Stories

R.P.G.

Wizards and Warriors is the hottest new Role-Playing Game out there and I just scored a copy with a username and password.

User Name: lily666

Password: xxx

The password is ‘xxx’? What happened to 20-letter access codes? This protection is useless; not my problem, though. I watch the little rotating sword turn a few times while the game loads.

Lily666 has four character slots, all in use. Screw that. I delete the bottom one and hit ‘Create New’. About three dozen choices later my character, Burak Blackblade, is ready. He’s a rough-edged, muscular, unshaven barbarian type with a great honkin’ two-handed sword. I hit the ‘start’ button and wait. Loading…

The starting flash is blinding and deafening, jarring me to the bone and actually knocking me out of my chair. Whoa, I can’t tell whether this is potentially dangerous or just awesome!

The white spots slowly fade from my vision and my eyes clear. W-T-F?!? My bedroom is gone; I’m lying on the ground; squishy mud is oozing into my butt-crack and the whole place smells of manure. A blue sky overhead plays host to fluffy white clouds and circling carrion birds. Standing over me is Burak Blackblade.

He lifts his loincloth and the family jewels I’d carefully selected from the menu splash me with warm and pungent yellow liquid. His harsh laugh echoes in my ears. He reaches down and hoists a fully-grown pig onto his shoulder.

“Thanks for the bacon, kid. Grow some muscles before you come at me again.”

I try to stand up but nothing happens. As he fades in the distance something changes and I can finally move.

A woman with a brown ponytail and a matching peasant dress walks into view and offers me a hand up.

“Come on, kid. Welcome to Wizards and Warriors. Your player rank is dumbshit.”

“What?”

“You took the bait, pirate. We leaked some special copies of the game to Megatorrent and hid fake passwords where they could be found. Now you’re playtesting the Immersive version of the game.”

“Immersive version?”

“Yeah, it’s the next step after RPG’s. Your body’s been disintegrated for as long as you’re here, so you’re in-game for the duration. All you have to do to get back to reality is beat your nemesis… Burak Blackblade? Didn’t want anything too easy to say, did you?”

“How are you doing this?”

“Trade secret. Anyway, your backpack is right there, and your sword is in the mud. You’ll have to fish around a bit to find it. You’re Level 1, Burak’s level 50 Elite. Shouldn’t take more than a hundred hours to play up to his level, unless you get killed.”

“What happens if I get killed?”

“You reset to Level 1, your treasure vanishes, and you get to taste more of Burak’s urine. By the way, is your real self male or female?”

“Male. Why?”

“You should have picked a male user ID.”

She slaps me on the ass – forcefully – and vanishes with a laugh.