Even more than the video games themselves, the most hardcore gamers love to delve into their secrets. They spend their time looking for cheats that reveal Lara Croft in Tomb Raider that don’t exist, looking for characters shrouded in mystery on the giant maps of various parts of GTA, and willing to believe every rumor on the forums. And the most mysterious of them eventually turn into real myths and legends of the world of video games.
Mysterious Street Fighter 2 character
Remember the Street Fighter 2 character Sheng Long? If not, then this is not surprising, because he existed only in the form of a mistake of translators who, when prescribing Ryu’s lines, translated the name of his signature move «Shoryuken» as «Sheng Long».
Then on April 1, 1992, Electronic Gaming Monthly took advantage of this error and published an entire article that supposedly explained how to unlock the secret character. As a result, the material migrated to other publications, and after the manual for Street Fighter 2 for SNES, Sheng Long was mentioned as Ryu and Ken’s teacher, the players were completely confused. Although repeating the joke in 1997, EGM later stated that there was no Sheng Long, players continued to believe in his existence in the universe of the series.
This is not about the shooter Kill Switch of 2003, but about the mysterious title of the late 80s, which may have been developed by the Soviet studio Karvina Corporation. In fact, you can add «maybe» to every detail of Killswitch’s past, because it is still not clear whether the game even existed at all.
According to the stories, if the player reached the finals, Killswitch deleted itself, so it will be very difficult to find her. As for the gameplay, in the face of one of the two characters, the girl Porto and the invisible demon Gast, the player had to get out of the underground mine, fighting zombie miners and other monsters.
That being said, for all the implausibility of the story, there is a surprising amount of information describing every aspect of Killswitch that may have been released in five thousand copies.
The Pokemon franchise is filled with all sorts of myths, but the creepiest of them all is without a doubt the story of the Lavender Town location from Pokémon Red & Green for the Game Boy. It’s one of the only places in the game that doesn’t have a Pokemon Gym, but does have… a Pokemon Tower Graveyard. There, the player encounters pokemon ghosts, as well as trainers mourning their departed pets.
According to legend, the atmosphere of the levels seemed so depressing to Japanese children that it sent them straight into depression, and the strange and creepy soundtrack caused several of them to commit suicide. There was even talk that the developers achieved this consciously, using special frequencies in the melody that affect consciousness in a certain way.
PlayStation 2 for Saddam Hussein
On March 4, 2000, the PlayStation 2 was released, and a few months later, the current President of Iraq, Saddam Hussein, purchased four thousand new consoles. At least that’s what was on the news. They reported that Hussein decided to build a military supercomputer from the 128-bit processors built into the PS2, then to use it to navigate warheads. Of course, the story was a fiction that worked perfectly against the backdrop of US conflicts with Iraq.
The history of Pale Luna is not some speculation of the gaming community, but a simple horror story, which, however, became popular enough that people started scouring Ebay in search of an ominous title.
At some point, copies of the Pale Luna text quest began to circulate around San Francisco, which was not easy to complete. Every time the player chose the wrong course of action, Pale Luna would freeze, forcing them to start all over again.
One of those who decided to sit out until the final was a young man, Michael Nevins. After beating the game, he saw two rows of numbers on the screen, which turned out to be the coordinates of the forest in the Lassen Volcanic National Park. Arriving at the right place, Nevins to his amazement found the head of a child, namely 11-year-old Karen Paulsen, who went missing a year ago. The police were never able to find the Pale Luna programmer.
As a result, fans of this story have developed a prototype Pale Lune, which allows anyone who wants to go in search of Paulsen.
Herobrine is a ghost in the world of Minecraft, the first messages about which appeared on the forums in 2010. According to the descriptions of eyewitnesses, from time to time they stumbled upon a default character without eyes, which never allows you to get close to him and disappears. In addition, players found buildings that only a living player could make. The icing on the cake was the story of one of the eyewitnesses that after several attempts to tell others about the mysterious character, a certain user under the nickname Herobrine wrote to him: “STOP”.
Minecraft creator Markus Persson said that there is no Herobrine in the game, but decided to play a trick on the players by adding the line «Herobrine removed» to the list of improvements in the 1.6.6 update.
Herobrine later appeared in the game thanks to the efforts of modders.
Children of Goldshire
It is not surprising that such a rich world as World of Warcraft, has not done without its secrets and mysteries. One of them was a children’s Satanic cult, whose meeting can be observed in the Goldshire location every day at about 7 am.
This time, the story is not a fan fiction, and anyone can see how six children form a pentagram in one of the Goldshire houses. Creepy music plays in the house, and the player, standing among the children, begins to hear strange screams, growls and omens of death.
Blizzard’s love of cows began in the first Diablo, in which the player could click on a cow to make it moo. At some point, a myth was launched that a certain combination of clicks allows you to travel to a parallel dimension, where cows armed with axes walk around.
Blizzard liked the idea so much that they added cow levels to Diablo 2 and 3. In addition, during the loading screen of World of Warcraft, you can see a hint: «There is no cow level», which also acts as a cheat for Starcraft.
Bigfoot and Rat Man in GTA
According to players, there are two elusive creatures roaming the Grand Theft Auto universe.
The first resembles Bigfoot and can be found in the forests of San Andreas in the eponymous part of the line. There is even a screenshot with his image, but he, rather, was the result of the work of modders. As for Rockstar Games, the company has repeatedly denied the presence of a monster in the game, but at the same time played with the fans with phrases like:
«Just like in real life, Bigfoot doesn’t exist, but something does live among the trees.»
If Bigfoot, most likely, exists only in the imagination of bored players, then the “rat man” may well live in the subway of Liberty City from GTA 4. There is a lot of evidence for this. The radio talks about a chemical leak at an abandoned factory and rat problems on the subway. Comedians joke about an unusually fast homeless man, and in the subway you can periodically hear the cry «Get out!», Not to mention strange orange footprints in different places.
Fallout 3 predicts the future
Despite Bethesda’s unequivocal statements that this legend is nothing but fan fiction, many are still convinced that Fallout 3 predicts the future.
In order for the radio station GNR to start broadcasting cryptic messages, it is necessary to kill DJ Three Dog, and then destroy Raven Rock without completing the «Galaxy News Radio» mission. After that, the seemingly killed Three Dog should begin to read out the numbers, followed by a message encrypted using Morse code.
One of the DJ’s messages includes a catchphrase, as well as the date and time of actor Gary Coleman’s death («1-2-5-5-2-8-2-0-1-0, what you talkin’ bout? You will be missed. «), who died at 12:05 pm on May 28, 2010 (Fallout 3 came out in 2008). Another in the same way refers to April 20, 2010, when the Deepwater Horizon oil platform exploded.
Among other things, Three Dog predicted that Britney Spears would win an Oscar in 2023, but they were wrong when they said that the Queen of Great Britain will pass away on March 19, 2014.
The Mario brothers franchise has always delighted players with cheerful light adventures, no matter what genre it looks into. However, fans of the line couldn’t ignore the fact that Luigi’s Mansion, which follows Mario’s older brother Luigi’s adventures in a haunted mansion, contrasts with the rest of the games in the series.
At some point when Luigi is talking on the phone, the player may notice the protagonist’s shadow in the light of lightning, as if he is hanging from the ceiling. While many dismissed the frightening shadow as a simple glitch, others pointed to the fact that Nintendo originally intended a darker story for Luigi’s Mansion, and the shadow was carried over from a previous version of the game.
All this led to the creation of the theory that Luigi killed himself before the game even started.
The myth of Polybius is perhaps the most ambitious in the gaming industry, and the game itself has managed to become part of modern pop culture.
According to legend, in 1981, several black Polybius arcade machines appeared in the city of Portland. The game was a tunnel shooter, like Tempest, and was actively gaining popularity among the players. However, after a while, people who played Polybius began to complain of headaches and nausea. Some fainted, while others began to have seizures. There was even talk of cases of amnesia. In addition, according to eyewitnesses, people in black suits came every day and downloaded the statistics of the games played on the machine.
It is still not clear whether this game existed or not. The story of Polybius is said to have been born out of a long-running rumor in the 80s about an FBI agent collecting information from slot machines. The rumor was backed up by the fact that the US Army actually approached Atari to develop a game that would teach soldiers how to operate the Bradley UGP. The result of their collaboration was a special version of the Battlezone military simulator called The Bradley Trainer.
In 2007, GameSpot interviewed one Steven Roach, who he says developed the game along with three other programmers at his Sinneschlossen studio, founded in 1978.
The problems began when a 13-year-old boy had an epileptic seizure while testing Polybius, causing the project to be shut down. According to Roach, there were only 7 Polybius slot machines. Where is the truth here, and where is the lie — is unknown.
The more cliffhangers, easter eggs, glitches and interesting development details in the title, the more playground for the insatiable fantasy of the gaming community. Interesting myths and legends can add popularity and mysticism even to the most unsuccessful title, because of which players will launch it again and again.