Feature: Five Gaming Locales To Avoid This Holiday Season

It’s a fact, people get stuck in the strangest places this time of year when the weather takes a turn for worse, sometimes the locations are fictional, and that’s when the real problems begin.Silly, maybe. Odd, possibly. Regardless do you really just want to be another number in a vast statistic of missing gamers? Totally factual polls says no. So sit down, pop that eggnog in a glass, then throw it out, because it’s time for a lesson in cross dimensional safety.

Arklay Mountains (Resident Evil)
First off on risky seasonal roads is good ol’ ‘Merica. The Arklay Mountains region specifically. Now any wise shopper would probably do their wish list shopping weeks ahead of schedule, before Raccoon City redevelopment into a moon crater replica. But even so the outlying forest is infamous for its increase of sudden and inexplicable engine failures, so pack a tool box. However if you are tool-less your best bet would be to head to the closest Spencer brand estate, don’t worry the doors are never locked out here in the Rockies. Arklay inhabitants are renown for their lack of understanding for personal space, like your auntie after a sherry too far, so you’ll have to help yourself to a phone. If you can avoid the resident’s over excited pets and figure out their riddles you should soon find yourself in possession of a phone, holding your own excitement as this is just a playful joke on their part, the actual, working, telephone is usually on the opposite side of the estate. Whilst you wait for a mechanic see if you are able to join in on the local festivities and try some of their cuisine. If it is not quite to your taste do not fear, statistics show that it is mostly an acquired taste, which visitors almost always acquire, willing or otherwise. If you survive the evenings wild partying then an engineer should arrive onsite, don’t worry if when he finishes the job he then vanishes into the forest, never to be seen again, this is once again, a local custom.

Rapture (Bioshock)
Sometimes you go for a seasonal drive, just to see where the night takes you, then suddenly, BAM! You’re somewhere under the ocean due to your own negligence. At which point you either suffocate on sea water and sea slugs, or you, unlikely as it sounds, find your way into Rapture. A fairly nice city, which prides itself on artistic expression and scientific advances, golf club related deaths are unusually high as of late though, so teeing off is prohibited to most of the public. Regardless your short stay will always be your last, as you will never want to leave. Locals are relatively friendly with offers of physical harm being found on every street corner, but if you find that their advances are a little too rambunctious, just seek out one of the many security forces, easily identified by their scuba gear and penchant to take up orthodontics on unwilling pedestrians. Children are also encouraged to wander the streets aimlessly, as Rapture officials claim it helps the city grow and thrive. Be forewarned that aforementioned security forces also moonlight as part time nursery workers, also with a fascination on human biology, and any attempt to interact with their young wards will be met with a kindly drill to the face. Need more encouragement to stay, besides having no other choice? Rapture has a booming entertainment district, with civilians practically killing one another with glee! And when the games are over feel free to refresh oneself with conveniently placed vending machines, guaranteed to spice up any and all parts of your life. You can almost feel the electricity in the air!

The Mushroom Kingdom (Mario-Everything)
An unusual location for a holiday but an understandable one nevertheless. But if you are left without a form of transport the Toadstool Kingdom can quickly become an unappealing world. Firstly you should seek refuge, at all costs avoid brown brick castles, as they force you further into trouble. Whilst traveling make sure not to eat the local wildlife, as turtles and even mushrooms have gained sentient thoughts, leading to undesirable conflicts of opinion. The few things safe enough to eat in the wild are, hallucinogenic mushrooms, easily identified by their similarity to the sentient kind, of course they should be eaten sparingly, as they lead to the sensation of being much bigger than those around you. Another is a red flower, also with the appearance of being alive, much like the rest of the world around you at this point. But be wary, as said flower is a potent ingredient in most spicy foods, and is said to be as “hot as hell” when consumed alone. If you’ve made it this far then you must still have your taste buds and be reasonably sane, unfortunately you are likely to be faced with the Princess’s castle. Sign posts in the area are unlikely to be of any use, mostly suggesting the pressing of imaginary buttons to do various tricks, and the inhabitants are much worse, usually fading in and out of existence before posing strange riddles about worlds in the walls. If you can press onwards, avoiding being drawn towards the remarkably real paintings on the walls, you should encounter one of three people. A plumber incapable of stringing more than three words together, a frilly dressed princess hellbent on baking a cake, or a freakish mutant demon turtle. Suffice it to say none of them will be any help so just walk out the way you came, force yourself down a green sewage pipe, and arrive at your destination. This step is possible to achieve the moment of arrival in The Mushroom Kingdom, though unpleasant.

Pandora (Borderlands)
It’s an unfortunate truth that innocent drivers are being sucked into the vastness that is space, and usually end up on some god forsaken rock with no way to escape. No sane scientists were available for comment as to the reason behind this. Fortunately for you I’m here to tell you of a relatively quick and somewhat painless way to escape such environs as Pandora. Step one, fall to your knees and pray to any god that suits you for a way out of this hell. Step two, dry your eyes of those tears, or whatever excuse you have for those wet eyes. Step three, stick your head into the closest hole in the ground so you can find food. Step three 1/2, an angry Skag will devour your head and thus bring an end to what is pretty much an awful way to live. Step four, repeat step three until whatever god you prayed to answers your prayer in the form of a Skag. If you do not prefer this way to inevitability, then search for a human settlement on what is pretty much a barren and kill-filled planet. If this is your second time here on Pandora then you will find that your trip will be completely unhindered by any semblance of a plot, you’ll find more guns in animals than any unexpected twists, which is fine, in a sense. Upon finding a human settlement you will soon realize that you have stumbled upon a bandit camp, if anything, which is just another reason as to why you should’ve kept sticking your head into Skag nests. If you’re stubborn enough to survive you might find one of the sexiest damned robots to ever exist, with his cubic style of casing and one wheel transportation method, Claptrap is enough to make living on Pandora bearable. Besides, you’re not going anywhere anytime soon, escape is hopeless, if not impossible. Sorry, I should’ve mentioned that sooner. On the bright side Claptrap is open to non-monogamous relationships.

The Capital Wasteland (Fallout 3)
The honest truth is that ‘murica has a lot of nuclear wessels/missiles. Hell, so does the rest of the world. So the inevitability of the world becoming scored by nuclear fallout is pretty much apparent, to a pessimist at least. But what would you do if all you had to defend yourself from ghouls and mutants…and other angry people, was just a sprig of mistletoe. The odds aren’t stacked in your favor. Unless you have a vacuum cleaner, a conductor, a leaf blower and finally a fire hose nozzle, not to mention the skills to combine all four components, which is pretty much everyone to survive such devastation, as it is the basic law of the universe that in a nuclear apocalypse everyone gains the spirit of MacGyver. Chances are though that you didn’t read my advice, just passing it off as pointless, and are now being mauled by a mutant bear, instead of fighting it off with a homemade mistletoe launcher. Regardless, most survivors will instinctively band together and build societies in fortified locations. Don’t bother searching around unexploded atomic bombs and rusted out military ships though, because no one is that stupid. If you do that you might as well search a cave for a lost civilization of tribe children, hah, like that would happen. Another thing to note in the aftermath is that guns and ammunition will be abundant, you will almost literally have bullets flying out your nose, not to mention that most normal human beings will be able to carry at least ten different rifles, God bless radiation induced mutations. Finally all currency will be bottle caps from thereon out, don’t question it, just stock up on Co…Nuka-Cola bottles. One last tiny detail, if you are in the, oh I don’t know…Nevada area during a nuclear fallout situation just absorb as much radiation as possible and hope it kills you. So…many…factions…

Well that’s it, my debt to society is paid tenfold. I’ve probably saved millions of lives and occupied five minutes of your time, non-refundable, of course. Now all we need to do is wait for the world to end like it was prophesied to do, so you can put all I’ve told you into action…wait…what do you mean that it was a load of bull?

Author: Harry Box

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