The following games seemed to want to embrace being weird. Strange plots, crazy gameplay, and even a few head scratching moments ensure that these games can never be described as normal. They are my picks for just plain weird video games.
1. Katamari Series
It’s very true that Katamari is one of the most popular game franchises out there. It’s fun, cute, and very addictive. However when you stop and think about it, it’s more than a little weird. Every game begins with the King of All Cosmos destroying the solar system in some fashion. He got drunk, angry, a little over enthusiastic playing sports, you know the standard stuff. He then demands The Prince to roll a ball around, sucking up things in it’s path to make it grow to replace the things the King destroyed. Some how this crazy system equals one of the most fun games ever, but you can’t help but shake your head at the craziness of this game. Add in the bright colors and crazy soundtrack, and everything adds up to just plain silly.
This really isn’t a game at all. Instead the player simply walks around any number of strange environments, each time you bump into an object or wall you are transported to a different environment. These “dreams” happen for ten minuets and are added to the flashbacks. The only real danger in the dreams are a man in a gray trench coat. If the player gets too close the screen will flash and he will disappear. The dreams this happens in aren’t able to be recalled later. What is really amazing about this game is that even though there are a limited number of environments they never really look the same. The game was based on a dream journal kept by a member of Asmik Ace Entertainment and it’s no stretch to say his dreams were messed up. LSD Dream Emulator is fascinating but also very disturbing.
Chulip is described as an action/simulation game. To be honest it’s a kissing game. The whole point of the game is to figure out who to kiss and when. There is a bit of a challenge because you can’t just kiss any random NPC at any time. Sometimes you have to do favors for them, and certain NPCs only come out at certain times a day according to the in-game clock. Ultimately though, it’s a kissing game. It’s also worth noting that this game is all about trying to impress a girl, and the ability to kiss is what helps the player rise to the top of corporations and meeting aliens. That’s right because the only thing more convoluted than the fact that this is a kissing game is the actual plot in which this game takes place. If you can embrace the strange though, it’s a decent game.
4. Mr. Mosquito
You play as a mosquito that lives in a house with a family. Each day/stage you have to collect a certain amount of blood to continue. There are only certain parts of the body that the player can suck at various times through out the game. You also have to be careful to not suck blood too fast or too slow. To top it off there is no shortage of creepy, since the mosquito often has to go after women when they are in suggestive positions. It’s really hard to find the words to describe this game.
Much like Dream Emulator this isn’t much of a game either. Seaman is more of a Virtual Pet. You are responsible for the everyday care of a creature. You have to learn about it, and develop it in many different stages. Sounds pretty normal right? It is until you realize that the creature starts as a fish with a man’s face and eventually grows into a frog with a man’s face. There’s really nothing normal about the creature. Sprinkle on Leonard Nimoy guiding you through the world of caring for these animals and it’s safe to classify this game as STRANGE.
Catherine is a horror/puzzle game. In it Vincent, the main character, is feeling pressured to get married. Their little community is also suffering from a number of strange occurrences. Vincent begins to have nightmares, which is where the actual gameplay comes in. He also meets a woman and begins to cheat on his girlfriend with her, but it only seems to make the nightmares more frequent. The strange rumors around town kind of seem to be a red herring though, as the game is really all about Vincent’s inability to commit. That’s a lot to go through for a game to have a message about commitment. So strange gameplay with strange plot just leaves this as being a weird experience. An enjoyable one none the less though.
7. Chex Quest
This game in and of itself is not weird. Chex cereal created this non-violent game that was included with their product. It’s clear product buy-in because you are Chex Man protecting the cereal from aliens that want to eat it. What makes this game strange is the fact that it’s was basically Doom for children. They used the same engine, modeled multiple levels after Doom levels. Had the same HUD system and controls. They borrowed everything from Doom except the violence and fear (which is pretty important to Doom). I give them credit for wanting to give young kids something to play when computer games were really taking off, however as an adult seeing that game after Doom it’s a bit shocking. It’s hard not to put a child’s game that tried to emulate one of the least kid friendly games ever created on a list of strange games.