I think about a world to come where the books were found by the golden ones, written in pain, written in awe by a puzzled man who questioned, "What are we here for?" All the strangers came today and it looks as though they're here to stay.

-David Bowie "Oh! You Pretty Things"

Monday, April 9, 2012

LOST Easter Eggs in Arkham City

I think the concept of "Easter eggs" first started getting popular once videos changed over from VHS tapes to DVD discs. That is the first time I remember hearing this term. And what better topic to discuss the day after Easter than the phenomenon known as Easter eggs. If you're not familiar with the term, it simply means pictures or sounds hidden within something else.

I finished the main story of Batman: Arkham City about a week ago, but decided to keep playing until I defeated the Riddler. To do so, you must hunt down four hundred Easter eggs: Riddler trophies and riddles hidden throughout the game. I finally completed that Easter morning and then moved on to killing zombies (which also seems very Easter appropriate).

I was never the type to hunt for Easter eggs until the 2004 ABC television program LOST first aired. I got sucked into all the Hurley's in the background of Jin's flashback stuff, trying so hard to find the hidden messages in the show. I recently came to find out that Paul Dini, an early story editor for LOST was responsible for writing Arkham City.

I discovered my first reference to LOST fairly early on in the game. You see, Batman can detect the chatter of bored henchmen as he flies around the rooftops, and one such bored henchman states, "Did they ever explain what the island was?" But the really big LOST reference takes place in one of the Joker's video monologues:

It was nice to see an homage to a television program that took up so many hours of my time in a video game that has taken up so many hours of my time. I wasn't sentimental enough to cry - no, I used up all of those tears watching the last few minutes of Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan on Good Friday, but it was a good moment for me no less.

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