Main Column

A Ball Best Served Cold

« August 2006 »

Memo to Tom Neven: YOU ARE DUMB.

Let's make a deal, right here and now, oh mighty religious culture warriors. I won't criticize the font choice and margin settings of your gay-bashing press releases if you stop reviewing video games. This is a major concession on my part, so I suggest you take me up on it. I don't get this fucking generous every day.

You don't need to be reviewing video games anyway. It's a waste of your time, time that could be spent praying or tying people to fences or furiously beating off to scat porn or whatever the hell you freaks do in your free time. You're not even helping your fellow freaks. And I present as evidence for this Tom Neven's review of Table Tennis for the 360.

Neven wrote the review for "Plugged In", which is Focus on the Family horning in on the whole CAPAlert deal - reviewing popular culture from the perspective of insane, self-flagellating repression. And while I confess there is a purpose, however insipid, in puritan theocratic freakjobs telling other puritan theocratic freakjobs that they shouldn't buy the "V For Vendetta" DVD because it doesn't portray puritan theocratic freakjobs in a good light, why the FUCK are they reviewing video games?

You may not be able to judge a book by its cover, but when it comes to the concerns of Focus On The Family, even these dipshits can judge a game by its cover. If the game's got titties, the cover will have titties. If the game has demons, the cover will have demons. If the game has guns, the cover will have guns. If the game involves the committing of grand theft auto, or mortals engaged in kombat, this will be conveyed on the cover in two-inch high letters.

In my travels, I've come across a total of ONE game cover that was misleading. If you bought Bust A Move 2 for Playstation in the hopes that the game would involve the psychotic propping of eyelids with toothpicks, you'd have been disappointed to get home and see cute dinosaurs shooting colored balls at other colored balls. But even then, culture warriors would have been pleasantly surprised at the wholesomeness, not blindsided by immorality.

And anyway, Neven sucks as a game reviewer. He makes IGN's slack-jawed chronic masturbators read like the love child of William S. Burroughs and Pauline Kael. He wastes a good 3/4 of the review on this faux-Biblical look at the history of games from Pong onward. He thinks this is clever. And trust me, as someone with a shitload of experience of using the word "Lo" to comedic effect, he ain't clever.

When we finally get to the meat of the thrust of his point, as it were, it's an observation that, coming as it does in August of 2006, is behind the times even for Focus On The Family. ACTUAL QUOTE TIME!

"And Rockstar Games did exercise restraint. There are no explosions. No one dies. Indeed, the warriors play hard, but vile trash talk is nowhere to be found. From a godlike view from above and behind his own warrior, the human fights his electronic foes by maneuvering his player with the Xbox controller."

Yes, the people who made Grand Theft Morals made a ping-pong game. We know. We've known for about a year. Any potential the irony might have had got spent within three posts on every game website on the planet, thanks. But I am glad he pointed this out, because it will become important when we discuss his inaccurate, yet highly amusing, conclusion. ACTUAL VERDICT TIME!

"In Table Tennis, the human does not actually put the spin on the ball. He tells the computer to put the spin on the ball, and in this arises eventual boredom—and sore thumbs."

I'm not sure how Tom Neven expected this game to be controlled. It's still at least two and a half months from when any of us will be able to even swing a racket naturally. Imparting spin at the same time, I'm guessing, will be beyond even the Wii. But what I love best is that, after all the ranting and raving by the Liebermans, the Bennetts, the Hillaries, the Dobsons, the Thompsons, et al, Rockstar Games finally produces a game with no violence, no sex, no swearing, no blood, no gore, no crime, no debauchery. Just good, honest competition and pure gaming intensity.

And this little puritan fucker is BORED OUT OF HIS JESUS-LOVING SKULL BY IT.

So just stop reviewing video games. You don't need to pretend to be evaluating their immorality for hours on end, with only a trickle of drool and the pup tent in your pants betraying the fact that you're not actually playing it to warn away others. We won't think any less of you. Hell, we CAN'T think any less of you.

Syndicate content