the writings of a mind

Title: Hellboy
Genre: Action Adventure
Big Word: Toast
Strap: A previously undiscovered eighth layer of Hell. Someone tell Dante.

It was a tragic dénouement. Cryo, painfully aware of its own imminent death, let loose its wild, barely-controlled powers, laying waste to the town it grew up in, reducing the high school in which it had been subject to so much torment, to burning debris. Houses destroyed, buildings demolished, and one particularly unpleasant mother filled with knives, its fury was finally at an end, this ravaging outburst having drained the very life from its body. Cryo, despairingly, was dead.

Days later, as I was walking amongst the cooled remains of where our school had once stood, I couldn’t help but be struck by the peace that lay across the broken fragments. I stopped, thinking upon the recent times, trying to equate the horror of the past few days and this gentle silence that now surrounded me. The disingenuity hovered in the air about me, as if two worlds were improperly joined. When, from betwixt the loosened bricks, came a bloodied arm, the hand grabbing me violently about the leg, it’s vice grip cold and grim against my flesh. In that very moment I felt the accumulation of pain, distress, hatred and despair that had lived inside Cryo for its entire existence. And I was gruesomely aware of my part in this anguish.

As I saw the life of Cryo flashing through my mind - the scars of hurtful reviews, the misunderstandings, the confused press releases, the slightly mistranslated instruction booklets – I was made fully aware of each wound received, each moment of self-confidence being stripped away, each sleepless night after another cruel comment. And as I saw this all, as I lived it through, I became wholly aware of something I had never before known. It became clear to me, that somehow, two years ago, I missed one.

So it is that now I am able to complete the work; to lay the corpse of Cryo to rest. Finally, I can inform you of quite how crap Hellboy is.

Imagine everything that’s ever been wrong with a Cryo game, all rolled into one hideous behemoth of dreadfulness. Imagine awful graphics, impossibly awkward controls, invisible barriers, no mouse option, terrible dialogue, gnawingly bad voice acting, no option to skip endless cut-scenes, ill-placed save points, and the ridiculous ability to run away from enemies until they aren’t there any more.

And then imagine it in an entirely meaningless story framework, featuring the most laughable player character ever pixellated, in a buggy, frequently crashing engine.

As the crusted hand of Cryo fell lifeless from my leg, and sank beneath the detritus it had, days earlier, pulled down on top of itself, a single, perfectly shaped, tear fell from the base of my cheek, and splashed onto the rubble below. And do you know what later grew on that very spot?

Weeds and stuff.

Margin Note:

Dobbed In

It’s almost impossible to say how beholden we are to Andrew Dobson for providing us with the opportunity to play Hellboy. It’s very difficult to find how to express the gratitude and debt we owe to him. Perhaps the phrase, "you sod" goes someway toward capturing the emotions involved. Oh, and apologies to Stephen King and Brian De Palma.

 A sore reminder of why not to feel too guilty about Cryo’s not making games any more.


Tech Specs:

Publisher: Cryo!
Developer: Dark Horse Entertainment
Price: Damnation
Minimum System: P 233, 32 Mb RAM, 400 Mb HD space, 3D card
Recommended: PII 300, 64 Mb RAM, 550 Mb HD space
Multi-player: No
Web Address: (probably dead)