Saturday, February 02, 2008

Is it my meds?

When Zyrtec (my allergy med) went OTC last month, there were three days or so between when my last script ran out and when it would be available in stores. So I was without it for three days, which kind of reset things. Zyrtec used to make me tired right after I took it, for like the first month or so, so I thought I'd start taking it at night because, you know, I have to sleep then anyway. But since then, I've been having some hell of crazy dreams. Is it the Zyrtec or is it just coincidence? Who knows. But last night I dreamt that I was playing an arcade game about skateboarding (with an actual skateboard on a roller in a Dance Dance Revolution-like set up) and then Radiohead came on and I went through the screen into the streets of the game. And Thom Yorke was there and he handed me a piece of asphalt, for which I was surprisingly grateful. He was walking backwards and singing, and I kept tripping as I was walking forward, and the asphalt would fly out of my hands. Thom would jog over and pick it up and hand it back to me. At some point, we'd gathered a large group of people around us, and then we went into a bakery for breakfast. There was a discussion about how too many sweets for breakfast made my brother sick. Then we sat at a large table and ate bagels.

I'm not even a big Radiohead fan; I pretty much only know what Thom Yorke looks like because Pete is a big fan. But the skateboarding game... I think that would be popular! It had a little display at the bottom of the screen highlighting which part of the board you should be leaning on to do the tricks. And when you pushed forward with your left foot (I'm a righty, so that's how I rolled), it was the board that moved on a roller, not a treadmill under your left foot, which added verisimilitude. I was only on the easiest level (and not very good at that), so I have no idea how tricks, jumps and allies would work. Maybe you'd have to jump and it would register the weight difference. I don't know. Anyway, video game manufacturers - get on it!


SonicLlama said...

Such a game already exists. It's existed for a while, actually, and it was in the Break back at the U of O.

I remember when it was first brought in, a big, ponderous looking thing by the pool tables. It was the type of object that seemed to have been made specifically to be a hubristic metaphor in that it either had to be the centerpiece of an arcade, or ignored entirely.

It's placement and size cried out for it to be adored, yet mostly it just sat. Occasionally, there was a single person wavering on its board, but they often had looks of frustration, and additional quarters were not forthcoming. Eventually, out of curiosity, Beau, Joseph, Eric, and myself gave it a try.

It seemed Tony Hawk-ish in design, and there was a character select screen at the beginning. I got on, balanced on the board, and began to roam about the electronic skateground. There were some rails and halfpipes. I spent a minute getting the feel of it and getting the unconventional controls down, and then did a few tricks.

And the game was over. My time had run out.

It was quite a short clock that the levels were on, and I was very surprised. There was only a screen grading my style and it pronounced me "Wacky." Presumably, that was bad, as my skater-guy avatar was clutching his head in despair in a way that made him look far more emo than skater.

I didn't play the game again, and neither, it appeared, did anyone else. The massive thing had failed to distract from DDR or become the phenomena that it's size and prominence promised. It was carted away, and my future quarters were invested in one-on-one fighting and shooting zombies.

But, perhaps it could be remade better. Perhaps a true skating game could be made.

Or, maybe we could just settle for actual skateboards.

Sydney said...

Aha! Well, that makes me feel so much better! I probably just heard you guys describe such a game and this is how long it took for my brain to get to that old piece of information and process it. Video game manufacturers: never mind!