Written by JPBrigatti from the SomeOrdinaryGames Wiki
Recently, I sold my Xbox 360 to pay back a debt I had and subsequently lost one of my favorite games of all time; Dead Rising. It was the first game I bought for the 360 and it left an impression on me, so naturally I wasn’t excited about this. While I was browsing the Dead Rising Wiki, I got a message from a user named “Ed.” The only thing that the message contained was a MegaUpload link to a file called “deadrisingpc.exe”. This piqued my curiosity on many levels. Was there really a hacked PC version of Dead Rising that I hadn’t heard of? Who was “Ed” and how did he get such a common username? Why did someone I don’t even know just send me a link to this? It wasn't only me, though. Everyone in the Wiki received the same link. I thought it was a virus at first, but after a scan and careful consideration, I downloaded it and hoped for the best.
The first thing I noticed was that the game ran very smoothly. This was surprising, given that my computer is a dinosaur and can barely run Oblivion without chugging. In addition to this, the hack was very professionally put together. I expected it to be an emulator of some kind, or a shitty bootleg, but ran sort of like the PC version of Dead Rising 2 (Also a very good game, but i prefer the first one). Despite these oddities, I was in a state of euphoria that I had found a real, working hack for this game (and free, not to mention), so I ordered a pizza, opened a 6 pack of beer, and started a new game. Now for those of you who haven’t played/heard of Dead Rising before, here’s the gist of it. You play as Frank West, a photojournalist, who infiltrates a mall in Willamette, Colorado to cover a story, only to find that the mall is crawling with zombies. The game takes place over a 72 hour period, over which you take part in the main storyline (cases) about uncovering the story behind the outbreak and side missions (scoops) where you rescue survivors, kill psychopaths, and fulfill requests. One of the main quirks to the game is that you are on a set time limit, and if you miss a case or scoop, it disappears for the whole 72 hour game. However, if you complete all the cases, you unlock “Overtime Mode,” a continuation of the story for another 24 hours. After completing Overtime, you unlock “Infinity Mode,” which is a sort of survival game where your health drains constantly and all of the survivors and psychopaths of the game try to kill you. But in my game…
There was no Infinity Mode. It had been replaced by something called “Psychopath Mode.” I first thought that this might have been something they put in the PC version only, and then I realized I was being retarded, since there was no real PC version. I was getting tired at this point from at least 5 hours of straight gaming, but there was something very compelling about this. Maybe it was curiosity, but I ignored the fact that I was about to pass out and entered “Psychopath Mode.” As it turned out, I would regret this later.
It started me out in the security room at night. I would have thought this was Infinity Mode (since you start in the same place), except that Brad, Jessie, Otis, and all the other survivors were in the security room. They all had the option to talk, but they all said something along the lines of:
“We won’t go out until you kill all the psychos”.
Deciding to explore further, I went into the Entrance Plaza. After the loading screen, I got the intro cutscene for the Sniper Family (Roger, Jack and Thomas), some of the psychopaths in the game. I was equipped with a small chainsaw, a sniper rifle, and loads of orange juice, so the fight was pretty easy. While chasing Roger with the chainsaw, I noticed that the bar where your Prestige Points (DR’s version of EXP) are shown was red instead of blue or orange (It is orange in Infinity Mode). After killing Roger and Jack, the last psychopath was Thomas, who was just as easy, but he didn’t die after his health was drained all the way. He fell to the floor, and then crawled on the ground, trying to flee. A text box showed up:
“Please don’t kill me, mister!” and a choice of Yes or No.
This was strange to me, since you never make any dialogue choices in DR. I chose “Yes,” which caused Frank to shoot Thomas in the head with the sniper. It sort of startled me, but I regained control of Frank and decided to venture on. I thought I had figured it out. It was just like Infinity mode, with only psychopaths trying to kill you. After executing Thomas, though, the gamma went down for some reason, and I started seeing weird flashes of color on the screen occasionally. But what caught my attention was that the red bar had gone down slightly. I don’t really know why, but I was worried about keeping that red bar up as much as possible.
The rest of the gameplay basically consisted of defeating psychopaths. There were one or two for each plaza, such as Kent for Paradise, Jo and Adam for Wonderland, Steven and Cletus for North, and the Convicts for Leisure Park. Each time I beat them, I’d get the same text, with the same option, with the same gruesome death for each psycho. I tried choosing “No” for some of them, but all that happened was they disappeared and reappeared with full health in the same location, so I would just have to beat them again. It was like the game was forcing me to kill them. Every time a psycho died, the red bar would go down a little more, and I would get a little more worried. In addition to this, the strange effects I mentioned earlier increased in magnitude. Pictures of disfigured faces would flash on the screen (with no hyper-realistic graphics, by the way. The face had the same model as a zombie head.) and the camera would tilt at odd angles. As the bar got down to a quarter full, Frank would occasionally do an animation similar to the one where he would grab his stomach and stumble around (which usually occurs after he eats rotten food or always when he drinks an Randomizer), only he would grab his head and scream. I was nearly in hysterics as the meter reached its end. I finally executed the last psychopath (Brock), when Frank clutched his head and fell to the floor, screaming like a fucking banshee and crying. The screen faded to black.
As the game faded back in, I was placed on the security room rooftop. I was not, however, playing as Frank West. I was playing with the guy who flies your helicopter in the opening cutscene, Ed DeLuca. I thought about the mysterious message from “Ed” who probably got his name from this character. I went down to the security room, which was covered in blood (once again, not hyper-realistic blood). Judging by the hand prints on the floor, it looked like someone was dragged out of there.
Traveling from plaza to plaza, the mall was unnaturally quiet. It was kind of like Overtime Mode when the Special Forces clean the place of zombies. Around every corner, I would see a survivor from the security room hung from some places in the mall, or burnt to a crisp with a machete through their face. I felt like I was being watched, and I would see something out of the corner of my eye every time I found another dead survivor.
Then, in Leisure Park, I thought I heard footsteps and heavy breathing behind me, so I turned the camera around and saw none other than Frank West running at me drenched in blood wielding a small chainsaw.
I ran and didn’t look back, searching for the nearest door to another area. I know it sounds stupid that I was running from a video game character, but at that point I felt like I was really being chased by a maniac with a chainsaw.
I ran into the North Plaza, greeted by more dead survivors. At this point, I didn’t know what to do, since all there was to do was get chased after by Frank and look at dismembered bodies. I was about to call it a night and quit (which I really should have done in hindsight), but I had a strange feeling there was something I was missing, so I took a look at my map and noticed a question mark (an indicator for a scoop in the main game) in the Maintenance Tunnels near the Meat Processing Center. I knew i wouldn’t be able to go to sleep without finishing this, so I took my chances and headed down to the maintenance tunnels.
Anybody who’s played Dead Rising knows that the Maintenance Tunnels are usually packed from wall to wall with zombies. Since there were none now, and i was not being chased by Frank, i felt the loneliest i had ever felt in my life walking down the road. When I reached the Meat Processing Center, every instinct and every thought in my head told me to not go into that room, but curiosity got the best of me, so I proceeded.
What happened next is something that I don’t usually like to think about, since every time I do my head spins and my hands shake. All of the psychopaths that I had killed as Frank in the beginning were hanging on meat hooks. Each body had an inspect action applied to it, which read out their name and the in-game time that they died in a text box. The room was lighted red because of all the blood, and I heard the faint sound of crying coming from the walls. After taking a minute due to the immense feeling of dread I felt in this room, I noticed an empty hook in the back of the room. The text box said:
“Ed DeLuca, NOW.”
The screen cut out then, and I heard the sound of a chainsaw revving and a man screaming. The program then force quitted back to my desktop. No sleep came to me that night.
I couldn’t stop thinking about this for a day or two. Why had this been programmed in? Why would someone make this disgusting thing? But after pondering it for a while, I think I finally understand it. The survivors in the security room were hiding because of the psychopaths in the mall. Frank had been elected to go out and clean them up. However, each time he killed, he did in cold blood, causing him to slowly go insane. After finally snapping, he came back to the security room, murdered everyone and scattered their corpses all over the mall. Ed then came to pick Frank up after the 72 hour time limit and was murdered himself.
Frank had become the very thing that he fought against in the beginning.
I’m not sure, but I think the programmer of the hack wanted to state something with this. It might have been an alternate storyline to the original game.
I still play Dead Rising 1 in my computer, but obviously I stay the hell away from "Psychopath Mode".