Occasionally I come into my European colleagues have had a relatively quiet day. Other days I come in and someone tells me they’ve seen something so eccentric, so wonderful that I immediately think,”I gotta check this shit out.” In this case, it was my boss telling me he had only discovered that the developers of The Stanley Parable had made a 90s-esque browser MMO set in a dance club.
It’s just titled The Club. If you had told me this time Yesterday that I would be checking out a match such as this, I’d have told you to put off the MDMA and let me return to guzzling my java.
The studio described it in the announcement newsletter as”a mission-less, non-competitive, online music listening match (it is an MMO).” And it is hard to argue with these semantics.
Curiosity appropriately piqued, I entered the match — that can, by Crows’ words, be performed in almost any browser for free — and instantly had to turn down my volume. Being put in a nightclub, the musical thuds I could hear from the starting area set my head pounding. Serves me right for going clubbing with a sinus infection.
The titular Club is a eye-watering combination of flashing lights And pink walls bedecked with images in searing colour. It looks like something somebody threw up after gorging themselves on Starbursts and Pixi Stix. The music is apparently a community project, having been cobbled together using a sample bunch of club beats. Oddly enough, I could not tell you that the difference between it and real club music, but I really do understand my back teeth haven’t stopped shifting.
There are a few other areas you can research, especially a Sketchy-looking backyard area that reminds me of some very uncomfortable college celebrations. The bathroom also allows you to look at your avatar, if that is something you like to do. There’s a primitive talking tool that allows you spout phrases at your fellow club-goers, from easy hellos to”I know the proprietor of the place.” It is a bizarre, strangely absorbing 90s throwback, and that I can’t tell if I really like it or am only hypnotized by the scene.
I don’t often find myself a truly odd duck of a match, but The Club is that. Test it out here, if you prefer.