Attn: anyone with a Battle.net account (and between World of Warcraft, Starcraft II and Diablo III, that’s got to be just about everyone).
Blizzard has kindly bestowed upon us their greatest game for the princely sum of nada – Blackthorne.
Go to Battle.net, log in, then go to the Game Client Downloads page. Then thank me.
Blackthorne was the first game ever released by Blizzard, though the same team released three games under the awfully-cyberpunk Silicon & Synapse. Before Warcraft: Orcs and Humans set Blizzard on the path to becoming an RTS and PC development powerhouse, they developed titles for the consoles of the day, and Blackthorne originally hit just about every popular platform of its time.
Blackthorne is a platformer in the vein of the original Prince of Persia, but replace the Persians and swords with Orcs and shotguns respectively. You play as some long-haired bad-ass wearing a wife-beater and ripped jeans with a shotgun and a Big Bad to find and kill. There is some sort of story, but the Corey of 1994 never bothered paying attention to it, and in 2013 little has changed. You’re trapped in some sort of dungeon/mine and you’re heading for the surface to kill someone, and that’s all you need to know.
More important than any amount of storyline is the fact that you can fire the shotgun behind you like a motherfuckin’ action hero.
The controls are a little slow and clunky compared to the fluid movement we expect from modern games, but otherwise this is still a gem.
You’ll run and jump, you’ll shoot Orcs in the face, you’ll solve simple puzzles that usually involve blowing something up and always involve gun violence, and all along the way you’ll be praised by the buffest pixelated dudes you’ve ever seen. If you haven’t already gathered, Blackthorne is a masterpiece.
Go ahead; battle Battle.net’s overzealous security so you can access your account and give Blackthorne a shot(gun… so he can shoot Orcs… in the face… like a BADASS… I may have been drinking… earlier).