drugsfeature

6 Video Game Characters Under The Influence Of Drugs

by on September 16, 2013  

On September 29th, one of AMC’s greatest TV shows will be coming to an end. Breaking Bad took the story of Walter White, a cancer stricken chemistry teacher, and morphed him into an evil and manipulative Meth drug lord in the heart of Albuquerque, New Mexico.

In honor of the show ending, Garrett Glass and I started to think about a few video game characters that used drugs within their own games. So without further ado, here are our picks on 6 video game characters under the influence of drugs.

Garrett’s Choices

“You” (Lone Survivor)

The nameless character, “You,” is the sole survivor of a monster infested environment, and he is understandably questioning the reality of his situation. Anyone can descend to madness due to isolation, hunger and poor sleep; and the player can play a role in positively or negatively affecting his depleting mental stability. This is mainly exemplified through the game’s three types of color-coded pills: green, blue, and red. If “You” has trouble sleeping, he can take the green or blue pills; if he feels the need to stay awake, then he can take the red. To reinforce drug dependency, the character experiences different dreams with the blue and the green—both give the character different sets of items so that the players may become dependent. If he takes the green pill, he encounters the mysterious Man Who Wears a Box who gives him snacks; if he takes the blue pill, he encounters a violent old man who gives him ammunition. Both have detrimental effects on his overall mental health, which is scored at the end of the game, and they may cause the players to become dependent on the items and sleep.

Jack and the Citizens of Rapture (Bioshock)

Jack may rely on plasmids in order to gain special powers; however, the citizens of Rapture all deserve a spot on this list. Jack simply shows how it’s done; take the syringe full of plasmids, find the most visible vein in your forearm and voila! The citizens, however, show the detrimental effects of the drug. Everyone looks as if they’re remnants of their former selves—it’s eerily similar to the before and after pictures of methamphetamine users. They’ll even go to considerable lengths trying to ensure their latest fix, mainly by kidnapping the Little Sisters and attacking each other for ADAM. In real life, we don’t have plasmids to abuse for special powers; however, Bioshock shows similar yet exaggerated withdrawal symptoms found in real drugs—only they still get to throw bees at each other after hitting rock bottom.

Sniper Wolf (Metal Gear Solid)

Metal Gear Solid has a wide array of seemingly miscellaneous items, and if cigarettes can be an item then I suppose drugs can too. The most common drug in the game is Pentazemin, which is a muscle relaxant. Sniper Wolf was born on the battlefield, and sniping is her life; however, even one of the most skilled snipers in Metal Gear Solid lore is not above the performance enhancing effects of Pentazemin. Players get to experience the benefits themselves, as when sniping with Snake they’ll discover that his hands aren’t steady for such a badass. The Pentazemin takes care of that, and players will be able to snipe as competently in any other game. The drug wears off quickly, so we can see why Sniper Wolf may have developed a dependency to the drug.

Richard’s Choices

Jason Brody (Far Cry 3)

Ubisoft Montreal’s acclaimed action-adventure/ first-person shooter of 2012 was the subject of quite a bit of controversary for some critics. In choosing to deal with a range of mature themes such as graphic violence and sexual encounters, Ubisoft also ventured into the world of drug use. As the game’s lead protagonist, Jason Brody used hallucinogens at various times throughout the campaign. These drugs prevent the brain from functioning properly and therefore led to some trippy reactions afterward. While these sequences aided in showing off the game’s impressive graphical details, they also succeeded in providing key backstory elements to further flesh out the character. Lastly, they were an important element in helping to evolve Jason throughout his journey from a laidback douchebag to a vengeful cold and calculating killer.

Bane (Injustice: Gods Among Us, Arkham City and Origins)

Known simply as the supervillian who broke Batman’s will and his back, Bane has turned the caped crusader’s world upside-down on the big screen and other various forms of media. Bane’s obsession with venom is nothing new as the character has been pumping his veins full of the drug ever since he first joined the DC universe way back in January of 1993. In Injustice: Gods Among Us, Bane has a venom boost ability that he can use up to three times to inflict maximum damage upon his opponents. On the flip side, once the boost wears off he is instantly weakened and is subject to taking more damage. Not only is this a perfect example of the misleading upside to drug use, but also a clear illustration of the dangers of addiction.

Max Payne (Max Payne Series)

Ever since the Max Payne franchise first emerged onto the scene way back in the summer of 2001, the series hasn’t shied away from suggestive themes centered on alcoholism and drug use. Given Max’s high threshold for pain, the player is tasked with taking painkillers to alleviate his suffering. In Max Payne 3, using painkillers allows Max to go into Bullet Time mode and trigger his Last Man Standing ability. Once enabled, Max has a specified amount of time to kill his attacker and consume a painkiller to recover afterward. The game also features a multiplayer mode in which painkillers are used the exact same way. Based on the use of these mechanics, one could easily conclude that drugs are essential to this game because it allows players to keep moving forward at all costs.

This concludes our list on 6 video game characters under the influence of drugs. Do you agree or disagree with any of our picks? Can you think of any other video game characters that used drugs in their video games? Feel free to let us know your choices in the comments section below.

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