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"It usually sounds ridiculous when opponents to video game describe them as murder simulators..."
August 26, 2010 7:53 PM   Subscribe

"Serial Killer Roguelike" is exactly what it sounds like. Here's a video of it in action. posted by codacorolla (46 comments total) 20 users marked this as a favorite

 
Awesome. Someone looked at Dwarf Fortress and decided to make something even MORE twisted.
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 7:58 PM on August 26, 2010 [3 favorites]


Man, but the mods just recorded the Metafilter podcast yesterday. Did Cortex know about this?
posted by These Premises Are Alarmed at 7:59 PM on August 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


This will be ... useful.
posted by kafziel at 8:04 PM on August 26, 2010


Well, it's not actually released yet, right? He says it'll be at least a month or two before he can even put a demo out for people to try.
posted by Gator at 8:04 PM on August 26, 2010


Gator: yes. In the linked articles, it mentions that he enventually invisions it as a large, city level crime simulation game (including other types of murder, like hit jobs, instead of just psychopathy).
posted by codacorolla at 8:06 PM on August 26, 2010


I'm Lawful neutral...cant be sneaking and killing just to kill.

the video has MIDI written all over it
posted by clavdivs at 8:10 PM on August 26, 2010


I recently bit someone and his entire body basically exploded into individual pieces.

I know that feeling.
posted by kenko at 8:34 PM on August 26, 2010


Beevs
2 days ago
I hope you can eat parts of the bodies and have the option to skeet on the corpses.

SKRoguelike
@Beevs - I'm going to add cannibalism over the next week or so. I'll add another video once that and a couple of other new additions are in there.


So I think its safe to assume EA isn't involved in the development?
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 8:37 PM on August 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


Isn't a normal rogue-like already a serial killer game?
posted by empath at 8:43 PM on August 26, 2010 [15 favorites]


Sounds like the next farmville. It would be fun if you could send "trophies" to your facebook friends? (not serial killer-ist.)
posted by sebastienbailard at 8:45 PM on August 26, 2010


@Beevs - I'm going to add cannibalism over the next week or so.

Ulch - that meat was tainted! You feel deathly sick.
posted by Loser at 8:53 PM on August 26, 2010 [15 favorites]



After watching the video, I don't think that character would have been that successful at being a serial murderer as he ended up cutting himself in the attack on the victim. I'm sure the virtual CSI would have caught up with him rather quickly, especially since the cops were so efficient in the game and got there when the murder had just finished.
posted by dealing away at 8:56 PM on August 26, 2010


Isn't a normal rogue-like already a serial killer game?

That's what I was thinking when I saw the headline. After all, I killed like a hundred kobolds yesterday playing Crawl.

But after watching the video, oh my god. It definitely raises the psychopath bar for the genre.
posted by qxntpqbbbqxl at 9:10 PM on August 26, 2010


Don't forget that an earlier game from Bay 12 games (the creators of Dwarf Fortress) was Liberal Crime Squad, a game where you play a leader of a terrorist group that attempts to indoctrinate people into their liberal philosophy. It's a roguelike game too, but not quite as creepy as this.
posted by demiurge at 9:13 PM on August 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


So if you think about it, saying "@msittig" is representing the person as a little @ character and the username next to it is like a nametag pinned on that person's uniform.
posted by msittig at 9:18 PM on August 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


I want a Tom Ripley roguelike, which mostly consists of wandering around pastoral France, jaunting about in a sporty car to look at art or eat fine cheeses, with only the occasional murder thrown in.

My, that was a yummy ... Gouda.
You begin to feel greedy and you sense gold. Or a decent forgery.
You feel a strange sense of loss. Oh, that was your conscience, how sad.
posted by adipocere at 9:34 PM on August 26, 2010 [9 favorites]


As murder simulators go, I'm not sure which is more disturbing, the up-close and personal high-def graphics that modern consoles provide, or the really distant and clinical top-down view of the roguelike universe.

Lemme go down to the river, try some examples, and see which feels more accurate.

BRB.
posted by quin at 9:58 PM on August 26, 2010


"So if you think about it, saying "@msittig" is representing the person as a little @ character and the username next to it is like a nametag pinned on that person's uniform."

Yeah, but unless you are chaotic you suffer an alignment penalty of exp/3.
posted by vapidave at 10:29 PM on August 26, 2010


I just want to make it clear that I don't intend to weigh in on this.

Oh who am I kidding, give me 24 hours and I'll probably write four pages about it.
posted by JHarris at 10:31 PM on August 26, 2010 [6 favorites]


That's... vaguely disturbing in a way I wouldn't have expected.

And yes, all Roguelikes are Serial Killer Roguelikes, really, but still.

Five Ann Rules out of Five!
posted by Artw at 10:38 PM on August 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


Oh, and it needs vehicle support.

Options:
* VW with passenger seat removed.
* Creep van.
posted by Artw at 10:55 PM on August 26, 2010


The developer wrote

In its release state, you will be able to play the game any way you want. You could join an organized crime faction and take on randomly generated contracts as a hitman, join the police force and take to using excessive force against criminals or simply burglarize homes and shops and sell the items at pawn shops. The end goal is to have an open world crime simulator with gory combat mechanics.

So from what I've read, it's intended to be like Dwarf Fortress, but instead of simulating dwarves building a fortress, it simulates criminals doing criminal things.

I like the idea, and hope it does become what he says it will. It's got a lot of potential as an idea - if it pans out, it could be really, really interesting. Mafia kingpin? Vigilante cop? Robin Hood? Maybe even a terrorist cell? Who knows?

Still, as a commenter on Temple of the Roguelike noted:

On the one hand, I am very glad that a promising new project is getting so much positive attention, but on the other I am extremely weirded out that this project is getting so much positive attention.
posted by WalterMitty at 11:43 PM on August 26, 2010 [5 favorites]


I think this is one Roguelike I'll actually learn to play!
posted by cthuljew at 1:21 AM on August 27, 2010


Combine this with Oregon Trail, and you have Ravenous, the game. The soundtrack is two banjo strings.
posted by hanoixan at 2:24 AM on August 27, 2010 [4 favorites]


Five Ann Rules out of Five!

I've seen this in a couple of video gamey places. What the fuck is it?
posted by edbles at 5:35 AM on August 27, 2010


Also this is fucked up. It's also not doing enough to establish goals so I think once the shock value wears off it would get boring quickly. Or turn into like an Ender's Game thing where they just casually install it in schools and the kids who play it a lot get extra special guidance counseling.
posted by edbles at 5:42 AM on August 27, 2010


This would be a far more interesting idea if the execution wasn't so clinical. Start attaching some sort of emotional connected to the game, and the idea of RPing a serial killer becomes a lot more interesting (and disturbing).

Otherwise, its just like every other game: kill people, acquire points, avoid death.
posted by FuzzyLumpkins at 6:39 AM on August 27, 2010


I thought that serial killers ARE emotionless.

The RPG mindset really is kind of sociopathic if you apply it to the real world.
posted by empath at 6:50 AM on August 27, 2010


Sociopaths are emotionless. I somehow doubt all serial killers are sociopaths. The effective ones, probably.

I need more coffee.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 6:52 AM on August 27, 2010


Alright, so lets say that presenting the NPCs in the game as faceless, meaningless people who live in houses devoid of family, or any sort of emotionally charged objects was a design choice that mimics the main characters inability to perceive the victims as people.

We then need a way to identify with the character we're playing as. I understand the idea of roguelikes is largely to RP it yourself, but without finding a way to attach some sort of emotional connection to something in the game, the game is about as remarkable as a GTA game.
posted by FuzzyLumpkins at 7:03 AM on August 27, 2010


I understand the idea of roguelikes is largely to RP it yourself, but without finding a way to attach some sort of emotional connection to something in the game, the game is about as remarkable as a GTA game.

Actually, because this interface leaves so much to the imagination I found it to be much more disturbing than GTA. In GTA you're harming cartoons, when that little @ symbol went over and murdered Tim Grimes in brutal clinical detail I was really weirded out. Because my imagination invented a little tiny real human rather than a cartoonish robot thing that says the same three things and appears repeatedly all over an over the top cartoon landscape.
posted by edbles at 7:38 AM on August 27, 2010


Because my imagination invented a little tiny real human rather than a cartoonish robot thing that says the same three things and appears repeatedly all over an over the top cartoon landscape.

Point taken, but what happens when you're killing your 20th @ symbol, or your 50th? Do you feel that your ability to connect with simple ascii representations of people will continue to be more potent than your ability to connect with cartoon people once the novelty wears off? The @ sign had about as much personality as a character in the GTA series, or at best, an NPC in the sims.

Because really, once you start playing this game, the cartoonish robots on the cartoon landscape will simple be replaced by @ signs on an ascii landscape.

There's certainly something to be said for leaving things to the imagination, I'm just not sure I'm ready to praise a game for good design simply because the creators left out more complex visual elements.
posted by FuzzyLumpkins at 8:02 AM on August 27, 2010


I came across this on NeoGAF the other day and like some here I was creeped out, though I have a hard time putting into words why this might be. Certainly I have committed some fairly horrible actions in other video games without really thinking twice about it. Then games like this come along, and something about it crosses the line.

Without heading into rambling, introspective GYOB territory I will say it probably has a lot to do with the role-play aspect (I personally tend to play characters as 'nice' guys) and as edbles mentioned the "brutal clinical detail" of the attacks.
posted by Monster_Zero at 8:24 AM on August 27, 2010


And yes, all Roguelikes are Serial Killer Roguelikes, really, but still.

Strongly disagree! Having played way too many games of iLarn these
last few years, I can testify that every creature I killed was killed
in self-defense. Furthermore, most of them were non-sentient and the
majority of the remaining creatures was irredeemably evil.
(			 INTERIOR, COURTROOM

			 PROSECUTING ATTORNEY

	Your Honor, the prosecution will prove that Mr. Suetanvil
	ambushed and murdered the God Of Hellfire in order to steal
	his Potion of Cure Dianthroritis.  Furthermore, the
	prosecution will show that it was premeditated and that the
	defendant had gone to great lengths to acquire intrinsic
	stealth, speed, cancellation and a magic sword especially
	suited for killing demons.

HE SITS DOWN.  THE DEFENSE ATTORNEY RISES.


			   DEFENSE ATTORNEY

	Your Honor, the defense will show that this was a clearcut
	case of self defense.  My client was seeking the potion to
	cure his dying daughter and attempted to negotiate in good
	faith.  However, every attempt to contact Mr. Of Hellfile was
	met with immediate lethal force and Mr. Suetanvil survived
	only by luck and skill.  Still, due to the severity of the
	situation, he had hoped to speak to Mr. Of Hellfile
	personally, despite previous ill will, in the hope that some
	mutually beneficial arrangement could be made.  Mr. Of
	Hellfire did not agree and my client was forced to defend
	himself.

HE SITS DOWN.

SUETANVIL RISES AND LOOKS AROUND.  HE CASTS MAGIC FIRE, INCINERATING
EVERYONE IN THE COURTROOM, THEN LOOTS THE BODIES.)

posted by suetanvil at 8:45 AM on August 27, 2010 [6 favorites]


This has way less serial killing that any other rogue like.
posted by I Foody at 8:46 AM on August 27, 2010


More thoughts:
  1. I think this game is pretty vile and plan to never play it.
  2. That being said, it kind of makes sense. In a Roguelike, you enter a hostile world (typically, some kind of network of caves), kill all the hostile creatures and take their stuff. (And, sometimes, eat the corpses too.) So if you set a Roguelike in the "real world", the player ends up being a mass murderer of some kind.
  3. Having been a regular on rec.games.roguelike.development, this game doesn't surprise me. There were some really fucked up ideas being batted around there (e.g. this one).
  4. I still think the Roguelike genre is a really awesome thing. It's one place where one person can still write a rich, interesting RPG in a few months.
posted by suetanvil at 8:58 AM on August 27, 2010


Taking my cue from the usual spelling of the word in internet discourse, how about a serial killer rougelike? How long can you survive a landscape stalked by unnaturally-rosy-cheeked, emotionless mimes...
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 9:09 AM on August 27, 2010


That would never work. A mime is a terrible thing to waste.
posted by suetanvil at 11:25 AM on August 27, 2010


Reminds me of the classic 2000ad story rouge trooper.
posted by Artw at 11:31 AM on August 27, 2010


Five Ann Rules out of Five!

I've seen this in a couple of video gamey places. What the fuck is it?


Ann Rule is the author of the definitive work on Ted Bundy, having known him at the time of the killings, and went on from that to write a bunch of true crime books, particularly focusing on serial killers.
posted by Artw at 3:11 PM on August 27, 2010


hoax/troll?
posted by juv3nal at 3:23 AM on August 29, 2010


RPG confirms it's a hoax.
posted by griphus at 7:38 AM on August 29, 2010 [1 favorite]


And I was thinking vapourware. I guess the line is a thin one.

I'm going to call the mocked up demo a work of art in and of itself, mind.
posted by Artw at 8:12 AM on August 29, 2010


So, I guess someone is actually going to have to program this game now.
posted by empath at 8:33 AM on August 29, 2010


You know, in retrospect, the production values should have made me more suspicious. The game was much too detailed, even more so than Dwarf Fortress, and it actually had a usable GUI.
posted by demiurge at 1:03 PM on August 31, 2010


I'll be damned. He could have initially just called the video a mock-up but then people would have expected a game eventually. Probably the creator of the vid wanted to write the game but didn't have the skills or patience so rather than admit that he was lacking and had folded in the face of work he declared himself a troll. If he was really doing this for the troll he could have savored the trolling for months longer by simply not announcing a confession.

As to rougelikes being games where you are basically a serial killer:
Nonsense. At least in nethack - the one I play daily for weeks at a time - you are bound to something of a morality by your god and the other gods. Penalties for killing, praying &c that give offense serve as obstacles to progress. Quake, for example, is a much better candidate to be called a serial-killer game.

Now if you'll excuse me it's 6:00 AM here and I feel a chaotic elven wizard coming on.
posted by vapidave at 4:00 AM on September 3, 2010


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