10 most iconic word games in video games
Video games are havens of creativity. The interactive medium gives people who develop, program and design games an outlet to express their deepest and most exciting ideas. Naturally, some of the best of these ideas are any pun the developers can come up with.
Game makers regularly (and luckily) find places in their games to add cheeky puns. They can be right there in the game title, or they can be hidden in a character’s name. No matter where they are, gamers know they will especially love to meet them at some point in their time with almost any game.
Mario & Luigi: Partners over time
Mario & Luigi: Partners over time was the second game of the Mario and Luigi RPG series, released in 2005 for the Nintendo DS. In this game, Mario and Luigi find themselves in the strange situation of having to go back in time and team up with their children to save the Mushroom Kingdom. This storyline is what sets the game up for its puny and perfect title.
It mixes up the phrase ‘partner in crime’ with the game’s time travel theme. And with ‘partner in crime’ expressing the idea of close friends who find themselves in all kinds of trouble together, it is a perfect match for the two sets of Mario brothers.
Miles “Tails” Prower
In the Sonic the hedgehog series, Mile “Tails” Prower is Sonic’s young fox friend. With his high IQ, penchant for machines, and his two tails that give him the ability to fly, Tails has proven to be an invaluable friend and ally during Sonic’s many adventures.
What a lot of people miss out on about Tails, however, is the clever speed-centric pun in its name. “Prower” is a portmanteau of “by” and “hour”. Combined with her first name, Tails’ name is based on “miles per hour”.
Ratchet & Clank: On the way to the commando
Ratchet & Clank is a series of action-adventure games exclusive to Playstation consoles. The series has been around for almost 20 years and one of its enduring traits is its use of the pun. The majority of the game’s subtitles incorporated semi-coarse wordplay of some form. It’s a tradition that started with the second game in the series, Ratchet & Clank: On the way to the commando.
Go Commando introduced many improvements over its predecessor. One of them was the emphasis on upgrading weapons. This focus on weapons allowed the developers to use a common idiom to play a joke and emphasize the importance of artillery.
Crash Bandicoot 4: It’s Time
Crash Bandicoot 4: It’s Time is the long-awaited sequel to the original trilogy of Crash Bandicoot Games. It closely follows the same gameplay mechanics as the original games and features a story that follows the events of the third game in the series. In it, Crash and his friends must stop Doctor Neo Cortex and the other villains from tampering with the space-time continuum.
The title of this game is a play on words that plays on the history of its development. Fans have been waiting for a proper follow-up from the first three games for years. “It’s About Time” refers both to the years fans have been waiting for and the fact that the story of the game is literally about time itself.
Joanna Dark is the protagonist of the sci-fi series Dark perfect. In these first person shooter games, the player controls Special Agent Joanna as she completes her top secret missions for the Carrington Institute. Joanna Dark fits the classic “femme fatale” character type thanks to her combat skills and character design.
To match its capabilities and portrayal, the developers gave it a name that resembled the French pronunciation of Joan of Arc, “Joan of Arc”. Joan of Arc was a prominent historical figure and heroine during the Hundred Years War.
Crypt of the NecroDancer
Crypt of the NecroDancer is a rhythm-based dungeon robot with a lot of emphasis on musical themes. This is evident from the title of the game, which refers to the antagonist, the NecroDancer. The NecroDancer is a wizard who controls the living dead, that is, a necromancer. He also controls them with his musical enchantments, which is where the “dancer” part of the name comes from.
Additionally, the protagonist is a female named Cadence, a term that refers to a sequence of notes in a musical arrangement. Gamers can find word games in almost any part of this smart indie game.
Rayman: Rabbids was a board game and a launch title for the Nintendo Wii in 2006. It was supposed to take advantage of the Wii’s motion controls, to help present them to the public. And while that wasn’t his original intention, he also started along Rabbids series, which features the titular rabbit-like creatures.
The name of the rabbit is a combination of “rabbit” and “rabid”. They combine to highlight the creatures’ design inspirations as well as their frantic and aggressive demeanor and personalities.
Kirby’s Epic Thread
The Kirby The series is known for including a lot of playful humor in its games. With this game having for theme that everything in the world is made of thread, Kirby’s Epic Thread was the only appropriate title. In Kirby’s Epic Thread, Kirby and his friend Prince Fluff must save Dream Land and Patch Land from the evil wizard Yin-Yarn.
Yin-Yarn is the one who turns Kirby and all of Dream Land into yarn. “Thread” has two meanings. It can refer to the fabric, but it can also refer to the story of an adventure. This game was Kirby’s epic thread back and forth: it was an epic tale on the thread.
The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds
The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds is the 2013 sequel to A link to the past. It follows many of the same themes, character and art designs, world layouts, and storytelling elements – and also follows a similar naming convention. The premise of this game involves Link transforming into a 2D painting so that he can slip through the cracks of the reality of his world and travel to another world, in order to save Hyrule.
In doing so, he will also save the parallel world realm of Lorule. The title is both figurative and literal: Link himself is between two worlds and has also created a connection between them.
Octodad: the most papal capture
The most beautiful of captures is the sequel to the 2010 independent title Octodad. In this original title, players control the titular Octodad as he tries to complete tasks in the game’s home settings. The problem is, he’s a cephalopod, not a human. Helping him perform the most basic functions takes more effort than most players might expect.
The deadliest capture is a reality TV show that chronicles the life of deep sea fishermen. The combination of the Octodad with the title of the show makes a fun and absurd comparison between the difficulty of being a deep sea fisherman and controlling the aquatic Octodad.
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