Editor's note: This is one of the pieces from our Community Homework: Your Top Five Gaming Quotes writing prompt. Daniel's included some fantastic quotes, including one of my favorites: Andrew Ryan's simple command. Bitmob community: What do you think of these quotes? -Jason
Five quotes from five great games: If you're not familiar with them, I suggest you play these games immediately. Or you can watch the clips if you're in a hurry.
“What is a man? A miserable little pile of secrets.”
Count Dracula, Castlevania: Symphony of the Night (1997)
This line from the very beginning of the game sounds profound or insightful, but it simply doesn’t make any sense. It’s easy to understand Dracula’s contempt for humans, but what do secrets have to do with anything? And how can you “pile” them?
For the record, his original line in Japanese is “くだらん。どちらが正しいか、死をもって解らせてやる.” which I would translate as “Ridiculous! Which of us is right? We will find out in death.”
“What, you’re going to fight against me? You damn fool.”
Master-D, Bionic Commando (1988)
We've got two important things to remember for this one: First, that’s Adolf Hitler. Adolf. Hitler. Second, it’s 1988. Video games were still very much a children’s medium, and nobody ever used profanity. Yet there I was, sitting in front of an NES, and Adolf Hitler cursed me out. Don’t worry — I made him eat those words.
“What imprudence, you human being! Face your trial by God.”
Gal Agiese, Magician Lord (1990)
Again, note the year. At the time, video games with speech were mighty rare. Magician Lord is one of the earliest Neo Geo games, which means it looked and sounded unlike anything else I had seen before. To have a sinister-looking character appear and threaten me out loud with divine punishment was shocking stuff. He says different lines before each boss, and they’re all vaguely creepy.
Andrew Ryan, BioShock (2007)
This is from the emotional climax of BioShock when you finally see Andrew Ryan, the creator of Rapture, face to face. It’s a powerful scene that doesn’t end how you would expect given that Ryan had spent every moment before this meeting trying to kill you. When he bellows at you to make a choice, he is in agony (physically and mentally), and I had nothing but sympathy for him. Part of me wishes this was the end of the game.
Keeper’s Diary, Resident Evil (1996)
This is, hands-down, my favorite video-game moment of all time. The Keeper’s Diary is a document you find while exploring the mansion. Written by an Umbrella employee charged with caring for caged animals, it details his descent into madness as he is infected with the T-virus. His entries slowly degrade in grammar and vocabulary as his condition worsens. After he admits to killing and eating a coworker, the last page of the diary contains just these two words:
Daniel Feit was born in New York but now lives in Japan, where he teaches English to Japanese children and writes for Wired Game|Life and Film Junk. Follow him on Twitter @feitclub or visit his website, feitclub.com.