A Sequel to The Gamers, Dorkness Rising is even better, like the first with all it’s rough edges smoothed off. From the first few seconds Dorkness Rising gleams with professionalism – it’s still an Indie production, for sure, but Dead Gentleman Productions have teamed up with Epic Level Entertainment to produce something to easily rival a cinematic release.
Dorkness Rising uses the same style of storytelling established in the first, switching between in-game and out-of-game perspectives to great comic effect, but this time with a different group of gamers. The plot is entirely separate from it’s predecessor so there is no requirement to watch The Gamers first. A couple of characters recur: Lodge, played by Nathan Rice, is now the DM and originally played Newmoon. Mark (the Red) also makes a cameo appearance. (Hooray!)
Aside from being very funny the plot is stronger, less predictable and the characters have more depths – we even get to see a bit of their lives when they’re not gaming. Lodge is running an adventure he created himself and has ambitions of getting it published, the problem is his players keep dying and have therefore never finished it. They decide to try again with more players but have problems recruiting presumably because Cass, the pushy powergamer, is putting people off. Nonetheless his ex-girlfriend joins the game and Lodge makes up the numbers with a GM-controlled Paladin. Their quest is to retrieve the Mask of Death which has been stolen by the evil Necromancer Mort Kemnon.
All the actors are good with top-notch delivery and excellent comic timing. I can’t pick a favourite character because they are all good, funny, memorable and necessary to the plot. Aside from those I’ve already mentioned there’s Gary, who rolls up a slutty, female Sorceress and Leo, player of Flynn the Fine, a Bard whose only interest is seducing women (inevitably their two character have sex within seconds of meeting). Unfortunately Gary sometimes forgets he is playing a woman so the part of his character, Luster, is only played by a female actress half the time, the other half it is Gary (Christian Doyle) in drag. Even more unfortunately Flynn dies all the time leading Leo to draw up 50 copies of his Character Sheet so a duplicate pops up whenever he dies and Flynn corpses litter the land.
With Cass’ ex-girlfriend Joanna as a newcomer the opportunity arises to explain rules where necessary, but never to excess, making the movie very assessable to gaming virgins. The jokes come thick and fast with innumerable references to geek culture including cult films, tv shows, comic books, computer and board games. It parody’s gamer stereotypes and common issues of contention such as Role-play versus Roll-Play, Railroading versus exploration, and alignment (I’m not evil I’m Chaotic-Neutral!)
The Gamers 2: Dorkness Rising is an everful purse that keeps dishing out pure gold. It has good re-watch value because there’s no way you’ll spot everything the first time. It has Pirates, (everything’s better with Pirates!) Zombie-Ninjas, (Are they Zinjas or Nombies?) and unexpected plot twists (Stupid cat). When playing D&D we’re always quoting this; it resurrects the franchise from the grave Dungeons & Dragons the Movie buried it in. Wizards of the Coast ought to be worshipping it’s cute little tushy.
Unmissable. Full stop.
Dead Gentleman Productions has officially stated that they will be making The Gamers 3.
If you like Jen Page (female Luster) and Brian Lewis (Cass/Monk) then you should check out a new webseries Dirty Do Gooders that they are both in.