Toronto’s greatest contribution to music is a band named Pup – short for graffiti found at Sneaky Dee’s reading “pathetic use of potential”. However, their videos have been anything but pathetic. Pup’s done everything from immortalize beloved pets with Finn Wolfhardanimate a legendary tour, put frontman Stefan in a demolition derby, to an 8-bit video. But the new video for “Old Wounds” takes the cake.

It’s an old-school, live-action video game! Now nerds and punks can forever feast in the Valhalla that is the “Old Wounds” video game. 

It’s honestly a genius concept. Using click-through links in the video, viewers play out the “Old Wounds” story. There are four difficulties with one for each band member: Nestor (easy), Steve (medium), Zack (hard), and Stefan (impossible). 

The goal is simple: you’re Pup’s tour manager and you have to get your chosen member of the band back to the hotel safely. It can be harder than it looks. Let’s dive in.

Level 1: Nestor

Nestor’s mode was the most #relateable. He says “I have the best plan.” His plan is to go to sleep at the hotel, eat some food, FaceTime with his girlfriend. His idea of getting “crazy” is watching TV. He’s my kind of dude.

But that doesn’t mean his level is boring! Oh, no. Instead his level teases what’s to come. Playing as Nestor, you can ignore a call from Zack and receive one from Stefan, who’s being attacked by a bear. For some reason.

This was a great level. 10/10, would play again.

Level 2: Steve

When you select Steve, you accompany him to a bar to watch the Raptors’ game. It’s well-known among fans that while Steve’s a fan of all Toronto sports, the Raptors are among his very favorites. 

You can choose to hide or shotgun beers before the bar. Inside the bar, you can accidentally stumble upon the local news (and hear some strange things about alien abductions and bear attacks), drink a lot of beer, and maybe get shanked in a dirty bar bathroom!

I had a great time with Steve and only accidentally killed him once! 10/10, would play again.

Level 3: Zack

So Zack, being apparently the only responsible one concerned about Pup’s equipment, decides to load the van. Tragically, this led to us being kidnapped by aliens. Yep. Giant crocodile people.

During Zack’s level, you’ve got to fight your way out of an alien abduction under the Denver International Airport. (I’m never flying through there after this!) You’ll come across some Scooby-Doo level villains and maybe kill your double. You never know with those pesky aliens.

This level was a riot. 10/10, would play again.

Level 4: Stefan

Full disclosure here, y’all: Stefan is my favorite member of Pup. He got me back into camping a few years back and I can’t thank him enough for it. So when he appeared in the starter video, suggesting a camping trip (to the reservoir – a reference to one of their first singles), I was down. 

Stefan’s level is not only incredibly difficult, it’s also incredibly fun if you’re a fan of the band. The level is peppered with Pup lore. You can take mushrooms while camping with Stefan – a reference to the story behind the song “Yukon” – and later, you’ll run into all kinds of Pup Deep Cuts while fleeing a bear attack. 

Through “Old Wounds” you and Stefan come across Norman (the chameleon whose tragic death inspired “Sleep in the Heat”), Stefan’s legendary first car Mabu, and even find yourself in Pine Point. 

I had to game the system to figure out how to keep Stefan (the backspace button is your friend, y’all!) alive, but it was worth it. 10/10, would play again.

The Verdict
Play It! For real, if you’re not listening to Pup what are you doing with your life?

Reed Puc
Reed Puc is an archival assistant, labor historian, and community organizer. They enjoy long walks up mountains and academically destroying the things they love. They live in Southern New England and love getting emails about new science fiction and fantasy books for young adults featuring LGBTQ leads. Please ask them about their Star Wars tattoo, it makes them feel very important.

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