Serious Suck

QUICK, GET THE COACH GUN! The gaming world has been abuzz as of late with the impending release of one of the last year's most hotly anticipated action games. No, not World War II: Normandy, the bargain-basement ValuSoft game created by ex-Daikatana team members in approximately 0.4% of the time. No, not the latest Playstation game where scantily clad women have lesbian sex briefly interrupted by killing monsters. Not even the eighteenth Half-Life compilation which includes another mod with some submachine guns.

I am of course referring to Serious Sam, which has been the subject of rave reviews from the media, with PC Gamer calling it "the Doom killer" and Computer Games Monthly saying it's "the best first-person shooter made entirely by Croatians." With such critical acclaim from the two released demos, could the Croatian masterminds behind our beloved alliterative protagonist possibly go wrong? The answer, of course, is yes.

Before an angry mob armed with torches and two-by-fours hunts me down and hangs me by my testicles from the nearest church steeple, let me quantify that statement: I used to like Serious Sam. Like most people I was enthralled with the bright textures and the pretty lights and the mile-long levels. It was a break from the standard fare of gloomy passages and dank caverns that the FPS genre had all but disintegrated into. But then I made my fatal mistake: I tried to play it multiplayer.

During one of my visits to Lowtax's plush Malibu estate, between downing White Russians and gold laced hors d'oeuvres, Rich mentioned that he had downloaded the latest Serious Sam test and wanted to try out the newly implemented co-op mode. Following is a timeline of events from the session:

10:46 PM -- Andrew joins the game
10:47 PM -- Lowtax joins the game
10:48 PM -- Andrew discovers that the knife does approximately 10000000000 damage per slice to other players
11:02 PM -- Lowtax and Andrew grow tired of gibbing each other with knives
11:03 PM -- Headless guys teleport into the giant room
11:04 PM -- Screaming headless guys teleport into the giant room
11:05 PM -- More headless guys teleport into the giant room
11:06 PM -- Lowtax finds the "Coach Gun"
11:09 PM -- Pillowcases with teeth teleport into the giant room
11:12 PM -- Larger pillowcases with teeth teleport into the giant room
11:18 PM -- Flying pillowcases with teeth float into the giant room
11:37 PM -- Bird-women teleport into the giant room
11:43 PM -- More bird-women teleport into the giant room
11:47 PM -- Everything teleports into the giant room
11:54 PM -- More of everything teleports into the giant room
12:04 AM -- Andrew's eyes melt
12:05 AM -- Lowtax's head explodes

With such varied action and nail-biting suspense, it's no wonder GOD Games jumped at the chance to publish Serious Sam! Of course, GOD Games also jumps at the chance to hire leather-clad midgets and project 50-foot displays of lesbian makeout sessions, so their credibility might be questioned.

Wrestling With Emotions

Something Awful's biweekly love and advice column, Backyard Love, has been updated with a brand-new selection of letters from from those in need of romantic counseling. What will this edition bring for the masters of the Crossover Spinal Suplex? Here's a tidbit:

Dear Backyard Love:

My wife, the love of my life, is driving me nuts. She wants an open marriage, and I'm just not into that. She married me when she was very young, before she had much of a chance to explore, but I'm done with exploring. I know how confusing it can be. I've already decided that if I agree, I'm not going on dates myself. The problem is that I'm afraid I'll lose her no matter what I do. I feel really confused. I did not think marriage was going to be like this.

Signed,
Nuts in Nantucket

EL TERROR DE FUEGO: WHO ARE YOU? LADY MARITIA? WHY DID YOU WANT TO MERRY ME WHEN I DID NOT ASK? THE BELLY IT SWELLS BUT A BABY OF DEMON TERROR INSIDE IS NOT MAKE SENSE BECAUSE MY FIRE INSIDE! IT WOULD BURN IN MY SEED AS WELL! YOUR BELLY IT BURNS!! IT BURNS!! I WILL RUN TO HOME AND FIND A BUCKET OF THE WATER AND WHO AM I SAVING? I MUST RUN TO FIND THE HELP BUT FOR WHO IT IS NOT IN MY CURRENT PLANS BECAUSE YOUR WIFE, YOUR LOVE OF LIFE, I DRIVE MY NUTS INTO HER AS OPEN MARRIAGE IS FORCED BETWEEN THE THIEGHS! BUT I MUST RUN BECAUSE THE FIRE WILL BURN IN HER TOO AND NOW I REMEMBER WHY I HAVE THE WATER BUCKET!

The Revolutionary Scarecrow demands you go read or risk multiple puncture wounds from his mighty pitchfork of revolution.

– Rich "Lowtax" Kyanka (@lowtax)

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