The Fryer, Vol. 11
GameStop encouraged this person to buy NARC, saying it was a great game.
GameStop under fire for recommending bad games
Just weeks after being hit with accusations of selling used games as new, GameStop today faces new allegations that its employees routinely misrepresent bad games as good games when making recommendations to customers.
The Fryer has received numerous tips from across the country of shoppers being told a game was good by a GameStop employee, only to take it home and find it's obviously bad. Even worse, these bad games are often sold at good-game prices, rather than the bargain-bin rates they deserve, according to multiple reports.
"My little Billy loved the Iron Man movie, so I asked the man at the GameStop if the Iron Man game was any good," said Gladys Jackson, a 76-year-old shopper from Oklahoma City. "The man smiled and told me it was great, but the next day Billy came up to me and told me right to my face that the game I got him was 'boring' and 'poopy.' What kind of a man would sell a grandmother a poopy game for her grandson?"
The bad recommendations aren't just for the elderly, though. "I was in a GameStop last month and they were all out of Rock Band 2, so I asked the dude at the counter if Rock Revolution was any good," said Jamal Cooper, a 19-year-old from Seattle, Washington. "Dude looked right in my face and said it was just as good as Rock Band. I took it home and it was not as good as Rock Band. When I tried to return it, the dude said it was a matter of opinion, but he was kind of grinning, like he knew he had sold me a clunker."
A spokesperson for the FTC said that while it's hard to prove fraud in cases like these, charges could be brought if "a game that was represented as good is indisputably bad, like Alone in the Dark or the new Destroy All Humans game."
A GameStop spokesperson said he couldn't comment on internal company policies, but did say that he thought Rock Revolution was underrated.
Reporter's Notebook: CAPTIVATE09 in Monte Carlo
The Fryer was lucky enough to snag an invite to Capcom's exclusive CAPTIVATE09 Gamer's Day event in Monte Carlo. With the embargo for coverage from the event just lifted, we thought you might like an exclusive, unedited look at a page from our reporter's notebook. Enjoy.
"Jake and the Fatman" star "hopeful" for game revival in wake of Mr. T announcement
In an exclusive interview with the Fryer, actor Joe Penny said that he was "more hopeful than ever" about the prospects for a videogame revival of the hit TV series "Jake and the Fatman."
Penny, who played investigator Jake Styles in 104 episodes of the series from 1987 to 1992, said he first got the idea for a "Jake and the Fatman" comeback years ago, when he saw new games and movies based on campy retro shows like "Charlie's Angels" and "The Dukes of Hazzard." "People tend to dismiss 'Jake and the Fatman,' but we lasted for five seasons -- that's just as long as the Charlie's Angels," Penny said during a lunch interview at a local Arby's. "We even had a spin-off, 'Diagnosis Murder,' that lasted well into the 21st century. So when people tell me 'Jake and the Fatman' just isn't relevant to today's audience ... I just don't get where that's coming from, you know?"
While Penny said developer and publisher interest has been "good, not great" so far, he said he thinks the recent announcement of a game based on the life of 'The A-Team' star Mr. T has once again renewed interest in retro TV action heroes. "What does Mr. T have that I don't have? Gold chains? I can buy some gold chains. A Mohawk? I can grow a Mohawk. And people know me. Just ask the kids in my neighborhood ... they'll tell you all about my private eye exploits I pulled off alongside the Fatman."
Asked about the widely reported non-cooperation of the estate of "Jake and the Fatman" co-star William "Fatman" Conrad, Penny said he was confident they'd turn around once they saw his vision for the game come to life. "Just picturing that gorgeous, rotund body, rendered in an accurate 3-D model behind a virtual DA's desk ... it gives me chills." Penny also said he's been working on a vocal impersonation of Conrad, just in case the potential game makers need any more voice help.
Full disclosure: The interviewer was forced to pay for Penny's lunch because the actor claims he left his wallet "in his other pants."
Sega announces new compilation of best compilation games
In a move sure to excite nostalgia-starved gamers, Sega today announced the Sega Collection Collection, collecting the best compilation games from Sega's long history onto a single disc.
"Today's adult gamers grew up playing collections of previous Sega classics that were compiled in one place," said Sega spokesman Jim Samson in a press conference announcing the collection. "Now, those gamers can relive the memories of those compilations of yesteryear, and maybe check out a few compilations they may have missed along the way."
Fully 13 of Sega's most popular collections will be collected on the disc: Sega Ages, Sega Classics Arcade Collection, Sega Classics Collection, Sega Genesis Collection, Sega Puzzle Pack, Sega Smash Pack, Sonic Classics 3-In-1, Sonic Compilation, Sonic Gems Collection, Sonic Jam, Sonic Mega Collection, and Sonic & Knuckles Collection. The one notable omission, of course, is Sonic's Ultimate Genesis Collection, which was just released last month and can hardly be called a classic of the genre just yet.
Sega is apparently going for "the full compilation experience" in Collection Collection by offering what the press release calls "pixel-perfect emulation of every console-specific version of each compilation as it originally appeared when it was first released as a compilation." That means gamers can once again enjoy the thrill of unlocking Super Zaxxon in the PSP version of Sega Genesis Collection, or use the Spin Dash in the Sonic Jam version of Sonic the Hedgehog. It's compilation gaming just like you remember it!
Look for Sega Collection Collection on the Xbox 360 and PSP in time for Christmas.
Editor's note: These stories are 100-percent satire. Yes, Kyle Orland made it all up.