Thing-Thing

Thing-Thing

Thing-Thing is a series of two-dimensional action games in the vein of Vectorman and Abuse [ [http://diseasedboard.proboards75.com/index.cgi?board=thingthingdiscussion&action=display&thread=1026&page=2#71572 Diseased Productions Board - Wikipedia Article ] ] , its initial continuity spanning four games with at least three spin-offs, developed by Diseased Productions founder Sean "Weasel" McGeeCredits, Thing Thing 1.] . The games are somewhat notable for being written entirely in Adobe ActionScript [ [http://diseasedboard.proboards75.com/index.cgi?board=gamediscussion&action=display&thread=928&page=2#64211 Diseased Productions Board - Endless Zombie Rampage ] ] , despite being much more in-depth than other flash games of its era.

Plot

The story of Thing Thing follows the Gamma Class Bio-Weapon, Project #154 as he awakens in a containment cell. According to internal retroactive continuity, 154 forcibly kills by hand a doctor who had arrived to administer muscle enhancers and behavioral suppressantsThing Thing 4 introductory cutscene.] , seizing his victim's pistol and shooting the ceiling vent off of his cell [ Intro cut scene, Thing Thing 4.] . He proceeds to kill the four guards in the service hallway, slaughtering his way to the surface. However, he is halted by Poseidon, a bio mechanical experiment apparently assigned to prevent escape- a short-lived affair, as 154 quickly puts down Poseidon and makes his exit into open air. During his escape he learns of the identity of the faction that held him- SystemsCorp, a company with the slogan "Innovating Life" [Various billboards and posters in the SystemsCorp offices, Thing Thing 4.] , hinting at their involvement with genetic engineering- and the other two bioweapons out to kill him, Zeus and Hades. [Research Terminal: "Gamma Class Bio-Weapon, project no. #154 has been reported missing. It has broken through all security in the main research center and has even broken through the defenses of the Alpha Class Bio-Android, 'Poseidon', one of the 3 elite weapons this facility has developed. 'Zeus' and 'Hades' have been deployed to search for the weapon. Our experiment is to be considered extremely dangerous and is to be terminated on sight. If you are able to disable the experiment you are to contact Headquarters immediately."]

Ostensibly, this is where the story of Thing Thing 2 begins. 154 wanders into a city where he encounters countless SystemsCorp mercenaries who, though mostly unarmed, endeavor to stop 154 by force. He escapes the city, wandering into a desert inhabited by the undead which is later inferred to be reanimated individuals as a part of System Corp's experiments. Fighting his way through the sand and towards an industrial sector, he eventually meets with Zeus, another bioweapon akin to Poseidon. Destroying Zeus, 154 presumably goes into hiding. [Events of Thing Thing 2.]

154 is still in exile at the beginning of Thing Thing 3 when he receives a communicae from a mysterious source who is aware of his origins [Mystery Figure: "I know you are the bio-weapon developed by Systems Corp."] . Following instructions, 154 fights his way through Sunset City, a housing development for Systems Corp employees [Mystery Figure: "Sunset City is a Systems Corp. employee housing development, so you might encounter some resistance."] . Arriving at the agreed location, 154 meets his strange contact- in truth, Project 153, developed as a sort of omniscient armor pilot, who reveals that 154 is a form of advanced infantry designed to be resistant to hydrostatic shock [Project 153: "You were Systems Corp's bio-weapon project no. 154. I was Systems Corp's bio-weapon project no. 153. Each of our projects was developed for a specific purpose. You were developed as an advanced form of infantry. You can take the hydrostatic shock of countless bullets into your flesh with little to no effect on your physical performance. I, however, was developed as a sort of mobile armor pilot. I have heightened senses of perception(sic) so I remedy the inheritance problem with human pilots: Not being totally aware of your surroundings. I am the most powerful of the Systems Corp. bio-weapons! Prepare to die!"] . The two clash, resulting in the destruction of 153's powered armor, though 153 survives [Project 153: "Well... looks like you're the superior bio-weapon..."] . He casts 154 into a secret Systems Corp service tunnel, encrusted with ice and filled with more Systems Corp mercenaries [Project 153: "You can survive bullets, but can you survive sub-zero temperatures and a corporate army?"] . 154 manages to fight his way back towards the top, only to be cornered by 153 again, who has not only trapped 154 in a biowaste disposal facility but has revived an artifact from within- the Hades prototype, Vahl Dreig [Project 153: "I may not be able to kill you, but I think I know someone who stands a pretty good chance. I dug him out of the bio-waste disposal area. His name is 'Alpha class bio-mech project no.1053' or 'Vahl Dreig' for short. He's the Prototype for 'Hades'"] . Despite this daunting task, 154 makes short work of the prototype, only to be reminded that he is still trapped in the containment chamber. [Project 153: "...I'm impressed, I didn't think you'd make it through that one. No matter, though. I always plan ahead. You're caught in a bio-waste containment chamber. You can try and escape, but Systems Corp. really likes reinforcing their walls with steel. Maybe someday I'll bring the real 'Hades' model in... or maybe I'll just let you rot in there... well, I really must be going. Do enjoy your stay."]

Thing Thing 4 starts only moments later, recapping the events of the three previous games through animated cutscenesbefore 154 retrieves the core that powered Vahl Dreig, commenting on the volatile nature of bio mechanical weapons before using the device to destroy the steel-reinforced walls [Project 154: "The energy core that powered the Hades prototype... they stopped using these because they were too unstable and explosive. Looks like I may have a way out of here after all."] . He escapes into the incinerators, where he fights his way through legions of trained Systems Corp soldiers. He eventually escapes into the offices and, having resolved to kill off the management of Systems Corp and gain revenge [Project 154: "I'll have my revenge on whoever created me. Nothing is going to stop me."] , storms into the management branch of the building. However, there he is confronted by 153 again, this time with a small army at his back [Project 153: "Looks like you made it out of the holding cell after all. And not without a staggering death toll at that... but as you can see, this must come to an end." Project 154: "You didn't bring enough firepower." 153: "We'll see. Kill him."] . 154 escapes the building by jumping out of a window ["It's time to die, 154! You can't run any more!"] , landing only to find 153 in pursuit piloting an assault helicopter. However, 154 commandeers a nearby vehicle, using the Heckler & Koch HK21 found within to shoot out 153's fuel tank and destroy the helicopter. 153 is presumed dead in the crash [Thing Thing 4, level "Boss: Project 153"] Project 154: "153 is dead... at least that's one problem out of the way. Looks like Systems Corp's secret genetics lab isn't far from here. That's where he'll be..."]

154 decides to go to Systems Corp's genetic research laboratory in hopes of finding the CEO. There, he fights through yet more soldiers, in the process learning of experimental Systems Corp weapon systems [Thing Thing 4, level "Genetics Lab 2"] and the fact that Systems Corp is now dealing in the undead and synthetic lifeforms, as well as finding the very cell he was created in, now empty and covered with warning tape [Thing Thing 4, level "Genetics Lab 4"] . Fighting through a heavily-defended quarantine elevator, 154 finally encounters Hades in the form of a disheveled and meek individual, capable only of weak melee attacks but with great physical endurance. However, once seemingly dead Hades transforms into a large spider-like mechanical being, armed with the powerful Hades Rifle- a slow-firing but potent weapon whose shots penetrate targets. 154 kills Hades, taking his weapon and storming the final room. However, there he encounters only countless screens bearing the image of the CEO he came to kill, who sends an endless legion of soldiers to confront 154 after revealing that 154 is but one clone in an army of millions. There, 154 is shot dead, his remains scraped up and used to refine the genetic splicing process. [SystemsCorp CEO: "You were expecting that I'd be here though, were you not? Normally I would be. But given the trouble you've been causing, I thought I'd get to safer ground. So here you are. You're defeated every soldier and weapon we've thrown at you.... You've proven your genes in the field... you just need some behavioral tweaking so that our potential buyers aren't at risk.... I estimate that you have no interest in returning yourself to our cause. This, however, doesn't give you the upper hand. You're just a clone. You're not even the original. You're just one of hundreds of experiments that are just like you.... and whether or not you're alive won't affect my business or my sentiments one bit. I'll just kill you where you stand... and my engineers clean up what they need to make another."]

Overview

The Thing Thing series is four games long as far as story. Its two spinoffs, Thing Thing Arena and Thing Thing Arena 2, are unrelated to the continuity of the game's storyline, as is another spinoff, The Chronicles of Stinky Bean.

The first iteration of the series was designed as a tech demo, displaying the game's customizability. A tenet of the Thing Thing series is that all characters are totally customizable, able to choose from several variants of hair, clothing and in the later games shoes and facial features. The first game also set the game's focus on weapons, the series using for the most part all real guns- save for when not applicable, such as the experimental Brain Drill or Laser Cannon. Its sequel went on to put forth the standard for gore, as the game is incredibly bloody- a facet expounded upon in the third and fourth versions, where the dismembered remains of enemies remain on the battlefield long after their deaths.

The two Arena games are based largely on the games that preceded them, despite being unrelated- Arena uses the Thing Thing 2 engine, and Arena 2 loosely uses Thing Thing 3's code. The two games are focused mostly on survival modes, in which swarms of endless enemies spawn and leave ammo and power ups on death, the objective being to rack up a high kill count. Players are able to submit their scores, which are tracked by best daily score and overall records- a feature which made its way into the later games in the series.

Though not officially linked to Thing Thing, The Chronicles of Stinky Bean features a Stinky Bean, a character found in one of the survival modes of Thing Thing Arena. Stinky Bean is tasked by Scatmonkey to fetch numerous items and defeat bosses, and his last task is to fight and destroy a rogue Thing Thing character in a city covered in Systems Corp billboards. The presence of Stinky Beans in the Synthetic Lifeform chamber of Thing Thing 4 is dubious- though somewhat of an in-joke among the game's community, Scatmonkey does refer to having 'created' the Stinky Bean in Chronicles, and it is likely that Systems Corp would create a legion of cheap cannon fodder to hunt down 154.

Gameplay

The gameplay of the Thing Thing series has remained fundamentally faithful to its roots throughout its installments, with all games featuring side-scrolling two dimensional shooting. However, there have been drastic internal changes to this system between sections. The first game was a series of screens, which the player would progress through by walking over the edge of each. The second game instead opted for a full scrolling system, with the foreground dynamically moving with the player. It also featured a higher emphasis on obstacles with doors requiring a certain number of kills to pass, and a stamina system limiting the player's ability to run and jump.

The third game was radically different from the other two. It was the first in the series to embrace vertical and horizontal movement- though the other two games had multiple levels of platforms, the screen would never scroll upwards. Thing Thing 3's levels no longer held the doors of the first, instead allowing the player to jump over large impassable walls in the style of a platformer. It also decreased the drastic recoil from automatic weapons, which had rendered the more powerful ones nigh-unusable in the first and second installments.

The most recent installment did away with limited health and healing powerups, instead allowing Project 154 to use his abilities to regenerate quickly. When the player takes damage, blood covers the screen in the shape of the Diseased Productions' logo- though a player can theoretically withstand an infinite number of bullets, too many in a short period will cause 154 to die. It also changed the weapon system, no longer allowing a player to carry every weapon with unified ammunition- instead, players carried up to two weapons, as well as a lead pipe now used in place of fists for melee attacks. The inclusion of the lead pipe has become iconic of Thing Thing to its more devout fans, akin to the Half-life crowbar.

Madness Interactive controversy

Due to the Thing Thing series being hosted at a number of websites along other popular flash games, often with seemingly similar gameplay conventions, it has inevitably been compared to other games. Its creator, Sean McGee, has already attested to the game's inspiration by Vectorman and similar two-dimensional shooting games such as the DOS game Abuse. Despite this, the series is commonly derided for 'ripping off' other games.

Arguably the most notorious of these controversies was the game's similarity to Madness Interactive, a similar 2D shooter where the player fights hordes of fodder characters. Much like the Thing Thing series' internal changes, however, differences set the game apart- proponents of the series point to Madness Interactive's less serious tone, using a conventional 'lives' system, lack of an ammo system and simplistic, minimalist designs. However, critics of the Thing Thing series point to the similarities between two-dimensional shooters as well as the characters' similar designs.

Community

Due to Sean McGee's decision to make the files for embedding Thing Thing into any site available at his website, the game's popularity has grown rapidly. Its use of real-world weapon systems, graphic gore and more adult themes appeal to a large number of people spread out among various websites and forums, and the game has consistently been nominated for front page posting on most sites it is hosted on. However, there are special features available only in the versions of Thing Thing hosted at Diseased Productions and Crazy Monkey Games, a sponsor of the Thing Thing series. Thing Thing 3 has been awarded the Gameshadow / ATI People's Choice Award, and has receieved a mention in a publication of Gamepro as One of the Top Online Games to Congregate with.

1. ^ Diseased Productions Board - Wikipedia Article 2. ^ a b Credits, Thing Thing 1. 3. ^ Diseased Productions Board - Endless Zombie Rampage 4. ^ a b Thing Thing 4 introductory cut scene. 5. ^ Intro cut scene, Thing Thing 4. 6. ^ Various billboards and posters in the SystemsCorp offices, Thing Thing 4. 7. ^ Research Terminal: "Gamma Class Bio-Weapon, project no. #154 has been reported missing. It has broken through all security in the main research center and has even broken through the defenses of the Alpha Class Bio-Android, 'Poseidon', one of the 3 elite weapons this facility has developed. 'Zeus' and 'Hades' have been deployed to search for the weapon. Our experiment is to be considered extremely dangerous and is to be terminated on sight. If you are able to disable the experiment you are to contact HeadQuarters immediately." 8. ^ Events of Thing Thing 2. 9. ^ Mystery Figure: "I know you are the bio-weapon developed by Systems Corp." 10. ^ Mystery Figure: "Sunset City is a Systems Corp. employee housing development, so you might encounter some resistance." 11. ^ Project 153: "You were Systems Corp's bio-weapon project no. 154. I was Systems Corp's bio-weapon project no. 153. Each of our projects was developed for a specific purpose. You were developed as an advanced form of infantry. You can take the hydrostatic shock of countless bullets into your flesh with little to no effect on your physical performance. I, however, was developed as a sort of mobile armor pilot. I have heightened senses of perception(sic) so I remedy the inheirant problem with human pilots: Not being totally aware of your surroundings. I am the most powerful of the Systems Corp. bio-weapons! Prepare to die!" 12. ^ Project 153: "Well... looks like you're the superior bio-weapon..." 13. ^ Project 153: "You can survive bullets, but can you survive sub-zero temperatures and a corporate army?" 14. ^ Project 153: "I may not be able to kill you, but I think I know someone who stands a pretty good chance. I dug him out of the bio-waste disposal area. His name is 'Alpha class bio-mech project no.1053' or 'Vahl Dreig' for short. He's the Prototype for 'Hades'" 15. ^ Project 153: "...I'm impressed, I didn't think you'd make it through that one. No matter, though. I always plan ahead. You're caught in a bio-waste containment chamber. You can try and escape, but Systems Corp. really likes reinforcing their walls with steel. Maybe someday I'll bring the real 'Hades' model in... or maybe I'll just let you rot in there... well, I really must be going. Do enjoy your stay." 16. ^ Project 154: "The energy core that powered the Hades prototype... they stopped using these because they were too unstable and explosive. Looks like I may have a way out of here after all." 17. ^ Project 154: "I'll have my revenge on whoever created me. Nothing is going to stop me." 18. ^ Project 153: "Looks like you made it out of the holding cell after all. And not without a staggering death toll at that... but as you can see, this must come to an end." Project 154: "You didn't bring enough firepower." 153: "We'll see. Kill him." 19. ^ "It's time to die, 154! You can't run any more!" 20. ^ Thing Thing 4, level "Boss: Project 153" 21. ^ a b Project 154: "153 is dead... at least that's one problem out of the way. Looks like Systems Corp's secret genetics lab isn't far from here. That's where he'll be..." 22. ^ Thing Thing 4, level "Genetics Lab 2" 23. ^ Thing Thing 4, level "Genetics Lab 4" 24. ^ Systems Corp CEO: "You were expecting that I'd be here though, were you not? Normally I would be. But given the trouble you've been causing, I thought I'd get to safer ground. So here you are. You're defeated every soldier and weapon we've thrown at you.... You've proven your genes in the field... you just need some behavioral tweaking so that our potential buyers aren't at risk.... I estimate that you have no interest in returning yourself to our cause. This, however, doesn't give you the upper hand. You're just a clone. You're not even the original. You're just one of hundreds of experiments that are just like you.... and whether or not you're alive won't affect my business or my sentiments one bit. I'll just kill you where you stand... and my engineers clean up what they need to make another."

External links

* [http://www.diseasedproductions.net Official website, featuring all of Diseased Productions' games and official forum.]
* [http://www.crazymonkeygames.com A sponsor and official host of the Thing Thing series, with a Thing-Thing History page.]


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