Why are games so fascinated with cannibalism?
There’s a long inglorious tradition of cannibalism in video games, from the many flesh-eaters of the Dark Souls series through the “strange meats” of Fallout to the gaping cosmic horror that is Kirby. In the last few years, though, developers seem to have really acquired a taste for it. Take this spring’s The Wild Eight – a survival game distinguished by some neat firelight effects and the preposterous, yet strangely persuasive option to eat the corpse of your previous self, providing you can find your way back to it after you respawn.
In the course of six hours with the game I must have tracked down and gobbled myself up a dozen times over – filling my belly with my own, me-saturated remains in a sort of finger-licking, Ray Mears-authored parody of Inception. It’s a fairly sound survival strategy, up to a point: meat is hard to come by in The Wild Eight till you’ve crafted the right kind of stabby object, so there’s no sense letting stray chunks of it go to waste whatever or rather, whoever they were in life. And in any case, you’ll probably want to reclaim your precious gear from the site of your demise – just watch you aren’t eaten by something else en-route.
Cannibalism also has its advantages in Sunless Sea, Failbetter’s delightfully horrid naval exploration game. A ship is quite capable of operating with just one crew member, providing you don’t mind limping along, which makes the rest of your valiant band something of a disposable resource, rich in essential vitamins and fibre. When you’re miles from port, the gods are out to get you and you’ve run out of ghost crab/vampire bat to munch on, that little headcount indicator along the navbar starts to look awfully tempting. There’s a price to pay, in the form of the permanent character trait “Unaccountably Peckish”, but it’s more of a twist in the tale than a penalty, as your unholy taint unlocks certain unsavoury opportunities on shore.
Original Post By – Eurogamer