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Marlow Briggs EP4: Marlow Briggs and the Pipes of Doom

By Shamus
on Wednesday Aug 6, 2014
Filed under:
Spoiler Warning


Link (YouTube)

The hardest part of Marlow Briggs isn’t the combat. The hardest thing isn’t the environmental challenges. The hardest thing is explaining the game to other people.

The cutscene was perfect:

The evil bad guy is a dick to his subordinates for no reason. Then he demonstrates a power that – while impressive – doesn’t seem to have any immediate practical use. The main character stands by passively and watches the entire exchange without making any effort to engage these people he’s been chasing for the entire game. Nor does he make any effort to get within earshot, although I guess he hears them anyway? Then the bad guy uses his hoodoo powers on his men to… what? What does that glowing green puff accomplish? There isn’t any sort of transformation to indicate these men have changed. Then Marlow suddenly decides to do something, so he rips open a door and begins shouting at his foes to make sure they see him coming. Then the bad guys start, board, and load and launch their helicopters in the time it takes Marlow to run ten meters. Then Marlow makes no effort to catch his nemesis, the woman who killed him, or the girlfriend they kidnapped, but instead stops to fight TWO(!) mooks that aren’t even in his way. And then he somehow has access to a power he’s never had before, for no reason.

I realize being terrible on purpose is better than being accidentally terrible, but still. Not all of this terribleness is a joke. Some of it is just regular, garden-variety stupid.

Comments (66)

  1. Grudgeal says:

    So, a moment after this game introduces ‘professional’ henchmen who seem to have slightly higher HP and a glowy sword, it introduces… Glowy-powered henchmen who have… What DID those glow-powered henchmen have in the way of powers, anyway?

    Why simply not make that new climactic fight against multiple professionals?

    Also, really stoked that you’re continuing this game. It looks like exactly the sort of stupid nonsense to unwind with after the petering out of Skyrim.

  2. Akri says:

    Yay, more Marlow Briggs! This pleases me ^.^

  3. Warhobo says:

    Don’t forget that within roughly one minute of the helicopter flying off, the game introduces the mechanic that your scythe can extend and latch onto objects.

  4. Phrozenflame500 says:

    Sweet, more of Marlow.

    I’m probably going to pick this up to be honest. I’m a huge fan of ironically terrible plots that’s a homage to specific genres/tropes (a lot of Platinum’s games are like this) and this seems right up my alley.

  5. River Birch says:

    It only gets better from here folks.

  6. ET says:

    Insects generally don’t have proper hearts and veins like big animals do. They just sort of have a whole bunch of interconnected tubes, some of which have small muscle things attached to them, to help slosh their internal fluids around.

  7. Dragmire says:

    That turret couldn’t aim at anything that wasn’t part of the tank! Who put that there!?

  8. lucky7 says:

    This was like watching a lethal version of Wipeout.

  9. The Rocketeer says:

    You guys are mean. What you don’t understand is that the most important thing, the single most important thing about being a mook, is believing that You’re gonna be the one.

    No matter how many guys dressed exactly like you the lone hero has just shredded in a tornado of horrific, flaming, skythe violence, you’re gonna be the one to bring him to his knees. No matter how many of the helicopters ahead of you were just shot down in seconds before they could even fire a single shot, you’re gonna follow that exact same flightpath and you’re gonna be the one to blow him sky high, once and for all. You might be a guy with a katana fighting Marlow Briggs mano-a-mano, or a bandit in hide armor shaking down the Dovahkiin, or a rent-a-cop levelling a pistol at Adam Jensen. The thing that separates a true mook from all the thugs, henchmen, and roughnecks out there is the absolute empowerment of total self-confidence that a born-and-made mook can maintain in the face of every possible contra-indication.

    And all of the ore mined, harvested, refined, and packed by the Indefenestrable is used to build, maintain, and fuel the Indefenestrable. Obviously. It’s the most efficient and environmentally-friendly method of ore extraction.

  10. Hector says:

    Y’know what pisses me off in games?

    Well, not this one, because that was hilarious.

    When you spend an entire stage – or most of the game trying to avoid something, such as falling into a bottomless pit or whatever. Only to have the character deliberately do that in a cutscene and it turns out that the entire preceding portion of the game was entirely pointless and accomplished nothing.

  11. Paul Spooner says:

    “You’re either talking about a McDonald’s or…”
    A McDonald’s or what? A McDonald’s or here’s your own spaceship? McDonald’s or here’s a million bucks? I mean, what… Oh no!
    He killed it.

    Power to edit terrain is awesome! It means he can create infinite ore for them to mine! It all makes sense!

    Also, love the double-letter-box during the cutscenes.

    “Not all of this terribleness is a joke.”
    But how do you know that? I mean, it’s a joke to us. Do you mean it’s not meant as a joke? How could we tell? This is Marlow Briggs and the Poe’s Law of Doom! (feel free to use that one as an episode title)

  12. krellen says:

    So, was that deliberate trolling on part of the crew, or are the Spoilers really not familiar with what is so obviously the inspiration for this James Hong-starring evil Chinese sorcerer?

  13. Clint Olson says:

    “The evil bad guy is a dick to him subordinates for no reason.”

    “Him subordinates” should presumably be “his subordinates”/

  14. Carlos Castillo says:

    Funny that both Shamus and Rutskarn both bring up the lack of workers and extremely unsafe mining facility / vehicle.

    Shortly after you first enter the Indefenstrable 3, there is a P.A. announcement by the villain where he explicitly fires the maintenance and safety crew. He also asks that on their way out, they should attempt to make their working environments as unsafe as possible in an attempt to kill or slow down the intruder: http://youtu.be/Agt3KZOVqpg?t=14m1s

    Considering the effectiveness against Josh, it’s seems like a real viable strategy more villains need to do intentionally.

  15. nstll says:

    I like to think its called the Indefenestrable 3 because the other 2 had a fatal flaw of having a window that someone could get thrown out of which resulted in their destruction. Somehow. Kind of like the Death Star and exhaust pipes.

  16. hborrgg says:

    It looks as though you were supposed to rip the heads off those bugs, but they didn’t actually bother to animate that so Marlow Briggs just sort of pantomimes it and the bug cooperates by dying.

  17. Daemian Lucifer says:

    I surprised that none of you still recognize the evil chinese guy.I mean he was also in that famous american movie with one very famous american actor.Yes,now you recognize him.Of course,he was grandpa chen in RIPD.

    This comment dedicated to krellen.

  18. Daemian Lucifer says:

    Anyone else find it funny how Josh is the one drinking,yet everyone else is messing their words?


  19. Dragomok says:


    I haven’t even read the text description yet, but I felt the need to say that.

  20. Naota says:

    At this point I’m inclined to believe that the Indefenestrable 3 isn’t just a gigantic ore processing facility/helicopter bay and training course which scoops up tectonic plates’ worth of nonspecific “ore” to turn into fuel to grant it momentum. That would be too simple. It lacks for that certain… majesty… apparent in all things Marlow Briggs.

    No, it actually has the mines it extracts from inside of itself. Mines where mook labourers work day and night, taking extra shifts as mook guards just to make ends meet. Vast cubes of unfiltered strata from which vomit forth an unending continuum: winding ant columns of withered human figures in yellow hard hats. Every day the emaciated husks stagger home, barely sensate, to their rust-laden shanty towns; towns built – of course – on board the Indefenestrable. And every day they look up and wonder.


    • Daemian Lucifer says:

      Now I cant stop thinking of zanak from doctor who as the ultimate version of indefenestrable.

      For those too lazy to check the link,zanak is a hollow planet with engines,that wraps itself around other planets,then strips them of all useful materials,and the shrinks them to the size of a beach ball and keeps them in stasis.Yes,really.Thats why old who trumps new who.

      • Gruhunchously says:

        And it’s ostensibly run by a space pirate captain with a robot arm, a robot eye-patch, and a robot parrot on his shoulder. And he has a plank as well. It’s what happens when Douglas Adams starts script editing your show.

  21. Aaron says:

    i think spoiler warning needed this, a trip to what is really a bad game, too many good games would just ruin things

  22. Dork Angel says:

    If you listen to some of the comments he makes to his guards they are hilarious. A couple of episodes ago he say something along the lines of “Whoever wounds him can have a 50% discount on their gun rental charge”. Seriously, his mooks have to pay him for the equipment they use…

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