Welcome to the second entry of this column in which I review forbidden (and forgotten) retro games with adult contents.
A lot of the games that will be revisited here will have, as well as adult themes, some contents that may offend somebody. But please remember, we are here just to re-discover something
rightfully forgotten, so don’t take it so seriously, we don’want to offend anybody. Just have fun and laugh 🙂
Today’s game is one of those FMV that flooded the market in the early Nineties, Plumbers Don’t Wear Ties.
The FMV technique was quite a thing back then and had its roots in the the late Eighties with games a la Dragon’s Lair or with home consoles like the Action Max which used VHS as a media. This highly forgotten console (which obviously never made it) used a VHS cassette in which it was recorded a “movie” the player coulòd interact with in some specific frames, for example shooting at cars/thugs/various objects. There was no way to win or lose, just score “points”: you can understand why this kind of technology was quickly swept under the rug…
A few years after some companied tried it again, now with these full motion video in which, in theory, to the player was given more chances to interact with the story. The champion of this technique was the doomed 3DO console (but even the CD-i to be honest), always in the front line when there was something awful to show, for which were released a bunch of this titles, like the recently rediscovered Night Trap (a 25th anniversary remastered verision will be available this year).
The interaction level in Plumbers Don’t Wear Ties is dangerously close to zero and, although is usually labeled as a FMV is actually a sequence of images in slideshow…yes, like the ones you see full of data and graphics at the company meetings. And boring the same way…
Why is forgotten?
For its adult contents, of course, as all of the games covered in this column. It happened in the past that the censorship banned some games for adult contents when, in the end there was nothing more than some sexual related hints but in this case we can see (in the uncut version) almost fully frontal male and female nudity. As a man I cannot comment too much on the male protagonist (but it looks like someone a girl could drool for) but as for the female protagonist, she has a body to kill (SPOILER and big boobs 🙂 )and even if you look at her picures now, well…she aged very well! 🙂
Plus, we have to consider that the FMV genre had a very short life for a series on unlucky coincivence and for its intrinsic lack of gameplay. These kind of game were also “popular” on a series of highly unsuccessful consoles, like 3DO, CD-i an Sega-CD that gambled almost entilrely on this new technique that ultimately failed to the test of the market.
Why is forbidden?
Plumbers Don’t Wear Ties came out for the 3DO, a consoled badly advertised and with poor sales, especially for the sky high retail price (around 600$ in the early 90s!!!), the poor games library and the fact that it was licensed to various companies that produced all different versions of the consoles: although they were all compatible with all the games released, the people were confused to see so many different and pricey consoles and the sales never took off.
Why is fun?
Let me guess: poor acting? poor gameplay? Poor interactivity? Poor everything? The only memorable things are some nuduty scenes and that’s saying something on the gameplay. It would have been the same to distribute an adult romance short movie. It’s also fun for the unrealistic situations and for the slideshow style of the game, which is something very, VERY annoying.
How can I play it?
If you’re lucky enough to own (or wealthy enough to buy) one of the various versions of the 3DO you can buy the game but watch out, because it is very, VERY expensive. If you’re poor but smart you can find everywhere on the internet some rip-off of the game for PC (yes, it was released also for the PC…) and you can play it without any problem using DOSBox. But if you’re a rela lover of crap you should definitely try the original one.
Something similar but a bit less crappy???
It’s very hard to find a not-crappy FMV but if I had a gun to my head I’d say one of these:
- Phantasmagoria, a point-and-click adventure with an horror theme, released for the CD-i that features real actors acting on blue screen;
- Dragon’s Lair, of course the original arcade version, a game that shocked (positively) the gaming world when it came out back then on laserdisc for its detailed cartoonish graphics;
- The 7th Guest, an adventure with a lot of logic puzzles to solve in order to conplete the game
And finally, if you need other games related to this which is crappy and adult oriented like Plumbers Don’t Wear Ties, stick around, more games will be covered soon!