Do things that go bump in the night give you the creeps? Do you check under your bed for demonic soul-devouring monsters before going to sleep? Do you - despite having a borderline heart attack -like getting the crap scared out of you? I do, and if the recent public response to Bethesda’s "The Evil Within" is anything to go by, you do too. But it hasn’t always been like this.
Horror games have had a bit of a rollercoaster past when it comes to their success, and due to their arguably niche nature, it’s rare for a horror game to be make it as a blockbuster hit. Those developers that do attempt to reach a bigger audience by making the games more mainstream often risk losing what makes them so terrifying. After all, there are very few people who will willingly pay money to be frightened into a catatonic state.
But it can be done, and we’ve seen indie developers tackle the genre with open arms. Games like Slender are simple in nature, just pick up eight notes and you win the game. But a dark forest, perfect audio design, and no combat mechanics, leave you feeling vulnerable and scared to your wits’ end.
Among the Sleep – another project that’s looking towards Kickstarter for funding – also keeps it simple by placing you in the first-person perspective of a two year-old. Unable to defend yourself your only option is to hide at a moment’s notice as you navigate a corridor of nightmares. Will it hit its target of $200,000? Well that remains to be seen, but maybe it will paint a clearer picture of how popular the horror genre is.
If you’re not used to it by now, Gamer Chat is all about letting you lose in a hypothetical wonderland where there are no wrong answers – so best get your thinking-caps on.
- What Square Enix universe would you like to see reimagined into a survival horror game?
- How would it play, and what do you think would make it so scary?
I think it’s hard to conceive some of our popular heroes and heroines in such fragile and frightened states, but that doesn’t mean their universes couldn’t lend to the genre. For instance, instead of playing Lara Croft, perhaps you could play a young child, held prisoner as a successor to the Sun Queen, Himiko. No weapons, no means to fight, you try must uncover the true nature of Himiko’s power and escape the endless maze of temples and fearsome Oni!
As always, share your opinions with us in the comments. Feel free to discuss the topic and engage with each other’s ideas - but please be nice; there are no wrong answers.
Image Credits: Corpse-boy (deviantArt)