While Twitter users joke that the social media platform is on the verge of death and deletion thanks to Elon Musk’s mismanagement, game developers have taken this opportunity to make a final confession, an absolution of all their design sins. It started with one senior character artist working on Overwatch (opens in new tab) admitted to hiding “abstracted versions of Loss in older projects”, and went from there.
Other developers confessed to similar loss-related crimes against video games. For anyone who’s been blissfully ignorant of the Loss meme thus far, it started when the mediocre video game-themed webcomic Ctrl+Alt+Del took an unexpected turn for the dramatic with a miscarriage comic. The attempt to add emotional weight to a gamers-on-a-couch gag comic was so ridiculous that people chronically torment each other online with minimalist yet recognizable interpretations of the four panels (opens in new tab) up to the present day.
And that’s why there is one Loss operation on an alligator in Maneater (opens in new tab)a full one level in Super Meat Boy Forever that refers to Loss (opens in new tab)and a Lose meme “the size of a cruise ship” somewhere in A Hat in Time (opens in new tab). Hide loss edits in textures and tile sets (opens in new tab) is a recurring theme of the thread, as well as hiding other images and animations bananas (opens in new tab) or the Naruto flight (opens in new tab).
Like an image in a texture that no one will ever notice, many of the “sins” aren’t really that sinful. For example, by agreeing to reduce reloads and make speed improvements in Far Cry 6 never do (opens in new tab) would make you a hero in the eyes of many. Likewise the champion tester who noted that in The Witcher 3 when Triss rotated 180 degrees “her breasts kept shaking for 15 seconds” and filed a ticket to make that boob move (opens in new tab). Or the writer on Guardians of the Galaxy (opens in new tab) responsible for characters calling an alternate name suggested for their team was Stardust Crusaders, referencing an arc of JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure.
Other recordings are the kind of delightful dev hacks reminiscent of Fallout 3’s subway car is actually a piece of clothing fitted onto the player’s hand. Here’s a perfect example: in Outer Wilds, the player does not move (opens in new tab), the whole rest of the universe does, because moving and aiming are smoother. And in Outriders, there’s a wildfire scene but no fire spreading system, so a poor designer had to write a script “about 600 plants to catch fire individually” (opens in new tab).
However, not everyone is without sin. May the Lord find it in his heart to forgive the monster who gave in, “I’ve been working on Bubsy 3D.” (opens in new tab)