Just one of myriad helpful hints that the classic arcade game Gauntlet would speak to the players from some wacky sample memory thingee.

Others include:
  • Don't shoot the food
  • Valkyrie, your life-force is running out
  • Shots do not hurt other players...yet
  • Save keys to open doors
  • Wizard has reflective shots
  • Red Wizard now has limited invisibility
  • Yellow Warrior now has temporary repulsiveness
  • Use magic to kill death!

To those who have not played Gauntlet or Gauntlet II multiplayer, phrases like "Elf needs food badly" and "Elf is about to die" may seem pretty awful. Your character is low on health! You might die! However, that's not so bad at all. Those messages mean you're going to die - in the game. However, once you got this a message like this:

"Red wizard shot the food"

You weren't worried about your character anymore, because depending on how far you were into the game and how your comrades' characters were doing, there would be a strong chance that you'd be taking some damage in real life. Gauntlet is a game that induces rage, because of wonderful features like monster generators and Death, and when one of your own companions screws the whole party over, the rage has to go somewhere, because yelling at the Sorcerers doesn't do anything.

Similar effects could be seen whenever the goddamn elf took the speed potion again! Or when the wizard took the magic potion, etc.

Thank god someone else remembers Gauntlet! Now I can prove to my girlfriend I am not insane!

Our local grocery store recently installed U-Scan machines. For those unfamiliar with this mechanical incarnation of satan, it is a system that allows you to scan the barcodes of your items yourself, bag them yourself, and handle the money stuff yourself. It even works... about 3 percent of the time. The rest of the time, it chimes helpful messages like "Please place the item in the bag" (of course, after you have already placed said item in said bag) and "Please wait for cashier assistance", at which point you stand in front of the machine for ages waiting for someone to check your ID, kick the machine, or do something else that should be done by the cashiers, who's salaries you're paying when you buy your miniwheats and beer... But I digress.

The voice that issues these worthless messages sounds exactly like the voice in Gauntlet! That being the case, the first time I heard it (which was, of course, in a long, crowded line), I blurted out (perhaps a bit loud):

"Blue Valkyrie is about to die"

The silence and stares clued me in... No one else played Gauntlet (losers). My girlfriend doesn't think it exists. Now, I shall be vindicated.

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