Friday, March 14, 2008

On The Web: Zero Punctuation

I’ve alluded to this cryptically in the past and will allude to it cryptically in the future, but I now have a job in the video game industry. I landed this position in spite of and to some degree because of the fact that my experience with video games is, shall we say, limited. In related news, I am now also a heart surgeon, a test pilot, and Leonardo da Vinci.

Henry David Thoreau warned to beware of all enterprises that require new clothes. He didn’t say anything about new cultural references. In my video game life, I’ve had to abandon much of my usual shtick. My boundless repertoire of Henry David Thoreau quotes, for instance, cuts no ice. Whereas repeated viewings of The Big Lebowski, Super Troopers and Arrested Development have served me in good stead.

Cultural exchanges are a two-way street. There are landmarks I discover in that world and wish to share. Such as the work of my new hero, Ben “Yahtzee” Croshaw.

Yahtzee is responsible for Zero Punctuation, a feature at The Escapist magazine. His short animated reviews of video games are breathless, profane, and insulting. They are also damn near perfect, the ideal blend of form and content. Even the song choices work. Most web videos, no matter how brief, are truly dire. Not so Zero Punctuation. After being introduced to one, I scarfed the rest of them down like a box of Raisinettes, which as always left me feeling hyper, vaguely nauseated, and annoyed that I reached the bottom so quickly. I can’t believe I have to wait until Wednesday for a new one.

I’ll start you out with Yahtzee’s take on Devil May Cry 4. It’s NSFW. But what the hell, right? It’s Friday.