Andrew Allanson (Director of YIIK; Ackk Studios) Believes Games Aren't Art Because Players Can't Understand His Vision; Also a piece of shit

So the director of YIIK and co-founder of Ackk Studios went on a ramble about how people just didn’t understand the writing of YIIK. “they just don’t get it”, to paraphrase. games can’t be art if they don’t understand Allanson’s diatribe apparently

but the biggest take away is where he made these comments. the source isn’t mentioned, and from the tweets, you can see why

I do not recommend listening to the source podcast for context it’s Extremely offensive.

Being on and a fan of a podcast that hosts gamergaters, white nationalists, and literal rape apologists (to name a few) tells you all you need to know about this dude’s views

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I was actually still interested in giving this game a fair shake because I thought it looked neat, but fuck that I guess.

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At first this guy just seemed like a big goon but hearing about the game’s secret third ending and I think I’m done with him.

That ending, incidentally, apparently involves the protagonist consuming a red pill received from Dick Masterson, the same guy who runs the podcast the above quote is taken from.

That’s what I’ve heard, anyway.

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(Does anyone else remember that during the Ferguson protests that Tim Pool was running one of the two Vice Livestream s? I didn’t hear about this guy again until like 3 weeks ago and apparently now he’s all nosteppy or worse? How could you be boots on the ground for something like that and go completely to the other side?)

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We’re long past the point where making your protagonist a flawed broken or toxic person with a highly privileged background is acceptable unless the text is unambiguously confronting said characters toxicity. If you’re going to explore someone being a shithead you probably don’t have enough wiggle room to portray them as cool because they’re into niche subcultures

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“Is my game a badly written mess?”

“No, its the gamers who are wrong”

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I felt the need to share this because this is possibly the worst way you could do a homage to this man. In the game YIIK, you can run across a gravestone that has Satoru Iwata on it. Not only does this not make any sense since this game is set in the 90’s but it’s also a shitty thing to do.

Well to say I’m disappointed is a massive understatement.

I think I’m one of the few people who actually liked YIIK, playing it for review months before the rest of the internet found out about it. The text of the game genuinely spoke to me on a personal level, and I was frustrated with the discourse when the game finally launched, with valid criticisms being drowned out by out of context screenshots and complaints in bad faith (for example, that above Iwata grave stone isn’t a dig at Iwata but within the wider weird context of the game, a sort of paying of respects).

However, my desire to defend the game started to dry up when I found out who they hired to play the main character Alex, a man who is a known serial abuser who was in a close knit circle with PsyGuy, an absolute ass of a human being who groomed underage girls. Someone from the game’s team did email us about a disclaimer I added to my review after in a pretty calm manner, wanting to understand the allegations, which myself and my editor we’re happy to do, which means there may be less chance of the companies involved ever hiring that back of dicks again.

I checked out of the conversation after awhile because I realized I was projecting a lot since the game hit me on a genuinely raw level, and I was finally glad to never have to worry about the discourse around this game again.

Cut to yesterday, when my twitter mentioned YIIK was in the discourse again, which I was glad I could easily ignore because I was busy with VTMB (please stop me from playing that game I need to get articles done), and then that quote got retweeted in my timeline.

This one fucking hurt.

Why white indie game dev guys constantly gotta reveal themselves to be trash fires who believe women have smaller brains then men or spout out MRA lingo. It’s especially infuriating because the game is about trying to be your best self and breaking free from toxic, self-destructive mindsets, only to see the creator of the game literally doing the exact opposite because his ego got hurt.

I get being upset when people reject your art, but this is beyond the pail. This is the sort of ghoulish behavior I see from the types who actively want to “conquer” women because they hate them too much to form any sort of meaningful relationship, or end up listening to people who think Hitler had some good ideas.

Yeah I’m done.

I hope this dude disappears along with Jonathan Blow and his room filled with piss jars.

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I apologize for the double post but I’ll share more stuff about this game.
I’ll be spoiling the endings.

So this game is about multiple different realities. Early on you discover that across multiple realities, each person shares the same soul. They are different people, but have the same core. This goes for every person and obviously including Alex.

At a certain point in the game you meet an android that is made up of multiple of these personalities in one body who comes to Alex’s reality. She says she is made up of the girl who disappears at the start, plus another party member, plus other people and they all seem to have a connection to Alex. After the worst dungeon in the world she reveals the reason she came is because Alex himself is the cause of the end of the world. Multiple realities have already been destroyed and Alex’s is next. She encourages him to just split and leave his body (which is a thing people can do) and let reality be destroyed, Alex says no and tries to fight. This leaves the question in the game, “why Alex? Why will he destroy world?”

At the turn of the century (Y2K), you see the thing that is going to destroy reality is literally a meteor with Alex’s face on it. This was a huge what the fuck. And then reality gets destroyed cause you can’t beat it.

Alex, basically wonders through where Souls reside and comes across a haven of multiple Alex’s from different realities who all left with the Android when they were asked. When you try to leave the area you get a choice, do you want to join the meteor that is destroying multiple realities? The various version of Alex’s just seemingly seem so pissed at the universe they seemingly just want to destroy everything, so they join together and end one reality and then move on to the next, collecting more Alex’s as it goes.

Then in one final twist this Alex joins with one more version of Alex to confront the meteor again. This version of Alex, is YOU. The player. You’re reality connects you to it through the video game. It feels like everything was built up for this twist.

Then in the last twist that I didn’t fully understand, it seems like the android from earlier lied to you. She wasn’t other people, she shared the same soul as Alex and was basically recruiting other Alex’s to destroy realities until she was the only one. This was from my understanding because it didn’t really explain it well, she talked about being separate from the other Alex’s and not wanting to go back. This game ends with you the player, collapsing all the Alex’s into one. Which ends up being, you the Player.

Roll Credits.

As for the other ending

“The second ending reveals the “true” Alex, which is literally just the Developer himself who fuses all the Alex’s into himself and leaves into the true universe, he then writes up a whole speech ripping off Wallace’s statements about Postmodernism dying out to become New Sincerity, basically telling you the whole game’s about REJECTING postmodernism, and you escape into the soul space in an elevator with Sammy before reality can be destroyed rather than chasing after the android. Helpfully, Alex tells you that you’re not Alex because he’s Alex.”

this game is awful. YIIK’s not actually post modern. It’s just game with idiots talking about post modernism in it.

I apologize, my post was not to insult anyone who liked but to show what king of people is the crator of this game.

Not all is bazd from this game since there is a track made by Toby fox.

There are genuinely a lot of talented people connected with this game, especially in the soundtrack department (there’s even a remix of Every Day Is Night from VA-11 Hall-A in it), but MAN all the pretty colors and great music can’t excuse what a toxic garbage fire the guy in charge turned out to be.

I can’t be bothered to return to Read Only Memories anymore for a similar reason.

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All I remember about this game was a brief chat on Waypoint Radio about it and seeing the trailer and going “huh, that looks kinda neat.”

I am definitely not touching it now.

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I’ve never heard of this game and that title is inscrutable to me so I don’t know how to pronounce it. I’m going to choose to pronounce it “yiik” because that’s an approximation of the sound I made when I read those statements of his.

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The lesson being never make a game that has 3 out of the 5 letters in yikes, its just too easy

Hey heads up, your spoiler tags aren’t working! They need to be on each side of every paragraph (it’s tedious I know)

Maybe it was a subconscious warning to potential buyers?

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Big Brain Feces Auteur should take his genius into exile

The main character and game developer being a CHUD are the least of this game’s problem. Both mechanically and thematically, this game is a pile, and is made more of a pile because it actually had some potential if the creators had been self-aware.

I’m running a let’s play of the game over on SomethingAwful right now so I’m pretty familiar with it. Let’s go over some of the worst thematic problems:

  1. One of the characters in game will commit suicide if you don’t treat him well. In alternate versions, he makes suicide jokes. Your character also tells him that “depression is a choice.”

  2. It utilizes a real person’s death as a plot device. Elisa Lam is written into this game over and over and over and used as a plot device, to the point where she becomes a love interest. Keep in mind the character has less than ten minutes of actual screentime with her.

  3. Characters are one-dimensional (surprise!)

  4. The police officers will only target your black party members.

  5. Combat is a slog, with each character’s minigames taking up to 30 seconds per turn. No, I’m not kidding.

Don’t give this game money. There are LPs on youtube instead.

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Should we all just play along?

“Andrew you are totally right and games are just toys for children! You should take your big boy brain and go make smart adult art somewhere else, the door is right here, you shouldn’t ever have to touch game development ever again.”

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Jesus. “I’m going to make a game about the ‘90s. Let’s put Elisa Lam in it!”

I mean, besides the fact that this is totally fucking irresponsible, it just makes no sense at all.

What a trainwreck.

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