Category Archives: Silly Video Game Inspired Fiction

To The Sources Themselves!

The story begins as I steeled myself to enter a cold, concrete archive.  The building itself was a grotesque accident of twisting and turning stuff, but that did not matter. I was there to retrieve the past, to recover sources thought lost and to write you a story. Before I opened the door to the past and entered the building, though, I put a bookmark in my diary and closed it. Then I took a deep breath and walked through the door.

“Greetings!”

An archivist sneaked up beside me, and her smile seemed to melt the icy concrete exterior and interior of the building. I smiled back, but the warm exchange didn’t last long. After I exhaled and rolled up my sleeves, a huge “claw” hovered into view, dangled above my head and then prepared to swoop in for the kill.

I thought I was about to be gored by the “claw” and suddenly recalled my pet fish, Mr. Fishy, from two years ago. I covered my eyes to avoid seeing the gory spectacle unfold. Then, just as quickly as I had spotted it, the “claw” swooped away in a different direction, slicing off the tiny tips of the hairs on my head along the way.  I wiped the sweat from my brow and stopped shaking.

“Whew! That was close! What is that thing anyway?”, I asked.

“It’s the Armed Book Retriever 2000,” said a different archivist who was working behind the information desk. She rolled her eyes as she replied to my question.

I watched as the “claw” backed up and beeped, like a forklift moving in reverse, then moved forward, lurched to the right, then beeped and move backwards again. It — at last — grabbed a book from the shelf only to drop it. The process of picking up the book began again.

“Couldn’t I just walk up to that stack and collect the book myself, and isn’t that machine’s claw grossly oversized to pick up tiny objects?”

“Sir,” the same archivist said, ” the Retriever 2000 is $6.50 an hour. Please stop asking so many questions and let the machine do its job in peace. It wants a safe and respectful workplace too, you know.”

At that moment, the “claw” turned around to face me for a moment and, as if it were raising an eyebrow, it lifted one of its two metal blades.

“N-n-never mind,” I said.

I backed away from the machine, and it carried on in its merry way. I decided I should do the same and carry on with my research.

I opened my diary to the bookmarked page, and landed on a quote I had highlighted, which read: “History is done in the footnotes.” The footnote to this insightful quote, yes there was one,  included a list of sources I had come to collect. I showed my diary to the archivist at the information desk and said, “Excuse me, ma’am, do you know where I can find these items.”

She glanced at my diary before saying, “Video games, huh? No one has seen or played those in a long time. They’re somewhere deep inside this place. Head down the stairs there all the way to the bottom. Keep going ’til you reach the rare technology section.”

“Ok, thanks,” I said. I muttered “I guess” under my breath.

I found myself walking down a rickety wooden staircase that wobbled every time I took a step. The steps also creaked like a squeaky, old door that someone was pushing open with all their might.

Snap!

My third step nearly killed me. My ankle almost twisted because my foot broke through part of the wood and got stuck for a minute. All of me could have fallen through the stairs, but I managed to break free and decided to skip a couple planks of wood.

“I’m okay!”

Crickets chirped. I turned around half expecting someone to come to my aid, but I guess they had stuck their noses in books. I did what little I could: I left a yellow sticky note near the hole in case someone else stumbled upon it.

When I reached the bottom of the stairs, I waddled past doors covered with cobwebs in search of the sources. The flickering torches on the brick walls did not offer enough light to illuminate my surroundings, and I bumped my head. I could already feel the resulting mountain range with my fingertips when a voice interrupted my self concern. It seemed to come from on high and provide hope in the darkness.

“How can I help you?”, asked a different archivist. I showed her my diary and she added, “Ah, yes, this way please, sir.”

I walked past several rooms as the archivist led me toward the sources. One room was full of crates, stacked to the top of ceiling, marked “Top Secret”.

“Hmmm that’s odd”, I thought to myself, as I raised an eyebrow.

Carrying on, I caught a glimpse of a crypt complete with a badly bandaged mummy sticking out of a sarcophagus. I turned away at first and kept walking. Then I shook my head and said, “Hey, wait a minute, what the hell was that? What exactly is going on here?”

I pointed at the crypt, and the archivist laughed before saying, “Oh, that’s just our Halloween decoration room. Please follow me.”

“Okay, if you say so,” I said.

We moved forward, smiling, without a care in the wide world. Suddenly a school of bats swarmed and flew over our heads.

“Alright,” I said,  “now this is getting weird. I mean…”

“Never mind, sir,” said the archivist, “we’re here.”

We entered a cavernous room with a large brown treasure chest in the center of it. I opened it and the glittering objects inside forced me to cover my eyes. I was so shocked at the discovery that I fell backwards and only caught myself by landing on my palms. When I stumbled back to my feet, I rubbed the dust off my palms and noticed a bunch of video games had tumbled out of the chest. I saw Super Mario Bros., The Legend of Zelda and Metroid.

The archivist said, “No one has played these games for years. I’m not sure the technology even exists to run them. Sir, I don’t envy the difficult work you have ahead of you, playing all these games. There’s so many.”

“I don’t care; I’ll find a way to make it work. It may not be a pretty job, but it’s my task to make the past alive. By golly, if I have to, I’ll stay up all week to play these games. Nothing can stop me.”

“What about the writing?”, she asked.

“Oh yeah,” I said, “that too.”

Advertisements

4 Comments

Filed under Silly Video Game Inspired Fiction

I Angered the Video Game Gods

I stared out the window as the sky’s tears fell to the ground. These droplets also ran down the pane of glass, and for a second, I thought I was crying, as if I lacked an awareness of my own feelings. I a took a closer look at myself and realized I was crying on the inside; the droplets were tears of boredom (the ugly cousin of tears of joy). My depressing thoughts pushed me to inhale a toxic cloud of cigarette smoke before I butted out in an ash tray and dragged myself to the couch to play video games. What happened next, minus the cigarette part because I do not smoke, is a true story. I swear.

***

I booted up a cart racer and proceeded to zip past fools, leaving them dizzy, dazed and confused. Some sore loser, though, decided to ruin my fun. The sore loser was in last place and could not handle breathing in my exhaust fumes. He decided to thwart my plans for victory. He somehow managed to creep up on me and get very close, and I saw his username was SonofCronus99. “Huh,” I thought, “That’s a weird name. I wonder who that could be.” Before I could think any further, SonofCronus99 zapped my cart with a massive lightning bolt that blinded as it emerged from behind a cloud in the heavens. My cart flipped over and landed with so much force that it flattened on the ground, like a pancake. Frustrated at this race-ending disaster, I ejected the disc and slammed it back in the case because, although I was irate, I still like to keep my games in their proper boxes.

I then turned on a different console and started playing a Smash Bros. game. Things were going well enough: my opponents were not destroying me, but I wasn’t winning every match either. I was about to win a match when a Pikachu, this one named “The Big Z”, electrocuted me with a thunderbolt attack. I went flying off the stage and landed somewhere in oblivion. This sudden defeat caused steam to shoot out my ears, so I dashed outside and into the rain to alleviate my pain. In fact, the water cooled off my hot head.

I was now feeling better until there came a roar from above and a golden lightning bolt hit me faster than I could blink.  Zap! The ground beneath me shook so hard that it seemed like an earthquake was happening, and there was a massive crater beneath my feet.  Although I smelled like burnt toast and looked like it too, I was able to rest on my knees and shake my fist at the sky.

“Hey, that’s not fair! I wasn’t even playing video games that last time.”

Zeus did not care.

4 Comments

Filed under Silly Video Game Inspired Fiction

You Learn by Playing

The stairs told a story about the family living there with each creaky step that Sandra took. The staircase could fill volumes with details about its occupying family’s life. It saw laughter strong enough to hurt one’s sides, as well as tears of sorrow and joy. Each step Sandra took was deliberate and firm enough to startle a nearby centipede, which scurried into a corner before disappearing. Her steps were firm enough that any person, not just insects, should have been aware of her approach, yet Ryan hadn’t noticed.

Sandra reached the top of the stairs when, from across the hallway, a hot, white light almost seared her eyes. The light came from behind a crack in a nearby door. Though squinting, Sandra relied on the light to guide her on the path to the door. Meanwhile, flickering images from somewhere behind the door cast ten-foot-tall shadows with giant jaws and towering teeth. Out of the corner of her eyes, she saw these monstrous images and got giant goosebumps, but she pressed forward, focusing on the door. She took a deep breath, pulled the door knob, covered her eyes for a moment and entered the room.

She smelled funky gym socks, heard strange sounds that sounded like explosions, saw a dusty calculator and several dog-eared paperbacks of Plato’s dialogues. Then she looked deep into the source of the white light: it was a T.V.., and Ryan was playing video games.

“Ok dinner’s ready in ten,” she said. “Hey, wait a minute. Aren’t you supposed to be studying?”

Ryan said, “Uh, well, I was talking to this really old guy named Socrates, and I realized all I know is how little I know. So I decided, as a starting point, to learn more about my video games.”

Sandra tilted her head, raised her eyebrow and rubbed her chin in response to Ryan’s comment.

“Well,” she said, “that’s fine as long as it came from Socrates. You can keep playing before dinner and some more afterwards.”

Then she walked out the door with a smirk on her face. When she had closed the door behind her, Ryan snickered to himself.

“Pfft! She thinks I actually talked to a dead ancient Greek dude.”

Meanwhile, as Sandra closed the door behind her, she laughed to herself.

“Haha he actually thinks I bought his story about speaking to Socrates. But I’m glad he’s reading.”

Leave a comment

Filed under Silly Video Game Inspired Fiction

The Video Game That Doesn’t Know Itself

The little video game sat alone on the mahogany shelf. The weight of its own existence felt like a boulder slung across it’s top corners. The weight was multiplied because it never thought to leave its place on the shelf and wonder forwards — until now.

It stumbled during its first few steps as it wandered around the store, staring wide-eyed at the other games. It saw row after row of different genres, such as action, adventure, RPGs and more. It stared at others hoping they could help it better understand itself, for it couldn’t yet read the writing on its own cover that told it who it was. It could only make out a few fragments when it glanced inward.

The other games saw the little game wandering around and approached it. They could sense that it was ruminating on existence as they started to speak.

“Look, friend, you already know who you are. But allow us to make things clear.”

They spun the little video game around and placed it in front of a mirror.

“I see it all now. I know who I am,” it said.

“Where do you see yourself going from here?”, the other games asked.

“Why, I see myself staying here with all of you. This is where I belong.”

Leave a comment

Filed under Silly Video Game Inspired Fiction

The Case of the Haunted Controller

The floor creaked as the five gamers stepped on it. Outside, thunder cracked from on high and split tree trunks in half. Rats scurried into cobwebbed corners and chased after nonexistent food.

The five gamers wore poker faces, moving forward without scanning the surroundings. They reached a large, iron clad door that dwarfed them all, even if all five were stacked on top of each other. Sweat pouring down their face and palms, they slowly twisted the dust covered doorknob and opened the door. Most people would then see the massive couch staring them in the face as they entered the room, but the gamers were staring straight ahead at the TV screen.

They saw a controller on the couch, not spiders. They swooshed away the arachnids, booted up the console and sat down to play. They tapped the left joystick and the character moved right. They tapped the right joystick and the character moved left. They tapped up on the d-pad and the character moved down. They hit pause to calibrate the control settings when the controller developed a mind of its own. The joystick zipped by ten different submenus without end; it went all the way to the far right. If they tried to move left? The controller would simply plant it’s joysticks in the sand.

The gamers tried to unpause by hitting start, but the settings menu would only flash and re-appear before their incredulous eyes.

“Noooooo! It’s haunted!”

They ran past the spiders, through the door, over the creaky floor before rolling out of the nearest exit.

Leave a comment

Filed under Silly Video Game Inspired Fiction, Video Game Technology

A Scene from The Living Room

“Did you mop the floor yet?”

“Yes, Mom.”

Sandra glanced up from her paper, spectacles perched low on her nose, about to pass judgment like a learned jurist.

“Yes, that’ll do,” she said.

She stuck out her lips unnaturally after she said this, and fine lines appeared around her eyes. She was suppressing a large grin because she didn’t want to tell Billy the truth: the floor was clean enough to see her reflection on it. And she was none too pleased about the wrinkles she saw.

“Alright,” she said while wearing a poker face, “you can go play video games.”

Billy’s eyes lit up and, unlike his mom, a smile overtook his face. His smile was as impressive as a bright display of fireworks.

“Wait!” She raised her eyebrows and her round eyes grew as large as an owl’s. She had to ensure he deserved this game time.

“Did you also clean the living room?”

Billy, undaunted by this inquisition, wore his smile as he pushed open — and held — the swinging door to reveal the living room.

Sandra saw a veritable sultan’s tent: neatly arranged and colorful pillows, the smell of foreign and pleasant spices, and a large bowl full of grapes on the coffee table. The dam she had constructed around her mouth collapsed. Her smile burst forth and flooded the room with warmth.

“Ok Billy,” she said, “you can go play.”

Billy let go of the door and, in a flash, was already playing his game.

What happened next happened in an instant, but time seemed to slow down for Sandra. The swinging door swung back and forth four times before it closed. Each swing gave Sandra a different glimpse into the room’s fluid state.

The door swung back and forth the first time. She saw the living room pillows tossed around carelessly in some kind of a messy salad. The door swung back and forth a second time. She saw socks twirling around on the ceiling fan at hyper speed. The door swung back and forth a third time. She saw greasy pizza boxes littered the coffee table. The door swung back and forth a fourth time. The grapes were scattered on the floor and had turned into wine from constant stomping. The door finally closed.

Steam came out of Sandra’s ears, she clenched her fist and shook it in the air.

“Ugh! Video Games!”

Leave a comment

Filed under Silly Video Game Inspired Fiction

The Video Game That Was Too Big to Fail

Once upon a time, there was a tall man with long, frazzled grey hair. His white gown covered his wiry frame and his plastic goggles protected his bulging eyes. Liquids bubbled from beakers around him and electrical currents zipped and zapped through metal coils so much so that passersby would have seen a blinding light through the window. This was a mad scientist hard at work.

A small, hunched-over figure, his disfigured face covered by cowl, appeared in the doorway behind the mad scientist. The figure spoke: “Master, pray forgive me for this most rude of intrusions.”

“Ugh— what do you want Igor?”, said the mad scientist, “what was so important that you had to interrupt me while I work on my video game system?” The scientist said this while he poured neon liquids that smelled like rotten eggs into test tubes.

“It’s the villagers, master. They are amassing at the castle gates and chanting ‘off with his head!’ They demand to know what happened to all the money they gave you.”

“Yes, well, my head shall stay firmly tethered to my head. There will be no beheading today. You may ignore them.”

“Yes, master.” Igor turned his crooked back and waddled out of the room.

“Wait. I didn’t say you could go. Allow me to show you my latest creation,” the mad scientist said. He sat down in a regular office chair, and it squeaked as he swiveled around and slowly slid across the room. Then the chair stopped, half way before reaching its goal, without warning.

“What did you wish to show me, master?”

“Oh, do shut up. Wait while I get this confounded chair going again.”

The mad scientist’s chair needed some grease. But he decided instead to push his long leg against the floor, as if he was rowing, until he reached his destination. He extended his arm, his eyes sparkled in the light and he pointed toward one corner of the room.

“It’s my latest creation and my pièce de résistance.”

The mad scientist’s chair finally reached the control panel he was aiming for. He then slapped a large, red button, and a spotlight revealed a massive object hiding in the corner. The object was so tall that its tiny head almost touched the massive ceiling in the room. The rectangular body of the object seemed to stretch on forever without end. It also sported a pair of VR goggles for eyes, giant boots, boxing gloves for hands and a power-on button in the center of its chest. And of course, since it was freezing outside, it had a tiny toque.

“This killer video game system will destroy my competition and help me to dominate the video game industry from my castle.”

“So that’s where all the villagers’ money went. Master, do you think it was wise to take so much of it and invest in a risky project like this?”

The mad scientist kept talking. “Look at this system,” he gestured at the machine, “It’s a thing of beauty. It’s too big to fail. It’s going to be a great success; it has to be a great success. Now let me just press one more button, over there, to get this thing started.”

The mad scientist swiveled his chair again and pushed it wish his foot. As he glided across the room toward the second button, he let out a maniacal laugh. The laugh was so shrill it sent marauding mice, hoping to find cheese scraps, scurrying for cover in their homes. Then the chair abruptly stopped short again.

“Oh,” he glanced down at the chair with a frown, “hold on a sec.”

He propelled the chair forward with his foot and let loose another laugh. This one was about as pleasant to hear as nails scratching a chalkboard. And the chair stopped again.

“Wait, wait— I think I got I’ve got it. Yes, Yes”

The chair came to a halt in front of a massive computer. The mad scientist, rubbed his palms together and a child-like glee overcame his face. He flipped open the plastic lid and hit a massive green button with his palm.

“Mwhahahahaha!” he cackled. His insane laugh was so loud that it echoed throughout the castle and even the villagers could hear it outside.

The video game system’s started to rotate its head. It was moving.

“It’s alive! It’s alive I tell you!” yelled the mad scientist.

The system lurched forward awkwardly as it took its first steps, its baby steps.

“Yes, that’s right,” said the mad scientist, “come closer.” A grin, like the Cheshire cat’s, appeared on his face.

But then the system made a rapid move away from the scientist and closer to a wall.

“What are you doing? Stop!”

The system lifted its mighty arms, and punched through the castle walls, which crumbled like a cookie, until the twinkly stars were visible. Then the system ran. It ran far, far away into the cold, dark night.

“Nooooo! This can’t be. My life’s work is lost to the darkness.”

The mad scientist fell to the ground and beat the pavement with his fists. His tears and sweat created a small puddle beneath him.

Igor rushed over, lay his hand on the scientist’s back and gently patted his shoulder. “There, there master.”

The mad scientist sniffled and looked at Igor through bleary, tear-stained eyes.

“Everything will be okay, master. But the system didn’t work. It’s time to give the villagers back their money.”

Leave a comment

Filed under Silly Video Game Inspired Fiction