Category Archives: Silly Video Game Inspired Fiction

My Video Game Console Talked to Me

“One more level.” That’s what Jimmy told himself forty-two levels ago.

He ordered his digital character to jump over fire pits, glide over tempestuous tides and flatten deadly turtle henchman. The turtles seemed innocent on the outside, but Jimmy prided himself for noticing they were evil on the inside. “These dastardly reptiles are not going to stop me,” he said.

Several thousand dead henchmen later, Jimmy’s eyes became as heavy as a massive boulder. First one eye closed and then the other stubbornly fought to stay in the game. The boulder soon weighed down both eyes until Jimmy was snoring, drooling and dangling a controller in his right hand. No one know how long he was out.

But the video game console didn’t stop, didn’t sleep. The console magically grew arms and legs and its yellow light split into two bright eyes. This machine unplugged its cord but kept running; it ran to Jimmy and shook him wake.

“Wake up and keep playing. Come on!” it said.

Jimmy somehow shook himself awake. He rubbed his sore eyes open and stumbled into his bed with a thud. The wind whispered through the open window, and he swore he heard the console say “Come and play.”

This dazed man gazed at the console that lay motionless on his bright red bookshelf. There were no arms, no legs and the power cord was still plugged in. The yellow light on the machine blinked at him a couple of times. Was it all dream?

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Video Games Are So Relaxing

All day, Jim was surrounded by loud machines. They expelled gas and hissed as they moved heavy loads on a construction site. The machines ran over materials, crunching them and splitting some wood in half. When the much vaunted machines broke, which happened often, he had to finish moving the materials himself before 5 p.m. His head hurt, and he did not want to move at the day’s end, but at least it was home time.

After work, rather than clear his head, Jim filled it with words. He opened the window in his apartment, plopped himself down at his desk to flip through the pages of book after book. He didn’t notice the outside world as his pencil vigorously scratched the books and his margins overflowed with notes. Soon, there was an unbearable noise he could no longer ignore: the never-ending traffic on the street. There was honking, yelling, speeding, angry arguments, rumbling and screeching tires. Listening to these sounds while reading became a tiring chore. “Enough!” Jim thought.

He left his desk, grabbed something to eat and sat down to play video games. His character walked through a verdant world and stared at an unblemished blue sky. Just then, a massive steel beast rumbled in to view on the screen. It flattened grass, knocked over trees, left a giant footprint and belched smoke. It was a tank.

“Ah,” Jim thought as he stretched his toes and legs, “this is so relaxing.”

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The Video Game Strikes Back!

Steve was ready to defeat the mechanized T-Rex boss. He had a bowl of nachos, a strategy guide and a map spread out on his couch. The nachos, of course, were for nourishment. The strategy guide was to help beat the boss because Steve had failed to do so after 77 attempts. He would not stand for 78. And the map served as a visual reminder of his failures. You see, using large blood red blotches, Steve plotted out each place where his character had died while fighting the beast.

This map plotting was a painful exercise, but Steve felt it necessary. The large red blotches on the map reminded him where to avoid the beast, and the map motivated him to do better. This time, he thought, the T-Rex will be the one crying.

He wiped the nacho cheese off his face and set his sights on his goal: toppling the Dino king. Steve’s digital character took one bold step forward in the digital world. The character unsheathed his sword, steeled himself against the face of evil and readied his shield to deflect any particles.

“Ok,” Steve said, “remember to tap the A button exactly 14 times when the boss breathes fire balls.”

Huge bombs of fire then shot out of the T-Rex’s mouth and zeroed in on Steve’s character. The character dodged, ducked and dived until the bombs ceased. The bombardment had shaken Steve’s nerves, but on the surface, he was as calm as a cool lake on an early spring morning.

“Whew!” Steve exclaimed.

He had made it past the first stage. He only failed to get past this stage 25 times before.

Now he moved on to stage two — the dreaded laser zone. The T-Rex shot burning red lasers out of its eyes; they were so hot that they melted rocks and anything in sight. Sweat poured down Steve’s head as if it were Niagara Falls, and he took a big gulp. Rather than hide from these bright beams, his character jumped over the lasers like he was an expert at jump rope. The lasers nearly burned the character a couple of times, but he made it through untouched. Well, the T-Rex did singe some of the character’s hair, but Steve thought, “You can’t have everything.”

Steve wiped his brow. He made it past the second stage.

The final stage was to hit the boss’s tail. The massive spikes on the T-Rex’s back threatened to eviscerate the character, though, as he targeted the tail. You had to have perfect timing to execute this attack and avoid death. Or so Steve thought. He believed he’d messed up so often in this stage because he hadn’t been “perfect.”

Steve waited to attack. He knew the T-Rex would recharge after the exhaustive laser blast assault. He figured this was the perfect time to attack because the beast was not shooting, and it was vulnerable without a strong offense. Sure enough, the beast rubbed its tired eyes, and the character pounced on the tail, tearing it to shreds. The mighty king fell and left a cloud of dust that rivaled a demolition project.

“I did it!”

Steve jumped for joy and smiled so hard that his jaw hurt. It had taken him 78 tries, and he had finally done it. He had beaten the boss and the game at last.

“I guess I won’t need you any more,” he thought to himself.

He ran to open the window. Then he picked up the game disc, winded up his arm and flicked the game out like it was a frisbee.

“Good riddance!” he said.

He turned around and marched triumphantly toward the kitchen to grab a celebratory beer. But he was celebrating a little too early because the disc came spinning back. The disc returned with a vengeance through the window, like a boomerang, and walloped Steve in the back of the head.

“Owwww! Will this wretched game never leave me in peace?”

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The Video Game That No One Played

Once upon a time, a single video game sat alone on a store shelf. This lonely game wasn’t shiny like the others. It didn’t have any fancy graphics or eye-popping pictures on the box. It had no action, no blood, no violence and no aggression. The game did have layers of grey cobwebs and dust covering it.

Sometimes one could see droplets of liquid trickling down the game box, but this wasn’t someone’s attempt to clean it. The drops would trickle only in the middle of the night. Those nights in the store when feet fell silent, chatter ceased, security guards finished their last rounds and the clerk killed the lights.

Until one day when a little girl changed the story. She saw the lonely video game and heard it call to her, cleaned it off and bought it. The clerk and customers all laughed, but the little girl wasn’t going to ignore the game’s pain or let the laughter change her mind.

“Thank you for saving me from a life of endless consuming and being thrown away. I can’t wait to be free,” said the game. Then the box vanished into thin air. The little girl smiled even though she had lost the video game that called her.

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Sharing Video Games

Michael awoke on Christmas morning as if he had just downed a pot of coffee. But he had never touched a drop of the black stuff in his life. Instead, he was brimming with excitement on his ninth Christmas.

He was so excited that he nearly forgot how to walk. His legs couldn’t keep up with his enthusiasm, and he nearly rolled down the stairs like a ball. But he did make it to the Christmas tree where the rest of his joyous family waited. Michael exceeded this level of joy when his parents gave him a present.  It was a new video game console!

After he thanked his parents, Michael surveyed the scene of mirth and joy unfolding in his house. He smiled so hard that his face hurt. Except his smiled turned upside down as he looked out the window.

There, he saw a boy around his own age, but this boy was different. He walked with his head down, and his clothes were in tatters. Every now and then, this boy looked behind himself and pulled up his scarf cover his face. Maybe this boy didn’t have a family. Maybe he didn’t have Christmas. Maybe he had no home. Maybe he was ashamed of himself.

It didn’t matter to Michael. He rushed outside wearing his indoor Christmas face and showed it to the world.

“Would you like to play my new video game system?” asked Michael.

The boy snarled for a second. Then his lips curled into a more recognizable shape, and he smiled.

“Sure,” the boy, still incredulous, said.

The two new friends walked away, laughed and talked to each other.

Then the boy said, “I wish there was more people like you in the world.”

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A Tale of Two Misdelivered Video Games

Jenny woke up just like any other day: she rubbed her eyes and grabbed her schoolbooks. As she stumbled around her pink room, she remembered it was both the weekend and her birthday! The fog in her head cleared, and she rushed through her bedroom door into the hallway. And there, sitting on the floor, was a gift from her parents.

She knew what inside the gift bag. After all, she had announced her dream gift to all her friends and relatives. She had even taped a photo of her dream gift on the fridge. Everyone knew she wanted “Pink Pony Rancher 14” (“Now with Cuddly Bunnies.”)

How often she had rehearsed this moment in her dreams, and now she was living it. She opened the gift bag and found a box, a final obstacle. As she opened the box, her parents hovered into view hoping to catch a glimpse of her smile. She ripped open the last piece of bubble wrap and inside was “Super Awesome and Violent Super Hero Adventure Romp 2”.

“We ordered it online,” her father said, “That’s the one you wanted, right sweetheart? We don’t know much about video games.”

Jenny smiled and thanked her parents. She valued loving others more than any toy or game. She tried to appreciate the value of a gift she didn’t ask for, and the love she had received.

After the house fell silent, Jenny sneaked downstairs to play the game. After turning around to check that her parents weren’t watching, she fell in love with the game and played for hours.

***

Jimmy woke up, rolled out of bed and landed on his head. He ignored the pain because he had no time for anything as “weak” as pain. His eyes stung like someone had sprayed them with lemon juice, but he ignored this feeling too. He had more important things to do.

He was about to drive his motorcycle to the gym where he trained as a wrestler, but then he remembered the special day. It was his birthday! So he threw on his favourite heavy metal band t-shirt, combed his long black hair and lifted weights for an hour.

Then he rushed out of his bedroom door to find the bag his girlfriend had stuffed with his gift. The bag was black, of course, and featured a skull and crossbones on the front. But Jimmy paid little attention to these details, including the address on the box, as he thought about the video game he was expecting. He knew what video game would be inside the box because he’d begged his girlfriend to get the latest superhero adventure.

He ripped open the shipping box, and the neon pink game case almost blinded him . It was “Pink Pony Rancher 14”. Claire, Jimmy’s girlfriend, craned her neck around the corner to see his reaction. “That’s the video game you wanted, right? I ordered it from this new video game warehouse website.”

Jimmy felt stung and stood still for a couple of seconds. Yet, he nodded and smiled at Claire because he knew their relationship and the love they shared were more important than any video game. “Thank you sweetheart,” he said. Then they went out for dinner to celebrate Jimmy’s birthday.

When they returned home and Claire had fallen asleep, Jimmy tip toed downstairs to the living room. He turned on his console, and with a deep sigh, gave the game a shot. After a couple of minutes, he turned around to make sure Claire wasn’t watching. A big smile overtook his stubborn lips as he combed the hair of his pony, Mr. Cuddles.

 

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This Video Game Belongs in a Library!

Me: “Hi, I’m picking up a game that I put on hold yesterday.”

Downstairs staff member: “Oh, you know, you don’t get to take the game the day after you put it on hold.”

Me: “Really?”

Downstairs staff member: “Once the game is taken off the shelf, it has to be processed and travel from one library to another, which can take several days. And no one can check out the game while it is processed.”

Me: “But the game I placed a hold on is already in the library.”

Downstairs staff member: “Hmmm you can check upstairs, sir, we might not have taken the game off the shelf yet.”

[I walk upstairs to the next level and talk to a second staff member].

Me: “Hi, I’m trying to find a game I just put on hold yesterday. The staff member downstairs told me to check up here.”

Upstairs staff member: “You just came from downstairs and they told you that?”

Me: “Yes.”

Upstairs staff member: “Did they run a search from the computer?”

Me: “No.”

Upstairs staff member: “Did they have you fill out the XJ5000 form?”

Me: “No.”

Upstairs staff member: “Did they check the holds shelf?”

Me: “No.”

Upstairs staff member: “Ok, hold on; let me call downstairs.”

[I waited a minute for the phone call to end.]

Upstairs staff member: “Let’s check the stacks. Come with me. Hmmm no, no it’s not there.”

[I waited about two minutes]

Upstairs staff member: “Let’s see if we can find it on my computer.”

Me: “I thought it would be easy to get the game in the library because the library website says it’s in this building.”

Upstairs staff member: “Oh, wait, it turns out the game was taken out a year go and never returned. I’ll have to change its status to trace.”

Me: “Alright, I guess I’ll have to go to another library branch.”

I thought I’d have to slay a dragon or fight a final boss to get the game. But, no, the story ends with an anti-climactic ending.


This isn’t a true story. However, my recent trip to pick up a DVD from my local library inspired this story. Also, I don’t think that my library has video games.

 

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