Plumbing is around us in every day life. From the obvious taps, sinks and toilets to the less obvious waste and heating systems that run under the floors and through the walls. Everyone who’s ever enjoyed video games has known plumbing in some way shape or form. If you’re not jumping through a pipe to travel between worlds, you’ve been hacking systems and using a wrench for more purposes than simply tightening a loose nut. Today’s a day that celebrates and recognises how important plumbers are to keeping the world flowing nicely. What better way to recognise that than with some video games?
The mascot – Mario
Mario is arguably the best known plumber in the biz. He’s such a well known Japanese mascot his iconography appeared in the closing ceremony of the last Olympic games to signify the transfer across to Tokyo 2020. You can buy any amounts of merchandise with his face on, he turns up in multiple other video game franchises and now will even have some ties with Lego! You could argue that Mario Sunshine with its FLUDD system to clean up sewage is the best way to celebrate his work but literally any mainstay title of his includes warp pipes and at least one water level. Every Mario game is the most obvious choice to celebrate the craft of pipework.
The never ending job – Bioshock
A plumbers work is never done and this is very much the case in Bioshock. The entire city of Rapture is frozen cold one minute and boiling hot the next. Springing leaks all over and needing constant attention to stop it collapsing entirely. Entirely like any kind of boiler that you’ve had to call out an engineer for. The entire Pipe Mania hacking mini-game is just the washer on the cap. What better excuse to sink back into the murky depths and plug some splicers before the Big Daddies wreck what little is left? You might even learn something about yourself along the way. Now would you kindly take a moment to go back to this classic.
The small job that never ends – Control
We all know this sentiment well, “it’s just a quick job, won’t take long” Then one thing leads to another and you’re ripping out tiles, pulling off wood and finding that the little problem is actually just the surface issue of a huge underlying ungodly mess that really needs a complete overhaul. Most cleaning jobs in Control start out small and like the Witcher 3 or Mass Effect 2 within a few minutes the realization sets in it’s going to take a lot longer than the start implied. The journey to a resolution is a long one but thankfully the pay off is always worth it. Even if that result is just a break in the Bahamas.
The fantasy – Sims 4
Fix any leaks yourself! You don’t need any training, any skills or any experience! Just click on yourself, click on the problem and with a magic wrench the problem is resolved by itself! Although the idea that you could fix a problem such as a busted tap just by waving a wand is very appealing but you still need to clean up after so don’t get too carried away. The fantasy that you don’t need to plan out any pipes or waste to have a toilet, shower or bath in any room makes the Sims a winner. The toilet next to a fridge is a bit strange but have you ever try lugging a toilet up a flight of stairs?
The classic – Pipe Mania
Ohhh nostalgia how I love thee. Essentially a unique Tetris-like puzzle game where the aim to score big rather than “clear” a level. Pieces drop down from the left chamber as you place them and you have to make a line as long as possible while the water is flowing. You can’t rotate or do anything more fancy than panic. Nothing has quite planned out how you wanted and you still want to go back for more. Still incredibly addictive and time consuming. A perfect IP for any publisher to potentially breathe life back into. The nostalgia hit from a perfect plumbing puzzler.
Let’s just be ready for the 25th April, Hug a Plumber day.
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