"Don't you think it's weird how so many awards these days look like rough crystal formations freshly carved from the rock? Oh I guess you wouldn't know because YOU DON'T WIN AWARDS"
"Art is only as good as the culture that surrounds it. A game could give the most extraordinary emotional experience in the entirety of human culture and bring tears to the eyes of a jaded war veteran with no eyes, but it's all for naught if it's not surrounded by self-important bearded tossers who read too much into things for a living, and since I'm one of gaming culture's Alpha self-important bearded tossers..."
The British-born and Australia-residing Ben "Yahtzee" Croshaw is perhaps best known for Zero Punctuation
. But he does have a bit more on his conscience internet-wise. Besides being a video game critic, Yahtzee also has experience in the field of writing and video game designing. Most of this work (and a bit more) can be accessed through his personal site: Fully Ramblomatic.com
Another recent real-world project of his was opening a bar with four friends known as the Mana Bar
, a place where people can drink and play games. After initial success in Brisbane, Mana Bar Melbourne had its grand opening on July 16, 2011, a success that saw a line to get in that ran around the block.
Yahtzee also makes his own games, mostly adventure games. They include the Chzo Mythos
, Adventures in the Galaxy of Fantabulous Wonderment
, Twelve Thirteen
, and the Mythos' Gaiden Game
, The Art of Theft
, among others. All of these can be found at Yahtzee's personal site/blog, Fully Ramblomatic.com
He has also written a novel, Mogworld
, released by Dark Horse Books
in August 2010. It is not a comic/graphic novel, as one might expect coming from Dark Horse, but a "proper wordy thinky brainy book
" and "an idea I've been kicking around ever since those dark, unproductive three months I spent playing World of Warcraft. It's a bit of a cynical take on MMOs and the standard Tolkienesque 'fantasy' setting.
" More info can be found here
Croshaw's second novel, Jam
, was released in October 2012. In his words, the book is "about an apocalypse. With jam in it
Not to be confused with the board game Yahtzee
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Early, incomplete and ultimately disowned work
- The Arthur Yahtzee Trilogy - A series of Adventure Games which features Arthur Yahtzee, a sort of a Life Embellished character of Yahtzee himself. The trilogy spans over the episodes Friday: Death to Arthur Yahtzee, Saturday: Arthur's Odyssey and Yesterday: The D-Gate, in which Yahtzee respectively fights mutants and time travelers and causes the destruction of The Multiverse in order to defeat the Big Bad.
- Yahtzee Takes On The World - A webcomic which features the same Arthur Yahtzee as the main character, this time as a wannabe Evil Genius who struggles against governments and a Mirror Universe to Take Over the World together with his loyal crew. The comic ended with Arthur Yahtzee and his team accidentally causing The End of the World as We Know It, and forcing humanity and themselves to abandon Earth.
- The Rob Blanc Trilogy - The first games Yahtzee made in the Adventure Games Studio engine. The player takes control over everyman Rob Blanc, who finds himself randomly appointed Defender of the Universe by the so-called High Ones. The series consists of Better Days of a Defender of the Universe, Planet of the Pasteurised Pestilence and The Temporal Terrorists. The games are essentially a tribute to Sierra's classic Adventure Games such as Space Quest. The series was positively received in the AGS community, which caused Yahtzee to develop a case of Small Name, Big Ego. Eventually he ended up being in bad standing with the community and he then choose to abandon it.
- The Adventures Of Angular Mike - A rather surrealistic webcomic which, beside the titular character, features a talking drawer, The Beatles and an invisible hentai girl amongst others. Ended up as an Orphaned Series.
- Cowboy Comics - A series of cheap western-book-covers-cut-outs with added speech bubbles. Also the only part of Yahtzee's old work he himself considers "alright".
- Chris and Trilby - A webcomic featuring the master thief Trilby and the dimwitted Chris Quinn on wacky and "completely heterosexual" adventures. Also an Orphaned Series.
- Poseidon 12 - An experiment with the AGS engine. It revolved around making The Sims-esque game on a space station. It apparently takes places After the End in the same universe as YTOTW. It never got out of beta, and is absent from the game page on Fully Ramblomatic, which makes it an Orphaned Game. It is, however, still quite playable if a bit unpolished, and it can be still found on the Fully Ramblomatic Forums here.
- Reality On The Norm - A collaborative community project, involving creating adventure games set in a Shared Universe: a quirky City of Adventure. Croshaw himself created the first game to be set in the universe, Lunchtime of the Damned, but has since then only contributed one additional game, The Sorceror's Appraisal.
- Game Damage - A television show in the making featuring Yahtzee as one of the hosts. The show's cast includes Yahtzee, Matt and Yug (the latter two the co-owners of australiangamer.com) commenting on various elements of the gaming world, including reviews and discussion of upcoming games. The show also features rant sections done by each of the hosts and sketch comedy influenced by the gaming community (such as Master Chief walking around a mall or the design team of Duke Nukem Forever sitting around bashing their heads against walls). Was ultimately not picked up for broadcast, and can considered dead.
- The Trials of Odysseus Kent - An Adventure Game which Yahtzee released together with a formal apology to the AGS community. The game was inspired by The Secret Of Monkey Island, and features Odysseus Kent, a weird white skinned boy who searches for treasure in a provincial town where time never passes.
- Adventures in the Galaxy of Fantabulous Wonderment - A hybrid between an Adventure Game and an Economic Simulation Game with elements of a Wide Open Sandbox. And a good chunk of the gameplay consists of beaming down legions of Red Shirts on planets for them to meet a horrible and entertaining demise. Fun!
- Chzo Mythos - A series that started with the slasher inspired 5 Days A Stranger, and its Recycled In Space sequel 7 Days A Skeptic. The third game, Trilby's Notes, added in a larger plot with a Eldritch Abomination and an evil cult, which was resolved in the final game, 6 Days A Sacrifice. It has its own article for those wishing to learn more.
- Twelve Thirteen - Another experiment with the AGS engine. This one revolved around creating a platformer á la Flashback, and it turned out better. Also has its own article.
- Zero Punctuation - Started out as a couple of experimental video reviews, but it caught attention fast and was soon after picked up by The Escapist and became a permanent weekly serial. It was Yahtzee's ticket to mainstream fame and remains his most famous and discussed piece of work. Also has its own article.
- Trilby: The Art of Theft - A Gaiden Game to Chzo Mythos based on the code from Twelve-Thirteen. It evolves around Trilby traveling to the USA to steal from the rich and famous over there; he does, however, quickly run into trouble. Has its own article.
- Mogworld - A novel published in collaboration with Dark Horse Comics. It tells the tale of Jim, a student mage who has been resurrected in undead form after being dead for sixty years by a "rogue necromancer", and now he wants nothing more than to die again, which is not an easy task since a weird plague that causes immortality has infected a lot of people in the country, including himself. Unbeknownst to Jim, this is because he is actually a NPC in a popular MMORPG.
- The novel was inspired by three months of playing World of Warcraft, as stated in this promo, where he says "I got the idea after I stopped playing World of Warcraft, because, for some reason, I had a lot of free time then."
- Hilariously, in his review of Age of Conan he mentions that one of his biggest problems with MMORPGs is "I hate when I look back at my time with a MMORPG and realized that I've just flushed away months of my life that I could have spent writing a best-selling book or raising a child or pounding nails into my face."
- Poacher - A Metroidvania freeware game made in Game Maker. The player takes on the role of Derek Badger, a simpleminded and stoic poacher from Yorkshire who ends up underground one foggy evening, and by unwittingly helping a spirit he gets entangled in an old war. The trailer can be viewed here and the game can be downloaded here.
- Lets Drown Out- In March 2012, Yahtzee started a series of Let's Plays with his friend (the Nick Frost to his Simon Pegg) Gabriel, featuring games from their collective childhoods on his YouTube channel. Yahtzee and Gabriel alternate LP duties each game, with Yahtzee starting it off with Fantasy World Dizzy. Prior to the Flashback video, they were pre-recorded and consisted of retro adventure games. Starting with Quake 2, they were labeled as "Let's Drown Out", which starts as a standard Let's Play of a game that's uninteresting to look at before they get bored talking about the game and instead talk podcast-style topics, which is what some of their past videos turned into anyway. The games drowned out tend to be older games that haven't aged well more often than not, but they do sometimes play games they like played in such a way to make it boring to watch. LPs may contain crude humor.
- Jam - A post-apocalyptic novel, that follows a small group of survivors in a world where the remains of civilization has been covered in a weird, red, sticky substance that smells distinctly of strawberries.
- Jim And Yahtzees Rhymedown Spectacular - Another series for The Escapist where he and Jim Sterling (of the Jimquisition) read poetry they wrote about video games.
- Uncivil War - The newest show from the Escapist, featuring Yahtzee and Jim Sterling going head-to-head in unconventional game challenges.
Work in progress