Back in the oft-dire domain of freeware, you may have the misfortune of encountering the horrors of Hobo Soccer. This appalling and utterly, virulently shit game is an abomination indeed. (I’ve heard rumours of unfortunate souls contracting cholera or something else Godawful just by looking at it. Having played this tripe myself, I can damn well believe it.) It’s unfair for me to suffer alone, so let me introduce you to some hobo-on-hobo action. Not the worst piece of late-night TV ever, but the most turdtastic sports sim since ancient PC title and fellow all-round-pile-of-horsecrap SkiFree.
You’re one of the two lumpen fools you see here. Sometimes, a goalkeeper on each side will show up. Usually, and rather sagaciously, he’ll decline the invitation to join these shameful shenanigans. He has something more important to do. A hot date, washing his hair, absently scratching his balls on the sofa while eating beans straight out of the tin (with his bare hands)... anything and everything beats appearing in Hobo Soccer. One of his peers may spy the fleeting appearance of his name in the credits, after all. He will then be ostracised and generally mocked for the rest of his shameful existence. (And the guy’s imaginary, mark you. That’s how thoroughly sucky this game is.) Via the eternal witchcraft of the arrow keys or W,A,S,D keys (the embarrassing younger brother of the far cooler arrow keys, receiving attention only when brother Arrow isn’t available. Poor bastards, stuck at home with a crossword puzzle and sharing the bathtub with their mother, simultaneously, whilst brother Arrow parties with supermodels) either Red Moron or Blue Moron come to life. Dancing to your Pied Piper of Hamelin puppetmaster tune, they’ll propel themselves toward the ball, in an attempt to wang it into the goal. This goes on until either player dies of exposure to such shittiness. It functions rather like the bubonic plague, in this regard. Only a little less endearing than infected fleas and multitudes of festering corpses.
The primary issue is that the physics are, for want of an earthier phrase, shot to shit. Your player shuffles around comically-yet-ineffectually, like a spider on rollerskates. On an icy surface. That’s got itself completely pissed somehow. (Don’t pretend you’ve never seen those micro-cans of Arachnid Alcohol at the supermarket. It’s quite the taste sensation. Who knew how good fly-flavour could be? Although it’s potent indeed. I have to hide it from Keith, my Tarantula. He’s an angry drunk, you see. I don’t want to come home to find he’s shat in my shoes. Again.) It’s almost impossible to aim whichever moron you’ve been coerced into playing as under threat of death. (The only reason I could fathom as to why you’d picked this diseased scrotum of a game up to begin with.) Come to that, it’s rather a challenge to even begin to predict a possible trajectory for your player at all. Once the ball itself becomes a factor, you’re completely screwed. The damn thing seems to be made of Flubber. Some crazy new malevolent Flubber, that detests you. It wants you to fail miserably. It’s determined to never allow you to score, even taking dramatic 180 degree turns of pure wtf impossibility to deny you any fleeting success. Flubber-ball points and laughs as you cry dejectedly into a pillow.
He’s a real bastard like that.
So, in summation. It looks like hell. It’s a monumental bitch to play. Taking a whole herd of middle-aged celebrities’ Botox injections straight in the balls (Bo-lox might be a more apt name in this case) would be less excruciating. The one and only possible redeeming factor is that it’s stupidly amusing with a second player. On the single occasion I played this with friends, I think I broke something important internally with laughter. (There was certainly an onomatopoeic cartoon crack! in my chest region. Disconcerting.) You’re laughing at it, not with it, that’s for damn sure. But you’re laughing far too much, and that can’t be a bad thing. Providing you aren’t attending a funeral at the time.
With all due trepidation, I provide a link to download the game. Approach only in full biohazard regalia.
Finally, some farcical footage of Hobo Soccer from Youtuber BorisKnoT, for you to revel in eternally:
Article by Chris Littlechild
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