Tag Archive | humor

A Year in Review: Pleasantville by Night


Zombie Nerd from Pleasantville by NightA year ago today, I sent out the first invites and officially opened the doors of Pleasantville by Night to the public. I’d previously been involved with another game called Xenos (in fact, a lot of Pleasantville’s code is based off of it), but there I hadn’t been the only one working on it. There were others able to fix bugs, and to give me feedback on my content before I went live with it. Pleasantville was a solo effort, and I was nervous.

Would I be able to handle it? Was I a good enough programmer? (The answer: “Not really, but turns out it doesn’t matter”)

Ghost Hunter from Pleasantville by NightMost importantly…would people even like it? This was a world that nobody had seen but me, and here I was about to put it out there for everyone to see. I had no idea if other people would think the jokes were funny or if the content was too dark or bizarre. Would people I know start giving me strange looks, calling the whitecoats on me, or maybe performing impromptu exorcisms to cure me of what is obviously a case of demonic possession? (No demons here, aside from the ones in the game. This stuff’s all 100% me. I dunno if that’s better or worse).

Well, here we are a year later. While new user retention isn’t as good as I’d like, a large number of the people playing the game today joined a year ago, so obviously I’m, at least, OK at this.

To those of you who play the game, thank you. It is fantastically, monumentally cool to see other people enjoying something you’ve created, and without you, there wouldn’t have been a year to review. The pride I feel I guess is kind of like the pride of having a kid, but less expensive and with less pooping? (Probably about the same time commitment, though)

Duck of Hell from Pleasantville by NightFor those of you who used to play, come on back! I’ve been putting a lot of effort over the past few months to make the game a lot more accessible. This round, for example, I massively simplified the stats so it’s more clear what things actually do. Give it another go…for me? (And if you still don’t like it, please, let me know why! I can’t promise I’ll make every suggested change, but if it’s a good idea, I probably will).

To those of you who don’t play, give it a try! (http://www.pleasantvillebynight.com) It’s free, the community is friendly, and it has zombie nerds, werehippies and Beelzebros! What more could you possibly want?

Some numbers, because everyone loves statistics. Since February 15, 2012:

    • 217 user accounts have been created.
    • We’ve had 7 complete rounds, and we’re now on the 8th. The shortest (the first) lasted less than two weeks. The longest (the 7th) lasted almost three months!
      • 4 Beelzebro Wins
      • 2 Inquisition Wins
      • 1 Cthulhooligan Win
      • 0 Weirdfellows Wins
    • Besides the original content, I’ve added:
      • More than 60 creatures
      • Almost 200 items
        • 11 of those items were donator-reward Items of the Month. 2 of those actually came out on the first of the month. Obviously there’s still room for improvement.
      • 6 areas

Classy Skeleton from Pleasantville by NightSo, in the end, tl;dr as the kids say, thank you for playing Pleasantville by Night, or at least putting up with me talking about it. It’s been a great year, and I’ve got some good things in store for next year. They say the first year of running a browser-based massively multiplayer team-focused role-playing game is the hardest, right? (Please someone tell me they say that, I don’t know if I have the strength to keep going otherwise! This thing is horrible…I’m going gray!)

If you’ve made it this far, thanks for putting up with my rambling. Much love to all y’all,

Taylor

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The Legend of Halloween Tim


Everyone knows about Halloween, but not everyone knows why we celebrate Halloween. Well kids, gather round, because i’m about to tell you.

Many years ago, nobody celebrated Halloween. October 31st was just a regular day like any other. However, an evil wizard had been up to evil tricks and opened a portal to a terrifying nightmare dimension and monsters poured in and started attacking and eating people.

The people went to the king and begged for him to send his soldiers to protect them, but the king was a selfish man and just locked up his gates and stationed his soldiers around the castle to keep both monsters and commoners out.

There was despair and helplessness, and the people considered selling their soul to the Devil for protection, and they were just about to sign the contract when…

A man stepped forward…a man who we to this day know as “Halloween Tim.”

Halloween Tim was, to all appearances, an ordinary man, but he held within his chest a pure heart and a powerful will. He kicked the Devil in the face, then tore up the contract and ate it. His stomach absorbed the mystical power that the contract was infused with, and he became more powerful than any man before or since. He gathered up a militia and led the people across the country, slaying the monsters and restoring hope and joy to the land.

His campaign led him to the evil wizard’s tower itself. Here, Halloween Tim left his followers outside, and went in to fight the wizard one-on-one. Nobody knows for sure what happened inside the tower, but it is known that Tim was victorious, and was able to close the portal.

After that, Tim led his people to the gates of the king’s castle. The king wanted to make him a Duke for his services, but instead the people overthrew the king and established a democracy. Halloween Tim was elected the first president and served 34 terms, ruling fairly until the day he died.

Today, the legend of Halloween Tim lives on. Every group of friends or family democratically elects one person to be “Halloween Tim” that year and that person gets to judge their costumes and hand out candy and prizes.

It’s symbolic, you see, of Tim handing out violence and justice to the monsters that attacked his land.

 

If you liked this story, you might also like my horror/humor game, Pleasantville by Night.

The People’s Glorious Revolutionary Text Adventure Game


Sure, there’s only five of you against a world full of reactionaries, but you have Revolutionary Spirit! You can’t possibly fail. Nothing can stand in your way! Now if only you could find your Revolutionary To-Do List…

I wrote this a while ago, and I kept telling myself I’d eventually go back and fix some of the (minor) problems with it. I guess I probably never will, so here it is as is.

It’s an “Interaction Fiction” about a guy named Karl who’s the leader of a ragtag group of Revolutionaries (never forget the capital “R”!) trying to take over the town of Freedonia. As you hopefully can see from the image this isn’t a serious political commentary (I hadn’t even read The Communist Manifesto when I wrote it). If you are offended by it, please turn off your computer immediately because the Internet is probably not a safe place for you to be.

I entered it into a contest and won a $25 Amazon gift card, making this the first (and so far only) thing I’ve written that I’ve ever been paid for. There is no justice in this world.

If you’re interested in playing it, you can do so in-browser. If you don’t know how to play, just type “help.” You don’t have to play through it all at once, either, you can type “save” at the prompt to save your game and it’ll give you a URL you can use to reload it.

I recommend you download and listen to the Revolutionary Soundtrack while playing.

If you’ve played IF before and have an interpreter program, you can download the game file. If you don’t know what that means, just ignore it and don’t worry about it.

Good luck, comrades.

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