Does anyone remember an old PC game from the early 1990s called "Mr. Mix''? It's mainly a typing game, similar to Mario Teaches Typing, where you have to type words into a box to make a chef (the titular Mr. Mix) put ingredients into a bowl.
Unlike most typing games, however, this game is notorious for having an insane difficulty curve. The game has a "Words per Minute" requirement for each level, being as low as 10 on level one and as high as 85 on the third. By level five, the requirement reaches over 500, effectively making it impossible to proceed any further.
One of the main things that people noticed about this game immediately was the background music. The music on the first level was an unsettling pattern of growls that got progressively louder as the level went on, often causing damage to early computer speakers that were not designed to handle extremely high volumes of sound.
The second level had no music at all and the third had what sounded like an extremely low-quality recording of a hair dryer playing in the background. The remaining two levels had an extremely loud high-pitched ringing throughout the level that caused severe ear drum damage to those who managed to get that far.
Another rather disturbing aspect of the game was the design of Mr. Mix himself. He was a large, round-faced, overweight man with large beady eyes and red spots on his cheeks.
Most children who played the game reported having vivid nightmares of Mr. Mix speaking to them in a quiet, raspy voice and threatening them to keep quiet about something. However, none of them could remember exactly what that was.
One psychologist who saw many of these children reported being disturbed by the sheer amount of terror on the faces of the children as they recounted the details of the nightmare.
Many of the children broke down into tears in the process, begging for their parents to "save" them. However, no direct relationship to the game itself could be determined by these few cases, as not all children suffered the same adverse effects.
For obvious reasons, this game did not sell very well. It remained in relative obscurity until a few years ago, when PC hackers got hold of a ROM of the game and started digging through it.
Using memory hacking software, they managed to crack the game's code and bypass the impossible fifth level. What they found, however, was extremely disturbing and caused many of them to quit the expedition altogether.
According to the reports these hackers left behind, the game behaves very strangely if the fifth level is bypassed. The game crashes violently and closes, writing a bunch of files to the user's System32 directory to the point that the RAM was almost completely filled.
These files are reportedly pictures of people with horribly deformed faces, appearing to scream in pain and agony with their eyes appearing to be bleeding from their tear ducts and their outer layer of skin torn clean off in multiple places.
If the user attempts to delete these files, the computer will violently crash and blue screen, causing permanent irreparable damage to the user's hard drive.
The hackers found that this was caused by a lone byte in the game's ROM that triggered when the fifth level was completed. After removing this byte, they were able to proceed to the sixth and final level.
Unfortunately, all of the original hackers declined to discuss what they saw in the final level. All of them became extremely paranoid and reclusive, refusing to talk about anything related to the game and showing astonishingly extreme symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder.
Most of them ceased to be able to form coherent sentences within a week and, within a month, all of them went missing. All remaining copies of the game were destroyed.
To this day, no one knows what was in that game that caused them so much psychological damage. Maybe it's better that way.
Two years after this incident, a man was arrested after trying to kidnap an eight-year old girl from a grocery store. Through DNA and fingerprint analysis, the man was identified as one of the original hackers who viewed the final level of the game.
He was wearing a white chef's hat and had a look of unspeakable malice and insanity on his face. When interrogated, the man would only say one thing.
"I'm Mr. Mix. Shhh."