Hey All, Here's just a stupid theory I came up with on Polybius
I know it's been done to death but I just wanted to throw my hat into the ring.
First off, a recap:
Polybius was a supposed arcade game that was released in 1981, The game was apparently similar to Atari's Tempest, but featured
trippy visuals designed as part of a government brainwashing scheme known as MK Ultra (no, it's not a Mortal Kombat sequel) the game
was apparently known to drive players insane, it had such symptoms as: nightmares, night terrors, suicidal thoughts, and other nasty stuff.
Also, men in black apparently visited the machines to collect data from the arcade machines, the game was wildly successful and even created queues to play it, I would say that the bezel would have been scratched to hell
with all the quarters being placed on it (a sign to let the person playing know
that you wanted to play the machine after they were done, essentially reserving a game) 2-3 months after the game appeared in arcades
it vanished without a trace, not like the game was out of order, literally vanished,
as in a gap was left in between the other games.
AN OVERVIEW OF THE GAMEPLAY:
Polybius' apparent gameplay is quite simple: your spaceship is on the left, you must
rotate the circular base in the middle and fire at the core through the base's openings
Meanwhile, attack missiles leave the base to try and hit you, you must avoid these by
rotating the turrets that create the missiles away from you, so, I bet you're wondering
"How is this hypnotic?, it just sounds like a decent early 80s shoot-em-up, the kind that were
everywhere at that time." the main thing that apparently hypnotises players is the background,
as it contained moving images such as spirals and the like, the kind used to create simple eye
To be honest, the whole thing sounds complete nonsense, In 1981, hardware was not advanced enough
to create smooth spirals that could run at a reasonable speed, and the fact that apparently the game
used vector AND raster graphics is just completely ludicrus, because:
1. There are 2 types of CRT monitors used in arcade games, one that is designed only for vector graphics
and another that is designed for raster graphics, Raster monitors are the same as CRT TV screens, it creates images via pixels, where as
vector is essentially a glorified oscilloscope, it creates image via lines. it is impossible to combine the two, as that would A: be a voltage hog
and B: have the 2 electron guns collide and create a jumbled image.
2. The cost of said monitor, if it existed, would be stupendous, given that a standard CRT monitor was about 10 - 20 grand in 1981.
3. It would be insanely unreliable, the capacitors would probably blow after about a week of usage, or the yolk (the circuit board on the
end of the tube) would be fried to a crisp.
Also, to create the spiral backgrounds, it would need some form of video system, such as a VCR or Laserdisc player, as stated above.
1. The game was apparently made by a company with the name Sinneslochen.
2. The game was only found in Portland, Oregon, USA
3. Players queued to play the game.
4. The game had bad effects on players, such as nightmares and suicidal thoughts
5. It also apparently had subliminal messages that would either flash on screen or be played as part of the audio.
In 1983, a company known as Simutrek released the LASERDISC game Cube-Quest. The gameplay? A spaceship shooting at missiles while laserdisc-generated backdrops fly past, there is even a bonus level that involves shooting at a base.
What I think happened is, Portland was a huge arcade testing ground in the early 80s, prototypes would be put in arcades to get consumer feedback on if the
game was worth finishing or not, Polybius was the early prototype of Cube Quest and had different visuals from its final version. the game was said to be too bland and was swiftly removed one month later and reworked into Cube Quest in 1983. The person who recounted Polybius must have been uncomfortable about the game and greatly exaggerated their discomfort years later and blamed it on the game.
Sinneslocchen was just them mis-remembering the creator's name, Simutrek
So, there you go. Any Thoughts?
(I know I say apparently a lot, That's just how could describe the rumoured features )