Friday, 26 June 2015

(SATIRE) Indie game developer's curse on all gamers has limited impact on gamer mortality rate

Trigger Warning: The 50 post anniversary cake is a lie

A Belgian indie games developer who cursed all gamers to die in agony has admitted that their malediction had little if any impact on gamer mortality rates.

The curse which rippled unnoticed across the nethersphere and was later reproduced in a two-part tweet on Twitter reads: “Goodbye, gamers! May you die in the same agony that you caused to thousands of defenceless virtual creatures. FUCK GAMERS! FUCK THE GAME INDUSTRY! DIE! DIE!DIE! And rot in hell!”

It is believed to be a reaction by the developer - Tale of Tales - to disappointing sales of their game Sunset, in which the player took on the role of a housemaid to a south American dictator during the 1970s.

I have to admit when I read the incantation my blood ran cold...” said avid gamer and occasional shitposter, Niles.

...I've lost count of the hours I've spent mocking Tale of Tales' ludicrous 1970s housework simulator. You just never expect retaliation from small developers. Tale of Tales went full-Neeson on gamers sentencing us all to die in horrifying but unspecified ways.”

Gamer, Colin Loppin, said

I bought Stars Wars Battlefront II because it afforded me an opportunity to shoot Ewoks in the face after a stressful day of serving customers at Yoghurt Cottage. It also helped to dull the humiliation of being given a name reminiscent of a waistcoat-wearing bunny rabbit from a Beatrix Potter story.

Now I've been told that I am to die in the same agony that I inflicted on the cannibalistic, C3P0-worshipping, teddy bear sadists from the forest moon of Endor. That wasn't in the licensing agreement I signed when I installed the game.”

Other gamers summoned the motivation to briefly leave their basements and seek protection:

I went to the new age store on Dimer Avenue and made myself a protective suit from dream catchers...” said Kenneth Bell.

...At dinner that evening, my Wicca-loving Tumblrette of a younger sister told me that curses were much smaller than dreams and would easily fit through the holes in the netting of the catchers. At this point my father silently got up from the table and a few minutes later we heard his car reversing out of the driveway. He has yet to return home.”

Despite the sense of foreboding and dread that followed the announcement of the curse on social media, the actual impact was barely felt. Journalist, Jeremy Fisher, from the popular gaming review website 'Frogger Went A Courting' equated the indie developer's feeble stab at black magic with the release of Duke Nukem Forever as “a lot of build up to nothing. It was certainly nowhere near the kind of curse you get from AAA developers. They employ whole teams of people whose job is to rain magical beat downs on anyone who stands in the way of a project."

"And once you're cursed you stay cursed,” Fisher added, before jumping off his lilly-pad and disappearing beneath the murky green waters of his pond.

The mood among gamers who awoke on the 23rd June was celebratory with the hashtag #ImAlive quickly rising into the trending topics on Twitter, while the Pearl Jam song - Alive briefly re-entered the Top 10 international downloads on iTunes.

Did ToT cancel the curse or something?” queried Twitter fuckwit, @backwards7, who subsequently admitted that he had sold all of his possessions on Ebay to pay for a lavish Viking funeral.

I guess something went wrong with the curse,” said @Cabbage-Kin12.

Gamers reported that they had experienced very little of the agony foretold by Tale of Tales:

I awoke with the headache that I usually get after drinking 24 cans of store-brand cola before passing out on the couch in front of the Halo menu screen.” said console jockey and insufferable Microsoft fanboy, Roger Puddick.

A statement allegedly from Tales of Tales read:

Our desire to curse a wider audience was not motivated by feelings of rejection but by a sense of moral obligation to scorch the earth clean of gamers and then salt the ground where there had once stood a thriving industry. We felt we had to try and curse as many people as possible: To rid the world of gamers not in a targeted, methodical point-and-click fashion, but as part of an unfettered rampage of dark magic and battle sorcery - A bit like that guy in Hatred, only with a wand, a top hat and a beautiful assistant replacing the guns and the chainsaws.

The drying up of funding in Belgium for retaliatory witchcraft meant that we were left with no option other than to source inferior newts from disreputable internet dealers and we feel this may have weakened the potency of our spell.

We also spent a lot of money renting Leigh Alexander's megaphone so that our curse was heard by the widest possible audience but it didn't help one bit.

We hate the idea of viewing gamers as numbers and prefer to regard them as an amorphous mass whose collective indifference to our carpet-unrolling and box-opening physics algorithms has doomed them to fates worse than death.

So far only four gamers have died, all from natural causes, and in mild discomfort rather than the agony we envisaged. It's hard not to feel disappointment in the context of the encouragement we received from those three witches who we met huddled around a cauldron on desolate Scottish moorland, who promised us that we would be Thane of Cawdor and King thereafter.

"We are proud that we tried to curse all gamers. We did out best and we failed, so that's one thing we need never do again. A thirst for vengeance still burns wildly in our hearts like magical violet wildfire, but I do not think we will be resorting to using curses again. And if we do it will be on a small boutique scale.”

Gamer Darren Blackwell told MODE 5:

I will never forget the day Tale of Tales cursed me and my fellow gamers and I survived. Every day from now on is a gift to be cherished.”

Blackwell then removed a half-eaten slice of cold pizza from a box balanced atop a stack of similar boxes cluttering the surface of a coffee table, and sank into the bowed centre of a sagging settee in front of an episode of Will and Grace.

Thursday, 25 June 2015

(SATIRE) Social justice warriors retreat into works of fiction as conventional reality struggles to sustain their narratives

The narratives perpetuated by Anita Sarkeesian and other social justice warriors are now so implausible and convoluted that they can no longer be sustained in conventional reality.

This is according to a new £600,000 study conducted by The Norwich Institute of Made-Up Narrative Sciences.

Franklin Bazell – a tenured professor of Unreliable First-Person Narratives at the institute, who specialises in bogus narratives created between 1950 and 2050, told MODE 5:

While a typical social justice narrative, such as you might find on Tumblr, can survive on paper in much the same way as one of M. C. Escher's impossible drawings, lifting these narratives into the real world places them in settings where even a fractional shift in perspective to the left or the right reveals their inherent absurdity. Some of the current social justice narratives are so tenuous in their credibility that they have half lives that can be measured in factions of seconds.

A good recent example is Anita Sarkeesian's accidental inversion of Hans Christian Andersen's 'Emperor's New Clothes' fairytale, in which she admonishes the fictional grave robber and slayer of endangered species, Lara Croft, for dressing in inappropriately skimpy attire for Arctic climates. This is despite indisputable evidence that Croft probably owns more snow jackets than Anita does, and has never once flashed her cleavage at a polar bear.”

As reality becomes more and more inhospitable to Tumblr logic, social justice warriors have been sighted in increasing numbers inserting themselves into the plot-lines of prominent works of fiction where a more lax approach is often taken to logic and plausibility.

Henrietta Cloutier - a professor of Literary Migration Studies at Beaker College, Cambridge, said:

The straitjacketed social justice mindset is a hindrance to creativity, making it difficult for people who subscribe to this way of thinking to come up with compelling stories of their own. Instead the trend has been towards social justice warriors entering frictional worlds created by more talented individuals and then attempting to recalibrate these environments to their own ends with the inclusion of word-free safe spaces and the removal of problematic words. Invariably the end result of this interference is the destruction of the host text which is reduced to a kind of verbal porridge. In a sense social justice warriors are entryists in much the same way as those wasps that lay their eggs inside living caterpillars.”

This week, students studying the Ernest Hemingway novel – The Old Man and the Sea for their English Literature A Levels were instructed to ignore any appearances in the text of the Feminist Frequency mouthpiece Josh McIntosh, after he apparently took up residence in the plot-line and declared squatter's rights.

In a recent comment made on the social media website - Twitter, McIntosh accuses the novel's protagonist – an elderly fisherman named Santiago – of doxxing the marlin with whom he is engaged in an epic struggle, stating:

Marlin fishing and humility in the face of nature are the only real emotional expressions male protagonists are allowed in this story. Needless to say that's a toxic message for men.”

Another lengthy new passage in the novel, attributed to McIntosh, speculates that Santigo may be a fish-kin in denial, who is unable to accept his true piscine nature and who is therefore compelled to both fall in love with, and then kill, the marlin, which physically embodies his repressed desire to become a fish himself.

A spokesperson for the EDEXCEL Examination Board said:

Hemingway never intended Josh McIntosh's petulant musings on other-kin or Batman to form any part of his Nobel Prize Winning story. Students should ignore these passages and cross them out neatly using a ruler and a red biro. We discourage students from goading McIntosh into further outbursts by drawing crude ejaculating penises next to his additions and amendments to the text, although we won't penalize you if you do.”

According to Cloutier it is unlikely that the social justice agitator will remain in the text for long:

A person like Josh who favours florid pesudo-academic buzzwords will struggle to define himself in a world characterised by Hemingway's deliberately basic prose. It is likely that he will either leave the book of his own accord, or fall, or be pushed, into the sea where he will be consumed by fictional sharks which are much larger than normal sharks and have sharper teeth.”

Scholars of Hemingway have pointed to evidence suggesting that the novel's immune system is already preparing itself to oust interloper McIntosh, with Santiago pondering “I have never seen or heard of such a douchebag. But I must kill him,” while caressing a bloody improvised harpoon fashioned from a knife strapped to the handle of an oar.

Other notable proponents of social justice who have emigrated into works of fiction have also found themselves struggling to fit in. One prominent critic of the Gamergate movement who literally sought refuge within the pages of the Shakespearean play All's Well That Ends Well, has become the target of the bard's verbal gymnastics and is described by one character as:

A most notable coward, an infinite and endless liar, an hourly promise breaker, the owner of no one good quality.”

Meanwhile at Hogwarts, Randi Harper was witnessed bemoaning her appointment to the house of Slytherin and subsequent removal to Azkaban prison.

In a blog post she boasted to her hangers on:

Already I have learned two spells: 'Patreonous!' causes piles of money to appear in slowly diminishing sums. 'Problematicus!' summons an army of Twitter keyboard warriors and Guardian journalists. We plan to deliberately misconstrue an innocent comment made by Professor Dumbledore and us this to incite a hate mob who will demand his resignation and drink his male tears.”

According to Professor Bazell, the exodus by social justice warriors into the realm of fiction will probably be short-lived with even made-up settings unlikely to be able to support their demented narratives for more than a few weeks:

Even that Mr Men book where Mr Silly visits Mr Nonsense and it rains custard would find its internal logic tested to destruction by a run of the mill utterance from the likes of Brianna Wu. I predict, six months from now, only the most vapid and ridiculous works of fiction will be able to support social justice narratives. I'm talking books like The Da Vinci Code and the 50 Shades trilogy."

Friday, 19 June 2015

(SATIRE) We journeyed through thousands of parallel universes until we found an E3 that would issue us with a press pass

In our ongoing battle for relevance in the face of better-written gaming blogs, penned by people who know what they're talking about, MODE 5 combed through thousands of parallel universes until we found an E3 with low enough standards to issue us with a press pass.

While we were there we managed to tear ourselves away from rooftop discussions about politics in the Philippines long enough to attend two press conferences:

Depression Quest 2: Stage invasion as “unfathomably dull” franchise is unveiled before an indifferent crowd

Dismal text adventure Depression Quest will be shortly be returning to the MacBooks of Patreon-dependent hipsters at a coffee shop near you, with the game's release date timed to coincide with the death of the comedian Louis CK.

Those who pre-order will receive one of five limited edition statuettes of a glum looking hipster who will recite codes that unlock exclusive downloadable content when a cord on their back is pulled. The DLC includes eight additional forms of depression, five of which are unknown to psychiatry and were developed exclusively for the game. There is also a bonus level where your character gets to visit a Tiki bar but doesn't really enjoy the experience.

Depression Quest 2: Reign of Zandor is described by its creators as existing within the Depression Quest universe but running in parallel to the events that occurred in the original game. The story begins with your protagonist in weekly therapy sessions with their psychiatrist Dr Zandor – the enigmatic shrink from Depression Quest who refuses to elaborate on whether his approach to therapy favours a Freudian or a Jungian model.

Literally weeks in development, the game, unlike its predecessor, allows players to design their own character from scratch simply by typing a different name into the text field prior to beginning the story.

A spokesperson for the 60-person-strong development team said:

The biggest change is that in Depression Quest 2 you can literally be whoever you want, whether that's a Care Bear or an Imperial Stormtrooper. You are bound only by your imagination and the 30 character limit (although anyone who pre-orders the deluxe edition will get an extra five characters).”

The Depression Quest press conference at alternative E3 was accessed via a series of near-identical branching corridors, with the gaggle of expectant gaming hacks being guided to the press hall by doomy badly-played piano. The late-starting presentation was further delayed by stage invaders who were searching for the exit.

Journalists live-blogging the conference expressed disappointment at the in-game footage they were shown. Twitter keyboard warrior @OneTrueJoshman wrote:

This level of tedium shouldn't be considered normal. It's not an excuse to say it's expected because DEPRESSION QUEST. That's the problem.”

Another blogger tweeted:

Only a few minutes at the Depression Quest press conference and it's literally wall to wall glorification of ennui. I can barely watch, but I will anyway.”

Others were critical of the lack of progress in the gaming interface. Rob Lamb from the Financial Times said:

Judging from the obviously pre-rendered gameplay footage, Depression Quest 2 has barely advanced graphically or in terms of game play. A slightly tweaked font aside, this a clearly a 2013 text adventure. At best it's Depression Quest v1.1 as opposed to the full-fledged sequel the fans were promised.”

YouTube gaming titan, Total Biscuit, told MODE 5:

I remain troubled by the low frame rates. The PC I play games on is so powerful that it is extremely unlikely that it would recognise Depression Quest 2 as software. I will have to turn the settings right down to their lowest levels and severely under-clock the processor if I want to run this game.”

Total Biscuit added that, in the interest of professional ethics, he felt the need to disclose that he was of the same species as the developer of Depression Quest 2 and might possibly share some common ancestry if you delved far enough back into his family tree.

Occulus Rift will abide by Rule 34

Aficionados of wanton, sweat-soaked video-gaming sessions and 60 frames-per-second sex, who were hoping to bring these two interests together in a believable 3-dimensional virtual world, were cruelly cock-blocked at the eleventh hour following an announcement that the Occulus Rift VR headset would censor pornographic content.

Despite this setback MODE 5 understand that the Occulus Rift will still abide by Rule 34 of the internet, which dictates that if something exists then there will be porn of it.

Speaking from the Large Hadron Collider, internet scientist, Eugene Glover, said:

Rule 34 is as immutable as the fundamental laws of physics. Even God, if he or she exists, is subject to its tenets and must resign themselves to appearing in fan-made artwork screwing Marge Simpson from behind.”

Technology Journalist, Jason Cullen, told MODE 5 that it may only be a matter of weeks before somebody attempts to have sex with an Occulus Rift:

While from a software point of view the Occulus Rift is likely to remain a porn-free sex desert, I can say with outright certainty that, as we speak, a scattered army of disenfranchised perverts are envisioning ways they can screw the hardware.

Within a year of release your email inbox is likely to contain at least one amusingly-captioned jpeg depicting the X-ray of someone who forced an Occulus Rift into their anal cavity.”

Cullen added that images of Occulus Rift headsets liberally drizzled in male reproductive fluid, or forced into a pair of women's panties with the printed cut-out face of Hilary Clinton sellotaped to the screen, were likely to join Goatse and Tubgirl in a library of disturbing mental images that you can't un-see and which will follow you to the grave.

Sunday, 14 June 2015

(Satire) Joshanita is the top gender-neutral baby name for 2015

Trigger warning: The following article contains at least one Faith No More reference.


A hybrid of a social justice power couple's Christian names has risen to be the top gender-neutral baby name in the San Francisco bay area, displacing mainstays such as Clarence, Ethel and Marmaduke. The U.S. Department of National Vital Statistics confirmed that 'Joshanita' – a portmanteau of Joshua McIntosh and Anita Sarkeesian's names has risen from nowhere to become the moniker of choice for expectant parents in areas of the country regarded as having strong progressive leanings. A spokesperson for the department said:

There are a million tales in the naked city. As of 2015 an increasing number of these tales will belong to people whose parents have seen fit to name them Joshanita. Down the line we expect that a proportion of these individuals, upon learning the origin of their names, will engage in self-harm. Therefore we strongly recommend that money is invested in counselling and suicide prevention so that these services are well-established when this human time bomb goes off a decade or so from now.”

Proud parents, Mary and Joseph Crummer, who describe themselves as biblical other-kin told MODE 5:

Our child is a special snowflake who was miraculously conceived during the height of summer and who is destined never to melt, or to form part of the oppressive patriarchal figure of a snowman.

As responsible life teachers we sought to avoid imposing a moniker that strongly implies either a male or a female gender identity. If you type 'Joshanita' into one of those websites that tell you the meanings of different names it brings up no results whatsoever, although some sites will notify social services in your area if their software detects that you may be planning to call your child something idiotic, which is the reason why we are now on the run – well that and the massive pension fund fraud.”

It's really cute the way Joshanita pronounces the word problematic as 'probromatic'”, airquotes Mary, adding that this is currently the only word spoken by her three year old daughter.

She says it literally all the time while pointing at people and objects. To her everything is problematic, even mommy and daddy! It's adorable.”

We didn't want to impose patriarchal language archetypes on Joshanita,” says Joseph.

With the exception of the word 'problematic' we avoid speaking in her presence. We have done our best to isolate her from other forms of human speech by means of earplugs that effectively reduce all human communication to a series of baffling arm gestures,” he explains of his daughter, who has also been taught to drop to a crouched defensive position and hiss like a cornered animal upon sighting the popular videogame character Bayonetta.

We hope that in time Joshanita will develop a language that is uniquely her own and that this rare ability will not result in her being othered by less gifted children and adults,” says Mary.

Recently Joshanita has been playing at being an elephant and behaving in a manner that leads us to believe that she may be elephant other-kin,” says Joseph. “We attempted to enrol her in a vocational programme for elephants at a wildlife park in Maine but were turned down on the spurious grounds that, biologically-speaking, our daughter is not an elephant.

We now intend to sue the park for an amount that, coincidentally corresponds exactly with the multi-million dollar financial settlement that I have been instructed to pay as compensation for my part in the gross mismanagement of a series of pension funds. We have also set up Patreon and Paypal accounts that will help to raise the money necessary to protect our daughter from ivory poachers.”

Other San Francisco-based parents who have been caught up in the recent naming trend are less enamoured by the rising popularity of Joshanita:

Without exception, every kid I've met called Joshanita has been an overly-entitled little brat,” says Kindergarten teacher, Susan Hollier. “You might as well slap a label on your son or daughter that reads: 'Brace yourself because my child is a douchebag.'”

Linda Bishop is one of a number of parents who felt brow-beaten into naming her child Joshanita and who has now set up a support group for people who find themselves in similar situations:

My husband and I foolishly let it slip to our friends that we were planning to name our baby 'Larry' after my grandfather who raised me single-handedly in the wilds of Kentucky following the death of my parents.

We subsequently received threatening phone calls at all hours of the day and night accusing us of the cultural appropriation of a native American name. We have also received letters from local schools and colleges informing us that the name Larry is now regarded as triggering and that they would unable to admit our child on grounds that this might cause offence or distress to the other children, parents and staff.

Eventually, in a moment of weakness, I gave in and named my beautiful baby boy - Joshanita Briannaquinn. I hope that this innocent child, who is ignorant of the great harm I have inflicted upon him, and who gazes up at me with a combination of wonder and reverence, will one day find it in his heart to forgive me.”

Classes aimed at teaching the increasing numbers of Joshanitas fundamental life skills, such as Triggering Drills, are already springing up all over San Francisco and New York.

Instructor Stephane Bony says: “We instil in children from an early age the importance of identifying their triggers by pointing at the source of their distress and loudly and repeatedly shouting “NO!” When law enforcement arrives we encourage them to accuse the offending person or object of rape.”

Even non-progressive child care services are being forced to change long-standing practices:

For better or for worse we have been compelled to move with the times,” sighs Patricia Mackney who has run the Little Monkeys Bay Nursery for the past 27 years:

Initially we altered the words to If You're Happy And You Know It so that they went: 'If you're happy and you know it jazz your hands.' We did this to avoid triggering children who are distressed by loud noises beyond their own incessant high-volume yelling.

We have now banned the song entirely following legal advice that we could be sued for discrimination by the parents of children who are unhappy, or who cannot say with certainty whether or not they are happy.”

Meanwhile, colleges across the U.S. are developing new courses that will accommodate the emerging Joshanita demographic when they reach their late teens.

A spokesperson for a college that did not wish to be identified says: “Our aim is provide the least challenging, undemanding seven-year curriculum that money can buy. If you don't leave our college more entrenched and convinced of the inherent rightness of your wrong-headed, narrow-minded world view then we will give you an extra hour in the campus ball pit completely free of charge."

Beyond the campus and the kindergarten a generation of ordinary Americans are struggling to make sense of the rise of the Joshanitas and the social justice movement they herald.

Maria Bazell whose fading dream of being accepted as a mature student by the Pittsburgh Conservatory of Dance and Repertory becomes a little less likely every day she puts on her workplace ID badge that identifies her as Grade 2 Ball Pit Technician at the Land of Sunshine Warehouse of Soft Play, told MODE 5:

I get parents coming up to me asking me to pick out certain colours of balls from the ball pit as they are giving their kid post-traumatic stress disorder. Usually I just empty the ball pit completely. It makes it easier to clean up the urine. Seldom a day goes by without a parent of a multi-kin child calling the police because some of their multiple personalities got lost in the tube maze.

My ex-boyfriend came home from Iraq with real honest to god PTSD. Now he calls me several times a night threatening to kill me and his son. Nobody's giving me any money or so much as a good god damn because I'm being victimised.”

Carine Vetch of Bay Area Victim Solutions says:

Maria's problem is that she's from a poor, blue collar background and isn't marketing her victimhood in a way that connects with writers at Rolling Stone and The Washington Post. I would suggest that she secures a higher paid job on the fringes of academia and then flees her home for a few months to go travelling around Europe.”

Wednesday, 10 June 2015

(SATIRE) Guardian newspaper issues copyright infringement claim against ancient Mesopotamian emperor

Museums across the world are removing from display exhibits dating back to the reign of the ancient Mesopotamian ruler, Sargon of Akkad. The move comes after these archaeological discoveries were found to infringe upon trademarks owned by The Guardian newspaper. 

Tonight, following the purge, some museums were reporting a 60% reduction in the number of objects in glass cases still left on display.

Brian Coldudder - Custodian of the North Yorkshire Museum of Coal and Tin Bathtubs - told MODE 5: “Sargon of Akkad memorabilia has been at the heart of our public exhibit for well over two decades. My father curated displays of found objects dating back to reign of the great emperor, as did his father before him. I dare-say my son will follow in my footsteps.

With our Sargon of Akkad collection gone, we're down to fragments of a Roman urn that some boy scouts found in Leeds. We've got three school parties due to arrive tomorrow and nothing to show them. God only knows what we'll do if this isn't sorted out.”

Meanwhile concerns have been raised at the British Museum that a wing of the building devoted to the ancient Mesopotamian ruler, might draw the attention of the nominations committee for the Turner Prize for modern art, were it to be emptied of its contents.

Museum curator, Cecil Beaconthorpe-Grayling said:

The pretentious font of chin-stroking, BBC Culture Show arsery, that is the Turner Prize committee, will nominate our empty museum wing for their contemptuous modern art award over my perfectly-preserved mummified body. I will cut every last one of their throats with a ceremonial Phoenician elephant-gelding scythe before I allow it.”

Guardian online technology journalist, Colin Oarful, has previously written articles citing Sargon's actions in the battle of Uruk, in 2271BC, as being a key factor in delaying the release of the iPhone 5. He said that he felt compelled to bring legal action after a trademark he had registered with the help of Guardian lawyers was breached by the emperor:

The neatly-forked facial hair depicted in the armoured cast of Sargon of Akkad's face bears unmistakable similarities to a beard that I grew in 2014 and subsequently trademarked to prevent other hipsters from copying me.

I immediately flagged this breach of copyright with the executive board at The Guardian and threatened to walk out if they didn't take my complaint seriously. They don't have Glenn Greenwald or Edward Snowden on board anymore to lend them credibility, and so they had no choice other than to agree to my absurd demands.”

Susan Hoopearings - Editor of The Guardian Weekend Quinoa supplement - told MODE 5 that Oarful's claim was just one of over 9000 copyright infringements made by Sargon of Akkad, for which the paper was now seeking reparation:

Of these the most damning is Sargon's ethnic headgear which bears a strong resemblance to an urban headdress that is currently being sold in the paper for £400, or £789 for two.

In addition, the military campaigns conducted by Sargon of Akkad to subjugate the so-called 'fertile crescent' of North-East Africa and Western Asia bear striking similarities to a guided 7-day excursion in this region that is available exclusively to readers of our paper for the bargain sum of £8275 plus VAT.

We will not stand idly by while some upstart military ruler from 22BC drags the good name of The Guardian through the mud. We employ trained journalists to do that.”

Guardian reader and distant descendent of Sargon of Akkad, Graham Robb, said: “I am of course well aware that large parts of The Guardian are written exclusively by imbeciles – The same can be said of any newspaper, and I do like the Cook pull-out in the Saturday edition.”

Saturday, 6 June 2015

(SATIRE) Videogame characters bemoan the lack of racial and gender diversity in games journalism

Ethical disclosure: MODE 5 is written by a cisgendered white male shitlord who could not locate his privilege with both hands.


Characters in videogames have called for better racial and gender diversity in gaming journalism.

The outcry comes hard on the heels of figures revealing that many popular videogaming websites are staffed predominantly by white male hipsters who list their interests as “eating canap├ęs and discussing foreign politics in the rooftop gardens of pricey hotels” and who describe their turn-offs as “videogames, gamers and fun.”

Clyde - an orange ghost, who inhabits a perplexing alternate universe consisting entirely of two-dimensional mazes said:

The workforce at my current place of employment is extremely diverse. All my colleagues are ghosts of various different colours and creeds.

What brings us together as a team is the common goal of deterring an invasive species of Pac-man from irresponsibly stripping our habitat of its natural resources. If we want to ensure that there are enough yellow pac-dots and windfall fruit for our children, their children and their children's children, then we need to take action now.

Although we have disagreements from time to time, the important thing to remember is that, despite our varied skin tones, when a Pac-man ingests a power pill we all turn the same deep shade of blue.

If only online gaming sites could learn from our example, the industry might be a more diverse place.”

Asked whether he had ever considered a career in website game journalism, the tangerine-hued spectre replied:

The chances of someone like myself being employed by a site like Polygon, which is staffed mostly by white men, and has no orange ghosts on the payroll, are minimal.”

Clyde's experience reflects mounting evidence that points to online game journalism having fallen behind gaming when it comes to promoting racial and gender diversity in the workplace.

Dr. Eli Vance, a former employee of the top secret Black Mesa Facility, told MODE 5:

The occupation of our world by The Combine – an alien gestalt intent on sublimating the human race as obedient foot soldiers and worker drones - has done nothing to prevent of an increasing number of women entering STEM fields.

My daughter Alyx, for example, is a gifted student of robotics and teleportation. As we speak she is on the roof of one of City 17's numerous residential blocks, rocking out to Guitar Hero 4, with Dog – the autonomous robot bodyguard that she helped to build – accompanying her on drums.

It saddens me that Alyx who, under the tyranny of alien occupation, has flourished as a scientist, a soldier and an engineer, would struggle to find a job in online videogame journalism which remains a profession dominated by white males.

Furthermore, in City 17 a black man like myself can play an integral role in developing teleportation technology or a device that can manipulate gravity. However if one takes into consideration the poor racial diversity reflected in the workforce of websites such as Polygon, the chances of this technology being reviewed by a black man are low.”

Indicating a sealed bulkhead in the Earth resistance's secret underground bunker, Dr Vance said:

That's the passage to Ravenholm where Kotaku and Gamasutra have offices. We don't go there anymore.”

Enemies and would-be enslavers of the human race have also joined in criticising the regressive stance taken by popular online gaming sites towards employee diversity. A joint statement issued by The Combine and The Covenant read:

We realised that the conquest of the galaxies and parallel dimensions necessary to fulfil our respective manifest destinies would only be achievable through different races and cultures working together in partnership to defeat a common enemy, either as a collective brought together by a wrong-headed holy crusade, or through enforced hybridisation: In one case this enemy takes the form of a lumbering armoured cyborg. In the other instance the thorn in our side resembles a geography teacher in a hazard suit with a crap built-in torch, whose weak telekinetic abilities allow him to pick up objects and steer vehicles without using his hands.”

On contemporary earth, opportunities for racial minorities to gain a career foothold on established videogaming websites remain limited. San Andreas businessman, Carl Johnson said:

Where I grew up on Grove Street, a career as a journalist on an online gaming site like Polygon or Gamasutra was always just a pipe dream. I made my stack the same way we've always made it in the hood: By driving cars, bikes, and hovercraft in a manner liable to endanger public safety; by being taught how to fly a variety of aircraft by an agent from a top secret government agency; by infiltrating Area 51, and by bringing down a corrupt police officer in a dramatic fire-engine chase. Even now the profession of online videogames journalist seems like a closed door to me.”

Johnson's experience is echoed by that of Balrog - a street fighter whose bone-breaking victories in the world of extreme mixed martial arts are used to fund his medical school tuition fees. He told MODE 5:

The brutal combinations of head butts and uppercuts that I routinely deploy in a bid to dispatch challengers in the arena will one day be put to better use in the operating theatre, where I will attempt to undo the heinous effects of the blunt force trauma that I have unleashed upon my opponents.

My father, Avery Johnson, was a talented writer and gamer who found himself unable to secure work as an online gaming journalist. He eventually joined the UNSC Marine Corps where he rose to the rank of Sergeant Major, earning numerous commendations that included the Colonial Cross, and taking part in the defence of the Cairo Orbital Station against Covenant forces. Were he still alive, I would like to tell him that things have changed – that were I of a mind to pursue a career in online gaming journalism, the doors that were closed to him had now been opened. However that would not to be true.”

Asked whether he thought that writers and advocates of social justice such as Ben Kuchera and Leigh Alexander might inspire minorities who were hoping to make it as gaming website journalists, Balrog responded in the negative:

These people are less role models than they are prototypes for a new range of human douchebag.” 


(If you created the informative image below and would like to be credited, please get in touch)


Tuesday, 2 June 2015

Violent scenes as a temple of Cthulhu in Minecraft is mistaken for a cathedral of misogyny

The brick-based world of Minecraft was beset by scenes of ugly, low-resolution violence and mild peril when a temple dedicated to the Great Old One – Cthulhu - was targeted by social justice warriors, who had mistaken it for a cathedral of misogyny.

Social Justice Warriors descended en masse upon the appalling basilica whose foreboding buttressed ramparts and abominable vaulted ceilings are a perversion of the very essence of nature, confounding all conventional notions of geometry, and instilling within a human spectator a pervading sense of nausea that sickens the very soul.

Margaret Bickering, who participated in the raid, said:

From a distance the temple resembled a twisted, ash-blackened penis racked by disease yet somehow still standing partially erect and continuing to exert its patriarchal dominance over the surrounding lands. Our intention was to push it over and then burn the rubble.

Upon our arrival at a set of outer gates fashioned from human bone that had been only partly stripped of flesh, we were made aware by one of the temple keepers that what we had thought was a Cathedral of Misogyny, erected by the Gamergate movement, was in fact just a humble shrine to Cthulhu - a hideous dragon-winged, octopus-headed deity whose preferred mode of dress is a grass skirt and Mardi Gras beads.

Having satisfied ourselves that the cult does not concern itself with the oppression of women, but is instead focused on the broader objective of bringing about the total and utter subjugation of all humankind, we withdrew our forces and returned to Tumblr.”

One of a multitude of nameless slithering aberrations, that squeeze their gelatinous tentacled bodies through a catacomb of unnatural fissures beneath the dreadful sanctum, described the arrival of the social justice hate mob as “unsettling.”

The anomalous horror added:

I can confirm that earlier today we were visited by a throng of portly, blue-haired gargoyles, holding aloft hastily constructed placards bearing unfathomable slogans that seemed to originate from the fringes of insanity and undermine the very tenets of base common sense. Some screeched like baby birds while others chanted in a brutish guttural language calling for our white tears and demanding that we give them money, or that we establish a 'no rape zone' in the frightful chancel where we hang our giant prayer flags fashioned from the wailing sentient skin of a flayed god.

Although each of our assailants appeared to be an individual, a closer inspection revealed that they were the tentacles of a single horrifying entity, and unified towards a single purpose. Occasionally one of these mewling growths would enter into a mild disagreement with its neighbours who would immediately set about devouring it. 

"It was, without a shadow of a doubt, one of the most revolting spectacles I have ever laid my 800 eyes on.”

The mob withdrew after being reassured by vicar, Timothy Warren, who conducts a Sunday sermon at the temple, that the cult of Cthulhu holds no interest in driving women out of videogaming and STEM fields.

Describing himself as neither pro nor anti Gamergate, Warren told MODE 5:

So insignificant and pitiful is our species that even the more left-leaning, Guardian-reading Elder Gods regard us as little more than livestock. It is the fate of humanity to be broken and debased in ways that transcend flesh-bound concepts such as gender and privilege.”

The caretaker of the temple, whose name cannot be uttered less the syllables spoken together unleash the 12 pestilences, but who resembles a hippopotamus in the process of vomiting a giant, mucus-covered spider, said: 

“The temple actually has an interesting history. It was constructed by Shoggoths at the beginning of the 2nd Stone Age. To this day nobody knows the exact method they used to transport building materials from the nether plane.”

Speaking of the glass ceiling in the South Transept, which many Social Justice Warriors have cited as evidence of institutionalised sexism in Cthulhu worship, the slobbering abomination said:

The mirror of torment was installed in the ceiling of the temple in 1988 after the cosmic entity Yog-Sothoth gained ownership of the building and transformed it into a weekend bachelor pad. Mortals who look upon it may never avert their gaze, and are fated to stare transfixed as scenes of their torment and the torment of everyone they ever cared about play out upon its surface.”

this afternoon, sympathy for the Cthulhu cultists was in short supply among Social Justice Warriors who remain unrepentant, with many opining that the alien monstrosities who are calling for a public apology “should shut up check their tentacle privilege.”

Another remarked:

Instead complaining about our unprovoked attack on their temple, the cultists should use the incident as an opportunity to highlight the appalling treatment of women on Twitter. The horrors that will one day be visited upon this earth by great Cthulhu pale in comparison to the sexism experienced on a daily basis by former gender studies graduates.”

Cthulhu, who is reported to be resting after briefly awakening from an age-long slumber to pursue a boatload of sailors, could not be reached for comment.