Hello and welcome to the inaugural release of Steam Redlight! Will you aide me on this journey to expose every representation of gaming that’s worse than old people and mainstream media? I sure hope so! Now, for those of you who are too busy getting laid, Steam is a market platform on PC that boasts more games than there are cannabis strains and just like marijuana you can spend twenty dollars for thirty minutes of fun and several weeks wishing you had twenty more dollars.
But Steam is very much unlike the illegal drug trade because criminals have standards, and when those standards aren't met, people die. What I’m talking about, of course, is Steam Greenlight. Times were good, back when Greenlight was a place of comfort, fresh ideas, and relief from bankruptcy due to funding kickstarter campaigns, but then someone told the eleven year olds about Greenlight and nobody was prepared for what was to happen next.
The only explanation is that an evil umbrella corporation (I'm looking at you, Disney) has handed out copies of Unity3D and MS Paint to Youtube commenters and told them that if they didn't each make one game a week then Call of Duty wouldn't be released next year. So a thousand tiny voices screeched through a thousand potato headsets, and with a flurry of bloody mouse clicks we have a pile of software more useless than John Travolta’s sex drive. Unfortunately neither will stop coming.
So, I welcome you to dust off your torches and paladin keyboards(+4) because we’re out for revenge and no one is safe.
I present to you:
Now you may be asking “How are you separating the evil Redlights from the Greenlights?” Well, gentle stranger, I carry with me a divine power: the Redlight Seal of Approval.
It works just like the US Congress in the sense that it's generally pointless and needlessly confusing. If I approve something by putting the seal on it, then that something is hilariously in need of reappraisal and should probably not be on anyone’s computers for fear of losing massive amount of data and free time. But we march on, no matter how many pixellated dick simulators, pre-made zombie assets, or shiny asshole gimmicks we might have to label 'Redlit'.
Tonight’s lineup starts us us off with:
That pun's no joke either
I always knew that stars were a snowman's worst enemy, but the trailer eloquently shows us that a vicious cycle is running deep under this game's surface. You see, the player - who appears to be a pancake cosplaying as a small child - uses snow to pummel the snowmen and their comrades back into the gingerbread houses whence they came before they destroy the eponymous star. It’s mysterious and devoid of logic, but then who is a gamer to question logic?
Let’s just shut our brains off for the duration of this entry and maybe we’ll find something deeper.
An evil witch wants to trap you through wishes. Understandable, I bait children with wishes too! Of course what I don't do is get them to write for me, and it certainly is amazing How many words Can be randomly capitalized Without being proper Nouns. I never knew it could be so much fun.
But even more amazing is how much I don’t want this game sold to me. If you were trying to find investors for a game like this, the only way you could get it past them is wait for their brains to liquefy halfway through the slideshow presentation and seep out through their strained eyes squinting with rage and fear. I'm convinced a bag of spiders made this, but let’s not be too harsh. Spiders are excellent at scaring me away from things and this came damned close to putting me off computers. Despite the communication barrier, at least they can get the point across despite a couple misplaced singular
The page offers tips on staying alive longer during endless mode, but do I really want to stay alive? It’s hellish nightmares like this that make me wish I was dead, and even if I had returned home after fighting off my enemies with their unborn children to protect the star that brought me there in the first place, it would only be a matter of time before everyone started making bets on how many days until I went and buried myself alive.
Shucks! I'm just glad the witch isn't always around to defend the place from accidental wishes, but who elected us to be the saviour of the Star? I'm going out on a limb and suggesting that we probably won’t get exposition anywhere outside the store page, but that’s fine. This game is about ultra fast FPS and super strategic tower placement and doesn't have time to give you story! In the trailer they give you a mysterious piece of advice and then jump right into the action. Hell, you can even get on the leader board if you’re MLG enough!
The only true glory is the glory that comes in the form of their leader board. Of course I don’t think it will be much of a challenge to mount when the only other people up there are the developer and Jesus.
There is some great news underneath all this speculation though. They boast a five-feature breakdown which is fantastic for a Greenlight game. That’s four more than most shooters, and five more than most Greenlight games, however, I don’t think saying “Most of our Artwork & Audio is developed in-house” qualifies as a selling point. First off I doubt that Mom and Dad's corpses have been dead long enough for you to legally own their house, but more importantly there is merit to finding artists and sound designers. You know what they give you when you open up Blender? A cube. They literally give you a cube to use because 85% of their user base can’t figure out the control scheme to make their own models and the other 15% are lying. This game is a geometric nightmare with monochrome enemies and layout fit for giving your enemies depression. If you can’t hire a sound designer or artist, and kidnapping is out of the question, at least take the time to hone your talents. They don’t even display the audio in the trailer which only leads me to believe that it’s audio from whatever porn tab happened to be open at the moment, playing on repeat, so the player can actually give a fuck, but the part that bothers me the most, above all others, is this special present…
Wow! Old school! I get it, do you? A school for old people. You see I doubt many folks in this audience have arthritis due to the fact that half of you are already down there destroying the comment thread with flaming fingers of justice, but when an old person can’t type any more, or knit, or even fire guns at hipsters, they are typically put inside rooms with really small doorknobs and forgotten about. Well now you can put the fun back in their life! This game is so paltry they probably won’t even have to push keys to play it. You could set them back, turn up the nitrous on their breathing tube, and tell them the Nazi’s are coming for Jesus’s star because that’s what it damn well looks like. The gameplay might be slower than Stephen Hawking at a rap battle, but I’ll be damned if it doesn't look like a bullet train to grandma!
I was serious earlier when I said they offered “advice” on wishes. I wish I could forget about this game. Maybe there’s a Star of Destiny above me right now that will take me into a world where this game doesn't exist. Maybe I should just drink harder.
But not 'powefull' enough to spell powerful
Well folks, I don’t know about you, but this game gets my RSoA!
Take a moment to open the windows and take off your clothes because this next one’s going to get a little heated.
Did you watch the video? Because I sure didn't. If I wanted to watch people click on stupid shit for eight minutes I'd sign up as a QA for Buzzfeed. At least the last game had gameplay, and the nice thing about video games is that it’s hard to get confused as a developer over what product you’re creating. What you’re supposed to sell is literally in the title, such as GAMEplay, video GAMES, and GAME trailer. As far as I can tell, the trailer is the opening cutscene and then eight minutes of nothing. Every click is greeted by a “harumph” or “uh-uh” from the only assets Zynga hasn't whored out (and quite a few I’m sure they have), even though the developer is 100% sure that there are “Lots of buildings and units to interact with”.
Were they so feverishly hellbent on getting in my pants that they forget the gameplay portion? Anything that looks like a mobile freemium game is trying to fuck you and get your wallet, but they should seriously consider paying whoever manages to keep this installed for more than 15 minutes because I think the video was legitimately an entire playthrough.
I’ll be honest, the most time I spent on one of these was waiting 24 hours for the day cycle on a freemium once, and that was a decade ago when MySpace existed. Somehow people keep paying these developers for the same thing Fox News exists for: to win pretend games they made up and to make you look like an asshole to your friend. If the developers really wanted to make money they would probably have a higher return rate on selling their organs to a back alley surgeon and the organs would actually be of use to someone.
For instance, why not sell their hands to minefield workers? You’ll see below that they somehow failed at typing anything longer than most obituaries or Tweets for that matter, but from what I see there are only two possibilities:
1. Writing isn't their first language and thus they should return to the mothership before trying to take all our money
2. They spent so much time freaking out over the possibility that a Z axis exists that they forgot to write a complete description.
Fucking exciting, dude
I'm not kidding, and that’s not cropped. It’s almost as if halfway through writing they heard sirens and had to pack up their illegal torrent hotspot and burn the servers before the KGB kicked the door down. And if you start calling me out for insinuating they still live in the USSR, let me remind you they still think Americans live in the gold rush era. Who says the Alaskan prospecting era has passed? I fucking do, and if you even think about rushing for my gold I won’t hesitate to turn that weaponized facial hair against you.
This game definitely gets my RSoA.
Well the article is coming to a close, but this final entry is an especially unique one.
Another zombie game!
How do they know where I live?
Remnant Z proves to show us how many iterations of the zombie genre we can get, and how far the English language will stretch when putting words in front of the letter Z. Listen to me, I sound like a wounded chicken cursing at McDonalds for not using rea-
Wait a minute… I see something…
Please tell me McDonald’s didn’t have a hand in this. Those are French fries. Why have a hunger bar when there are literal French fries growing out the ground? Beats me; let’s see some zombies.
Huh, I guess I expected more from a game about zombies. They don’t look very hostile, and the player doesn't seem very perturbed. It looks like they broke into someone’s house to host a karaoke tournament, unless that’s a flashlight. I'm no doctor, but even I can tell that both of the people in that house should be heading to the hospital because one has leprosy and the other clearly broke his wrist trying to write code.
Let’s not forget that the trees look like legos, the buildings are there, and the ground has less variation than Barbra Streisand in a crash of rhinos.
It's historically accurate that a lot of things look like shit but perform very well. Take Kimbo Slice for instance. He looks like pubes growing out of a brick and hits just as hard.
If bricks had gold teeth
However, this game is like an amateur engineer trying to convert a blender into a sex toy. If it offered any pleasure while destroying your dick I'm sure that engineer would be just as surprised with his sexblender as this developer is with his own game.
Oh, you found your own game to be quite enjoyable to play? What were your other options? I mean I can understand hearing it from EA, but if you aren't 100% sure your game is fun to play, maybe you should spend less time QA testing it and more making textures that have more hues than drywall. Or even work on gameplay that helps us forget why strokes happen.
By saying it's similar to others in the genre only “a little more fun” I can only imagine they have the same entertainment analysis capabilities as a five year old. This game doesn't portray anything as scary, looks like food, and is only considered fun because everything is interesting when you’re five. I sure hope that when he says "less expensive" he means "free" because the most fun I had even looking at these screenshots was clicking the “No thanks” button. It doesn't help my argument that this will probably get greenlit in a week or two, at least I can say I tried to stop the zombie apocalypse.
This plague rat gets my RSoA
So here we come to a close! Phew, that was quite a journey, and I honestly saw some spooky shit I wouldn't normally see, but thoroughly enjoyed it while it lasted. I can safely wipe the sweat off my brow, delete my browsing history, and go take a shower to cleanse myself from this nonsense.
Tune in next time for more Redlight Propaganda Extravaganza!
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• Is Incivility Necessary?
• Should the relief on Stone Mountain be destroyed?