I’ve never really used games as an avenue for dealing with anger or any latent homicidal urges that I may have had: it’s why open-world games (playpits for sociopathy that they tend to market themselves as) have never really appealed to me, with the activities on show tending to cater to those who may find the manipulation of things that represent sentient creatures appealing. 1 Ton is a game that revels in the treatment of digital people as means in a manner that would make Kant turn in his grave enough to serve as a reasonable source of power.
The above GIF shows all that needs to be known about 1 Ton: drop the weight on the lever, generate a person; interact with these people in the only way that a weight easily raised to a great height knows: by falling on them. If one is successful in hitting a person with the weight, a deeply unsatisfying lack of animation ensues, with the person being turned into a blood stain on the floor within one frame. Following on from the lack of technical finesse displayed in $100,000 Pyramid, I’m somewhat numbed to the sense of being shocked and appalled that should accompany any slight technical fault in the mind of any who plays and engages with video games online, but in the case of 1 Ton, I think my lack of interest in this is that it’s crass: it’s not even dressing up the bloodlust in something that may be perceived as ‘higher.’
Alright, yes, I’ve soundly entered ‘pretentious wank’ territory here and I apologise profusely: I’m not opposed to violence in media, not even if it’s senseless. The same goes for any vice, whether it’s shagging or drug use: media should be able to portray anything, and its portrayal of that thing judged later. In the case of 1 Ton, however, it’s gratuitous and boring. Even if we do view this as an avant-garde painting game, all we can do it paint one line in one colour, and we will end up with an untidy red line across the middle of the screen. The composition of the scene doesn’t even lend itself well to an art simulator: if eschews the rule of thirds with such wild aplomb that it borders on the more egregious of dismissals of artistic orthodoxy.
The above was complete and utter wank and I’m acutely aware of it. I didn’t want to be seen to be dismissive of a game that was clearly a labour of something (if not love) for someone, and released as freeware on the Internet. I have to find value in anything that is free, if only to encourage others to be so generous in the future. Remember shareware? Remember getting a quarter of a game for free? That’s “episodic content” now.
Download link (12kB)