Thursday, November 27, 2008

Ladies and Gentlemen... Lego Alpha Team

Any gamer is familiar with the recent phenomena of Lego video games, whether it's "Lego Star Wars" or "Lego Indiana Jones" or shockingly enough "Lego Batman." But could you imagine that back in the day when Lego actually created their own themes instead of cashing in on the latest movies, there were ORIGINAL LEGO VIDEOGAMES!?!?!

In my last post, I introduced you to Lego Island, a piece of filthy communist propaganda. Now, this game was such a huge part of my childhood, I don't feel like I really did it much justice apart from exposing it's communist agenda. But there will be time to do an in-depth review of Lego Island later... Right now we're on to ALPHA TEAM!


The story of this game is basically what you'd expect from the cover- a team of secret agents trying to stop a super villain named Ogel from taking over the world. But you'd be surprised to discover that the game isn't actually an action game but a puzzle game, involving the proper placement of various gadgets. The game itself is actually surprisingly challenging- not what you would expect from a Lego game. Also, the music is pretty rad. If I could I would put it on my iPod. Or at least use it in a soundtrack for a spy movie. It's pretty sweet like that.

Anyways, enough about the game... Our titular protagonists are much more interesting.
Let's meet them, shall we?

Dash- Dash is the member of the team that you begin the game with, and he is for all intents and purposes, a flat-topped, bestubbled generic action hero type. According to the game, Dash is the Alpha Team's "Motion Expert." Motion expert? What the hell does that even mean? If it anything like that one song from "Hairspray" about not being able to stop the motion of the ocean? How can I, Michael Toland become a motion expert?

Crunch- Crunch is the second member of the team you rescue, and he appears to be the team's Homelessness Expert. Or the team Rapist Expert. Or maybe both... Oh wait, he's supposed to be a Demolitions Expert? He looks more like some guy you would finding sleeping outside the 7-11 or threatening your family than any type of secret agent... In either case, he does not look like somebody that I would trust with bombs.

Radia- Radia is the team's nonexistant haircolor expert, as well as the Laser Expert. Now, you might think that this would make her the most badass member of the team but like I said it's a puzzle game, not an action one, meaning that her lasers just... bounce of mirrors. So instead of being a badass, she's boring...

Cam- Cam is the team Motor Expert. Which why she has an exorbitant amount of wrenches. I don't know why she would need that many wrenches to do her job (although according to the box art, she can use them to deflect lasers, thus making her a better female character than Radia.) Myabe she can lend Radia one of her wrenches to defend herself from Crunch when he oversteps his boundaries, seeing as Radia's lasers actually don't do anything!

Charge- Dash's brother in flat-toppery, he's the team's Electricity expert. He has a sweet goatee and sunglasses, and is thus cooler than any other person on the team. Radia wishes she could grow a goatee and be half as cool as Charge, but she can't because she is boring. Cam wants to get inside Charge's pants. So does Crunch.

Flex- Flex was always my favorite Alpha Team member when I was a kid. Something about the way he had that CRRRRRAAAAZY huge smile all the time and the way I always envisioned Barney from "The Simpsons" voice emanating from him just made him a much better character than his fellow Alpha Team compatriots. He always seemed so joyous and whimsical and for some reason that really appealed to me as a kid. Flex is the team's Rope expert and-
Wait a minute... Rope expert?
Like climbing and stuff of course! Just because he works with ropes doesn't mean that he's into that-
Oh god that smile... Why is smiling like that?
I take back everything I said about Crunch. I think that Flex is definitely the team Rapist expert. Who even knows what he's looking at right now? Oh god... The thing on top of his helmet... What is that even for?

So there you have it! The most badass, most rape convictionist secret agents to ever pop out of Lego! I just never realized how terrifying they were until I got older, just as I never thought to see the communist agenda in Lego Island... How many of these Lego games have these dark undertones!?!?

Up Next: Our look at Lego games concludes with LEGO RACERS!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

A Rebirth (AKA Bricks and Borscht: Communism in Lego Island

There are some things that simply need to be done.

I doubt that many, if any of you will remember my old blog on Myspace in which I rambled about MODOK, old videogames, pimp-smacking the Clock King and even died once or twice. Well, I deleted my Myspace long ago, and my blog along with it but something has been gnawing at me to write a new one... To return to my rambling ways, because if I don't than someone else will have to and I might as well spare them the trouble.

It is to that end that I christen this... THY GEEK RAMBLES! My new, ramblin' blog!

Why Thy Geek? Because I am one. And the "Thy" reminds me of "Thy Dungeonman" which is a cool name. So there.

Now that I'm back on the scene, it's time to wonder... What topic could have called me out of my retirement? What could have been so important that I take up a new blog after all these years?

Communism. Plain and simple.

Now, when you think of Communist states, you think of places like the U.S.S.R, China, North Korea and... Lego Island?

Now, few of you may remember Lego Island, a kid-friendly PC Game about the power of building toys and what not.

Those of you who did play Lego Island (such as myself. I loved this game as a kid) will no doubt fondly recall building jet-skis and racercars, meeting a cast of colorful Lego characters and delivering Mama and Papa Brickolini's Pizzas in the role of their adopted son, Pepper.

How young and foolish we both were. Little did we realize that this game was little more than a piece of commie propaganda designed to indoctrinate us young, impressionable kids! But you don't have to take my word for it... Ladies and Gentlemen, WHY LEGO ISLAND IS COMMUNIST!

First things first, let's introduce our single party state ruler, the Infomaniac! he's supposed to guide you through the many wonders of Lego Island, and while at first he may seem friendly... Just look at him!

Now look at Stalin.

Chilling, isn't it? And notice the prevalence of the color red on his map? Something fairly COMMUNIST is afoot here... But that is hardly the only thing communisty here. A central draw of the game is building the Lego vehicles and driving them around... Until you realize that the vehicles you build aren't for your personal use, they're for the good of the state! I remember I built a totally badass jetski only to see some fucker driving it around a few minutes later... Although I suppose it wasn't my jetski. IT WAS THE STATE'S!

Let's consider the playable characters in the game. You can assume the role of one of several lego people, including Italian stereotypes Mama and Papa Brickolini, the aforementioned delivery boy Pepper and... POLICE OFFICERS?

That's right. Ladies and Gentlemen: Nick and Laura Brick. Nick Brick was my favorite character, until I realized that they were little more than the Infomaniac's secret police! You may say "Oh, but Michael, they're just ordinary law enforcement officers! They keep the peace! That's all!" WRONG! And here is perhaps the darkest part of Lego Island...
Ladies and Gentlemen, meet the unfortunate enemy of the state: The Brickster.

Look at him, trapped behind bars. In my childhood he was the embodiment of all evil as he wanted to take this apart instead of build them, but now I truly realize his tragedy. For daring to oppose the Infomaniac's iron clad rule, the Brickster was imprisoned for life, to be heckled and reviled by the people as he slowly starves to death! Just look at the sign they hung outside his cell...


Actually, that sign is supposed to say "Pizza." That's what it says when you go to the cell with any character other than Pepper (who is dyslexic. No joke.) Okay, so the destructive enemy of the state isn't allowed any Pizza. Is that so bad? When you consider that the only source of food aprat from small animals is the Brickolini Pizza place, it is!
This callus treatment of the enemy of the state, combined with de-emphasis on personal property (many a time I would just walk up to a vehicle and take it, no questions asked? Pepper's trademark skateboard became Nick Brick's trademark skateboard many-a -time, and there was that bastard who took my jetski!) and the motif of the red as well as other elements that I can't show you in picture form (the propaganda coming from each car radio) and we have quite the communist state on our hands...
Kim Jong-Il
The Infomaniac.
They're commies.

Lenin had Trotsky... The Infomaniac has Nick Brick.

My money's on Nick Brick. That guy is a straight up thug.

Lego based games were a huge part of my early childhood... This one was my favorite. Imagine my disappointment now that I understand that I was being programmed to hate America this entire time. It makes me wonder what new understanding might be reached with an in-depth examination of each one...

I think I smell a series coming on.

Up Next: Lego Alpha Team!