I was playing a dating sim. I played it 24/7. That was until one afternoon… where something just broke.
It was just pixels. Reality broke.
These people on-screen… I felt like I knew them.
But now they weren’t people anymore.
They were just shapes. They were lines that someone had written. They never existed. They never had feelings. They never would exist, either.
It felt so sad. Like I’d just lost these real people.
This whole thing we had… was just me… alone.
That realization dumped out of the screen and into real life.
The tree out front. I looked at it every day- it was a friend outside the window.
Now it was just a thing.
Just a thing that was there. Growing, eating, and just… being there. It was like all this stuff I had felt about the tree was just in my head.
There was this guy walking by and he was just shapes. Just this moving bulk of stuff.
I cried, because nothing wasn’t there for me anymore. It was all just stuff. Stuff in the universe.
— Margaret “Mae” Borowski (Night in the Woods)