Archive for the Insanity Category

Neverending Nightmares

Posted in Insanity, Review, Uncategorized, Videogames with tags , , , , , , on January 6, 2015 by Stephanie Selby

NeverendingNightmaresSorry for the blank post earlier! I try to schedule different posts in advance to plan out what I’m going to write as well as motivate me, but this time it seems to have backfired. Let’s put all that nonsense aside and talk about a creepy videogame shall we? No I’m not trying to totally distract you from my inept management of my blog! Can we just move on? …Pretty please?

I must admit this little review has been a long time coming. I played Neverending Nightmares back in October, but life and other interests have put this on the back burner until now.

I was really excited to play this when I first heard about it. I love to try a lot of weird, offbeat games. Some of you may recall my post about Sanitarium, an old adventure game that’s near and dear to my heart. Another good example would be Tale of Tales’ The Path, which I may write about in the future.

As for Neverending Nightmares, you take on the role of Thomas, a young man lost in a disturbing dream world that he’s unable to wake from. Whether he’s successful or lost forever is up to interpretation.

The art style is an illustrated white and black world with little additional colors for important additions. Red is the most prominent to highlight the gore of course. It’s rather impressive and refreshing, offering a bleak setting to build atmosphere.

Enemies are pretty freaky too, from monster baby dolls, insane inmates, and even a murderous doppleganger that managed to freak me out. While gameplay is cut down to the basics and Thomas generally has to side scroll through the environment, there are moments where one has to use different tactics to get past enemies.

This is a very slow-paced game as Thomas is a slow walker, can barely run, and different setting can last for a little too long. I know I say this a lot, but you’re going to need your patience when playing this. If you’re not the type, then you’re better off skipping this one.

While that’s only a minor nitpick, there are major aspects that bother me a lot more. The whole endeavor seems somewhat aimless. I understand that these are how dreams are often experienced and they can be unclear and confusing for us, but that leaves the game with a very unsubstantial plot. That may have been okay for some if the game play was more engaging, but with neither it just becomes a series of scary scenarios with little context.

I’ll give you an example. The second most prominent character is Gabrielle. Most of the game she’s established as Thomas’ sister, but a long different branches of the narrative (there are different endings) she’s also his therapist, daughter, or wife. I understand that she’s an important person to Thomas, but how can anyone gain insight from this information alone?

My point is that it’s these shifting narratives that make any kind of speculation about what is really going on with Thomas or why it may be happening. In fact as someone who over analyzes just about everything, I’m left just scratching my head. There’s almost nothing to base a solid theory here.

With no story or real challenge to the game there’s little reward for going through this experience.

The bottom line here is while the atmosphere and art are skillfully terrifying, there is no concrete story or gameplay for gamers to sink their teeth into. It’s a slow, spooky experience that won’t last long on one’s mind. I’d recommend checking it out if you’re like me and love trying experimental games, but wait to get this thing on a Steam sale or something.

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Weird Video of the Week

Posted in Creepy, Insanity, Uncategorized, Videogames, Weird Videos with tags , , , , , , , , , , on October 24, 2014 by Stephanie Selby

As we get closer to that wonderful day of Halloween, the excitement in the air is almost tangible! Anyone got big plans for it? I’m curious if any readers here do something out of the ordinary. Normally I enjoy a fairly quiet evening of candy and movies, then perform a Samhain ritual to honor the dead.

Sorry for the lack of Jeff updates recently, but to make up for it I’ll make the next extra long.

Anyway, this week’s video is a look into a funny character. Perhaps a little too funny… Enjoy!

Weird Video of the Week

Posted in History, Insanity, Weird Locations, Weird Videos with tags , , , , , , , , , on August 29, 2014 by Stephanie Selby

I’ve got a very special WVotW for you all! A YouTuber by the name of Rob Dyke started a contest for people with more modest channels. The winner will receive new equipment to help make their channel better.

For my entry, I not only talked about how I would use the prize, but I also give a small tour of Lakewood’s Fort Stilecoom Park – once a part of Washington’s Western State Hospital, an insane asylum that still exists nearby. I hope you all enjoy and with luck, you’ll be seeing more videos like this!

Weird Video of the Week

Posted in Film, Insanity, Uncategorized, Weird Videos with tags , , , , , , , on July 11, 2014 by Stephanie Selby

This week’s video shows how the mind can play some dirty tricks on us. Have a great weekend!

Weird Video of the Week

Posted in Film, Insanity, Weird Videos with tags , , , , , , on June 13, 2014 by Stephanie Selby
Cheers!

Cheers!

Happy Friday the 13th everyone! Hope you all have some fun plans for tonight, and be sure to be nice to all the fathers this weekend too. This week’s video a look into a man with multiple personalities. Enjoy!

Opinion on the Slenderman Murder Attempt

Posted in Children, Creepypasta, In the News, Insanity, Murder with tags , , , , , , , on June 3, 2014 by Stephanie Selby

Normally I like to comment on news events when they relate to typical RitS subject matter, but I never thought I’d write about something like this…

Apparently two 12 year old Wisconsin girls attempted to kill a mutual friend in order to please Slenderman, a well-known character created on the internet. Believing Slenderman to be real, they had the bright idea to commit the crime and run away to become proxies; basically his servants. Fortunatly, as of this writing the victim is still alive and recovering in the hospital.

As a creepypasta fan, I cannot describe how disturbing and stupid this crime is to me. Not only were they willing to harm someone they knew, planning it over several months, but for something intangible as internet fiction. It’s very clear that Slenderman is a work of fiction-people often mention how he was created by Something Awful members. Nothing in his mythology suggests that he favors people who kill in his name or has a mansion somewhere that he takes people to. In stories I’ve read, Slenderman drives people insane, murders them and leaves their organs in little plastic bags, or simply makes them disappear. I really want to smack both these girls in the head and yell at them about this differences between reality and fiction, and ask them how they managed to come up with all this crap.

I do however, realize many people following this story may be getting a crash-course in creepypasta and Slenderman, so let me give you some basics:

1. Slenderman is a fictional monster made up in a Something Awful photoshop contest. People took the idea and ran with it, making up countless stories and even a few video series and games. His common traits include having no face, wearing a black suit, having tentacles, teleporting, messing with people’s minds, and using these abilities to  kidnap children and terrorize adults. You can read more about him here.

2. Creepypasta is a term for short, scary stories spread around the internet. There are famous Creepypasta characters, much like there are many famous horror movie villains. Some examples include Jeff the Killer, the Rake, Smile Dog, Ben, and more.  Creepypasta is no secret, Google it and it’s easy to find all kinds of information – particularly that they are all a work of fiction.

3. Creepypasta fans do not advocate murder or any other heinous, harmful actions. We just like reading and writing scary stories. No more, no less. We’re just as upset about what these girls have done as everyone else.

Most of all I have to ask all of you out there to please don’t start spouting that creepypasta, the internet, or videogames are harmful. They are not the root of this problem. I would argue the lack of good parenting and mental healthcare are. If you don’t want your kids reading horror stories, keep an eye on what they’re doing on the net. Spend some time with your kid and get to know them – this will make it easier to spot any psychiatric problems if any exist. You know, the kind of things a responsible parent is supposed to do anyway?

My hopes are with the victim and that she recovers quickly from this terrible event. The creepypasta community has started a fundraiser for her, and I highly recommend giving what you can to help her and her family through this ordeal.

Creepypasta Critique: Psychosis

Posted in Creepypasta, Film, Insanity, Short Stories, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , on February 18, 2014 by Stephanie Selby

I feel like sharing my thoughts about creepypasta today. The particular story we’ll be discussing this time is a tale titled Psychosis, written by Matt Dymerski. You can read it here, if you like.

For those of you who only need a quick summary, it goes like this: a young programmer who lives in a basement apartment has spent the past several days working alone in his home, seeing and talking to no other human beings, even online or by phone. Strange occurrences take place throughout the next few days that lead the protagonist to believe that something terrible has happened to the rest of the population. Events eventually build up until he has a psychotic break.

Psychosis’ primary themes deal with isolation and paranoia. His situation is realistic, the clues that leave him questioning are subtle, and the idea that technology is out to get him and the rest of humanity is used effectively. I especially love the protagonist’s shifts from outright fear to certainty that everything is all right, until that one moment that leaves him questioning things all over again. It’s a very well thought out story that has definitely earned its place in the realm of classic creepypasta.

However there is one issue that I feel is worth discussing. Personally, the biggest problem I have with Psychosis is its ending. It reminds me of the end of the movie adaptation of Stephen King’s The Mist. King’s original short story had the main group driving around in the car with a dwindling amount of fuel and wondering what they would do once it ran out. It left their ultimate fate pretty ambiguous and the reader could use their own imagination to what could have happened. Unfortunately the film adaption decided that the protagonist would mercy-kill his son and companions and try to kill himself, only to find out they were minutes from safety. It’s an ending that only leaves a bitter taste in one’s mouth, and puts a painful damper to what is otherwise a good story.

I’m not saying Psychosis has a bad ending though. It is much, MUCH better than the film adaptation of The Mist. It’s a very creepy ending that works well for what it is, and it’s likely just my personal tastes that leave me questioning how things could be different. I feel that Psychosis could have benefited more from an ambiguous ending in the same way that The Mist’s film adaptation would have.

The problem with these types of endings is that they reveal answers to mysteries that were better left unknown. In my opinion, Psychosis would benefit more as a creepypasta if readers were left wondering about events. Is there really something out there possessing and imitating humans? Or is it just the insane ramblings of a man who has cut himself off from human contact for too long? The idea of leaving the audience questioning is more appealing to me than setting the record straight.

Any thoughts out there about this tale? Feel free to share.