Everyone get out of your seats, it’s time for some exercise! “Grooaaaannnnnn…” Okay, okay, relax. I mean virtual exercise with QWOP, a browser game. It’s a very simple game granting the use of only those four keys to control the legs of a runner. The goal – complete the ten and 100-meter dash without tipping over like a blind drunkard. Today we’ll go for the full workout by covering both, starting with the easier of the two and working our way up to the burn.
Almooosssttt… got it! Sure it looks like a matter of just pressing the right buttons in the right sequence, but there are a few other factors at work that throw a monkey wrench into that plan. Soldatmesteren not only reaches the ten mark just in time, he has the good sense to apply the runner’s face as an emergency break after all that effort. Wouldn’t want that extra momentum to pop a tendon. Now that we’re all warmed up, it’s time for the real workout. On your marks, get set… go!
If it wasn’t clear before, it should be now. QWOP is difficult to master, in part because the button controls are counter-intuitive, part due to the ragdoll physics, and part because of one little question: which part of which leg to start with? If you’re very good, you may even get your runner to do a backflip onto his neck by complete accident. And now that I’ve said it, you want to see it happen, don’t you? Don’t worry, I wouldn’t dream of putting together a QWOP article without a fail compilation. Enjoy.
By the way, it most certainly is possible to successfully flip and land on your feet in QWOP. I’ll let you find that one on your own. And after you finally get bored running the 100-meter dash, you can run the Gauntlet instead.
Matt Eschbach is a PC, Mac and Android indie game developer and fiction writer. His works have won multiple monetary awards from various contests. Graduating college in 2012 with a major in Game Design, Matt spends his time making stuff up and then building it. His favorite hobby… is sleeping.