Do they have Twizzlers in Hyrule?
Trick-or-treating: a time-honored tradition of showing up to strangers’ houses and demanding candy. Of course when I do it as an adult, it’s weird at best and trespassing at worst, but double standards aside, some of my fondest childhood memories are from running around my suburban neighborhood after dark on Halloween.
So, if I can’t go trick-or-treating in real life, it got me thinking about all of the video game worlds I’d want to spend the holiday in. From the quaint cul-de-sacs to the bustling metropolises, from the wholesome to the horrifying, here’s my list of the video-game-bound neighborhoods I want to trick-or-treat in.
7) Haven from Life is Strange: True Colors
They say you always want what you don’t have, and after growing up in the bizarre in-between that is suburbia, I envied the coziness of small towns. Life is Strange: True Colors‘ setting of Haven is so idyllic, it almost feels like hyperbole, so the idea of spending my favorite time of year there makes me weak at the knees.
We got a brief glimpse of Haven at Halloween time in Steph’s spin-off DLC Wavelengths, as she decorated the record shop for the season. Now imagine the whole entire town like that, but then with the backdrop of red, orange, and yellow trees on the mountains, far as the eye can see. Slap on the festivities and general atmosphere of the town, and it’s a dream come true. The one downside is that the town does have its deep, dark secrets, but I imagine I won’t really have to engage with that considering I’d just be a tourist, right?
6) Maple Bay from Dream Daddy
Okay so this one seems like it might be more of what I’m used to with the whole suburban neighborhood situation, but we all get nostalgic sometimes, right? Besides, there’s a whole bunch of hunky, single dads running around, so that’s a big plus, and from my experience, suburbs always have the best decoration setups.
You know that the residents of Maple Bay are going to go all-out for the festivities, too, especially someone like Damien. Joseph would totally make some bangin’ food, and Matt would curate the best Halloween playlist ever. I just know that I personally dig some wholesome dad vibes, and having a multitude of dad energy on my favorite holiday sounds like a pretty good time to me.
5) Hateno Village from Breath of the Wild
Okay, so I’m no Zelda expert, but I’m pretty sure they don’t celebrate Halloween in Hyrule. Maybe they have some kind of fantasy version, I’m not sure. Either way, I want to trick-or-treat in this game for a few reasons.
For one, the food in Breath of the Wild looks so insanely good, I’d love to gobble down some treats from the game. The world is also just so beautiful, I think Hateno Village would look great with some festive decorating. There’s something really weird to me when I think about the people of Hyrule celebrating our normal, non-fantastical holidays, but I kind of love it. From what I can tell, Hateno is also the village in the game with the most kids in it, and there’s nothing better than seeing kids experience the magic of Halloween for the first time.
4) New Donk City from Super Mario Odyssey
Remember how I said we always want what we don’t have? This is the other side of that coin. Sure, I live in a city now that I’m an adult, but that’s the problem — I’m an adult, so I can’t exactly see what it feels like to trick-or-treat in a more urban area.
Hence the New Donk City fantasy. Because it’s not just a regular city; it’s colorful, whimsical, and has a hot mayor who sings a city-wide musical number! Seems to me like the perfect place to celebrate my all-time favorite holiday. Whereas the slower pace of the towns on this list might give me the cozy, homey feeling I’ve been missing, I know New Donk City is where I could go to get down for Halloween, and man, does that sound fun.
3) Central Yharnam from Bloodborne
Okay, I know this one is a little bit crazy. The obvious caveat here is that everything and everyone is going to try to kill me if I step foot in this place, but let’s pretend for a second that that’s not the case. Let’s pretend instead that it’s like a theme park replica, where things are scary but can’t touch you.
Central Yharnam has the perfect Halloween atmosphere — the decrepit Victorian city, the strange voices coming from the windows, the horrible creatures walking around. It gives that little bit of horror that I’m looking for to spice up my life. Plus, the people in the houses seem pretty nice, and I’d love to see what weird, disgusting stuff they’d put in my bag. Is Yharnam the most Instagrammable Halloween setting? No. But it’s probably one of the spookier neighborhoods you could choose, and what’s more in the spirit of the holiday than that?
2) Rapture from BioShock
This one also needs a caveat, but it’s my list and I’ll do what I want. I’m talking pre-fall Rapture on this one, mostly because I know the parties down there had to be wild. I’m all about the extravagance of an experience, which is something I find to be severely lacking above sea level these days. All I know is that if Sander Cohen threw a Halloween party, it would go down in history.
I get the feeling I’d have a few doors slammed in my face when I actually tried to trick-or-treat in this game, but if there’s a small chance that I’m going to get a plasmid in my bag, I’m going to take it. Plus, I’d get to wander around Rapture in a Halloween costume — just think of how insanely cool the pictures would turn out.
1) Pelican Town from Stardew Valley
If you’ve read anything I’ve written for this website in the past few months, this one shouldn’t come as a surprise at all. Pelican Town technically calls its Halloween celebration Spirit’s Eve, but the intent is still there. Maybe I just love the idea of unattainable video game food, because eating the spread they set out at the center of town is also a factor in my considerations here. Plus, the haunted maze seems so cool, it’s one of my favorite seasonal events in Stardew Valley.
The biggest reason this game is on my list, though, is that I just love the idea of going around to everyone’s houses in a classic trick-or-treating situation. I don’t even know if they do that in Pelican Town, but if they don’t I’m starting a new tradition. I’ve played the game enough that I’m so endeared to all of the characters, and as someone who doesn’t really know their neighbors as an adult, having the kind of community where I could go knock on my friends’ doors to get candy sounds really nice.