Video Game: Super Columbine Massacre RPG
Super Columbine Massacre RPG! (SCMRPG!) is a freeware RPG created by independent filmmaker Danny Ledonne using RPG Maker 2000. It was released on April 20, 2005, the sixth anniversary of the Columbine High School massacre — which is the main topic of the game.The first half of the game is basically a reenactment of the school shooting that took America and the world by storm — Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold planning the massacre, setting up the equipment needed, arriving at the school unnoticed, planting the bombs at the cafeteria, raining bullets on unfortunate students and faculty, and ending their own lives when the police exchanged fire with them. The second half of the game has the two boys ending up in hell, reliving their favorite game, Doom.The game attracted controversy due to its alleged glamorization of the massacre. Many mainstream publications considered SCMRPG! to be one of the worst games of all time, and victims and their loved ones called out Ledonne for trivializing an otherwise sensitive topic. However, there were other journalists who comprehended the game's intention of making players understand what prompted Eric and Dylan to perform one of the worst school shootings in history. SCMRPG! was even disqualified from the Guerilla Gamemaker Competition of the 2007 Slamdance festival, and it took the boycotting of other competitors for the festival's organizers to come to their senses.Ledonne would later create a documentary about his game and the controversy it spawned, Playing Columbine. He has stated that SCMRPG! would be his first and only game.The game can be downloaded here.
Super Columbine Massacre RPG! provides the following tropes.
- Brutal Bonus Level: Besides being a literal interpretation of hell, the second half of the game can be this, especially when Dylan initially winds up there alone, being surrounded by hostile demons. The level mercifully gets less brutal once Eric rejoins him and they acquire better weaponry.
- Defeat Means Friendship: Once Eric and Dylan defeat Satan, he accepts them as his minions.
- Expy: Dylan (a.k.a. "VoDKa") looks like a blonde-haired version of Neo from The Matrix. He can even dodge enemy attacks "Matrix-style".
- Fire and Brimstone Hell / Planet Heck: The second half of the game takes place here. Enemies from Doom litter its landscapes; while an enemy-free area, the Isle of Lost Souls, is populated by Real Life personalities such as John Lennon as well as fictional characters such as Mario and Mega Man.
- Guide Dang It:
- Sneaking through the hallway undetected by security cameras and NPCs can be frustrating for many players.
- If you have missed that copy of Ecce Homo at Columbine, you will never progress in hell beyond slaughtering demons and will be forced to restart the game.
- A Hell of a Time / Like a Badass out of Hell: Eric and Dylan really enjoy reliving their favorite game in, you guessed it, hell.
- Informed Equipment: Dylan and Eric are wearing clothes no matter how much you take them off (e.g., you can take a baseball cap off of Eric and he will still wear it on his head even though it is off).
- Luke, I Am Your Father: Parodied in the Island of Lost Souls: when you speak to Darth Vader, he will say, "I am your father," which is heard in an audio clip from The Empire Strikes Back; the "Empire's March" then plays as background music.
- The New Rock & Roll: The game was decried as a glorification of the massacre and violence in general, except to those who have actually played the game.
- Red Eyes, Take Warning: Dylan and Eric's profiles become creepy versions of this in the second half of the game, especially with Eric's Deliberately Monochrome profile.
- Satan: The South Park version of him appears in this game, and it's up to Eric and Dylan to impress him.
- Shown Their Work: The creator peered over every detail about Columbine possible, from news reports to publicly-disclosed investigation reports, to ensure accuracy.
- Stealth-Based Mission: Before planting the propane bombs at the cafeteria, Eric and Dylan have to go through this at the hallway.
- Villain Protagonist: If you've at least ever heard of this game, you should know whose shoes you are stepping in.