Real Neat Blogger award: a personal adventure

Last month, Bandicoot Warrior nominated Later Levels for a Real Neat Blogger award. Head over to his site so you can stay up-to-date on his progress towards convincing me to finally play Fallout! He himself was nominated in December by Hailey from A Dame’s Gotta Game, and she came up with some great video-game-related questions which put us in the centre of the adventure as the main character.

Bandicoot Warrior opted to stick with Hailey’s questions so here’s how our story begins: “You awake in a strange house, surrounded by things that seem familiar, yet new in their own way. Your head hurts and you can’t remember who you are or anything about your past, but the memories soon begin to flood back and you begin to be able to piece together qualities about yourself and your life by looking at the objects around you.” It looks as though we have a big adventure ahead so let’s find out where this journey takes us…

Question one:

After getting out of the bed you just woke up in, you begin looking around the room and notice a framed family portrait on the mantle. You glance in a mirror on the wall and back at the family portrait. The person in the middle of the photograph is clearly you, but the people on either side of you look familiar, but you can’t remember much about them and who they are. You assume that they must be your parents and you suddenly remember them from a game. Who are your gaming character parents?

Night in the Woods, video game, kitchen, cats, conversation, Kandy, Mom, Mae

Dad would be the Hero from Fable, because he’s a master of Strength, Skill and Will; plus everyone would want to be your friend after seeing him turn up at the school gates in his armour and wielding Avo’s Tear. And mum would be Candy Borowski from Night in the Woods, because the random stuff she comes out with reminds me of the stuff that my real-life mum says. I might need to rethink this combination however, considering the Hero has a dog and Candy herself is clearly a cat-person… hmm.

Question two:

After figuring out and remembering a bit about who your parents are, you hear a loud growl from your stomach. You are starving! After a quick trip to the kitchen, you open the fridge and your eyes widen at the assortment of foods on the shelves before you! Everything looks delicious, but you notice your favourite video game food and it just looks too tempting not to eat first! Which video game food do you choose to eat first and what makes it such a delicious treat?

The Legend of Zelda, Breath of the Wild, video game, Link, fire, cooking pot, recipe, hut, trees

This question is similar to one posed as part of 2017’s Creative Christmas collaboration. For day eight we had to come up with a menu made entirely from video game food and, although there were a number of tasty options, the one I’d be most likely to eat in real-life would be the Hearty Salmon Meunière from The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. If I was still peckish afterwards I’m sure I could make some room for a slice or two of Butterscotch-Cinnamon Pie courtesy of Undertale, because it sounds as though it would be amazing.

Question three:

Now that your stomach is satisfied, you realise that you are so thirsty! You head back to the fridge and peer inside once again. You spot your favourite video game drink on the shelf, ice cold and looking delicious! You grab one, pop it open, and take a big drink. Which video game drink did you choose to satisfy your thirst?

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, video game, sweetroll, cake, lizard, plate

Following on from the menu above, I also included a couple of beverages within my Creative Christmas post but neither are what I’d want to drink. Both grog or root beer are horrid so instead, I’d go for something different but still alcoholic: Honningbrew Mead from The Elder Scrolls series. I had the opportunity to try mead for the first time as a Christmas market a few years ago and really enjoyed it; plus the alcohol in it would provide some much-needed Dutch courage for the rest of this adventure.

Question four:

Now that your thirst has been quenched, you decide to look around the house a bit more and see what you can remember about yourself and the world around you. As you step into the hallway, you hear a loud crash and many other terrifying noises. Fearing for your safety, you step into the nearest room and close the door quietly. As you turn and place your back against the closed door, you glance up and see a terrifying creature standing before you. You immediately recognise the monster from a video game and begin trying to remember it’s weaknesses and vulnerabilities to help you survive! Which creature and from which game stands before you?

The Vanishing of Ethan Carter, video game, zombie, face

Which creature appears in so many video games, even those where you’re least expecting them? Zombies. Even quieter non-action titles such as The Vanishing of Ethan Carter have their fair share of the shuffling corpses. Fear not though because I’ve done an awful lot of research on the zombie apocalypse and evidence shows that gamers are well-equipped to survive the undead horde. All we need to do is stay out of the cities, aim for the head and blame the pharmaceutical conglomerates for all of this mess.

Question five:

The creature growls and positions itself to attack! You glance to your right and see a formidable weapon. You recognise it immediately from a game and quickly grab it before attacking the monster and ultimately winning the battle. Which weapon did you see and what makes it your main choice?

The Secret of Monkey Island, video game, ghost, pirates, LeChuck, Guybrush Threepwood, root beer, grog machine, Stan's Previously Owned Vessels, boatyard

Root beer has long been known among voodoo practitioners to be a powerful weapon; and with that well-stocked fridge mentioned in question three above, there’s bound to be crates of the stuff in this place. LeChuck exploded into a firework display when sprayed with the stuff at the end of The Secret of Monkey Island – but perhaps that was less to do with this beverage’s anti-zombie properties, and more to do with the fact that it tastes simply disgusting. Who knows?

Question six:

After cleaning yourself up from the battle with the creature, you decide that it’s time to get out of this house and to find someplace safer! You find the door to the garage and upon opening the door, you find a variety of vehicles, mounts, and transports, all of which are vaguely familiar. You only have time to choose one, so choose wisely! Which video game method of transport do you choose and what makes it the most reliable for ensuring a safe getaway?

The Last Guardian, video game, Trico, animal, beast, phoenix, griffin, boy

This one is easy: it would have to be Trico from The Last Guardian. He can provide transport over long or high distances as well as support; he’s loyal and strong; and all that fur would be great for keeping both of us warm if we have to venture into colder climates on this adventure. When you’re trapped on the other side of a canyon, he’ll mewl at you to give you the confidence to make the jump and catch you just before you plummet. Now that’s a relationship built on trust.

Question seven:

As you speed away from the house on your chosen method of transport, you notice the scenery around you is also familiar and you spot a familiar person. You are unsure if this person is a friend or a foe, but currently, you can’t worry about that. You need help! Which video game character do you see first and what makes them a friend or a foe on your journey to the unknown?

Horizon Zero Dawn, video game, woman, warrior, Aloy, mountains, sky, photo mode, clouds

Aloy has plenty of qualities to make her an amazing friend and she’s someone you can’t help but admire. She laughs at anyone who doubts her skill; tells men her ‘eyes are up here’; questions the rights of the matriarchs to take power; and pulls apart any stupid traditions that don’t make sense. Plus she always looks perfect regardless of the situation so maybe she could give me some tips and do my hair. She loves a bit of technology too so maybe she’d be up for some co-op gaming on the sofa after battle.

That’s it: we’ve completed our adventure and arrived safely in a new world! Thank you to Bandicoot Warrior for the nomination, and to Hailey from A Dame’s Gotta Game for a set of awesome questions. How would your own adventure pan out?

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