Postal III: New Footage, Little Controversy

By John Walker on August 18th, 2010 at 1:04 am.

No new screenshots in three years. Sigh.

Postal III has been a touch delayed. In development since before 2006, we first mentioned it in 2008 when it was revealed it would include a badger as a gun. A couple of months later, during 2008′s Leipzig, the most remarkable video of footage was released, with the developer apparently not too impressed with his own game. Jump forward another year, March 2009, and we had a new trailer showing some third-person action. Yet another year goes past, little is heard, and that brings us to now. Two new trailers have been released, and they are of course below.

Postal is of course more famous for being the game the Daily Mail thinks all games are, rather than for any outstanding quality. There’s undoubtedly something remarkable about a development team willing to portray the sorts of action present in the previous games, and how can you not call someone over to see yourself chop off a neighbour’s head with a shovel, set it on fire, throw it for a dog, and then piss on the dog once it’s covered in flames. Kieron called me over to his flat to see exactly that back in 2003. And then showed me Postal 2.

But after what will be at least an eight year gap (the game is suggested as being the first quarter of 2011 now), and a film that bombed at the box office, it’s going to be a struggle to convince people to remember all over again.

Peculiarly, the second trailer below shows the game offering what it suggests are alternative moral pathways. Which doesn’t seem quite in keeping with the Postal theme of wanton, mindless violence and bad taste. However, take a closer look and, phew, everything’s as normal.

Developers Running With Scissors have significantly cleaned up their website since last year. Previously we couldn’t link to it without a “NSFW” warning. While there’s still plenty of scantily clad women to be found there, they are now at least clad scantily. It’s a strange page, filled with restaurant reviews, articles about US troops at war, and a section dedicated to their pets. Finding information about the game: not so easy. The game’s previous site has now vanished.

Anyhow – enough of my confusion with them. Here’s a trailer showing the main character visiting a therapist, which demonstrates the boldly unsubtle humour that defines the series:

And here’s a very strange sequence showing the game’s apparent alternative moral pathways. You can either choose to be “bad”, and murder everyone in this mall protest scene. Or you can choose to be “good”, and just kick the protesting women in their stomachs, sending them flying across the floor. Um.

It’s odd to have left in shots of the AI messing up quite so badly. The cops blankly staring, not firing at our player until they’re dead, don’t bode well. Let alone that none of the endlessly repeated characters react to being shot at. But more crucially, after at least four years of development, surely there’s a more interesting scene to show us than this one? For a game made in Source that has badger guns.

__________________

« | »

, , .

89 Comments »

  1. anon says:

    Controversial games I’d actually want to play:

    “Baby Delivery Simulator”
    (Who’s ready for an Episiotomy?)
    A realistic simulation of helping a mother give birth.
    3 playable classes:
    Obstetrician (location: hospital)
    Midwife (Location: at home)
    Taxi Driver (Location: in the back seat)

    The player is presented with a wide array of situations and birthing complications that need quick and wise judgements to be made. Graphics are a detailed and accurate as possible.

    “My Brothers Keeper”
    Stealth-espionage-rpg-adventure-altar-boy-simulator game
    You play an altar boy in a catholic church. You must navigate the policies, personalities and church politics around you to stay safe from potential predators while trying to identify and gather evidence agains any and all members of the church (not just the priests) who may be child molesters. All this while protecting your mentally challenged little brother who assists with another area of the church.

    There are times when you must choose between keeping an eye on your brother, or following a suspect, or sneaking into a priest’s office looking for evidence while he’s at mass. You might plant a spy camera. But how do you pay for it? Get a job mowing lawns, leaving your brother unsupervised at sunday school? Steal from the collection plate? Steal from the envelope box in the secretary’s office?

    Lots of moral choices. Do the ends justify the means? Is your brother really “slow” or is he suffering from some kind of post-traumatic stress? Was he already a victim?!?

  2. Ozzie says:

    threw instead of through.
    That was a homophone confusion, heh.

Comment on this story

XHTML: Allowed code: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>