Games Into Space

by L.B. Jeffries

8 September 2008

 

On September 9th, 2008 the United Nations announced they would be launching a probe into outer-space. Its main goal would be to take photos of several of Jupiter’s moons, do a closer fly-by of Pluto, and eventually launch itself into the heliosphere that lies on the outskirts of our solar system. As with the original Voyager satellites, several discs and storage devices would be equipped on it so that anyone who found it could gain a better understanding of our species. Thanks to advances in data storage, several terabytes worth of data could now be stored on the Satellite that would be christened ‘Cheng Ho One’ after the famous Chinese explorer. In addition to the thousands of songs, photos, movies, and books being stored on the satellite, it has been decided by the committee that a video game should be stored on it. As with all the other media on the satellite, public internet forums were opened in all great nations so that the entire global community could decide which game would be placed on the satellite. The following is various excerpts from the transcript of those debates.

 

12:24:32

PudgePacket : Firsties! And Call of Duty 4 is defenetly what we shuld put on there!

DukeMa : I don’t see why we should have to do just one game. Some games I love: Ico, Shadow of the Colossus, Mass Effect, Psychonauts, and Final Fantasy should definitely all be on there!

PudgePacket : wtf, no one has ever heard of those games and even if they do they suck becuase no one has heard of them

Frank D : I think we should remember that this is the game by which an alien species is going to judge our entire race. How do we even explain the nature of a game to another species? How do we explain that violence as recreation is not the same thing as actual war? We don’t want to gi- COMMENT EXCEEDS FORUM POSTING LIMIT

DukeMa : @ PudgePacket  
They’re all great games and would definitely be great if an alien species saw them. They’re all perfect classics and just because they’re old doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be good picks for going into Cheng Ho.

JoeBlow : @ DukeMa  
Good God, those games are considered old? What about Duke Nukem, Populous, or just plain old Super Mario Brothers? We also can’t rule out something like the original SpaceWar! It was the first video game after all.

Frank D : Actually, SpaceWar wasn’t necessarily the first game ever made. If we look at the pure ludological and anthropological history of games then we ca- COMMENT EXCEEDS FORUM POSTING LIMIT

4:15:54

MegaMagi224 : Look, I’m not saying Halo 3 is a bad game. But you yourself said I wouldn’t truly appreciate the game unless I played the entire trilogy, read all the backstory, and the thrown-away screenplays.

PudgePacket : Screw the fanboys! And did someone up there say Tomb Raider? Rolling on floor. Laughing my ass off. 

Frank D : Pudge, Tomb Raider may be a bit ridiculous in terms of Lara’s physical proportions but she’s also a strong, independent woman in a sea of games about saving the Princess.

PudgePacket : COMMENT DELETED DUE TO PROFANITY

xxgirltankxx Hey, I’m a girl and I don’t think that! I think we should put Fallout on there. Their the best RPG’s around because you could do anything you wanted!

Megator99 @ xxgirltankxx  
A game about how we nuked ourselves into oblivion and then kept fighting and nuking ourselves anyways? I’m not really sure that’s what we want on a satellite that an alien species might pick up. I’m with whoever up above said Halo.

JoeBlow9943 : Oh right, a video game about our war with the first alien species we ever met. That’d be great. Dumbass. These are some of my favorite games: Ico, Road Rage, Pain Killer, and definitely Psychonauts.

10:19:04

Frank D : Look, I’m sure we all appreciate the suggestion of PacMan. But sockpuppeting the forums and voting for it over and over again isn’t getting us anywhere.

CrapTalk33 : Has anyone said Shadow of the Colossus yet? Because that game is amazing.

xxgirltankxx : Dude, most of the people who play that game who are human don’t understand what the Hell is going on, why would a space alien? I think it should be Psychonauts.

Frank D : OH FOR THE LOVE OF GOD! IT’S JUST A QUIRKY AND INTERESTING GAME. The necessity of an acrimonious army of fans supporting it can’t change that fact. It’s just the gaming equivalent of the wacky B movie. We need something that is representative of the entire glo- COMMENT EXCEEDS FORUM POSTING LIMIT

TechMachek : Maybe we should have the most technologically advanced game? I think Crysis is the best looking game out there.

MegaMagi75 : Yeah right, I doubt even the space aliens have a computer that can run it. Has anyone checked the South Korean forums yet? They all unanimously voted for Starcraft. I don’t really like RTS games though. Has anyone said Call of Duty 4 yet? I think that should go.

Frank D : COMMENT DELETED DUE TO PROFANITY

 

The forums closed after three days of heated debate. The Cheng Ho committee, after reviewing the forums, were unable to conclude which game the video game discussion had selected. Having never played games themselves and no proper understanding of what games were considered good, they instead decided to save space and put the complete collection of Everybody Loves Raymond where the video game would’ve gone. Not wanting the gaming community to be left out, they did include a game that the committee itself selected: the Flying Toaster Screensaver.

We all know how critical it is to keep independent voices alive and strong on the Internet. Please consider a donation to support our work. We are a wholly independent, women-owned, small company. Your donation will help PopMatters stay viable through these changing, challenging times where costs have risen and advertising has dropped precipitously. PopMatters needs your help to keep publishing. Thank you.


//comments
//Mixed media
//Blogs

'Hopscotch' is Anchored in Walter Matthau's Playful, Irascible Personality

// Short Ends and Leader

"With his novel, Hopscotch, Brian Garfield challenged himself to write a suspenseful spy tale in which nobody gets killed.

READ the article