This was a triumph. I'm making a note here, huge success.
Last updated on April 29, 2011 at 08:00 PM

I seem to be dealing with a preponderance of insane, megalomaniacal computers lately.

My weekly game group and I recently started preparation for playing Paranoia, a game absolutely ruled by "Friend Computer." We'd barely started character creation and were already going out of our way to prove each other treasonous through various implausible accusations. We haven't even started playing, and already the game has been more entertaining than some campaigns I've played.

On the single-player front, I recently began plugging away at "Portal 2." Even though it meant almost certain doom, I practically cheered when GLaDOS was reconstituted from the dead. Oh, sorry, spoiler alert. But, really, anyone going into "Portal 2" thinking there would be no GLaDOS either didn't play the first game (and, therefore, it doesn't matter) or is seriously deluded in his or her expectations.

If there's such a thing as a passive-agressive maniac, GLaDOS is the perfect example. Take for instance her constant needling about the player character's weight: "Waddle over to the exit, if you can." Or, perhaps this classic line: "That thing you burnt up isn't important to me. It's the fluid catalytic cracking unit. It made shoes for orphans. Nice job breaking it, hero."

I feel strangely loved.

Also, as a quick aside, I happened to be continuing my journey through "Castlevania: Lords of Shadow" and came across a scroll which proclaimed near the end that, "The cake is not a lie!"

The thing that both these disparate games have in common, beyond homicidal computers, is this: The pure joy of comedy.

I'm not entirely what about an insane computer intending on vaporizing (or shooting, or poisoning) you elicits a hearty guffaw.

"Terminator's" Skynet is generally only terrorizing (although that may have more to do with it's insistence on showing the Governator's naked bum).

HAL-9000 is also an object of abject terror. Who wants to be doomed to a slow, suffocating death somewhere along the way from Mars to Jupiter? Not I, and certainly not Dr. Frank Poole.

And yet, within the gaming sphere madness + artificial intelligence + witty one-liners = hilarity. The witty one-liners I get. The rest is a mystery.

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