Thursday, March 29, 2012

The Unintended Horror of Beautiful Katamari

In this new series of articles, Humor Tumor takes a look at a variety of games he's played that terrified him. The only thing is...these games are far from scary. Today's boogeyman: Beautiful Katamari.

So Resident Evil: Operation Raccoon City came and went (review pending). And not surprisingly it was about as scary as a penguin. A cute penguin. With an umbrella. And a top hat.

But this got me to thinking; are there games out there that aren't intended to scare people, but scared me? A game that by any means would be considered the furthest thing from horror. Something that would make you go "awww, how cute" or laugh your head off. An innocuous game meant purely to be cute, harmless fun. And the first thing that popped into my head was Katamari. Not any Katamari would do, but specifically Beautiful Katamari.

And the reason?

Black. Fucking. Holes.

For a long time I've harbored a certain fear for gravitational singularities. Light can't escape it, you can't see them in the deep black of space. And certain other things, like that they could move around space. Like some kind of Boogeyman; disguised as some kind of interstellar Kirby Vacuum, that was also invisible.

And this was all before I read about Event Horizons, which chill me to the bone just reading about them.

In all terrifies me.
So when it came time to plug up the black hole the King of the Cosmos creates in Beautiful Katamari,
naturally I was kind of  worried. It wasn't until I actually saw the visage of the thing looming up that I freaked and never approached it. I failed the level because of my refusal to approach something I associate with oblivion.

In fact, I never beat Beautiful Katamari. I just replayed earlier levels, enjoying myself away from the hell hole. The image actually stopped me from ever revisiting that stage. It seems silly to think about it now, I'm not sure that if I picked up Beautiful Katamari I would be able to beat it. Looking at the screenshots, the black hole is kind of a silly looking thing, coupled with the insanely happy music. And given the games irreverent charm and ability to make anyone smile, why did it bother me so much?

Oh wait, it might be this:

I'll let that soak in a little bit, because it freaks me the hell out.

Humor Tumor is currently pondering telling the story about how a witch in a Pony game for the Genesis creeped the living hell out of him.

Well, now that that's out of the bag, he might as well.

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