Mods and Maps: Plunder & Pillage.

I have a very stream-of-conscious sort of thinking. I’ll be in the middle of something — watching a video, listening to music, playing a game — and suddenly think about something related to what I’m doing right now, like information on a movie or song. It happens to me very often, leading to me going on weird tangents about silly stuff.

For example, last week I was watching a video of someone playing a game called Quest for Bush. In it, you play a soldier where to infiltrate a terrorist base with the ultimate goal to kill George W. Bush, while various Arabic music played. In reality, it’s a hack made by the Global Islamic Media Front and actually went under the name Quest for Saddam, where the goal was to kill Saddam Hussein in Iraq, complete with bad jokes and bringing down the statue of Hussein. Quest for Bush aka Night of Bush Capturing was released in 2006, three years after Quest for Saddam‘s original release.

Once I finished watching the video, my stream-of-consciousness went into effect, and I started looking into the game chronology of Jesse Petrilla, the designer of the game. Quest for Saddam is a remake of Quest for Hussein, a Build engine total conversion where you do the same thing as Quest for Saddam: Find Saddam and kill him. Even a few levels are redesigned from Quest for Hussein. Before those games, there was Quest for Al-Qaeda, then Plunder & Pillage, both made under the Build engine.

Wait, Plunder & Pillage? That doesn’t sound like an terrorist-killing game at all. That’s because it actually was a shooter where you played as a pirate, and was Petrilla’s first foray into game development.

It’s quite an interesting mod. Quoting the description:

You are Capt. Jess Murdock, a renegade pirate who has lost everything in a shipwreck on the high seas. You wash up on the shore of an island inhabited by pirates of other gangs, you must fight your way through the island, and plunder and pillage all that you can in an attempt to regain what was lost and make a name for yourself as the most feared pirate on the high seas.

This isn't Blood caliber level design, but it's probably better than most fanmade levels.

This isn’t Blood caliber level design, but it’s probably better than most fanmade levels.

Yeah, it’s a simple game, this isn’t Deus Ex levels of story complexity, this was made in 2001 after all. After I downloaded Plunder & Pillage and gave it the proper tweaks for it to work in DOSBox — don’t expect a source port to support this abandonware — I stepped into the boots of Jess Murdock, “arrrrrr”ing like the rest of them. I start with a flintlock pistol and a cutlass sword, which I can use any time like the quick kick in Duke Nukem 3D, and eventually pick up a blunderbuss and an explosive crossbow, all reskins of existing Duke Nukem 3D weapons. Even a fair share of the models were cribbed wholesale from Duke and other games like Blood, Shadow Warrior, and others.

Oddly, Jess handles the sword with two hands, even if he's holding another weapon. Methinks our matey shouldn'tve went down Davy Jones' locker...

Oddly, Jess handles the sword with two hands, even if he’s holding another weapon. Methinks our matey shouldn’tve went down Davy Jones’ locker…

Alas, Plunder & Pillage is a short game. About three levels were completed, and as far as I know the only version available is this three level demo. Once September 11th happened, Petrilla completely switched gears and made Quest for Al-Qaeda, and you know the rest. At least Plunder & Pillage still lives on in those games: He never bothered to change the melee weapon, and the quick kick still shows “arrrrr!” when you activate it in either Quest game.

Least our guy's holding his M16 one-handed. Should've gotten that third arm checked out.

At least our guy’s holding his M16 one-handed. Should’ve gotten that third arm checked out.

If you’re interested, you can check these mods out yourself at the DOS Games Archive: Plunder & Pillage, Quest for Al-Qaeda: The Hunt for Bin Laden and Quest for Hussein. These are standalone executables and do not require any Build engine game to run, but they still have holdovers from Duke Nukem 3D. Legally, I bet 3DRealms could’ve sued this guy, but it probably wasn’t worth the hassle.

Even so, all three of these Build engine games are decent, short affairs. I blazed through all three of them in about 20 minutes each, and while they’re not anywhere as good as similar Build engine games like Duke Nukem 3D or Blood, they’re worth a quick look. If you can look past all the bad jokes. I played these mods more times than I should and I might be brainwashed, these could be terrible games in reality, so you might wanna take these with a grain of salt. Now I’m gonna go play a palate cleanser, like Redneck Rampage. Glad there’s no references to terrorists in that game…

(Update 9/28/2018: Updated links and removed an embed of a video that no longer exists.)

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B.J. Brown

B.J. Brown is the creator and sole writer on You Found a Secret Area. Casually writing since 2010, Fascinated by dumb things like game shows, music, and of course, video games. Also on Twitter. You can support their work on Ko-Fi or Patreon.

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