You ever read a gamer story? Where someone decides to become the ultimate gamer, unlocking every perk, becoming super strong, making friends with everyone, so on and so forth? See, I got more than a little bored of that after a while. Sure, some do it well, but the majority follow the same tiring cliches. So I'm going to change two things, and two things only; the gamer mind level, and the gamer body level. Get ready for something far more realistic.
He woke up screaming.
His eyes darted left and right, neither comprehending the situation nor his current condition. Slowly, he ran out of breath, and slowly, his eyes lost their frantic gleam. He stopped screaming, and instead took deep, heavy breaths, holding back the bile and muck building up in his throat.
"Where... am... I?" He questioned out loud, little more than a whisper. But in a place as empty as the void he occupied the sound travelled, echoing and echoing into an unimaginably deafening slince.
"Hello?" He said. Silence. "Hello!" He shouted. Silence. "Is anyone there?!" He screamed. Silence. "Can someone help m-"
And the game screen appeared. Startled, he flinched away, closing his eyes and holding up his hands in fear before, as nothing happened, he inched his eyes open.
The blank white screen stared at him. On it was a question. Beneath it, he words "No" and "Yes" blinked in tandem.
"Load in map?" He queried. There was no reply. "Um... yes?"
The world fell away beneath him. He screamed as the ground rushed up to meet him, fear coursing through his mind as he hit the forest floor. However, there was no pain. There wasn't much in the way of impact at all. The smell of leaves and mud wafted into his nostrils, and as he stood, wiping off the grime and marvelling at his survival, he saw the uncompromising screen in front of him.
"Begin tutorial?" He groaned, "What the fuck is this, some sort of game?" Seeing little other choice, he tapped the yes button. A loading screen briefly covered the screen, before fading away to reveal a title card.
Welcome to Remnant: The Game!
To get you started, an explanation. On your planet, Earth, you died along with the entirety of your family. You however, were chosen to take part in an all new-
He had since stopped paying attention. He... he died? No, that can't be true, he was on a coach with his family. They were celebrating his marriage, and he had his two kids sitting on his lap, and his wife was next to him with a look of terror as the bus driver swerved to avoid a broken down car, and then they were spinning and spinning and-
"No... no no no, they can't be dead, they can't be gone, my life was perfect, my life..." he recalled something the screen had said. He was chosen. It brought him back to life, it could bring them back too!
It was currently showing something about wherever he was - as if he cared right now - when he cut it off with a wave of his hand. "Please, bring me back to my family."
Your family cannot return. They are dead.
"But I was dead too! You brought me back, so you can bring them back as well!"
You are not dead. You were chosen. Your family died.
Desperation turned to rage. "I don't give a shit if I was chosen, bring them back as well! You can do it, why the hell won't you?"
The game screen hovered in the air, displaying the same message. Taunting him with its "powerlessness."
"Fucking answer me! If you can bring me back, why the hell won't you bring back them!"
He raged at it for over an hour. He begged and pleaded for it to show mercy. He cried, and screamed, and whimpered, but the screen never changed. And when he had cried all of the tears he could cry, he gave up, and lay there.
He died of dehydration three days later.
Game Over. Better luck next time!
"You see? That's why everyone ALWAYS max's gamer mind and body first. Who knows what your avatar is gonna do otherwise?"
*sigh* "Fine, your right. I just thought that if I bufffed all of his other stats a bunch first, I'd have a head start you know? Become some sort of wizard, or ultra thief or something."
"Dude, those humans literally have to die to join the game. You think they're gonna be all sunshine and rainbows*?"
"Hey, I didn't think the creators were serious about that! You ever seen any of those gamer videos on YouTube, with like, the grandmasters and stuff? I watched one of their tips and tricks vids, never even mentioned the gamer mind OR body. I mean, you have to invest 100 levels into both just to get them above "suicidal tendencies." Can you imagine if someone was GENUINLY okay with being reborn?"
"Dude, that's happened before you know. It was a couple hundred years ago or something, this guy got "The Buddha." He thought he would be real strong, but the avatar just sat on mountains or some shit, boosting his intelligence. Didn't matter what quest he was given, the rewards, the penalties, none of it. Had to ban religious dudes after that."
"Oh, THAT'S why none of them give a fuck about God, or who makes the game or whatever. That always bugged me."
"I know, right? Now move over, I'm thinking of trying that Jaune character before I run out of tokens*."
"Jaune? Seriously? Dude, that is so overdone, try Nora for once, or that Junior guy, they recently added him!"
"I've got 5 tokens, so I'm spending them on someone easy!"
Sunshine and rainbows - a direct translation is impossible, but that more or less fits.
Tokens - think of them as chapters. Five tokens is roughly equal to two and a half times more than the number of generic gamer chapters I'm willing to read. At a maximum. Usually.
Now, if you hadn't figured it out yet, that end section was a conversation between two of the cosmic beings who play the game. I mean, if you're in a game, then you aren't the one playing it. That's like saying no one controls Mario, and Luigi's mansion is a real video he made of his own horrifying events.
But, in the end, there you have it. A classic gamer story, with one key difference. I would genuinely be interested in seeing a fleshed out story of someone who doesn't recover fully after a nights sleep, or who is seriously freaked out by the literally life changing event that chose them for some unspecified reason.