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Archive for Retro Game

Dec
03

Bones Season 5 Episode 9 “The Gamer in the Grease”

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It’s game on for Booth and Brennan. After two painstaking weeks, Bones returns tonight with a case that takes our favorite dynamic duo to strange new world— a world that forces them to become freaks and fanatics in order to solve the mystery that is “The Gamer in the Grease.”

Brennan and Booth are called to investigate the remains of a competitive gamer discovered in a grease truck, and they eventually learn that the victim, Steve Rifton, is the only active player known in the gaming community to have received a perfect score on a famous video game. A little side note: Bones creator Hart Hanson reveals that they had to design their own retro game called Punky Pong, which you can see and play for yourself when the game is posted on FOX’s website after the episode airs.

Going into the episode, we learn that Steve turned his success into a profitable business with a gaming referee and charged fans to play on the very machine that gave him the perfect score. Now, the Jeffersonian teams must narrow down the many suspects with motive for ending Rifton’s reign as gaming king, while looking into sour business deals and bitter competitors.

Quite fittingly, this episode also finds Hodgins, Sweets and Jeffersonian intern Colin Fischer (guest star Joel David Moore) as they take turns camping out for the movie premiere of Avatar, which is set in a virtual reality world that co-stars Bones recurring player Moore as an on-ship technician overseeing avatar transference.

“The studio wanted us to do some kind of cross-over,” producer Stephen Nathan explained to TV Guide. “So we designed a whole story that kicks off with Sweets [John Francis Daley] meeting a girl in a movie line.”

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Nov
27

Bones – It’s Game On

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Bones executive producers Hart Hanson, Stephen Nathan and story editor Dean Lopata invited me over to their offices on the Fox lot to play an old school video game they had designed for their Dec. 3
episode, “The Gamer in the Grease.” Inspired by the documentary, The King of Kong, the episode finds Brennan (Emily Deschanel) and Booth (David Boreanaz) delving deep into the cutthroat world of competitive arcade gaming. I say “cutthroat” because the opening scene’s discovery of a gaming champion’s corpse is quite possibly the show’s most gruesome image to date. Without spoling it for you, lets just say Brennan’s disappointment that the body still contains its skin is short-lived.

The producers tell me that Fox asked them to conceive an episode that would help promote Twentieth Century Fox’s holiday release, Avatar, a film set in a virtual reality world that co-stars Bones recurring player, Joel Moore (Colin Fisher) as an on-ship technician overseeing avatar transference. “The studio wanted us to do some kind of cross-over,” explains Nathan. “So we designed a whole story that kicks off with Sweets (John Francis Daley) meeting a girl in a movie line.”

The movie the characters are going to see, not surprisingly, is
Avatar. The episode finds characters playing 80’s style arcade games. Getting the rights to established games like Pac Man and Donkey Kong, Hanson explains, “would have cost a fortune, so we had to design our own retro game that looks like it came out in the 80s.”

The game they designed, Punky Pong, is so easy that a monkey can play it. Heck, even I managed a high score by blocking a steady flow of
bananas, mangos, pineapples and raspberries from sneaking past me. And I somehow was able to keep focused on the game despite Hanson’s constant screaming in my ear, “Don’t let the banana hit you!!!”

You’ll be able to see (and play!) for yourself when the game is
posted on fox.com after the episode airs. And oh — watch out for those bananas. They cause shrinkage.

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