A Selection of Video Game Urban Legends.

This week ends with the spookiest day of the year, Hallowe’en. So I thought what better way to kick off the week than to take a look at some video game themed urban legends…

Lavender Town Syndrome.


Let’s start with arguably one of the most famous video game urban legends- Lavender Town Syndrome. Anyone who has played Pokemon Blue, Red or Yellow will agree that the music for Lavender Town is quite unsettling and creepy, perfect for the town which hosts a Pokemon graveyard. So, it probably comes as no surprise that an equally creepy rumour exists about this location and its music. According to the rumour, the original Japanese version of Pokemon Red and Blue had a slightly different music track for Lavender Town. This version of the music apparently caused a number of children to lose their lives. Now I have to mention that there has never been any proof to this rumour and it appears to be one of those stories that remains thanks to the Internet. That being said, there is no denying that there is something unsettling about the Lavender Town music, so perhaps give this location a miss this Hallowe’en.

Fallout 3 Predicts The Future.

No, I’m not saying that the world is going to end in a nuclear fallout, although that’s not to say that won’t happen; I’m talking about the myth that Fallout 3 has predicted a number of events that actually happened. When the game was released in 2008, no one suspected that Galaxy New Radio host’s, Three Dog, ramblings could actually be linked to real world events… until it actually did. One of Three Dog’s lines was, “1-2-5-5-2-8-2-0-1-0, what you talkin’ bout? You will be missed.” Gary Coleman, an American actor, was famous for the line “What you talkin’ about?” and he passed away at 12:05 on May 28th 2010. Then there is the other Three Dog line, “9-4-5-4-2-0-2-0-1-0. Accident in Gulf, several dead. Oil spill apparently averted”, which according to the legend is similar to the BP oil spill. Naturally there were many other ‘predictions’ that never ended up happening, although according to Three Dog a Britney will win an Oscar on 27th February 2023, so time will tell if Three Dog can predict the future!

Image source: VG247.com.

The Madden Curse.

Moving away from the future, let’s talk about events that happened in the past, more specifically what happened to certain NFL players after featuring on the box art of the Madden games. According to the urban legend, any NFL player that features on a Madden game box art will experience some disaster or grave misfortune in their next NFL season. Like with all good urban myths, some real events add some weight to the curse, such as Daunte Culpepper who featured on the 2002 game cover and ended his next NFL season with a back injury. Like with other urban legends, it is highly unlikely there is a Madden ‘curse’ but there have been enough NFL players that have had misfortune befall on them that you can’t help but wonder…

Polybius.

Let’s talk about another infamous urban legend, but this time something that is thought to possibly exist in the real world. In the 1980s, arcades were extremely popular, so it is unsurprising that there is an urban legend about an arcade game called Polybius. The legend goes that the CIA wanted to gather data from gamers, as well as testing brainwashing technology. So, they installed Polybius games in several arcades in Portland, Oregon. Polybius has been described as a shooter with strobing visuals that would cause gamers to have headaches and other side effects. As quickly as the game appeared in arcades, it quickly and quietly disappeared. Today, there is very little information about Polybius, apart from forum posts with vague recollections of the game and one screenshot of the game title. So, the question is did Polybius ever exist or was it one of those Internet rumors that refuses to go away?

Image source: IMDB.

The Minecraft Ghost.

We’re finishing this post with a story about a ghost. For most people, Minecraft is a game that inspires creativity and enjoyment but for one player it inspired a little bit of fear. Back in 2010, on the Minecraft forums, a player posted a screenshot of a figure and asked if anyone else had experienced coming across a copy of the default character that did not have any eyes. The player explained that whenever he tried to get closer to the figure, it would disappear. After the player’s first post, they were apparently contacted by an individual that went by the name ‘Herobrine’, who simply messaged the player with the one word: ‘STOP’. Since this first player’s post, other players have said that the minecraft ghost has popped up in their games causing mischief but Notch, the creator of Minecraft, has previously said that Herobrine does not exist. So, who or what is Herobrine?

Image source: Eurogamer.

And those were a few video game urban legends. I hoped you enjoyed the ones I selected- there were quite a few to pick from! Let me know in the comments below which of this you think may be true or share some video game urban legends you know and I’ll talk to you soon!

9 thoughts on “A Selection of Video Game Urban Legends.

  1. These are awesome! I think my personal favourite was the ‘legend’ about being able to see some sort of ghost/demon thing in Tumbleweed in the original Red Dead Redemption. Allegedly at night near the church or mansion, some weird thing would appear. I investigated for hours, but never saw anything – still thought it was a cool myth though!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I remember the Madden Curse. Didn’t believe in it myself, but once I started paying attention, athletes that showed up on the cover of the games did end up injured with alarming consistency. Which is probably just because the Madden games pick the most prominent players to be on the cover, who are played often and in high pressure/contact situations so they’re naturally apt to getting injured, but still.

    I also feel the need to bring up Evil Otto, the villain of Berzerk and Frenzy. The only video game villain I know of that has legit killed people in real life. And that is spooky.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I completely agree, I don’t think its so much a curse but rather about statistics. The best players are put on the front covers but as they are often used in the games, they tend to risk getting injured more frequently. Still, its freaky enough to certainly appear like a curse.
      I’ve not heard of Evil Otto, I am going to have a take a look into it. Thanks for the suggestion!

      Like

      1. The early internet forums were full of them. People had doctored in game footage to show things that arent actually in the game. It led to this idea that Mario 64 has an AI that personally caters the game to each player.

        Like

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