The 8 Creepiest Glitches Hidden in Popular Video Games
We've told you about the creepiest video game Easter eggs ever found. But Easter eggs are hidden details that someone intentionally put there to mess with you -- their horror is still limited by the human imagination. No, the most terrifying game moments are when lines of code go awry to make characters start looking, and behaving, like monsters.
Lines of code, or maybe demonic possession. You be the judge.
Call of Duty Series -- A Glitch Raises the Dead
While some of the Call of Duty games have a zombie mode, there are far scarier, unintentional zombies in the regular game. You'll be playing along in what is distinctly not supposed to be a level with zombies, and suddenly you run into this:
What do you know, war is hell.
... a mutilated corpse, standing perfectly still in the hall, its arms spread wide.
The problem is that to the computer that runs your video games, there's not a whole lot of difference between a live character and a dead one. They're all just lines of code. It's just that some are programmed to move around and talk and some are programmed to lie motionless on the ground. Sometimes those lines of code get mixed up, and you fucking get the stuff of nightmares. Like this:
That's a completely dead dude in Call of Duty: Black Ops. At first he's just laying there, moving his lips without saying anything, as if he were mouthing secret obscenities only the undead are privy to.
"... that's right. With a donkey."
But then, after you shoot at him (not while you shoot, but some seconds later), his body parts start twisting themselves over and over like he's being resurrected by the alien from The Thing -- at one point it looks like his head is going to snap off on its own.
It rejects its own bones and steals yours away.
Also, this happens in other games from the same series: here's a dead guy talking in Call of Duty 2 (and another one), and if you're not planning on sleeping anytime soon, feast your eyes upon the undead human vibrator from Call of Duty 3:
It's like he died while performing a break dance routine and his body simply refused to stop going. Even though he has no legs.
We're not sure who just got served here.
And it happens in other types of games, too: check out this twitching face in Crysis (and another one), this dead guy desperately fanning himself in Far Cry 2 and a dead lady turning her head around in Red Dead Redemption.
Here, we'll leave you with this winking corpse in Infamous:
"HELL IS HERE."
Red Dead Redemption -- The Manimals
Red Dead Redemption is every cowboy movie ever in video game form. You ride horses, shoot six shooters and rob trains, and if you look closely, you may be shocked to discover that the game disc itself has two days' worth of stubble.
Even his farts make a p-ting! noise.
But while wandering around the game's vast deserts, you may come across something ... unsettling. Fans call them the Manimals, and they are things that even nightmares have forgotten. They are horrifyingly bizarre human/animal hybrids, like from some sort of carnival sideshow.
There are the Bird-People -- human beings who fly around the skies by flapping their arms like we all believed we could when we were children.
You thought regular bird shit was bad.
Then you have deformed horrors such as Snake-Man, who is little more than a rattling, hissing torso with a head twisted at an 180-degree angle and bulging, soulless eyes.
"What the hell has happened to my dick?"
Others, while appearing outwardly human, have the attributes of their animal side, such as Cougar-Man -- a bearded man charging around on his knees, yowling and clawing at the player like a cat.
Half-man, half-cougar, all Amish.
And sometimes you can find the opposite -- human characters replaced by animals, up to and including mission-critical NPCs. The Gunslinger Dog, for example, is a floating coyote wielding a freaking rifle and speaking with a Mexican accent.
In the sequel you get to take him around and solve crimes.
However, none of these compare to the utter terror that is the Donkey-Woman. The Donkey-Woman is, obviously, a donkey replaced with a woman model upon whose shoulders you can ride like a very easygoing prostitute. But that's not all. In a true mockery of humanity, the Donkey-Woman appears mostly human ... all except for the black horse head jutting out of her face.
"I like oats and long walks in other dimensions."
And this isn't people hacking or some sort of one-off series of glitches. Rockstar Games has actually acknowledged the bug and (luckily, for all our immortal souls) released a patch to fix it.
As if anything could fix a nightmare.
Super Smash Bros. Brawl -- Pikaman And Other Terrifying Mashups
What's cooler than Mario fighting Sonic for video game mascot dominance? How about Mario fighting Sonic, but with Link's moves? Yeah, what if you could merge the characters to get cool hybrids! Let's see what happens when hackers merged Solid Snake with Donkey Kong ...
Behold, Donkey Snake.
OH HOLY GOD NO.
This horror came about when fans decided to hack their copies of Super Smash Bros. Brawl and perform what are known as "moveset swaps" -- taking one character and swapping out its moves and abilities for another character's, which seems perfectly innocent. But there was one horrifying consequence no one could have anticipated: Changing character movesets rearranges the character models as well (since the moves were designed assuming the limbs would be in certain places), with horrific deformities as a result.
So Pikachu with Ganondorf's moves becomes, well, see for yourself...
... yes. This is exactly what cosplay looks like.
"Children. Children are what we require."
Meanwhile, Link/Meta-Knight creates a crab-shaped monstrosity...
He's as baffled as we are repulsed.
And Giga Bowser/Jigglypuff (whom we've taken the liberty of naming Gigglypuff) becomes this fucking thing:
Peach/Kirby, on the other hand, looks like the most horrifying sex doll ever -- Her eyes a blank stare, her mouth twisted into a ghoulish scream. All the while her arms flop uselessly around her body.
Her eyes never close. And now, neither will yours.
It's like the game itself is trying to punish you for trying to play God (or Shigeru Miyamoto, we guess), turning your attempts to merge cool characters into unspeakable horrors worthy of Dr. Moreau.
Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas -- The Ghost Cars of the Forest
We've previously mentioned some creepy things in Grand Theft Auto IV, and it turns out these open-world sandbox games really lend themselves to dark pockets of undiscovered horror.
Likewise, Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas is specifically known for its urban legends and weird occurrences, which makes sense when you consider how enormous the game world is. There are so many myths about things you can find in the game that people are still discussing them seven years later. But among all the stories of UFOs and murderers and cryptids, there is one legend that's actually true: The Ghost Cars.
"Hey man, have you seen a dog and some kids running around here?"
If you venture out into the hilly countryside, away from the city, you'll find the automotive equivalent of Bigfoot: cars with no drivers roaming around the game. Sometimes they chase you, as if possessed by the spirits of drivers you jacked months ago.
The glitch is due to the fact that the game engine only spawns cars in the player's immediate area, and when you're in the hilly, country areas of the game's map, a car will appear on a hill and just roll like a real-life runaway car until it either eventually stops or hits something (most hilariously when it's you).
The chase music is "Yakety Sax" with broken violins.
The Sims 3 -- Demon Babies
The Sims is intended to turn the most boring thing (real life) into something ... slightly less boring, we guess? But the point is, much like real life, when something goes really wrong, it's terrifying. You can find YouTube videos for everything from Sims with flashing blue shapes for faces, Sims swimming through the floor everywhere they go, disembodied heads fucking (that's not a euphemism, by the way), Sims with distorted limbs and even Sim babies with terrifying deformed heads.
The Eraserhead baby's got nothing on this kid.
But nothing is quite as strange as ... whatever the following is. We'll warn you now. Upon viewing these images, you may taste blood. That's normal. That's how you know that you're still human.
Occasionally, you can have two perfectly normal Sims. They have their usual traits, hopes, dreams ... and they just happen to give birth to some sort of demon spawn straight out of Lovecraft.
It's a face only the Mother of Lies could love.
It appears that the baby's head is attached to some sort of malformed adult body. It's easier to see in some other videos.
It's like Slenderman's birthing video.
But what's even crazier is that it doesn't just happen with adult bodies. Sometimes it happens with ... other things. Like horses. Yeah.
Here seen enveloping its owner.
The most common explanation is poorly programmed user-made clothing. Since 99 percent of all Sims user-made clothing is to make your Sims appear to be nude, we can only assume that this glitch primarily affects perverts. Naturally, no one ever admits to downloading nudie stuff when it comes to explaining their horse babies.
Rocky (PS2) -- The Rocky Horror Glitchy Show
Here are some things a PlayStation game about Rocky should include: boxing, Sylvester Stallone's likeness, the song "Gonna Fly Now," possibly a training montage. Here are some things it shouldn't include: abject horror, unspeakable beings of floating flesh.
And yet here we are.
As pointed out by the Angry Video Game Nerd, the PlayStation 2 version of Rocky is prone to some extremely bizarre glitches. Some of them are pretty inoffensive, like making the audience look like giant pixels, turning the players invisible or causing the presenter to sound like a scratched record. But you know things are really getting out of control when boxers start sinking through the floor like ghosts for no reason ...
Ever wished the floor would swallow you -- arrrgh!
... only to suddenly disappear and be replaced by what looks like a pile of loose body parts, as if they'd become solid again while phasing through the floor and had been chopped to pieces.
"... I still win, right?"
And then comes the horror. Another inexplicable glitch makes Rocky's eyeballs pop right out of his face, but that's actually the least of his problems at the moment:
This is why you shouldn't gargle firecrackers.
He looks like he was born without a mouth and tried to make himself one with an ice pick. The worst part? All this time he's moving from side to side, back and forth, like a mindless zombie preparing to jump at you.
But hey, it could be worse. He could've been born without a jaw ... like Spider Rico here:
He had a big shock earlier in the day.
And what's he doing now? Is he -- oh dear lord they're gonna start falling through the floor again.
"Next stop: your bedroom."
At least Rocky and Spider are still vaguely recognizable as human, though: We can't say the same for Mr. T's character, Clubber Lang, who appears to have been transformed into a giant upside down leg with a screaming face lodged in between.
It's like a fleshy totem pole.
What's really happening here is that his arms and right leg are locked 90 degrees upward, so his leg has actually gone through his body and that's why the shoe appears to be coming out of his head, you see. Whoops, there goes the other leg!
Now that we know there's a perfectly rational explanation, he looks adorable.
Sherlock Holmes: Nemesis -- Creepy Watson
The PC game Sherlock Holmes: Nemesis (or Sherlock Holmes versus Arsene Lupin outside the U.S.) attempts to recreate the classic Holmes/Watson dynamic by letting you play as both characters. You control Holmes most of the time (from a first person perspective), but the programmers made sure that your loyal friend Watson is always close by so you can switch off to him if necessary.
Apparently they forgot one little detail, though: Creating the "walking" animations for Watson. As in, showing him actually move from one place to the other. The unintended result was that Watson ended up looking like the creepiest character in the history of video games.
Seriously, one second you see him standing to your left ...
"Oh look, it's my friend Watson. Hi there, buddy!"
But then you look to your right, and -- HOLY SHIT, how did he get there so fast?!
You try to get away from him -- you start walking in another direction without taking your eyes off him ...
"Just ... just stay there, I'll be right ... "
... but as soon as you turn around he's right in front you again.
Droopy Dog has got nothing on him.
He is a being who moves entirely via monster movie jump scare edits. You turn back around real quick to make sure there aren't two of them ... but nope, it's just him.
Hold on, where's ... ?
Where did he -- GAAAAAAAHHHH!!!!
"But I've been here all this time."
And so on. That video is actually from the demo, but the exact same thing happens in the actual game:
And in the previous one, Sherlock Holmes: The Awakened.
"Please do not do that again, Sherlock."
With the next game, Sherlock Holmes versus Jack the Ripper, they actually took the time to animate Watson walking as he follows Holmes, and the curse was finally over. We prefer to believe that he still has his powers, though, but chooses not to use them.
Fallout: New Vegas -- Floating Body Parts
Fallout: New Vegas is a glitchy fucking game. If you're lucky, this will manifest in the form of freeze screens that will crash your game without warning and make you lose hours of progress. If you're not so lucky, shit like this happens:
"Can you direct me to the Mirage?"
Floating heads. Floating heads everywhere. Sometimes they'll be moving across the landscape, minding their own business ...
Goodbye, head. May you always fly free in our nightmares.
... and other times they're just sitting there in pairs, completely unmovable regardless of what you throw at them. If you look at the floating heads from underneath you can tell that they're completely empty inside, like this is actually just someone's skin that floated off one day, so the logical question here is: What happened to all the flesh and bone that usually goes inside? Chances are we'll never know.
No, wait, here it is:
Well, this is a relief.
Apparently this is a glitch that can happen when you kill someone, save your game and then come back -- the game thinks the character should look like a mess of body parts, but sometimes it forgets to tell those parts to scatter all over the place and the character (or what's left of it) goes back to its default position. Sometimes they'll even move around and have conversations with you while looking like this.
"Isn't it obvious?"
It can happen to enemies too, even giant ones that were pretty fucking scary to begin with. It's like the game is constantly trying to one-up the atrocities that the creators came up with: "Oh, so you wanna blow people up? Here, let me put them back together while you're not looking -- isn't that much better?" Luckily, we live in an age where game companies can easily release patches that fix errors like these ... or try to.
They should have the eyes and part of the teeth behaving normally on the next release.
For more video game creepiness, check out 6 Baffling Old-School Video Game Commercials and 5 Creepy Ways Video Games Are Trying to Get You Addicted.
And be sure to check out Cracked's Page of Horror for hilariously horrifying articles like 6 Signs You're About to be Attacked by Zombies and Dealing With The Guy Who's Clearly Hiding a Zombie Bite.
And stop by LinkSTORM to see some puppies. Cute, harmless puppies.
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