Sit Down, Have a Drink. Let Me Tell You About My Time With 'The Quiet Man'

Most video games are not surprising. They may be good, bad, or something in-between, but surprising? That’s unusual, if only because, to cut through the noise, games these days have to announce themselves early—and loudly. That’s not, and I swear I didn’t mean to set up a pun, The Quiet Man. The Quiet Man is the most surprising game I’ve played in a long time, and for that reason alone, whenever this very weird game comes out, I’ll be paying attention.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at

This was such a funny read and such a beautiful thing to have on a Friday. Nice work, Patrick!

This reminds me of finding Sonic Lost World at E3 2014. I had never been to a convention before, and had somehow or other lucked myself in getting press creds. So I’m 23, I don’t know how to talk to devs, I’ve never even been in the same room as one. Sonic Lost World is the very first game I find as I’m wandering the show floor, more or less lost. Nobody was playing it, I figure, “let’s give this a shot”.

All I can say is that the demo version of the game is what you got, I don’t know if they managed to fix anything. It was bad, really bad. A dev came up to me and made conversation as I’m playing. Now here I’m trying my best to be polite, as I’m basically aghast in horror at how bad this is. I desperately wanted to ask “how did this happen?” but was more diplomatic “what Sonic game inspired you guys when you made this?” (Cause Sonic 2006 was popping into my mind as the game glitched like many times and the boss fight ended halfway when the boss disappeared suddenly.) The dev guy didn’t have a good answer but he admitted “okay, maybe this level doesn’t show very well”. I nodded, ashamed for him. Then I played the other levels in the demo and they were much, much worse.

I actually felt bad for the devs and didn’t want to just laugh at what I was seeing. I probably could have told everybody “you gotta see this fucking trainwreck of a game, holy shit”. Instead I think I just wrote a small footnote in a post on it about how bad this game was and moved on to better things. Maybe in retrospect I should have warned the world, I dunno.

Anyway, I’m way hyped for Quiet Man reviews now.

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Dude looks like Gary from Team America


I’m quietly waiting for the logic-defying nonsense explanation for why subtitles are erratically deployed in the most baffling way possible for this game.

That’s a great story and I am never going to play this game in my life.
Thank you for it, Patrick!

apologies for bumping, but this felt like the most appropriate place to mention this.

Giant Bomb East played this on their Extra Life stream, and holy mother of god. Patrick was not kidding. if you have the time, you should catch the stream when it gets archived. if you don’t have the time, wait for the inevitable Quiet Man themed Best Of GB. just… just don’t spend any money on this, whatever you do.


I was glued to the screen even though I had a bunch of other plans. That game is absolutely unbelievable. Like, I am completely speechless, I have no idea what to say, just that people MUST experience that stream.

The game is also straight up racist at times and needs a bucketload of content warnings.

The best description I can come up with is that The Quiet Man has been made by an AI made by preteen boys whose sole cultural and political experience comes from videogames released in the mid-2000s.


That was a stream and a half as everyone watching/playing slowly broke as the game continued to go on without answering anything (or even playing by a consistent set of rules).

While very different in quality, I have to wonder if the pitch meeting for this included review clips about Her Story. The week timer (on the reveal via subtitles), the way the game not only refuses to explain stuff but is clearly created to push questions - while it doesn’t have the gameplay mechanics of shuffling of clips, something about The Quiet Man felt like it was a pitch someone thought up after playing Her Story (and living through the last decade+ of JJ mystery boxes).

Turns out we were all The Quiet Man all along.


GBE’s stream was just an experience.
My face was morphing between laughter and sheer disbelief at the baffling choices they made around every aspect of this game.

No one should spend money on this thing, but I’ll urge you to watch the archive of GBE’s playthrough.
It’s a lot.


I totally missed this story the first time it came around and I’m glad it was bumped because: wow.

Excited for Patrick’s 100% playthrough of The Quiet Man.


Best part is that the ending stinger is a countdown for when they patch in actual dialog.


Here’s my best guess about why this exists. Someone at Human Head wanted to experiment with an FMV/action hybrid movie-game. The problem is that in 2018, a lot of people will just watch that kind of game on Twitch or YouTube. There needs to be a reason for players to buy it and play it for themselves. So: what if the game ships in a baffling, incomprehensible, but weirdly compelling state, then a week later the key that makes it understandable (actual dialog) is patched in? I think they’re hoping people will watch it on stream in the first week, then buy it to find out what exactly they watched.

Like, this tweet about the game having a 96 star American flag is just another part of this puzzle. This can’t be incidental, the weirdness to some extent has to be intentional. But why? What purpose is served by this? This piece by Patrick does some work towards unwinding this mystery which most publications (I expect) will not. It can be that the game is just plain bad, but if so, why is it so bad?

I mean…I just finished watching the Giant Bomb playthrough and promptly searched for any info I could find about the game’s production. I found this promotional video and everyone involved seems to be very serious about what they’ve made. Maybe some lower level artists knew what the game would be and got stuff like the 96 United States Flag passed editorial review, but apparently most (if not all) of the folks in a managerial/directorial capacity at Human Head are quite unironic about this game.

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Uh, friends? I can’t be the only one that feels this way, but I’ve scoured Twitter and Google and have found nothing. I think I have an explanation for this game—one so conspiratorial that it defies imagination. The Quiet Man is a vanity project. The Quiet Man himself is in fact…

Tom Brady.


Next letter series confirmed.

That would explain the racism