Category: BioShock

In light that it was my birthday yesterday – whoo hoo!! – I decided that it’s about time to dedicate a post all about me.  And video games.  And well, since all you readers know about my obsession with RPGs, it’s time to tell you about another obsession.

Scary video games.

And yes, I know this is a pervy blog, but haven’t you all heard enough about my insatiable love of Alistair?

It’s strange because I really have a love-hate relationship with scary video games.  I love reading about them, about the plotlines and the strange freaky twists, but I absolutely, positively cannot play a scary game.  Believe me, I’ve tried.  It just doesn’t work.  I also don’t watch scary movies, but it’s honestly 10x worse when you’re actually playing a game.  Because a game will put you in the drivers seat and allow you to control the hunted and haunted, it’s much scarier than just watching something you can’t participate in.

Let me relay an experience I had just a few years ago.  I was probably 21 when BioShock came out, and a co-worker owned it and kept raving about it (not Wadoobie, by the way).  I’d heard about how great it was, but I hadn’t actually learned anything regarding what the game really was about.  So I asked my co-worker if I could borrow it, and he obliged.  Later that night, I sat down to play, ready for an amazing game.  The eerie Start menu had me a little on edge, but I settled into the opening sequence fairly easily.  I’m sure everyone remembers how the original BioShock starts?  You’re on a plane, looking at a book and perhaps a picture, and then – *BOOM* – explosions, and your plane goes down in the ocean.  Okay, swimming around in the water isn’t too bad…man is it just me or does this guy breathe really heavily?… and then I found the structure.  And then I walked down.  The record ‘Under the Sea’ plays with a crackling, static-y tone and continues to give the off kilter feeling that something isn’t right with this picture.

Click for BioShock's Intro

And then I, like all players of Bioshock, took mini submarine down.  As you float by, your view allows you to see the ocean creatures, and then the majestic city of Rapture as you approach.  Of course, as you get closer, you realize that maybe Rapture isn’t so Majestic after all.

Click for BioShock Intro Part 2...aaaaand amp up the creepiness

When you arrive at your dock, you can’t see much.  But what you can see…is horrifying.  The person sent to check you out is killed by someone who sounds and moves like a crazy person.  And then when that crazy person notices you, and jumps on your sub and starts scratching away, well.  It’s pretty obvious.  Anywhos, so when I got to that part, I was hyperventilating.  Yeah, I’m not so good at scary.  I paused the game and literally threw the controller away from me.  I couldn’t handle it.  I jumped up and walked away from the tv, shaking.

However, I had some friends come over later and they started playing it, and I was (sort of) okay with just watching it.  If it got too freaky I would jump up and walk away for a little bit.  And then, intrigued by the interesting storyline, I looked up information on the game online.  I read every single one of those radio log entries.  It was fascinating; but there was no way I could play it myself.

Look, it's Kat playing BioShock!

So what’s wrong with this picture?  Actually controlling the character and the game and encountering all these scary things is too much for me, but I’m okay with watching others, or watching a clip online (with the sound off), or reading about the storyline.  (Eternal Darkness is really interesting – as are all the ‘Sanity Effects’ – what a great idea by Silicon Knights)  In fact, I’m obsessed with reading about scary games.  I just won’t play them.  Ever.

I guess I’m just a Scaredy Kat.

-Kat

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