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Old 06-11-2003, 16:22:36   #10
Resource Consumer
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Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Al Khobar, Magic Kingdom
Episode 4.

Scene – Brian’s Office. Present – Brian, Sid, Jeff.

SM : Well that didn’t work too well did it?

BR : Assholes.

JKM : All I did was tell them that they should be grateful that we put all the bugs in.

SM : Seems a lot of people are really pissed off about it. They just don’t understand us.

BR : We’re going to have to rescue this PR disaster. I’ll put Tim onto it – an interview online about SMACX should do the trick nicely.

SM : Is that wise Brian?

BR : Why?

SM : Well we have all this furore about bugs and we are going to counter with an interview with someone who insists on being called Tim Even-More-Bugs.

Enter Tim

TEMB : You called?

BR : Yes. Tim, can you set up an online interview. You know the usual crap. A few crumbs about Alien C ….Promise them the moon and….

SM : Give them Alpha Centauri?

JKM : Give them CIV again?

BR : Absolutely, Jeff.

TEMB : OK, I’ll get on with it.

Exit Tim

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Tim is sat at the computer. Brian, Sid and Jeff are in attendance.

TEMB : (types) Ready when you are. Oh…first question.

BR : What’s it say, Tim?

TEMB : We understand that Alien Crossfire is sort of "your baby". Who from the SMAC team is also working on this?

BR : Is he kidding? We’re just gonna stamp this out the door and see who falls for it.

SM : Tell him we are putting all our intellectual firepower into it. The same quality team that brought out BIGMAC

TEMB : Next. “How did you come up with the name Alien Crossfire? Was it just a coincidence that it has the same initials as SMAC? In the end, what should we call it to differentiate it from SMAC (Alpha Centauri, that is)?”

BR : Differentiate it? Well there’ll be more bugs of course.
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The next week.

BR : Jesus. I just don’t understand these guys.

SM : What?

BR : We send Tim out to talk to them and tell them all about the goodies that we are going to put in it.

SM : Yes?

BR : And they still whinge. They think Tim’s saying there’s no bugs in it.

SM : Well he is isn’t he.

BR : Yes...er...No. Look, we know there are bugs in it. Lovingly crafted ones, ones that bring a smile to a crying child, ones that glow in the dark - all sorts. We have done this so subtly there are even bugs within the bugs. But these are not bugs in that sense – these are features. The assholes just don’t get it.

SM : So, what do we do Brian? This is turning into a real PR disaster.

BR : We bring out the heavy hitters.

SM : Who?

BR : Jeff again. But this time we go for the sympathy vote. Let’s make the people love him.

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Scene Brian’s office. Present Brian, Sid and Jeff.

Jeff is typing at the computer.

JKM : OK. Ready. First Question.

BR : OK.

JKM : What made you get involved in QA ?

BR : OK. Jeff, type this.

JKM : Ready

BR : “I needed a job to support my poor blind invalid mother and my eight children. I also wanted the opportunity to become a game god by working with a genius like Brian Reynolds”

JKM : How long have you worked in the QA field?

BR : “We at FIRAXIS are a civilised company. We make many facilities available to our staff. We have a water cooler, coffee machine, hot and cold running European secretaries. We even have an indoor bonsai garden looked after by one of our up and coming game designers. We do not make the staff work in a field”

JKM : Brian, as a matter of interest, what’s QA?

BR : Something computer people talk about. It probably stands for something dumb like Quorn Angst. I’ll ask Deidre she should know.

SM : Perhaps it’s Question Answering?

BR : Yes, that’s it – and us three are the Question Answering team. Huh, the dumbos thought they’d catch us out with that one.

SM : OK, next question.

JKM : Is there something about Firaxis' staff or setup that you feel makes them a good QA team?

BR : They're really into this QA crap, aren’t they? OK, tell them this. “We have two of the true Game Gods, who are good at answering questions. We also have Jeff Morris and Tim Train who do interviews and answer questions. In fact generally we are excellent at answering questions.”

JKM : Do you find it easier to test a strategy based game compared to other genres?

BR : Stuffed if I know. Any ideas, Sid, Jeff?

SM : Just waffle Jeff.

JKM : I’ll talk about bugs

SM : What have you written, Jeff

JKM : “Since working on BIGMAC, I have learned a lot about bugs. “

SM : Profound, Jeff.

JKM : Here we are, last question. How would you define Quality Assurance?

BR : OK. Try this, Jeff. “Quality assurance is what I say it is. I assure you of the quality”. Now ask them, if they want any info about Alien Cowshed.

JKM : Yes please, they say.

BR : Typical. They come running back for more. Well, tell them they’ll have to wait – we are currently in negotiations to make BIGMAC really big.

SM : This is new on me Brian?

BR : Sid, you and I need to talk, there is something I must tell you......

Cue mysterious music

FIRAXIANS - the story of a games company that thinks big and talks too much.

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Episode 5.

Scene – Brian’s office. Present – Brian and Sid.

SM : OK, Brian, let’s hear it?

BR : OK. Sid, what’s the best way to knock out a few more bucks from BIGMAC

SM : The sequel?

BR : Nope

SM : Making the customer pay for enh….patches

BR : No. In fact, I have this idea to make them pay for patches that don’t do anything at all.

SM : Brilliant idea Sid. Will they fall for it?

BR : Of course. But there’s more.

SM : Yes?

BR : Merchandising.

SM : Merchandising?

BR : Yeah. I had the idea here late last night. You know, I sleep here, now don’t you?

SM : Brit Babe and the Scandibird still holding out on you?

BR : Afraid so. Well, I was here alone and feeling kind a lonely and….well look at this.

Brian opens cupboard and removes a lifesize inflatable doll.

SM : What’s that for?

BR : If you don’t know now Sid, you never will.

SM : I mean, what relevance is it to us?

BR : Well, I was missing Deidre and…. Then I got the idea

SM : What?

BR : Inflatable Deidre dolls.

SM : Will that work?

BR : Yes, but we need expert help. Have you seen my two new staff members?

SM : You mean the new secretary in the Union Jack minidress and the guy in the black mask with asthma and the fluorescent light tube?

BR : That’s right. These guys are experts at spin-off merchandising. We’ve already got loads of spin-off products ready to roll.

SM : Like the Deidre sex-doll?

BR : Right

SM : What else?

BR : Santiago BDSM gear, Zak glasses, Lal turbans, Morgan Savings Accounts and….

SM : Yes?

BR : Yang pot noodles.

SM : Brian, we won’t get away with this.

BR : of course we will. It’s the oldest trick in the book, I’ll prove it. Look at these.

SM : What are they Brian?

BR : Miriam’s fingers.

SM : But what do we do with them?

BR : We sell them as holy relics

SM : But she’s only supposed to have 10 Brian – you’ve got a whole boxful there.

BR : The cust…er..assholes will never notice.

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Episode 6 :

Scene Jeff and Tim’s Office

JKM : It’s getting a bit crowded here these days

TT : Well, it’s Brian’s Harem I suppose – means we have to double up. Don’t you think that three secretaries is a bit much and that new guy in the mask scares the hell out of me.

JKM : I think we should have more. I hear Brian’s auditioning some more to act as the new faction leaders. Should be fun? I’d like to have a go at being in the game as well.

TT : You. Can you act?

JKM : Well, I can do impressions.

TT : OK, go on.

JKM : OK. “You dirty brother you killed my rat”

TT : That was the worst James Cagney I’ve ever heard.

JKM : No, that was my brother talking to me after I started in the pest control business.


TT : You don’t have much luck do you – your brother’s rat, Brit Babes bonsai tree.

JKM : Believe me – the tree was far worse.

TT : Do you still have all that protective gear?

JKM : Don’t use it now that we put all the smiley bugs into the game. If I do need something, I Improvise.

TT : How?

JKM : I’ll show you

Takes paper carrier bag out of his desk and puts it over his head.

JKM : Can you now tape up the bag and tape up my sleeves. Tightly and….

TT : OK Jeff, will do.

Tapes it up very tightly seriously restricting Jeff’s movements

TT : That’s really very good, Jeff, you won’t have any problems there. Shouldn’t you have some holes for your eyes?

JKM : mmm mm mmm

Enter Brian

BR : Jeff, what are you doing?

TT : He’s showing how he improvises with protective clothing.

BR : But that’s brilliant.

TT : What?

BR : The alien faction. We’ll use Jeff with a bag on his head. Hey, he can do the voice as well. Come on let’s tell Sid.

Exit Brian and Tim

JKM : mm mm mm mmmm mmm mmm

Walks into furniture and falls over rubbish bin.

JKM : (thinks) Wonder what I’d look like in leather?

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