[Written By: Liam Valentine]
I have a confession…I hate horror video games. I write, read and watch horror daily and cannot get enough of it but if there is one medium that I cannot endure, it is horror video games…they scare the pants off me! Being a glutton for punishment, I thought I would spend this month checking some of these out just for you, dear reader. So grab a hold of your joysticks and let’s dive in.
Dead By Daylight
Okay so I lied…I actually love this game but only when I play as the killer. A 1-v-4 game where one person plays as the killer and the other four as survivors; the killer must hunt and kill the survivors while they are busy completing tasks to escape the nightmarish world that they are trapped in. I have so much fun with this game when playing as the killer, especially as there is a huge roster to chose from! Original characters are included as well as favourites from your favourite franchises such as Michael Myers, Pinhead and Ghostface. This game stresses me out so much playing as the survivor and I crumble into complete terror whenever the terrifying music starts to play that notifies that a killer is nearby. There is so much fun lore to discover with this game and it is impressive that it is still going strong to this day. I highly recommend playing this with some friends and feel free to invite me to play but only if I can be the killer…unless you want to hear me screaming down the microphone.
Blair Witch – The Game
The Blair Witch Project is one of my favourite horror movies and one of the few to truly scare me senseless and so does this 2019 video game. Set two years after the events of the 1999 movie, the player controls former police officer Ellis Lynch as he joins the search in Black Hills Forest for a missing boy. Luckily you are not alone in the woods and you are escorted by a very good boy: Bullet the retired police dog who the player can utilise to help them progress through the nightmare forest. The game has a great story and quite imaginative gameplay that pays homage to the original movie by including camcorder puzzles and camera-based stealth sequences. I screamed multiple times trying to play this and ended up having to watch gameplay instead because I am a WIMP. There are multiple endings which is dependant on the actions you take during the game which could lead to some fun replays. Or you could just watch them all on YouTube like I did.
Buffy The Vampire Slayer: Chaos Bleeds
For someone who claims to hate horror video games, this is now the second game that I confess to loving. I cannot tell you how many times I have played this game, especially the Quarry level where you get to play as Faith. Set during the shows fifth season, and adapted from a discarded idea for the shows finale, the player gets to play as multiple favourites as they traverse the world (and underworld) of Sunnydale and dealing with parallel universes and the battle against The First. This is a must-play for Buffy fans and they’ll be surprised to hear that most of the cast voice their respective roles and Giselle Loren does an incredible job of imitating SMG. This fun, action game is not without its scares though and I admit that there have been multiple times where a demon has caught me off-guard, sending my controller across the room and screaming into the void. My biggest criticism is that we never get to play as Giles, especially in his sexy Ripper form.
Evil Dead: The Game
Much like Dead by Daylight and Friday the 13th : The Game, this game is loaded with PVP and co-op action and is a lot of fun to play with friends. Admittedly, I’ve watched more gameplay of this than I have clocked hours into playing it but, as we have already established, I am a horror video game wimp. Filled with characters from the franchise and lots of references to the iconic movies, including the underrated 2013 remake, fans of the franchise will love this! As one might come to expect from the franchise, this game has plenty of tongue-in-cheek humour which leads the player into a false sense of security and then will mess them up with an immediate scare. You can invite me to play along with you on this one, but I will probably decline; I don’t need that kind of public humiliation.
The Sinking City
Full disclosure: I barely made it through this one so my recommendation is purely from me watching gameplay online. In this Lovecraftian survival horror, the player controls Charles Winfield Reed, a U.S. Navy sailor and World War I veteran turned private investigator who has been asked to visit the flooded town of Oakmont, Massachusetts to discover the cause of nightmarish visions that are plaguing the residents there. Scares are aplenty as the player must fight to stay alive and to stay sane in this twisted world brimming with occult and unspeakable terrors. This game has some outstanding writing and contains multiple endings based on choices made by the player. You might have to keep the lights on while you play this one, or just watch someone else play it and spare yourself a change of underwear.
On the surface, this seems like a simple, deck-building card game but as you play, you descend into a dark, terrifying world filled with puzzles. This game truly rewards the player as they interact with a mysterious dealer in a dark cabin, finding further secrets that expose more of the lore. This was an unexpected one for me, and I did not expect the many twists (and scares) and found myself running away from my screen multiple times. The aesthetics of this game are truly a marvel, transporting you into a twisted version of a 90’s floppy-disc style nightmare game and it will not disappoint you, trust me!
And that’s game over, folks! Apologies is this is not as robust as my usual entries, but I am not exaggerating when I say that horror games truly put the willies up me (oi oi). Maybe I’ll come back for another playthrough one day but until then, keep it creepy!