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Video Game / GUNNER

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Of guns and cops...

Gunner is a short freeware game by Jake Clover, which can be downloaded here. It is very short, only taking place within a dozen screens. You appear to be a criminal of some kind with a gun and your goal is to move past the policemen out to get you. You can also crawl on the ground, hide in the local bushes and pick up glowing diamonds, though none of it matters. The game is notable for the extremely overblown gunshot and explosion sounds and sprites used, so be sure to turn the volume down if you decide to play it.


This game provides examples of the following tropes:

  • Bloodless Carnage: Like in many of the creator’s other games, there is no blood at all.
  • Bottomless Magazines: You never run out of bullets or have to reload.
  • Collision Damage: Walking into the policemen kills you.
  • Crate Expectations: This game uses lockers instead, which can be destroyed in one shot and will sometimes contain diamonds.
  • Elevator Action Sequence: Averted. The player character boards an elevator almost out of nowhere to get to the final stage. It takes about ten seconds to descend and during that time you can't do anything. You would expect there to be an action sequence, but there isn't one.
  • Deconstruction Game: Apparently, it’s one for most modern shooters.
  • Denial of Diagonal Attack: Subverted. The main character can only shoot in front of him, but the bullet is so ridiculously large that it can hit the enemies standing to the side of him.
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  • Drill Sergeant Nasty: The bald-headed man, who appears on every screen and shouts things at you like “You will acknowledge my authority!”. His head appears as a boss of sorts, and once he dies, there are no more enemies and the music becomes almost serene in its nature. The “Very good.” Voice remains, though.
  • Follow the Money: There are some very shiny sapphires/blue diamonds scattered inside lockers and on some screen, but they’re not counted and there is no real benefit to picking them up.
  • Friendly Fireproof: Cars blowing up will kill the policemen but leave you unharmed.
  • Green Hill Zone: The game begins in the field amongst some nice bushes and continues into a more urban setting.
  • Instant Death Bullet: Played with. One bullet is typically enough to kill, but the death is never instant: the policemen will always fold in half and crawl on the ground for a few seconds before finally dying.
  • Last Breath Bullet: Some policemen will not die after the first shot but instead stay wounded and can crawl on the ground and fire back at you.
  • Made of Explodium: The cars will blow up after getting shot, and in one screen it’s possible to start a chain reaction of explosions. The lockers can blow up as well, and the boss head explodes at death.
  • No Ending: There is some voiceover for the ending, but it’s largely incomprehensible.
  • One Hitpoint Wonder: The protagonist is this and the policemen also tend to be this, with some exceptions (see Last Breath Bullet above).
  • Optional Stealth: It is technically possible to crawl by some policemen if the arrow to get to the next level is already there.
  • Stylistic Suck: In the comments for the game, Jake Clover admitted that he could have drawn it better, but decided it served the message well enough as it was.
  • Wrap Around: Both you and the policemen will end up on the other side of the screen if you keep walking in one direction.
  • Zero-Effort Boss: the sergeant’s head (or whatever) is this, intentionally. You just shoot at it once and it explodes. Of course, it will automatically kill you if you wait too long, too.