Many famous video games have stuff hidden in them that most players will never find -- and in some (terrifying) cases, that's a good thing. Sometimes developers go through the trouble of creating a frighteningly elaborate Easter egg knowing well that only a select few will ever see it ... but that select few will be irrevocably changed by the experience.
This shit creeps us out, is what we're saying.
#6. Skyrim -- The Secret Room of the Dead
Where do people go when they die? It all depends on who you ask, and if you ask Skyrim, the answer is, apparently, "To a dark, weirdly colored, cross-shaped room far under the ground."
Bethesda Game Studios
Inaccessible in the Xbox version, ironically.
What you're looking at is the Skyrim death room. (Alternate names include the Underworld, That Place With All the Dead People, and "Holy shit, what is this?") It's a room underneath the ground that's filled with the corpses of non-player characters who have died in the game. Not all NPCs go there, of course. Only the unlucky few do. Some are allowed a proper death; others are automatically banished to this small room in the middle of nowhere where they languish in a pile in the ground for all eternity.
And while you can only reach it by hacking or running into a game bug, it's totally intentional -- the name of the room in the game's code is WIDeadBodyCleanupCell, and it's even got two little coffins down there to let you know just where you are.
Bethesda Game Studios
Hell. Nudie hell. That is where you are.
Also, although the ends of the crossed corridors are open, they don't lead anywhere. Walking out of them simply drops you back in the middle of the death room, like in those endless loop levels in Super Mario 3, but with more death stench. Even the few dead NPCs who are up walking around can't leave. The room can be useful if you accidentally killed some poor character and still need to talk to him or her (again, only a few seem to make it down there), but otherwise it's just there to make you crap your pants and never play the game again.
#5. Red Dead Redemption -- The Ghost Town of Tumbleweed
We've told you before about some of the insane things you can find in Red Dead Redemption, like the accidental human-animal hybrids or the rampant sexism, but there's at least one thing that seems to be highly unsettling on purpose.
You may have seen newspapers in the game mentioning Tumbleweed, a ghost town in the New Austin territory. In fact, the game seems to go out of its way to imply that Tumbleweed is a literal ghost town in addition to just being abandoned: The newspapers say things like "Following recent reports of ghost sightings in the abandoned town of Tumbleweed, visitors are continuing to tell of unnatural happenings and strange feelings."
"In unrelated news, a talking Great Dane has been spotted in the vicinity with some oddly clothed youngsters."
If you actually bother to visit the place, it's not exactly a full-on spook show, but there are some rather creepy goings-on. The large abandoned mansion in town, for example, is filled with odd mutterings and occasional whispers. It turns out there's even an explanation hidden in the game that you're not supposed to come across. A player managed to get through an otherwise unopenable door and found that the developers had stacked several (alive?) people inside the room, apparently solely to create the noises you hear in the house.
"You will paaay for yooour ... Oh, uh, hi there. *Cough*"
Then there's something even more mysterious. Throughout Tumbleweed, you can hear a dog barking constantly. There are, however, no dogs to be found in Tumbleweed. If you follow the barks, you're led to the town cemetery, where the barks originate, but again, there's no dog. But then if you enter the church next to that cemetery, carved into the pulpit you'll see "The Devil has got into that beast."
Marsten resisted the urge to carve an R in "Beast."
What beast? It doesn't say, but "ghost dog" sounds like a pretty reasonable explanation to us. This means there's apparently a possessed invisible dog going around the game, possibly watching you when you poop.
#4. Black & White -- The Game Whispers Your Name
Black & White is a god-simulator PC game, meaning you can be a benevolent deity who answers the prayers of his subjects or a dickish one who laughs and sips Mountain Dew as everyone starves. Both the original and its sequel are great games to play late at night while wearing headphones, due to a feature where you'll occasionally hear a creepy voice whispering "deaaaaath." This informs you that a villager has passed away, but when you hear it whispered directly into your ear as you're sitting alone in a dark room, it also serves as a friendly reminder of your own unavoidable mortality.
As a reminder of other limitations of the body, animals will sometimes take giant shits.
But don't worry, it's just a game -- it's not like the game is whispering that word to you personally. What's weird is that, every once in a while, instead of saying "death," the voice will actually whisper your real name.
By Yahoo's standards, that counts as "resolved."
There's no official explanation for this fun little Easter egg, but from what the players have gathered, the game picks up your name either when you set up your profile or from Windows itself. Yep, it can do that -- the game actually integrates itself with your email program and has villagers named after your friends alert you when you have mail, so we guess you're lucky the death voice isn't whispering stuff like "Permanently add inches to your maaaaanhooood."
Anyway, after the game has found out what you're called, it checks to see if your name is on the list of recorded names included in the game files, then brings up the clip at random times to spook you. Here's the MP3 file with all the names in the English version (they recorded different names for all available languages):
If your name isn't on the above list and the game still whispers it, we'd strongly suggest calling an exorcist. Oh, and before you start feeling safe because you don't play PC games, console games are perfectly capable of spying on you, too -- like in Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes, when a mind-reading enemy, Psycho Mantis, creeps you out by telling you exactly what other games you've been playing. This time the trick works by reading your memory card to see what games are saved there, meaning that this scene can last 20 seconds or 10 minutes, depending on how much of a nerd you are.
"And I see you've been enjoying [BROWSED PORN ON PS3 TILL 4 A.M.]."