10 Real Life Places That Will Remind You of Video Games

The problem with playing too many video games—and don’t tell your doctor this—is you start to see them almost everywhere. It might sound ridiculous, but ask anyone who plays Candy Crush or Tetris and they can verify this claim. There’s actually a cognitive phenomenon named after Tetris which happens when you put so much attention into an activity it starts to consume your thoughts and pattern your dreams. In my case, I began imagining point and click puzzles whenever I came across fire hydrants after playing the excellent graphic adventure Samorost 3. But as you’ll see below, my story isn’t unique in the slightest. In no particular order, here are 10 places in the real world that will make you think of video games. Feel free to add your own in the comments.

1. Chand Baori Stepwell, India

No, this isn’t a secret stage from Super Bomberman R, yes, we wish it was.

2. Tōjinbō Cliffs, Japan

If they eventually make a reboot of the 1995 Mortal Kombat film, this would be a great location to film at.

3. Abandoned Mines, Ural Mountains

Debris, rotten wood, and dank caverns? Looks a lot like a Skyrim game.

4. Litla Dimun, Faroe Islands

The puffy cloud hovering over this island has a very strong Civilization vibe—and we mean the tiles. Apparently, it’s the only uninhabited region in the Faroe Islands.

5. Frozen lake, Switzerland 

This magical, geometric canvas of icy water reminds us of a glitched out graphics shader.

6. Reclining Buddha Statues, Thailand

It turns out that the Sagat stage from Street Fighter can be found all over Thailand.

7. Mount Hood, Oregon

We detect very powerful Death Mountain vibes from this wonder of nature. The floating ring over the peak is enough to evoke countless memories in any Zelda fan.

8. Three Heads Six Arms, San Francisco

Does this image look familiar? You’ve probably seen it online with a Zelda HUD overlay, but we reckon it could pass for a Dark Souls boss just as easily.

9. Capitol Lake, Colorado

We’d like to caption this photograph with “Halo: Texture changes”.

Photography: Brenden Sandness

10. Centralia, Pennsylvania

A near ghost-town ravaged by coal mine fires, Centralia served as the inspiration for 2006 horror film adaptation Silent Hill.