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Wildcard Stream Vol. 33 - One-Hit Wonders

Four unintentionally similar games filled with mid-90s ZZTer humor and slow progress

Authored By: Dr. Dos
Published: Feb 15, 2023
Part of Series: Wildcard Streams
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♦ Livestream of the following 4 ZZT worlds. Originally streamed on February 12th, 2023 ♦
• (0:00) "Kwest" by Michael Goldman (1994) []
• (52:56) "MNMN" by Justin Delp (1997) []
• (58:50) "Unga Khan 4" by Dynamo01 (1995) []
• (1:34:38) "The Mask" by Ben Anderson (1997) []

A set of four worlds whose authors have never shown up on the Museum before, and only appeared on the private queue once. Despite my generosity in describing them pre-stream as "one-hit wonders", these games are more miss than hit.

Kwest was the best of the bunch, perhaps just because it was first in line. It had a manic energy to it, including characters from and opinions on mid-90s anime, including a puzzle based around obtaining a bucket to soak Ranma with. A rebel force is slowly conquering America, and its up to you to stop them mostly through infiltration. It can be difficult to navigate, and difficult to figure out what you're even meant to do, but it has that oddball humor in ZZT games of this era done generally well.

MNMN puts players into the E-321 spaceship and sends them off to shoot down some enemy fighters. And then it kind of ends. Extremely short and not much to say.

Unga Khan 4 has the disadvantage of being the 4th game in a series where we lack the prequels. It includes a recap at least. Khan is back, and your job is to save the Earth once again. Some fun moments like watching your school catch fire, and a few decent enough jokes. It's got your usual Barney and Energizer bunny cameos as well. It's got that same kind of energy Kwest had, but with a much slower pace and even more trouble figuring out what you're supposed to actually be doing.

Lastly, The Mask, a game which very clearly states on the title screen that it is not related to the Jim Carrey film from 1994. You play as Stanley Ipkiss....

Listen. I know.

You play as Stanley Ipkiss and seem to have a magical mask that grants you special abilities, and boy it all seems vaguely familiar. As I said during the stream, I haven't seen that movie since it was reasonably new so the details of the plot are a bit fuzzy making it hard for me to say what's original material or not. Anyway, you run a drug deal on the moon in this one. It's also full of wacky humor and impossible to navigate! An incredible unintentional theme.

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