Tuesday, 29 September 2009

Knock their undead heads off, Daddy!

Time to share a long-kept, dark secret: I have a penchant for those cute little Internet games that provide bursts of edification during the working day. (If, by 'penchant' you really take it that I mean 'life-threatening addiction' and by 'bursts of edification' I really mean 'ways of wasting entire days to square-eyed, brain-dead uselessness', you'll have a better of what I'm actually talking about.)

But too long have a lived with this truth closeted up in the very private list of shameful cookies. I feel now I need to share this love with the world. (Yes, well, that, and I might as well stop wasting so much time in futile endeavour and instead transform these useless hours into something productive. We'll call it 'research'. I did train as an academic after all, so I do know how to turn personal obsessions into objects of nominal public interest.) So, allow me dear reader to introduce a new feature on excretera: an enumeration of the shitty, but highly entertaining ways I waste my time.

The first I would like to share with you is, as you might have guessed from the above image, is Ashes to Ashes Zombie Cricket. The premise: the Australian cricketers are undead brain-eaters that you need to batter into re-death with an imaginative range of cricket balls. Extra points for a direct decapitation; even more for a decapitation with a special exploding ball. Note the special roles for Ricky Ponting, Crocodile Dundee, Dame Edna and, I think,what are supposed to be anonymous Shelias.

Terrible, terrible stereotyping. Of Australians. Brilliant.

For the record, I have won back the Ashes twice. Top score: 177. Good, but not insurmountable. I'm sure that any seven year old can double that with only ten minutes practice. (Suffice it to say, it took me much more practice to get there. I'm just about 3 1/2 years too old to 'get' video games. My brother, who is 3 years, 9 months and a bit younger than me, is of a completely different generation: you know, those younger people that can pick up any video game and immediately get it in a way that makes you think that maybe they really did start inserting gaming components into embryos in 1974. And have gotten much better since, obviously.)

Which brings me to the real shame: my sons (Will, 5 and Jonah, 4) caught me playing on Sunday, and insisted on watching. 'Good one, Daddy!' Jonah congratulated me as I knocked a zombie-cricketer's head clean off. 'Get him! Get him with a fireball!' Will screamed as a massive outback zombie got closer and closer. Did they want to try? 'No way!' Will laughed at the ridiculous suggestion, thinking that he had no desire to have his brains eaten by green-capped zombies. Oh dear.

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