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Video Game Review: Girp, Slightly Less Hopeless Than QWOP


In QWOP, you experienced firsthand what it would be like if you were a series of uncooperative midgets stacked on top of each other inside a suit of human flesh as you competed in an Olympic track event. Or, at least, that’s what it felt like. Maybe I read too much in to that game to come up with a reason for why QWOP’s legs flared out frantically and independently, as if each were attempting their own personal escape from their fleshly confines of the meat suit.

But QWOP was soooo 2010 (even though it came out in 2008). It’s 2011, and the creator of QWOP has brought us a new game, called Girp. Girp, much like QWOP, can suck it so hard and with so much vigor that it makes sucking the proverbial It uncool, because no one thinks they can suck it harder than QWOP and Girp can suck it.

So, instead of playing as what appears to be a hunk of silly putty wrapped in human flesh, like in QWAP, you play as a shirtless, shoeless, mountain climber who has greatly overstated his ability to climb stuff. Highlighting his ignorance of his own physical abilities are various challenges that threaten to get in the way of your climb up the seaside cliff, like rising sea water, and a seagull that refuses to give a f*ck about your life.

It must be said that like with my review of QWOP, this is only a review of the first half of the game. Or maybe it’s ¼ of the game. Or maybe it’s 1/16th. I have no idea. Truth is, I may never know how long the game is, because I’ve only made it 9.7 meters up the Cliffside. So there could be 1,000 meters worth of cliff scaling, but I think at around meter 20 or so the game triggers an aneurism in your brain and you drop dead instantly — you die never knowing how many meters you were until the end of your rock-climbing journey of suck.

The best way to explain the game is to show you the game. Here’s a screen cap.


See all of the golden rings with letters at their centers? Every time you hit the corresponding letter on your keyboard, the cliff climber reaches for that brass ring. So, let’s say you grabbed ring M with one of your hands. You look around, search for the closest ring that will move you up, so you push F on your keyboard and you grab ring F. You have to keep holding the F and M keys down or you will let go of the ring and drown. On top of that, to make the climber flex his muscles to bring himself closer to a ring, which makes grabbing a new ring much easier, you have to hold down either the left mouse button, Ctrl, or Shift. All of this results in your fingers contorting and cramping like it’s a deranged game of Twister an arthritic serial murderer will be forced to play for all eternity once he starts burning in hell.

My biggest problem with the game is my own brain. In my life I’ve always found that if my hands are exceptionally messy or busy performing an action, my brain will tell my face to get really itchy, as if purposefully f*cking with me; as if my brain wants me to smear BBQ sauce all over my nose and forehead as I eat ribs; or allow my victims a chance to fight back as I strangle them two-handedly. If you, too, experience oddly-timed face itchiness, then you will probably experience plenty of itchy moments during Girp. You’ll find your fingers awkwardly contorted and misshapen, yet you will not be able to move them from that position lest you ruin all of your advancement up the cliff. But then your face starts itching, so you’ll move your face in closer to your keyboard to give yourself a soothing scratch with one of your free fingers. If you’re doing this in an office, to your co-workers you will look like you’re desperately trying to eat out your keyboard’s vagina while tweaking its nipples.

Licking Keyboard

Overall, Girp isn’t nearly as difficult as QWOP. By that I mean after 15 minutes of gameplay you will have advanced somewhere beyond 0 meters of progression. That doesn’t mean it isn’t a hunk of shit in terms of gameplay; it is. But that’s what makes these games so much fun and so damn addicting. QWOP and Girp are games that are so bad the fun comes out of trying to figure out if you can even make them work, even though, from the start, you know the inevitable conclusion you will come to is, “Oh, they don’t work. It’s a designed to be an unintuitive piece of shit.”

Alright, enough typing. After all of these words and 40 minutes of playing Girp, my fingers feel like I’ve actually used them to lift weights or build a deck or any number of other activities that don’t involve sitting on my ass and playing a ludicrously shitty game for an extended period of time.

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