My wife, Christy, is horrible at videogames. I mean, fucking horrible. I bought her a DS for Christmas this year, and guess what two games she currently owns for it? Animal Crossing and Nintendogs. I shit you not.
So, in thinking about re-configuring this column a wee bit, what’s the funniest thing I could think of? Easy: make her play games I know she’ll hate. I mean, looking up from where I’m writing this, I can see so many opportunities: Silent Hill 2, The Suffering, Doom 3, Fatal Frame—but no. I’m going for the big guns. Resident Evil 4. As regular readers know, there’s exactly two things on this planet that Christy hates more than all others: zombies, and games about zombies. So, I gave her a GameCube controller, hit play/record on my tape-recorder, and let the magic begin. What follows is the actual transcript of what happened.
Resident Evil 4 for the Nintendo GameCube
I put in the cute little GameCube disc and boot up the game.
Christy: “Explicit gore? There’s an actual warning before the game?”
Travis: “Don’t worry about it, honey.”
C: “This is the ‘what’re you buying?’ game, isn’t it? With the trader guy?”
T: “No. Hit start. Note: This game contains Pokémon and Animal Crossing characters. And no zombies what-so-ever.”
C: “Then, why do I have a gun?” (This causes us both to bust up laughing.)
T: “To shoot the Pokémon. All right, right trigger is your aim. Got a laser sight on it. Use your A button to fire. Shoot that crow up there.”
C: “What does the other button—”
T: “Yeah, the left trigger is your knife. Hold it down and hit A—(She immediately brings up the knife and starts thrashing wildly in the air.)
C: “Stab! Stab stab! Stab stab!”
T: “That’s right, honey. To stab things.”
C: “Like the Pokémon?”
T: “Yep. Just like the Pokémon. You’d be like, ‘I don’t chose you, Pikachu. I stab you.'”
C: “Well, that was really fun. I’m done now.”
T: “Ha-ha. See that dilapidated farmhouse up there? Go into it.”
T: “No? You have to.”
She tentatively approaches the farmhouse and enters, encountering her first zombie. I know, they’re not technically zombies in this game, but it’s easier. Rounding the corner, there’s a zombie by the fireplace. She fires blindly and completely depletes her ammo immediately. Three more zombies gather outside.
C: “Fuck this. (Note: my wife curses as bad as I do) I’m getting the hell outta here.” (She picks up some ammo and jumps out the window.)
A vastly confusing fire-fight commences.
T: “Three zombies! Fire! Run! B button—B button! Run! The red button! Honey, you’ve got a laser sight for Christ sake.”
C: “Those things come back to life, you know.”
T: “Do you have any idea how much ammo you just wasted?”
C: “Like I care.”
T: “L button! Knife, knife, knife! Okay, they’re gone. Pick up the shit they left behind. Now use your green herb.”
T: “Yeah, I know. I said “green herb“. They’re in all the Resident Evils. Now you’re totally out of ammo because you wasted about 1,600 rounds on the three zombies you just faced.”
C (laughing): “It was worth it.”
T: “I told you not to waste your ammo.”
C: “I panicked! They were coming at me.”
She moves on, past a few shacks.
T: “Hold R and hit B to reload. Okay, you’ve got ten shots only. Do not waste them going ‘Ahhhhh!’ and shooting blindly.”
C: “It’s what I do. Where’s that whining coming from?”
T: “There’s a dog in a bear trap up here. You can choose to let him go or not.”
C (She immediately lets him go): “Can I give him some green herb?”
T (laughing): “No, but I bet he’d like some right now.”
She moves on some more.
T: “Not to ruin it, but there’s a zombie in that shack up ahead.”
C: “What?” (She approaches the shack, but will not go inside.)
T: “Wait—maybe he’s to the right.”
T: “No, he’s in the shack. I think. Or, Jesus Christ, IS HE TO THE RIGHT?”
C: “WHAT? Where is he?! Why are you fucking with me?”
T: “Huh. Actually, I don’t know where he is at this point.”
She enters the shack and turns, and there is a woman with a pitchfork in her face impaled on the wall. She screams.
C: “That poor lady!”
I have no comment.
A little bit later, we are just outside the village. A cop from the beginning is being burned alive and infected villagers are wandering around everywhere. She absolutely refuses to enter this area. It takes a bit of prodding to get her to go in through behind the main house and approach the two dozen or so villagers cautiously. She looks through the binoculars and sees the carnage.
T: “Go forward a little bit and—”
T: “Honey, trust me, go forward—”
C: “No. Tell me the whole plan.”
T: “You’re going to go around the back and take them out one by one.”
She goes left, behind the farmhouse and sees a woman with a pitchfork quite a ways out. She has not been noticed yet.
T: “Okay, go forward. See that woman way out there? Go forward.” (Keep in mind, she’s behind a farmhouse, the house is on her right and she’s facing an enemy that’s directly ahead of her. She goes past the house, and at this point turns to her right, where the bonfire would be, and there is an enemy RIGHT there, in her face, with a knife. He stabs her dead immediately, but not before she screams so loud I had to pull my ear away from the recorder.)
C: “Okay, so I go forward and—AAAAAIIIIIIEEEEEEEEE!!!! Okay, Jesus Christ, that’s it. I’m done.”
The controller goes down; she is, as she said, done.
Christy’s Alternative Pick of the Month:
“If you love Resident Evil 4, you have to check out Animal Crossing! Instead of killing zombies, you run errands for your fuzzy wuzzy animal neighbors! You can’t kill them, but you can push them and they get an adorable rainy cloud around their heads that means they’re real mad at you and refuse to speak to you any more! If anything else, it’s on the GameCube and I know you have one of those if you’ve got Resident Evil 4 (Note: She doesn’t know about ports and that it’s on the PS2 as well). Happy fruit picking!”
Well, that’s it for this month kiddies! We’ll see how this column evolves, but for now, I’ve got plenty more where this came from. One of these days, I’ll flip the tables and play one of her shitty games, but for now we remain….