Workplace frustration: there's almost no-one in the world that can claim they haven't suffered from this feeling at least once in their lives, if not at least once a day or even every hour. Though friction can always arise between any two or more people working in close proximity for extended amounts of time, much of the true frustration that people feel comes from up the corporate ladder, or just any superior in general.
Having a boss that doesn't push your buttons is quite rare in any employment, but luckily there are ways to vent your frustration towards your superiors without getting yourself fired or arrested. Stress balls may work to alleviate some tension; taking up boxing and pretending your opponent is your boss may also work; a more permanent and readily-accessible solution that requires the least effort however, is to give in and play a bit of Whack Your Boss. A supremely violent yet distinctively stylish flash-based game, Whack Your Boss allows you to physically beat the living daylights out of a generic boss-like character, and encourages you to do so in many ways using nothing but items in the office around you.
To the experienced gamer, Whack Your Boss's title may indicate that it is in some way similar in format to any number of quality launch games that involve smashing people into the distance such as the sublime My Dear Boss, though thus couldn't be further from the truth. Whack Your Boss isn't concerned with distance or collecting power-ups, it is merely a point-and-click affair that challenges you to find each of the 24 items in the vicinity with which you can cause grave physical harm to your boss. As you hover your mouse over the various objects in the room you will see the cursor change; when it does, you've found an item that can be used to hit your boss with. Clicking on each active item will initiate a death sequence not entirely dissimilar to the fatalities in Mortal Kombat, though a little more basic and more applicable to the average frustrated worker that is annoyed with their superior.
The game's appeal is the generous number of death sequences that you can discover just by exploring the screen a little with your mouse. There are 24 ways to kill your boss in total, each of them being very entertaining and able to bring at least a small grin to your face, if not a wide smile or even some flat-out laughter. Though many of the ways shall be left up to you to discover, clicking the bin will start a sequence where your boss does some generic complaining before your character picks up the bin and smacks him around the head with it multiple times, spraying blood all over the room yet leaving your boss alive and complaining still before he is smashed to death with the bin and left to slump on the floor whilst you simply put your earphones in and press the 'cleaner' button to trigger a man entering the screen to wipe the slate clean and allow you to start with a blood-free environment - it's like no murdering ever happened! Each of the death sequences is reminiscent in some respects of the atmosphere created by the memorable film Office Space which sums up office like almost to a tee.
Aside from the many items to utilise as weapons such as the golf club in the corner, the desk light, the clock on the wall, and many more to be discovered, the game's distinctive black-and-white sketch design adds a little artistic touch and perhaps negates from the horrific nature of the beatings that are laid down on the boss character. Each of the death scenes is made even more memorable with the spattering of blood all over the place, with this being the only thing that appears in colour in the whole of the game.
The sounds are pretty decent as well, and there's a piece of music that takes over when activating the vase-based death scene which is highly amusing. In all, Whack Your Boss is one of those whacking games that isn't challenging or skills-based, but it is a whole lot of fun and could save your job in the long run as well. If your into this sort of point and click stress management game then you’d be spoilt for choice with more titles including a follow up sequel by Box10 – Whack Your Boss 2 which provides a fun super hero angle on the series.