147: My Friends are Funnier Than Your Writers

My Friends are Funnier Than Your Writers

"In a multiplayer deathmatch of Half-Life 2, all hostilities spontaneously ceased as we all grasped the wondrous possibilities of the gravity gun. Thoughts about where to find the best sniper position or the quickest route to the assault rifle spawn vanished from our heads, replaced with one shining thought: Could we get a wrecked car up the stairwell and onto the roof? The answer was a resounding 'no,' but we managed to get it up two flights of stairs and only crushed four people in the process."

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Yeah, I've done the pinball/invincibiltiy combo in Carmageddon before. Picked up a nitro with them both on in one of the underground tracks. Car was so deformed at the end that it actualy spread across the whole tunnel.

Friends and I would play the Grand Theft Auto games for hours and hours and hours without ever doing anything the game asked us to do. Seeing who could last the longest at 6 stars made for some especially hilarious scenarios.

One of our favourite things to do, though, was to park a car at the top of a ramp. Then grab a motorcycle and launch off the ramp. Hitting the car at the top would send the motorbike into the most ridiculous spins and rolls, and we could do it for hours straight giggling every single time.

Everyone calls GTA a sandbox game, but I wonder how well a game would do that was literally just a sandbox. No plot. No characters. No missions. Just a massive arena filled with as many comedic elements as possible.

The first time I was playing GTA, I didn't know squat about English, I didn't understand what the game wanted from me, and that resulted in some very comdedic episodes. Soon I realised that following the arrow was the key, but just following the stupid yellow arrow around wasn't that fun. Later we figured out the game had multiplayer, and I started playin with friends. The first thing we did was the most fun of them all. When the game came out, having a huge map with lots of cars and unbelievable ammount of choices left us astonished. We wanted to know just how many cars the game had on the map (thinking about how awesomely large the maps were). We started a multiplayer on the San Andreas map, and started to hoard all the vehicles into the huge parking lot, snatching the parking cars, beating people out of their moving rides and even stealing all the tanks, FBI and police cars we could manage, all while accidentally splattering each other while trying to park them in a straight line, and running from cops. Soon we realised that the game had only so many cars to even fill that single parking lot 3/4 full, and discovered some very interesting facts about how they made made the game to look like it had millions of cars. It wasn't just interesting and educating, but was lots of fun too.

I think the intentional humour and the unintentional humour is equally important in a game. While some games follow strict storylines and occasionally force some half-witted humour on the player is not all that fun, compared to the serious game with lotsa possibilities, like StarCraft. When you start a multiplayer game with your 5 friends, beat the enemy into stupor, and start arranging different colored zerglings into art pieces, THEN you'll know you are having fun the most unintended way possible :).

Games like Halo 3 and Rainbow Six: Vegas were actually worth playing when played cooperatively with three of my friends. We were organized and effective; the kind of killing machine a group of German engineers and Swiss clockmakers might construct.

However, our gaming sessions would inevitably evolve, or perhaps devolve, into complete madness, leaving us all roaring with laughter. I actually had tears in my eyes on a few occasions and my sides would ache from laughing.

We would shoot each other in the foot or miss only slightly and then pretend that an enemy had actually been the culprit. We would throw flashbangs to disorient each other on crucial moments. In Halo 3 we would often fight over what vehicles to use, who would drive and who would be the gunner. We would even try to sabotage or destroy vehicles we didn't want others to use. This never prevented the game from proceeding and we very rarely actually killed each other in a game.

A thing is rarely funny after the first or second time and games become too familiar very quickly. It is best to just leave a certain phase behind at an early stage, so that the thing does not get old or sour.

John Evans:
My Friends are Funnier Than Your Writers

"In a multiplayer deathmatch of Half-Life 2, all hostilities spontaneously ceased as we all grasped the wondrous possibilities of the gravity gun. Thoughts about where to find the best sniper position or the quickest route to the assault rifle spawn vanished from our heads, replaced with one shining thought: Could we get a wrecked car up the stairwell and onto the roof? The answer was a resounding 'no,' but we managed to get it up two flights of stairs and only crushed four people in the process."

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Actually you can get the cars onto the roof.

 

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