Rebel Spy

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Wildcard Stream Vol 43 - Star Wars Software

A long long search finally gives us a pleasant ZZT Star Wars experience! And some so-so ones.

Authored By: Dr. Dos
Published: May 12, 2023
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♦ Livestream of 4 ZZT worlds. ♦

♦ Stream Contents ♦
• (0:00) "SW Software #1" by StrWarsNut []
• (12:53) "SW Town" by StrWarsNut []
• (41:20) End of Ad Break 1
• (41:20) "SW Software #2" by StrWarsNut []
• (2:33) "Rebel Spy" by BrGenWreck (1995) []

We've made it an entire year since the last batch of Star Wars ZZT fan games got streamed. Last year, I realized that despite the sheer volume of Star Wars ZZT worlds that hadn't seen the light of day in decades, not a single one of them was all that good! So I've been dreading this month ever since.

And yet, these four aren't so bad. I suppose if you want a Star Wars game done right, you need to get one published under "Star Wars Software".

Firstly a magazine showing off boards from upcoming and already released Star Wars Software product, chosen as SW Town was available for streaming. As a ZZT magazine, it's pretty empty, and surprisingly harsh with rating the author's own releases poorly. It does at least give us a glimpse at titles that were either canceled or remain unpreserved. A shame, as I would have loved to play the one starring C3PO and showing his perspective of the events in A New Hope.

We then moved on to SW Town, and got the baffling design. Infiltrate the stormtroopers by putting on a halloween costume. Purchase a copy of the script to the classic trilogy. Get a part time job wrapping candy in what I can only assume is supposed to be an I Love Lucy reference? It's goofy, often in ways that don't feel intented to be. Yet because it played itself straight unlike the countless "Puke Pielocker blows up the Chef Bar with the help of Princess Heya and Han Dodo" levels of low-effort parody it ended up being a compelling enough adventure.

Which leads us to the next issue of SW Software. An explosion of new members quickly got everyone's attention, though the board depicting them offers no information as to who any of them are. Those who know their mid-90s ZZT authors will recognize Barney9651 on the list though! Sadly, C-3POSW.ZZT is also revealed to be canceled.

THEN THE STREAM EXPLODED. Some bizarre tech issues happened and so I'm splitting this into two videos as I had to restart the stream. Technically there's a third video between them that's like a minute long, but I ain't bothering with that.

The final game, "Rebel Spy" is by a new member of SW Software, one who genuinely seems to understand what they're doing. Your task as Agent Smith (no not that Agent Smith) is to infiltrate the empire to be assigned onto the imperial ship "Usurper", and destroy it. What follows is an honest to goodness decent Star Wars ZZT game where you get shot down by the imperials, march to the nearest town, lie about your identity to get a position on board the Usurper and complete your mission. It's still nothing brilliant, but it is significantly better put together than what I've come to expect from mixing ZZT and Star Wars together. There's no reason the two shouldn't work, and this game final proves that it's possible.

Though for some reason it too has a candy-wrapping job, albeit one to box up some more reasonable blasters instead. Also a restaurant where you can get attacked by gangsters. But these non-sequiturs are just silly side areas and not really a part of the main story.

♦ Play these worlds directly in your browser ♦

♦ Originally streamed on May 7th, 2023 ♦

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