ASCII by Jason Scott

Jason Scott's Weblog

Zero Punctuation —

If you’ve not heard of it before, there’s a “web feature” out there called “Zero Punctuation”. It’s basically a once-a-week video segment from a fellow named Yahtzee, who wrote a few adventures but is also, apparently, blessed with one of the best wits in the universe.

You don’t need to have played these games he talks about in his segments; you possibly don’t need to have played many video games at all. Instead he whips up, regularly, a beautiful and damning blend of biting sarcasm, deep cuts, and soaring highs into a five-minute animatic that leaves you truly breathless.

It is so good, it’s worth starting from the very beginning (an attack on the Sony game Heavenly Sword) and playing each segment twice to see all the details. He does one of my favorite narrative tricks, saying one thing but showing another and having the two points blend into an even funnier third point. That kind of work is rare these days and Yahtzee does it in episode after episode.

You even get to one of my favorite situations, where something goes by and it’s so clever that you end up pondering it, and by that time he’s made two more points and you’re desperately trying to keep up and you fail, forcing a restart from a few seconds before the first point. That’s not annoying, that’s breathtaking. Keep up, kiddo.

The episodes have a really annoying ad banner on them that you need to dispel and which doesn’t entirely go away, but even with that little lameness, the brilliance of the work shines through. Bravo.

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  1. Mark Siegal says:

    These are seriously awesome, and thanks for the tip. Even when he occasionally compliments a game (like Portal), his attitude and wit are a pleasure.

  2. Church says:

    Actually, Yahtzee was on youtube for about two minutes before the Escapist scooped him up. The very first one he did is here:

    Wholeheartedly agree with your assessment of him.