Top Three: Scary Gadgets
With Halloween fast approaching, here’s a look at some old technology capable of giving anyone nightmares…
What? – Children’s toy
Scary because – Almost impossible to switch off.
During Christmas 1999, it was almost impossible to get hold of a Furby. It was the toy that every child wanted that Christmas, a cute little creature that could talk and even gradually learn English. Whilst the belief was that it would listen to what you say and repeat it over time, like a parrot, this was just an urban myth. Furbies could react to being stroked, being put in the dark or being turned upside down. There was just one problem: there was no off switch. Whilst removing the batteries could silence them, this required a screwdriver. Luckily, they had good enough manners not to shout in Furbish at night-time but they would often have something to say during the day. True fact: US government agencies banned them from their offices over security fears.
What? – 3D games console from the mid-90s
Scary because – It could damage your eyes
Long before the 3DS, Nintendo forayed into 3D gaming will the ill-fated Virtual Boy. Whilst never publically released in the UK, the console gained notoriety worldwide firstly for it’s ugly design (an ugly black and red table-top mounted virtual reality visor) and the fact that playing it for extended periods of time could reportedly cause seizures. There was even a switch on each game cartridge that gave you a ‘rest break’ every 15 minutes so your eyes could rest from staring at a weird set of red and black lines making up a 3D graphic. Needless to say, it was a massive flop. Will the 3DS follow the same path?
What? – (Fictional) computer system in charge of Aperture Science
Scary because – She wants to kill you, after making you complete more scientific tests
Antagonist of the two critically acclaimed Portal video games; GLaDOS is a computer system that loves to test out science. After she killed everyone at Aperture Science, where she was created, she set about subjecting remaining human test subjects to a series of puzzling tests where she would mock them about their weight, amongst other things. Her friendly yet creepy computerised voice sends shivers down any gamer’s spine and to top it all IGN declared her the greatest computer game villain of all time. Just remember though, don’t believe her promise of cake. The cake is a lie.
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