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'The horrible life of an NPC.'

Sun 06/08/17 at 22:39:
Regular
"Braaains"
Posts: 437
Ever wondered what life is like for NPCs? Does it matter? Aren't they just cannon fodder? But what if they were to ever become aware of their predicaments. Come with me as I open a horrifying window into the lives of the NPCs doomed to suffer eternally in four video games.

Call of Duty

You have no recollection of going to sleep. Were you sleeping standing up? And why is there a rifle in your hands? You try to put it down, to cast it to the grimy floor, but there’s something wrong and it refuses to leave your grasp, as if were somehow part of you.

You’re still trying to understand this and your thoughts are as panicked as your breath when the first bullet hits you, ripping through your leg and shattering your kneecap. You drop to the floor in agony, pain clouding your vision as you look up at the figure standing over you. You try to beg for mercy but the words that come out of this stranger’s mouth are so alien you have no way of telling him that you’re not a threat. There's a flash of brilliant white as the second bullet ploughs through your skull, and there is only blackness.

You wake up to the acrid stench of smoke and the echoing sound of screams.

Katamari Damacy
Yours is a dead world walking; you’ve known this for nearly two years. Everyone has, ever since the cities started disappearing. Except disappearing isn’t the right word, but the word gives you comfort since it
You wake up to the acrid stench of smoke and the echoing sound of screams, punctuated by bursts of what you can only assume is gunfire. You means you don’t have to think about what really happens when.. it comes for you. Half the globe is gone now; people have tried travelling to escape it, but then the last of the major airports went and well, that was it. There’s been talk of bunkers but really, what’s the point? To clamber back out, to a landscape picked clean?

You refill your glass, as your ears pick up that familiar but faint refrain. You haven’t heard from your wife and daughter in a month, not since they went to “Spring Break”. A dry chuckle rises in your throat as you laugh at the absurdity of persisting with such a ceremony but Shannon was so insistent, wanting to make the most of the time she had left; of the time you all had left. The music is closer now and, taking glass and bottle in hand, you head up to the roof of your apartment. Setting them down momentarily, you take a seat in front of the telescope, focusing its gaze on the horizon. And there it is. The same, familiar green form that, all those months ago, was a source of amusement as it shoved leaves, cans and whatever else around the streets of Chicago.

“The Litter Elf,” they called him, as the videos predictably went viral. People only started to raise an eyebrow when he started gathering up rats. By the time people started going missing, it was much too late. You shove the ear plugs as the music (the biggest surprise is that no-one ever figured where that was coming from) and rumbling reaches its peak. Your last coherent thought as the vast, tumbling mass rolls over you and your voice joins the cacophony of screams is that maybe, just maybe, your family made it to safety.

Civilization

You’d always had an unshakeable sense of faith and so it seemed only natural that you would enter the priesthood. It wasn’t that you wanted to convince people of God’s existence; His presence was evident, from the buildings that sprung up in mere moments through to the miraculous discoveries He would bestow upon his people. But there were those who doubted his benevolence, who questioned his wisdom. And their voices grew louder, demanding action when more settlements fell to Emperor Ghandi and his army. Still, your faith held.

But as they days went on, doubt started to gnaw away at your soul. You led the dwindling faithful in prayer, begging for intervention when the Lord’s word came. The Grand Holy Army, pikes sharpened, armour gleaming like the sun, marched out of the city to crush the enemy. Two days later, a mere ten soldiers hobbled back to the city, bloody and broken. They lived long enough to speak of a horror like no other, a legion of metallic monsters that belched fire and which struck the ground with thunder. Many fled but those who still had faith in their righteousness pushed forward and drove their pikes in, shattering against the hide of those metal beasts.

The monsters are outside now. These “tanks”, according to the message sent by Emperor Ghandi, will remain there until the city surrenders, or starves. Yet some part of you still believed that your God would save you; till the day when God finally showed his true nature. They stood in the town square, men and women begging for intervention, crying out for salvation. And when no answer came, they started cursing His name. That was when he made His presence felt, for the first time in weeks.

There was no glowing light, no booming, remonstrating voice; just screams as, one by one, the protestors were lifted into the air as if by some invisible hand. Some were flung over the city walls, others struck buildings with a hideous thud, their broken bodies tumbling to the floor. That was three days ago and now you walk through the streets, packed with the dead and the dying, the sickening stench of decay. And, standing in that same city square, you can keep silent no more. You raise your first and curse your God, the same sadistic God who sent his faithful to fight an enemy they couldn’t hope to defeat.

You’re still cursing His name when you feel the tug on your shoulders.

Grand Theft Auto

You’ve been walking for as long as you can remember; in fact, it’s all you can remember. Every once in a while you’ll try to think back to when you started out but your past is as much a mystery to you as your name. Occasionally, as you walk the streets of the city, someone will call out an unfamiliar name to you, addressing you as if you were a close friend. But of the many varied names you’ve been called, none ever resonate and you walk on, a stranger to even yourself.

Night falls and still you walk. The streets have become your unwelcome companions; you’ve grown to know each corner, every stop sign and crossing. You’ve tried willing yourself to stop but nothing seems to work, as if you’re driven onwards by some unknown force. Could it be that you’ve done something terrible and are being punished for it? Is this Hell? Logic, if it even exists in this place, surely dictates that you’d be getting tired by now; or that you’d have walked your feet raw until you were shuffling along on bloody bone.

There is one brief glimmer of hope, that Death may one day take you. You know that he roams the roads of the city. Unlike the other drivers, he pays no heed to the rules of the road, racing swiftly through traffic to claim those who, presumably, have completed their penance. You saw him once, his car mounting the pavement as he obliterated a man who had been standing there moments before. You tried to shout, hoping that he’d see you and deliver you sweet, blessed release but no sound came out. Death merely reversed out and drove off, tyres screeching, oblivious to your inner pleas. As for the dead man, his journey was over.

But you? You walk on.

And if that wasn't unpleasant enough, there are a range of general miseries associated with being an NPC. You've got to deal with player characters who are bullet sponges and can take 20 bullets compared to the 2 it takes to kill you. Fail to lock your door and all your possessions are considered fair game by the "hero" who will gladly rob you while you watch. 20 gold coins you've been saving to buy your daughter a birthday present? Tough. It's his now. Don't get attached to that car, either; or your wallet, which will be stolen after the thief backs over you in your own vehicle.

So next time you're playing a video game, give a thought to the digital denizens to whom you may be, at best, an irritation and, at worst, the stuff of their nightmares.
There have been no replies to this thread yet.
Sun 06/08/17 at 22:39:
Regular
"Braaains"
Posts: 437
Ever wondered what life is like for NPCs? Does it matter? Aren't they just cannon fodder? But what if they were to ever become aware of their predicaments. Come with me as I open a horrifying window into the lives of the NPCs doomed to suffer eternally in four video games.

Call of Duty

You have no recollection of going to sleep. Were you sleeping standing up? And why is there a rifle in your hands? You try to put it down, to cast it to the grimy floor, but there’s something wrong and it refuses to leave your grasp, as if were somehow part of you.

You’re still trying to understand this and your thoughts are as panicked as your breath when the first bullet hits you, ripping through your leg and shattering your kneecap. You drop to the floor in agony, pain clouding your vision as you look up at the figure standing over you. You try to beg for mercy but the words that come out of this stranger’s mouth are so alien you have no way of telling him that you’re not a threat. There's a flash of brilliant white as the second bullet ploughs through your skull, and there is only blackness.

You wake up to the acrid stench of smoke and the echoing sound of screams.

Katamari Damacy
Yours is a dead world walking; you’ve known this for nearly two years. Everyone has, ever since the cities started disappearing. Except disappearing isn’t the right word, but the word gives you comfort since it
You wake up to the acrid stench of smoke and the echoing sound of screams, punctuated by bursts of what you can only assume is gunfire. You means you don’t have to think about what really happens when.. it comes for you. Half the globe is gone now; people have tried travelling to escape it, but then the last of the major airports went and well, that was it. There’s been talk of bunkers but really, what’s the point? To clamber back out, to a landscape picked clean?

You refill your glass, as your ears pick up that familiar but faint refrain. You haven’t heard from your wife and daughter in a month, not since they went to “Spring Break”. A dry chuckle rises in your throat as you laugh at the absurdity of persisting with such a ceremony but Shannon was so insistent, wanting to make the most of the time she had left; of the time you all had left. The music is closer now and, taking glass and bottle in hand, you head up to the roof of your apartment. Setting them down momentarily, you take a seat in front of the telescope, focusing its gaze on the horizon. And there it is. The same, familiar green form that, all those months ago, was a source of amusement as it shoved leaves, cans and whatever else around the streets of Chicago.

“The Litter Elf,” they called him, as the videos predictably went viral. People only started to raise an eyebrow when he started gathering up rats. By the time people started going missing, it was much too late. You shove the ear plugs as the music (the biggest surprise is that no-one ever figured where that was coming from) and rumbling reaches its peak. Your last coherent thought as the vast, tumbling mass rolls over you and your voice joins the cacophony of screams is that maybe, just maybe, your family made it to safety.

Civilization

You’d always had an unshakeable sense of faith and so it seemed only natural that you would enter the priesthood. It wasn’t that you wanted to convince people of God’s existence; His presence was evident, from the buildings that sprung up in mere moments through to the miraculous discoveries He would bestow upon his people. But there were those who doubted his benevolence, who questioned his wisdom. And their voices grew louder, demanding action when more settlements fell to Emperor Ghandi and his army. Still, your faith held.

But as they days went on, doubt started to gnaw away at your soul. You led the dwindling faithful in prayer, begging for intervention when the Lord’s word came. The Grand Holy Army, pikes sharpened, armour gleaming like the sun, marched out of the city to crush the enemy. Two days later, a mere ten soldiers hobbled back to the city, bloody and broken. They lived long enough to speak of a horror like no other, a legion of metallic monsters that belched fire and which struck the ground with thunder. Many fled but those who still had faith in their righteousness pushed forward and drove their pikes in, shattering against the hide of those metal beasts.

The monsters are outside now. These “tanks”, according to the message sent by Emperor Ghandi, will remain there until the city surrenders, or starves. Yet some part of you still believed that your God would save you; till the day when God finally showed his true nature. They stood in the town square, men and women begging for intervention, crying out for salvation. And when no answer came, they started cursing His name. That was when he made His presence felt, for the first time in weeks.

There was no glowing light, no booming, remonstrating voice; just screams as, one by one, the protestors were lifted into the air as if by some invisible hand. Some were flung over the city walls, others struck buildings with a hideous thud, their broken bodies tumbling to the floor. That was three days ago and now you walk through the streets, packed with the dead and the dying, the sickening stench of decay. And, standing in that same city square, you can keep silent no more. You raise your first and curse your God, the same sadistic God who sent his faithful to fight an enemy they couldn’t hope to defeat.

You’re still cursing His name when you feel the tug on your shoulders.

Grand Theft Auto

You’ve been walking for as long as you can remember; in fact, it’s all you can remember. Every once in a while you’ll try to think back to when you started out but your past is as much a mystery to you as your name. Occasionally, as you walk the streets of the city, someone will call out an unfamiliar name to you, addressing you as if you were a close friend. But of the many varied names you’ve been called, none ever resonate and you walk on, a stranger to even yourself.

Night falls and still you walk. The streets have become your unwelcome companions; you’ve grown to know each corner, every stop sign and crossing. You’ve tried willing yourself to stop but nothing seems to work, as if you’re driven onwards by some unknown force. Could it be that you’ve done something terrible and are being punished for it? Is this Hell? Logic, if it even exists in this place, surely dictates that you’d be getting tired by now; or that you’d have walked your feet raw until you were shuffling along on bloody bone.

There is one brief glimmer of hope, that Death may one day take you. You know that he roams the roads of the city. Unlike the other drivers, he pays no heed to the rules of the road, racing swiftly through traffic to claim those who, presumably, have completed their penance. You saw him once, his car mounting the pavement as he obliterated a man who had been standing there moments before. You tried to shout, hoping that he’d see you and deliver you sweet, blessed release but no sound came out. Death merely reversed out and drove off, tyres screeching, oblivious to your inner pleas. As for the dead man, his journey was over.

But you? You walk on.

And if that wasn't unpleasant enough, there are a range of general miseries associated with being an NPC. You've got to deal with player characters who are bullet sponges and can take 20 bullets compared to the 2 it takes to kill you. Fail to lock your door and all your possessions are considered fair game by the "hero" who will gladly rob you while you watch. 20 gold coins you've been saving to buy your daughter a birthday present? Tough. It's his now. Don't get attached to that car, either; or your wallet, which will be stolen after the thief backs over you in your own vehicle.

So next time you're playing a video game, give a thought to the digital denizens to whom you may be, at best, an irritation and, at worst, the stuff of their nightmares.

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