Plumbers Don't Wear Ties

Moby ID: 25730
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Description

John is a plumber who is looking for love. He's looking in the house of the blonde Jane who has daddy issues. He's always been pretty successful before. And this situation looks to be one where John will be able to lay some pipe and unclog some stuffed passages.

Plumbers Don't Wear Ties is an "interactive story" dating simulation. After a video introduction, Players are treated to photographs of various people and places while characters voice act the situation. At times, John will be able to make a choice of his next action, from a list of choices at key locations in the plot. If John is successful, he'll move into an amorous relationship with Jane. If not, the two will be pulled apart.

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Screenshots

Credits (3DO version)

35 People (22 developers, 13 thanks) · View all

Produced by
Directed by
Written by
Starring
Stock Car Instrumental by
  • Triple XXX
Music Scored by
Computer Programming by
Programming by
Artists
Photography by
[ full credits ]

Reviews

Critics

Average score: 12% (based on 5 ratings)

Players

Average score: 0.9 out of 5 (based on 20 ratings with 3 reviews)

Is this a game?

The Good
Honestly there was nothing to really like, not even simple things like the title screen where the slightest bit enjoyable.

The Bad
The game begins with a nice full motion video of "Jane" talking about the objective of the game, from this you initially expect the game to be in video. You begin the game and suddenly that decides to stop! You know have what is essentially a slideshow of random images, put through messed up filters, a few with a Panda driving a go cart (What?), and even sometimes the floating head of said Panda.

You continue through the game and make choices from a small list and the best choices give you points, while the worst choices use up your chances. If you fail, I don't know, 3 times then the game makes you beg for another turn! It's truly humiliating! Who would beg for another turn at something like this, I mean, it's not even a game, its purely a slideshow! The only "Interactive" part of this thing is the menus and even then you do not have much at all to do! You just select what you want, and there. You have played, no, watched "Plumbers Don't Wear Ties". Good job!

The Bottom Line
A Slideshow, that's all it is! A retail slideshow with a story written by someone who obviously watches too many bad sitcoms, terribly arranged and filtered by a colour blind five year old.

Even if you have a huge 3DO collection, i would stay far far away from this game, there are plenty other enjoyable games like Gex, and an actual GOOD full motion video game Wing Commander, go spend time playing those instead of wasting your life with this.

3DO · by Chris Jeremic (152) · 2010

A Slide Show

The Good
Plumbers Don't Wear Ties has the well-earned distinction of being one of the worst video games of all time.

It is an interactive dating simulation with very little in the way of interactivity. Whenever you are given an set of choices, it is clear what the right option is (in order to advance the story) and choosing the "bad" option results in a brief change in the story, before the player is told to go back and select the right choice.

It is an interactive movie, with very little in the way of full motion video. Aside from a brief introduction, the entire game is actually a series of still photographs with voice over.

The still photographs are not good photographs, but images that seem like they were put together by someone who didn't know how to use a camera.

The dialogue contains a fair amount of profanity and sexual innuendos, but seems like it was a film student's rough draft. Beyond the bad writing, the tone of story is very off-putting.

The story basically involves a man and a woman being pressured by their respective parents to get settle down and get married.

John is an attractive looking plumber (who wears a tie) and Jane is lovely looking lady going to a job interview (I think she is a secretary, but its not really important to the story).

These early scenes would seem to suggest that the story is going to be a semi-realistic, romantic comedy. This is not actually the tone of the game's story.

The game has, at least, three different narrators who (in addition to fighting each other like cartoon characters) read the on-screen options and censure you for making bad decisions.

The fight sequences between two of the narrators seem more appropriate for a classic WB cartoon. The other narrator does not appear, but reads the on-screen options.

Jane's father (the actor also plays one of the narrators) seems less like a character in a romantic comedy and more like a bitter parody of someone's rich father.

Thresher, the businessman who might offer Jane a job, acts like a poster child for sexual harassment lawsuits, who suddenly transforms into a possible murderer and a gay man.

The Bad
Yeah, one of the more unusual bad endings in the game involves Thresher (who has been chasing Jane in the parking lot) suddenly going gay or, perhaps, bisexual.

While the crazed businessman is chasing Jane, the player can decide to pick the "politically correct" option.

This causes the businessman to start flirting with John, who suddenly admits to be "confused", and ends with the two men going off together to meet John's mother.

Neither man is identified as being gay or bisexual before this scene occurs, and before you think that the game is trying to be progressive, this is just one of the many bad endings in the game.

When the scene ends, the player is taken back to where their made the "politically correct" option and, presumably, can now choose the more heterosexual option.

To win the game properly, you need to get to the "Hollywood Ending", where the creepy businessman is put in his place, and John takes Jane on a motorcycle ride.

While this is the proper ending in the game, I am not entirely sure that this qualifies as a, Hollywood Ending.

Jane does not believe that John is a plumber ("plumbers don't wear times") and I doubt very much that Jane's wealthy father would be pleased that his daughter is dating a blue collar man. Maybe this was a setup for a sequel that, thankfully, never came to be.

The Bottom Line
Plumbers Don't Wear Ties (1994) tosses in profanity, sexual innuendos, homosexuality, prostitution and (with a password) nudity to try and obscure the fact that the game looks, sounds and plays like it was designed by amateurs.

3DO · by H.M. (7) · 2016

One of the Worst Games Ever

The Good
Honestly, it is hard to find one good thing about this game.

The Bad
The game begins with a decent full motion video clip explaining the object of the game. Everything after that is a series of still photographs with voice over.

The 3DO would have been more then capable of doing the entire game in full motion video, but instead the game takes place through a series of still photographs, some of which are not even decent photos.

The voice over acting is simply atrocious. The romantic storyline is boring, features sloppy film editing and the unexplained appearance of various strange people acting as some sort of referee should you make the wrong choice.

In any event, few choices are given to the player and it is pretty easy to determine what choices will move the storyline along.

Heck, even as an "adult" video game it is pretty tame by the standards of a television show or motion picture.

The Bottom Line
I suspect that one day, someone got it into their idea to make a video game for the 3DO with very little money, creative talent or technical resources. The result was this game.

3DO · by ETJB (428) · 2010

Discussion

Subject By Date
PC version found! Patrick Bregger (300247) Apr 10, 2017

Trivia

FMV

Despite being advertised as a full motion video game the game is only still pictures.

Nudity

A secret code allowed the player to see some nudity (John's butt and Jane's side boob) during the shower sequences. Without the code, these parts of the body are covered with on-screen censorship icons. The PC version is uncensored by default.

PC version

A PC version was reviewed by some magazines, including PC Gamer UK (3%), but it never surfaced. In 2017 the YouTube user psychoticgiraffe found a copy of the Windows 3.1 version in a library (Indiana) and released it online. It has the copyright year 1993, higher audio quality and does not include the video introduction by Jane.

Awards

  • Electronic Gaming Monthly
    • November 1997 (Issue 100) - ranked #4 (Worst 10 Games of All Time) (3DO version)
  • PC Gamer
    • May 2007 - #1 in the "Must NOT Buy" list

Analytics

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Contributors to this Entry

Game added by Atom Ant.

Windows 3.x added by Sciere.

Additional contributors: Alaka, LepricahnsGold, Patrick Bregger, Micro Net, Maner76, H.M..

Game added December 30, 2006. Last modified September 16, 2023.