Note: Suicide is not funny. Hyperbolic expressions of boredom that lead to lighthearted fantasies of suicide sometimes can be.
The Premise: There are few people in this world that don’t have the right to say, “Work sucks.” Those lucky folks can just go ahead and move along. For everyone else, stay tuned.
If you’ve ever read a Dilbert cartoon and been able to relate, if you consider the move Officespace a manifesto for your professional life, if you’ve ever felt like the only thing missing from your workspace was a giant water bottle with a gravity valve and a nice layer of newspaper on the bottom, this is the game for you.
You, my dear little slaves to the cubicle, you, my fellow under appreciated grunts, will instantly know the pain exhibited by our little hero here.
You, too, know that breaking point: “If I get one more goddamn meeting I’m going to kill myself.”
And then it happens, you get another meeting.
Only, in the real world you sigh, you go to the meeting, you get off work, and you drink yourself into an oblivion. In this game, you follow through with your threat.
How it’s done: The controls for FMTKY are as simple as they get. You use the arrow keys to guide your fed up little office drone over an isometric board, and you use the space bar to interact with various items.
Items that can be interacted with are easy to find as they typically have green arrows pointing to them. Most items you come across in the game can be used to do damage to yourself; once you’ve done one hundred percent damage, the game is over, and you win.
If you’re still alive after five minutes is up, a fate worse then death awaits you.
There are other ways to hurt yourself available to you. Talk to your coworkers. From what I understand, you can convince every coworker you can speak to to hurt you, but some conversations are trickier than others. These conversations are done using multiple choice, selecting your response with the space bar.
Also, there are combination items laid throughout the office as well. You can pick one item up, and then your task is to figure out where to use it. These often produce significantly more damage than those simple office items laying about, are usually more creative, and are therefore well worth your time.
Finally, don’t forget that you can use the elevator and go through some doors, so the cubicle habitat is not the ONLY path available to you.
ANALYSIS: Five Minutes To Kill Yourself is exactly the kind of offensive game you would expect from Adult Swim, home of Alan Probe: Amateur Surgeon. Indeed, it’s the naughtiness that really makes this game so appealing. Suicide is not a hilarious subject, but who hasn’t had a day so bad at work where you haven’t jokingly thought, “Just shoot me?”
As such, it is the deeply dark humor that truly drives this game. It’s greatest strength is the creativity that has gone into the many different ways to do yourself damage, from wearing a pinata and letting officeworkers beat the living hell out of you, to the very divine hand of God coming down to smite thee… complete with “bling”.
The graphics are simply, cartoony, and used to near perfection. I think it’s the button down style juxtaposed with the massive violence and blood that truly gives the game that extra bit of zing. Adding to the overall effect is a musical score that sounds more like you’re covered in camouflage in the middle of the hottest of hot zones.
Now that I think about it, what makes the dark humor work is the foundation of ironic humor that it rests upon.
On the other hand, the game does come with its downsides, the most predominant of which being the controls. They’re simply too mushy for my liking. Your movements are blocking and unresponsive, and, as is the case with many isometrically aligned games, it’s often difficult to pinpoint your character’s location with the target you are trying to interact with.
That being said, as the name implies, the longest any one game can go is exactly five minutes, making this an almost perfect casual experience. Coffee break time comes along, you kill yourself for five minutes, then you go right back to work.
You should come to appreciate FMTKY for its deeply cathartic experience. Barring that, it should be worth at least a few solid laughs.