|YMMV • Radar • Quotes • (Funny • Heartwarming • Awesome) • Fridge • Characters • Fanfic Recs • Nightmare Fuel • Shout Out • Plot • Tear Jerker • Headscratchers • Trivia • WMG • Recap • Ho Yay • Image Links • Memes • Haiku • Laconic|
A 1996 FMV adventure game developed by Take-Two Interactive.
The game is set in New York City in the Cyberpunk-ish future of 2040 and is centered around the investigation of a serial killer known as the "Ripper", due to him having a similar MO to the original Jack the Ripper. The player controls Jake Quinlan, a reporter investigating the killings who periodically receives messages from the Ripper himself. The case turns personal when Quinlan's girlfriend Catherine Powell is attacked by the Ripper for getting too close. Unexpectedly, she survives but falls into a deep coma. It is up to Quinlan to discover the Ripper's identity, even if it means butting heads with Cowboy Cop Detective Vincent Magnotta.
This game is mostly notable for two things: first, the sheer amount of Hollywood actors involved in this game. The list is a sight to behold: Christopher Walken, Scott Cohen, Burgess Meredith, Karen Allen, John Rhys-Davies, Jimmie Walker, David Patrick Kelly, and Paul Giamatti. Second, the Let's Play / MS Ting of the game done by The Spoony Experiment found here. Other than that, it's mostly yet another medicore 90's FMV adventure game posing itself as an "interactive movie". Sadly, it has nothing to do with Rupert Giles or a gun that shoots sawblades, or it might have been good.
This game contains examples of:
- Absurdly Sharp Blade: This is what most people assume happened to the victims, even though it turns out they all exploded from the inside and an exploded person should not look the same as someone gutted like the catch of the day.
- All-Star Cast: Christopher Walken, Burgess Meredith, Karen Allen, and John Rhys-Davies all get top billing. Paul Giamatti is also in this, but this was back when he was an unknown NYC actor.
- Ax Crazy: Falconetti and Magnotta
- Beneath Suspicion: It's hard to get more beneath suspicion than being in a coma! (A coma with brain activity that spikes whenever the Ripper kills, hmmm...)
- Badass Boast: "The wheels of justice may grind slowly, but they're movin', they're movin'. You get yourself caught in those wheels, Quinlan, you're in for a lotta pain."
- Brown Note: Apparently in her spare time, Dr. Burton records the mental "death resonances" of monkeys she's tortured to death in cyberspace and sells them on the black market, for who knows what purpose.
- Cowboy Cop: Magnotta and how. Somewhat justified in that it's revealed that policemen have become more like bounty hunters.
- He's cited as a 'typical New Breed cop,' but apparently one who has a bad reputation even among them.
- Digital Avatar
- Dirty Cop: Magnotta. He's not explicitly on the take, per se, but he's about as unethical as you can possibly get, seems more interested in covering up the Ripper case than actually solving it, and is one of the possible suspects.
- Dr. Jerk: Claire Burton
- Everyone Went to School Together: The three prime suspects all used to be in the same hacker gang before growing up and going their separate ways.
- Evil Versus Evil: Dirty Cop Vincent Magnotta versus the Ax Crazy Joey Falconetti
- Extreme Graphical Representation
Spoony: In the future, you won't just enter in a text web address, you'll be forced to wander around the hellish virtual landscape of MORDOR!
- Fake Brit: The fake Cockney accents from Falconetti's recording of their last session in Whitechapel are particularly painful.
- Best shown in the mangled pronounciation of "Spitalfields" (Spit-al-fields) as Spy-del-fields.
- Fake Difficulty: Some of the puzzles aren't that difficult, but other factors make them much harder to solve, such as limited controls or a lack of a frame of reference
- Fridge Logic: Hamilton Wofford's cyberspace-doppleganger is called an Artificial Intelligence, yet it fails to recognise that Quinlan isn't his brother Covington. Particularly baffling, as Quinlan even says he's not.
- Game Over Man: Losing the final shoot-out sequence switches the game's perspective to Ripper. We don't see his/her face, only a monitor showing Quinlan's dead body.
- Genius Cripple: Soap Beatty, played by Jimmie Walker
- Guide Dang It: Some of the more difficult puzzles
- It's a Small Net After All: As Spoony highlights, the Internet in this game seems to consist only of a dozen websites.
- Hey, It's That Guy!: Did you see the cast list above?
- Jack the Ripoff
- Karma Houdini: It's implied that in what's thought to be the true ending, Magnotta, Falconetti, and Burton all get away with their various misdeeds
- Knife Nut: Falconetti loves his knives, and regularly practices throwing them.
- Mad Doctor / Mad Scientist: Burton
- Money, Dear Boy: The most probable motivation behind the actors in this game. Particularly sad in Burgess Meredith's case, since this was his last role before he died.
- Moon Logic Puzzle: The final puzzle of the game has you input a sequence of Tarot cards to receive the anti-Ripper weapon with no apparent clue to the correct sequence. However, during the puzzle "Don't Fear The Reaper" starts playing. You're inclined to ignore it since it's the game's theme song and this is the endgame...until you realize that the key to the sequence is the song's lyrics ("'Seasons don't fear the Reaper/Nor do the wind, the Sun and the Rain..."). While it's simple in retrospect, you're likely to get stuck since you're not expecting the sudden use of Painting the Fourth Wall.
- Multiple Endings: Curiously enough, the identity of the Ripper is actually randomized at some point of the game, with some elements changing accordingly. Disappointingly however, the endings are mostly the same regardless of the culprit. It can be inferred that only one of them is the "true" ending, due to the way it's differently handled than the rest (and that that one person was the only one with a specific grudge against all the victims) but, again, unlocking that ending is randomized. It's likely the others were just thrown in at the last moment.
- Nice Hat: Magnotta can rock a porkpie like no other
- One-Scene Wonder: John Rhys-Davies shows that in one scene he can out-perform anyone else in the game, playing an Evilly Affable mobster who has vital information but holds Quinlan over a barrel by threatening to expose a falsified story his editor made some years ago.
- And yet he's also inexplicably drowned out by the soundtrack for most of the conversation, something that isn't really a problem anywhere else in the game.
- And he also inexplicably has a fondness for using the f-word in a very...uncomfortable connotation.
- Only Smart People May Pass: The majority of the puzzles that make up the "hacking" minigames are either puzzles, or, bizarrely, first-person rail shooter segments.
- Oral Fixation Fixation: Walken's character is chomping on a cigar in almost every scene he's in. Literally. Spoony explicitly points out "oral fixation" and adds a "NOM!" every time Walken chomps away at the cigar.
- Police Brutality: Detective Vincent Magnotta has been known to beat confessions out of people
- Rabid Cop: Magnotta
- Retired Monster: Falconetti
- Solve the Soup Cans: Many, but one of the worst must be the set up in Catherine's apartment which involves crystals that must be put in a certain order in a grid that fires a laser at a book. You're only given a very vague idea of where to put crystals on a very specific grid to create a constellation, and the payoff is ultimately something Catherine could have just left you in a note: her password. Just to make it worse, the puzzle centers around the constellations of the horoscope, and the password is Horoscope, meaning that solving the puzzle means you have to already figure out that Catherine was interested in horoscopes, despite that information alone being enough to make a reasonable guess at the password.
- Another infamously terrifying puzzle, one whose mere screenshot is used as a reference to how tough the puzzles in an adventure game could be, is the circuit board rewiring puzzle. It looks about as complex as learning how to solder chips in yourself without getting anything wrong would be in real life; fortunately, abstracting out some of the codes and what-not can make it easier.
- Real Song Theme Tune: "Don't Fear The Reaper" by Blue Oyster Cult. The song's lyrics are the key to the final puzzle.
- Unexpected Gameplay Change: The several rail shooter sections. Yeah, in an adventure game.
- And Spoony learns the hard way that they too fall under Guide Dang It; in one of them, it's not enough to shoot the pop-up targets once, but to shoot them as many times as possible in order to get the qualifying score, even though the game fails to tell you that little detail.
- Wounded Gazelle Gambit: Magnotta gets away with beating up Quinlan while interrogating him by slicing his forehead with a huge knife so he can claim self defense if Quinlan reports this. I mean, would anyone believe the truth?
- Also qualifies as an inverse of the Police Brutality Gambit
- And, as Spoony points out, it wouldn't have worked anyway.
Magnotta: Self defence, man. I mean, why'd you hit me, Quinlan? What are you, stupid? Hitting a cop?!
Spoony: With a knife, while handcuffed.
- Your Mind Makes It Real: Forget hacking into the human mind to give you an aneurism or whatever: the Ripper can hack your brain in such a way your body's internal pressure builds until you explode from the inside.