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 411mania » Games » Columns

The Hall of Shame 10.08.08: Plumbers Don't Wear Ties
Posted by Vincent Chiucchi on 10.08.2008

Ever read a "Choose Your Own Adventure" book as a kid? Those things were awesome. It took boring old reading and made it fun by having it act out like a game. You read what happens, make one of two or three choices, and hopefully went to the right page that didn't end the story with your premature death. This basic format of playing and telling a story has been used quite a lot in video games, and these days seems to be a really popular format with games such as Phoenix Wright, KoToR, and Mass Effect.

However, there are some games that follow this formula but become a complete abomination that no one in their right mind could possibly enjoy. Today we induct one of those abominations, called Plumbers Don't Wear Ties, released for the 3DO in 1994.

Made in glorious MS Paint.

Plumbers Don't Wear Ties is supposedly an adult COYA kind of game because it involves nudity, but the problem is that the nudity comes in the form of sideboobs, the plumbers butt, and his pubes. Yep, you're paying $50 (I assume the game costs $50) to see a plumber's pubic area.

You know, I could honestly end the induction right there. What more do you need to know about how much this game sucks when I've already said "$50 to see a plumber's pubic area?" Well okay, it gets censored at the beginning though there's a code to unlock it, but seriously, are you going to spend that much money for that kind of porn? Usually I would say you can get free porn with the internet, but this was back the mid-90's, so I'm not sure how popular internet porn was back then. Even so, there's plenty of magazines and adult videos to get your fix, and you'll definitely save a lot of money. Seriously:

Cost of 3DO ($700) + Cost of Game ($50) = $750. At least when the PS3 was expensive, it was a blu-ray player.
Cost of Magazine = $5.00. Also much more widely available.
Cost of Adult Video = $15-$25. It all depends, but even if you added the price of a VCR, it's still cheaper then the 3DO.

So this game already has no hope of being sold based on the pricing. Even worse, it's an FMV GAME! At least I think it was supposed to be an FMV game. The problem is that only the beginning of the game has any actual FMV footage. The rest is a bunch of still pictures with audio dubbed over it. An FMV game that has still pictures rather then actual movie footage on a system costing you $700? There are two words that describe this perfectly, but I'd rather not say it considering I'll get 50 hate comments just for saying it. At this rate saying those words here on 411Mania is going to be illegal, and it probably should be considering using such a phrase over and over kills it's popularity, hence why Chappelle's Show was almost canceled because people would constantly say the same phrase about Rick James over and over, and so...wait, what I talking about again?

Oh yeah, the $750 FMV game that has only one FMV scene. Let's take a look at that scene:

Well first of all this looks like one of those dating videos you see if you're trying to find a date. At first she starts talking about how with the right moves we can make her do whatever we want, and so it sounds awesome. If we make the wrong moves she might become a nun and she hates that, more awesome. She says she's known as Microwave Jane because she heats up faster then a micron(?) and apparently was visited and had sex with a fire chief, the coast guard, and the Pope which I DOUBT for many reasons. But then she says she doesn't want some one night stand or date losers, berating us for thinking so pervertedly while suddenly taking her clothes off. So it's true: Women truly are the most confusing species on the planet. Maybe if I had a Twix bar with me she might change her mind. After all, Twix helps you get that one night stand you desperately want from chicks who are really into politics. Anyways, she says she'll enjoy watching us make mistakes with her like with women in real life. I thought prostitutes were supposed to do whatever the hell we wanted. Is this typical when paying only $750? Eventually she says the plumber we're controlling is basically us, and if we win, we get to have our way with her.

So what is it actually like playing the game? Well, thanks to the magic of YouTube annotations, this user has put up the entire game if you ever want to experience how horrible the game really was. Since I'm running out of things to say about this game, I will have a play session with this game to see if I can get our plumber hero to bone Jane and if the $750 this game would have cost me would be worth it.

First Choice: Get the full story

I decide to get the full story and I have some weird Asian chick do a voiceover, then we immediately start with inverted color images of racing event which is the plumbers dream apparently. Who dreams with inverted colors? It also shows shots of a racing panda bear, so it's more like an acid trip rather than a dream I suppose. When the plumber wakes up he gets a phone call from his mother who tells him to pick up the phone or she'll be there in 5 minutes. Then we get ZOMG DRAMATIC MUSIC! John picks up the phone and the woman starts bitching about John not having a girlfriend, not wearing that tie, and possibly being gay. Meanwhile, Jane is getting a phone call from her rich father talking about how she needs to get married just like John's mother bitched about a moment ago. So apparently this game is going to be breaking the fourth wall. Well that's just great. We then get a montage of the two showering and I get to see some PUSSY...cat. Seeing all the nude parts I would've paid $750 for get censored. C'MON! With that kind of money could I have AT LEAST gotten to see some vagina?

The two meet for the first time at a parking lot...somewhere. John is there for...some reason, and Jane is there for a job interview. After the two see each other in the parking lot I'm suddenly interrupted by Harry Armis, a guy with a tux and army helmet, explaining how I, the controller of the story, must make it so that Jane and John get together with each other. Well what do you think I'm paying $750 to see douchebag?

Second Choice: He makes the first move

John makes the five move and the two have a very awkward conversation. John asks her out to lunch, and Jane sees how well he handles rejection. A big problem with this game is that the characters say what they're secretly thinking, but you can't really tell the way the audio plays and the still photos don't help. After Jane walks away a buzzer sounds and Harry is back to give me my next choices.

Third Choice: John pursues Jane

John decides to pursue Jane by suddenly giving her flowers out of nowhere, making him both a plumber and a magician. She agrees to have lunch with him but then, OH NOES, she asks what his job his. John lies by saying he's an account rep. He keeps lying, she buys it, and John celebrates his success by jumping in the air with his fist up high with some weird song about me being a star that I'm pretty sure came from some Broadway play or old movie. I was so enamored by the star song that I don't pay attention to whatever the fuck John is doing.

So afterwards we cut to the office building with the worst music I've ever heard. Thresher is talking to Jane about the job, and unfortunately Jane isn't getting the job. But Jane is getting desperate. So what to do now?

Fourth Choice: Thresher finds a job for Jane after all

Thresher decides to make her his personal secretary, and then goes into details about what the job will be like. Jane takes the job and is thankful Thresher isn't one of those bosses that take advantage of the situation, and Thresher loves his subordinates wild imagination. Look, if it doesn't lead to Jane getting fucked by someone, I don't care. Bunch of stupid talk happens, and when Jane goes outside to see John again, John disses me and talks about loving Jane. Jane ditches him because she already has a good job, so I made the wrong choice. Damn it, I should have known to not make Jane's life good!

Harry interrupts and talks about how Jane is with the wrong man. An audience laughs at my now pathetic score. Yeah, you score points in this game. But WHY?! I just want something to masturbate too! Time to make a different choice.

Redoing Fourth Choice: Turn poor Jane away

Thresher refuses to give Jane the job and thinks she's acting like some idiot who tries to get a job based on her looks and going into a crying act. He just goes on and on and on and on and not one article of clothing is coming off from anybody. Afterwards Jane is really desperate to be in a relationship, so she decides to be with John. But when she gets to the parking lot, John leaves thinking she wouldn't fall for him. Oh god damn it John, I get her desperate enough to be with you and you ride off like a dumbass! Harry bashes me again, but this time I know I'm picking the right choice. I hope.

Again, Redoing Fourth Choice: The hairball takes advantage of the situation

Thresher decides Jane could get the job if she decides to take her clothes off. Jane, despite really not wanting to be a nun because she gets on her knees more then the Pope himself (her words, not mine), REALLY does not want to do this. Despite being the right choice of the three, Harry is calling me a disgusting pervert like I made the wrong choice. I thought all the choices I made is right since, you know, I'm the one spending $750 for this.

Fifth Choice: Our heroine declines the disgusting proposal!

Jane isn't an idiot and at one point I believe she kicks him in the balls, which is never actually shown. She refuses, so Thresher grabs a pair of scissors and decides to try and kill her. Only any time they show him chasing her, the still picture makes it look like they're posing rather then running, so it all looks simply retarded. Did I mention this is supposed to be a porn game costing $750? John sees whats going on and decides to get involved. Harry questions if I can make the right choice without getting a really awful score.

But wait, now some woman in a karate outfit decides to take over hosting duty and now the two of them are suddenly going at it. I wonder if this how Drew Carey got to take over The Price is Right? So Thelma, a wanted woman for hijacking works of fiction, becomes the new host and now I'm getting made fun of by her as well. I wonder if this game had a secret ending where she gets raped if you got a high enough score. That would definitely be worth $750.

Sixth Choice: John heroically dashes off to save Jane

Upon making this choice I get a Benny Hill kind of scene with the three running everywhere as Thresher tries to stab Jane and John is following them all over the place, and half the time it's like they don't even remember they're supposed to be in a chase scene. This whole thing makes no sense to me at all. The chase ends up at some dilapidated building where John ends up saving Jane by beating the crap out of Thresher. They're about to call the police, but Thresher offers Jane $5 million to not call the police and spend one night with Thresher.

The host, now in some other outfit for no reason, wants the game to end right now for the sake of women everywhere. Then Harry comes in and starts fake shooting at her, and she fake dies by lying on the ground and having an X over her face. So Harry is host once again, and he continues to think I suck at this game. At this rate I'm going to stick around for the credits to find out this guy's name and murder him if I don't see some hardcore fucking for my $750 I didn't actually spent. At this point I don't care if he starts fucking the chick's "dead" corpse! Is anybody going to fuck anyone?!

Seventh Choice: Jane rejects the power

John wants Jane to refuse the offer because he's in love with her, he starts making a romantic speech, and at this point the game I just don't care what's going on anymore. Hell, THEY don't care what's going on anymore because John screws up his line and people off set are laughing and saying to just keep the scene the way it is. Damn it, I want my porn NOW!!!

So now they're back in the parking lot, and now it's time to make the final decision. Let's see what finally happens.

Eight Choice: I want the Hollywood ending.

They kiss, talk a bunch, drive off somewhere, and the game is officially over.


Wait, what's this? Apparently there was a different ending I could've chosen. This must be where they actually have sex! Probably the best fucking sex in the world! C'mon Plumber Don't Wear Ties, make my $750 worth it!

Redoing Eighth Choice: Gimme something completely different

Jane turns out to have a deep, dark secret...SHE'S A VIRGIN! John calls this a disability (oh Jesus Christ!) but still accepts her, but Jane here wants to be a virgin forever and become a nun. So their relationship has officially ended as John goes back to his mother. Harry insults me for not getting John any nookie. Yep, I'm a horrible person for making sure Jane stays a virgin. So first I screwed up by letting Jane get the job, and I screwed up by making sure she lives a life of celibacy? But wouldn't the game be praising me for this because of the way they were belittling me for acting like a sexual deviant?

$750 for the system and game, and not only do I not see any vagina, but I'm bashed for being both a sexual deviant and a life saver.

If that isn't enough to turn you off of porn and video games forever, I don't know what is.


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