- What awesome race can I play? (Horns/tails preferred.)
- What awesome clothes can my PC wear to look awesome at all times?
- Who are my love interests and what tragic story can I console them through?
- Combat, I guess.
Here’s a question for you: is cheating in games (specifically, using third-party cheat programs that alter the game in -memory) copyright infringement?
This is, I think, what one would call a “novel” approach to combating cheating in a online game. I’m also kind of reminded of the fandom C&D days (specifically, the Harry Potter wars) of the early 2000s.
And while it’s kinda lulz to watch some 1337 h4xx0r kid get, quite literally, served in Fortnight, if the legal argument holds up (i.e. that using trainers is copyright infringement), then places that deal in single player game cheats are also at risk and, shit. That basically means I will never play a video game ever again.1
The most realistic flight simulator, coming soon to a VR headset near you!
Video games are both an artform and a cultural artifact, which means there are various libraries out there that preserve them. So, yes. It really is someone’s job out there to collect every single game for the Fairchild Channel F and ensure they stay playable. So far so good.
Except… fast forward twenty-plus years, to the advent of online gaming. Of the sort that runs on proprietary tech held on private servers run by the game publisher. Who then shuts them down. And in this world of overreaching copyright (cough DMCA cough)… how do you preserve that? And, more importantly, as a third party, should you have a right to?
Aah my beautiful pastel danger noodle I loves him so much. 💜
So when I was a kid, I remember really, really wanting a particular videogame, solely based on the box art. Dad, the big meanie,1 would not buy it for me.
Fast forward twenty-something years. For whatever reason, I was suddenly reminded once again of this forgotten game, and swore to track it down. Only problem? I barely remembered anything about it. I remembered I thought the art was cool, and that it was kind of that Beetlejuice-cartoonish horror-but-comedy sort of style. I remembered the title maybe had a number in it. I went scouring places like GOG looking for my Lost Game, but to no avail. People on Twitter try and help, to no avail. Eventually, I give up.
Fast forward twelve days (according to the Mastodon timestamps), where I’m watching old hbomberguy vids to procrastinate writing the final scene of the dragon book. I come across this video, talking about Dragon’s Lair—a game many people had tried to helpfully suggest as being my Forgotten Game—when…
… when he just…
… he just. Says the name. Of the game I’ve been looking for. For twenty years. And I know, just from the name, Brain Dead 13, that it’s The Game. The Forgotten Game. And so I eugooglize it, and there’s a pic of the goddamn box and… and I remember it. It’s The Forgotten Game! It’s here! It’s real! It even has a freakin’ iOS port that I can’t even freakin’ buy because it’s not available in the Australian iOS store because auuurrrghhh!
But you know what I can do? Oh, I can find a Let’s Play of this terrible, forgotten old game on YouTube. Because the internet never forgets, no matter how obscure the thing.
So here it is. The game my teenage self obsessed over. Hell, I even remember now I had a character at the time called Fritz, because I thought it was a cool name, although if I recall correctly he was more a The Maxx rip-off than related to his namesake in Brain Dead 13. But… whatever. I found it! I found the game!
Also, unnerving in retrospect: how similar the protagonist of this game is to what my husband looked like when I first met him (long red hair, worked with computers) which… is probably something best not thought about too much, y’know?