From 2010 to 2014 Richard Cobbett wrote Crapshoot, a column about rolling the cube to carry random obscure video games again into the sunshine. This week, we’re holding out for a hero. Sorry, wait. We’re holding our fingers over our mouths to keep away from hurting his emotions by sniggering too loudly.
In a not-too-distant future, a world oppressed by the shadow of Terrorism cried out for its saviour. And the counter-terrorism task-force identified solely as HELL listened. Its greatest scientists gathered and cast a plan. They made a prototype warrior; the primary of many able to doing what no mere flesh and blood man ever might. They made him robust. They made him heroic. They made him a residing god.
They made one mistake. They named him Bert Higgins.
We could by no means know what satisfied the forces of HELL to create a cyborg able to disabling entire armies of hardened terrorists just by saying his title. Who wants a machine-gun when simply these three syllables—which you simply know can be grunted in an Arnie voice—might result in criminals and hostages alike collapsing into the identical pool of hysterical laughter and doubtless a little bit little bit of pee. There is not any going again from that. Who cares if the day is saved if even the mayor cannot preserve a straight face whereas handing the hero his medals afterwards?
And it isn’t like it is a small matter. Names have energy. Simply think about a few of the most most badass quotes in film historical past if the Hollywood studio system was run by the advertising and marketing geniuses who thought the general public would really feel comforted by having an organisation known as HELL watching over them.
“Now why they name me ‘Soiled Cuthbert’. Each soiled job that comes alongside.”
“I’m Ripper… Tearer… Slasher… Gouger. I’m the Enamel within the Darkness, the Talons within the Night time. Mine is Power… and Lust… and Energy! I AM NIGEL!”
“I shall go away you as you left me, as you left her: marooned for all eternity within the heart of a useless planet…buried alive. Buried alive.”
“Do you anticipate me to speak?”
“No, Mr. Fart, I anticipate you to die.”
In fact, in the actual world, you have to give the creators some credit score. Bert Higgins: The Man From HELL could also be within the operating for the stupidest title ever, however you are by no means, ever going to neglect it, are you? Even once you’re mendacity in your death-bed, hopefully at the very least many months from now, there will be at the very least one cell of gray matter recalling that at one level you turned conscious that this recreation existed and that it was actual. That is fairly an achievement, even in a world with Tongue of the Fatman.
Briefly, sure, it is an epic, epic failure. But in addition a little bit of a hit. This was an indie recreation seeking to get some consideration, and it wasn’t more likely to do it with wonderful motion or photorealistic graphics. If it wasn’t known as… nicely… this, wouldn’t it ever have gotten a overview within the esteemed PC Format, even a teeny-tiny one on the again that mentioned to not hassle getting it? In all probability not. On the very least, it will get bonus factors for its title being very, very deliberate, which is greater than you’ll be able to say for a sure Nintendo DS recreation known as—genuinely no kidding—Faceez.
Regardless of its foolish title, Bert Higgins is a deeply po-faced shooter, spiced up by inadvertently humorous messages like “Because of your incompetence, too many hostages had been killed. This has been an embarrassing day for the BERT venture.” It is onerous to not preserve imagining the poor damned souls again in HELL slumped at their terminals, attempting to work out the place all of it went flawed. The day they came upon their careers had been now within the fingers of a cyborg known as Bert Higgins, most likely.
As the last word weapon, Bert Higgins undoubtedly lives as much as his title. Sadly, as I’ll have talked about a few times, his title is Bert Higgins. He can punch a terrorist’s coronary heart out by one other terrorist’s again with little downside, however that does not assist a lot when mentioned terrorists have introduced alongside robotic spiders and about 5 goons for each hostage. What little ammo you get is spent very, very quick, enemies are invisible if you do not have line-of-sight on them, they usually can kill poor Bert Higgins with little or no ceremony even on common problem. It could assist if the controls included the flexibility to intention in 360 levels with the mouse whereas shifting with the keys, however they do not, so it would not.
I put the blame for Bert’s uselessness on HELL, whose coaching leaves a lot to be desired. Bert’s closing check begins with an amazing demonstration of how a lot they worth intelligence and initiative. He has to flee from a very sealed room with no provides and no help… aside from the door key sitting a couple of steps away on his desk. A case for Jonathan Creek this isn’t. Subtlety then goes fully out of the window to get replaced by gunning down a village stuffed with guards with a shotgun that appears to be utilizing dwell ammo. On the very least, if you happen to die, the sport merely ends with out you ever discovering out that your entire existence is a part of a conspiracy to blah blah, who cares.
No, actually. I am an enormous advocate of story in video games, however I draw the road at turning into emotionally invested in a personality known as Bert Higgins. And I’ve performed the House Quest video games. what House Quest’s love curiosity known as? Ambassador Beatrice Wankmeister. After Bert Higgins, that is nothing.
Okay. So it is nearly nothing.
Bert Higgins: The Man From HELL by no means received an enormous launch again within the day. I learn about it due to that PC Format overview I discussed, however did not really get to play it for whereas longer. You may although. Because of attempting to trace down a duplicate for this very column, certainly one of its creators determined the time had lastly come to declare it abandonware. You may obtain the entire thing from the Web Archive, and it runs simply advantageous within the mighty DOSBox with none technical fiddling.
Is it value taking part in? Probably not, aside from one level that should not be forgotten. By doing so, you will all the time have the ability to say you have performed a recreation known as Bert Higgins: The Man From HELL, and who might put a value on that? I might, and it might be £50,000. However it’s Mort and co’s recreation, they usually’ve gone with free as an alternative. They’re clearly nicer/extra beneficiant/extra grounded in actuality than I’m.
One minor level, although. I do have to shortly make clear a press release made by one of many creators of Bert Higgins, lest a few of the different video games I personal get the flawed concept. Whereas it is completely right that this column is not nearly lynching crap video games, let it by no means be forgotten that lynching all the time stays an choice!
Not this time although. With Bert, I am simply joyful to lastly have proof his recreation exists, so no person can ever once more accuse me of simply making it up. Until in fact, this has all been a dream…
Just one option to discover out, is not there?