When gaming bites back: The best owns in video game history (part 2)
One of the worst times I ever got roasted while playing video games was in the original Dark Souls co-op mode. I had been summoned into someone's world, but instead of entering through the fog door so I could help them take out a boss, I was dropped in the middle of a poison swamp. For 10 minutes I received a PlayStation Network message that simply read, "p i t i f u l man," before I was bounced back to my own game with no real explanation.
Unfortunately, this kind of player-on-player own has only become more common as online multiplayer gaming became more popular, but not all in-game slams come from other players. Sometimes its the game itself that ends up mocking you.
We've rounded up some of our favorite video game owns from Dark Souls to Zelda. Enjoy this walk through memory lane — and be sure to check out part 1 of our series if you haven't already.
Golden Sun's non-canon ending when you refuse to save the world
First, you'll have to sit through a long, boring intro section where you're a small, powerless child. This is followed by an even longer boring tutorial dungeon before the game's villains make off with four magic MacGuffins called the Elemental Stars that will cause the world to collapse into ruin if they're not returned.
At this point, the village elder asks you and your best friend if you're willing to risk your lives to get the magic MacGuffins back. Surprisingly, the game gives you the option to say no. If you decline the adventure, you'll get a single, sepia still frame informing you that the world quietly falls into ruin.
It always feels weird when an RPG gives you a choice as to whether or not you want to save the world and then just forces you to agree with it anyway. But it's infinitely weirder when the game gives you the option to say no, takes your word for it and says something along the lines of: fine smart-ass, you don't have to save the world, now look at all the digital blood on your hands.
Enter the Gungeon knows that you're probably bad at the game
Enter the Gungeon, Dodge Roll's bullet hell-styled rogue-like, has a lot of references in its guns and items. References to Cowboy Bebop, Warhammer 40k and the film Looper are all included. It also takes a lot of cues from Dungeons & Dragons, most notably the fact that all the characters in the game are horrible jerks who want loot and nothing more.
To that point, there is only one NPC helper in the game's procedurally-generated levels who can die: a cop you can summon with passive badge item who makes constant references to how close he is to retirement. If your cop partner dies, he'll give a little speech while you hold him in your arms:
Kid ... listen up. Today might have been my last day on the force, and I might have only been down here because of you ... but this ain't your fault. Yeah, yeah, you let me get hit by all those bullets. Sure, you probably could've given me one of those fancy guns you've been hoarding. But the point is, this ain't your fault. Give my badge to my kids. Tell them I love them.
It should be noted that at no point do you have the option to give your police officer buddy any of the guns you've gained from opening chests and killing bosses. As if that weren't bad enough, Enter the Gungeon also makes fun of its own difficulty with an item simply called "crutch." To add insult to injury, the item's flavor text is "You Need It," and its Ammonomicon entry is as follows:
Everybody needs a little help, sometimes. With this crutch, every bullet fired will try really hard to hit a target, even if aimed incorrectly.
Joke's on you, Enter the Gungeon — we meant to aim five feet behind that enemy on purpose.
Legend Of Zelda: Skyward Sword finally calls Link out for his wanton disrespect for personal property
It's no secret that Link has a fever for breaking peoples' pots and cutting their grass for items, but until Skyward Sword came out no one felt empowered to call him out on this. In the 2011 game, you eventually reach a sleepy little bar in Skyloft called the Lumpy Pumpkin, which is home to a couple of sad weirdos and an extremely glitzy chandelier with a piece of heart and some rupees on top.
If you talk to Kina, the waitress, she'll have a lot to say about how you shouldn't fool around near the chandelier — especially not on the second level where you might knock the chandelier down. So naturally, your first instinct will be to go upstairs and roll into the support beam as many times at it takes to make that sucker fall down onto the nearest table. Everyone is aghast of course, including the owner, a rather stout man with a strong mustache named Pumm.
Pumm demands to know what exactly your damage is and, far from allowing you to get off with a simple mea culpa, demands you pay the cost of a new chandelier by helping out around the Lumpy Pumpkin. It's not terribly strenuous work, but it is probably the first time in a long while that anyone has had the certitude to ask what the heck is up with the shrieking, green-garbed mute who runs into places, rolls into every wall he can and then leaves. Good on ya, Pumm.
Dark Souls 2 acknowledges exactly how hard it is with an achievement
FromSoftware's Souls series of games have a bit of a reputation for being difficult (unearned or not) and featuring a lot of obtuse mechanics. Although it's a little bit of a dark horse when it comes to Hidetaka Miyazaki's oeuvre (it's the only game the series creator didn't direct), Dark Souls 2 isn't afraid to have a little bit of fun. Case in point, the first time you die in Dark Souls 2, you'll get an achievement simply called "This is Dark Souls."
The graphic even looks like your bloodstain when you die in-game. We'd be extremely pleased by that if we weren't so annoyed at the prospect of having to run all the way back through the game's first area to claim our hard-earned souls.
Curse of Monkey Island's fake ending gives you a score of zero and rolls credits
Children, gather 'round. Many years ago, there was a studio called LucasArts (founded by George Lucas of Star Wars fame) who made a bunch of really great point-and-click adventure games. One, in particular, Curse of Monkey Island, was not only extremely fun but incredibly funny as well.
As part of the game's story, however, the series' main character Guybrush Threepwood mixes medicine and alcohol — which he points out you should never do in real life — and appears to drop dead immediately.
You're then treated to a short scene that ends with a gravedigger burying you in a mausoleum. The game informs you that you scored zero out of a possible 800 points, a callback to older adventure games like Sierra's King's Quest, which would award you points for different actions you completed in the game.
During these fake credits, Guybrush continually calls out from his coffin before putting a stop to the whole thing. The scene's funny even without a lot of the game's context.
Of course, this is only a small sampling of all the in-jokes at players' expenses there are in video games, and we're certain to see more in the coming years. Hopefully, you've avoided the worst of these, and if not, all you can do is grin and bear it — it is only a game, after all.
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