Humor is one of the toughest things to get right in, well, anything. Everyone's tastes are different, so I totally get why such a concept is so difficult. Still, I appreciate attempts made by various developers. Such is the case with Bill Hates Videogames, which features a man I quickly related to thanks to his hate of video games. While my dream of ending video games forever is some ways away, I could at least laugh along with Bill and his desire to escape a video game.
Looking quite a bit like a hand-drawn parody of the Zelda series, Bill Hates Videogames manages to combine silly puzzle solving with charming humor and wit. Does it work all the time? Nah. An excess of fart jokes, including a button dedicated to doing nothing but farting, doesn't really help much. However, when the game gets clever, it really shines.
One great example comes with the boss that ends the demo. The boss is a pretty clear parody of the Nintendo classic "floating head with two floating hands that have eyes on them" trope. You can solve a simple puzzle to damage the boss, then throw a bomb in their mouth to hurt them. The first time you do the boss promptly gets upset, pointing out he's only paid minimum wage and shouldn't really have to deal with this before leaving. Hilariously, before I got my chance on the game, I watched another player struggle with the puzzle and, after a minute, the boss declared themselves bored and left. It's the multiple path options I never knew I wanted.
Most of the rest of Bill Hates Videogames is pretty simple. A large chunk is just Bill solving some basic puzzles and minor interactions. When Bill walks into a room and sees one lit torch and three unlit torches, he straight up says he knows how to solve the puzzle and that it's a waste of his time. Another second had him talking to a statue of truth and giving answers that were truthful, if slightly awkward and painful. A riddle is solved with farting. Bill really does hate the video game he's in and has no problem letting everyone know.
There's something super charming about the whole affair. The whole time the game was making people watching and playing it laugh, and the developers seemed to be having just as much fun as the players were. They were more than happy to talk about their game and point out little secrets. During one section I managed to find a silly little secret where Bill could get a wish from a rock, and the developer admitted that he really wanted to turn this into a secret fake ending where players can finish the game only minutes after starting it.
Only time can tell if Bill Hates Videogames will have more than meta-humor going for it. The trailer showed combat, but I didn't see any in the game outside of the aforementioned puzzle boss. It looks fine, but I'll have to save the judgment on that for when I see it. However, even if it's just passable, I think Bill Hates Videogames is the perfect video game for someone who, ironically, loves video games.
Bill Hates Videogames does not currently have a launch date or platforms.