Some say the Nintendo 64 is one of the best systems ever made by Nintendo. I would agree with those people. That is, as long as they're not referring to a Nintendo 64 I stumbled across one day.
While on a vacation, I was in a small township one day that I had never visited before. I saw a green building called "Antique Shop." Generic, right? I noticed a GameCube and a copy of Ikargua in the window, so I decided to visit the shop. I asked the shopkeeper what video games he sold, and he claimed to sell Super NES and GameCube titles in the back. I don't own a Super NES, and looking through the first GameCube titles, all I saw were some sports titles and that Aqua man game everyone hates. What's the GameCube doing with antiques anyway?! Seems disrespectful...
I was about ready to give up on this store when I saw what looked like the box to a game console. I reached for it, and it was a Nintendo 64 box. Yet, something was different. Somebody had slapped a Post-It note on the box that said, "TERROR." It was put over the nintendo so that the name was now, "Nintendo 64." The box felt suprisingly light, almost as if the box was empty.
I decided that I would buy the box so I could carry my Nintendo 64 in a box instead of a Barnes & Noble tote bag. When I gave the box to the clerk, all he did was frown and say it was $2. Apparently, the same person who thinks the GameCube is a thing of the past also likes to charge for an empty box. That is, I thought it was empty.
When I brought it to the hotel room, I got my regular Nintendo 64 and opened the box. I was shocked to find an actual Nintendo 64 console, controller, cable setup, and a copy of Super Mario 64 in the box! Why it felt so light when carrying it home, I have no idea. I compared the two Nintendo 64s, which both looked the same. Then I saw the back of the consoles, where the Nintendo Customer Service number is. While I can't remember the real number of the hotline, I remember the Nintendo 64's number was a different phone number: 1-100-116-3527.
I decided to play the copy of SM64 that came with "The Fun Machine." I noticed there was a file in File A that showed 113 Stars. I opened a new file in File B. Everything was how it should be until I decided to open the castle door. It was locked. I kept running towards the door, but nothing happened. After two and a half minutes, it finally opened. The worst was yet to come.
When I entered the building, the coins then turned into sticks of some sort. I decided to relive my childhood by going to the castle courtyard to look at the "L is Real 2401" statue. There were Boos already at the statue, which was odd as I didn't have a Boo lead me to the courtyard and I had zilch number of stars on me. I decided to talk to the first Toad in the castle (because Toads are awesome) and the only thing he said was this: "I saw Bowser, all skinny-like in the distance. His eyes locked with another Toad's eyes, and the beast opened his mouth. He ran over and crushed the doomed little fungus with his bare hands. You can't escape the grip now, darb!"
Darb? Who's Darb? Either way, I was figuring this game was hacked, but sadly, I kept playing. I jumped through the Bob-omb Battlefield picture, selected the King Bob-omb mission, and didn't hear any Mario quote. The sky in the level was gray, as if if were about to rain. The portals didn't work. The Chain Chomp had angry eyebrows. The rolling wrecking balls moved faster than before. But I kept climbing the summit. Upon reaching the top...I found no boss. No, there wasn't any log cabin with Luigi's corpse in it. There was absolutely nothing at the top but Mario. I guessed it was a hack or a glitch, so I wanted to leave the level, but when I paused, the only option was "Continue." So I continued to slightly fall off one of the ledges at the top as to not fall off the mountain completely, but still take 1/4 damage. But there was no damage done. I finally decided to do the triple jump off the mountain so I might jump to a death. Half the way down, tragedy struck. Literally. Lightning struck Mario, who splattered on the ground in electrified red. It stayed focused on his remains for one minute. I turned of the console, fearing a screamer (hate those videos).
When I turned the console back on, I found that my save file now had 66 Stars. What the heck?! I clicked it to find myself in the same normal setting as before, but the waterfall water flow was reversed. I entered the castle, wanting to try my skills at flying. I looked up to...the picture of the cheerleader from Resident Evil 2. I never played the game, but I heard about this strange easter egg before. When I entered the Flying stage, I entered with NO FLYING CAP ON. So all I did upon arrival was fall. I thought that's the end of that, but then I fell from the sky to the bottom of the level, then came from the sky and fell to the bottom, etc. So I was stuck in this falling paradox for I think one minute and 53 seconds, until the screen faded to black. The creepiest thing yet then popped up: the Game Over screen from Super Mario Bros. How can that happen in this game? After five seconds of a black screen, my fear of screamers kicked in and I turned the Nintendo 64 off.
Somebody hacked into the cartridge to make something messed up, so I instead played my other Super Mario 64 cartridge (the non-hacked one I got for Christmas and didn't just buy recently).When it opened, File D, a file that was left over by the previous cartridge owner, one I never messed with, had now 113 Stars instead of 103. My two top files were intact, one with 33 Stars and another with 9 Stars. I played File A..and the beginning cutscene popped up. It had no sound, Peach's eyes looked purple-ish, and the letter had only one word on it: NO. Then, I saw that stupid scene of Mario getting struck by lightning again. This time, I turned the system off before I reached the ground, and I ripped the cartridge out. I decided to then hook up my real Nintendo 64 to play my first non-hacked cartridge. Everyone was just the way it should be on the Nintendo 64, nothing was damaged, so why was it trolling me on the Nintendo 64? I even decided to play the hacked cartridge on the normal N64 to find...that the cartridge wasn't acting scary at all. When I opened it, there was still that File with 113 Stars, but when I played File B, nothing abnormal happened. It was as if the cartridge was never hacked...
I was curious as to why games worked normal on a normal N64 and freaky on this supposed Nintendo 64. Luckily, I had brought my entire collection of Nintendo 64 games on vacation (all I had were 21 games). So I was prepared to be spooked 20 more times... I thought.
I picked another N64 launch title, Pilot wings 64, to play on the Nintendo 64. Everything was fine, but when I opened it, I now had one rank in plane-flying, one rank in jetpack-flying, and three ranks in hang-gliding. That made no sense, as I am terrible at playing this game and probably wouldn't get these ranks. Lark was now Nester, which makes sense since he looks like the kid from Nintendo Power anyway. I had picked flying the plane, but when I started the mission, there were some big differences. Nester had a beard now (?) and the plane looked more like a Japanese bomber. Oh, man, this was horrifying. There was a big American flag on a ship, and without me ever pressing the fire button, a missile was launched. I paused the game, and quit, because I didn't want to reenact World War II in a Pilotwings game. One thing I will note is that I played it on this strange system twice, once with a boy and once with a girl. The boy's plane had the word "CANDYMAN" on it, while the girl's plane had the word "ENDERMAN" on it.
And of course, the game played the way it should play on the Nintendo 64.
The next game was Wave Race 64, and you'll never believe it, but there was a song looping through out: Totaka's Song. I'd be lying if I said I didn't want to find that song in Wave Race 64, but on a continuous loop, it just gets creepy. Whenever I lost the race, I fell into the ocean...and didn't come out. I played Mario Kart 64, where the hot air balloon on the Luigi Raceway popped and exploded on the track, killing Mario, Peach, and Donkey Kong. I got hit by the Kalimari Desert train and died. Then, I played Blast Corps, and upon hitting the truck with nuclear explosives, I saw more than the buildings explode. I saw cutscenes of people bleeding, melting, exploding, and so on. There was just apocalypitic death throughout, while there were strange long beings in the background. In Diddy Kong Racing, there were people blowing up each other with rockets so there was a rain of guts. In GoldenEye 007, I found only one file that was on Mission 1.1, with three cheat codes cracked. I played a new file, where 10 seconds into playing...the whole area blew up. It just blew up. I'm thinking this system hates Rare games.
With 1080 Snowboarding, my character wiped-out after jumping off the cliff, with blood around his head. With F-Zero X, the tracks were made to look scary, with hanging corpses of any racer who died during the race and floating dark figures all around. I got scared as well, and my vehicle blew up twice because of fearing. In Ocarina of Time, Link made a permanent face in the opening cutscene that looked liked a war face (Kubrick fans should know this reference). Navi wouldn't shut up, and talked more than before and at a faster rate, as if it was trying to warn me about something. The weirdest thing was that Tingle showed up, flying on his balloon, some what frozen in midair, and when I shot a rock at him, only blood came out. It reminded me of the monkeys from Halo 3.
But the worst was one of my favorite Nintendo 64 games, Banjo-Kazooie. In the opening, when Mumbo Jumbo comes out, Banjo gets irritated. The screen cut to black. I then heard a somewhat deafening scream. The most obvious guest is that Mumbo was killed by Banjo. We skipped the opening cutscenes and got straight into the game. I paused to find that I had been given an unlimited number of lives! You'd think I'd be happy, but this unlimited number only means death. The bear and bird could die in one hit, which happened when I touched the termite in Grunty's Castle. Then, the termite...ate Banjo and Kazooie. I watched stupified at this image until the termite burped. The Grunty laugh and iris were unnecessary, because I was alive and well at the front door of Grunty's Castle. Mumbo Jumbo's Mountain was unlocked when I got back, for no reason. The level's classic music was replaced by the music of...Bob-omb Battlefield. That's really kind. Whenever I hurt an enemy, there was a little blood. Then came that dumb gorilla throwing that stupid fruit at you. He's the kind of enemy you want to see die in a swamp. When I finally defeated him with 113 eggs, he did die...by exploding into a pool of blood. It was terribly gruesome, so I paused the game, which mae the Super Mario 64 pausing noise, to look into a mirror. I had been playing this Nintendo 64 for 3 hours. My eyes showed that I was on the verge of becoming depressed.
After that incident, I couldn't play this new system anymore. I tested my tested game son my real Nintendo 64. They all were perfectly fine, and were exactly how they were supposed to be. The only explanation was that the Nintendo 64 I just bought was somehow hacked into making perfectly functioning games horrific and different. But you can only hack systems to make backgrounds on startup menus different, not the way you play games. The N64 doesn't even have a startup screen!
I turned on the news while examining that strange number on the back. 1-100-116-3527. Why the different number? Then it hit me. 113 Stars. 113 instead of 103. 113 seconds of falling. 1.1, with 3 cheat codes cracked. 113 eggs to to be painted with gorilla blood. Somehow, the number 113 showed up in the games when played on the Nintendo 64. I looked at the phone number. 100-116-3527. 113. I also examined the 1 that almost always appears as the first number of a phone number. Suddenly , I remembered an easter egg put in every Pixar movie: A113. This stood for a CalTech classroom where Tim Burton and John Lassetter attended classes. The first letter of the alphabet is A. 1113=A113. Wow.
Probably because it was 7:15 and I was getting a little crazy from this stupid plastic console, I put my copy of GoldenEye 007 in the Nintendo 64. I go to the first cheat code I see and enter A113. Soon, all files were the same, but they didn't involve 113 at all. Each file was on Mission 6.6, with six cheat codes cracked. We all saw that coming. I played as A113 in Ocarina of Time, and my character kept being referred to as "darb". I have a bad feeling about this. Then, I went into Mido's house, where in the chest that should have had a heart container was a bomb that exploded on impact. A text box appeared: "Take that!" What, did Phoenix Wright hack the system? The creepiest thing was that the timer from Majora's Mask was at the bottom of the screen. When I died from the bomb, the moon popped out of nowhere, and crashed.
At 7:54, I started to examine my experiences with the games on the new system. They were almost all connected in some way. Candyman and Enderman? Somehow, I figured they could be translated into "Can die, man" and "End her, man." Then, I remembered Toad's description of Bowser. It sounded like what happens when you find an Enderman in Minecraft. Those dark figures in Blast Corps and F-Zero X were Enderman!
By this time, too, for no reason, I called the phone number. I knew no one would answer, but to my surprise, a familiar voice was heard. The clerk at the antique shop. I asked him if I could return my new system because it was acting strange. He then told me this:
"There was a system in there? That's too strange. It felt so light, so I assumed it was just an empty box. I wouldn't sell it if it didn't remind me of my son."
I asked him about his son. I'm surprised he answered.
"His name was Brad. He was just in love with the Nintendo 64. Nintendo was one of two of his favorite interests. The other was creepy pasta. But he became ill around 2007, and his one last wish was to be buried with his Nintendo 64, but in its original box along with a controller and copy of that Mario game.
"I received that box on September 30, 2011. I remember the day because, in sheer coincidence, it's the day of the fifteenth anniversary of the Nintendo 64. I was amused by the punk who wrote 'terror' on it."
I was in shock. Could it be? No, no, it couldn't.
"I still remember watching my boy write some notes and stuff them into the bottom of his N64 box."
I grabbed the box. I surveyed the bottom to find...white pieces of paper. But I didn't want to be rude, so I asked him where I could find his grave.
"Well, our town has two cemeteries. Brad lives in Cemetery A. He was the 113th person to be buried there."
There was silence for thirty seconds, until I said I'd be there tomorrow. I opened the paper to find three notes.
"Get N or get out"
The last note was written with the words going downward. I put the third note under the second, and you can guess what the new word was: SLENDERMAN. Then, the darkest realization yet hit me like a rock:
Brad spelled backwards is "darb."
The next day, I drove to the Antique Shop to drop off the Nintendo 64. I packed up my belongings and left the Homestead. On my way home, I drove past Cemetery A, but I just kept on driving. I was planning on living.