There Are Two Types of People

(@MCENT) Melbourne Central AR Chat Log (Public Channel) 14:52 -15:20 (AEST) 03.10.69.

@Billy_Brixton591 : Dark Inside from 2032. That was the first time I remember really being bothered by my gaming,

@TheAceofSpace2005 : Dark lnside!! :DD

@Billy_Brixton591 : It was the first of the actual murder simulators, and one of the earliest games available exclusively on the v-net. That was a bigger deal back then. Goggles were just peripherals for consoles and computers, and a VR-only internet was seen as super niche. We had no idea how big it would become.

@TheAceofSpace2005 : I bought an access key for that when I was 10 years old. It basically became my childhood. My parents would have killed me if they knew, haha. :P

@Billy_Brixton591 : Dark lnside pitted you against your friends to see who would survive the longest as a serial killer in a realistic setting. You had to elude the cops, pick the right sorts of targets, clean up your crime scenes, and hide all the bodies.

@TheAceofSpace2005 : Clean-up was the woooorst. :( I always rigged the ovens so I didn’t have to deal with all the mess.

@Billy_Brixton591 : I played it for a bit because my friends were playing at the time. We couldn’t really play together, but we’d read the news about each-other’s exploits in its newspapers and magazines. One of my friends figured out you’d even get on television if you kept a murder streak for long enough. The competition kept us playing for a while.

@TheAceofSpace2005 : Not that arson made it any harder for the cops to track me down :P

@Billy_Brixton591 : But eventually it began to get to me. The game was fucking sick. It wasn’t anything like Hitman, for example. The lack of context outside of the killings made it feel like something else.

@TheAceofSpace2005 : lol

@Billy_Brixton591 : You’d walk down empty streets in first person, always after dark. No music, just the ambient sounds of the city. Your footsteps would echo on the pavement, and the wind…you could almost feel it blowing on your face.

@TheAceofSpace2005 : If you play the new one with a brain controller chip, you actually can.

@Billy_Brixton591 : When you found someone, you had to follow them: stay hidden while you tracked them to their home. All of them had different personalities, different tags for courage or bravado. Some would call you out, tell you that they knew that you were there and try to get you out to fight them. Others would just look over their shoulder. You could look at them and tell they were afraid. Either way your goal would be the same. Follow them. Try to stay unseen.

@TheAceofSpace2005 : The multiplayer mode in number 3 was even better. You could choose between a killer or a victim and the game would randomly assign an NPC or a player as your opposite. You never knew which one you would be facing, which was tricky. Other players had a lot of subtle ways to fuck you up.

@Billy_Brixton591 : When I was a kid playing retro games like Grand Theft Auto: Carcer or Half Life 3, they’d always give you reasons for the violence.

@TheAceofSpace2005 : Grand Theft Auto always sucked.

@Billy_Brixton591 : You could shoot your team, or the people on the street, but the game wouldn’t reward you for it. It was understood as fantasy, even in the context of the world. And you always had a reason for the people that you killed. They were trying to fight you, trying to arrest you, trying to take over the world…

@TheAceofSpace2005 : It never even got a propet dismemberment engine :(

@Billy_Brixton591 : In Dark Inside, killing was the focus of the game. You won points for ending the lives of random people. And the better you did, the higher you scored.

@TheAceofSpace2005 : You could get really elaborate kills as well. I made a molotov and threw it at a dude so that he’d run towards his shower, while hiding in the roof above it with a toaster attached to an extension cord. I dropped the toaster, knocked him out, and saw him burn and fry to death at once. It was funny, but a little gross. I got a load of points for that one.

@Billy_Brixton591 : One time I was on a petfect run, following this woman back into her house. I’d smashed a car windscreen before I saw her so I had a pretty decent murder weapon, and she hadn’t seen me yet. Then I see she lives in an apartment.

@TheAceofSpace2005 : Fuck

@Billy_Brixton591 : Apartments could be tricky thanks to intercoms. You couldn’t go in with the victim or they’d see you. Trying the buzzer was risky too. So I was casing the place, trying to find a way in, then lucky me, someone ordered pizza. The delivery guy goes to the door, presses the button for the intercom, and the victim answers. She buzzes him up.

@TheAceofSpace2005 : Lucky break!

@Billy_Brixton591 : So I go over to the delivery guy and stab him in the neck. He’s down before he even figures out what’s happening. I hide him in the stairwell and change into his clothes.

@TheAceofSpace2005 : But you lost your murder weapon?

@Billy_Brixton591 : Didn’t think I’d need it. I knew the victim was a friendly type so I figure I can get in there with a minimum of fuss. Ask to use her bathroom or something, Then it was just a matter of finding a way to kill her quietly.

@TheAceofSpace2005 : Yeah, friendly NPCS were really stupid in the first one. I’m glad they made them tougher in the second.

@Billy_Brixton591 : So I climb the stairs up and she greets me. I hand her the pizza and she hands me the money. And I start to ask her if she’ll let me in.

@TheAceofSpace2005 : Haha, yeah?

@Billy_Brixton591 : And then I realize what I’’m doing. What I’m really fucking doing. See, I’ve gotten pretty good at this: this process of stalking, hunting, profiling my victims. Pretty much the skills I’d need to be an RL murderer.

@TheAceofSpace2005 : Seems like a long bow to draw.

@Billy_Brixton591 : And I look at her smiling, 3D-rendered face and I think of all the people like her in the world

@TheAceofSpace2005 : I’’m not sure how happy anyone would be with being told that they were like an NPC…

@Billy_Brixton591 : And then I just couldnt go through with it. I walked down the stairs, left the building, then stood outside and watched the stars.

@TheAceofSpace2005 : That’s lame.

@Billy_Brixton591 : I knew I wasn’t really hurting anyone. It wasn’t like the VR made that any different.

@TheAceofSpace2005 : It’s almost unbelievable that the tech was controversial in the 20!

@Billy_Brixton591 : But the simulation was so perfect, I felt like I was doing something wrong.

@TheAceofSpace2005 : It wasn’t perfect. You couldn’t even kill the dogs.

@Billy_Brixton591 : Wtf? Why would you try to kill the dogs?

@TheAceofSpace2005 : Because it’s just a game?

@Billy_Brixton591 : Is it really though?

@TheAceofSpace2005 : Yeah, of course.

@Billy_Brixton591 : Even if we feel as though we’re doing something wrong?

@TheAceofSpace2005 : I didn’t feel like I was doing something wrong.

@Billy_Brixton591 : Either way, I never played again.

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