever published articles of reviews of upcoming music without hearing the music?) It's like many things with this community. Ideas sound good at first but if you think about them for a moment, you see how fucking asinine they are.

Now they're discussing giving each other rewards for reviewing competition entries. That's right. They want to pat themselves on their backs and suck their own dicks for the blithering "insights" they give to make themselves feel intelligent. I wonder if you get extra rewards for being a shitty little bitch about it.
Also, some idiots have tried to comment on my blog to let me know how judgey they are about my opinions. Sad, really. What's worse, me ranting on my own blog or people commenting on my blog about it? (They're currently furiously refreshing their browsers wondering where their comments are.)
Anyway, I will probably review the real entries (that is, not any "choice" games. If I wanted to read a children's story, I'll pull out one of my old Twist-a-Plot books.)
I sure hope I get rewarded for my ability to write a review!! Thanks, Interactive Fiction Community!

Saturday, August 22, 2020

What the IF Community wants, the IF Community gets.


IF Comp is around the corner. Time for the latest crop of Twine, I mean, various authors submitting their stuff in the hopes of sycophanitically harvesting votes by creating boring efforts full of IF Community fan-service. Also time for the (unbelievably untalented) critics to pretend to know what they're talking about and write shitty reviews in the hopes of saying something that sounds clever because it's mean-spirited or they'll take a shit entry and inflate it to be something totally genius in the hopes of sounding like a trendsetter. The IF community pretends to want certain things but then, once examined, are revealed to actually only want to hear their own voices, smell their own shit, and sit on a high horse waving to the plebeians below.
So what do the IF Comp judges want?
They want a game with a sense of immersion but they'll fault you if you "describe too much" or, god forbid, include a superfluous item/room/NPC. In one of my games, in the first room, there is a crystal ashtray on a desk that the player can take. It serves absolutely zero purpose in the game. There is literally nothing you can do with it. I put it there because the room was the office of a private detective in the 20's. Of course it's going to have an ashtray. So of course, the retards in the IF community got totally bent-outta-shape about it. It completely gob-smacked them. They were baffled beyond coherent thought about why this ashtray would exist.

The IF community will find something to ding you on. You can make the almost-perfect work of IF and someone will try "examine sun" and if the sun isn't implemented, expect 2/5 stars.
The shit they discuss on their forum is utterly asinine. You'd think it was a forum for grade schoolers. They ask if red herrings are okay to use, for example. This is how stripped down they want things to be. Red herrings are a staple of fiction for centuries. But no, the IF community knows best and thinks that if you have something in your game that doesn't specifically steer the player on the rails that the author prefers, then you're an irresponsible monster.
They love to nitpick about authors using phrases such as "the fact that" and "seems to be", thinking these are poor choices. This is actually a total misconception. It was written in one text book back in the 50's and the internet culture took it to be true. In reality, there is nothing wrong with these phrases and seeing who comments on your use of these over your actual writing will immediately expose the bloviating assholes from the potentially legitimate critics.
Recently, an update to the IF Competition's rules or some shit was posted. So, I inquired about Jacqueline Ashwell's totalitarian hold she has on who gets banned from the comp and who doesn't. She does this "without any chance of appeal" because listening to two sides of a story hurts her small brain. Every asshole on the forum chimed in as if any of them has any idea what I was talking about. Some posted whole essays complete with bullet-points and what-not. I didn't read any of it because, as I said, what the fuck did any of them know about the situation? But of course, they all had to pile on so they can hear their own voice in the "conversation". Then Patrick Mooney decided the thread wasn't about him enough so he posted a gigantic essay about what went down between me and him despite the topic being about Jacqueline's power in the IF Comp. Everyone of course praised his courage in coming forward and talking about how horribly he's been victimized by me. Again, all of this was tangetial to the topic. 
The IF Community: "You Can't Fix Stupid"

Monday, May 25, 2020

Jacq Ashwell Just Plain Sucks Ass, Too

Some may wonder why I have such issues with ignorant, socially-deficient, genuinely stupid (and therefor aggressively frustrated) bags of trash like Patrick Mooney and Jacqueline Ashwell. You may or may not know that I was banned from the IF Competition. Why? Because Patrick Mooney wrote a totally mean-spirited, shitty, angry review of my game. It was a review that was so vicious, it completely belied his obvious agenda to simply write a hit-piece against me. So I fired back and prize-pig Jacq Ashwell banned ME from the competition. Here's the fucking thing: Mooney would be more than able to submit a game to the competition (if he actually had any writing ability whatsoever). That's the example that perfectly illustrates why Jacqueline Ashwell is an ignorant cunt and anyone in her little IF competition committee is an asshole, too. It's perfectly illogical and perfectly shows why they just fucking suck as comp runners, as community leaders, and simply as people. They can all drop dead of Covid-19 for all I care. Jacqueline Ashwell must've attended Aaron Reed's class on how to be a worthless, illogical comp organizer. It's totally elitist to ban an author for firing back at a mean-spirited critic, but say nothing to the critic, and, in fact, he would never be banned for his unprofessionalism. What's that show you? Can you say "favoritism" or "black-listing"? What a shitty community populated by shitty people. I'm glad I'm no longer a member of their retarded clique. Jacqueline Ashwell is an ignorant cunt and Patrick Mooney is a talentless, fat, ugly, stupid loser who has to lash out at more talented people to make himself feel less of a failure. His email is pmooney@cheerful.com. Feel free to spam it.


Edit: Once again, Mooney is trying to comment on my blog, completely ignorant of my already explained fact that his shit goes right in the can so all I see is his name. He probably wanted to congratulate me on calling him out on his shit yet again.

Thursday, May 14, 2020

Text Games For The Retarded

For all its blustering virtue-signaling and pompous posturing, the IF community has gone out of its way to accept into its fold any half-baked, poorly coded, inside-joke and asinine, time wasting "experiments". Let's talk about a few. First, there's Depression Quest by Zoe Quinn, Patrick Lindsey, and Isaac Schankler. I can see the pitch now, "What should the game be about?"
"Something fun! Something people want to experience!"
"I got it! DEPRESSION!"
It's not a game. It's most likely a fugitive college essay gone rogue. It's even won awards from shit you've never heard of. It's fine to make a "game" like this, as an educational tool. But with such an absurd title, it looks like it wants to be a fun, interactive story or something. I mean, c'mon, the word "Quest" is in the title, as if that word has ever been used outside of a gaming milieu. I mean, is the player on a quest to GET depression?
It's just another example of how the IF community will embrace it if it's SJW or "woke" in any way, regardless if its an asinine piece of shit.
(Normally, I put the game's artwork as an image in my posts, but I guess award winning games don't need to upload any.)
Porpentine representin'
Next is "You Are A Turkey!" by Jacqueline Lott (Ashwell). I can't blame Jacq too much for such a shitty game since A) she states she got the idea by a throwaway remark in a chat room likely because she is bereft of anything remotely interesting in her ignorant skull and B) she's about as much fun as diarrhea. But, given this topic, I'd say that maybe a profoundly retarded person might find Turkey! amusing.
Next up is anything at all by Porpentine. I couldn't decide on a specific title as they were all the same, really. Each work contains broken links, nauseating colors and impossible to read text (for anyone over 25). That's when I realized that any of her titles fit the topic. Snarky teens, angry lesbians screaming from the toilet, and retarded people are the demographics that would enjoy Porpentine games.

And finally, just to be sure the IF community's gynarchy doesn't get their panties in a twist and accuse me of attacking only women, I bring you a MALE person's retarded game: J. Robinson Wheeler's Being Andrew Plotkin.
First of all, can you be any more of an ass-kissing twat with such a hagiographic, peer-worshipping game? It's akin to, say, me getting to attend a writer's workshop taught by Stephen King and my first essay assignment is titled "Isn't Stephen King Fucking Awesome?". Unbelievably, the game failed to resonate with the community. Sure, everyone gave it 5 stars because the name "Andrew Plotkin" was in the title, but the people who actually played it, aside from a couple of Plotkin sycophants, were underwhelmed at the idea of playing as some computer nerd unheard of outside of the IF community. Dorothy Millard of SynTax said it succinctly with "Being Andrew Plotkin is meant to be a humorous game but I failed to appreciate it or to understand most of what it was about."
Nonetheless, the game garnered awards from the community, again, because Andrew Plotkin's name is associated with it.

Saturday, April 11, 2020

Spring Thing 2020 - "The Land of Breakfast & Lunch" by Daniel Talsky and Rabbit Rabbit (?)

In an effort not to sound anything like The Living Ham, I will try to talk about this game without insulting it or its author too much for wasting my fucking time. 
If 77 Verbs is a tutorial for parser commands and if The Prongleman Job is a futile effort from an author who wanted to (unsuccessfully) use a parser to make a Twine game, then The Land of Breakfast and Lunch is an aimless coding exercise that gives no direction and offers no reward. I guess Spring Thing 2020 has devolved into an "everyone gets a trophy" grab-bag of garbage. Well, that's about as much as Aaron Reed can handle, I guess, given his limitations.
I really wanted to speak highly of these parser games from the "garden traipse" or whatever the fuck it's called, but man, these authors really shit-the-bed with these titles.
Better luck next time, gang. You'll get the hang of this eventually. It's not like you're a community run by egos and fueled by pathetic obsequiousness or anything.

Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Spring Thing 2020 - "The Prongleman Job" by Arthur DiBianca

One thing that's kinda annoying is when IF authors feel the need to tinker and fuck with shit that seriously doesn't need to be fucked with any further. Like making your own parser. Who the fuck does that? Do you understand what it takes to make software to construct interactive fiction? Inform7 is a work that's been years in the making and still being perfected. For an author to think he or she can just whip-up a quick parser game from scratch is asinine. It's like being a guitarist and being offered either a Fender Stratocaster for a gig or the option to make your own guitar real quick.
I don't know what DiBianca used to make The Prongleman Job (if he wrote it somewhere, no, I didn't bother to find and read it) but I'm already turned off that the game just informed me that I don't need to use the EXAMINE command and instead, I can just type the object that I want to interact with.
So if 77 Verbs was a tutorial into entering commands into a parser game, The Prongleman Job works to dismantle all that. I mean, what would have been the harm in letting me rely on my decades of playing parser IF and using EXAMINE and other verbs? Why does DiBianca feel the need to "be different"?
Anyway, I'm still sallying forth with an open mind. I just wanted to get that off my chest. I'm not trying to sound like a useless, ass-ugly, pompous, unfunny, overly-critical, twelve-sandwich-eating, grammar-Nazi virgin like Patrick Brian Mooney.
I'm sorry. I tried. There's no way I can get into a game when this image illustrates my SECOND move.

Well, at least I can refrain from personal attacks against the author like Patrick Brian Mooney would have enjoyed doing. It might be an entertaining enough game, but it reminds me too much of Don't Shit Your Pants. Prongleman also, immediately, breaks an unwritten (yet ubiquitous) cardinal rule of writing interactive fiction. That is, the player shouldn't have to lose in order to learn how to win. 
It's good to break the mold at times but one needs to understand the mold first. Prongleman might be a lot of fun for bumptious, low I.Q. players like Sam and Jacqueline Ashwell, but for mature players, it would be a brief diversion at best.
And I should explain that I don't necessarily insist that DiBianca made a make-shift parser to create this game. It certainly could easily have been done with anything. I'm just complaining that it didn't deliver what I wanted in a parser game by handicapping my expectation of a standard parser game. 

Monday, April 6, 2020

Spring Thing 2020 - "77 Verbs" by Mathbrush

77 Verbs by the prolific "Mathbrush" is a cute and competently coded work of IF. It was seemingly designed as a tutorial of parser IF, allowing the player to learn about the many verbs used, as well as how to phrase them properly. It also does a great job illustrating how some commands can be worded numerous ways. I played it on Twitch for about thirty minutes. I got bored once I saw the gimmick but it's not meant for seasoned parser enthusiasts. So I wouldn't ding it for that. But it does belong squarely in a category of Tutorial Games. However, it is an effective one, for sure, and unlike tutorial games by the likes of Plotkin, this one has a modicum of humor. There's not much more to say about a game like this, but I would definitely suggest it for people who want to get into parser, or to show their friends to hopefully get them into it as well.