"To make it in Nuevos Aires, one needs nerves of silk and the filthiest of hands. Mix together a batch of espionage, some high-speed car chases, fire-spewing assassins, and you've got one oven that'll never bake cookies again. We provide the pliers and you bring the moxie."Citizen Abel: Gravity Bone
— Author's description of the game.
is a Freeware Spy Fiction
First Person short story by Brendon Chung
, set in the nondescript South American locale of Nuevos Aires. You play Citizen Abel, a secret agent who embarks on missions that involve performing peculiar or outright bizarre actions, such as secretly feeding an insect to a man at a party, or taking covert photographs of black birds. Your actions are only ever explained at the end of a successful mission by a Motor Mouth robotic voice
- and even then you never know who your "clients" are, or what their greater purpose is.
Several years later, creator Brendon Chung was asked by Idle Thumbs to make a sequel, and after elaborating on a pre-existing prototype for Gravity Bone
, Thirty Flights of Loving
was released, which comes bundled with Gravity Bone
in places such as the game's Steam
Download it for Windows here
- Awesomeness Meter: Parodied. In addition to your base mission payment, you're also rewarded bonus cash for a number of strange reasons, such as a "$100 Full Gas Tank bonus" in a mission with no vehicles.
- And the less said about the "Phantom Pants bonus", the better.
- The Bad Guy Wins: After the Evil Redhead shoots Abel, she steals his camera, and is implied to get away with it too.
- Blown Across the Room/Slow Motion Fall: Both happen at the end of the game when the Evil Redhead shoots and fatally wounds Abel and steals his camera.
- Chase Scene: The second half of mission 2.
- Canis Latinicus: The Manitoba Beast Bug has the Latin name of surprisibus surprisibus.
- Chekhov's Gunman: The red-headed woman in the second mission just seems like another NPC... until she is revealed as the Big Bad when she murders Abel.
- Deconstruction Game: Of linear action games, at least judging by how the between-mission cutscene and flavour text build it up as having multiple missions and a reason for earning cash.
- Determinator: Abel thinks nothing of embarking on a high-speed foot chase after being shot three times.
- Downer Ending: Abel is killed by the Evil Redhead in mission 2.
- Evil Redhead: Your target in mission 1 is the only red-headed man at the party, and in mission 2, the redheaded woman shoots you, revealing herself as the Big Bad.
- The Faceless: Abel.
- First-Person Shooter: Well... it's hard to call it a shooter. The only substance you actually fire out of a handheld device throughout the whole thing is the pressurized freon, and even that's only for freezing padlocks...
- The Hero Dies: Abel himself at the end.
- Ice Breaker: You break locks by freezing them and hitting them with a hammer.
- Mind Screw: The whole appeal of both Gravity Bone and its spiritual successor is that you, the player, is only given vague hints at the storyline being told entirely through the environment and events, rather than dialogue. Word of God says that he doesn't expect absolutely everyone to piece everything together the first time around.
- Mission Briefing: Which, for some reason, always takes place in the Furnace Room of whatever building you start in.
- Mood Dissonance: So, it's mission 2, and Abel has just been shot by the Evil Redhead, and she steals your camera as you lie dying. Why, then, is this action accompanied by a slide-whistle?
- My Life Flashed Before My Eyes: Happens to Abel while he falls to his death.
- No Name Given: Everyone you meet. Your contacts and targets in missions are only referred to by physical attributes, such as "the man with red hair".
- No OSHA Compliance: The Furnace Rooms in the missions become increasingly filled with crushing pistons.
- There are a good handful of convenient walkways with which to walk on ACTIVE TRAIN TRACKS.
- Romance Novel: Subverted. A woman in mission 2 reads a book entitled "Passionless Moments".
- Scoring Points: The mission payments are essentially just points, especially since you can't spend any of it.
- Shout-Out: So, the main character's name is supposedly "Abel", the in-universe nickname for him is Citizen Abel, so that must mean there should be another person somewhere called... oh, I'm so dumb...
- Stupidity Is the Only Option: You have to chase after the woman, even though she's armed with a gun, and you're not. The chase ends predictably. Although this could be seen as a case of Determinator instead.
- Synthetic Voice Actor: Is that Microsoft Mary giving you your mission details?
- Tuxedo and Martini: Abel is presented like this.
- The Unintelligible: Everyone you meet speaks using the exact same "wah wah" sound used by grown-ups in the Peanuts cartoon.
- Twist Ending: Abel is shot and killed at the end of mission 2, prematurely ending the game.
- Wacky Sound Effect: Clicking the mouse button to get a better view of your mission briefing card is followed by you lifting the card to your face with a slide whistle sound. The red-haired woman stealing your camera after having shot you in mission 2 also evokes such a sound effect.
- Weaponized Camera: Implied. In mission 2, the five birds fall off their perches and explode when they are photographed.