Friday, November 13, 2015

Personal List: 6 Curious Cases of Game Developers/People in Games (THE RECKONING)

So a long time ago I posted an article on game developers in video games, and a few moments later found a list of more appearences that I didn't post. So... here are those entries... I guess... I love using ellipses... They make writing look... prof...ession...al...
Also, I haven't made a list since, uh, this one from nine months ago, so it might take a while to readjust. The thing is that lists either do really well or do nothing at all. I mean, my second most-viewed post (for now....?) was a list, but it's all so niche and dependent on hopping on the proper bandwagon at the right time. It's just a mess, but what the heck! I found all the information I needed, so now I just have to make it like a metaphorical meatloaf.

King's Quest IV (1988) - <get beamed
King's Quest is famous in that it's a fine example of an early video game that isn't afraid to take itself too seriously. Also the box art is amazing. Because what better way to prepare you for an adventure than Reese Wtherspoon on a unicron being chased by vampires(?)?! Nevertheless, I digress.
After defeating some witch called Lolotte (I never played the game. Y'know, if you couldn't tell.), take a trip over to the prison cell and type the command "beam me". What follows is a half-second of epilepsy before you get phased into a secret room full of the developers, with introductions to each of the people who programmed the game, "and then some." My personal favorite is Jim Heintz, who "just wanted to be in this room." (Look, Jim, we can't always get everything we want.) After the brief introductions, we can engage in a surreal conversation about bowling alleys and ogres walking up walls. Just typical banter, really.
Also there are computers and hamburgers flying outside the windows. It's not relevant, but it would be a crime not to write that sentence without context.


MDK2 (2000) - It's All in the Skies

I won't even talk about this one too much. We've all heard about it. At the end of Stage 7, in the boss arena, if you have a keen eye, you'll notice something blocking the stars in the sky. Most people wouldn't even notice, but if you did, chances are you would've forgotten about it or at the very least suppressed your OCD.
However, if you find the right edge of the stadium, you'll walk on thin air. Carefully follow an invisible path and you'll eventually near a gigantic stone tower. Head around the backside and you'll find a truly strange sight to behold: the game developers are plastered in front of a fire background, with one's head superimposed onto Satan from South Park. What can I say, it was the early 2000s; it was essentially still the '90s.
Similarly, in Level 4C, if you look into the night sky, you may notice some dots. Zoom in on them and you'll find the faces of the game developers just... just kinda floating around. Watching you. Noticing you. 1984-ing you.
Eastern Mind: The Lost Souls of Tong-Nou (1994) - Have Head
Oh, Eastern Mind, I've talked about you on many occasions, but you're so beautiful. What a strange creature you are. To be honest, it's pretty much what you'd expect from a man like Osamu Sato, who created the games as an "artistic experience" in essence. After getting acclaim for his bizarre music and an exhibit entitled Aphabetical Orgasm, Sony was game and decided to let him take the reins for his next project which is... this one.
It's plot revolves around Rin, who has lost his soul and must travel to the island of Tong-Nou to reclaim the fragments that made it. Realistically, though, "island" is kind of a misnomer. It's more of a floating planet. Which is also Sato's head. Realistically, though, what could we expect from the creator of LSD: Dream Emulator? Regardless of if you think the game an artistic triumph or a novelty, you can't deny that there is definitely Sato's floating head. And that's a cameo.
Earthbound (1995) - Ruffini the Talking Dog
Never question Earthbound. The game essentially introduced the West to what strange humor Japan had to offer. At the time, few other games from the East even made it to the West of such a strange caliber, but when it hit, like ten years after it was released, it struck, and it struck gold.
Just one of the many fascinating touches was Ruffini the dog, a character you meet early in the game whose purpose it explain how to buy weapons. The twist is that this is no ordinary dog; he is haunted by the spirit of the game designer, Shigesato Itoi. Because what better person, or more correctly thing, to tell a young child how to buy from the local weapon convenience store than a dog possessed by the spirit of a video game developer? I just have this image in my head of a poodle behind a gas station selling artillery and it's hilarious because my sense of humor is not, in any way, normal.
Microsoft Excel '95 (1995, duh) - The Hall of Tortured Developers
... More appropriately, it's called "The Hall of Tortured Souls." It's basically a Doom clone except completely barren with strange rooms full of murals of the staff that made Excel. In theory, it's not creepy, but the fact that it was on Excel of all places causes people to have such a strange disposition towards it.
I mean, you can tell that it's a little out-of-hand once Cracked has a field day with it (That Luigi's Mansion one was a glitch and you effing know it), the site that sought out to prove Bill Gates was Satan in 1995 uses it as proof for its argument, and they made Creepypasta of it. Yes, the Internet's favorite art form had an entry based off of a hidden Doom clone in the most useless Microsoft program.
The Immortal (1990) - Hot Coffee... No, not that one.
Lovingly called infamous even though clearly nobody's heard of it, the coffee easter egg is just one of several baffling design choices in the NES game The Immortal. Quite frankly, it needs no introduction. We've seen the videos. We've seen the torture. We've seen death.
But we haven't seen the coffee.
In Stage 4, hop on a magic carpet. Fly through a series of sadistic design choices involving fireballs, and eventually you'll reach a long corridor. Hug the low wall until you find a hidden room with an item called "Coffee."
The thing is, The Immortal is a big mess. Even if somebody found it, they wouldn't know what to think of it considering that every item in The Immortal seems to either be a trap or a red herring. However, this item is secretly kind of useful. Go to the next level into a room full of red worms. From there, hop down a hole in the floor (which, by the way, will legitimately kill you in any other scenario in the game) and find the game developers. From there, give them the coffee pot and they'll give you a spell to automatically kill two trolls that appear in Level 6.
Worth it? Probably not. Interesting? Well, it's probably the second-best hidden secret in a video game involving coffee sooooo....

For the last article where I CREATED MY FIRST VIDEO, click here.
For the last list, click here.
For the last interview, click here.

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