By Richard Cobbett on January 25th, 2012 at 10:26 am.
Remember BoneTown? Now there’s more. BoneCraft is a game with balls, in more ways than one. It’s not just a World of Warcraft porn parody guest-starring cast of horny Starcraft-inspired marines. No, it’s a porn parody that goes so far out of its way to flick Blizzard’s nose, its developers D-Dub even hired the actor who played Tychus “You Are Hearing Mah Voice” Findlay to be its leading man.
But can it hope to provide the hottest elf-on-elf action since Teldrassil’s finest introduced a shocked looking Azeroth to the Wrath of the Licking? There’s only one way to find out. Two, if you include buying it. But reading on will be much, much safer for work.
The surprising thing about BoneCraft is that it is actually a game – though confusingly that game is a single-player hack-and-slash rather than some kind of porny RPG pastiche. You play Colonel Fort Worth, cigar-chomping, Findlay-voiced leader of a squad of Space Wranglers, on a desperate quest for… a word I find deeply coarse and distasteful and will therefore be replacing with the far more civilised “Mrs. Slocombe”. But not just any Mrs. Slocombe! No, only elven Mrs. Slocombe, officially the sexiest, juciest Mrs. Slocombe in the galaxy, can satisfy his lust. Not that this stops him also getting balls-deep in both orc and robot flavours by the third level.
And know you know the plot. The entire plot. Um. Spoiler warning?
The action – the hack and slash action – is limp and unimpressive, but it tries hard, and that at least deserves a few points. (Right, ladies?) It’s squad based, every level bar the last being split into three rounds with assorted objectives like capturing points and protecting Worth’s devoted Sexbot from orcish attention, and a few similar things that mostly involve holding down the fire button and trying not to shout at the camera and your rubbish aiming controls.
Between missions you can upgrade your squad and equipment using money pillaged from the ground, though it’s a short campaign and any deaths you suffer are more likely to be from getting chipped to death when surrounded than being unprepared. Your arsenal of freedom ranges from the machine gun that kills everything dead and renders everything else more or less useless to… some other toys. Grenades, definitely. Oh, and a flamethrower. I think I used that once or twice, though never anything approaching tactics or more than mild caution. The campaign is over almost as soon as it’s started, and with no real incentive to revisit any of its levels. You’d really have to love gawping at the sex scenes to get your $35 out of it.
Between missions, the cut-scenes tell what little story there is – and easily the most disappointing thing about BoneCraft is how quickly it loses interest in its Warcraft parody. It gets a few sniggers, mostly thanks to the cast shamelessly and enthusiastically delivering lines like “Testicular bio-scan has detected low testosterone level, fucking me would be highly advisable”, but direct gags are few and far between. Honestly, there are so few, even the old “Rogues do it from behind” groaner might have helped. Though that might have been unprofessional, what with it already having been bagsied by that other Warcraft porn parody (Very NSFW!)
Unsurprisingly, much of the action has a depressing misogynistic tone, from the constant blather about Mrs. Slocombe to the early mission where the team rapes and pillages its way through an orc settlement on a search for – and I quote – “non artificial vagina”. Even if the ladies in question are presented as both willing and easier than a post-patch Naxx, it’s still deeply squicky – and hardly helped by the bonus objective “Don’t let Chicks escape”.
Put the two things together and what could have been a funny, sex-positive comedy doesn’t take long to fall flat. Even before it starts wheeling out eye-rollingly generic camp-gay elves (oddly jumping franchise to take a pop at The Legend of Zelda, as if the writers had run out of Warcraft material), any goodwill from the few genuinely funny moments had long since faded. I finished the game to see how the campaign ended anyway, and while I won’t spoil it, let’s just say it completely lived down to my expectations. Pity. Before firing the game up, I was very willing to have fun with it as a comedy, even expecting the sex side to be cringeworthy.
Sex in BoneCraft serves two purposes – to refill your health, and to sell the game to people who want to masturbate over their computers until they need a new keyboard. Now, I don’t want to get judgemental about this side of it. If you get your kicks by watching emotionally barren 3D models bump against each other’s knobbly naughty bits to the sensual accompaniment of the words “Oooh”, “Aaah” and “Ooooooooooh” at a variety of pitches and levels of enthusiasm, I really have no problem with that. Hell, spend your evenings writing Team Fortress 2 erotic fan-fiction if you like. It’s harmless escapism. It’s your business. Have fun.
…but damn, this is boring. The main focus is on Worth and his variably lucky ladies cavorting in the middle of the screen, with the option to switch to any position you’ve purchased between missions – mostly with names like Dildo Dog and Hair Pull and the charming sounding Standing Butt Fuck rather than, say, Cuddle Under Blanket or Ask What She Likes. It’s not interesting to begin with, and by the time the game starts handing out mission objectives like “Bone 10 elves”, it’s successfully made the very entire idea of sex seem like a tiresome chore.
Finish the game and you’re given an elf pleasure palace to go have sex with anyone you like, and buy any of the advanced positions you didn’t get around to in the main game. There’s no character to it, no sentiment, just bouncing body parts in your choice of colour. Sure, it’s still classier than the average Friday night in Goldshire, but not by a hell of a lot. The erotic fountains alone are just… ugh. Shudder. Let us never speak of the erotic fountains again.
The actual minigame consists of two bars on the left of the screen, labelled ‘Speed’ and ‘Power’. Your job is to move the blue bits to where the pink bits are, then wait until they need readjusting. Then readjust them. It’s incredibly
anal fiddly and uninvolving, and you’ve got to imagine the people of Azeroth get up to far more exciting night-time action. Serpent Spread. Steady Shot. Longevity. Fingers of Frost. You think everyone learns them just to go kill monsters?
In short, I don’t get the appeal of this at all… but then I don’t know why anyone would want to watch Ron Jeremy in a Super Mario Bros porno either. If all this sounds like your cup of tea, I recommend washing your cup out at once, you unhygienic monster. If it simply sounds like your idea of a good time though, well, maybe it will be. BoneCraft wouldn’t exist if plenty of people hadn’t bought the original Bonetown, after all. They must have their reasons.
Ignoring the almost inevitably dull sex scenes (and honestly, what else could they have done – a Fahrenheit style ‘push the mouse in and out’ minigame?), the biggest problem here is definitely the parody side. RPGs are ripe for sending up, and setting out to take a few good pokes at the genre instead of just its orc and elf ladies could have been hilarious. As it is, BoneCraft may work for Bonetown fans looking to add more fantasy to their virtual sex lives, but it’s unlikely to satisfy most regular World of Warcraft fans hoping for a walk on the wilder side of Azeroth.