Misfortune is an obscure game for the original Game Boy. Since no known hard copies or roms exist, all information about the game is derived from personal accounts and a scant assemblage of screenshots. The few people who have experienced it consider it to be one of the scariest video games ever made.
Given its age and cult following among rare horror game enthusiasts, it's entirely possible that authors of widely known Creepypastas such as Sonic.exe and Lavender Town Syndrome drew inspiration from Misfortune.
The player controls what appears to be a young boy in a strange Gothic building. After brief exploring, the player is confronted by a malevolent being. Despite the character never identifying itself, some people, siting notable similarities, claim that it may be a representation of Baphomet, Beelzebub or even the Devil.
Upon meeting the mysterious creature, a dialog box will appear with the text: "I exist within the very fabric of reality. Do you want to challenge me?" This is followed by a yes or no choice. Should the player choose yes, the being replies "Then, let's begin."
The player is then transported to a series of maze-like rooms, each filled with pit drops, locked doors, keys and traps. The objective for the player is to progress through each room by either reaching the stairs to the next level, or solving another kind of puzzle. This can include answering riddles or choosing correct doors or pathways. The most well-known example is in a level where four small cabins are shown on screen: a dialog box will appear that reads "Choose wrong and misfortune will befall your loved ones. Are you ready to play?" Should the player ever make a mistake throughout the game, the screen will cut to black for a second before showing a screen of a higher resolution of the demon with a dialog box underneath that reads "I am God here." in what appears to be blood-styled writing.
Some people who played this game and lost suddenly began to suffer from depression and there were several cases in which people committed suicide after losing the game. Other people became jittery in their everyday life, and some became physically sick. However, if they were able to complete the challenges they seemed to continue their everyday life with no change. Also, if a player was to make a mistake in game that would lead to game over, but the player quickly turned the Game Boy off, they would suffer no repercussions. It appeared to be viewing the game over screen that was responsible. This lead the few people who know of the game to wonder why exactly, losing the game would cause such drastic effects. The answer was the music.
The music in this game is generally mature, and although being limited to the 8 bit Game Boy sound bank, the music was very dark and disturbing at best. However, the "I am God here" game over screen had especially disturbing, dis-harmonic music that accompanied it and it is believed that this was the cause of "Misfortune" to the player. It consisted of deep buzzy tones and off key melody and the general sound of the music was damaging to brain wave patterns. See: Musicology.
Many people who have heard about this game, but never actually played it, have asked about how they can get their hands on a copy and why it has never been heard of (at least for the most part). It seems that searching for the game online has come up short, and all that exists are recordings of the games music and a few screenshots. Not even a copy of the ROM seems to be available via various ROM sites. Well if you're wondering where you can get a copy, if you're a hardcore Game Boy cartridge or even ROM collector, chances are, you already have it.
If you have gone through your collection of classic Game Boy cartridges and are certain it isn't there, I advise looking again. Not at the cartridges but inside them. Misfortune was never released on its own cartridge. And some people noticed that many sprites and textures in Misfortune were rehashed from other games of a similar game-play style.
A few people who played on Game Boy ROMS noticed something about certain games that didn't make sense. In some games, mainly games like Zelda or Pokémon, people discovered that glitches and sometimes a certain sequence of events and choices warped them to Misfortune.
Where It Is Hidden
Unfortunately there is very little information on this on the Internet, possibly due to the small minority of people who actually know of this game, probably due to how hard it is to find. However, don't be disheartened by that. There may not be much on the game but there is something if you dig deep enough. Don't expect to find information on it at the top of your searches. One thing that does seem certain however, is that it appears to be within the ROMS as well as the cartridges. It is uncertain how many Game Boy games actually contain Misfortune, but some of the known games are listed below.
- Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening
- Pokémon: Red
- Spud's Adventure
- Puchi Carat
- Atelier Marie (JP)
The only question this leaves, is why Misfortune is hidden, and not only hidden, but in so many different games which seem to have no connection with each other. A few rumors have been floating around that due to the games disturbing nature and its "curse" to harm people who lose at it, it was never allowed to be released and perhaps Nintendo hid it inside other titles for that reason, but this seems extremely unlikely due to Nintendo's very strict rules on what is acceptable and what isn't. And it's impossible that they would allow a game like this to be incorporated into their popular titles in secret.
Even though it was never made clear how to access this game or why it is there, it is still considered the scariest games ever made by the few people in the world that have discovered it.