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Video games have long been known as realms of the impossible. Even the most low-level ESPN commentators will refer to a particularly great performance by a player by saying something like "Those are video game numbers!" The difference is that an athlete like LeBron James is a real person, and Zelda is still a fantasy that will never come true, James, you loser.

But lo and behold, some gamers have found new ways to defy reality. You may remember the surprisingly intricate Mario Kart verite, but are you familiar with ...

5
Japanese Live-Action Pac-Man Is Performance Art Meets Goodfellas

Namco

One of the first games to thrive in both the arcade and console realms of the video game kingdom, Pac-Man is either a simple addictive diversion or a haunting allegory for man's struggle to navigate the maze of existence, ever pursued by the ghosts of his past.

Because Japan is the bedrock of both video games and pop-culture fever dreams, a Japanese television show attempted to recreate a game of Pac-Man in real life, using actors dressed as Pac and his colorful ghost adversaries. It's like an experimental theater troupe that even Portland thought was too weird got trapped inside an arcade machine.

via YouTube

via YouTube
Starring a mime, giant Kinder Surprises, and your own relentless nightmares.

In the game, when the ghosts close in on Pac-Man, that's the end for him, no matter how much theoretical Vitamin C he's managed to consume up to that point. For some reason, the producers of this show decided that the best way to represent this element of the game in reality would be to have the ghosts whip out baseball bats and beat the living snot out of Pac-Man, like they're Joe Pesci and Pac-Man is anyone else in a Joe Pesci movie.

via YouTube

via YouTube
"Hey, Blinky. Blinky, hurry up, will ya? My mother's gonna make some fried peppers and sausage for us."

Unfortunately, the YouTube video doesn't source which show this is from, so whether or not they made a followup piece in which Ms. Pac-Man grieves over Pac-Man's bloody corpse frustratingly eludes us.

4
A Giant Angry Birds Game, With Pumpkins For Birds

Rovio Entertainment

As disappointing as it will be when the Angry Birds movie turns out to not be a long-lost Hitchcock sequel, we have some good news to tide the world over until its release. Like Kevin McCallister with no burglars to brutally torture, Sam Beards used his technical ingenuity to bring the third-most-beloved bird-based iPhone game to life.

In the game, you fire the titular angry birds from a slingshot into hastily-constructed shelters housing green pigs, following a vague plot about rescuing eggs. It's basically what George Orwell would have come up instead of Animal Farm if he pounded half a dozen Red Bulls and had an IQ that could only be represented in fractions.

Sam uses pumpkins instead of birds, because a) PETA, probably and b) pumpkins tend to explode better than birds. Beards propped up the pumpkin pigs on bales of hay and wooden planks, and fired the angry bird pumpkins across the field from a giant slingsh-- holy shit, is that a cannon!?

Metro

Metro
"I am become death, destroyer of gourds."

The whole thing kind of feels like a whacked out origin story for a whacked out sci-fi Sleepy Hollow reboot.

Metro

Metro
One Hollow's not so sleepy anymore.

The moral of this story is that if we just allow the children of the world to operate insane giant pieces of machinery, you can save that sweet $1.99 you would have wasted in the Apple store.

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3
A Real-Life Donkey Kong Is A Gauntlet Of Pain

Nintendo

Mario's debut was in the classic game Donkey Kong (which hastily switched out Bluto for a giant ape and a plumber for Popeye). Clearly, if a King Kong scenario ever happened, a diminutive Italian who unclogs toilets for a living would be everyone's number-one choice to take care of business. A one-off TV special called Blastazoid, featuring several Jackass alumni, recreated the game with an actual five-story level.

Blastazoid

Blastazoid
And somehow made the graphics worse.

A guy dressed as Mario scales the structure, jumping over barrels as they're hurled toward him. At first, he seems to be doing pretty well ...

Blastazoid
"Way to jump, man."

Then, not so much:

Blastazoid
This looks painful, but at least they didn't try to recreate Chiller.

Apparently, in real life there's a lot more tripping and falling face-first than in the game, which really makes you wonder if Mario would have crippling brain damage if he were real. It also makes you wonder why DK doesn't simply break Mario's neck with a barrel as soon as he gets to the top.

Blastazoid
"The princess is in this castle, motherfucker! What are you going to do about it?"

2
Patient Zero Is A Real First-Person Shooter

id Software

The term "first-person shooter" covers a lot of ground, from gunning down monsters in Doom to brutally murdering innocent ducks while a grinning dog revels in the avian bloodbath. An Australian company replicated the FPS experience live with a Resident Evil-esque game called Patient Zero. In this "IRL Shooter," you can experience what it's really like to be in a zombie shoot-em-up. The only difference is that it's a bunch of jerks on some office team-building exercise helping you fire blanks at undead improv actors.

Gizmag

Gizmag
It kind of ruins the immersion when the zombies want to do West Side Story.

Players make their way through a series of rooms, which look convincingly creepy.

Gizmag

Gizmag
F.E.A.R. 4: Weekend Getaway ... Of Despair!

Based on one's chosen level of derangement, players are offered the option of wearing a "pain belt," which is less something that belongs in a FPS and more something that belongs in a training class for Rottweilers who have had a few too many munches on humans. This masochistic accessory inflicts actual pain when you're attacked by a, ugh, "zombie."

Gizmag
It simulates the experience of battling the deadliest game of all: desperate theater grads.

Supposedly, that tiny black box, which looks like the remote control that came with your parents' TV in 1986, can somehow replicate the sensation of having your skin ripped open and your bowels torn asunder and devoured by the living dead. Might as well shut down Guantanamo Bay now that we've got this marvel of technology.

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1
Real-Life Paperboy Is An Unimpressed Grown Man

Atari Games

The Nintendo of the 1980s and 1990s was like a toddler who had just discovered it could make adults praise it exuberantly merely by using a toilet correctly. They were still new to this whole endeavor, and proceeded to crap out some boring stuff for no other reason than to see how much love they could get. The answer turned out to be "probably too much," as evidenced by 1985's arcade hit Paperboy.

In the game, you're a paperboy who really got the short end of the stick when choosing routes. The poor bastard battles ghosts, fire-breathing demon sculptures, breakdancers, remote-control cars, and even the grim reaper. Even Death himself needs to keep up with current events.

Atari Games

Atari Games
"Nothing puts me in the mood to end some lives like reading Dear Abby."

A group called Mega64, who specialized in bringing video games to life, usually to prank people, decided to see how a real paperboy would react to such adversity. The answer was, as we could have expected, not good.

Of course, this being real life, the papers were being delivered in the ungodly pitch black of early morning. Paperboys on bicycles have been replaced by union-represented mailmen in a truck who have not quite felt the effects of their morning coffee by that point in the morning.

Mega 64

The gang of Paperboy's enemies begin to crowd the road, blocking the truck's way, and turning the real game into seeing how long he could suppress the urge to run these clowns over.

Mega 64

Mega 64

Mega 64
"Goddammit, do you chodes want to read Family Circus or not?"

Staying true to the game, there was even a ridiculous breakdancer.

Mega 64
Or a confused guy who came on the wrong day for the Mortal Kombat prank.

Rather than start hurling newspapers at his enemies, like a paperboy should, this poor man had to laboriously and lugubriously inch his car through the insanity of a bunch of kids who think dressing up and making YouTube videos in the dark constitutes a hard day's work.

Mega 64
"Hey, why don't you check the classifieds for a real goddamn job?"

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