image from Bloody-Disgusting.com
Since I mentioned it earlier this week while covering Beyond the Gates I figured today's Choice Cut would be the Nightmare VCR board game (or if you're in other parts of the world it might be known as Atmosfear... which is weird because I definitely remember commercials for both as a kid).
As far as the board game portion goes, your goal is simple: Collect keys and then make it to the center. In the center are pieces that each player wrote their own "nightmare" on and you have to pick one and hope it isn't yours. If you do this, and accomplish it all before the VHS is done, you win. You'll have cards to play at specific times too which will require you to yell or do something in order to gain an advantage. The fate cards are like "chance" in Monopoly where it might be good or bad. Each of your characters are taken from religious, folk, or actual history. For example, you could play as the blood countess Elizabeth Bathory, or the king of the Ghede in Vodou, Baron Samedi. Of course they just have their name and list them as "vampire," or "zombie" so it's not getting too in depth there.
Now for the tape part. This is the golden portion of the board game. With the first game you get a random guy in shitty lighting and a potato sack hood as the "Gatekeeper." He will assign you to do things, banish you to the black hole, free you from the black hole, or just make you do weird stuff before continuing. As you get in the last 10-15 minutes of the game he gets fucking bat shit crazy with making weird noises and saying crazy stuff. I can see why, if you were a kid, and you played this in the dark with some friends, you might piss your TMNT undies with this guy popping up randomly and screaming at you. As an adult it's just hilarious but you'd be surprised how quickly people get into it. You can actually check out the video on YouTube, or just watch some of it now here:
There are supposedly two sequels to it with booster tapes and then a reboot of sorts that came out in 2004. As I mentioned, I have the second game (or the first booster) but I haven't played it yet. I have watched some of the tape and it's pretty much the same thing only this time with Baron Samedi as the gatekeeper.
I lucked out and found this for $3 at a thrift store around 10 years ago. I'm sure it could be in others as well because who really owns a VCR any more? However, you can play this just via YouTube and there are pictures of the board and rules online so you could basically do your own. Although if you want you could just put the video on at a party or make it into a drinking game.