"How will this person prove it?"
June 7, 2012 7:27 PM   Subscribe

In a few weeks, Peter Molyneux (Fable, Black & White) will launch the first of 22 gaming/social media experiments. Curiosity will have one winner, with DLC available for up to £50,000.
posted by yellowbinder (30 comments total) 10 users marked this as a favorite
At this point I feel like Molyneux is an bad ex-boyfriend who won't stop calling. You broke my heart Peter, it's over, move on.
posted by JimmyJames at 7:37 PM on June 7, 2012 [13 favorites]

...revealing something "truly amazing, absolutely unique", says Molyneux.

I've played all the Fables. I've played both Black & White games. Fool me multiple times, Peter...
posted by Spatch at 7:51 PM on June 7, 2012 [4 favorites]

I think it's a really neat experiment. I'm certainly curious how gamers will react once it's released. Those playing will no doubt compete to be the one who gets to see what Peter hid within the cube. It could be anything. Art? A code? A secret URL? GPS coordinates?

Will players form large coalitions, as usually happens, or will the nature of the single-player reveal fragment those usually tight-knit communities. How will the MeFightClub play it, if they do? The Penny Arcade forums? Will the goons at Something Awful try to grief the ending, somehow? They might have the manpower to ensure a goon is the one who sees the reveal, and then simply never speak of what it was... that would appeal to them.

Amongst those motivations, will a team pool money to buy the DLC, or will it be a wealthy individual. Will someone use it as a stepping stone to Internet fame by live streaming themselves using it toward the end, likely to be the one to see the reveal?

It's such a simple premise. I was rather nonplussed when I read about it earlier today, but it's stuck in my thoughts. I find myself extremely curious.

It's a lousy game, but it's a fascinating social experiment. The only prediction I'm willing to make is that, despite the irritated public response, it will be a Big Deal.
posted by gilrain at 7:52 PM on June 7, 2012 [1 favorite]

Ha. I didn't even have to make this joke.
posted by 2bucksplus at 7:54 PM on June 7, 2012 [4 favorites]

To be clear, it started going south after he promised me a revolutionary AI canine companion and I got a mutt who would bark endlessly at carrots while I was being eaten by balverines.

I'm just too jaded to take his claims seriously.
posted by JimmyJames at 7:55 PM on June 7, 2012 [6 favorites]

I look forward to reading about the results of this!
posted by Saxon Kane at 7:57 PM on June 7, 2012

This would be ridiculous even if it wasn't Molyneux making the claims. Also, Ian Bogost beat him to the punch 2 years ago or so.
posted by codacorolla at 7:59 PM on June 7, 2012

I hear the disillusionment with the man, and he's earned it a few times over. I just can't stay mad at someone endlessly creative, who dreams much, much too big, fails many times over, and keeps on dreaming. For me, it will be a sad day if Peter Molyneux stops trying to build impossible games.

That said, I haven't played the results of his dreams since Black & White (which I loved, actually). I'm just glad he's out there. And always interested to see what he's dreaming of.
posted by gilrain at 8:01 PM on June 7, 2012 [5 favorites]

I like this idea. I would worry about latency ruining the end for the diamond pick wielder though. I would also prefer the shape be more interesting. A cube is just lazy.
posted by michaelh at 8:06 PM on June 7, 2012

Yeah, but I don't think "lies" really applies here. It's all about the setup of a simple experiment and seeing how people react to it. Who knows if the reveal will be "truly amazing," but it will definitely be unique. It's not like he has combat or immersion or AI to oversell. It will be interesting to see how this plays out, and that's the whole point.
posted by yellowbinder at 8:09 PM on June 7, 2012 [1 favorite]

Exactly. I suspect that the anticipation of watching it play out will drive the participation and guarantee at least some success and player numbers. After all, you can't watch it play out from afar if nobody winds up participating. And if the player numbers remain low towards the end, why, hell... why not start chipping away yourself? You could be the one who sees the result. The media, blogs, forums... they'd all want to know what you saw. What would you tell them?

...what if they put something in the cube that nobody would really believe. Like, "Guys, I'm telling you... it was just a photo Bill Murray."
posted by gilrain at 8:16 PM on June 7, 2012 [5 favorites]

It's the first result on Google Image Search for Bill Murray. I'm telling the truth!
posted by gilrain at 8:17 PM on June 7, 2012 [1 favorite]

DLC available for up to £50,000

posted by BrotherCaine at 8:41 PM on June 7, 2012 [1 favorite]

Okay, so I guess I'm not up to speed here. Why is everyone disillusioned with this guy?
posted by schmod at 8:52 PM on June 7, 2012

Why is everyone disillusioned with this guy?

He has a history of making ridiculously bold claims about his games which then fall exceedingly flat in execution. That's sort of his whole "thing" at this point.
posted by curious nu at 8:56 PM on June 7, 2012 [1 favorite]

(Which is not to say that people don't enjoy his games; they often do! But they don't even approach the hype. Whether you want to blame the man or the "scene" or both for that is up to the individual.)
posted by curious nu at 8:57 PM on June 7, 2012

Molyneux is a classically terrible designer; in that when he gets it right he fails to recognize what about it was right, and cannot even recreate previous success. I mean, Populous is still one of his best games, over 20 years later. His further attempts at god games are increasingly terrible.
posted by mek at 10:05 PM on June 7, 2012 [1 favorite]

After an undivulged, large number of taps, the cube will open, revealing something "truly amazing, absolutely unique", says Molyneux.

Oh for fuck's sake.

You know that bit in Fight Club where they get to pick one person from history to fight? I would fight Peter Molyneux.
posted by Justinian at 10:53 PM on June 7, 2012 [9 favorites]

Or M. Night Shyamalan, but I think they're actually the same person.
posted by Justinian at 10:55 PM on June 7, 2012 [5 favorites]

This game concept feels so full of contempt for the player. It makes Cow Clicker look like a love poem.
posted by egypturnash at 12:26 AM on June 8, 2012 [1 favorite]

Peter Molyneux - "I could name at least 10 features in games that I've made up to stop journalists going to sleep and I really apologise to the team for that."

Molyneux designed/produced some of the greatest games - of the 80s and early 90s. Syndicate, Populous, Powermonger all have a special place in my gaming history.

Everything since has been a stack of massive hype, led by Molyneux himself, followed by near total disappointment. There's zero reason to think this would be any different.
posted by Hobo at 12:31 AM on June 8, 2012

Rock, Paper, Shotgun Decides Who Won E3 2012

After a modest indoor firework display and pageant, the mild-mannered developer took to the large stage standing in front of a massive screen that showed only one word, writ in 50ft letters: “DREAMSPANGLE”.

“Dreamspangle,” said Molyneux, as the Chicago Symphony Orchestra began playing the theme to Diagnosis Murder. “Dreamspangle,” replied the attending press and investors with one voice, as they bowed their heads and solemnly prayed.

“But what if the Dreamspangle could smell you too?” Molyneux suddenly declared, startling the crowd into screams of excitement, as the screens behind the developer began to glow. He spoke once more: “Consequences.”

Fifteen cheerleaders walked angrily across the stage, their pom-poms by their sides, bunchied-hair failing to bob. Once they had gone, Molyneux sat on a stool and wept. For ten minutes he cried, his tears pooling in two scoops hung around his shoulders, while the screens began to rotate 360 degrees. As they settled back into place, a gasp spread across the theatre. The words “Tear-based controls?” slowly appeared in front of them. Dipping a finger into each scoop, the Populous creator flicked the salty facewater toward an augmented iPad, and stood back as children began flooding onto the stage, pawing at the screens and begging for freedom. The lights went down and the crowd silently filed out, their lives forever changed.

posted by GallonOfAlan at 12:33 AM on June 8, 2012 [8 favorites]

Molyneux designed/produced some of the greatest games - of the 80s and early 90s. Syndicate, Populous, Powermonger all have a special place in my gaming history.

Don't forget Dungeon Keeper !
posted by Pendragon at 12:33 AM on June 8, 2012 [1 favorite]

Fables 2 and 3 were really good.
posted by Elementary Penguin at 2:21 AM on June 8, 2012 [1 favorite]

I really enjoyed Fable 2, but it helps to not have paid much attention to the hypefest that went before it. Fable 3 was not good.

I'm not even sure why Molydeux still exists because it's hard to out-parody the man.
posted by graventy at 5:53 AM on June 8, 2012

Wait a second... infectious personal charisma, powerful reality distortion field, radically innovative ideas... he's the gaming equivalent of a Steve Jobs who never manages to deliver.
posted by gilrain at 6:16 AM on June 8, 2012 [1 favorite]

The players need food
posted by Flashman at 12:18 PM on June 8, 2012 [1 favorite]

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