My fetish for FMV games began with this PlayStation classic.
Take note collectors and retro gaming enthusiasts: thanks to personal experience and scouting Reddit boards I learned something interesting upon trying to play The X-Files Game. Typically, I employ my ps3 to play all of my old ps1 discs. It always works seamlessly, has unlimited memory and between the three PS2s I already have and the one Ps3, it’s one less system I have to swap in and out. It is all around pretty convenient.
BUT ENTER STAGE LEFT: THE UNIVERSALLY LOATHED DIVA DISC.
For those of you interested in growing your PlayStation collection be warned – The X-Files Game is not playable on either a PS3 or even backwards-compatible PS2s. The FMV sequences play fine – but any of illustrated prompts (door opening, movement, investigative) all become illogical glitch blobs. That also goes for your inventory, action commands – everything, making the game completely unplayable. So, before you go out and pick this bad boy up make sure you have a working PS1 to play it on! Or maybe emulate it. Olive Unicorn suggested that but I’m, one, too dumb to figure that out, two, lost the link she sent me and three, just like holding the game case in my hands. I like physical copies of everything.
I’m old school, I guess. Get off my lawn and all that.
Anyways. on to the site’s first Full Motion Video game! A trend that has basically disappeared from all formats but PC nowadays and I wish that it hadn’t. To ten year old me in the late nineties FMV games were the future. I mean, how else could you make games look better than, “Movie Production” quality? “It’s impossible!” My ten year old self yells at you, “Impossible!”.
If you are unfamiliar with the television show the game is based on, I’ll leave this hilarious fan fiction page description here for you because it essentially nails the premise of the real show.
The X-Files was a hugely popular American television show in the 90’s that followed two F.B.I. agents, Fox Mulder and Dana Scully (played by David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson). The agents tracked down supernatural mysteries for the bureau. If you have never watched it, I highly recommend it. I wanted to be Fox Mulder and marry Dana Scully growing up. But that’s just me. You might just think it’s an O-K show and that’s fine too.
You play as F.B.I. Special Agent Craig Wilmore from the bureau’s Seattle branch. Craig is pathetically 90’s cop stereotype. Separated from his wife because he just “works too much”. Looking at a photo of your wife and daughter does trigger a really cool Twin Peaks copycat soundtrack though. So that’s the best part about his personal life.
Your typical F.B.I. day is interrupted when you are called into your Branch Director’s office and met by Assistant Director Walter Skinner. He is in Washington because two of his top agents have gone missing in the Everett, Washington area. You partner with Skinner to investigate their disappearance.
Developed by Hyperbole Studios and published by FOX Interactive (No One Lives Forever, The Simpsons Hit & Run, Futurama) the game was released for PlayStation October 13th 1999. The game was a commercial success especially in Japan and Europe but was almost universally panned by critics.
Some heartless bastard even said (about The X-Files Game) “…that even the best FMV adventure games still aren’t great games” and sadly he’s right. Even if I don’t want him to be. My preference for this game is blinded by nostalgia and love for the actual series. In the end, it’s a massive clusterfuck of a game even with the good writing and acting. While some parts are painfully dull, if you’re a massive fan of the series it’s still easy to overlook (most) of the flaws. Just make sure you have an original PlayStation to play it on.