Horror games actually horrifying?

Discussion in 'General Gaming Discussion' started by chavosaur, Feb 7, 2013.

  1. chavosaur

    chavosaur Austin Trujillo

    Mar 11, 2012
    United States
    Huntersville, NC
    Ive been thinking about Horror gaming lately.
    See, what bothers me, is what most games portray horrors as. Which is basically, Nothing but pop out/ jump moments. I wanted to know what games yall could name that were truly SCARY. A game that actually fits the Genre of horror, without having to rely on BOO! moments.
    Personally, I cant think of a game that can bring full on HORROR without those BOO moments. Not that ive played anyway.
    In games defense though, it seems like horror is really difficult to pull off in a game. Even in movies nowadays. It all depends on someones opinion and what truly scares them.
    Gore doesnt bother me, but may freak other people out.
    BOO moments can give me a fright, while others just give em blank stares.
    What about y'all? What is a game that truly scared you to your wits end?
    EZ-Megaman likes this.
  2. Another World

    Another World Emulate the Planet!

    Former Staff
    Jan 3, 2008
    From Where???
    the first silent hill game actually scared me. that fog, and the constant beating of the ps1 controller. the problem is that it hasn't aged that well, i'm not sure those graphics would be as scary to me if i played it today.

    there is a great rpg for the nes that has a nice horror vibe for it, it was the game resident evil was based on. i did a recommends of the english translation. i'm sure it won't really "scare" anyone, but its still something to check out. its a creepy adventure from start to finish.


    -another world
    chavosaur likes this.
  3. lufere7

    lufere7 GBAtemp Fan

    Jul 29, 2010
    Well I haven't played it, but I've heard Amnesia is scary as fuck and is actually an horror experience, without cheap jump scares. Haven't played it so I can't really affirm what I've heard though.
  4. The Real Jdbye

    The Real Jdbye Always Remember 30/07/08

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    Mar 17, 2010
    I've never really gotten scared by a game, they're just not scary. Doom 3 had a few moments where I jumped though, but I was barely 13 or 14 back then.
  5. Gahars

    Gahars Bakayaro Banzai

    Aug 5, 2011
    United States
    New Jersey
    While there's the usual suspects of great horror games (the early Silent Hills, Eternal Darkness, etc.), I'm going to throw in Spec Ops: The Line.

    It's a very different sort of horror, though, and one unlike any other game I've played. The only monsters are people - the "villains", the "heroes"... and the player. I've never felt so unnerved and uncomfortable with myself while playing a game. It's not conventional horror, but what it offers makes it far, far scarier.

    Seriously, it's a great game. If you haven't played it, pick it up - I think the price has dropped a lot since its release. It's definitely worth your time.

    EDIT: Hell, even the loading screen text gives me the creeps. "You are still a good person."
  6. Sterling

    Sterling GBAtemp's Silver Hero

    Jan 22, 2009
    United States
    Amnesia is a good bet. Hardly any games create an atmosphere that drags you in. Dead Space 1 did this to an extent. The story, the environment, and some of the musical scores make the game easy to scare you. The only problem is, none of these games are dynamic. You see one scare and never fall for it again. Amnesia is powerful in that, sometimes you never know if you're going to get attacked, or if you need to pull that lamp out, or stay behind those barrels in the darkness.
  7. Taleweaver

    Taleweaver Storywriter

    Dec 23, 2009
    ZombiU scared me on more than a few occasions. And not because of startling, as you (usually) know where the zombies are due to the heartbeat sensor. But it's the whole atmosphere, the heartbeats of animals, the lack of weapons and the fact that dying sets you back a whole lot. It's all meant to make you uncomfortable from the start 'till the end.
  8. Tom Bombadildo

    Tom Bombadildo Tom BombaDadlo

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    Jul 11, 2009
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    I forgot
    Amnesia was mentioned, but it's only scary if you've got the right environment and if you can really immerse yourself into the game. Play it when it's night, no lights, with headphones on and the sound turned up. EDIT: IMO though the game isn't that scary, it's just tense and there are times when there is a sense of urgency that might make you feel scared, an example being a chase sequence or avoiding a monster.

    Other than that, early Silent Hills games to mind.
  9. Psionic Roshambo

    Psionic Roshambo GBAtemp Advanced Maniac

    Aug 12, 2011
    United States
    When I was a kid I managed to inherit a copy of E.T on the Atari 2600, I didn't know anything about games at the time (being as the 2600 was still new at the time, wood grain and all.) so I tried it out.... I am not easily defeated by any video game.... So after like several hours of trying to figure this thing out, I came to the conclusion I needed the instruction book because I was obviously doing something wrong... After reading the instructions, it was no help... The game is horrible and while I still own it to this day. I do check on it to make sure its locked away so no one else can play it.....

    Yes this game is so evil it can give you nightmares....

    Games don't scare me at all in reality, but I do get a huge kick out of making my wife and daughter play scary video games!!! Just recently I got them both to try out the demo of Zombie U, my daughter ended up throwing the controller at my wife and my wife played for about 30 seconds (being attacked by the very first zombie you run into.) at this point she then threw the controller at me. I killed the zombie paused and laughed my ass off.
  10. nachoscool

    nachoscool Outer Heaven Janitor Rank Z

    Jun 30, 2012
    United States
    8 Mile
    The Resident Evil Remake on the Gamecube is the scariest game you can ever play. If you think the original Playstation version is scary, then you will find the REmake horrifying.
    BAHIM Z 360 and Nemesis90 like this.
  11. ouch123

    ouch123 GBAtemp Fan

    Aug 2, 2012
    United States
    Ehh... I know people are going to disagree with me on this, but I've only played two games which I found genuinely scary. They were:
    Silent Hill (PS1)
    Resident Evil 4 (GC)

    Now, Silent Hill's already been mentioned a few times, so I don't think I particularly have to elaborate on that one. Resident Evil 4 on the other hand has been, to me at least, the Resident Evil with the scariest atmosphere. Except for the island (which has a special surprise for anyone who gets too complacent with the action aspect), the game was overall much scarier to me than the other ones I've played, and I've played all the main titles except RE1 (PS1, I played REmake), RE3 and Revelations.

    Mostly, though, you have to get immersed before you get scared. Some people get scared playing MGS3 by becoming immersed with the idea that you're alone behind enemy lines and if you fail, you'll be abandoned by your country and wiped out of history. Others don't get scared by games generally considered to be scared, merely because they never get into them. In fact, one game, Ju-On: The Grudge actually makes a point of berating you for being a wuss (Google "scare level sissy level") or reprimanding you for not getting "into it."
  12. Sicklyboy

    Sicklyboy ~I have crippling depression~

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    Jul 15, 2009
    United States
    [̲̅$̲̅(̲̅ ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°̲̅)̲̅$̲̅]
    I can attest for Amnesia being scary as fuck.

    If you're going to play it though, you have to play it right. Late at night, all lights off, door and windows closed, no background distractions, headphones or good speaker system turned nice and loud.

    There are no few jumpscares in the game (the ones that are there are pretty much just environmental stuff, not interactive, and they're few and far between). The game instead relies on getting under your skin and inside your head. I have NEVER IN MY LIFE had such an intense, hanging feeling of pure dread while playing a video game. Not a dread as in "I don't want to play this game", a dread as in "I really want to keep playing, but I do NOT want to go to the next room... this one is nice and safe..." Actual enemy encounters are extremely uncommon, as far as face to face ones go. They usually don't come near you and instead stay a bit further in the distance. However, it's not hard to alert them to your presence and send you into a fucking panic as you try to run. Also keep in mind that you have no way of fighting; your best option aside from running is to throw something at them, which stuns them for about a second and a half.

    This is the only game that has, on occasion, sent my heartrate spiking and actually made me start shaking because I got so scared at one point.
  13. Lanlan

    Lanlan GBAtemp Advanced Fan

    Feb 4, 2011
    United States
    I try to get scared by games but I just can't. I played stuff like Slender and Amnesia in the dark with headphones to no avail. It sucks really. Resident Evil: Revelations had me sweaty and nervous in the place with the knee-high water but that's just because my screen was flashing red and I was outta green herbs. That's the most a game has affected me in a long time.
  14. Nemesis90

    Nemesis90 GBAtemp Fan

    Nov 12, 2011
    United States
    It all really comes down to what you yourself fear the most. Defenseless among danger? Having standard weapons but fighting overwhelming odds? Or maybe you just like a more cinematic spookfest with minimal interaction. I myself find grotesque and morbid encounters pretty scary (to a lesser extent nowadays lol jaded) so i preferred classic RE in my younger days.

    Which brings me another point. ATMOSPHERE. This is incredibly important in horror games considering music, atmosphere and general immersion. If you have screechy violins playing constantly or generic monster closets every 3-5 minutes i come to the conclusion it's mediocre as a horror game, monster surprises should be spread very thin through a horror game if they're ever used, and low key dark ambient used as music really can heighten the mood, especially if it coin sides perfectly with the environment.

    With that being said i shall recommend some of my favorites

    Resident Evil 2 (aged a bit but has perfect music and immersion in my opinion)
    Resident Evil REmake (Essential to a horror fan)
    Fatal Frame 2 (Like spooky ghosts? Well Fatal Frame cranks it up to 11)
    Eternal Darkness (I love the fear mechanic used in this game)
    Doom 64 (not necessarily a horror game, but the music alone makes this arguable, more creepy than Doom 3 in my opinion)
    Clock Tower (The SNES verison, there's a translation floating around since it's JP only)

    And i think that covers it. Oh and the only scary thing about Amnesia is the horrible enemy A.I.
  15. porkiewpyne

    porkiewpyne Report-er

    Global Moderator
    Jun 8, 2008
    Sicklyboy likes this.
  16. Sicklyboy

    Sicklyboy ~I have crippling depression~

    Global Moderator
    Jul 15, 2009
    United States
    [̲̅$̲̅(̲̅ ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°̲̅)̲̅$̲̅]
    What's so horrible about it? The enemies run towards you until you die.

    The game itself, if you really do immerse yourself in it and actively try to stay immersed in the game, it can really get to you.
  17. Nemesis90

    Nemesis90 GBAtemp Fan

    Nov 12, 2011
    United States
    Well considering my playthrough, they tended to act pretty stupid most of the time, there were a few times where they even completely ignored me right out in the open. I also didn't really care for the fact that all you had to do was hide in a corner for a few moments to bypass them. I won't deny the immersion though, that was done pretty well, however, the wavy insanity effect you get in the dark is just a placebo effect. The best part of the game for me was the painting that did you know what, very subtle.

    I KNEW i forgot a game. it was based off my favorite horror movie, The Thing!
  18. Issac

    Issac I

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    Apr 10, 2004
    Silent Hill 1 and 3 together, and Silent Hill 2... The magnificent story and how it's all connected and all that...
    Silent Hill 4 is also really good, and a bit terrifying when it comes to item handling and all that (and ghosts going through walls and shit).

    Alan Wake can be scary... and it has a great story
  19. Qtis

    Qtis Grey Knight Inquisitor

    Feb 28, 2010
    The Forge
    Some games thought to be scary are mostly scary due to the shit lighting in the games. Dead Space is a game that I think is pretty cool, but the way the horror is put in it has made me not like it as much I would prefer. If I can't see shit in a game, I'll probably come to hate it. Gameplay is great sans the annoying "OK I'm about to die and I have no idea why or from where". I think I could partly change this problem with playing with my TVs settings (it adjusts the backlight according to the displayed image), but meh. It works great with 99.9% of the games I play.

    As for real horror, I think the atmosphere creates a lot of it. Music and sounds are a key factor, which give a lot to games. Try to imagine Heavy Rain for example without the tension caused by music and sound effects.
  20. Nah3DS

    Nah3DS Madre de Dios! Es El POLLO DIABLO!!!

    Feb 9, 2010
    Fatal Frame: I only finished the 2nd one and played a bit of the 4th one. It will scare you for the first 10 minutes, then you get used to it and that's it (like every horror game). The sound effects are top notch, playing it at night with the lights off and the volume up it's awesome.
    The ghost are okay, but sometimes I found myself laughing at them (specially this one), it's hilarious :lol:

    Enemy Zero: a really weird game, the setting is the cliché space station (like Alien) full with invisible creatures. The tension comes from the gameplay itself... but that comes with a price, the game it's really frustating... REALLY FRUSTATING Watch this review
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