Penn & Teller’s Smoke & Mirrors

If you’re skeptical about the concept of "video game lore", this will make you a believer.

In the mid 90’s, there was a game underdevelopment called "Penn & Teller’s Smoke & Mirrors".  It was never released but the product was basically finished.  It was just… well… really BAD.

But sometimes, things that are "really bad" mature over time to "really good".  This fella over at Waxy.org wrote up a whole thing about the game.

http://www.waxy.org/archive/2006/02/28/penn_tel.shtml

Also someone else wrote up a massive thread about the game.

http://archives.somethingawful.com/showthread.php?s=&threadid=1667022&perpage=40&pagenumber=1

Most of the hype revolves around a game called "Desert Bus".  The objective is to drive a bus from Arizona to Las Vegas for 8 hours.  It’s in real time so you have to play the game for 8 hours straight.  The bus needs an alignment as well so it veers to the left and if you don’t actually lean on the joystick, (in other words play) you can’t win.  

The game was designed in response to Janet Reno’s original complaints around the violence in games and how games should more accurately reflect real life.  Penn thought she was full of crap and decided to demonstrate what Janet Reno’s games would be like. 

The kicker is that after playing the game for 8 hours, you will have 5 bug slotches on your windshield and you’ll get ONE point for successfully doing it.  Apparently one kid actually did this back in the day with a pirated copy that was leaked to him.  (The game was never released)

There’s another game that’s hilarious.  It’s a racing game where the right controller ALWAYS wins.  No matter what your opponent does, you’ll always win.  And there’s a panic button that exists in the event your opponent wants to switch controllers:  It makes the opposite controller always win.

Etc. etc.

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