Vindictus is an Action MMORPG on the popular game site known as Nexon. Nexon is known for other games such as: Mabinogi, Maplestory, and Dungeon Fighter Online. I got addicted to Vindictus due to its fast flow and fun gameplay and artwork. For a time, it was the game that I was looking for to help pass the time as I sit here at my house looking for work. Some could say that I'm wasting my time here or that my time could be better spent on other activities during the day. However I choose to play this game in my free time when I don't have much else to do.

Just one thing about the game bothered me; terrified me, in fact, so much so that it's hard to believe that this thing was made the way it was. I’ll still play the game, just not as much anymore.

Aww hell I'm sure you’re asking why. Let me tell you...

The Pasta

It all started a few weeks ago right after Christmas. New year has come and now it was nearing its finish. Everywhere people are drinking and celebrating the wonderful new year.

Not me.

I sit at home playing Vindictus and enjoying my stay with friends that I met online. During one of the dungeon runs with a group of random people I met, my computer gave me the Blue Screen of Death indicating that my computer has overheated. This was normal because my fan only works when it feels like it, though it's uncommon that it does blue screen, at times it does prove to be a huge inconvenience to me. So I let it reboot itself. I bypassed the prompt screen asking me if I wanted to start Windows in safe mode.  

Shortly after I enter my passwords and everything I let it boot as normal. As the desktop began to populate I double clicked the icon of Vindictus to get it started, knowing that it will take some time for my computer to boot up along with the game, and I thought this would be the perfect time to go into the kitchen and get me a cup of coffee while I waited.

I was greeted with the launcher asking me if I wanted to patch to a newer version of Vindictus. Though odd as it looked. most of Nexon's games patch automatically and normally after maintenance, however I didn't really think on it nor cared at the time being, so I reluctantly hit “Yes”.

Patching wasn't long. 5 minutes to be exact, but the name of the patch file for the patch was weird. PoF Build Version/?/?... I've never seen a build version end like that before but I just thought it was a minor error. Most of the translations in most games overseas are a bit broken and jumbled. Upon entering my login information and entering the game world I noticed something in the corner of the character select but I clicked my character so fast I didn't see it.

So I went back to the select screen and saw a robed man drinking next to one of my characters. Who was this man? Where did he come from? Is that Nyle from the magic shop? He wears a robe similar to this? I don't know. I can't even see his face. All that's there is the model's back and from time to time you see his head tilting back indicating he’s either drinking something or eating. I clicked on him to see what he could do if he was even selectable. I saw his arm move up and watch one finger point upward. He then waved his hand around saying “no no no” with his hand movements.

So what the hell. I got this odd and mysterious looking character I can't select. With a sigh I just grab my main character and proceed to head into the game world. I repeated the same dungeon my computer crashed on so that I can get the quest done that I needed.

Thanks to Nexon giving me something called “Re-deployment Package”, I was over-powering all of the monsters my level, which made playing the game alone a breeze for me opposed to having to find party after party to complete quests.

One thing stood out of place, though. Killing the monsters normally would make them rag doll on the floor like all other Source games but there was one pointing, asking me to follow. How I know this is that? All the other monsters threw themselves at me.

This one just stood there waiting for me to finish. Once I got close enough it waved his hand pointing and ran off in that direction. However, I couldn't catch up to it. The model was moving 4 eerie times faster than my in-game character was. Even with all the speed boosts and abilities to move quick I just could not keep up. 

It reached a dead end then it turned to me. It cupped its ears. I didn't catch the gesture at first and quickly killed the monster; however I did hear something. No it was no music playing backwards or something eerie. What I did hear mystified me. I had to turn up my speakers and volume way way up to hear this.

It was very faint and almost inaudible. However it did say “It burns” and “She burns”. It burns... she burns... what do they mean? Is this what the monster was trying to tell me? To listen and help him? I don't know. Again it's just a game, I'm sure this was a plot made by Nexon as another way to implement a Pay-to-Participate event.

After completion of the dungeon I wanted to return to town to sell the loot to the Marketplace and turn in the quest. Instead of going back to town normally, I was entering a boat dock preparing for the dungeon battle “Grey Snow”. Very confused, I tried leaving the party though the option to leave was absent from the selection. I wasn't scared, just concerned as to what was actually going on and why. Reluctantly I hit the start button or at least thought I did. I soon realized that a player entered my party. It was what I think an Unfinished Greyscale model of Lann. It was as if you're in the game's model creator.

Everything about him was grey, head to toe, but that's not the thing that got me. His name was what sent chills down my spine. All it was was “Burning”.

Shortly after, he was ready to depart. After I hit start, the depart scene that always plays before the dungeon didn't start out normally. Instead my character looked scared and unwilling to go. And the greyscale.. did nothing. It just stood there looking at me with those grey, empty eyes. The loading page finished and I was sent to Colhen. Only difference being that my weapons were drawn and able to attack in the town but under normal circumstances this was impossible. But I had a feeling this wasn't a normal game anymore. 

I left the shore area to head into the town. As normal there were no NPCs, only farm animals and cats and dogs, but no players. I checked the channel and there was only one. However it didn't have a number. It just had one word: “Stay”.

Entering buildings proved to be useless. None of the NPCs inside were there. None of them were inside. Strangely enough, when you went to talk to the marketplace, you saw the pig but it just laid there on the fence post. It was alive, just slumped over. Same thing with the cat but unlike the piglet the cat just had its back turned to you. And they, of course, would not interact with you.

After checking every store and realizing there was no one there, I tried to leave to head to the Royal Castle Rocheste. But as soon as I got to the portal to head into that overworld the greyscale model just said, “you can't leave. Not yet.” I then typed, “What's happening? Is this a joke?”

Burning replied, “No. No joke. Help her. She's burning. Won’t you save her?”

I hit the enter key as fast as I could to say, “Who’s she? What does she want with me? And if she’s burning why hasn't she just put herself out?” For a while, nothing. But then Burning said, “Because you were the one to set her on fire.”

Really confused and slightly creeped out, the battle finishes but neither the music nor the sign comes up, just the results. Again like before, I was taken back to the boat, about to do another dungeon: “Ashes to Ashes”. This time I waited for no one, and hit start and, just like last time, my character was afraid as if she really doesn't want to leave that boat.

Back in Colhen but at night. Everything is dark; very difficult to see. I tried going back into town only to find out that the gate to lead us into town was filled with garbage allowing no passage through. I did find the greyscale model Burning again, only this time his name, title and motto read: “She’s Now Burning To Death”. A message popped up as though the greyscale whispered to me saying, “Take this boat to Melina. She's waiting for you. Hurry.”

I take the boat to Melina as I was told to. There was nothing else in Colhen for me so why stay? Once there I was automatically kicked into a conversation with Gwynn the Royal Soldier, but her picture went from this stoic lady to a broken down mess. Her picture was her with torn armor and her hair was now messed up and un-kept; tears in her eyes, with one hand wiping her eye. Biting her lower lip, she told me that she was too late. She couldn't stop the burns, and that it was all my fault. All I had to do was save her.

I ended the conversation and walked up the hill. Now I'm getting a bit creeped out. Who was she? That question pounded my head. I got into another conversation with the small boy Milo. He too was crying and looked like a horrible mess, only more emotion was shown on his face: his joyful eyes replaced with sadness and tears. His shirt ripped and torn slightly off. He kept asking me: "Why? Why didn't I do anything?"

OK now I've got to know. Who is this person is and why was she so loved by the game? The closer I got to the center of town, the more depressing and terrible the townspeople looked. It almost made me want to cry myself, however my tears that I had turned to fear when Cennet said, "You’re a bad lady! You set her on fire, and pulled out stuff from her...I thought monsters were in caves, daddy.” Confused what she meant by “stuff”, I finished my walk to the center of the town.

In the center was a coffin. No real detail about it, just a wooden coffin. Just the ones seen in the Anile area when you killed the vampires. Only it's bigger. However when I got close to it the E button appears. I hit it to see what would happen. She slowly opened the coffin... 

My computer crashed again...Well, damn it. So I rebooted everything again and tried to get back to it. Hopefully nothing changed. Oh but it did...

The title screen changed. Vindictus didn't start out in a pub greeted with a knife on a table. Instead a boat traveling by sea. But this boat was burning. Fire blazing from it all. Smoke leaving a trail as black as night and thick, as well. I watched this boat burn going down the river bank. I noticed there was someone moving inside the inferno.

I hit 'Play Game' and was only prompted with one character. Katerina. My character. She was burning. Inside that fire. Burning. I watched her twist and turn in the fire. I couldn't hear her screams but the way they were animated looked painful. She was barely recognizable as her skin began to melt and her hair was singed off. Her armor and clothes burning to ash. Her innards looked like they’ve been pulled out forcefully as a huge gaping hole in her stomach.

She falls over the edge splashing into the river bank. Soon after, the boat crashes and slowly sinks. At this time my game crashed again. That sight threw me completely off and frightened me. I reopened the game to notice my character wasn't there anymore but now that robed man can now be selected. It entered the game but the screen stayed black for several minutes. Then I heard something.

Sounded like a creak.

Like an old wooden box being opened for the first time in years.

A ray of light bellows in from the top left corner. It grows bigger and brighter till the screen turns white.

I see Katerina's face looking down at me. 

She then said,

“She burned.”

All credit for the fully edited pasta goes to User:41488p

All credit for the original pasta goes to User:Kayoxka. I liked your pasta. Why did you have to ruin it this way?