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August 9, 2010 7:41 PM   Subscribe

We the Giants is a flash platformer where you take the role of an adorable one-eyed rectangular creature trying to touch a star by using or simply adding to a wealth of accumulated knowledge.

You should play first, but to satisfy your curiosity, yes, the star has been gotten before.
posted by EtzHadaat (51 comments total) 7 users marked this as a favorite

 
That's... sort of dumb.

Sorry. I have no heart.
posted by sonic meat machine at 8:01 PM on August 9, 2010


my sacrifice comment was "art games are kinda retarded". I have no heart either.
posted by luvcraft at 8:03 PM on August 9, 2010


Is this an actual game or one of those things some artiste made in Flash to "challenge our preconceptions of what a game is"? I ask because the former usually have some kind of controls wherein the user affects what is on the screen. Lacking evidence of either that or instructions, I suspect I am getting burned once again by the latter, as clicking about changes nothing. Just some blinking iPods and a loop of music. I've reloaded a few times, tried it in two browsers, clicked madly, did the keyboard mash, waited several minutes, to no avail.

I'm thinking a little more playtesting and some instructions are in order.

Between Capital A Art and the click-on-every-pixel style, I have lost any faith I may have once had in online games as being anything but a trick of dubious future enlightenment. Filed under, "If there is some way to play this, I no longer care; do not waste your time."
posted by adipocere at 8:04 PM on August 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


adipocere, I have two words for you: "arrow keys".
posted by luvcraft at 8:05 PM on August 9, 2010


Arrow keys move you around. Sadly that brief moment of excitement was not to be topped by anything subsequent.
posted by Babblesort at 8:06 PM on August 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


my sacrifice comment was "art games are kinda retarded". I have no heart either.

luvcraft: I saw that in the twitter stream and thought to myself, "That's exactly the kind of asshole comment luvcraft would make."
posted by signalnine at 8:08 PM on August 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


Oh I get it...it's like massively multiplayer Socialism.
posted by Cat Pie Hurts at 8:09 PM on August 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


Cat Pie Hurts, I'll have to play again and see if it throws me in the gulag for teaching it genetics.
posted by mccarty.tim at 8:11 PM on August 9, 2010


Yeah, I hit those, too. Nothin'. I'm not inclined to try again, though. I'm sure I'd just run into some other portion of the game where the lack of instruction would become painfully obvious.

Art games seem to be more about the idea that, after some spectacular feats of boredom endurance, I'll be primed to experience whatever ham-fisted "point" at the end as being revelatory, like starving your acolytes until they are ready to receive your wisdom, which they suck down, along with whatever hot gruel you've got ready.

Meet me halfway, art games. Just some instructions. It's not a lot to ask.
posted by adipocere at 8:11 PM on August 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


Everyone who is making a game should ask themselves: "After a player has experienced my game, will he then regret that he spent the time playing it instead of playing Dungeon Crawl Stone Soup?"
posted by sonic meat machine at 8:12 PM on August 9, 2010 [2 favorites]


Man, we better get something good when they reach the star for our time. And by something good, I mean cash.
posted by mccarty.tim at 8:13 PM on August 9, 2010


I can't sacrifice myself. DAMN YOU GAME
posted by boo_radley at 8:16 PM on August 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


my message would have been "drink your ovaltine".
posted by boo_radley at 8:19 PM on August 9, 2010


It seems the idiotic sacrifices of others have blocked my ability to sacrifice myself usefully. I'm stuck in a corner and can't do anything or go anywhere. I don't think the game was intended to work this way, but I find it a rather salient commentary on life.
posted by brenton at 8:20 PM on August 9, 2010 [11 favorites]


I'd like a flash game where you run a warehouse complex for mad scientists and have to reach a steady balance between getting happy clients (meaning they have productive experiments thanks to your facility) and not having them end the world (and thus your business).

It's an art game because realize that those scientists are like the people while the landlord is like God. Deep, no?
posted by mccarty.tim at 8:22 PM on August 9, 2010 [4 favorites]


Haha mccarty.tim that's a good idea.
posted by Dr. Send at 8:26 PM on August 9, 2010


Yeah, I can't sacrifice myself. I'm not even good enough to kill myself for others.

How depressing is that statement.
posted by SNWidget at 8:27 PM on August 9, 2010


I couldn't sacrifice for some reason, but mine would have been "Religion is merely the reflexive response of sentience to the sad reality of impermanence."
posted by The Confessor at 8:28 PM on August 9, 2010


Wow. I really hate this game. And I love games. But I really hate this game. Like I hate Hitler.
posted by CarlRossi at 8:35 PM on August 9, 2010


Every MetaFilter comment causes the thread to bore deeper into the Earth. It is by this mechanism all the atheists on this site enter Hell.
posted by mccarty.tim at 8:35 PM on August 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


I don't like it.
posted by ashbury at 8:39 PM on August 9, 2010


BUGGY SACK OF FUCK
posted by Spacelegoman at 8:48 PM on August 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


Did clicking the sacrifice button do nothing for anyone else?

Maybe it's a browser thing...I was using Chrome. Time to retry it on Firefox.
posted by KChasm at 8:57 PM on August 9, 2010 [3 favorites]


It won't let me sacrifice myself.

Good.
posted by darkstar at 8:57 PM on August 9, 2010 [3 favorites]


And it doesn't work on Firefox either.

Combine that with the total lack of instructions in the beginning, the same looping melody with the same staticky bit each time, and having to watch that dude type out his useful advice at the speed of slug, and you've got a real boner of an art game.

...I like art games. But I didn't like this.
posted by KChasm at 9:03 PM on August 9, 2010


I was all set to be all deep and say "TRANSFOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOORM" like the Lumas in Super Mario Galaxy 1 and 2, but, like everyone else, I can't sacrifice myself. Sigh.
posted by Lucinda at 9:04 PM on August 9, 2010


Interesting concept, execution simultaneously boring and creepy. I felt like my poor little rectangle was being brainwashed into a suicide cult.
posted by bettafish at 9:05 PM on August 9, 2010 [3 favorites]


It *is* true, though. You only need baking soda and vinegar for most stuff.
posted by Made of Star Stuff at 9:13 PM on August 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


So knowing that I can't move forward or do anything of use, I steel myself to commit suicide, write my note of wisdom, click "sacrifice"... and nothing happens? Jesus that's a depressing bug. :|
posted by Solon and Thanks at 9:17 PM on August 9, 2010 [3 favorites]


apparently you can't sacrifice yourself if you're sufficiently close to the spawn point.

The griefers know this, and intentionally plug up the section right near it.

so this little meditation on self sacrifice in fact demonstrates that assholes win due to their greater dedication to being assholes.

I'd call it the GoonSwarm effect.
posted by leotrotsky at 9:25 PM on August 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


The griefers make it much more life-like, in fact.
posted by darkstar at 9:27 PM on August 9, 2010


Jesus that's a depressing bug

It would be better if instead of the button just not working, a team of anti-suicide cult deprogrammers abducted your rectangle guy and convinced him that vinegar and baking soda, while useful, cannot replace all household cleaning products.
posted by burnmp3s at 9:34 PM on August 9, 2010 [6 favorites]


so this little meditation on self sacrifice in fact demonstrates that assholes win due to their greater dedication to being assholes.

Now that's art.
posted by nanojath at 9:43 PM on August 9, 2010


Sort of surprised by the level of hate though. It's a 4-5 day student project, it wasn't that bad, though it ultimately failed in execution. People are acting like it killed their dog or something.
posted by nanojath at 9:50 PM on August 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


Thus the game wins by not being fun.
posted by klangklangston at 9:51 PM on August 9, 2010


Played this right when the post went up, meant to leave a nice little comment at the time but got distracted. Surprised to see so much negative response to it. The moment when I realized I wasn't being set up for a smallish platformer but for a quick and self-directed "death" was interesting; it was with a certain amount of satisfaction that I wedged myself into the best missing-step bit of a growing cliff so the next player could work from that.

I'm sure I'd just run into some other portion of the game where the lack of instruction would become painfully obvious.

Aside from the ensuing grief-driven sacrifice bug, there's really not a whole lot to be confused about. Genuinely sucks that your arrow keys didn't work (possible input focus issue from prior click/mash fest? Flash in a browser is dumb that way), but you're condemning a game you didn't play for an experience you didn't have.

So knowing that I can't move forward or do anything of use, I steel myself to commit suicide, write my note of wisdom, click "sacrifice"... and nothing happens? Jesus that's a depressing bug. :|

That's accidentally nicely existential, really. Which is not to say that griefers shouldn't go suck a fuck, but at least they managed to induce something slightly philosophically interesting (if mostly just frustrating) despite themselves.
posted by cortex at 10:26 PM on August 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


Oh, Internet. Do you ever run out of hate?




No. No you do not.
posted by Scattercat at 10:53 PM on August 9, 2010


There was one actual thing that players could "do" in this game - sacrificing themselves. And the game is a complete failure in getting that functionality right.

Reminds me of a book though. I think it was Nick Hornby's "A long way down".
posted by vidur at 11:45 PM on August 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


I tried making an art game once. Turns out it makes game making easier if you see it as a craft rather than an art.

Id love to play this, but my computer is packed up for quakecon.

I cannot sleep, either.
posted by hellojed at 11:51 PM on August 9, 2010


The only winning move is not to play.
posted by _Lasar at 1:42 AM on August 10, 2010 [2 favorites]


Huh, I had basically this exact idea last night, though with a slightly different execution. This is helpful in that it's made clear a couple of potential stumbling blocks.

There are a few games out today that are doing something a bit more interesting with this kind of asynchronous massively(ish)-multiplayer interaction. I think we'll probably see a lot more of it as it becomes more common for people, especially on consoles, to be permanently connected to the system's network. Just background things like the grass in RPGs being worn down into paths where people walk a lot, or cross-pollination of character designs to help bulk up secondary content.
posted by lucidium at 3:34 AM on August 10, 2010


I get what you're saying, cortex, but art games have burned me so many times now that my "okay, I'm going to go do something else" threshold has dropped considerably, as the payoff for trying to play art games just keeps getting lower and lower. The moment something looks like an art game, I just begin to suspect that I'll spend some time in a game that forces me to wait five minutes for anything to occur, only to get some "ha ha, you are a fool for trying" at the end. Like getting lemonpartied, only someone is wearing a beret after the chain of URL redirects ends. Fool me once, etc.

The whole "... and there are no instructions, just like life" thing has become cliche. Or the game ends and blah blah, you have chosen to spend your only life this way.

"Art" needs to be the adjective applied to "game." If the game isn't playable or interested in getting me to play it, chances are that the "art" aspect of it is going to be just as bad.
posted by adipocere at 5:37 AM on August 10, 2010


Couldn't get past the first "sacrifice."

My patience for figuring out games has really shrunk in the last 10 years or so. Yeah, I gave it all of 30s, so I get what I deserve.

Neat idea, needs polish.
posted by clvrmnky at 7:03 AM on August 10, 2010


I played it. Kind of rubbish in terms of gameplay (run, jump, die) and code, he probably should have made the spawn point variable, or clipping through dead bodies allowing you to jump on them as individual platforms rather than a huge pile.

Also would be nice to see what messages were left by each "body"

And finally, this game needs a flamethrower. all games need a flamethrower.
posted by hellojed at 7:14 AM on August 10, 2010 [1 favorite]


At first, I thought the tide of vitriol was a little high on this one, but I think I may have to swim over to This is Stupid island as well. Won't accept my sacrifice... And what good is sacrificing your 'knowledge' if others can't review it? (Don't attribute to malice what can easily be attributed to stupidity- both salient and trite.)
posted by LD Feral at 7:27 AM on August 10, 2010 [1 favorite]


If you haven't gotten to the fridge levelling up, then you haven't gotten very far.
posted by boo_radley at 9:33 AM on August 10, 2010


According to the twitter feed, the last time this game worked was about 5 hours ago.

Might explain people's frustration with it?
posted by joshwa at 10:26 AM on August 10, 2010


I kind of like it, but it could be slightly more gamey.
posted by maus at 10:06 PM on August 10, 2010


It works again, for anyone that actually wanted to kill themselves.
posted by SNWidget at 9:06 PM on August 16, 2010


Oh thank god, closure. Added myself to the Impossible Leaning Tower of Giants on the left.
posted by lucidium at 6:52 AM on August 17, 2010


tried to 'play' this again. fucking griefers.
posted by maus at 2:36 PM on August 18, 2010


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