Blink: The game.
The idea I had for this story was inspired by a game that most of us have played in our life. Remember when people stared at one another to see who blinks first? I imagined a game that I called “Blink”, and works almost the same way, but it happens in a virtual reality where you can create everything to make the adversary blink first.
This publication is the second of a series of publications where I tell the entire story. Link to part 1.
After the loading bar is complete we see Klarich inside the game. He is alone in a very blank space and he seems a bit surprised about his own image. Out of nothing comes up a baseball coach wearing jeans, a cap, holding a bat, wearing a very common coat, and smiling in a sarcastic way. I’m going to refer to him as Nicholson.
Nicholson says: Hey, you must be Klarich… And you are probably asking yourself a few questions… So, let me introduce myself. I’m a program. I was made by your brother in order to monitor some of the game activity and help on training… You are new… So, I guess I must inform you about the rules… First rule: who blinks first loses… That’s it. But you can use a few tricks.
We see a train coming from behind Klarich and the train is not so far from him.
Nicholson continues: For example, look behind you.
The train is about to collide with Klarich, and it honks, and we cut to black as Klarich blinks. Then we fade in and both are 4 meters away from each other.
Nicholson (laughing): Point for me! I got you. This is how the game works, kid… You blink, you lose. Now I must inform you of some little important details. Are you interested?
Klarich (giving the game a chance): Yeah.
Nicholson (pulling something out of his own pocket): Okay. Look at this ball. It’s not a baseball ball yet. It is all white with a few straight angles. Not a perfect sphere. Before I play with it I believe it should be more convincing right? So I must work on the details. Use your mind. Visit every image you have as possible. See?
The ball gains a few details and starts to look like a very used baseball ball.
Nicholson: try not to blink this time, okay?
Nicholson beats the ball with his bat, and the ball goes in Klarich direction but he doesn't blink and the ball passes thru him.
Nicholson: That’s it, boy. You did it all right! The same thing would happen if you didn’t blink with the train. It would just have passed thru you. Nothing here does any damage… Try not to worry. Just focus… Now let’s take a look at this. Lesson 2.
Nicholson snaps his fingers, and we see a circle drawn in the ground with two naked stone statues of greco-roman wrestlers in the middle. These statues are not moving, but they are in the very center of the circle and both seem to be pushing each other in opposite directions.
Nicholson: imagine two fighters equal in every little detail. One must push the other out of the circle in order to win, but they have the same weight, same skills, same muscles, and even the same tricks. How can one of them win?
The statues start to move, but none of them seems to push the other with any success.
Nicholson: The same thing happens in Blink. Let’s say that no one blinks, no one is surprised by anything. Then, we would call it a draw. But someone has to win, right?
Nicholson beats the leg of one of the statues with his baseball bat. The fight between the statues becomes more dynamic, and it looks like the statue that was hit by the bat is going to be pushed out of the circle, but it is the other one that is pushed out of the circle, and when it is pushed out it is turned into dust.
Nicholson: this game works better for you when you give in sometimes. Let yourself react to other people's imagination. Let yourself be interested in every move of your opponent. Don’t think you are in control. Don’t try to control everything. Look for a surprising move.
Klarich: you make it sounds easy…
Nicholson: You could just sit still and believe you are safe, and in control of everything, just like Buda or something. And try very hard not to blink.
Eventually, you can win… But, to be certain, you must surprise the adversary. You will see… But, before you play with anyone, you must work on your imagination. Let’s imagine now a wave, for example.
A wave appears next to them. It’s not crashing but it is moving. And it doesn’t look real yet. It has a poor resolution and a few straight angles.
Nicholson: if you work enough with your mind you can put more details in every image you bring here. So create your set of tricks before you play. Imagine nice waves, plain fields, dragons, soldiers if you like, or whatever… Like Bruce Lee once said: you can only fight the way you train.
The wave gets more details and a better resolution.
Nicholson: And one last thing. This game prioritizes change. So if I imagine a wave my opponent can turn it into anything. If I begin to hear “samba”, you can turn it into “rock” or whatever.
The wave is turned into sand and small rocks.
Nicholson: So you can change almost anything but your opponent, and anything they have as an extension of their body, like, for me, my bat, can’t be changed. I mean you must be linked to what you imagine, feel its weight, and that’s the only way it won't be changed. And if both try to change the same object it gets glitchy.
Nicholson (walking away): now I’m going to leave you here. You have a lot to work on yourself now. Bye.
Nicholson vanishes out of thin air, and we see and hear his baseball ball and bat falling in the ground.
Klarich: Fuck. It must be late now.
Klarich takes the virtual reality glasses off, and we see him back in his room. He sees his digital clock next to his bed (it’s 2:15 after midnight).
Klarich: Fuck. I must sleep.
End of part 2.