|10-29-2013, 02:35 PM||#1|
Join Date: Jan 2007
The Red Tape Recorder
Hi all. First up, this might all be a bit strange, but I'd like you to bear with me on this...
I've never told anybody about this until now, because I can't get it out of my head recently and I think people deserve to know, just in case...
I'm going to recount my experiences with the Red Tape Recorder. Or specifically, a single Red Tape Recorder. We all know about the item, yes? It's been in the game over a year now. Anyway...
Back in August last year, when the item first showed up, it was expensive. Like all new items are. I was relatively poor at the time, and this was before the 15th, the item still hadn't been added to the drop or craft system. But I was desperate to try the item out, There were only two ways to get it – either I buy the game it was promo-ing for. Or I trade for it.
I had little interest in Sleeping Dogs, so my only real option was to trade. However, due to my aforementioned poorness, I couldn't justify the amounts people were asking for the item. After a few days of tireless searching for a seller giving it for a reasonable price, I was almost ready to give up.
Then I met a certain player... I can still remember their name (Or what it was at the time) – They were listed as “Eons_Upon_The_Stars” in a trade server. The person was playing as a Spy wearing the Noh Mercy. But was default aside from that... Except for the Red Tape Recorder. They were silent for pretty much the whole time I was there, I'd dismissed them as an idler long ago. Until suddenly, they offered me a trade request.
I accepted, only to find them offering up a Genuine Red Tape Recorder! I was ecstatic! Finally, somebody selling it! I did find it slightly annoying that the item was renamed to “Memories” and had been gifted to Eons by somebody prior, but beggars can't be choosers. I asked them how much they wanted for it, and they sat silent for a while... Then just said “L'Etranger.”
Fortunately, I had one on me at the time. A spare one I'd gotten from a random drop. As this was long before the recent buff it got, I wasn't using the item. I offered it up, and to my surprise, Eons accepted! I questioned them if they was okay with it, but they refused to say anything. Eventually, I just accepted the trade, and was now the proud new owner of a gifted, Genuine, renamed Red Tape Recorder!
I was about to type into chat to thank the stranger for their generosity, but they left the server almost the instant the trade was up. So after a bit of messing about on the trade server, I decided to test my new toy out in a real game.
That's when the story takes a turn for the weird.
The item worked fine at first. I found it annoying how long it took to destroy buildings, but after a while, it became a lot of fun to use! This was before it got nerfed, of course, so Engineers started to hate me almost instantly. Not that I cared. Regardless, after a day or so, I decided I didn't like the name “Memories” on the item, so I went to my backpack and selected the item, then I hit “restore” on it.
I got the requisite warning that the restoration would clear the item's custom name, but I was fairly sure I didn't want it to be called “Memories” anymore. It was a pretty dumb name. So I hit “yes”.
Then my game crashed.
No error, nothing, just a clean crash to the desktop. This was nothing new, but when I tried to restart TF2, I got a “this game is currently unavailable” error. Eventually, I realised I had to restart steam.
A few minutes later, I had TF2 back up and running. However, looking in my backpack, I noticed something odd: The Red Tape Recorder hadn't restored, but now it was just called “Memory”.
Now, I'm not gonna' lie, this weirded me out quite a bit. Items weren't supposed to do that. But I decided it must have been some kind of glitch. The item was brand new, after all. So I figured I'd try it again later on. I decided to ease my worries with some light-hearted gameplay, so I joined a 24 hour Hightower server and got to work mowing down people as Spy once again.
Then I noticed the second weird thing...
You know how when you place the Red Tape Recorder on a building, it plays one of a few different sound files? You can listen to them all here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hnPIKqeVbx8
Well, when I placed mine, it always played the same sound. A sound that doesn't appear in that video. It was the standard Red Tape Recorder “rewind” kind of noise, but overlain with it was a voice. It simply said: “Fahn-Khoy” Over and over. The voice was low and monotone, almost bored sounding.
I'd never heard the sound before, so I looked it up. And apparently, it didn't exist. I even searched through the game's sound files, but nothing came up.
By this point, I was starting to get kinda freaked out. I decided that the item, however awesome it might have been, was not worth this kind of strangeness. So I put it away and got my sapper back out.
The rest of the day went by normally. The next day... not so much. I started up TF2, just like I always do, only to find that the Red Tape Recorder had re-equipped itself on my Spy.
I tried to un-equip it again, but for some reason, the game wouldn't let me re-equip my normal sapper. I took a screenshot of the issue and sent a steam troubleshooting report, but received no answer.
Deciding it must be a loadout glitch – what else could have been? - I bit the bullet and just played Spy with it. I tried to avoid taking it out, however, but eventually, after getting lost in a game, I ended up using it to sap a dispenser.
A new sound file played. Similar to the old one, but this time the voice was louder, like screaming. “Fahn-Khoy!”
I disconnected the game immediately, I was getting sick of this. I decided that having a glitched item wasn't worth it anymore, so I selected the Red Tape Recorder, and hit the “delete item” button.
My game crashed. And then my whole steam. It happened so suddenly that it actually made me jump. By this point, I was scared. I actually got up and left my computer. It was around 3 hours later that I eventually decided to boot up Steam again, hoping that whatever was going on had passed.
My TF2 backpack, which I had previously arranged all neatly, was a mess. My items were in random positions, on random pages, with odd spacing between them. My loadout settings were all screwed up, some of them gone completely. But my Spy was still stuck with the Red Tape Recorder equipped. Only now, it had been renamed again. This time in Chinese. It read: 返回.
I copied the letters and translated them. The literal translation? “Return” or “Come Back.”
The phonetics for the word were spelled: “Fǎnhuí” - Fahn-Khoy.
It was around this time that I remembered something: The item was a gift, wasn't it? It still had its gifted tag on it. - Gift From: “Ages_Upon_The_World”.
With little other choice, I decided to look up the account. To my surprise, it actually existed! It was a Chinese account, some of the profile description was written in English, but most of it was in traditional Chinese.
Then I noticed something odd: This person, who had supposedly sent an item barely a week old as a gift... hadn't been online in six months. Then I scrolled down, and noticed the second weird thing: Despite being away for so long, the account had a lot of recent comments. They were all in Chinese, but out of curiosity, I translated some of them.
The translation wasn't smooth to say the least, a lot of what came out of it didn't make sense. But from what I could tell, between the comments, there were three distressing facts that people were talking about.
First, Ages_Upon_The_World was dead. Second, he'd died six months ago. And third... He was found dead at his computer, with TF2 still playing.
I broke into a cold sweat, and contemplated sending a report to steam. But I was too scared. I knew there was only one thing I could do: I started up TF2 and went to the in-game shop, bought a gift wrapping kit, and wrapped up the Red Tape Recorder.
Then, I sent it to Ages_Upon_The_World.
No more than a second after the “gift sent” message, my game crashed once again. Only this time, after crashing, a Chrome browser opened itself up automatically. Instead of the usual New Tab page, it was my Google+ email account.
I had a new message.
It had no content, just a title. It said: 谢谢. The Chinese word for “Thank You.”
I checked on the Steam account after this. It was gone.
Since that day, I've never heard from Ages_Upon_The_World.
But I swear, sometimes, when somebody is playing Spy with the Red Tape Recorder... I can still hear a voice saying Fahn-Khoy.
|10-29-2013, 02:43 PM||#2|
Join Date: May 2012
|10-29-2013, 02:58 PM||#3|
Join Date: Feb 2010
Want to know the scariest thing about the Red Tape Recorder?
Valve still hasn't fixed the fact that it doesn't debuild anything but teleporters at the proper speed. I cry and scream each time my level 3 is brought down to level 1 within 5 seconds.
|10-29-2013, 03:01 PM||#4|
Join Date: Dec 2012
|10-29-2013, 03:56 PM||#7|
Join Date: Jul 2013
|10-30-2013, 01:15 AM||#10|
Join Date: Sep 2013
|10-30-2013, 03:02 PM||#13|
Join Date: Mar 2013
No joke, there were some guys on some of the Helltower servers who kept saying "Fahn-Khoy" last night. It was usually followed by those same players unleashing a massive amount of crate pallets which flooded everyone's inventories with Spooky Crates. This actually happened on several servers with several different people. I have the crates to prove it.