Berzerk

Berzerk is a true story about the weird deaths of two young men who played the same video game in their local arcade. They were the first people in history who were killed by a computer game.

Berzerk

Berzerk was a very successful arcade game that was released in 1980. It was invented by Andrew McNeil after he had a nightmare where he was trapped in a video game and forced to fight robots. The title of the game came from a book called ‘The Berzerker Stories’ about robots who go insane and kill everybody.

Berzerk was the first video game in history that actually killed two of its players.

In the game, you have to guide a little man around a maze which is filled with killer robots who fire lasers at you. If the robots shoot you, you die. If the robots touch you, you die. If you touch the walls, you die. Your nemesis is a bouncing smiley face named Evil Otto who appears out of nowhere and tries to destroy you. Evil Otto is unusual because there is no way to kill him.

Berzerk was one of the first video games to use speech. When you walked by it in the arcade, it would scream, “Coins detected in pocket!” During the game, Evil Otto would scream, “Intruder alert! Intruder alert! The humanoid must not escape! Kill it!”

In January 1981, Jeff Dailey became the first person to be killed by playing a video game. The 19-year old died of a massive heart attack right after attaining a high score of 16,660 on Berzerk.

In April 1982, 18-year old Peter Burkowski Peter Burkowski arrived at Friar Tuck’s Game Room in Calumet City, Illinois. He went straight to the video game machines, dropped a coin into the slot and started playing Berzerk. After 15 minutes, he got his initials into the Top Ten scoreboard. Then, he suddenly collapsed and died of a heart attack.

Evil Otto watched both of them die… with a big smile on his face.

Over the years, there have been a number of other fatalities caused by playing video games.

A 33-year-old man from China died after a staggering 27 days of online game play. That’s 650 hours of non-stop gaming. Over this period he barely drank or slept and all he ate was ramen noodles. He died of heart failure and malnutrition.

A 13-year old girl named Anna-Lee Kehoe was playing with her Xbox 360 when she started muttering, “Mom, I can’t breathe.” She suffered a heart attack so severe that she was left brain dead and on life-support. Anna-Lee’s parents decided to pull the plug, making her one of the youngest video game deaths in history. Anna-Lee had asthma and doctors speculated that an asthma attack may have contributed to her heart attack.

A South Korean man called Lee Seung Seop died in 2005 after playing Starcraft. He lost his job and his girlfriend because he spent all of his time playing the game. After a 50-hour gaming binge, Lee told his friends he was going to stop playing and go home. Then, he closed his eyes and fell off his chair. Lee died of heart failure caused by exhaustion and dehydration.

In 2007, a 26-year-old man named Zhang, from Northeast China, died of heart failure after a week-long marathon of online gaming during a national holiday. Zhang was an internet addict who weighed over 330 pounds and never got any exercise.

In 2012, an 18-year old gamer from Taiwan named Chuang died after playing Diablo III for 40 hours straight. He was in an internet cafe at the time passed out by a terminal. When he was awoken by an employee, he managed to stand up, took a few steps, then collapsed. No cause of death was identified at the time, and police were investigating what mind have led to Chuang’s untimely demise.

The most recent video game death was 20-year old Chris Staniforth from the United Kingdom who suffered a pulmonary embolism. Chris frequently participated in 12-hour long Halo sessions without breaks and during one campaign, a blood clot traveled from his legs into his lungs, killing him instantly.

Comments

  1. Dobbyisfree says

    The one about the 13 year old I had to read twice. Scary. Sad. All of them horrid and creepy.

  2. Rhiannon1 says

    The last death was dramatized on the show, 1000 Ways To Die!!!!! The name and location was changed for the guy’s protection.

  3. CrypticDolly13 says

    SFK, you guys should post some creepy past gaming stories! They’re really good and would be good stories to put on the site!

  4. Shadow_of_Darkness says

    @nat the killer123 and Night Wolf
    Your stories are good, but I still miss flamefletcher. What happened to him? :'(

  5. patrick_jane says

    I’ve found another man that died because of diablo 3. Russell Shirley, he died after played diablo 3 for 4 days straight. Cause of death was heart attack. Man, I don’t know what those people thought. I mean I’m gamer too, but never be controlled by games, even those games were cool.

  6. happenstance says

    you know I’m going get a lot of hate for this but scary for kids hasn’t had a good story anywhere on this recent posts or the last(probably I cant remember)

  7. deathy says

    UGG! I have NOTHING to do this Summer. I want scary stories!!!! GIMMEE SKARY STORIES!!!!!!!!! :^0<AAAAAHHHHHHHHH)

  8. Carcass says

    Someone in our family had played Berzerk in the late 1980s. He played it constantly , but stopped when he had developed mild schizophrenia from the game and other addicting games.He complained about hearing the game sounds and robots. After a few years,he was okay. c: Not scary but yeah.(=゚ω゚)ノ

  9. Requiem says

    I suggest writing a type of story your siblings didn’t write about yet, parents like touching stories, mostly, so write about something unique but in their favor. If its short, I recommend you decide if you want it to take place in a short period of time or not. If its about a girl whose dog died from cancer in a week, add lots of details about her pain and heartache. It it’s about a adoptive girl looking for her real parents for over a month, add complicated events, but not as much dialogue.
    If you can’t think of a idea, I always make up titles. If one rings a bell, I start to plot it randomly and then add the details. Some people like to make it up as they to but I can’t.
    Don’t make it too complicated with loads of characters too. I always do that. Try to keep it nice but not too dull. Think of “suddenly”, I always use that word (from Gooney Bird) to make a story suspenseful. There’s millions of other writers out there who have tips and visit their sites. Here we aren’t master of literature, and the tips aren’t pro, but I hope it helps.
    P.S: Some parents don’t like violence, even a bit of blood. Make sure the story has a bit of everything. Suspense, romance, humor (adults love this), and mystery. If they like twists, add a twist. I hope this helps and I’m not wasting my 5 minutes if you dislike this.

  10. happenstance says

    hey im bored lets start a chain well i woke to the sounds of silence cutting like knives in a fist fight and i found you with a bottle of wine your head in the curtains and heart like the fourth of july

  11. quietwriterofepitaphs says

    write a scary murder ghost story about a child who goes mental after her mom brutally abuses her because she killed the dad…. and then eventually the dad comes back the mom gets freaked out dies and then the child dies….. the dad haunts the house and such.

  12. superninja says

    sfk didnt add a story for almost a month, then came back with 2 new stories, now no new stories for 8 days…

  13. happenstance says

    @TamasakiLion firt how long is it second murder ghost or like a monster ect ect ect so figure that out before anyone can help u

  14. TamasakiLion says

    HELP.I need advice for writing because i’m gonna write a horror story and have it finished by the end of summer.My siblings are against me, and my parents will give me $100 if I write the best.My sis always gets money and it’s getting to a point where it’s annoying.(My parents have to owe her money,too)my brother and sis are probably not a better writer than me but my parents are really gullible, so i need to be WAY better.PLEASE HELP cuz it will be my first time winning.

  15. TamasakiLion says

    HELP.I need advice for writing because i’m gonna write a horror story and have it finished by the end of summer.My siblings are against me, and my parents will give me $100 if I write the best.My sis always gets money and it’s getting to a point where it’s annoying.(My parents have to owe her money,too)my brother and sis are probably not a better writer than me but my parents are really gullible, so i need to be WAY better.PLEASE HELP cuz it will be my first time winning.

  16. Night Wolf says

    SFK, I have a story called “Deadly Love Triangle”
    Denise was in a current long distance relationship. No matter how many times her boyfriend, Josh, told her he loved her, she would get suspicious because he would do it out of the blue. Also, he would tell her about this perfect blonde girl with a busty chest and perfect ass who wouldn’t leave him alone.
    “Of course, she’s blonde,” Denise thought. One day, she couldn’t take it anymore. She finally decided to visit him.
    She drove to a beauty parlor to get dolled up and impress him with her dark locks and attractive body. Once she was finished, Denise dove to his house in Tennessee but kept her car parked away from his house. She walked the rest of the way so she could surprise him. As she continued her way, she saw someone familiar: Marisol, the blonde from the pictures he sent her. No matter how much she wanted to strangle her, she thought of a plan to get rid of her.
    “Hey! Aren’t you Marisol?”
    She gave Denise a dirty look and walked on.
    “Why won’t you answer me?” She asked in frustration.
    “You stole my guy! I have more game than you and we both know it.”
    “My guy? I’m single! I’m here to visit my cousin!” Denise yelled in confusion.
    In her mind, her plan was working perfectly. Marisol’s guard went down and had an apologetic express.
    “I’m sorry. It’s just that he’s been telling me how he loves you and finds you more attractive than me. Even I agree.”
    Denise looked at Marisol in disbelief. She went along with it and continued on.
    “Well I’m jealous of your looks and stuff! No homo! Who’s the lucky Guy?” Denise joked.
    “Josh now but I guess he made stuff up to get girls.”
    “Let’s pull a prank on him.”
    Marisol gladly agreed.
    They drove to the nearest thrift store and picked up black clothing and a “fake gun”
    Denise payed the man at the back part of the store to give her a real one. Once finished, they drove to his house and hid at the right side of the house.
    “Help me! I broke my leg! I’m at the left side of your house!” Denise shouted.
    Josh’s mom went running outta the house to see if everything was alright. That was they’re chance to sneak into Josh’s room. Denise covered his mouth as Marisol held the gun at hus temple.
    “Josh! What’s happening?” Shouted his mother from his door.
    “Calm down Mrs. Lenon. It’s fake, see?” Marisol aimed and fired at his mom’s heart.
    Marisol realized what she had done and broke down. Denise smiled at the scene as her plan had worked.
    “Marisol! I know I said my mom was a bitch but why?! Get out!”
    Josh called 911 and the police came roaring down the street. They kicked the door in and took Marisol in. They say she went insane the first week and killed herself in her cell. As for his mom, she was pronounced dead and put in her casket the following day. During the ceremony, Josh whispered to Denise:
    “Babe, I’m sorry I was kinda into that bitch. You’re the only one I can trust. I’ll love you forever.”
    “I accept your apology. I’ll always love you forever also babe.”
    As soon as the ceremony was over, Denise gave the buried casket of his mother a smirk and walked off with her forever to be man.

  17. AshleyIsToDope says

    Awwww… :( but i really really really really really……..3 hours later , love black ops 2 :”(

  18. Night Wolf says

    Mario and Luigi have company
    Luigi: The house is a mess! We gotta get it clean!
    Mario: I have an idea
    *5mins later
    princess peach is there
    Peach: Guys why is there sheets everywhere
    Mario:it’s a fortress around the house. Turn the lights off! Grab flashlights!
    Peach: yay! Okay
    Mario: *whispers to luigi. Told you it would work

  19. nat the killer123 says

    night wolf i konw that it not the same i said it was the first time i not the best one at doing it so can you help out

  20. indigo says

    @_@” I never expect someone will respon it that long.. I feel embarassed.. (>_<)
    Well.. Thanks for your tips and advice Mechi ! I'll try to improve my english from now on.
    (please. don't 'judge' this comment too. My heart is beating very fast just because I read ur comment.. I'm nervous easily..
    I've had enough of your 'judgement', Master Mechi.. Heheheh XD )

  21. angel of death girl says

    erm well i played this game for ages and nothing has happened to me so yeah…..

  22. nat the killer123 says

    Mario and Luigi

    Mario: luigi you been playing that game for 3 hours!

    Luigi: shut up i on the 5 to last level!

    Mario: come on i miss you.

    Luigi: dude shut up i almost died because of you.

    Mario: ok bye.

    6 hours later.

    Luigi: hey what you doing?

    Mario: your back!Man i miss you.

    3 second later Luigi pass out

    Mario din’t care

    Mario: that what he get for dich me

    this is my first time doing this so don’t say anything that mean

  23. Samara says

    Thank God m nt addicted to Video Games…!
    @ Mechi…Wow! Ur grammar correction and tips are really good …:)

  24. Requiem says

    I read the whole grammar correction thing and WOW!
    @Mechi, are you a English teacher?

  25. Mechi says

    @indigo Your English is ok, but could use a lot of work. First off, you would begin to say “Wow, I never knew there was a death caused by a game” (as you are talking about something in the past, you would use the past verb ‘knew’ instead of ‘know’).you could have also said “I never knew someone died from playing a video game”.Secondly, saying “i’m a gamer too” is partially correct, but in the English language you ALWAYS capitalise the ‘I’, and you always add a , before the word “too” (or before a conjunction and when breaking off into another sentence). The correct way to type it would be “I’m a gamer, too” or “I’m also a gamer”.Now let’s take a closer look at “Better more careful when playing”. It’s grammaticality incorrect, as you NEED a subject AND a verb to fully complete a sentence, so the correct way to say it would be “You better be more careful when playing”. BUT because the sentence is vague on what it’s addressing, you would have to reword it, such as “You should be more careful when playing video games”. In this case, since you have talked about someone dieing due to video games in your previous sentence, it’s clear on what you mean when you say “You better be more careful”, so it is ok to use that sentence. However, if you were to use that sentence as a standalone,it wouldn’t make sense on what you were talking about and would then become unclear and vague (for example, saying someone should be more careful would bring up the question “I should be careful of WHAT exactly?”). So provide a 2nd subject in sentences that ask a question of “Who?” or “What?”.Lastly, to address your “PS” message “is mine English right?”. No, this sentence needs a few adjustments in order to be “right”. You would need to say “my” instead of “mine”. You use “my” in circumstances like “That’s my watch” or “She’s my sister”, and use “mine” as in “That watch is mine” and “That ribbon is mine, not my sister’s”. In other words, you use “my” before the noun or subject, and “mine” after the noun or subject.The last sentence “I’m still studying it” is correct and does not need any revisions, but as I told you before, if this sentence was by itself it wouldn’t make any sentence, as you would need a proper noun or a more descriptive noun than just “it”. “it” doesn’t tell you what you are studying, so a proper subject needs to go there, in the case of a standalone sentence, “English” would need to replace “it”. Also, I’m not trying to insult you or be rude in any way. I’m just trying to give you some tips in how you can improve your English.

  26. indigo says

    Wow.. i never know there is a death caused by game..
    i’m a gamer too.. better more carefull when playing..

    P.S. : Is mine english right?
    I’m still studying it..

  27. indigo says

    Wow.. i never know that is a death caused by game..
    i’m a gamer too.. better be carefull when playing..

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