Exit thru the door in front of you. Stay alive.
That is all. One would think the instructions are clear enough. Yet time and again contestants are observed rereading them over and over as if expecting to find some hidden meaning. One competitor even went so far as to assume an anagram lay hidden in the text. When the door opened, well, it’s unlikely anyone will ever have as short a game. Poor fellow never saw it coming, though that might’ve been for the best.
One day a nondescript individual will say to you, “Excuse me.”
If you stop, this forgettable person will say something seemingly irrelevant – do you have the time, what’s today’s date, pardon me I thought you were someone else. The exchange, in all likelihood, won’t even stick in your memory. This is all part of the plan. The whole conversation is more a distraction than a dialogue. You’ve already been selected for participation. We’ve been watching you for some time, so there’s nothing more we need to know, and little we don’t. The whole point of our forgettable friend is to keep your attention while another individual surreptitiously applies a micro tab somewhere on your person.
The tab links with a supercomputer at an undisclosed mobile location. This supercomputer takes complete account of your atomic structure in a mere thirteen minutes. Several scientists are working tirelessly to get away from this number as many attach superstitious meaning to it; however, some feel given the nature of the game perhaps a little superstition isn’t so bad. In any event, once a rough estimate of your overall structure is calculated teleportation ensues. Granted, this isn’t always a spot on process, but there is a certain degree of assumption involved in mapping a living being’s structure down to the electrons.
That said it is only in the rarest of instances when something goes completely awry. Few people notice let alone complain about the loss of a mole or appendix, and it has been some time since whole limbs were lost, about 18 months or so. These days a finger might go missing, or get relocated.
Contestants are sent to the start of the game. There you will be given two minutes to read the instructions, and prepare. One contestant spent the entire time repeating, “OHGODOHGODOHGOD…” leaving many curious as to why more prayers aren’t as concise. Another contestant, a young lady from Kansas, slapped her face red, screamed at the door then took off running. She lasted 18 days which is better than most.
The door will open on a jungle setting. Research has found this locale is the best for staging the game. It provides myriad opportunities for every kind of game play. Contestants can hide, fashion primitive weapons, and above all else get lost in the shortest amount of time possible. Additionally, thanks to some clever work on the part of marketing several major motion pictures as well as video games have featured this type of setting creating an instant mental connection between horrifying action packed events and jungles. In other words, contestants are culturally primed to expect the worst at the sight of the jungle.
There are various entities one may encounter while in the game. These hostiles range from the mundane – starving panthers, angry anacondas, and clouds of bees – to remarkable terrors – robots, aliens, dinosaurs. Not all of these creatures get along with one another which is good not only for the strategic player but for entertainment value as well. Nothing is quite as captivating as watching a zombie Communist try to choke an anaconda with Marxist pamphlets.
Still, many of the jungle’s inhabitants aren’t hostile. These tend to be refugees relocated from already war torn countries. Their own homelands have sold them to the game in order to pay off debts owed to the World Bank, a branch of General Global Consumption – we make what you didn’t know you need. These friendlies provide aid whenever possible as they continue to be unaware their subjugation is the overall goal of the game.
Though players are given no indication on how to complete the game, those who survive long enough tend to begin consolidating power by taking control of the various jungle pirate factions. Raiding the villages occupied by friendlies tends to be the most expedient means of procuring food. While it is true some have tried more diplomatic measures other more sadistic competitors tend to view such actions as a sign to start murder stomping around the jungle. The blood crazed tend to last longer than the peaceful.
At present there are 18 factions in control of various amounts of the playing field, 57 year old Thelma Winston of St. Louis, Missouri being the most dangerous. She is known for her love of pit traps as well as being one of only two players to ever last more than three years. She still enjoys making pies, though her preferred fillings have gotten far grimmer than raspberries.
In four weeks the game will have been in action for 90 years. So be excited. Players are chosen at random. It may already be on your turn... have fun.