Tagged: fun guns

Fun Gun Award: Gibhard’s Gibsucker(?)


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Gibhard is a retro-2.5D-aesthetic FPS that is being made single-handedly by Bram Eulaers (I don’t think it’s even in alpha, yet). The game so far looks fantastic (visually, ludically, etc.)

Bram posted a video on twitter recently which shows off (among other things) a secondary fire function on a gun that I think deserves a Fun Gun Award.

So, if you watched the video then you’ll know which gun I’m talking about. It’s the one that sucks up physical objects and then spits them back out into the world. You can use this to press floor switches, or to crush monsters (I don’t know what the gun is called, but I’m going to call it “the Gibsucker” in this post).

I think this gun is ecstatically amazing, and the best way for me to explain my perspective is to compare the Gibsucker with a gun that seems superficially identical: Half-life 2’s Gravity Gun. I have no idea if Bram Eaulaers was thinking of the Gravity Gun when he designed this gun’s mechanic, but nevertheless it acts as a good foil.
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Fun Gun Awards: the laser gun from Lastronaut

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The Fun Gun Award™, is an award given to video game guns that aren’t necessarily effective, don’t necessarily give a player any tactical advantage, but which have creative behavior, unique design, and are fun to use. These guns might suck, they might be overpower, they might be unbalanced, but they’re so fun that I want to use them over and over.

I remember playing a small mobile game a while back called Lastronaut (by Darrin Henein and Stephan Leroux) and there was one particular weapon that I really enjoyed using: the Multilaser (although I don’t believe any of the weapons have official names, you just pick them up and use them).

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And yet more guns that don’t exist

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A long time ago I came up with a bunch of ideas for silly and absurd FPS guns. I made a couple blog posts listing out these ideas way back when. Because of the ridiculousness of the guns, my friend suggested that the hypothetical game they would appear in could be called Shifting Zones of Craziness.

And now I’ve come up with a third list of guns (that don’t exist) for Shifting Zones of Craziness (a game that doesn’t exist). (The Land Shark Gun, which is pictured at the top, does exist and is in the game Armed and Dangerous.)

Trebuchet: Player is carrying a trebuchet on his shoulder. It launches rocks at the enemies.

Vampirism Gun: Turns opponent into vampire. If they don’t drink the blood of other players then they die. Secondary fire is a UV sunlamp.

Magma Vomit Gun: When you shoot another player they become infected with Lava Illness. They randomly vomit magma out of their mouth in a short arc which creates pools of magma on the ground. The magma can hurt all players including the one vomiting, so if he’s running forward when he vomits then he’ll take damage.

Glitch Gun: A player shot with this gun glitches through the geometry, falls through the level, and dies.

Grandma With Soup Gun: Fires a grandmother holding a bowl of steaming soup. When a player is hit by the grandma, she follows him around demanding that he eat some soup because he’s nothing but skin and bones. The player must stop and eat the soup. If he doesn’t, the grandmother calls him ungrateful which immediately kills him.

Cthulhu Gun: Fires a slumbering Cthulhu. If anyone bumps into him or shoots him then Cthulhu awakens and all players die immediately.
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How Pocket Tanks’ excess of ridiculous weapons encourages players to care more about having fun than about winning

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For whatever reason I started thinking about a game I used to play long, long ago called Pocket Tanks. As I thought about all the strange and different weapons in the game, I thought I’d make this post a Fun Gun Award and talk about some of the most creative weapons. However, with 400 different guns (30-40 in shareware versions) I realized this would be pointless.

And I as thought about the quantity of different weapons I realized that the majority of them were not balanced and despite this the game was still fun. I realized something about how the quantity and variety of weapons affects the very nature of the game.

So, here we go…

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Fun Gun Awards: multiple guns from the Resistance series

cryogun

The Fun Gun Award™ is an award I give to video game guns that aren’t necessarily effective, aren’t necessarily balanced, don’t necessarily give the player any tactical advantage, but which do have creative behavior, unique design, and which are fun to use. These guns might suck (or they might even be overpowered), but they’re so fun to use that they’re worth talking about.

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I don’t think the Resistance series gets enough credit.

It’s visuals and enemies were a little dull and plain (everything is mostly grey and brown), but I actually kind of liked the Chimera’s design with their weird back pillars and multiple eyes. The game also had a health system that was a sensible compromise between regenerating health and static health. The story even had some creative moments: for example, in the Resistance 2 the player character is slowly becoming evil and has to be assassinated by the end of the game; in Resistance 3 you play as the killer.

But, of course, the most important thing that needs to stand out in an FPS are the weapons. And that’s one of the things that really shine in Resistance. Some of the weapons are pretty standard fair, but a lot of them play around with creative and clever mechanics that change the way the player thinks and changes the way he plays the game. Among these imaginative weapons, none of them are useless, all of them are effective, and some of them are flat out overpowered (which is a change pace for a Fun Gun Award).

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Fun Gun Awards: Torque Bow from Gears of War

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The Fun Gun Award™, is an award given to video game guns that aren’t necessarily effective, don’t necessarily give a player any tactical advantage, but which do have creative behavior, unique design, and which are fun to use. These guns might suck, but they’re so fun that I want to keep using them.

Last time I talked about the Storm Bow from Heretic 2. Now it’s time to talk about another fun bow.

The Torque Bow is a weird gun to get a Fun Gun Award™, mainly because it’s actually useful.

It’s useful, it’s unique, it’s versatile. It’s kind of an amazingly well designed weapon that can actually stand up to other weapons in Gears of War. And its design has barely changed over the series.
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Fun Gun Awards: Storm Bow from Heretic 2

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The Fun Gun Award™, is an award for video game guns that aren’t necessarily effective, don’t necessarily give a player a tactical advantage, but which have creative behavior, unique design, and are fun to use. These guns might suck, but they’re so fun that I WANT to learn to use them effectively.

I liked Heretic 2. Probably more than it deserves; or, less than it deserves. I liked the weapons, the visual design, and the plethora of non-human characters and enemies (after the first environment, I don’t think there are any more human enemies). I even liked the silly Ogles in their mountain mines, dancing and shaking their butts every time I saved them.

This was like the sneezing panda video of character animations.

This was like the sneezing panda video of character animations.

I also really liked the Storm Bow, although it wasn’t always that useful.

There is a certain beauty to the literalness of the Storm Bows name. It’s not poetic. It doesn’t shoot a storm of arrows, or do damage equivalent of a storm. It literally shoots a storm at opponents.
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