Some civilization -- Babylonian, I think -- which lived in a giant
onion-shaped island, with sides that curled up and separated everyone
living there from the outside world. Although right in the midst of a bunch
of other kingdoms, they had no idea of anything outside the island. After a
few tries, the key civilization succeeded in surviving until all of the
rival parties on the island were disintegrated. Complex and interesting
native music played, as the Babylonian king cast a huge hadoken-style
fireball and blew holes in the onion-sides of the island, letting light
It seemed this was some kind of odd game that I was playing in a place
which was a cross between the Insert Credit Fortress, as such, and a prep
school dorm. There was a dingy cafeteria and there were older adults in
charge. I had trouble getting food to cook correctly, and to find anywhere
decent to sleep.
Anyway. Once the remaining webwork of the onion-sides collapsed, there was
a flyover of all of the surrounding kingdoms -- which were all jammed
pretty close together. Princesses were leaning out of several towers,
waving. Then I saw The Jetsons. And then Fred Flintstone, dressed as Iori
I turned and pointed him out to other members of the Insert Credit crew,
who were in what was now a sort of ride with me. They weren't particularly
interested. They had something they wanted to get to, once the ride was over.
So, we all got off and proceeded to walk down a long, carpeted stairway
(with rubberized edges to each step, bolted down with large aluminum caps).
I inadvertently made eye contact with an asian fellow with a microphone and
a camera crew. I think it was the hat that I was wearing which caught the
guy's attention. (Not sure what the significance really was of this hat,
aside from the fact that it was given to me shortly beforehand.)
He asked me a question, to which I replied in the affirmative. I stopped,
as it seemed he wanted some kind of an interview, dealing with the event we
were attending. Everyone else in the Insert Credit crew had gone on ahead
by this point; they weren't paying attention to my absence. I figured that
I'd be able to catch up with them eventually, if I could remember where
they were off to.
The fellow filmed me for about three seconds, before he became distracted.
I was a bit disappointed, as I intended to give him a wholly unexpected
impression about the kinds of people who were attending this event.
Bored, I began executing complicated martial arts moves, up and down the
stairwell, often using the bannister as a tool. The reporter fellow
eventually wandered off, leaving me alone there.
At about that time, I noticed something out of the corner of my eye. The
boss at Insert Credit -- ex-Sega of America honcho Peter Moore -- was in
the midst of a private meeting (in a very public lounge area, through which
traffic was continuously flowing) with someone from SNK. A really powerful
Star Wars game was being demonstrated, on Neo-Geo hardware.
Thing is, as impressive as it was, at the end of every level there were
still stylized character portraits with cheesy Engrish quotes written
underneath. A Jedi would be saying something like "That's the last time you
mess with the force, dweebenheimer!"
They didn't seem to mind me watching (if they noticed me at all), so I hung
around. After the Star Wars demo ended, a full-motion animated version of
Ulala appeared, to boogie along to the Talking Heads' song "I Zimbra". She
kept pawing at her private areas.
A bunch of text and a mostly-indecipherable Japanese voiceover elucidated
the start of some facts about Ulala, including that she has a last name
which was eliminated before the first game went into production. It was in
kanji, though, so I couldn't read it.
I think this was a trailer for either a new Space Channel 5 game, or an
animated movie based upon the games. It was difficult to tell -- especially
since after only a few moments of this, I happened to wake up.
Eric-Jon Rössel Waugh.