Polybius Arcade Cabinet


Portland, Oregon,1981,The US Government


Arcade Cabinet


Causes amnesia, insomnia, nightmares, hallucinations, and suicde


Is very addictive, effects get worse the longer it is played



Collected by

Agent Brady Brown


Dark Vault


Podium FS-9

Date of Collection

February 12, 2013



According to the story, an unheard-of new arcade game appeared in several suburbs of Portland, Oregon in 1981, something of a rarity at the time. The game proved to be incredibly popular, to the point of addiction, and lines formed around the machines, often resulting in fighting over who played next. This was followed by clusters of visits from men in black. Rather than the usual marketing data collected by company visitors to arcade machines, they collected some unknown data, allegedly testing responses to the psychoactive machines. The players themselves suffered from a series of unpleasant side effects, including amnesia, insomnia, nightmares, night terrors, and even suicide in some versions of the legend. Some players stopped playing video games, while reportedly one became an antigaming activist. The supposed creator of Polybius is Ed Rotberg, and the company named in the urban legend is Sinneslöschen (what seems to be a slightly incorrect German translation for "sensory-extinguishing"), often named as either a secret government organization or a codename for Atari. The gameplay is said to be similar to Tempest (a shoot 'em up game using vector graphics), while the game is said to contain subliminal messages which would influence the action of anyone playing it.


At a Portland, Oregon arcade in 2013, a worker discovered old arcade cabinets in the back of the store. This was one of the cabinets. He plugged it in, and history retold itself. The players felt the same thing the players did in 1981. It was later snagged by Agent Brady Brown and put in the Dark Vault.

Agents have reported that the artifact sometimes turn on upon approach despite not being plugged in.

Storage and HandlingEdit

Stored in the Dark Vault.

Neutralizer gloves and goggles are mandatory. Do not play with the artifact even with the goggles on, as they will not stop the effects from taking hold. The artifact will usually turn on when it's being moved and attempt to get its handlers to play it. Spraying the artifact completely with neutralizer will stop it from turning on for about ten minutes.

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