Have You Played… Dr. Langeskov, The Tiger and The Terribly Cursed Emerald: A Whirlwind Heist?

Have You Played? is an endless stream of game retrospectives. One a day, every day of the year, perhaps for all time.

A delirious and witty post-Stanley Parable statement of intent from William Pugh’s Crows Crows Crows – twenty minutes long and no-pennies in price, you have no excuse not try it.

Where The Stanley Parable, a semi-comic first-person exploration of games, gaming and gamers, took a few steps into darkness and several more into self-reflection, Langeskov effectively takes the position that all of this stuff is very silly indeed and wouldn’t it be better if we all just laughed along with it? Even two years on, I don’t feel I should give any more away about Langeskov than that.

It is, like Stanley, primarily about rounding the next corner and waiting to see exactly which rug will be pulled from under you and it does, like Stanley, feature a narrator who is in equal parts friendly, antagonistic and comic. In other words, it is indeed a little familiar. But it’s really about spending a few minutes laughing at narrator Simon Anstell’s gags and enjoying a fairground ride full of very silly surprises.

There aren’t many studios that would chuck something like this out for free, for a laugh – to say hey everyone, let’s have fun together. And then maybe, just maybe, have a tiny little think about the expectations we place upon videogames.

21 Comments

  1. Lars Westergren says:

    I did, thanks to your recommendation, and I had a lovely time. Several laugh-out-loud moments.

  2. Halk says:

    Just tried to download it, but it seems to be Steam-exclusive, which is a little odd for a free game.

    • vorador says:

      If my eagle vision doesn’t betray me, its running on the Source Engine like Stanley Parable. And to use Source Engine, what do you need to install?

      Steam.

      • b00p says:

        it’s made in unity according to the internet

        • Catterbatter says:

          And Source doesn’t require Steam. And Dr Langeskov etc isn’t Steam exclusive.

          • Halk says:

            Indeed, Source does not require Steam, for example there is a DRM-free version of the Source engine iteration of Dear Esther.

    • antszy says:

      Well I guess you’ll just have to ruin your computer/life entirely and suck it up and install Steam.

      • Halk says:

        “Fortunately” my backlog of DRM-free games is so long that I will never have to do that in my entire life.

        • antszy says:

          Yeah, I was just playing Parkitect for example. Fun little early access take on Theme Park. It’s DRM-free and I bought it on Steam.

    • buschap says:

      No Steam required. DRM-free and $-free download on Itch: link to crowscrowscrows.itch.io

      • Halk says:

        Awesome!

        That link was not on the Crows Crows Crows homepage, so I did not find it. Thanks a lot for pointing it out!

    • welverin says:

      I say it makes perfect sense If it prevents you from having to pay for servers or bandwidth.

  3. bill says:

    Personally I didn’t find it funny and didn’t think it did anything interesting. Not half as good as The Stanley Parable demo.
    But hey, it was free so I’m not complaining.

  4. Chorltonwheelie says:

    In hands other than Crows Crows Crows this could have been excruciating self indulgent tosh.
    As it is, with Anstell’s help, it’s a thoughtful and witty little piece that’s easy to spend some of your time with.
    I would if I were you.

  5. Premium User Badge

    particlese says:

    Yup, and glad I did! Some predictable stuff inside, but lots of surprises and good humor all around.

  6. Scrap Princess says:

    It was the game that made me stop trying these kind of games.
    Consider if , once you had finished the first bit , you got to go back and be the sucker on the other side of the stage , and had to deal with the results of all your dickery.

    I know it’s against the grain of the joke “There’s This Great Thing But You Never Get To See HAw Haw” but that joke is tired anyhow, and the sudden switch of “oh shit I actually get to play that ” then “oh no I’m the guy I was just missing with”

    • GeoX says:

      Yup, things sure would be completely different than they are if they were completely different than they are. Um.

  7. caff says:

    I thought it rather wonderful and insightful.

  8. Premium User Badge

    Serrit says:

    Yup really enjoyed this – agreed that at the price you can’t complain! I still can never roll the full name off the top of my head when required though…

  9. Jalan says:

    This is confusing – is his name Simon Amstell or Simon Anstell?